Monthly Archives: June 2014

Primordial Dust (Sarah Daltry, Nerd Blast)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Synopsis

A princess, trained to behave. An assassin, betrothed to her. A thief, whose eyes she dreams of at night. A kingdom at war, torn apart by the suppression of magic and truth, as well as family secrets that threaten to destroy decades of peace.
Questions of loyalty, of morality, and of free will culminate in a fantasy novel about forging one’s own path and choosing one’s own destiny.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Sarah Daltry writes about the regular people who populate our lives. She’s written works in various genres – romance, erotica, fantasy, horror. Genre isn’t as important as telling a story about people and how their lives unfold. Sarah tends to focus on YA/NA characters but she’s been known to shake it up. Most of her stories are about relationships – romantic, familial, friendly – because love and empathy are the foundation of life. It doesn’t matter if the story is set in contemporary NY, historical Britain, or a fantasy world in the future – human beings are most interesting in the ways they interact with others. This is the principle behind all of Sarah’s stories.

Sarah has spent most of her life in school, from her BA and MA in English and writing to teaching both at the high school and college level. She also loves studying art history and really anything because learning is fun.

When Sarah isn’t writing, she tends to waste a lot of time checking Facebook for pictures of cats, shooting virtual zombies, and simply staring out the window.

TWITTER: @SarahDaltry
FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorSarahDaltry
WEBSITE: http://sarahdaltry.com/
GOODREADS: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7012679.Sarah_Daltry

Giveaway:

Giveaway is open Internationally | Must be 13+ to Enter

3 Winners will receive an E-Copy of Primordial Dust by Sarah Daltry.
1 Winner will receive a $10 Amazon gift card and Swag pack by Sarah Daltry.
1 Winner will receive a Swag Pack by Sarah Daltry.

Posted in book promotion

The Perils of Pleasure (Julie Anne Long, Pennyroyal Series)

2 out of 5 stars

Cut to the Chase:

This book has it all… in fact, the main problem I have with this book is it tries to do too much. We have side plots and intrigues (the countess and the footman, a frame-up for a crime), background love stories (that Colin’s brother Marcus is about to marry the woman Colin’s declared as his one true love), sad, involving backstories (our heroine lost her husband and child and has been making her living as a jill-of-all-trades mercenary of sorts), there’s also a race against time (I think the whole novel takes place in one week), and… added together, it’s just too much. We never get to stay, and truly focus on the hero and heroine. Their relationship is so constantly shrouded in outside forces, inherent mistrust and passion-mixed-with-danger, that even when they do decide they’ve fallen in love it just doesn’t feel real. The characters are interesting, their love scenes are sensual, but at the end, the reader is left thinking: really?

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Posted in Romance

Delta the Fussy Dog

Rec

Recommended, Somewhat Repeatable

This was a cute book in terms of both illustration and drawings. My kids were interested during the tell of it (though not necessarily eager to repeat it right away). The message (eat your veggies kiddos) is not uncommon, but telling it through the story of a fussy dog did actually make it more palatable for my kids.

Posted in Children's/Young Adult

Room (Emma Donoghue)

4 out of 5 stars

Cut to the Chase:
The parts of this book that are good are flat 0ut amazing. The first half of the book in particular is riveting. Told entirely from the perspective of a 5-year-old boy (Jack) who is trapped in an 11ft by 11ft room with his mother, both of them held captive by a kidnapper/rapist Jack refers to as Old Nick, their daily routines, discovering what their world entails (and what it doesn’t), is just mesmerizing. However, the second half (spoilers ahead), from the escape attempt to everything that comes after becomes, quite often, frustrating. It feels like what our narrator understands (and doesn’t) isn’t growing so much as shifting/jumping back and forth (and it’s completely unclear how much of this is intentional versus meant to shown the narrator’s confused state). The pacing necessarily feels slower, and though I still finished it, it was far less compelling. Still a very well written, creative, emotional read, just ended on more of a whimper (especially compared to the fantastic opening).

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Posted in Literary Fiction

Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus

Recommended, Not Repeatable

This is a cute, humorous, spoilt/manipulative kid-drawn-as-a-pigeon who just wants one thing: to drive the bus! He doesn’t give up. He begs, he pleads, he cajoles, bribes, and even tries to guilt trip… anything to be allowed to drive the bus! Honestly… it didn’t make me laugh out loud, but I have friends who love it, and I can see why. For both me and my toddlers this was more of a read-it-once and done than a add-to-library with love and tenderness… Still, it was worth reading once, and had a very cute premise.

Posted in Children's/Young Adult

Whitney, My Love (Judith McNaught)

2.5 out of 5 stars

Cut to the Chase:
This was a roller coaster of a read for me. For every good thing (nice writing, interesting characters, sympathetic situations), there’s at least one bad/dealbreaker (misogynist hero who doesn’t really change, cringe-worthy examples of said chauvinism in the form of spanking and near-rape). McNaught’s writing is good enough, and I was invested enough that I finished the novel, but… not happily. There are so many *cue drama* Stupid Misunderstandings, that you find yourself wondering if they’ll ever truly be happy, and while the female protagonist does seem to gradually mature, it feels like the only journey our hero’s gone through is the realization that all women (now, excepting his mother and wife) are awful.

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Posted in Romance

Lord of Wicked Intentions (Lorraine Heath, Lost Lords #3)

4.5 out of 5 stars

Cut to the Chase:

The premise is, perhaps, the hardest part to accept here: a born on the wrong sides of the sheets heroine, the by blow of an earl who’s led a pampered life, is sold off by her half-brother to be a mistress to the highest bidder. Our hero, who has no interest in keeping a mistress acts impulsively and claims her for his own. After some negotiating, he convinces her that being a wealthy man’s pampered mistress would be far better than taking her chances, practically penniless, on the streets. Now, once you get over the premise (as well as odd little details here and there that may pop you out of the story), it’s actually a very engaging read. Though we go delve into overly-dramatic-twists every now and again, these are characters that you like and believe: their choices are measured, thoughtful, and, even when you don’t agree with them, you understand them. At its heart, this is an engaging, fulfilling love story, great for the escapist in us.

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Posted in Romance

The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Prisoner’s Dilemma (Book #3, Trenton Lee Stewart)

4 out of 5 stars


Cut to the Chase:
Though it’s not my favorite in the series, it’s a fitting, well-written ending for the main Benedict Society trilogy. We get to see nice resolutions to all of the individual mysteries/background stories that still had any dangling bits, and we get a resolution with our main villain (Mr. Curtain) who has been with us since the beginning. The things that you’ve been wondering about (like when are these kids, who are constantly outsmarting adults, going to perhaps outsmart themselves?) get addressed, and it’s a more quickly paced book than the others. Some of it feels a little too “pat” and I’m not a huge fan of the arc Constance in particular takes… but otherwise, it’s a worthy end to the series.

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Posted in Children's/Young Adult

The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Perilous Journey (#2 in the series, Trenton Lee Stewart)

4 out of 5 stars

Cut to the Chase:

This is a great middle school read with a fun cast of characters and a nicely balanced adventure/good vs. evil story line. It doesn’t have quite the charm of the first book (often a problem with sequels) and some of the characters seem to be going through some growing pains, not all of which are fun to read about. Most of the book I would have rated as a 4.5/5-star read, but some end-of-book shenanigans (that are somehow less believable than the rest of the genius-kids-against-mad-evil-scientist set-up, left me feeling disappointed, thus lowering the rating to 4. Still a worthy read, still going to read the rest of the series, but the first book was definitely more balanced than this one.

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Posted in Children's/Young Adult

This is Not My Hat (Jon Klassen)

4 out of 5 Stars

What a cute follow-up to Klassen’s This is Not My Hat! Instead of the bear-who-desperately-wants-his-hat-back storyline, we have a little fish who has stolen a hat, and thinks he’s going to get away with it!

(spoiler alert… yes, for a children’s book!)

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Posted in Children's/Young Adult