Tuesday, 22 April 2014

{Blog Tour Review & Giveaway} Wild About her Wingman by Robin Bielman

Wild About her Wingman by Robin Bielman
Secret Wish #3

Published on 14 April 2014
Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance
Page Count: 268

Synopsis
Playing it safe never felt so risky.

Erin Watters is her small town’s resident wild child—she doesn’t do boring, and after having her heart annihilated, she definitely doesn’t do relationships. Her friends have other ideas, though, and when they throw down a matchmaking challenge, impulsive Erin can’t ignore it. Even when the annoyingly hot Troy Strieber accepts the matchmaker role…

As a rescue paramedic, Troy’s used to watching out for people. Never mind the bet he made with his buddy to play Erin’s wingman. But the more time he spends with the sexy, charismatic woman, the more he discovers a side of her she doesn’t let many see. Soon what started as an innocent game of matchmaking has them both thinking about the person right under their nose. But Troy’s a play-it-safe guy, and he won’t let a woman who lives for risk ever steal his heart.


Purchase the book
Kindle, B&N, Kobo Books, Entangled
For a limited time Wild About Her Wingman is on sale for ONLY .99 CENTS!


RATING

Disclosure: I received a review copy from the blog tour in exchange for an honest review.



After suffering a heartbreak, Erin didn't go anymore relationships but all the happy couples around her made her think otherwise. Her chance at another relationship came about when Troy came along. He successfully played cupid for a few couples and he was challenged to be Erin's wingman and find her a date. The challenge was accepted.

I enjoyed reading how natural Erin and Troy's relationship was and how it progressed from just friends to realizing they love each other. Erin is a fun character to read because there really isn't any boring moment with her around. She's this risk-taking girl who was just afraid to get hurt but at the same time she has the courage to take a step forward. Oh, she has a phobia of seeing blood and there are scenes where she actually hurt herself accidentally and had to get someone over to help her. Yes, she's that cute.  

Troy, on the other hand, has a nerve wrecking past involving someone he loved. Due to this, he found it difficult to accept Erin's adventurous streak and he also gained a new fear of heights. This was detrimental to his job since he was a rescue paramedic. He has a super adorable niece, Amelia. I love to read their interactions. You could feel how much Troy loved  his niece! 

I like reading scenes where both Erin and Troy are together, and with Amelia too! Erin was surprisingly awkward around kids. However, because both of them fall in love with each other against their wishes, there were lots of struggles. I'm happy to find out that both of them had a happy ending! Although this is book 3 in the series, I have no problem reading this as a stand-alone. There were couples mentioned from previous books so I'll probably grab the first two books as well and get acquainted with the characters. 


May all your wishes come true with this small Glass Vial Dandelion seed Make-A-Wish necklace!





About the author
Robin Bielman lives in Southern California with her high school sweetheart husband, two sons, and crazy-cute mini Labradoodle, Harry. When not attached to her laptop, she can almost always be found with her nose in a book. She also likes to run, hike, and dip her toes in the ocean. Filled with wanderlust, she longs to visit many different places and fulfill her curiosity. She wouldn’t mind indulging her sweet tooth in every location either. She’s a lover of sticky notes, cable television shows and cafĂ© mochas. Writing is a dream come true, and she still pinches herself to be sure it’s real.

Her Secret Wishes series includes Kissing the Maid of Honor and Her Accidental Boyfriend. Her other novels include Worth the Risk, Risky Surrender and Yours At Midnight.  She loves to connect with readers. Learn more and sign up for her newsletter on her website at http://robinbielman.com.

Connect with the author

About the publisher: Entangled Bliss


Blog Tour brought to you by:



Sunday, 20 April 2014

{Weekly Wrap Up} 24 Mar to 20 Apr 2014




Sunday Post is Hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer and 
Stacking the Shelves is Hosted by Tynga’s Reviews.


I'm back from Japan! It was a fun 10 days in a foreign country. I got to see lots of Cherry Blossoms (almost everywhere) and some wild deers (in Nara Park) and experience cool climate (Singapore is usually warm and humid)! Made some friends during the last five days of the trip because we stayed in a hostel. It's really fun getting to know people and just have a light chat at night before all of us went to bed. I'll definitely want to go back to Japan again to visit other areas! However, I need to master the language! 

Wild deers!

and lots of Cherry Blossoms!
(I swear the lighting in the photo below is totally natural!)

A few more photos available in Facebook Page.


Before I forget, I brought back a gift from Japan for my readers. It's a Magatama charm for success. Just follow this link to the Facebook post. Simply like the photo and leave a comment. You need to be quick because I'll be picking the winner on April 21 12 noon (GMT+8).




Book Haul


Bought:
Because it's just 99 cents.

Review:

Haven't been reading since I started preparing for my Japan trip a month ago. Now it's time to start again!

What have you got this week?


Monthly Recap





Next Week on the Blog:

Wild About her Wingman by Robin Bielman
Awakening Foster Kelly by Cara Rosalie Olsen


Current Giveaways:



Send me your links and I'll pop by to check them out! :)

Monday, 31 March 2014

{Review} Dyed and Gone by Beth Yarnall

Dyed and Gone by Beth Yarnall

Published on 25 March 2014
Genre: Adult Romance/Mystery
Page Count: 400

Synopsis

Hairstylist Azalea March is looking forward to a wild weekend in Las Vegas with her friends. Oh, sure, they’re supposed to be there on business, attending the biggest hair show on the west coast, but that doesn’t mean they can’t have a little fun. But fun quickly turns to drama. On the first morning of the show, Dhane, the biggest celeb of the hair-styling world, is found dead. As it urns out Azalea’s friend, Vivian, not only knew Dhane, but the tale she weaves of how they met is faker than a showgirl’s uh… assets. When Vivian confesses to the murder and is arrested, Azalea knows there’s no way she could have done it and suspects Vivian may be trying to protect someone. But who?

Azalea now has to convince Alex, the sexy detective from her past, to help her prove Vivian’s innocence and comb through clues more twisted than a spiral perm. But the truth is stranger than anything found on the Las Vegas Strip, and proving Vivian’s innocence turns out to be more difficult than transforming a brunette into a blonde.


Purchase the Book


RATING: 4 out of 5 Stars
I received a review copy from the publisher in exchange for an unbiased review.

What I Felt
A hairstylist turned 'detective' in order to help to prove her friend's innocence despite her friend's confession to crime. The book summary promises a good story, and Dyed and Gone does not disappoint me with its characters and plots. I was kept busy throughout the entire journey with Azalea, trying to put bits and pieces alongside her. There was just so much discoveries and suspects to play with that I can't help but to make guesses on who the real murderer was.

Azalea seemed real, with her strange obsession with buying gowns when she wasn't feeling very good (because of guys). She was lucky that her two friends,  Vivian and Juan,  managed to stop her! I like reading scenes with Juan in it because he just made the story so interesting and funny! They set off to Vegas for a hair styling convention in which a chilling murder took place, just when I thought the murdered guy had a thing for Azalea due to a secret note to her. We know from the summary that Vivian confessed to the crime and it was up to Azalea to prove everything wrong by finding the real murderer. She couldn't do it alone and very reluctantly called in Alex, the guy who started it all (also known as the guy who promised to call after their date but didn't). 

I never have a dull moment reading Dyed and Gone. Besides, there are several interesting characters who made really good suspects. I just like how a book such as this will keep a reader busy guessing throughout the whole book but never make anything too obvious or simple to guess. This book will be even better if we get to read more about Azalea and Alex's story before they went to Vegas. I find that there wasn't much explained about how they got together.

A good mystery and fun book for readers who enjoy some detective action and for those who are wondering how a hairstylist can actual get involved in such extreme situations.


Connect with the author


Saturday, 29 March 2014

{Spotlight - Interview & Giveaway} Five Corners: The Marked Ones by Cathi Shaw

Five Corners: The Marked Ones by Cathi Shaw

Published on 30 January 2014
Genre: YA Fantasy
Page Count: 294

Synopsis

Growing up in a sleepy village untouched by distant wars and political conflicts, it was easy for Thia, Mina and Kiara to forget such horrors existed in the Five Corners. That is until the dead child is found; a child that bears the same strange birthmark that all three sisters possess. A Mark their mother had always told them was unique to the girls. Kiara's suspicions grow as their Inn is soon overrun with outsiders from all walks of life. Strangers, soldiers and Elders who all seem to know more about what is happening than the girls do. After Mina barely survives an attack in the forest, the sisters are faced with a shattering secret their mother has kept from them for years. As danger closes in around them, the sisters are forced from their home and must put their trust in the hands of strangers. With more questions than answers, Kiara finds herself separated from everyone she loves and reliant on an Outlander who has spent too much time in army. She doesn't trust Caedmon but she needs him if she has any hope of being reunited with her sisters and learning what the Mark might mean.


Purchase the Book


In this post:






This was no use. She would just have to find Teague and talk to him, whether she liked it or not. No sooner had the thought formed than a familiar voice suddenly filled her head.

It's time we talked, Thia. Teague's voice was so real that she stopped what she was doing and looked around the small yard behind her only confirming what she already knew. She was alone.

What was going on? Teague was not present and yet she could have sworn she heard him clear as a bell. Thia shook her head and wondered if she really was going crazy. She recognized Teague's voice perfectly. It was the voice she'd been hearing since she was six years old. A voice she thought only existed in her dreams.  

Putting the bird aside, Thia moved towards the kitchen door. She was just reaching for it when it opened, and she found herself face to face with Teague.

For a moment they just stood and stared at each other. Thia took in his familiar features: the unruly brown curls on top of his head and the high cheekbones that seemed to be at odds with his boyish face. The faint beginnings of laugh lines that were forming at the corners of his eyes. And those eyes. She felt a shiver run down her spine as she held his gaze with her own. His eyes were closer to silver in color than grey and they currently had so many emotions shifting through them that she couldn't identify any of them, despite the fact that they clearly reflected what she was feeling inside.

"I thought it was probably best we talk in private, don't you agree?" he said aloud.

Thia nodded. He was right. Sukey would be arriving to start helping with dinner preparation soon and there was no telling whether Kiara might come to see if she needed more birds. Her sister had been in a killing mood earlier. It was probably best that she talk to Teague away from curious eyes until she figured out what was going on. She moved out of his path and Teague stepped out into the small, enclosed yard shutting the kitchen door firmly behind him.

"What are you doing?" Thia asked, trying to ignore the veiled panic in her voice as she watched him move to the table where the dead birds lay. Grimacing slightly he removed his gloves and reached for one of the birds.

"It's more probable that I saw you doing work and offered to help than that I sought out a supposed stranger for a private talk, don't you think?" he asked reasonably.

Thia nodded and moved wordlessly behind the opposite end of the table to resume work on her abandoned bird. She watched Teague's hands as he skillfully removed feathers from the bird he was holding. Clearly he'd plucked chickens before despite the look of distaste on his face.

"Who are you?" she demanded. "And how do you do that?"

Do what? He asked without speaking aloud, the boyish grin on his face.

Thia felt a pang in her gut. That grin was so familiar. She'd seen it so many times in her dreams. Even as his features had shifted, the round youthful face lengthening into that of a young man, two things had stayed the same in her dreams: Teague's eyes and his smile.

She swallowed, sudden fear curling in the pit of her stomach. Teague paused in his work and looked across at her.

"Please stop doing that!" Thia said, flinching when she heard the desperation in own voice. "It's bad enough that you’re here, in person. I don't need to be hearing you in my head, too!"

"Okay," he said guiltily. Thia fought to suppress dream memories. His eyes, an even more amazing silver grey in person, glimmered in the late afternoon light.

She looked down, taking solace in the sudden silence between them.

"It's not a dream this time, Thia."

"I know," she admitted in a whisper. "But how is this happening?"

Teague shook his head at her, his hair falling forward over his forehead. "I know you're shocked. I was, too, when I first saw you. Then I realized that what we thought were only dreams, were just forays into a different reality." Excitement lit up his features. "A reality that, at times, feels more real than this one, don't you agree?"

Thia opened her mouth to deny what he was saying, even as a dozen memories burst to life in her head. Her mind focused on her first dream memory of him.

Teague had been a boy, only a few years her senior. He’d found her scared and alone along a small river, just as his song had depicted. It must have been some time after Brijit had told her the truth about her birth parents - that they had both been killed in a horrible accident. In the dream, she'd been looking for her parents and found herself suddenly alone.

She remembered the feeling of utter loneliness and despair that had flooded her. She’d wandered lost and afraid, sobbing her heart out. And then suddenly the boy – Teague - had been there. He had led her along a path and back to where Brijit and her sisters had been waiting for her. When she woke she'd felt safe and overwhelmed by the sense that everything was going to be all right.

Thia stared at the boy in front of her, studying his face for any sign that he was joking. But Teague was serious, his eyes willing her to understand but Thia refused to admit that what he was saying could be true.

"It’s not possible, is it? After all, there are no such things as different realities," she insisted vehemently. "There has to be some other explanation. If I dreamwalk, why don't I do it with my sisters? My mother? My friends?" She gestured helplessly. "The only person I've ever shared a dreamwalk with is you. Why is that?"

Teague was silent.

The silence seemed to stretch between them, heavy with shared knowledge. Thia blinked. She finished her last bird and saw that he had also finished and put his gloves back on. The early winter afternoon sun was low on the horizon.

She reached for the tray of birds to carry them into the kitchen. Teague hurried around the table and took the heavy tray from her before she could protest. For the first time Thia noticed he was taller than in her dreams. Not as tall as her sisters but certainly taller than she.

He looked down at her, his eyes unreadable in the fading afternoon light.

And yet the essence of him was so familiar. Before she could stop herself Thia instinctively reached out to touch his forearm, wanted to feel the warm muscles above his gloves, to reassure herself that he was real.

Teague jerked away before she could reach him and Thia felt an inexplicable sense of hurt flood through her.

"I'm real, Thia," he whispered aloud, his breath stirring the hair on her forehead. "But you can't touch me. I can't explain right now but please don't try."




And we have Cathi with us for a short interview!


Hi Cathi, Welcome to Michelle Chew Writes. It's good having you with us today! Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I’ve been writing for more than 30 years. I can’t imagine surviving this world without writing. Writing has always been the way I process what goes on around me. In addition to writing, I’m married and the mother of 3 teenagers, I have two Labrador retrievers and I love enjoying the outdoors in my hometown of Summerland, BC.

Can you describe your book in one sentence?
No. I don’t think I can! That’s a tall order and for a book to be simplistic enough to describe in one sentence makes it not worth reading IMHO!

Where do you get your ideas/inspiration for your book?
I think I’m inspired by the world around me. The original idea for The Marked Ones series came to me when I was running about 8 years ago. But I didn’t start writing it until 2 years ago so I think all the things I was exposed to in the intervening time period just helped to flesh out the ideas and storyline of the novel.

Are there certain characters you would like to go back to, or is there a theme or idea you’d love to work with?
I like the idea of the Prophecy guiding the course of things. I think most of us are very intrigued by the thought that things could be predestined. The first draft of Book 2 is almost complete and the Prophecy continues to play an important role but even I don’t know what will happen in the end!

Will you have a new book coming out soon?
Book 2 of the Marked Ones (Finding Refuge) is now in the editing stage. I’m hoping to have it ready for release late this year or early 2015. I’m also working on a Dystopian series.

What do you do when you are not writing?
I teach writing! I’m a professor at Okanagan College in British Columbia. I’ve been teaching writing for about 12 years.

When did you first start writing and when did you finish your first book?
I tend to write very quickly. So the hard part was just sitting down and starting rather than completing the novel. I had been carrying around the story of Five Corners for a very long time – finally I signed up for Nanowrimo at the advice of my writing partner, Rochelle Dionne. When I had a strict schedule I had my 70,000 word first draft completed in 3 weeks time! The editing took about 3 months. So it was very fast in the end!

How did you choose the genre you write in?
I think it’s really important for a writer to choose a genre he or she loves. I love YA fiction. I used to teach Children’s Literature at Simon Fraser University and I mostly read young adult fiction. It just made sense to write in the genre I most enjoy reading! For Five Corners, I have always loved Fantasy novels, so it was pretty easy to come up with a high fantasy story. My new favorite genre is Dystopian. That’s what my next series will be.

Do you work with an outline, or just write?
I just write. I find that my first few drafts are often very short – almost like an outline – but I do better if I sit down and just let the story spill out. The bonus to that is that I am ALWAYS surprised with out the story comes out. I really don’t know where the story comes from but it takes on a life of its own very quickly and it’s almost as though I’m just the scribe for the story.

Is there anything that you would like to say to your readers and fans?
I love hearing from my readers. I think once a writer puts her words in print, she doesn’t truly own them anymore. As soon as someone else starts reading the story, they take ownership of the characters and storyline. I love chatting about my characters with my readers.










Wednesday, 26 March 2014

{Book Spotlight} Dyed and Gone by Beth Yarnell


Whether you’re looking for a romance that makes you laugh, makes you ‘walk the plank’, keeps you guessing, or stars your favorite paranormal, look no further. Select books have the single-title stories you crave, and the longer length you need to really get ‘lost’ in a great book. To find out more about their titles, chat with authors, participate in special events, and to find out what books are coming next, visit the Entangledwebsite, follow them on Twitter, and like their Facebook page.


Today I'm happy to be featuring Select's March release:



Dyed and Gone by Beth Yarnell

Special $0.99 Introductory Price on the ebook version!


Hairstylist Azalea March is looking forward to a wild weekend in Las Vegas with her friends. Oh, sure, they’re supposed to be there on business, attending the biggest hair show on the west coast, but that doesn’t mean they can’t have a little fun. But fun quickly turns to drama. On the first morning of the show, Dhane, the biggest celeb of the hair-styling world, is found dead. As it urns out Azalea’s friend, Vivian, not only knew Dhane, but the tale she weaves of how they met is faker than a showgirl’s uh… assets. When Vivian confesses to the murder and is arrested, Azalea knows there’s no way she could have done it and suspects Vivian may be trying to protect someone. But who?

Azalea now has to convince Alex, the sexy detective from her past, to help her prove Vivian’s innocence and comb through clues more twisted than a spiral perm. But the truth is stranger than anything found on the Las Vegas Strip, and proving Vivian’s innocence turns out to be more difficult than transforming a brunette into a blonde.





a Rafflecopter giveaway


Sunday, 23 March 2014

{Weekly Wrap Up} 2 Mar to 23 Mar 2014




Sunday Post is Hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer and 
Stacking the Shelves is Hosted by Tynga’s Reviews.


I missed out 2 weeks' worth of wrap up because I was too excited about my upcoming overseas trip to Japan. Spent most of my waking time researching on air tickets, sightseeing locations and accommodation and of course to brush up a little of their language. This would be my first overseas trip and I'm going to be gone from 1 to 10 April. Can't wait!

Didn't get much books over the last few weeks except borrowing 2 books from the library while I went there to get some travel books. 

Book Haul


Borrowed:

What have you got this week?


Weekly Recap



Next Week on the Blog:

Review & Release Day Blast - Dyed and Gone by Beth Yarnall
Book Spotlight - Five Corners: The Marked Ones by Cathi Shaw
Review: Pure by Jennifer L Armentrout


Current Giveaways:



Send me your links and I'll pop by to check them out! :)

Saturday, 22 March 2014

{Blog Tour Review} The Harder I Fall by Jessica Gibson

The Harder I Fall by Jessica Gibson

Published on 20 February 2014
Genre: New Adult Romance
Page Count: 215

Synopsis

Becca Langer was not a normal girl, she didn't have normal girl problems. For most of her life, she’s had to take care of herself, her younger brother Chad, and her drunk mother. She’s lived under the shadow of what her father did when she was ten years old. Forever branded by his actions.

College was her escape, she could get away and finally live. Her dream was to make it in the New York Ballet Company one day. That for her meant a long road full of hard work and dedication. She didn't have time for distractions, and Levi Klein was definitely a distraction.

Will Levi be able to crack through her tough exterior and really see the wounded soul underneath? Becca needs to be loved, but the question is, will she let Levi love her?


Purchase the Book


RATING: 4 out of 5 Stars
Disclosure: I received a review copy via Mark My Words Book Publicity blog tour in exchange for an unbiased review.

What I Felt
What Becca had been through when she was young was horrifying to the extent that she still has nightmares from time to time. Her life wasn't easy and it was really remarkable that she remained strong throughout the whole ordeal. Life started changing when she set off for college when she left her younger brother behind with their alcoholic mother. She made new friends and couldn't help but notice that one guy who always seem to be appearing everywhere she went.

The Harder I Fall is a touching story on hardships, loss, friendship and family. Becca has difficulties opening up to anyone but she managed to do that it the end and made some great friends who stood by her side in times of need. Plus, I like how protective she was over her brother. She seemed to be more of a mother than a sister to him. Levi, the stalker guy, is a character I like and dislike at the same time. He's a funny guy and I like reading his somewhat witty conversations and how focused he was on spoiling Becca. His parents were absolutely wonderful and sweet on Becca! They even came to help when Becca's brother, Chad, got into some serious problems. It was probably in the middle part which I came to take a certain dislike to Levi because of his sudden decision and it was painful to read Becca's emotions from there on. I was really glad it came to a happy ending, so I forgive Levi. The only thing I find lacking was about Becca's father. We didn't get to know much about him, except the bad part, and there's no resolution between father and daughter. It would be really good if we could have some in-depth insights on his past actions, like why were Becca's parents such drunkards?

Overall, I enjoyed reading The Harder I Fall and how sweet and how painful the story reading process was. It was like I was taken on a roller-coaster ride as I read through Becca's experience. I'd love to read Chad's side of the story, since he got a girlfriend and all. That'd be an interesting read!







About Jessica Gibson

Jessica Gibson is a recovering bookaholic, she's down from four books a week to a more reasonable one. It was that love of words and creativity that made her dream about writing her first book. Thatdream was hidden for years, always put on the back burner, filed away in the "someday" section, until her husband Matt gave her the kick in the pants she needed to actually get off her butt and write.


Jessica and Matt live in Southern California and have a serious addiction to reality tv shows like Pawn Stars and American Restoration. They have one son and hope to add to the family in the near future. Aside from writing, she runs an online event planning business called the Release Day Diva. In addition to novels, Jessica writes and maintains the blog Book on the Bright Side. Keep up with Jessica and her latest releases and events on her blog.
Website       Blog       Facebook     Twitter      Goodreads




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