Monday, February 28, 2011

Guest Blogger: 5 Essential Ingredients for Romance by Kameron Lo

5 Essential Ingredients for Romance

by Kameron Lo who also writes for online accounting degrees and sonogram tech among other fine sites

I love a good romance novel: it's a great escape from the troubles and boredom of everyday life to fantasize about exciting, romantic adventures worlds away. Having read so many of these exciting detours from reality, I've boiled down 5 essential ingredients for romance. This is what every romantic novel needs to be tantalizing, riveting, and give me butteflies. DIK ladies read on and compare notes!
  1. A "spark" moment: Towards the beginning of the novel, there needs to be some kind of happening to spark the romance, to lay the foundation for the love, heartbreak, and (hopefully) happy ending waiting at the end where the lovers drift off in the sunset, content in each others' arms. There needs to be something to create the romantic tension and see the possibility of romance between two often opposite characters.
  2. Conflict to keep the lovers apart: Love is not easy, we all know that, and so the characters in these fantasies shouldn't have it easy either! Plus, if they were ever to live happily ever after right off the bat, it wouldn't make for a very exciting story. My favorite conflicts are another lover, or an impending war, or class issues keeping the characters apart. That way, when they do come together at the end, it's all that much more satisfying after seeing their budding love in peril.
  3. A climactic ending: I'm a sucker for endings where the romance is in danger of succumbing to some outside force. The climax of the novel should be the moment of jeopardy or danger, the moment when the conflict keeping the lovers apart comes to a breaking point, one readers obviously hope goes in romance's favor. Races against time, like interrupting a marriage ceremony, get my heart racing -- but not as much as when the lovers embrace after overcoming this obstacle in the name of love.
  4. A unique setting or circumstance: To add to the illusion, I like it when romance novels are set in a different time or place than our own. Often, a historical background adds to the excitement and conflict, like novels set in World War II. I also like novels set in contemporary times but in exotic settings, like Peace Corps volunteers finding love during relief efforts in Africa; something to add to the fantasy of it all.
  5. A hopeful ending: We all love happy endings, where the lovers whether the storm and end up together against all odds, more in love with each than ever. However, that's not always realistic, and can be an easy way out for the author. I want a satisfying ending, and if the lovers aren't together, I at least want it to be hopeful. A good romantic novel will show that love endures at the end, even if the characters aren't together.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

In My Mailbox

IMM (In My Mailbox) is a weekly meme hosted and created by Kristi at The Story Siren.

This is a way to share the books we received for review, bought, and also books borrowed from the library.


by Marian Perera

Whore…gift…and unexpected ally.

In Dagran society, Alex is the lowest of the low—a “mare”, an object to be used by the nobility. When her owner, Stephen Garnath, gifts her to his greatest rival, she begins plotting her path to freedom. Nothing and no one will ever control her again. Not her degrading past, and certainly not her growing attraction to a man reputed to be an even crueler master than Garnath.  

Robert Demeresna is instantly suspicious of such a generous gift. Yet she comes to him armed with only her sharp mind—a potent weapon he can use to defend his people from the enemy. And underneath, an unbreakable spirit that besieges the walls of his heart.   Slowly, Robert chips away at Alex’s defenses, striking sparks that make her begin to believe even a lowly whore like her could be worthy of him. Until Garnath springs a trap so cleverly hidden, war is unleashed before either of them sees it coming. A new kind of war fought with steam engines, explosives—and magic with a killing edge…

by Kris Sedersten

When Scottie Brown, a New Orleans college student, is aggressively haunted by vivid nightmares and daytime apparitions, he begins a search for answers; unwittingly putting himself and those closest to him in a confrontation with evil. To defeat the energy that torments him, he recruits a team of paranormal investigators, friends from high school, and a psychic medium.

Together, they pursue the ghosts of Scottie's ancestors in a haunted plantation deep in the Louisiana countryside. They uncover dark family secrets and the spiritual energy of a malevolent patriarch who projects an unholy prophecy that has deadly consequenes for all mankind. The power of an elusive mojo amulet becomes central to fighting Scottie's demons as the journey through the haunted mansion, filled with twists and turns, takes on a life of its own against time. Mojo is a fast-paced paranormal mystery-thriller. Edgy and fun, this book will show the reader how having faith in a power greater than ourselves will lift us through even the most unforseeable obstacles in life. - Goodreads

by Henry Brown

From medieval Europe to Reconstruction; from a post-apocalyptic future to an alien world's Dark Ages, the drums pound in adrenaline-charged unison. Strap yourself in for a wild escape from the mundane, into adventures that transcend space and time.

Allan of Barnsdale pledges loyalty to a doomed knight in exchange for inspiration to craft his tale of King Arthur...never imagining they are en route to an ambush by outlaws in Sherwood Forest.Pick Garver returns to his hometown after the Civil War a hero to some, a turncoat to most, and less likely to be with his true love than when he left.Three warriors from vastly different races must battle a sorcerer, an invading armada, and each other, while desperately seeking honor in a world where treachery is the norm.

Mechanic, armchair engineer and hot-dog pilot Rebble Rauser and his fellow citizens of the "Barbarian Nation" have their hands full protecting their sovereignty with blazing wing guns when an old rival of Rebble's makes a surprise visit during a war in a chaotic American future.The convenience of E-reading is given a pulp magazine flavor in this fusion of quality writing with the imaginative adventure-lust of yesteryear. - Goodreads

by Emily Sue Harvey

Emily Sue Harvey’s first novel, Song of Renewal, was praised by New York Times bestselling author Jill Marie Landis as “an uplifting, heartwarming story,” by bestselling author Kay Allenbaugh as a work that will “linger in the memory long after readers put it aside,” and by Coffee Time Romance as “a must-read book for anyone doing a little soul searching.” New York Times bestselling author Steve Berry said, “It captures your attention, and whets your appetite for more,” while Peeking between the Pages called it “quite simply a beautiful book.”

Now, in Flavors, this master storyteller of the human heart sweeps us along with twelve-year-old Sadie Ann Melton as she enters a life-altering season. The summer of 1950 will change everything for her. For in that summer, she will embark on an odyssey at once heartbreakingly tender and crushingly brutal. At times, she will experience more darkness than she has ever witnessed before. At others, she will thrill to lightness and joy she never imagined. By summer’s end, the Melton women in Sadie’s journey &ndash loving her, coaxing her, and commanding her &ndash will help shape her into the woman she becomes. And they will expose Sadie to all of the flavors of life as she savors the world that she brings into being.

Filled with charm, wisdom, and the smorgasbord of emotions that comes with the first steps into adulthood, Flavors once again proves Emily Sue Harvey’s unique ability to touch our souls with her unforgettable stories. - Goodreads

Friday, February 25, 2011

Giveaway Winner: Whom God Would Destroy by Commander Pants

This book give away is now closed.

Congratulations to:

I will be sending you a confirmation email in a while. Thank you to Commander Pants for this giveaway!! If you didn't win please check out other contests here in Bookingly Yours.

Guest Author and Give away : India Wilson

“I wrote THE KNOT ARTIST but India Wilson is not my real name”

I imagine that potential readers want to know why a writer would not want to claim authorship of a book. “What does she have to hide?” you might think. After all those years of writing and rewriting - riding the roller coaster of rejection and editing and finally getting it published - and then reaping the final reward of a positive public reaction (which I am humbly grateful to say it has been)  – why wouldn’t an author be proud of the accomplishment and want others to know about it? Doesn’t everybody presumably want her fifteen minutes of recognition, if not fame? We live in a culture of celebrity, where people can become famous either for doing pretty much nothing (reality television) or for a significant contribution or achievement. Anonymity – even plain privacy like J.D. Salinger’s, which drove everybody nuts - simply isn’t something we accept as a culture.

I set out to create a believable, likable, quirky original heroine, who is a renowned and sought-after dominatrix specializing in rope bondage. On the face of it, Dominique would be repellent to many people, who would have negative preconceptions about her profession – and they might then project those reactions on me, her creator.  My pseudonym protects me and the successful non-writing career I have, insulating me. Some people who know me in my other life would be dismayed to learn that I had written a shocking erotic political thriller. and also how those same people are protected from reality and consequences of their actions, and facts and projections about the trickery that goes on in the political arena. Who am I? How do I know details about the sexual predilections of the High and Mighty? Is this my personal world? Are other peoples’ identities in jeopardy if I reveal who I am?

Anonymity raises curiosity in readers (Is this real? Is the author a dominatrix herself? Do things like this really happen?) while also creating personal and creative freedom for the writer. There are readers who are convinced that this novel could have been written only by someone with vast personal knowledge of BDSM andThe Lifestyle (as it is referred to by those in it). I won’t reply to that, but I will say I believe that regardless of one’s own experience, education or passion for a topic that the more knowledge and detail a writer has about a place, period or character, the better the writing will be.

My pseudonym has allowed me to discover the profound value to the creative process of having one’s ego removed from a book – it’s actually quite liberating to have one’s persona removed from the equation.  I think the cult of the writer as celebrity does nothing for the creative spirit of the author: it shifts the focus away from the printed page and misplaces it in showing photos of an author dressed a certain way in a particular setting, with interviews attempting to delve into as much of a writer’s life as she will allow.  I think only good can come from a little more mystery about the creative process and more emphasis on the written word, not who wrote it and what kind of car she drives.

In the end of the day it comes down to The Work - the words on paper, the images, ideas, characters, that are created – and whether the book successfully transports the reader. Nothing else should matter. The book should stand on its own, quite apart from the author and the particulars of who she is and how she lives her life.  I hope THE KNOT ARTIST will succeed in doing this and I can quietly enjoy peoples’ appreciation of it while continuing the creative process in the next book of what will be a trilogy about Dominique.
Give away Give away Giveaway!!

The author is giving away two paperback copies of THE KNOT ARTIST for US residents and two e-book copies for international bloggers! 

All you have to do is follow me, leave a comment with your name and email or if you don't want to leave your email, just comment and send me your email here : with the subject "India Wilson give away". This give away will end on March 14 and the winner will be announced on March 15.


Thursday, February 24, 2011

Follow Friday and Blogger Hop

Okay, time for the weekly BLOG HOP!
Visit Parajunkee's view and Crazy For Books for the linky . . . .

This week's question:

Share your current fav television show! Tell us a bit about it..

Glee!! I love the show because of Will and Finn! ;) I also love Brittany - she's better than Rachel. She's great when she played Britney S.

Question of the week:
 "Do you ever wish you would have named your blog something different?"

Nope. I love the name of my blog, wouldn't change it for any other name.
Happy Friday!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Book Review: Fangs for the Memories by Kathy Love

Fangs for the Memories
by Kathy Love

Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher : Brava (September 1, 2007)

Ratings: ★ ★ ★ ★

My thoughts:

This is the first book in the Young Brothers series. Fangs for the Memories tells the story of Rhys Young, the oldest vampire of the Young brothers who saves Jane from an attempted rape. He was about to head home but was attacked by another vampire and as a result of this attack, he woke up with an amnesia. Sebastian, Rhys brother upon learning of this situation, asked Jane to stay until his brother recovers from amnesia.

A vampire with amnesia? I liked this book and the love story of Rhys and Jane. I love the dialogue especially when Rhys is talking to Sebastian. I was laughing every time they're together. I enjoyed reading this book though I have to mention one thing I didn't like in this book. The sex scenes are so over the top - never ending. I've read tons of books with mild to wild sex. Most of the time, they're needed in the story but here, I didn't think it was needed. I was already enjoying the story! I had to skim a couple of sex scenes because I got tired of reading them. 

Overall, this is recommended for paranormal romance lovers but if you are not into non-stop sex, then probably you shouldn't read this book. 

About the book:

Oh, Brother!

I'm watching my brother swagger through our New York City apartment...smiling. Rhys, the detached, surly man who turned brooding into an art form. But he's not brooding now. No, he's practically threatening to pistol whip me for shaking hands with the beautiful, half-dressed creature named Jane who just tried to sneak out of his bedroom. Weird. Brother Grim has a sex drive?
That's not all that has me freaked out. Something terrible happened last night, something that made Rhys break his own rule and save the life of a mortal. Trouble is he doesn't remember anything from the past two hundred years. Like that he's a vampire, not a Regency viscount with an English accent.

All I know is this mortal woman has managed to touch my brother's frozen heart, and I, Sebastian Young, will do whatever it takes to help him keep her...  - Amazon
About the author:

I started writing romances when I was in junior high. The heroines were my friends, and the heroes were guys you may have heard of such as the Beatles, the Monkees and other various rock stars and actors. I even wrote a romance where Steven Tyler of Aerosmith was the hero and worked at a carnival, which I think is pretty accurate. If he hadn't made it as a rock star, he'd definitely be a carnie. I was the heroine, of course.

I was also lucky enough to have a best friend who also loved to write. We spend many nights laughing and plotting and writing our wonderful, romantic and completely implausible love stories. (Except for the Steven Tyler story, which as I said, was completely plausible.)

Even though I loved to write, I never really believed I would get published. After all, in the small mill town where I grew up in the mountains of Maine, we have a saying, "You can't get there from here." And that was how I felt about the publishing world.... Read more

Monday, February 21, 2011

In My Mailbox

IMM  (In My Mailbox) is a weekly meme hosted and created by Kristi at The Story Siren.

This is a way to share the books we received for review, bought, and also books borrowed from the library.


Won from Kate of Reads, Reviews, Recommends

Received this book from unknown sender. . . 


DragonLance Chronicles

What's in your mailbox? Please leave your link and I will check  it out.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Give away Winner: No Rest for the Wicca by Toni LoTempio

This book give away is now closed.

Congratulations to:

Crystal ♥

I will be sending you a confirmation email in a while. Thank you to Toni LoTempio for this giveaway!! If you didn't win please check out other contests here in Bookingly Yours

Guest Author and Give away: Ami Blackwelder

Eloquent Enraptures and author Ami Blackwelder proudly presents the six part science fiction/paranormal romance saga! Like nothing you have ever experienced!

                           Shifters of 2040:
“I’m pregnant.  Her eyes peered over the edge of the cloth and confronted her mirrored reflection with that truth.  I’m pregnant…by a SHIFTER.  Oh, god!”

In “The Shifters of 2040,” Scientist Melissa Marn finds her world swirling on its axis with that one revelation.  Shifters — a sentient alien species of light — look to Earth for refuge.  In doing so, both shifters and humans are forced to confront prejudice, betrayal, adversity and oppression.

Methodical scientist, Melissa Marn, and her coworker, Dr. Bruce Wilder, conduct experiments on the shifters.  Through her pregnancy, she becomes more compassionate and humane and finds herself defending the very species she’s supposed to eradicate. 

One of the hybrids, Diamond, falls in love with Keenan, a soldier trained to kill her. Between the four, the reader is led from conflict to resolution, from despair to hope, from loneliness to love.

Much of the book’s originality lies in the shifters, common characters in science fiction, but whose origins are rarely explained. In this series, their alien DNA allows them to metamorphose into not just wolves, but a variety of animals. As the plot unfolds, the shifters discover they can have children with humans — hybrids.

Strengths of the novel include the complex characters, its writing style of poetic prose and rich description, and the well developed, thought-provoking, yet highly entertaining plot.

This fast paced book will appeal to the young adult and adult market. It fits nicely into the paranormal romance and science fiction romance genres and would make a great movie, a captivating TV series and an intriguing video game.

Readers will enjoy the fresh approach and original concept of the world thirty years from now, and will find the characters come to life in their minds long after they read “The End.”

                          Shifter Evolutions video and purchase options at her website.

                                  The Shifters of 2040

Character Interview: This interview will be conducted for the characters of the Shifters of 2040. Scientist Melissa Marn and the hybrid Diamond.

Do you always love what you can’t have?
Melissa Marn: The Smithsonian, Bruce Wilder. I guess I do. But my life is controlled by the SCM now, by my father and General Raul. They decided this fate for me. If I had my way, I’d run off with Bruce somewhere far away...
Diamond: I fell in love with the enemy on accident. I didn’t plan to love Keenan, the military soldier sworn to kill me and my kind. He didn’t plan to love me. We just happened.

If you were a quality?
Melissa Marn: The River. I am methodical like waves. I do the job needed to be done, whatever the cost of erosion, and flow continually. Close to the Earth, but I am cold, because the SCM coaxed me since fifteen, and trained me since twenty-five.
Diamond: The Hawk. This is my other half, the beast inside of me, that the humans fear. I fly above the world and watch. Silent, and steady, but strong.

If you were a flaw?
Melissa Marn: Ice. I am cold, and hard. And too easily I melt and conform to the shape I am enclosed in, that prisoner the SCM has built around my life.
Diamond: The Heart. I feel too much. Emotions explode inside of me, and I sense my heart will be the end of me one day. If I could only feel less...

Do you always walk on the moral slippery slope?
Melissa Marn: It’s my job! It’s all I know. And if I didn’t do it, someone else would. What then?  I know the shifters are more than the SCM tells us they are. They must feel something. But what? My curiosity and scientific training drives me. I have to find answers to my questions. I have to perform my duty!
Diamond: But I love him! I know being with him draws danger to my kind, to my family. My sister. But he would never betray me, willingly. I know he loves me too. And though I am sworn to stay away from him, from all SCM, my heart dominates my head.

Favorite food?
Melissa Marn: The Italian restaurant Little Milan. Bruce and I have shared many discussions, heated arguments, and romantic memories there. 
Diamond: Mice...I am half hawk.

Give away Give away Giveaway!!

The author is giving away two ebook copies of The Shifters of 2040. 
All you have to do is follow me, leave a comment with your name and email or if you don't want to leave your email, just comment and send me your email here : with the subject "Ami Blackwelder give away". This give away will end on March 7 and the winners will be announced on March 8.


Thursday, February 17, 2011

Happy Friday! :)

Okay, time for the weekly BLOG HOP!
Visit Parajunkee's view for the linky . . . .

This week's question:

If you are a fan of Science Fiction what is your favorite book? If you haven't read Science Fiction before...any inkling to? Anything catch your eye?

Starship Troopers by Robert A. Heinlin! 
I never read the book but I loved the movie sooo much!

Book Review: Immortalis Hunters & Prey by Katie Salidas

Title: Immortalis Hunters & Prey Book 2
Author: Katie Salidas
Paperback: 346 pages
Publisher: Rising Sign Books; (December 14, 2010)


★ ★ ★ ★

My thoughts:

This book is a follow up to the Immortalis Carpe Noctem.

Alyssa, with the help of her ancient vampire mate, Lysander, has finally accepted that her mortal life is over. She's now living with him and his other "children", the Peregrinus clan. One evening while hunting, she thought she saw Santino Vitale, the most fearsome hunter of Acta Sanctorum (vampire hunters). She informed Lysander of this but he convinced her that Santino was dead or if he's not dead, it would take a lot of time and blood for him to heal his wounds. Alyssa became restless and she's having "daymares" because of this. She couldn't concentrate as Lysander's mate or even as a vampire. She really believes Santino is out there waiting for her to make a wrong move. And she's right! Santino is indeed alive! She saw him again while hunting and this time, she couldn't go home, it's not safe for her vampire family. So she fled and went to the only other place she knew. The coffee shop where she used to hang out on a daily basis when she's still human.

And that was a BIG mistake! Her human best friend Fallon saw her and she could not hide things from her. She had to tell Fallon about her new life as a vampire. And now she broke one of the vampire laws - revealing herself to a mortal. Now things are more complicated than ever. Santino is hunting her and even if she escaped Santino, Lysander will surely be mad at her for breaking the vampire law.

The second installment is great, though the first book was better than this. This is packed with action, suspense, twist, and a lot of romance! I loved the whole idea of this series. I was hooked after the first book. I think I'm in "lust" with Lysander. I love Lysander for being a rough and tough vampire. I want to have the third book now! Both of Katie Salidas' books kept me up late a couple of nights. I recommend this series for fans of urban fantasy and paranormal romance novels. Try the first book and you'll love it just like me! 

About the book:

Becoming a vampire saved Alyssa from death, but the price was high: the loss of everything and everyone attached to her mortal life. She s still learning to cope when a surprise confrontation with Santino Vitale, the Acta Sanctorum s most fearsome hunter, sends her fleeing back to the world she once knew, and Fallon, the friend she s missed more than anything. - Goodreads

Alyssa breaks vampire law by revealing her new, true self to her old friend, a fact which causes strong division in the group that should support her most: her clan.
Worse yet, her revelation entangles Fallon in the struggle between vampires and hunters and The Acta Sanctorum is ready to attack again, with a new army of hybrid creations: the Frenzy Soldiers.

If Alyssa hopes to survive and keep her mortal friend safe, she ll have to be willing to make a deal with the enemy, and regain her clan s support. It will take everyone working together in a precarious truce to fight against the Acta Sanctorum s new threat.

About the author:

The youngest of four children, Katie has always had a desire to entertain. Since, early childhood, she's dreamed fantastical characters and scribbled them into pages of various journals and notebooks. Taking an interest in vampires, she devoured every book, featuring those blood sucking creatures, in any genre she could find. It was only natural that a love of reading vampire stories, turned into a love to write them. Katie is also a Las Vegas native, having grown up in the famed City of Sin. She loves to feature it as a recurring setting for many of her stories. - Amazon

Note: I received a review copy of this book free from the author, Katie Salidas. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Movie Review: Let Me In

Let Me In

Director: Matt Reeves
Stars: Kodi Smit-McPhee
            Chloe Moretz 
            Richard Jenkins

Ratings: ★ ★ ★ ★

My thoughts:

The movie is based on Let The Right One In novel by a Swedish writer John Ajvide Lindqvist.

The book was first made into a Swedish film in 2008 and a re-make - an English film was released in 2010 based on the original Swedish film and the book. I was not aware of this until after seeing the movie. I read that this re-make is absolutely different from the book (like changing names and the gender of the main character and even the story!). I also read the book has a lot of violence and pedophilia scenes. Yay, it's a BIG no for me. I'm not really into books like that. Anyway, the review below is for the re-make, and I was glad it wasn't as dark and disturbing as in the book/original film.

The story is about a bullied young boy, Owen who befriends a young female vampire, Abby who lives in in secrecy with her guardian. When Owen met Abby, he didn't know that Abby is a vampire. Though he's already having suspicions that something is wrong because he never sees Abby when he goes to school, or precisely in the morning. He only sees her after school, or at night. Owen, not knowing what Abby is, they became very good friends. When Owen finally admitted that he loves Abby, she later revealed herself in front of him.

When I read the movie review - or the review of the re-make, it sounded  like a movie that I would enjoy and yes, I did! I love the cat-crawling style of vampire here. Liked the idea of a vampire having a guardian that gets blood for her. I thought the plot was original and I was impressed by the twist in the story. I'm a vampire-addict and sooo good to see fresh vampire story. You might want to see this movie, it wasn't THAT great, but still a fresh vampire story that you will enjoy. 

About the book:

Oskar and Eli. In very different ways, they were both victims. Which is why, against the odds, they became friends. And how they came to depend on one another, for life itself. Oskar is a 12 year old boy living with his mother on a dreary housing estate at the city's edge. He dreams about his absentee father, gets bullied at school, and wets himself when he's frightened. Eli is the young girl who moves in next door. She doesn't go to school and never leaves the flat by day. She is a 200 year old vampire, forever frozen in childhood, and condemned to live on a diet of fresh blood. - Goodreads

About the original film:

Lonely, 12-year-old Oskar is regularly bullied by his stronger classmates. A new friendship develops when Eli, a pale, serious young girl who only comes out at night moves in next door. Coinciding with her arrival is a series of inexplicable disappearances and murders. As Oskar becomes more aware of Eli’s tragic plight, he cannot forsake her. However, Eli knows that to continue living, she must keep relocating. But when Oskar faces his darkest hour, Eli returns to defend him the only way she can...

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Happy Hearts Day!!

I hope everyone has a wonderful Valentines day!!
Saw this funny post from a friend in Facebook:

For those with lovers, Happy Valentines Day!
For those who are single, Happy Independence Day!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Book Review: Spiral X by JJ Westendarp

Title: Spiral X
Author: J.J. Westendarp
Format: Kindle Edition
File Size: 417 KB
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services


★ ★ ★ ★

My thoughts:
The main lead character, Cheryl Erickson is a vampire hunter. She's a strong and confident vampire hunter. She's good at what she does but she can also be "soft" when it comes to her family and friends. I liked her character. I also liked that she has a lot of friends with her, especially Tank. I really enjoyed the time when Cheryl is with her fellow hunter, Tank.  I loved it when they're together!   Awww - why not Mr. Westendarp? Sorry spoiler :) 

I liked the plot and the twist in the story - I definitely didn't expect it. I was laughing at myself for not "getting" it. This may not be the same level as Riley Jenson and Anita Blake but Cheryl is absolutely a new character which I believe readers will love. This is an action-packed book that will keep you interested the whole time.

About the book:

Cheryl Erikson is a Vampire Hunter with a problem. A dangerous new drug named Plast has found its way onto the streets of Dallas. She would prefer to let the DEA and local law enforcement handle everything, but since the dealers also happen to be vampires, she has no choice but to step in and put a stop to it.

With the help of her best friend Virgil and a fellow Hunter named Tank, Cheryl must work to eradicate Plast from the streets of Dallas. It's a task that becomes more difficult as she comes under the gun, quite literally, from a contract out on her head. Coupled with a nosy police detective looking to peg her for a triple homicide, and a sudden interest in her activities from a powerful vampire recently arrived in the area, it's enough to force her to accept help from the least likely of sources, a mysterious Hunter named Rev. Through him, everything she thinks she knows, and everything she stands for, is challenged in ways she never imagined. - Amazon

About the author:

J. J. Westendarp lives in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex with his wife, two kids, and two basset hounds. He is an unapologetic Dallas Cowboys fan, loves to game when he gets a chance, and has an unhealthy obsession with Star Wars.

Note: I received a review copy of this e-book free from the author, J.J. Westendarp. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Guest Author and Give away: Commander Pants

Hi there everybody.

I’m Commander Pants, and for 20 I worked as a mental health outreach counselor, helping a mostly schizophrenic population survive independently. These were some of the most amazingly original human beings that you could ever hope to meet, each with their own way of seeing the world. Or, to put it another way, they each had their own delusions. This got me thinking, what if they were right and the rest of us “sane” people were the ones that had it all wrong? It’s that thought that led me to write Whom God Would Destroy, a whimsical novel about what happens when “God” returns to Earth to goof on humanity once more. As you might guess, the book is a wee bit satirical and tips a few sacred cows along the way, questioning not only organized religion and psychiatry, but also the very nature of reality. The theme that ties everything together is to always be open to possibility, something that I truly think could make for a better world. Consider for a moment how open to wonder an infant is.

 My parents told me that one of my favorite toys in my pre-toddler days was an empty cigarette box. It would occupy me for hours as I put something inside, closed the lid, and then a moment later opened it to find it still there! Wow!! Sadly, these days that parlor trick doesn’t do much for me, and that’s because I know that if I close something in a box, it will be there when I reopen it.

But, what if we could turn back the clock on all of our preconceived notions and experience every event through infant eyes? Try this: the next time your daughter knows that there’s a flesh-sucking monster in her closet, don’t rush to assure her that she’s wrong – hell, who knows, maybe she’s onto something. True, it may not do much for her sleeping habits, but it will certainly add some spice to your life. (If you don’t have a kid, perhaps you could borrow a neighbor’s for this exercise.)

Preconceived notions can also get in the way of the truth. Years ago I had a friend who was a psychiatrist, and he related this story that’s always stuck with me.

One night, when he was still a resident, he was in the ER after having worked for 20 hours straight. That’s when a woman was brought in hysterically screaming that she needed someone to save her family from the mad doctor who was holding them hostage while doing cancer experiments on them. Well, this was a no-brainer. He signed her commitment papers as “delusional” and had her shipped of to Bellevue.

Two nights later the next hysterical person was brought to the ER. The cops had grabbed this nutcase after he leapt through a second story window. They were sure he needed medicating because his story was so off the wall: get this…a doctor was holding his family hostage and doing cancer experiments on them! Well, soon there was a little musical chairs going on at Bellevue, as a woman was being released and an oncologist was taking her place.

I guess all I’m trying to say is that life is, to quote the Beatles, one big Magical Mystery Tour, as long as keep an open mind. So, the next time Henny Penny tells you that the sky is falling, you might just want to look up. And the next time that magician pulls a rabbit out of his hat, maybe you shouldn’t be so surprised.

Visit Commander Pants website here:

Give away Give away Giveaway!!

The author is giving away one paperback copy of WHOM GOD WOULD DESTROY! This give away is open only for US, Canada and UK.

All you have to do is follow me, leave a comment with your name and email or if you don't want to leave your email, just comment and send me your email here : with the subject "Commander Pants give away". This give away will end on February 24 and the winner will be announced on February 25.


Thursday, February 10, 2011

Happy Friday!!

Okay, time for the weekly BLOG HOP!
Visit Parajunkee's view for the linky . . . .

This week's question:

What is your favorite romance hero-type?
Stereotype wise. Do you like the strong silent type or the brute macho man?

Yay! brute macho, rough and tough man.

Happy Friday!!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Book Review: Immortalis Carpe Noctem by Katie Salidas

Immortalis : Carpe Noctem Book 1

Author: Katie Salidas
Paperback: 346 pages
Publisher: Rising Sign Books; 1st edition (March 2, 2010)


*see below*

My thoughts:

This book is hard to rate. As you can see from this blog, I rarely rate a book 5-star  unless I absolutely loved the book. I wanted to give this a 5-star rating because I truly enjoyed, or even maybe loved it. However, it's not the same level as my love for Vampire Academy and other books in the 5 stars category. So how do I rate this book? Let me try.

What I loved in this book was the story of a newborn vampire. A lot of vampire books out there goes straight to the "after" stage but rarely we get to read stories of a newborn vampire. Saying goodbye to your life, friends, family wasn't easy. And wanting to be a good vampire wasn't easy as well. When Alyssa learned that she's been turned into a vampire, she could not decide whether she should be thankful to Lysander for saving her from mortal death or she should hate Lysander because she didn't want to be a killer (vampires here kill for blood). She didn't want this but she had no choice. Lysander threatens to kill her if she's not happy with her new life. So there's no choice but to accept her newfound immortality. She realized then that she didn't want to die and she could be a good vampire. Alyssa decided to only kill bad guys - like murderers, rapists, and killers.  This was also her way of getting back to those two rapists who had brutally attacked and stabbed her. Alyssa is an interesting character, I feel her pain of losing her life and her friends for this immortality. As for Lysander! Wow! OH MY! He reminds me of Quinn, the ancient vampire in the Riley Jenson Guardian series. I realized I have this thing for ancient vamps! 

I also love how the author used Greek myths for the Immortalis series. I love Greek myths ever since I read Edith Hamilton's Mythology book. They're fun to read and that's the book I can read every day and still love it.  Now, back to the book, it was said there that vampires came from the Keres who mated with a mortal, creating the first vampire ever to walk the earth. The author did great in researching her materials for her series.

Now, what I didn't like was the ending of the book. This is a series so I expected a lot of OMG moments. But no - nothing like that. It was good but I wasn't quite satisfied with it.  Overall, it was a fantastic read,  ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ for the storyline, characters and settings but only ★ ★ ★ ★ for the writing style and the end of the book.

About the book:

Explore the emotional upheaval that is the transformation from human to vampire.

Bleeding to death after brutal mugging on the campus of UNLV, Twenty-five year old Alyssa, is rescued by the cold and aloof, vampire, Lysander. Taking pity on her, he shares the gift-and curse-of immortality. She awakens as a vampire and is soon devastated by harsh realities of her new way of life: An unyielding thirst for blood as well as the loss of her friends, her independence, and her humanity.

As if having her humanity stripped away was not enough to make life interesting, Alyssa finds out her "turning", did not go unnoticed by the rest of undead society. Old enemies; an ancient sect of vampire hunters, known as the Acta Sanctorum, as well as a powerful Vampire mistress, each set plans in motion to destroy both Alyssa and Lysander.

Only by accepting her new-found immortality, seizing the night, will Alyssa hope to survive. She and Lysander must fight together against two sets of enemies bent on destroying them both. - Goodreads

About the author:

The youngest of four children, Katie has always had a desire to entertain. Since, early childhood, she's dreamed fantastical characters and scribbled them into pages of various journals and notebooks. Taking an interest in vampires, she devoured every book, featuring those blood sucking creatures, in any genre she could find. It was only natural that a love of reading vampire stories, turned into a love to write them. Katie is also a Las Vegas native, having grown up in the famed City of Sin. She loves to feature it as a recurring setting for many of her stories. - Amazon

Note: I received a review copy of this book free from the author, Katie Salidas. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
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