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Thursday, July 10, 2014

Featured Review of "Three, Two, One" by Victoria Perkins

"Three, Two, One"
by Victoria Perkins

This book the perfect example of creativity.  This is a story that could actually happen in the real world, which had me that much more enraptured with it.  Victoria Perkins is a wonderful story-teller.  I personally loved the way she would write what a character was thinking, but in parentheses she would put how they actually felt.  I've never seen that done before and I think it's ingenious!  The flashbacks in the story helped slowly build on the suspense as well.  My favorite character was Pacey, he understood what Cassidy was going through because he had went through his own trauma of losing his both his brothers and his mother in an automobile accident.  He also had the gift of seeing if someone was being truthful, whether to believe them or not.  These two things is why he believed Cassidy and decided to help her, in the process, falling in love with her.  I loved the way the book was set up, since it's titled "Three, Two, One", it started with the "Epilogue" then the chapters went from 7 to 1,  then ending with the "Prologue".  I thought that was very original and stayed very true to the title, as well as the story.  Overall, this is one of my new favorite books!  5 stars all the way!  Now it's my privilege to introduce the talented, intelligent, amazing, and someone I'm lucky enough to call my friend, Victoria Perkins!

An interview with Victoria Perkins

1.) Who or what inspired you to start writing?
VP: I've actually always wanted to be a writer. For as long as I can remember, stories have fascinated me. My mom says that even when I was just a couple years old, I'd tell her to go away and I'd sit and make up stories with my toys. My earliest memories of playing with Barbies is giving them all new names and creating backstories for them.
2.) Do your family and friends support your writing?
VP: I've been blessed to have an extremely supportive network of family and friends. Writing is all I've ever wanted to do, and my friends and family, especially my parents, helped me balance the realism of the field with pursuing my dreams. They never once asked the dreaded writer question "But what are you going to do for a real job?"
3.) If you weren't a writer, what career would you have chosen?
VP: For five years, I taught junior and senior high students at a small private school. If I wasn't writing, I would probably be a junior or senior high teacher either in English or drama. I loved working with the kids and seeing how they grew and matured over the years.
4.) Where did you get the idea for the plot of your story? 
VP: "Three, Two, One" actually came from a short story I wrote for my creative writing class my senior year of high school. My teacher gave us a writing prompt (which I don't remember) and the result was a story that is now the opening of the book.
5.) Where did you get your ideas for your characters, and are they based on real people? 
VP: Some of the minor characters who are crossovers from my first novel, Reeves' Island, were originally based off of real people, though that changed as their story was revised. None of the characters in Three, Two, One, however, are based on anyone I know. After writing the short story, the characters of Cassidy, and then Nora, started to take root in my mind and I needed to get their story out. Having Nora in my head was...interesting.
6.) If you can tell us, what will your next work be about? 
VP: Right now I'm working on a fantasy book that may be the first in a series. It's going to explain how characters from my books appear in genres and worlds completely different than the ones they were originated in. For example, the minor character of Andrea Monroe in Three, Two, One, appears in The Dragon Three, my newest novel, which is a fantasy. The only other thing I can say about it is there will be a lot of references to classic literature.
7.) What is your favorite book? 
VP: I can never choose just one. I absolutely love C.S. Lewis's Chronicles of Narnia and J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series. I'm also a huge fan of Stephen King's The Stand, and I've more recently fallen in love with the Divergent series as well as Cassandra Clare's works.
8.) What is your favorite book genre? 
VP: I'll read almost any genre, as long as the book's well-written, but I do have a soft spot for the fantastical, whether that's brought out in horror, paranormal, urban fantasy, science fiction or other sub genres.
9.) What is your writing process? 
VP: For my own personal work, it usually starts with an idea. Sometimes the protagonist(s) come with the idea - that happened with My Immortal, 'm Cara - and other times, once I get the idea, I create the characters to go with it. If I get an idea of where certain things are going to go, I'll write them down, but I never have a concrete outline because the story sometime changes. That happened with The Dragon Three. I thought it was going to go one way, but it ended up in a different place than I'd originally planned. 
10.) What is your favorite book that has been adapted into a film or television show? 
VP: Right now, I'd have to go with Game of Thrones. I tend to separate books from movies or television shows because I know that with different mediums, there are going to be changes. For example, I love both versions of Under the Dome, but the book and the show are different. I thought Divergent was well done and I enjoyed the Lord of the Rings films, but Game of Thrones is, in my opinion, one of the best book to screen adaptations I've seen.

*Connect with Victoria*

Keep On Reading!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Featured Review of "Scarlet Phoenix" by Bella Harte

"Scarlet Phoenix"
by Bella Harte

This is my featured review of "Scarlet Phoenix", the first installment of "The Seraphoenix Saga" by Bella Harte.  First, I'd like to say I thought it was going to strictly be a book with heavy Christian undertones.  I was pleasantly surprised.  It does start off as God, rather The Creator, making earth.  He made angels in his image to live upon the earth.  It was a paradise, but, Lucifer didn't like being told what to do so he moved far away and started getting together evil followers.  Then he created, or rather, summoned demons to be on his side as well.  The Creator found this out when Lucifer told all the other angels to join his side or there would be an all out war with plenty of innocent bloodshed.  The Creator showed up during the war to put a stop to all of it.  He created The Seraphoenix to end the war.  They were new angels with the ability to turn into something vicious, bloodthirsty, and violent enough in their "auras" to finish the war and Lucifer was banished, along with all his demons and cohorts, to hell for all of eternity.  Later, The Seraphoenix were protectors, especially guarding The Garden of Eden, until two of them fell in love with Eve.  He ends up killing Adam when "the chakra" takes control.  The Creator made Eve pick one Seraphoenix after the incident, and she picked Leo.  She would reincarnate every generation to keep the balance from then on, and she was referred to as "The Phoenix".  The story follows her and her struggles to learn/remember who she is.  This book was so well thought out.  It explains everything you need to know without drawing it out and making it boring.  My favorite thing about the whole book is the romance between Leo and Scarlet.  It's something that can't be denied, even though she reincarnated as someone else, he still loves and takes care of her, would die for her, and no matter what, he would love to just be with her, and not necessarily even in a sexual say, an intimate way.  I could go on and on about this book, but I'm not giving anymore spoilers.  I could just describe the entire book because that's how much I loved it!  I can't wait for the next installment of the saga to come out!  When it does, if you subscribe/follow this blog, you'll be the first to know!  Now I'd like to introduce the author herself, Bella Harte, here's the candid interview I felt lucky to get.  Someone so talented, and I'm sure she will have a long and successful career!   

An interview with Bella Harte

1.) Who or what inspired you to start writing?

BH: I’ve always loved stories and still have all my childhood books.  That is where my love writing began, on the pages of novels like: The Moomins, Charlie & the Chocolate Factory, The Nancy Drew Mysteries, The Lion, the Witch & the Wardrobe just to name a few, but really within all the classic children’s novels.  The art of creation has always run deep from the moment I discovered pencils, paper, crayons, paints etc...  And I’ve never stopped.
2.) Do your family and friends support your writing?
BH: Yes, I am supported but not in the way other authors probably are by their family and friends.  They just tell me ‘good job’ but never actually read anything that I write!  My husband is the one who is my true Number One Fan; he reads everything, critiques for me and gives me the honest feedback I need.  He never sugar-coats it either, which I find invaluable.
3.) If you weren't a writer, what career would you have chosen?
BH: If I wasn’t a writer I’d probably work with animals, i.e:  at a sanctuary or rescue centre. I would save the world if I could.
4.) Where did you get the idea for the plot of your story?
BH: The Plot for "Scarlett Phoenix - Book I in The Seraphoenix Saga", came out of the blue one day when I was painting my garden gates, of all things.  It just floated into my mind, followed by a host of characters that now are immortalised forever in my first Young Adult novel.
5.) Where did you get your ideas for your characters, and are they based on real people?
BH: My characters tend to emerge like butterflies from a cocoon as I’m writing.  They develop as the story is written. I never base them on real people, but that’s not to say that they don’t end up with some characteristics of people that I know or have known in the past.  It’s evitable that this happens, as I think you have to write from experience of what you actually know to make your characters ‘real’.
6.) If you can tell us, what will your next work be about?
BH: "Crimson Fire, Book II in the Seraphoenix Saga" is my next published novel, and my current work in progress is called:  "Reaper - Book I in The Angel of Death Series", here’s a little taster of what’s to come:
"The only thing worse than being dead, is being alive with no soul."

Meet Aneira Whyte, who finds out she is the only female Reaper in existence after her Aunt unexpectedly dies.  Conner Cross is her only ally when a series of mysterious deaths occur in the town she has just moved to with her estranged father, and all eyes are on her as the killings began right after she arrived in the sleepy town of Whispering Pines.   As if being prime suspect isn’t bad enough, more darkness looms closer by the day as the Nekros Witches want blood, and not just any blood. They want hers and all of it.  Aneira must take a stand to save herself and her soul from a fate worse than death.

7.) What is your favorite book?
BH: Wow, that is such a hard question, as there are so many.  But if I had to choose just one it would be The Hitchhikers Guide to The Galaxy – I have read that novel so many times and never get tired of it.  I know I should probably say something like a Jane Austen or Emily Bronte novel etc… but deep down I’m a Sci-Fi girl and Douglas Adams was awesomely brilliant, way ahead of his time with his sublime wit, eccentric characters and a skill for writing that was quintessentially unique – which I admire tremendously.
8.) What is your favorite book genre?
BH: At the moment, all things Sci-Fi aside, I love the young adult paranormal genre.  There are so many talented indie authors writing this genre, it’s impossible not to fall victim to their seductive tales of the supernatural and all things enchanted.
9.) What is your writing process?
BH: My writing process goes something like this:

  • I get an inkling of an idea.
  • The characters arrive.
  • The title pops into my mind.
  • I always know how the story begins and ends.  (The middle tends to remain a mystery until I actually begin to write, then it unfolds).
  • I sit down at the laptop and let my mind wander.
  • The words flow and the story is written.
    • Obviously, that all sounds so easy, but there are always many twists and turns that I never saw coming, especially when the characters take on a life of their own and start to do things/act in ways that I hadn’t planned for them.  Or the plot takes a turn in a direction I hadn’t planned. However that adds the spice and keeps me on my toes.
  • Edit/rewrites
  • Edit
  • Edit
  • Ready to go!

10.) What is your favorite book that has been adapted into a film or television show?
BH: I have to say, that I’m usually disappointed with T.V/Film adaptions of novels.  They seem to lose their magic as the majority are not true to the original story, which for me is such a total let down that no amount of special effects can ever make up for.   However if I had to choose, I would say J.R. Tolkien’s "The Lord of the Rings Trilogy" was indeed a fabulous and riveting series brought to life by the big screen.

*Connect with Bella Harte*

Thank you Teena ~ I so enjoyed answering all your questions, it was great fun!
Bella x

I enjoyed it as well Bella!  Please come back and chat anytime!  I can't wait for the next installment, maybe you can pencil me in for another *Featured Review*.  I'm sure the readers would love that, and I know I would!  Thank you again for my angel bracelet.  I'm posting a picture below.  Bella is so amazing in every way, I see a LONG career in her future, and I see a life-long friendship as well.  Check out her work and sites readers!   Keep On Reading!  

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Featured Review of "Nightmares and Dreams" by Jamielynn Boothe

"Nightmares and Dreams"
by Jamielynn Boothe

This is my review of "Nightmares and Dreams" by Jamielynn Boothe.  I'll warn you now, this review does have spoilers!  First, I'd like to thank Jamielynn for my copy of this amazing, heartfelt, and rollercoaster of a ride.  This book starts with you thinking, yes, Christy probably has been raped before and, has for some reason, repressed the memories of the horrific event or events.  Or maybe, she's reliving it in her nightmares because he subconscious can't handle it anymore.  Then, you get to meet her amazing and wonderful partner, Heather.  They seem to be getting back together as they have off and on through the years.  This is mainly because Christy has just moved back to her hometown, due to the fact that her favorite aunt left her her house when she passed away.  You think Christy is going to do well, having Heather, and going to therapy to deal with these awful nightmares.  Then they meet a lovely young woman named, Tracy, when they go to breakfast at their favorite diner.  She waits on them.  They notice her sweet shyness and immediately take a liking to her.  They find out that she's having serious trouble at home and her husband beats her.  Later on her hurts her so bas it puts her in the hospital, so Christy asks if she wants to stay with her.  She ends up doing so and her husband gets so angry he ends up going out with his two friends to look for a gay man he saw earlier in the day.  Excuse me, I forgot to mention, Tracy's husband, Billy, is a prejudiced, alcoholic, wife beating, red neck. I won't give everything away, but Billy ends up committing some extreme gruesome and awful crimes with his friends and some of those crimes have to do with some of the main characters.  Also, you get to meet Christy's brother and Heather's sweet, understanding mother.  I absolutely loved this book!  It's amazing that it's Jamielynn's first book!  I can't wait to read the next book!  Keep On Reading!

An interview with Jamielynn Boothe

1.)  Who or what inspired you to start writing? 

JLB:  Being an author is something I have wanted to do since I was a young teenager.  I wasn’t able to actually begin my writing career however because of personal problems until August of 2012.  I finally decided that it’ll never get done unless I actually start it.  So, I sat down one day with the idea for my first novel and started pumping it out.
2.)  Do your family and friends support your writing?
JLB:  Yes, of course.  Well I should say most of them do.  Most of them are happy for me and proud of me.
3.)  If you weren't a writer, what career would you have chosen? 
JLB:  Probably Cosmetology. 
4.)  Where did you get the idea for the plot of your story? 
JLB:  Well for starters I wanted to have it in my hometown, just to put it on the map so to speak.  The reason why I wrote about what I did is because there was so much in the news about the LGBT community.  I can relate to them and I fully support them.  I wanted to write a deep heartfelt novel about a lesbian woman, about the power of love overcoming extreme situations and how some still look at the LGBT community.  Not everyone but a lot of people.
5.)  Where did you get your ideas for your characters, and are they based on real people? 
JLB:  There is only one person in "Nightmares and Dreams" that is based on someone, but I won’t say who it is, LOL.
6.)  If you can tell us, what will your next work be about? 
JLB:  Actually I have written two novellas in a trilogy and have one more to go.  It is called "The Journey Trilogy".  It is based on addiction and recovery from drugs.  Very deep and heartfelt.
7.)  What is your favorite book?
JLB:  My all-time favorite?  Wow, I guess that would have to be one of Nicholas Sparks books.  Either "The Guardian" or "The Rescue".
8.)  What is your favorite book genre? 
JLB:  Romance and/or Drama
9.)  What is your writing process? 
JLB:  I usually write down descriptions of my characters first.  Then I like to write a summary of the story, do some research of course then start writing, hoping for the best.  I do research as I go.  Then after my rough draft is complete I revise it.  I usually have a couple beta readers read it giving me their feedback as it’s being edited.  Then I revise again.
10.)  What is your favorite book that has been adapted into a film or television show? 
JLB:  "The Exorcist"

*Connect with Jamielynn Boothe*

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Connect with Shannon McRoberts

One of my very talented Facebook friends happens to be Shannon McRoberts!  Please check out her sites, she happens to cover a lot.  Artist, author, poet, a triple threat!  Her links are listed below.  Check her out! 

*Connect with Shannon McRoberts*

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Sunday, July 21, 2013

Connect with Author Rhiannon Paille

I just became friends with this lovely woman, who just happens to be a talented author!  Below are links to connect with her and buy her work! 

*Connect with Rhiannon Paille*

Keep On Reading!