Friday, April 21, 2017

Review for Phoenix Always by Jae Dawn


 
Author: Jae Dawn
Genre: Urban Fantasy/Paranormal

Blurb:

From Romania to New Orleans through nine centuries and thirty-nine lives, Phoenix Maison remembers them all. What she doesn’t remember is how she came to be trapped in this cycle of reincarnation. Every year in every life, she prepares for her possible death, but this life is different from the others. She loves her family and her native New Orleans and longs for a future with her girlfriend. 

Determined to break her curse, Phoenix stumbles down an oddly familiar path back to the only life she doesn’t remember, where her immortal soul lived in an immortal body. 

Even as bloodless corpses pile in her beloved city, Phoenix still hopes to escape her destiny. But her seemingly endless time is running out and she must either embrace what she was always meant to be or let humanity meet a brutal fate. 
The future of mortals and immortals alike lies in her choice.

My Rating: 5 stars

My Review:

Phoenix Always begins with Phoenix Maison, an eighteen-year-old young woman who has lived thirty-nine lives. She is finally happy in her current life with adoring parents, a girlfriend, and a city she loves. However, her clock is ticking down before she once again dies and is reborn. She may be able to break the curse over her but is the cost higher than she is willing to pay?

This novel had me hooked from the beginning! It has great pace and never a dull moment. The way the author interlaced fragments of the protagonist's past with the present is flawless. I loved Phoenix! Her life is so fascinating and she's a strong heroine. You can feel how much she loves her family and friends, and can empathize with the struggles she faces. I really enjoyed the New Orleans setting and with the authentic descriptions of the city you can just see yourself there.

The entire concept of Phoenix Always is absolutely intriguing. There are immortal beings, magic, and plenty of unique characters. It's very well-written, exciting, and has twists and turns throughout that keep you wondering what will happen right up to the end. I look forward to reading the next one!



You can find this amazing book on Amazon!

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Spotlight and New Release with author Lily Amis!


Hello! Today on the blog we have Lily Amis and her new release, Birdy & Fishy!


Birdy & Fishy Book Blurb
“Birdy & Fishy” is a lovely and deep story, about the great power of hope. It is about, believing in miracles and the strength of friendship and loyalty. Despite different lifestyles, it is the desire for freedom that unites us. We should never give up on our dreams and desires. We should always trust in destiny because the higher power of the Universe will make the impossible, possible, sooner or later. But, remember, everything has its own time and there is a key to every lock because the creator never gives problems without a solution. Therefore, there’s no comparison between the sun and the moon, because they shine when it is their time and SO WILL YOU!

Birdy & Fishy is inspired by

This short story is inspired by the two first memoirs of Lily’s Trilogy, Destination: Freedom (ISBN-13: 978-1502852243, ASIN: B013YS2MWI) and Definition of Freedom (ISBN-13: 978-1515144588, ASIN: B01HK25TBU). Both book titles are also available in German and as ONE BOOK The Lily Amis Story

The symbolic meaning behind “Birdy & Fishy”
This deeply meaningful short, age- and timeless story inspired by the two memoirs Destination: Freedom and Definition of Freedom is a reflection of Lily’s Life in a foreign country.

Fishy’s desperate desire for freedom, a circle of loving friends and a caring family, the feeling of belonging somewhere and of being accepted and integrated, is what many refugees/immigrants feel and struggle with. Some struggle, just for a while, but others for their entire lives. But, as they say, there is always light at the end of the tunnel and this story, with a happy ending, is a good lesson, to never give up on hope, faith, dreams, goals, wishes, and desires, despite the challenging obstacles, of destiny and our selfish, elbow-society!

 Birdy & Fishy links

EBook on Smashwords
ISBN: 9781370442966

EBook on Amazon
ASIN: B06Y2F962F

Print Book on Amazon: Soon available!
ISBN-13: 978-1545113318
ISBN-10: 1545113319

Birdy & Fishy Book Collection

Also available from Lily Amis!



The Lily Amis Story
ISBN-10: 1534780947
ISBN-13: 978-1534780941
ASIN: B01M9G47G2



About Publisher, Author, Illustrator & Blogger Lily Amis
Nominated Multi-Genre Author, Blogger and Artist Lily Amis is the Author of “Destination: Freedom” and eleven more books. With her honest memoir she has enjoyed strong media exposure and public interest during the refugee crises in summer 2015. Placements included two features with British newspaper the Daily Mirror as well as interviews with popular UK’s lifestyle websites Female First and Frost Magazine.
Lily Amis had to fight against injustice, prejudice, discrimination and social isolation for almost three decades to become who she is today. An Independent Author living in Switzerland with the goal to entertain and educate readers about important and eye-opening topics in our society with her books and blogger magazine “Read My Mind”.
Her free online magazine is an entertain & educate project by Lily’s Publishing company nasSima design. With passionate and talented Authors and bloggers from all over the world she is inspiring aspiring Authors and readers as well as Indie Artists from all kind of genres such as music, movie and art. The first issue was published on April 4th 2017 and the RMM team is working on the summer issue now.

Lily Amis Socialmedia & Blogger magazine
Website: www. LilyAmis.com
Blog: LilyAmis.blogspot.com
Lily Amis Book Collections: www.society6.com/nasSimadesign
Lily Amis Amazon Authorpage: https://www.amazon.com/Lily-Amis/e/B00PSLRSS8
Twitter: @nasSimadesign  and @ReadMyMinMag
Pinterest: @nassimadesign

Facebook: @LilyAmisAuthor, @LilyAmisMemoir, @LilyAmisShortStories, @ReadMyMindMagazine

Thursday, April 6, 2017

En Garde!


I love reading a good fight scene. I love writing a good fight scene even more and my novels are full of them.  Writing an epic battle is a great deal of fun but it’s far from easy. Having a fight scene that is both gripping and easy to follow does present some challenges and it’s important to remember some key points.
Firstly, you need to have a specific goal in mind. While the good guys fight the bad guys and the good guys have a hard time but eventually win is an admirable and time tested way to go, it’s very general. Before I write a battle scene I ask myself, what is the point of this fight? Is it to capture an adversary to try to get information? Is it to obtain a new weapon from the enemy, or retrieve something that was stolen? Is it simply to survive? Having a specific goal will make it easier to direct the fight scenes, instead of just having a bunch of people slashing away at each other just for the sake of fighting.
The scene. Make it different and unique. Every one of my fight scenes is different from another. I’ve had fight scenes in places as simple as a large field, to as complicated as starting in a parking garage and ending up on top of a tall building. Changing it up gives you a chance to work with different aspects and will keep the reader interested. Obviously, a fight in a field would be easier than a brawl in a parking garage. It isn’t only the place you need to think about. Is it sunny out? Hot? Rain would make the ground slippery and deep snow would make it difficult to maneuver. Adding these elements will give your fight scene tension and added challenges for your characters.
No fight scene would be complete without some amazing weapons but choosing your weaponry takes some careful and thoughtful planning. A massive battle-ax sounds amazing and deadly but you can’t take a battle-ax and stick it in the hands of a fourteen-year-old girl; it would be too heavy. One of my characters, Finlay, yields a battle-ax and I make sure and mention his well-muscled arms and shoulders.  Guns are great for distance but in a close-up battle you would risk shooting your companions. A katana is a timeless weapon. However, it is best for slashing, not stabbing. Do your research! I’ve spent countless hours researching weapons, how they work, stances, and moves. Knowing how to use the weapons in your writing will make it more realistic and interesting for the reader.
Speaking of realistic, keep facts in mind when writing a fight scene. A battle is tiring. If your character is still fit as a fiddle after an hour-long battle, something is wrong. You need to add details like burning muscles and sweat getting in your character's eyes to keep your fight real. While a person getting stabbed in the leg and continue to valiantly fight with the blade still embedded may add some great flair in a movie, it may not be quite realistic. How deep is the knife stabbing? Is it slicing through more muscle with each step, or wedging against a bone? Your character would be in a tremendous amount of pain, and likely wouldn’t be fighting for long.
My last bit of advice would be to keep the outcomes of your fight scenes balanced. If your protagonist is always losing, that’s discouraging to the reader, and your characters! On the other hand, if your protagonist is constantly coming out on top you lose the chance for your character to learn and grow. Writing both wins and losses for your characters will keep your readers wondering with each battle, what’s going to happen?
And now, to arms!

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Review for An Enlightening Quiche by Eva Pasco


My Rating: 5 stars!

Genre: Contemporary Women's

Blurb:

Two headstrong women in their forties coming from different moral directions clash within the confines of a French-Canadian mill town in northern Rhode Island's Blackstone Valley. Their narratives relate how an heirloom quiche recipe and baking rivalry redress misconceptions, misdeeds, and maliciousness which wreak havoc on those caught in the crossfire of a tragedy precipitated by reckless conduct. 


Augusta Bergeron: Dysfunctional.  Deceptive.Demure.  More than meets the eye at face value and stuck in a holding pattern, the town siren engages in morally destructive behavior she attributes to maternal abandonment until she eggs-humes her mother's quiche recipe. 

Lindsay Metcalfe: Pedigreed.  Privileged. Proper. Mourning the recent death of her mother, the historian-in-residence hailing from Boston sets out to preserve the legacy of an impoverished mill, but gets more than she bargains for all around. 

My Review:

I hope you're hungry because An Enlightening Quiche is a book you will want to sink your teeth into! Eva Pasco has done a magnificent job with this novel. Her descriptions are so rich and detailed I found myself falling right through the pages and into the French-Canadian town of Beauchemins, surrounded by the amazing history, places, and people. The story centers around Augusta, long-time native of this historic mill town, and the outsider, Lindsay.

I really loved the characters. Flawed and believable, the charcters were wonderful. The women were strong, independent, and, at times, snarky. The friendships and relationships in An Enlightening Quiche were both beautiful and refreshingly realistic. 

While a quiche bake-off is a headline in the novel, the pages are filled with secrets, mysteries, and gossip under the facade of a simple and steady small-town life. The strength, bonds, and sincerity of the women will have you both laughing and crying throughout the pages. This is an excellent story and you should definitely add Eva Pasco's An Enlightening Quiche to your reading list!

I should add, there's an amazing bonus in the epilogue: the quiche recipe! How great is that? I thought this was a wonderful touch by Eva!

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Hurray!

So this is just going to be a quick post but I'm so excited I just had to put this on here. Souls Discovered has made it to the shortlist for the International Drunken Druid Book Awards! In all honesty, I completely forgot I entered months ago. Yesterday, when I found out I was a finalist I was totally surprised and delighted! It's such an honor just being in the top ten. The winner will be announced on March 31st so my fingers are crossed. I'd love to be able to put 'award-winning novel' in front of my book when I advertise ;)

Best of luck to my fellow finalists! If you would like to see the books that made it to the shortlist you can find them here:

https://www.drunkendruidawards.com/blog

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Meet Jason Firstsearcher!



                                 Say hello to Jason from my novel, Souls Discovered!


Jason is the unspoken leader of the group of Searchers he lives with in a large antebellum house in Georgia.  At six-foot-two with a serious demeanor he falls into the strong and silent type. Of course, his blonde hair and bright blue eyes also put him in the male hotness category (sorry ladies, he’s taken).  As a Searcher, he has spent the past seven years battling demons, both figurative and literal. He is no stranger to hardship. Born and raised in Saint Louis, Missouri he grew up running the streets with some bad influences until the age of thirteen. It was then the Dehmons came after him. Jason had been out trying to sell a bracelet of his mother’s when he encountered the ebony-eyed foes. He fled home, only to find they had reached his mother first. He still carries a lot of guilt about his her death and it is one of the reasons he has difficulty opening up.
The closest person to Jason, besides Keeper Autumn, of course, is Ronan. Ronan become a Searcher a few months after him. The pair survived alone and homeless for a year before they were taken under Petr’s wing at the age of fourteen. Opposite of personality, Jason’s seriousness and Ronan’s carefree nature, the two are as close as brothers. They grew up relying on each other, though a conflict of interest puts a strain on their relationship in Souls Discovered…
Jason is a strong fighter, whose choice of weapon is a crossbow, although he is likely to come out on top in a hand-to-hand fight, as well. Being a Searcher, he also has the ability to wield supernatural power. A Searcher’s power tends to reflect their nature and this holds true for Jason. If you can imagine capturing a violent thunderstorm and condensing it to the size of a grapefruit, you’d have Jason’s power. 
“He could feel his power pulsing in him. He released a fraction of it, the result appearing above his hand. It looked like a small black cloud, spherical in shape. Small, red streaks of lightening would lance from its depths and web briefly across the surface. It sounded like an odd combination of rumbling thunder and the spark and crackle of an electrical short.” 
Trust me, you do not want that thrown at you. His power is a perfect mirror for the chaos and turmoil he carries inside, and rarely voices to anyone. Of course, Jason also has the ability to turn into something dark and dangerous, but if you want to learn more about that side of him, you’ll have to read Souls Discovered!
If you would like to get to know Jason better, you can find him slaying Dehmons and trying to keep his Keeper out of trouble in Souls Discovered.

 Available on Amazon!
You can also learn more by liking my https://www.facebook.com/TheKeepersWaySeries/

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Review for The Menagerie by J.S. Frankel


My Rating: 4 Stars

The Blurb:
Taking care of a pet is one thing, but when orphaned teenager Karen Fox is kidnapped to service an interstellar zoo, she gets more than she bargained for.
We do this for they bring us happiness.
We do this because they have no defense, nowhere else to go and no one to care for them.
We do this in order so that they may teach us what it means to be different, and for us to embrace that difference.
Karen Fox, sixteen and recovering from a terrible car crash that claimed the lives of her parents, dreams only of becoming physically able once more. Hearing a strange voice that comes from somewhere near her hospital, she investigates and is kidnapped by an automated ship transporting interstellar animals to a safe haven. Knowing nothing about how to take care of them and disliking animals to begin with, Karen learns the value of caring for interstellar life. And when a marauding band of poachers attacks the vessel, intending to seize all the animals, Karen is forced to fight for her own life as well as the animals she has come to care for.

My Review:
What would you do if you were abducted by aliens and told you were now the sole caretaker of an interstellar zoo? This is exactly what happens to the main character, Karen Fox. Not only does she have a dislike for pets, she has no experience in caring for them, much less alien animals. Caring for the critters is the only way she will get back home to earth, however, so she steps up to the task. As if taking care of the menagerie of unusual animals wasn't enough, Karen soon finds herself tangled in a web of deadly poachers, toxic planets, and a malfunctioning spacecraft.
I really enjoyed the fast pacing of this novel. It didn't take long to jump right into the action. The detailed descriptions of the world's and animals were great. Having a YA target audience is perfect for this novel as it has a very strong message of acceptance, not only of others but of yourself, as well. My only complaint would be the lack of emotion in some areas but it would not dissuade me from reading this book. If you enjoy a fast-paced story with plenty of action, twists and turns, and some cuddly (or not so cuddly) critters, then I would recommend The Menagerie. Just be careful you don't step in Malurian dragon snot and be mindful of the canarians...they bite.
Find this and many more books by J.S. Frankel on Amazon!