Saturday, October 3, 2015

Massive Giveaway News!

 
Hi all! Just wanted to pop in and let you guys know there's a HUGE giveaway going on over at my personal blog which can be found here: http://tempestchani.blogspot.com/2015/09/huge-giveaway.html

This is a chance to win paperback copies of pretty much every one of my books, as well as other cool prizes like jewelry, notebooks, stickers, etc. There are six different prize packs, so six chances of winning, and the giveaway doesn't end until December! Some of the ways to enter allow you to do it more than once, so there are lots of ways to stay active and better your odds!

If you check out the link, then you'll see it's a fairly long post with rules and descriptions about the prize packs, but the most important one is to leave a comment letting me know which prize you'd want if you won! People who don't do this will unfortunately be disqualified, because I don't want to end up giving someone something they don't really want. That wouldn't be fair to the person who won (it's less exciting to win something you're not interested in!) or to the person who really wanted to win it!

So, if you want to enter that way here, feel free. You can leave the comment below (because I've included the giveaway) or you can follow the link provided above which will lead you straight to my blog and the original giveaway. This option might be easier because a lot of the other ways to win involve interaction with my author blog, such as answering a poll or leaving a question for one of my characters in the Ask Away section.

Another way of winning is by answering a one or more questions about my teen paranormal book, Unhinged. To make this easier for everyone (and more fun) just for reading this post you can already win something because the book is currently being offered for FREE here: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/303574

Also, the release date for my other book, Bone Deep, has finally been set so head on over to my blog to check out the details on that as well! :) There's going to be a giveaway for that too, currently starting here before making its way over to my blog so that you can sign up for here below!

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Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Forbidden Surrender (Forever, #1) by Priscila West

Review by Tempest.

Blurb:

“What gives you a thrill Kristen?”

The minute I saw Vincent Sorenson, I knew he was trouble. Billionaire. Bad boy. And dangerously sexy. He was everything I craved, and nothing I needed.

Unfortunately, I couldn’t just avoid him. The higher ups at my company decided they needed his business, and I was on the team to bring him in. Vincent Sorenson didn’t seem as interested in business as he was in me, but I knew that was a door better left unopened. If I got involved with him, it would only unearth the pain I spent years trying to bury.

I thought I had it under control, but I seriously underestimated Vincent’s seductive charm and silver-tongue. I would soon find out how delicious it would feel to let myself fall into this forbidden surrender.


* * *

I was pleasantly surprised by this one. I got it off of NetGalley and was honestly expecting another Fifty Shades wannabe. While this genre/concept has been done many times now, I felt Forbidden Surrender was a fresh twist on what could have been a stale story. I really liked both lead characters, which doesn't happen often for me in these types of books, and found myself more and more interested in their pasts. Vincent was....wow. Those three letters pretty much sum it up. I'm the type of girl who's into tattoos, which we can get a lot of in books, but the added nipple piercings were a fantastic touch. I also really enjoyed the tiny explanation of how/why got them. Instead of it just being one of those details where the author's like, "he has them cause they're hot!" she actually took the time to work it in there so that it actually acted as character building. From that single (probably only two line) explanation, we see and understand a lot about who Julian is as a person. I loved how independent Kristen was. It's totally believable why she doesn't want to cross that line with him, and why she eventually does. This was a fun, quick and light read with tons of romance and plot. I was expecting smut, smut, smut, and don't get me wrong, there are a few sex scenes, but for the most part, the author really takes the time to draw you in and get you to care about these characters and their situation. The only remotely bad thing I can say is that it ended in a way that made me feel this was more the first part to a serial than the first book of a series. HOWEVER, that's more a personal opinion than anything, and in no way detracts from how great the story is. Highly recommend, and started on the second already!




Don't forget to check out the huge giveaway going on over at my author's blog!!! The link can be found on the left sidebar! ;)

Monday, September 28, 2015

Twist Me (Twist Me, #1) by Anna Zaires


Review by Tempest.

Side note: I read a different book by this author last week titled, Close Liaison's, and only gave it 2 stars. There were a lot of things that I didn't like about it (like the implication that a vegan diet is hands down the healthiest, and the female lead being an idiot) BUT there were parts about it I liked enough that I decided to give another of this authors books a try, albeit from a different series (though I may eventually revisit the second book of the Krinar Chronicles which I did buy). This book was GREAT. I probably won't be reviewing Close Liaison's, which is why I just wanted to give a heads up for anyone who checked and saw I'd read it and gave it 2 where as I'm giving this book by the same author 5. :) Ok, now to why you're really here!




Blurb:


***New Adult Dark Erotic Novel***
Kidnapped. Taken to a private island.
I never thought this could happen to me. I never imagined one chance meeting on the eve of my eighteenth birthday could change my life so completely.
Now I belong to him. To Julian. To a man who is as ruthless as he is beautiful – a man whose touch makes me burn. A man whose tenderness I find more devastating than his cruelty.
My captor is an enigma. I don’t know who he is or why he took me. There is a darkness inside him – a darkness that scares me even as it draws me in.
My name is Nora Leston, and this is my story.
WARNING: This is NOT a traditional romance. It contains disturbing subject matter, including themes of questionable consent and Stockholm Syndrome, as well as graphic sexual content. This is a work of fiction intended for a mature, 18+ audience only. The author neither endorses nor condones this type of behavior.


* * *


To be perfectly honest, I didn't think I'd like this book as much as I did. I was expecting a whinny, annoying, insta-love female character who gets kidnapped but then falls for the guy over night. More than half the time with these types of stories that's what happens, am I right? Not so with this. Sure, there's a jump, so there are a few months between point "I totally hate him" to point "I totally...don't know anymore" but surprisingly it worked, and helped keep things believable. I'll admit I'm into these kinds of stories (obviously) but more often than not I find myself extremely disappointed by how implausible the addiction and love aspect plays in. I'm a seriously independent woman, so reading about other woman being abusing and then over night deciding they're ok with it because the guys just has the most amazing sex moves on the planet...pretty much makes me want to yack. The only reason I'm rambling on and bringing this up is because there isn't any of that in this book. I kept reading, waiting until that moment where I could hate Nora (yes, I expected that to happen that much) and it just never came. There was an incident with a vase I thought was pretty stupid, but in retrospect, hey, can't blame a girl for trying. The details were rich in this book, just enough to set the scene yet still not beating us over the head. And while Beth annoyed me, and actually even her friendship with Beth, that whole storyline tied up nicely. And Julian....I love that he was honest about who and what he was. He's not a good guy, he's not the worst guy, but he's pretty bad. He doesn't try to hide that, which is great. Nora was the same way, she dealt with things in a believable manner, and I loved how she was able to admit to herself that she knew her feelings were messed up. Because of that, I was able to jump on board with her. I found myself nodding my head along to her inner monologue being like, "Yes, you're right. This is messed up. You have been mind fucked into feeling this way. But I am right there with you." You're sort of torn between wanting to be able to say this is screwy and wrong, but you find yourself being drawn into Julian as well. It's understandable, given she's been there for fifteen months with only him to rely on. It was the perfect mix of psychological and erotic. And it was erotic. Really erotic. One thing I really appreciate about this author, (because I read the first of the Krinar Chronicles, too) which might seem weird, is that she's honest about the whole losing ones virginity thing. Another pet peeve of mine is when it get sugar coated over. The girl is being forced to have sex for the first time, with someone who is way above average size, and ends up...being totally fine? Yeah right. There's none of that fantasy land bullshit here. Losing her v-card sucks for Nora, like it would for pretty much everyone in her situation. The book starting out honestly like that was helped keep me reading. I ended up liking this book more than Close Liaisons even, I just feel Nora is a much better lead character. Her choices are smart ones, even when they're desperate where as I felt the lead in Krinar just acted on desperation and didn't really think. Don't get me wrong, I liked it, but I loved this. Will definitely be reading the second one asap!



Be sure to check out the huge giveaway going on over at my author blog! The link can be found on the left sidebar! :)

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Captured Miracle (Captured Miracle, #1) by Alannah Carbonneau

Review by Tempest.

Be sure to check out the giveaway for Unbound in the post below which ends tonight!!!

Blurb:

Sometimes the darkest of hearts are the most blinding. Not because of their light, but because of their suffocating endlessness. The dark abyss of their possession claims you before you’re even aware of the capture.

Love is not linear. There is no timeline in which the emotion blooms. Sometimes it is a slow succession of events where one soul learns another and sometimes it’s quick. Sometimes it’s like lightning. Possessive.

That’s what Calix was to me. He infused himself within my life – my mind – my body – and my heart. Until he possessed my soul. And then he shattered it all.

The worst part of it all was that he owned me. Completely. And it only took him four days.

What started out as an act of revenge quickly becomes so much more. After years of plotting and two years of watching Nova, Calix takes her. In the dead of the night, three strange men in her room, tugging her from her bed, wake Nova. Terrified of forcing the men to act on their threats to harm her mother and sisters, Nova agrees to allow them to cart her from the safety of her home.

She never expected they would lead her to Calix. A dark and captivating man determined to have her as his wife – and every other way. As Nova tries to keep Calix from pushing his way past her barriers, his determination to capture her heart in the same way he captured her body grows. In his quest for her heart, Calix pushes her past her barriers and tests her every limit.

When her heart softens, the reason for the game of revenge turns very real and Calix is forced to tell Nova just why he took her. Only, the truth will harden the heart that had softened against him.

But Calix still won’t let Nova go.

Until the end of time, she is his.


*** This is an erotic romance. Captured Miracle is the first novel in what will be a three book series. This novel does end in a cliffhanger.
  

* * *

Honestly, the insta-love was a bit much, and it started to really ruin it for me there towards the late middle/end, HOWEVER, for some reason I still really liked the story. It was a quick read, and while there were a ton of grammatical errors (such as commas instead of periods) it didn't detract from the story as much as one would think. I found I could easily enough look past them.

Nova was a bit whiney, and then annoying. Given her circumstances, the crying I totally understood, but she was guilty over ridiculous things, like being snappy with the grandmother of her kidnapper. Hello? The woman knows you were kidnapped, and she's doing nothing. You deserve to be a little rude at the very least. She was also a bit too naïve. If she really reads as many romance novels as she claims, then she'd be able to figure out half of Calix's "vague" (not really) suggestions. Instead, she almost never gets it. It's pretty frustration, and it makes it hard to relate to her, or feel sorry for her. Not to mention, four days is just way to fast for her to fall in love and brush under the rug what he's done. I would have preferred a time jump to that at least, where we're told in the next chapter a week has passed or whatever. Anything would have been better. I don't care how hot he is, he kidnapped her, threatened to KILL her family, and has forced her into doing things that embarrass the crap out of her. Even with Stockholm syndrome being taken into consideration, that's way too quick.

Still, three stars, because like I said, I kept reading anyway, and there was never a moment, even as frustrated and eye roll worthy as Nova became, where I wanted to put the book down and walk away. As a quick read that's honest about what it is in the blurb, I'd say worth it to anyone wanting to check it out.

Reading Updates:

59.0% "That's idiotic. Why be ashamed? The kidnapped you"
             
62.0%
"That happened waaaaay too quickly. Technically it hasn't even been a few days."             
             
 
64.0%
"This is ridiculous...."

 

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Unbound Release/Giveaway!!!

Post by Tempest:

My book, Unbound, is finally being released! It's the third book of my Underworld saga (after this there's only one more to go!) is coming out the 16th! In honor of it, there's a giveaway currently being offered where you can win either copies of all three books in the series so far, or a copy of the new book when it comes out! There are a bunch of ways to enter, including leaving a comment below here or heading over to my personal blog (the link of which can be found on the left) to take part in my Ask Away page, a place where you can ask specific characters questions. :) Here's the blurb for the book for any of you who don't know about it!

Add it to your Goodreads! https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25807738-unbound

Blurb:

It's been six months since Spencer made the deal with the god of the Underworld: a year of spending nights below. Now that she's finally given into her feelings for Hadrian, she hopes her second life will start getting less complicated. Of course, considering her new world is filled with Reapers, demons, and malicious spirits, that doesn't seem likely. What does surprise her is the way her ex-soul mate Micah St. James is treating her. Ever since they broke up he's been giving her the cold shoulder, and the more she worries about where they stand, the more she ends up putting a wedge between her and Hadrian. She chose the god for a reason, now she just has to keep that in mind while they fight off the attacks of an evil Persephone hell bent on tearing them apart. By any means necessary. She's already lost Micah. She'd die--again--if the original Gravewalker got her way and managed to steal Hadrian as well.

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Darken the Stars (Kricket, #3) by Amy A. Bartol


Review by Tempest.

Sorry I've been away guys! We're looking for someone else interested in joining the blog so that a lot of the review gaps we leave can be filled, if interested, let us know!!!

Also, I didn't review the first two books of this series because they were so good, I honestly didn't want to stop reading to take the time! That being said, they really are amazing, and the only reason I can think of not to read them is because the ending of the series is so....well, if you read the review you'll see.

The third book itself was also very good, up until the last two chapters. Honestly, those last two ruined what was a phenomenal series, that also got me interested in giving the scifi genre another chance. :/ Anyway, to the review!

Blurb:

 Kyon Ensin finally has what he’s always wanted: possession of Kricket Hollowell, the priestess who foresees the future. Together, their combined power will be unrivaled. Kricket, however, doesn’t crave the crown of Ethar—she has an unbreakable desire to live life on her own terms, a life that she desperately wants to share with her love, Trey Allairis.

As conspiracies rage in the war for Ethar, Kricket’s so-called allies want to use her as a spy. Even those held closest cannot be trusted—including Astrid, her sister, and Giffen, a member of a mysterious order with a hidden agenda. But Kricket’s resolve will not allow her to be used as anyone’s pawn, even as the Brotherhood sharpens its plans to cut out her heart.

As the destiny prophesied by her mother approaches, Kricket will backtrack through her fiery future to reshape it. For she knows one thing above all else: the only person she can truly count on is herself.
  

***

I feel like I just got shot with a freston.

So, this review is going to be more of a rant, which is why I generally don't write one until at least the day after reading a book, BUT I just...can't. Because of this, heads up, it's riddled with spoilers, so if you don't feel like listening to me rant on, and you don't want to know what happens with this book, stop reading now. I loved this book up until the ending. The ending ruined, for me personally, not only this book, but the previous ones in the series as well.

I also feel like it's important to mention, that if this turns out not to be the last book (which is what it says on the author's blog) I will rescind MOST of the comments to follow. But I mean, a book about Kricket. Not a spin-off series where we glimpse her and she happens to be living a life of leasure off on some beach somewhere (which actually, now that I'm thinking about it, would ALSO be a sucky ending), but an actual book about what happens next and how all of this can be fixed. Doesn't even have to be a full fledged novel, I'd settle for a novella at this point. Heck, a short story even! But I digress on to the actual "review" *cough* rant *cough*.

I'm serious about that freston though. Or, better yet, I'll one up it to brain burrowing worms. What the heck just happened?! What did I just subject myself to?! Let's start with the beginning, where I read the first two books of this series in the course of three days (and it only took me that long because I worked 9 1/2 hour shifts). I've never been big on the scifi genre, which is ironic, considering I was named after a character from Frank Herberts Dune series. I've always tried to get into them, because I love most genres but never could. Until Under Different Stars. Not only did the book blow my mind, but it gave me a new appreciation for the science fiction genre, alien worlds, etc. I love all of the characters, and the story itself was so wrought with emotion that it quickly became one of my favorite books of all time. Then I read the second book, and while I thought there was a ton of unnecessary detail, and really nothing happens in the first half (they're in the same place pretty much forever) by the end of it I still found I loved it. After reading the third book however...I'm convinced that the author is actually a priestess and I've been brainwashed. It's her series, these are her characters and her worlds, and she can do whatever she wants with them. As a reader, I generally don't feel like I have the right to complain when tiny details don't go the way I'd hoped. But come on? Really? Really? REALLY? (Told you this was going to be a rant). I did NOT just read three books just to see the main character end up exactly where she started! Oh wait! Not even exactly there, because now, instead of the two friends she had on earth, she has only one. And one who doesn't know anything about the planet, at all. I love Phlix, don't get me wrong, I was seriously rooting for her and was already gearing to riot if anything happened to her (like with Dobrey...seriously? Yuck. Poor dude) but now it just feels like she was thrown in there simply so the author could point and be like, "No! Look, guys! Look! I didn't totally rip her from her life and then leave her all alone in the end anyway! She's got Phlix!". If you couldn't already tell by now, I am not impressed. Like, at all. Yay, Phlix isn't dead! Boo, who got spoonfed a small role supporting character and told it was a full course meal. Basically, right now, I feel a lot like Kricket. Absolutely no control over the horrible things that have happened to me. Am I being dramatic? Admittedly, sure, but come on, guys? Who doesn't AT THE VERY LEAST want some closure about Trey and Kyon? I was totally okay with her falling for the latter. Honestly, if she hadn't I would have called her crazy. He was convincing. Even I was falling for him. But I still wanted her to end up with Trey. It's left open, with her being warned Kyon might decide to come after her once he wakes up (yeah, good luck getting past all those a-hole Amster d-bags, who also, by the way, I ended up hating JUST AS MUCH if not more than the Alameeda, but we'll get to that) and Phlix, the friend who doesn't actually see the future so take everything she says with a grain of salt, told her she and Trey weren't done. Thanks for that, girl who really has no way of knowing. While we're speaking, I'm sorry you got used as a plot device. I know you have issues with being used and all. Back to Kyon, I get why she fell for him, it was realistic and it made sense. I'm sure it upset some people, but it worked for me because I assumed everything would come to a somewhat acceptable conclusion in the end. Wrong. So wrong. Clearly, I don't see the future either. In this book, try as the author might, Trey gets swept aside. Forget the rug, he's under the floorboards. We never really get a chance to see closure there, even enough of it for Kricket walking away to seem justified. She's trying to be cruel to protect him, ok, but isn't that the same as lying to him? That thing she hates when people do? There's not even any mention of him in that damn letter to her stupid sister (or Jax for that matter!! I had begun to suspect in book two that the author's love had shifted from Jax to Wayra, but that proves it!). And don't even get me started on her sister. We know absolutely nothing about Astrid. Aside from the two or three miniscule glimpses we get of her, everything else is all hearsay. While there's been no mention of it that I'm aware of, I don't even feel like a book series revolved around her would be good/helpful at this point. We came into it knowing nothing about her, and we left the same. Sort of like Kricket. In fact, by the end I'm pretty much completely like Kricket. I don't have Trey, I don't have Kyon, I don't have a place in Ethar, and because I'm not so sure I'll be recommending this series to anyone anymore, I don't even have the one friend. IF we'd gotten to actually know Astrid, and IF we'd actually gotten the chance to like her, MAYBE Kricket running off in the end would have at least been alright. Because, to be clear, I've got no problems with her leaving, it's how she leaves and what she leaves behind that pisses me off. Also, she's not really heading towards anything. She can't even go back to Chicago so...there goes the only two people prior to this entire mess that she cared about. We see in book two that Astrid "loves" Kricket, but even then it does seem pretty clear that Kricket would make a better empress than her. So, because she was coddled by their jerkwad of a dad, she gets to live happily? With the guy she loves? And with a family? While her people basically go around slaughtering people the same as the Alameeda did? Riiiight. That seems reasonable. Not. At least the Alameeda were honest that they were arrogant, insufferable,entitled pricks. Pan's people? They honestly think they're better. Wow. Just wow. Basically, to me, it doesn't seem like in the end Kricket got to be free. It seems like she ran. And she'll be running. FOREVER. Maybe Astrid won't send people after her (which I'm sure personally she won't, but hello, who really thinks she has control over daddy dearest? Or Giffin) but she and Phlix won't really KNOW that for certain. They'll always be forced to look over their shoulders. There were too many characters left in the gray area for it to leave off with such an untidy ending. Giffin clearly doesn't want her dead, but he'll kill her to protect Astrid. Her dad does want her dead, but he loves Astrid, so maybe if she asks he'll let it go. Trey loves Kricket, but he's pissed about Kyon and possibly thinks she hates him. Kyon is unconscious, and needs to survive the a-hole Amster d-bags before he can even consider how he can get to Kricket. Oh, but we know he loves her right, because he turned himself in? Nope. Doesn't satisfy me. Nice try though. Not. (I'm probably being harsh, am I being harsh? This is why I don't usually let myself rant). Her dad did what he thought he HAD to, based off a prophecy of the future, even knowing that FUTURES CAN CHANGE. Umm, hello? Kricket apparently changed it by writing on a mirror with makeup. Which, also seemed like a stretch, like, how convenient she was able to escape imminent demise by writing on a mirror. What? That's attempted to be explained away by Pan telling Trey earlier that his wife saw too far into the future for small details like that to have a large enough ripple effect. Uh huh. Totally buying it. Again, not. Honestly, the dude didn't even try, and it disgusts me how he got away with it. Seriously, NOTHING happens to him. Nothing. He's just as bad as Kyon's dad, using his children, thinking he has all the answers. She doesn't even get to tell him off properly. WHAT?! So, because Papa Ensin is dead, one bad guy down, I should be happy? Nope. Not even a little bit. I didn't need Kricket to become empress or anything, but I did need her to be the badass that I fell for in the first book, the one that kept me reading and actually got me interested in the genre. I just needed her not to run. That being said, I would have been a lot happier if we'd gotten to know Astrid at the last minute, found out she'd never wanted to rule and abdicated to Kricket, so that their father got screwed like he deserved, and Kricket got a family and a future that didn't include sleeping in alleys and being homeless. Is that too much to ask? Maybe. But still.

To wrap this insanely long rant up, at the beginning of this we got a girl who's had a horrible life and is FINALLY about to be free of it because she's turning eighteen. She has a couple best friends who love her, a place to live, and a job that pays the bills and doesn't completely blow (there are worse things she could have been doing, and we all know it). Then she got ripped from her life. Fell in love, "possibly twice", found out she was abandoned as a child, found out she was also stalked as a child by a guy who allowed horrible things to happen to her in order to keep her down, and that like she's believed her entire life, people only want to use her. She's nothing special. How does she end up? Probably stalked the rest of her life by a guy who'll do nothing to help her in order to keep her down, now jobless, friendless (aside from Phlix of course) and homeless. Things are even more bleak now than they were at the damn start, the only difference is instead of being abandoned, she was the abandoner. And it wasn't even because she loves Earth so much, no, it's because if she hadn't RUN, she would have been killed. So, really, where's the change in that? Where has this character grown? She's still only doing whatever she has to to survive because she's desperate. Like telling Trey she doesn't love him. And not telling Kyon that she loves him. By the time it's all over, she doesn't even trust the Cavar's who have had her back the first two books that we all fell in love with. She's just as suspicious, heartbroken, empty, and alone as she was in the first chapter of book one, if not more so. WHY DID I NEED TO READ THREE BOOKS FOR THE MAIN CHARACTER TO END UP IN THE EXACT SAME PLACE?! Where has she grown as a person? What's changed for the better? She killed a dude who sucked for a bunch of other dudes who sucked. That was it. If he hadn't been trying to kill her, would she have even bothered? Who knows at this point! Ok, I'm done. Maybe. Might add one or two things later if they pop into my head, but for now, gonna end it with the part that really disappoints me is that it was attempted to make Kricket end on a note where she's finally achieved freedom, but that's the biggest lie of all. What she has right now is more running, not freedom. She's worse off now than she was before. I feel really bad for Kricket. And Trey. And even Kyon. So, I guess thanks for being such a good writer that I fell head over heels, one hundred percent, in love with all of these characters, only so you could stick brain eating worms into my ears while I was distracted. Awesome.

Again, like I said earlier, if this ends up not actually being the last of KRICKET's books, then I'll change my rating. It'd totally make a five, at the very least a four. As of now, being it's the last book, I can't even bring myself to give it a three. The only reason it's even getting a two is because I feel like part of me is betraying these characters, otherwise it would be a one. :/

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Reaper's Property (Reapers MC, #1) by Joanna Wylde

 
Review by Tempest.

Blurb:

Marie doesn’t need a complication like Horse. The massive, tattooed, badass biker who shows up at her brother’s house one afternoon doesn’t agree. He wants Marie on his bike and in his bed. Now.

But Marie just left her abusive jerk of an ex-husband and she’s not looking for a new man. Especially one like Horse—she doesn’t know his real name or where he lives, she’s ninety percent certain he’s a criminal and that the “business” he talks with her brother isn’t website design. She needs him out of her life, which would be a snap if he’d just stop giving her mind-blowing orgasms.

Horse is part of the Reapers Motorcycle Club, and when he wants something, he takes it. What he wants is Marie, but she’s not interested in becoming “property of”.

Then her brother steals from the club. Marie can save him by giving Horse what he wants—at home, in public, on his bike… If she’s a very, very good girl, she’ll get lots more of those orgasms only he can offer, and he’ll let her brother live.
Maybe.
  


* * * 

I was really torn what to give this book, initially I wanted to only give it two, and if I based it off of only my preferences, I would. However, the book is called Reaper's Property, so while I personally don't like how the main female is treated, I can't blame that on the author. It's pretty clear what the book's about just by the title, after all. I'm not one to cringe over a little dark erotica (not that this was that, just using as an example) or a super possessive male lead, however, I'm a pretty independent female myself, so this book ended up frustrated/pissing me off often enough that after the first third of it I wasn't liking it anymore. I couldn't get into her, because while she thinks she's attempting to be strong it's pretty clear she isn't. And he...was an asshole. She ended up falling for him way too quickly, and he was.....well, an asshole. HOWEVER, like I said, while it wasn't the type of read for me, clearly for what it's supposed to be, it was good. A lot of people have mentioned in their reviews this is basically someone's rape fantasy, which I'd have to agree with, so if that's your thing, you might really enjoy this. Despite my dislike for the way this turned out in the middle, I do have a couple of the other books in the series and will probably get around to reading them. It wasn't so much the biker lifestyle that turned me off, but the way it was handled between these two characters. Towards the end the author was trying to make it clear that while there are gender lines in the club, the women aren't actually treated less than equal, just treated in different ways, but because of everything that happened between the mc's I really couldn't get past it. Fingers crossed I'll be more into the next one because the writing style was good and while I was disgusted with the characters most of the time, I still kept reading so that's something.

Admittedly, I'm a Sons of Anarchy fan, which is why I chose this book in the first place. If anyone knows of any Biker books that good, please drop me a line! ;)

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Author Interview/Giveaway: Nenia Campbell

Hi everyone! For those of you who've been reading lately, you've seen that I've recently finished Nenia Capbell's trilogy, Horrorscope! If you haven't checked it out, you can read blurbs for all three books, as well as see my reviews in earlier posts below! Just as a small recap, this series is about a girl who gets involved with a psychopath who becomes obsessed with her. The books take place over a range of years, which makes it very interesting, and unique in comparison to most stories. I was lucky enough to the author to agree to an interview, as well as a giveaway! So, check the interview out, and sign up to be one of TEN lucky winners! The prize is an omnibus eBook version of the trilogy! That's right, you could win the entire trilogy!!! :) Sign up below and spread the word!

She's also currently hosting a giveaway for a signed paperback copy of book #2, Horrorscape. Here's the link so you guys can check it out:

https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/129080-fearscape






Interview:

 1.) When did you first start writing and what prompted you to do so?

I started writing around age fourteen, back when Quizilla was still a thing. I remember reading some of the stories people were posting and thinking, in all my teenage arrogance, "I can do better!" At sixteen I started posting on Fictionpress, which is probably where at least a quarter of my fanbase comes from. Their encouragement is a huge part of why I decided to pursue publishing. In spite of that aforementioned arrogance, I'm really very neurotic and self-doubting when it comes to my writing (and pretty much everything else). I never would have believed I was good enough without such loving support.

2.) what kind of writer would you describe yourself as?

The friendly recluse.

3.) what is your favorite book that you've written, published or otherwise, and why?

Probably Terrorscape. It pushed a lot of my personal boundaries as a writer, and I feel like it does a good job of rounding off the series.

4.) if you could pick any fictional character as your best friend, who would it be and why?

Anne, from Anne of Green Gables, ofc. We'd be "bosom friends" forevs.

5.) if you weren't writing, what else do you think you'd be doing?

Having a better social life. But between writing, my other job, and adulting, I don't have a lot of free time. ;(

6.) do you have a particular genre you like to read/write? Are they the same? Why or why not?

I like to read bodice rippers, science fiction and fantasy, pop science, memoirs, and literary fiction. I like to write new adult...which is weird, because I really don't like most new adult books. Toni Morrison has a great quote about writing the stories you wish you could read but don't exist, so maybe I'm just writing the new adult books I wish I could read - raw, edgy, and really twisted.

7.) what is your favorite book?

I have a couple books I've reread a lot. White Oleander, Don Quixote, The Last Unicorn, Fire and Hemlock, Poison Study, Ready Player One, etc. These are definitely my favorites.

8.) are you currently working on anything? Can you tell us anything about it?

I'm working on CEASE AND DESIST, which is the last book in my IMA series. It's basically about an assassin who ends up falling for his hostage in an unconventional way, and how much this ends up screwing up their lives while simultaneously making them both stronger people. Its Goodreads page is here. I'm pretty excited about finishing another series!

9.) to help them out, if readers are a fan of (______) they'll like your work.

I'm trying to think about who I've been compared to... People have definitely compared my IMA series to Anne Stuart's work, especially BLACK ICE, and to J.A. Redmerski's book, KILLING SARAI. Other comparisons, for various works: L.J. Smith, Aleatha Romig, V.C. Andrews, Karina Halle, Cassandra Clare, etc.

Goodreads has a list of authors who have been shelved similarly to me, which you can find here.

10.) where can we find out more about you and your work?

I have a Facebook
https://www.facebook.com/aficionenias

An Instagram
http://instagram.com/neniagram

A Twitter
https://twitter.com/NeniaCampbell

A reviewing blog
http://neniacampbell.blogspot.com/

And an author blog
http://neniasbooks.blogspot.com/

My books are for sale on Amazon, Smashwords, and (for paperback copies) Createspace:
https://www.smashwords.com/profile/vi...

http://www.amazon.com/Nenia-Campbell/...

https://www.createspace.com/pub/simpl...

I encourage people to contact me on any one of these sites. I love talking to people about anything and everything. My passions are many, and my love of friendship, limitless. :D


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Terrorscape (Horrorscape, #3) by Nenia Campbell

Review by Tempest.

Blurb:

He lost to her twice and it nearly consumed him. Now, it's time for another game. And this time, he won't let her go so easily. Val's not just fighting for her friends' lives this time: She's fighting for her own, too.

Warning: Contains rape, rape triggers, non-con, elements of BDSM, violence, and content not appropriate for those under 18.


* * * 




I really enjoyed this book. I liked the first two a lot, but this one was better in many ways. The style of the writing had improved (not that it was bad in the first two, it wasn't!) and the character development was well done. That had gotten much better in book two as well, but I feel like it was great in this book. New characters Mary, and Jade, had tons of personality, and it was easy to get to know them and understand them. I quickly fell for Jade, and I loved how realistic Mary came off, trying to be a supportive roommate but also containing the self preservation gene. The few times we POV jumped in this book, it was certainty necessary, and always entertaining. I didn't feel like any POV we experienced was just tossed in there to take up space, like unfortunately I did with a few of the jumps in book 2. This was all together a tighter, better composed story, with only a few minor issues that I found.

One of those is the that there's still a lot of sugarcoating going on. This being the final book, there are some things I'd like a bit of closure on. I understand they may be a prequel in the works (which would be awesome!) or something of the likes, but even if it's something that takes place after this book, there are still things that can't be explained there. For instance, weeks would jump by in a sentence. Just a sentence. Example: "Days passed, then weeks, and Val did not catch a single glimpse of the grandmaster". Ok...why? It just doesn't make sense to me that he'd show up, then let that much time pass while he did....what? It seems like pretty much nothing. And her? Why would she stick around once she knows that her stalker, who's tried to kill her before, has found her? The reasons behind her deciding not to run need to be emphasized in order to make it believable. There are a lot of moments like that, where I was a little jarred from the story because so much time passing with no one making a move didn't make sense. I also had issues with the beginning and end. It starts out in Gavin's POV, which I liked a lot, however, we see part of his family, which is odd because supposedly the police are looking for him (wouldn't they check his childhood home?) and they all seem to know that he's a psycho who terrorized Val....huh? It was weird, and we never heard/saw anything about it again. If that was the set up for another story (like a prequel) I much would have preferred we just see it in that other story. It left too many unanswered questions, and not of the good variety. It also made me wonder more about Gavin and where he come from, if he's screwed up because of some outside source instead of his own psychology like is implied in the rest of the book (and previously in the first two). Being that it's the last part of this tale, I don't want to question whether or not he was pressed into this mold or morphed into it himself. The author clearly knows these characters entire backstories, which is great, but I as the reader do not, so having quick bursts of stuff like this is more frustrating than interesting. Another thing that got sugarcoated over is the copy cat stalker. It wasn't clear enough in make instances who Val was talking to, Gavin or the copy cat. I feel like, over the phone, she would have recognized if it was his voice or not. That wasn't explained well, and could easily be solved by saying the line was crackly or something like that. Threads seemed to be left dangling, like was that the copy cat by the vending machines then? And if so, what was with the note? We see later that Gavin is the one who killed Jade, but then why did he want Vance's address if he wasn't going to do anything? How was Gavin able to find them out in the middle of nowhere? Why did he place henbane in her hand if he'd just made the conscious decision to keep her? And about that, I would have liked more of that train of thought as well. I would have liked to see her reaction to his choice. After spending all of this time with these characters, I would have liked more reaction between them, and conversation, than the few every three days meetings we got. And the game this book was confusing, and maybe pointless? I don't know. She had to guess who he was going to kill, except she really didn't try very hard, and it never really made much sense. The last two especially. I don't believe we ever even get an answer as to who Rook was supposed to stand for. And was Jade number 2? That being the case, when she didn't hear from him for a few days...wouldn't she have guessed that he could have been the victim? What was the point of this "game" and what was it leading up to? Questions like that, which seem pretty important to me, never really get answered.

Then there was the end. I loved how it ended, don't get me wrong. Honestly, I don't see how it could have ended any other way. However, it was way too rushed. It was like all of the details got glossed over, making it not only hard to follow, but hard to believe as well. Like, where did she get the knife? How did she get it hidden? How did someone as attentive and paranoid as Gavin not realize? I would have liked it described how she got it, and when this was happening exactly. They're in his room (I assume...?) so how long ago did the whole Vance thing occur? Had Gavin told her about his marriage plans? What's going on with the whole baby thing? He'd been cold and crazy throughout, but there were moments where he was somewhat ok, and at the very end there he just went one hundred percent crazy again. After having someone else almost kill her, effectively taking her from him, I expected more emotion, even if it was just of the crazy stalker possessive kind. It didn't really need to be in an epilogue either, just a final chapter, and then it would have been nice to see how Val was doing in an epilogue after. It just sort of ended in a page after three books, which was a bit dissatisfying to me. Again, I liked how it ended, just not how brushed over the events were. If the scene were flushed out, given more detail and description, then it would have been amazing, and I probably would have given this book a full five stars instead of four.

That all being said, I did add this book to my "In Love" bookshelf on Goodreads, despite the four stars, so take from that what you will. ;)




If you guys are interested in checking out this trilogy (and you should be!) be sure to check back within the next few days! We're going to be hosting a giveaway for all three books, as well as have answered questions from the author! :)

Horrorscape (Horrorscape, #2) by Nenia Campbell

Review by Tempest.

Blurb:

Val receives a calling card from a very dangerous boy who wants to play with her. It's a game without rules, logic, or consequence, and he'll stop at nothing to claim her as his—even if it means destroying them both.

Three years ago, Valerian Kimble got herself entangled with a burgeoning sociopath intent on adding her to his own columns of wins and losses. She managed to escape him, but at a terrible cost...

This time it's personal.

Now a high school senior, Val is a pale shadow of the girl she once was and still recovering from the terrible trauma she suffered at his hands. She is understandably reluctant when her friends receive mysterious invitations to a theme party being held in one of the old manor homes on the edge of town.

Right away, something about the party seems off. The other guests are secretive, and strangely hostile. Cell phones don't work. Doors lock and unlock, seemingly at will. And the festivities start to take a turn for the sinister as the evening progresses. Because their host loves games. Loves them so much that he's decided to make a little wager. The deadline is sunrise. The stakes? Their lives.

Let the games begin.


* * *
 
I started this book the night after finishing the first one. I was happy to find that many of the issues I found with book one weren't in Horrorscape. There were less grammatical errors, and the POV only switched at random one time that I found. The rest of the changes were done with page/chapter breaks, which helped the story continue to flow. The only problem I had with this was certain POVs didn't seem necessary. We got to see how much of a jerk James was, sure, but I sort of got that without all the inner commentary. And Blake? I don't see why being in his head ever was needed. I would have much preferred more of Gavin or Val. A lot of the events, their actions, etc. get sort of frosted over, and that time could have been better spent letting us delve deeper into their psyche instead. I also liked the character building more in this book. They're flushed out much better, so that they have more distinctive personalities. I found myself really liking Lisa (though there was that one reveal that then never got spoken about again...?) whereas in the first book I tolerated her at best. I also liked Val a lot more, which was nice. The author did a good job developing her paranoia, though I feel like it should be stressed in some places that it's been three-four years for Val. Because it wasn't for me, there was a time or two where I had to stop myself from being like, "Why would she be dumb enough to do that/go there?". All in all, I got swept up in the second part of Val's story just as quickly as I did the first. There were still things I didn't care for, however.

I really feel like Val would have flat out recognized Gavin. Yes, it's been three years, but no, generally people don't change that drastically. Possibly plastic surgery was jokingly mentioned, but I really would have liked that set in stone. I feel a better way around this might have been making it a masquerade time event instead. She was intimate with this guy, and then he turned into a psycho. There is no way she's going to forget his face, or go near anyone who even remotely looks like him. She would not have entered that house. Also, his voice? How did that change then? She would have recognized that I'm sure. A lot of details, like that one, were glossed over. Like, how did he find the white team? Did they all really need the money? Stuff like that. Because we don't really get to understand their situation, it's hard to relate any time they're on the page, which is often. Teams are also assumed based on color at random, almost right after Lisa and James make fun of the others for wearing white instead of black. How did they figure out this team thing then? And why would they assumed Gavin was on the white team when he's not only wearing both colors, but clearly not participating? There are a lot of moments like this that just don't make sense. Blake gets accused of being
"non confrontational" because he's not really ok with killing people. Then he actually goes into this story about how it's all because of his parents. What? I'm not ok with killing people either. Just cause. And when the first character dies...the others don't seem all that upset. I've lost a best friend before, and while obviously I wasn't being terrorized and running for my life so high on adrenaline and distracted, I spent almost all of my time thinking about it. Blake barely did at all. Right after in fact, we're in his head and he's busy thinking up other things. What?! I want emotion, which unfortunately, was something I found this book lacking a bit. Gavin says some things that come close to us really seeing emotion from him, then poof gone. Same with Val. And Lisa and Blake should have been way more messed up after that. I don't mean we get pages and pages of mourning, but at least have them mention they'll deal with it once they're safe or something. There's a part where Gavin threatens Val with the game Seven minutes in "heaven" and yet they end up playing anyway even though she does what he says. When this happens, it should be explained he's a cheat or something, because not even Val recalls the deal. Also, why would you ask the creepy guy if he's Gavin? Because he's going to tell you. Not. I wanted a smarter Val, not necessarily stronger, because I understand after what she'd been through, she wouldn't be. Weaker was a great angle, however, she should have been a bit more intelligent. And ok, she's supposed to be a bit naïve, but that much? She mouths something to Lisa, with Gavin right in front of her. Dumb. Which brings me to my biggest issue with this book: Gavin.

He spent ALL OF THIS TIME and energy, carefully planning this entire thing out (which also, the "games" could have been a bit better orchestrated and dire) then in literally five seconds decides to kill instead of keep her. I get that she almost slit his throat, but he's smart, he had to expect that. He even says himself he was curious to see how far she'd go. He was surprised, ok, but still. After all of that time, he doesn't even bother actually sleeping with her? Just kills hers? From what I understand of the third book, we'll get more of that, but I still would have liked better closure for the second. He's crazy, and I don't believe or secretly wish for him to be a good guy or anything like that, but maybe just having him be a little more invested when this entire time that's all he's come off as. He could have just done this at the beginning of the party. It's not like he really got much out of waiting. She wasn't that much sport.

Basically, some scenes/information was so important they should have gotten more time. I would have much rather read more about why Val didn't think it was Gavin, or what Gavin planned for this party event wise, than that Blake has a crush on Lisa and that Lisa is pissed she hid behind a fake plant for an hour. Some of Lisa's insight was necessary, but not nearly enough, so while it was better having the POV sectioned off, it was still a bit tedious jumping into characters who I didn't find interesting/important enough. And....whatever happened to that last guy on the white team? I mean, I assume he was in the house but...we literally never saw him. At all.

I still really enjoyed this book, just feel there should be tightening in places and better explanation in others. But there were some pretty good lines, like, shiver inducing ones that my Kindle copy kept telling me a billion other people highlighted as well. The strong moments are strong, and intense, and they're what kept me flicking page after page desperate to see what happened next. They were just too few, and often far between. More of those, more explanation, description, character building (on the two mains I mean, Val and Gavin) and I would have given this book five stars hands down. Honestly, even with everything else that bugged me, I would have given it four except for that ending. So abrupt. The enticing and terrifying thing about Gavin this whole time has been how meticulous he is, how he plans out every little detail which allows him to continuously be three steps ahead of everyone else. At the end, it was like he sort of fell apart. He wasn't as scary, or, sadly, enticing. Fingers crossed he returns to that guy in book three, which I'm reading next!!!

Oh, and one last thing, were there (Val didn't see any), or were there not (James thought he did) fish in those tanks?! I have to know! (For my own curiosities sake ;) ).
 

 

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Hey everyone! Just wanted to stop by and let you know that one of my books, Within a Dream, is currently available as a FREE read on Swoonreads.com! The book is up in its entirety, so please go and check it out! This is a good opportunity for those of you who've always wanted to read one of my books but didn't have the means/money to do so!

If you haven't heard of the site, Swoonreads allows authors to post their completed books up for readers to read/rate/comment/etc. ! The books with the most shown interest get checked out by the site runners, and are possibly given a publishing contract! That being said, it would really mean a lot if you guys could go check it out! The link is below, along with the blurb and a cover image! :) For more information on this and other books, please check out my personal author blog: http://tempestchani.blogspot.com/

Thanks!

Blurb:

Lily likes being a witch. Sure, aside from floating pencils and telepathically communicating with her three best friends, there aren’t many real perks. Until it brings two of the hottest guys she’s ever seen into her life. Of course, there are always strings, and this one comes in the form of a prophecy foretelling her saving, and eventually ruling, a realm she’s never heard about in this lifetime. With dark fey suddenly hunting them down, Lily and her friends are forced to make a decision, complete the prophecy or turn their backs. If that isn’t enough stress, Lily also has a choice to make of her own. Trust in their brooding dark haired guide, Larkin? Or the golden dream stalker Ronan? One claims he’s her soul mate. Both want her back in a realm she can’t recall. What’s a girl to do?

http://www.swoonreads.com/m/within-a-dream

Fearscape (Horrorscape, #1) by Nenia Campbell

Review by Tempest.

Blurb:

He followed her because he wanted to own her. She trusted him because she wanted excitement. There's a saying that curiosity can kill … but Valerian Kimble is beginning to learn that satisfaction might just be worse.

Fourteen-year-old Valerian lives in an age where antiheroes and bad boys are portrayed as the romantic ideal, and good guys are passe and boring. So when Gavin Mecozzi, the school's brilliant but twisted loner, begins to show an interest in her after a chance meeting in a pet store, Val is intrigued. He's charming and poetic and makes her feel things that she thought were only possible in books--

Fear.

Because somebody is stalking Val. Somebody who wants to hurt her. Own her. Possess her. Maybe even kill her.


* * *
 
This one was hard for me to rate. I actually had to take a couple days to think about it even. I ended up giving it three stars because the story was very interesting, despite all the things I didn't like about it, and I immediately wanted to delve into the second installment the second I reached the last page of this book. That being said, let me point out all of the things that I didn't like, which made me want to give the book only two stars initially.
 
For one, there are some grammatical issues, like missing words, which isn't too big of a deal really. It's annoying, but I believe these are self published, and most have errors like this that slip through the crack. There were enough to be tedious, but not jarring, so I wouldn't let that deter you from reading. The second thing, however, was that randomly a bit more than halfway through the book, the tense changes, and with no warning or page breaks at all. One paragraph we're in the main characters head, the next it's her mom or her teacher. Not only was this unnecessary, it was also very frustrating. If we'd gleaned some important information through it that we couldn't have possibly gotten from anywhere else, that would be one thing, but that wasn't the case. Another thing that really bothered me was how quickly the drama escalated. One second, she likes this guy (and we never really get a chance to understand why because we don't see enough of him or them together) the next she thinks he's her stalker simply because no one at the school likes him. Yet she still continues to hang around him, and get into cars with him, and go to his house....yeah. That was also pretty dumb. I feel like there has to be a better way to get Val to go over his house than simply have her go to search for clues. I understand she's only fourteen, but I feel like the author didn't give her intelligence enough credit, and because of that, I ended up liking Val a lot less. If I don't like the main character, generally that means I'll end up hating the book as a whole. More scenes between them without him being completely creepy would have been nice, because then we would have gotten to see what she saw in Gavin. All we got were the strange moments, that totally gave away who he really was. A bit more mystery would have been nice. Making me fall for him a little before pulling the rug out from under me would have been awesome. All of these things added up to me finding the characters annoying, vapid, and dumb. There wasn't a single one that I can actually say I even liked eighty percent of the time, including Val. 
 
Still, with all that being said, the overall plot of the book was good enough to keep my attention. Once the ending was revealed (aka the stalkers identity) things got really, really good. I loved the fast passed action, the dialogue, and Val's reactions. I do feel like the very very end could have been a bit better, being that it was obvious and not very realistic, but still. I'm reading the second book right now, which means that even with all of these issues I had, I went out and bought the next book. (I bought the third too!) so something but be right about it!
 
It was also a super quick read, so if you're looking for something to pass a short amount of time, and like a bit of thrill, then you should check this book out.