Tag Archives: Alma Katsu

Giveaway! Win a Complete Set of THE TAKER Trilogy + $50 Gift Card!


To celebrate the publication of The Descent, one of my favorite authors, Alma Katsu, has a fantastic giveaway going on until January 14th. THREE WINNERS (U.S. only) will win the complete The Taker Trilogy in paperback, PLUS a $50 gift card from Amazon, Barnes & Noble or iTunes, plus some Taker swag! If you’ve been following this blog, you know how *taken* I am with this trilogy (ha ha terrible pun). I just read the final book in the series and loved it (you can read my review here.)

It’s hard to sum up what this series is about, so here’s a short blurb from Alma’s website:

A young woman learns that love can make the impossible possible—but the greater the love, the greater its price. Historical and romantic elements combine with fantasy and suspense to tell a unique story of love and loss, betrayal and redemption.

Check out the story descriptions on Goodreads: * The Taker

The Reckoning * The Descent

Please remember that this giveaway is U.S. only! Big thanks to Alma for this fantastic giveaway! Ready to enter? Simply click the Rafflecopter button below:

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Filed under Book Promotion, Giveaways

Book Review Giveaway – Win a December Review Book!

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It’s time once more for me to give away one of the books I reviewed last month! It was a slow reading month for me, meaning I read too slowly. I only reviewed five books in December, but they all received four stars or higher, so you really can’t go wrong with any of them. For December, J.T. Geissinger was my winner, as I read her latest Night Prowler book as well as a short novella she recently published. Both received five stars.

This month’s giveaway is easy: you simply need to leave me a comment on this post, and you will be entered to win. If you share the giveaway in any way, you can earn an extra entry. Simple, right? One winner will get to choose one of these five books, but I have a twist this month. Because The Last Vampire is so short, if you win, you will receive your choice of one of the other four books, as well as an e-book of The Last Vampire, provided you have a Kindle. This book is available exclusively for Kindle, so if you win and you don’t have a Kindle, that part of the giveaway won’t apply. The giveaway is International, provided the Book Depository ships to your country (please check here if you’re not sure). Here are the books I reviewed last month (click on the covers to go to Goodreads, and click on the book titles to read my reviews):

edgeofdarkness  The Last Vampire  The Descent                                Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000040_00012]    Roomies

Edge of Darkness by J.T. Geissinger. five stars This is Book #4 in the series, but you can easily read it as a stand-alone. No previous Night Prowler experience necessary!

The Last Vampire by J.T. Geissinger. five stars This novella/short story is so good, I hope J.T. writes more of these! **Bonus e-book for Kindle to the winner, in addition to one of the other four books!

The Descent by Alma Katsu. four and a half The final book in Katsu’s The Taker trilogy, this one really can’t be read until you’ve experienced the rest of the series.

The Book of Apex: Volume 4 of Apex Magazine, edited by Lynne M. Thomas. four stars This strong short story collection brings together thirty-three short stories from Apex Magazine. If you love genre-bending fiction written by talented writers with lots of imagination, you’ll love these stories.

Roomies by Sara Zarr & Tara Altebrando. four starsThis contemporary new adult focuses on the lives of two teens who are about to leave home for college. I enjoyed this one so much!

To enter, just leave me a comment below. You can tell me which of these books you’re most excited about, or anything else you’d like to comment on. You can share this post via Twitter, Facebook or any other option (see the share buttons below) and let me know in the comments how you shared, and I’ll give you an extra entry. That’s it! Thanks for entering, and good luck:)


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THE DESCENT (THE TAKER #3) by Alma Katsu – Review

The Descent 3D

The Descent (The Taker #3) by Alma Katsu
Genre: Adult Paranormal
Publisher: Gallery Books
Release date: January 7 2014
Source: ARC from author
Pages: 352

four and a half

In a word: A mysterious island setting, a visit to the Underworld, described in lush prose that made me feel as if I were there, and a worthy finale to a dangerous and intriguing series.

Without saying a word or even thinking about it too strenuously, he made the temperature begin to fall. A frosty veil of white started to blossom over the black rocks. Plumes of breath rose over the sleeping goats. Where the sea met rock, a ring of ice began to form, then spread out to the sea, until the island was encircled by a huge disk of thick ice. Adair tried not to be surprised, because he knew that—in some way that wasn’t clear to him but was nonetheless undeniable—he’d willed this change to happen.

**Alma has a fantastic giveaway that will start on January 7th, The Descent‘s release day! I’ll be posting about it then, so don’t forget to stop by and enter!

**Mild spoilers ahead for The Taker and The Reckoning.

Lanore and Adair have had quite the rocky relationship. While Lanore spent most of the last book (The Reckoning) running away from and trying to stay one step ahead of Adair, in The Descent she realizes that Adair is the only person in the world who possesses the ability to help her, and so she desperately tries to find him. The dreamlike quality of The Descent felt much different than the previous two books, where the character of Adair is portrayed as a very dangerous man who wields control over his “companions,” as he calls those people fortunate (or unfortunate, depending on how you see it) enough to have been granted immortality by Adair. But I enjoyed this difference and once more was swept up in Katsu’s storytelling, never quite sure what she had in store for her readers. Newbies take note: if you haven’t read the first two books, you may be out of your element if you start The Descent first. This isn’t a stand-alone story, and the series is best enjoyed by starting at the beginning.

When the story opens, Lanore has been having nightmares about her former lover Jonathan, a man who has been dead for some time. In her dreams, Jonathan is being imprisoned and tortured in the underworld, and Lanore is sure the dreams are real. With no other options, she decides to seek out Adair, a man with the power to send Lanore herself to the underworld to rescue Jonathan. She finds Adair on a tiny, secluded island off the coast of Italy, but convincing him to help her may be impossible. A spark of jealousy flares when Lanore realizes that Adair is playing host to two young women named Terry and Robin, tourists who are holing up with Adair and sharing his bed at night. When she finally convinces him to help her, Lanore is not prepared for the trials that await her, and Adair is not prepared for the feelings he still has for Lanore, feelings he thought were gone for good after Lanore betrayed him. Can Adair get Lanore back, or will she be forced to stay in the underworld forever?

One of Katsu’s talents is creating vivid worlds that feel utterly foreign, yet once you experience them, you can’t imagine the story written any other way. My absolute favorite parts of The Descent were the scenes that took place on the secluded island where Adair is hiding. The fact that Lanore has a hard time even finding this place sets the reader up for a very surreal experience once she gets there. Adair’s immense house is built nearly on the edge of a cliff, and access to it is limited, which made me feel as if the island itself were a living thing, trying to keep Lanore away. When she finally gets inside, the interior appears larger than the outside, and she gets lost in its winding and dark hallways more than once. The strangeness of the girls who are staying with Adair also added to the otherworldly feeling of unease swirling around the house.

When Lanore gets to the underworld—and she does eventually—Katsu again creates a magical yet unsettling world where doorways lead to unexpected places, and past and present seem to exist at the same time.

The other thing I loved about this book were the glimpses into Adair’s past. As Adair stands watch over Lanore’s body while her soul visits the underworld, he dreams of his life before he was an immortal being, when he was fifteen years old in 1262 Venice. As a boy, Adair is desperate to learn as much as he can about alchemy, and this passion drives him to become the Adair we know from the first two books. These flashback scenes were some of my favorites, and I enjoyed seeing Adair’s vulnerable side.

The Descent is oddly light on action, as much of the story is told in a static dream state. This didn’t bother me too much, but I think it did have an effect on the overall pace of the story, which felt a bit uneven. As I neared the end of the story, I was wondering how Katsu was going to wrap things up with only pages left to go. The ending did feel rushed, and several surprises at the end felt just a little too convenient to me. I wanted more—more pages, more explanations, and more character development. I thought that Terry and Robin had terrific potential, but their few tantalizing scenes weren’t enough for me to get a complete feeling for their characters.

But this series is still one of my favorites, even if I’m not sure I like the way it ended. Katsu has created unique characters in Adair and Lanore, and after all they’ve been through, it was nice to see their relationship come to a satisfying close. Their epic tale continues to linger in my mind, and I’m dying to see what Katsu does next.

Many thanks to the author for supplying a review copy. The above quote was taken from an uncorrected proof, and may differ from the finished book.

Don’t miss the first two books in the series!

The Taker (my review)

The Reckoning (my review)

Find The Descent:

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Have you read this series? I’d love to know what you think!


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Kindle Big Deal Alert! THE RECKONING by Alma Katsu


Do you own a Kindle? Are you looking for a deal? Better yet, are you looking for a story that is gorgeously written, romantic yet dangerous, and has everything a great story should have? Then you should be reading Alma Katsu’s The Taker Trilogy! Starting today (December 8th) and going through December 29th, the second book in Alma’s trilogy, The Reckoning, is a Kindle Big Deal at only $1.99! This is the perfect opportunity to catch up on the series, or simply dive into it if you’re new to these books. This Kindle Big Deal is available only in the U.S. on Kindle (sorry UK folks!)

The Reckoning2

About The Reckoning:

Lanore McIlvrae is the kind of woman who will do anything for love. Including imprisoning the man who loves her behind a wall of brick and stone.

She had no choice but to entomb Adair, her nemesis, to save Jonathan, the boy she grew up with in a remote Maine town in the early 1800s and the man she thought she would be with forever. But Adair had other plans for her. He used his mysterious, otherworldly powers to give her eternal life, but Lanore learned too late that there was a price for this gift: to spend eternity with him. And though he is handsome and charming, behind Adair’s seductive façade is the stuff of nightmares. He is a monster in the flesh, and he wants Lanore to love him for all of time.

Now, two hundred years after imprisoning Adair, Lanore is trying to atone for her sins. She has given away the treasures she’s collected over her many lifetimes in order to purge her past and clear the way for a future with her new lover, Luke Findley. But, while viewing these items at an exhibit at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, Lanore suddenly is aware that the thing she’s been dreading for two hundred years has caught up to her: Adair has escaped from his prison. He’s free— and he will come looking for her. And she has no idea how she will save herself.

With the stunningly imaginative storytelling and rich characterizations that fascinated readers worldwide and made The Taker a singular and memorable literary debut and an international sensation, Alma Katsu once again delivers “a powerful evocation of the dark side of romantic love” (Publishers Weekly) in her breathtaking new novel.

Click here to purchase the Kindle Big Deal now!

And if you’re new to the series, check out The Taker (Book 1), and the upcoming finale to Adair’s story, The Descent, out in January:

The Taker for Amazon Kindle is only $6.83! If you’ve already read The Reckoning, you can pre-order The Descent here.

This is a series I highly recommend. I’ve been a fan of Alma’s since the beginning, and you can read my reviews of The Taker and The Reckoning. I’ll be reading The Descent soon, so stayed tuned for my review!

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What’s On My Plate – December 2013

On My Plate

It’s December, folks! Can you believe it? I swear time moves faster the older you get…Only one more month to squeeze in books for 2013. One more month to finish reading challenges. One more month to work on goals set for the year. And in the middle of all the book stuff, there’s all the holiday excitement and stress to get through! My plan is to enjoy all of it, even if I don’t get to all the books I wanted to (I won’t!) or complete all my reading challenges (nope!). The best thing about the end of the year is that the new year is on its way, and everyone gets a chance to start fresh. I also have to mention that I love December here on WordPress, because I get to have snow on my blog:) I also love December because—advent calendars!

Advent calendar

This year I bought each of my kids a chocolate advent calendar from Whole Foods, as well as a *splurge* Playmobil advent calendar! Each day has a different Playmobil figure, and lots of them are really cute animals, like a raccoon and the squirrels we opened today:)

So, as far as bookish things go, here’s what’s on my plate this month:

For Review from NetGalley:


Roomies by Sara Zarr & Tara Altebrando. This is far from my usual go-to books, but I’ve heard good things about it, plus I believe this was a “download now” book on NetGalley, which is why I picked it up.

ARCs from publishers:

Edge of Darkness by J.T. Geissinger. I’m reading this right now, and OMG, J.T. never disappoints me! If you haven’t read her Night Prowler series, you are really missing out. That is if you enjoy paranormal romance. And when I say “romance” I mean hot, sexy, smoldering looks that eventually lead to hot sex!  I’m devouring this, and I’ll most likely finish it today:) (And then my friend Amy can read it!)

The Almost Girl by Amalie Howard. This is a debut from Strange Chemistry, and I’m participating in Amalie’s blog tour in January.

The Descent by Alma Katsu. Seriously, this is an awesome month for me! Alma, Alma, where do I start? This is the third book in her The Taker Trilogy, and I couldn’t be happier to have received an ARC from Alma to read and review. I’ve been a big fan of hers from the beginning, and I’m dying to see how things end up for Adair and Co.

The Rabbit Back Literature Society by Pasi Ilmari Jääskeläinen. Yes, his name is a mouthful. But I love this publisher (Pushkin Press) and one reviewer is even comparing this to Donna Tartt’s The Secret History, one of my all-time favorite books!

The Book of Apex: Volume 4 of Apex Magazine by various authors. Apex is another favorite small publisher of mine, just in case you haven’t been reading this blog. I’m looking forward to this collection of short stories from Apex Magazine.

For Book Club:

The Hive

The Hive by Gill Hornby. This sounds like a quick, fun read. It’s about a group of moms and their adventures in elementary school. I’m sure it will bring back many fond (or not so fond!) memories of my own experiences volunteering for the PTA.

Giveaway Hops & More:

Books, Bones & Buffy Book Review Giveaway! This month I’m unveiling a new monthly giveaway that I’m holding here on the blog. I’ve been thinking about this for a while, and what better month to start than December! Because my greatest love is sharing the books I love with you guys, I’ll be giving one winner each month a choice of a book that I reviewed the previous month. So this month, one international winner will get to pick a book from my November reviews. Normally I’ll start this on the first of the month, but I’m a little behind, so look for this giveaway to start either tomorrow or Tuesday. For a taste of what you can win, check out my November reviews below!

December New Release Giveaway Hop, hosted by Book Twirps. I love this hop, and I’ve noticed lots of my readers love it too! If you are a blogger and want to join, you can still sign up at Book Twirps.

Best of 2013 Giveaway Hop hosted by I Am a Reader, Not a Writer. Look for this hop starting December 11th. You can still sign up for this hop as well…

Otherwise, I seem to have a lighter-than-normal reading schedule, so if I have time, I may go back and read some review books that I haven’t had time for, or *gasp* even read a book JUST FOR MYSELF that I want to get to!

Did you miss any of my November reviews? Click on the titles to read them now. Winners this month? Plastic Jesus and The Archived  are my winners with five stars each.

Plastic Jesus by Wayne Simmons
The Archived by Victoria Schwab
The Deaths of Tao by Wesley Chu
The Scroll of Years by Chris Willrich
Cracked by Eliza Crewe
Scion of the Sun by Nicola Marsh
The Curse Keepers by Denise Grover Swank

I hope you’ll join me this month for all the fun!


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Stacking the Shelves (40)


I’m happy to be participating in Stacking the Shelves, hosted by Tynga’s Reviews, where we share our book hauls from the previous week. I have two weeks worth of books to share with you. It turned out to be an excellent week for packages in the mail! I made some awesome purchases, which all arrived this week, and I got some review books in the mail as well. Here’s what I received:

For Review:


The Descent by Alma Katsu. Release date: January 7 2014 (Gallery Books). Alma sent me this herself. She’s one of the few traditionally published authors out there who contacts bloggers directly and asks them if they’d like ARCs of her books! She’s awesome. This is the third book in the series and I’m so excited to see how everything ends up. If you haven’t read The Taker or The Reckoning, you’re missing out. Not for teens, however!  (in my opinion) These are adult-themed books.

Mist by Susan Krinard. I won this from The Qwillery, and I’ve read some pretty good reviews of it. Thanks so much, Sally!

Meat and Garbage Man by Joseph D’Lacey. Soon to be released from Oak Tree Press. I loved D’Lacey’s Black Feathers, and I’m looking forward to reading these earlier books that he wrote, which are being re-released by Oak Tree Press, a small UK publisher. Thank you Tabitha!

Digital ARCs for Review:

Scarecrow by Matthew Pritchard. This book isn’t in the Goodreads database, which makes me a little nervous. It’s from a small UK publisher and comes out next week. Big thanks to my publicist buddy Tabitha for sending me a copy!

Sekret by Lindsay Smith. This was a “read now” on NetGalley, and so I decided to give it a try. Sekret doesn’t come out until next April.

Roomies by Sara Zarr. This sounds so good, and I love the cover. This was also a recent “read now,” and I’m sure I won’t be the only one with this on my list this week.

The Curse Keepers by Denise Grover Swank. OK, so the Goodreads reviews on this one are all over the place. So who knows? It sure sounds good to me, though, and I like the pretty cover:)



Mockingbird by Chuck Wendig. OK, I do realize this is the SECOND book in the series, but Barnes & Noble didn’t have a copy of Blackbirds. I’m dying to read this series, especially since the third book, The Cormorant, is coming out soon. So anyway, I bought Mockingbird, but I’ll have to track down Blackbirds soon. In case you don’t know, Chuck is one of my FAVE authors. And he should be one of yours, if you love weird, urban fantasy that is different from anything else you’ve ever read.

Scorched by Mari Mancusi. Wow this book is gorgeous! Sometimes you really miss out by reading ebooks, and this is one of those times. The boards of the book (when you take off the dust jacket) are printed in full color with artwork of the dragon. Just beautifully designed!

Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea by April Genevieve Tucholke. I’ve been pining to read this for quite a while, and the way my reading schedule is going, I’m going to have to wait a little longer.

Vicious by V.E. Schwab. Oh you guys…this book. I love this book. You can read my review here. I had to own my own copy, since I borrowed an ARC from VICTORIA HERSELF! You. Must. Go. Read. Now.

Doctor Sleep by Stephen King. I’ve heard pretty good things about this sequel to The Shining.

Kinslayer by Jay Kristoff. I love this book too! Jay is an amazingly visual writer, he literally brings his world to life. Reading Kinslayer was such an emotional experience, that as a reader it’s hard not to completely fall into the lives of his characters. You can read my review here.

That’s what’s on my shelves! Please link me up to your book haul post, whichever one you do!


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Stacking the Shelves (23)

STSWelcome to Stacking the Shelves, hosted by Tynga’s Reviews! I love to see what books other bloggers get during the week, and I love to share my new books as well. This week was a particularly fun week for me, because in addition to some new review titles I got a couple of surprises in the mail.


A huge thanks to Lucy at The Reading Date for this amazing stack of ARCs! I entered her contest and frankly forgot all about it. When she told me I’d won the “Anti-Valentine” box, I was thrilled.  She also threw in a cool Comic Con bag! Thanks Lucy:)


Alma Katsu was kind enough to include me in The Companion Club, a group of Adair followers who will help her promote her amazing trilogy. She sent all of us a package with pins, stickers, postcards and other goodies, including a note with this intriguing statement: “Please wear your pin proudly and if you draw blood with it—someone else’s of course, not yours—so much the better.” If you’ve read The Taker and The Reckoning, you’ll understand:) The third book in the trilogy, The Descent,  will be out in 2014.


I pre-ordered my copy of Scarlet by Marissa Meyer from Amazon, and for doing so I got a surprise Scarlet lip gloss in the mail! Thanks to MacMillan for making my daughter very happy:)

e-Books for review from NetGalley & Edelweiss: (click on book covers to go to Goodreads)

Beautiful GoodbyeZenn ScarlettClub MonstrosityThe Sweetest DarkStoker's Manuscript

Beautiful Goodbye by Nancy Runstedler. Release date: July 23 2013 (Dundurn). I had never heard of this publisher before, but I believe they are better known for their non-fiction titles. I don’t have a lot of info on this book, but from the Goodreads description it’s a YA paranormal about three teens and a Ouija board.

Zenn Scarlett by Christian Schoon. Release date: May 7 2013 (Strange Chemistry). I remember getting the news about this acquisition from Angry Robot, and I’m really excited to have a review copy in my hands. You’ve got to click on the cover and read the book description. It’s out-of-this world! I’m really looking forward to this one.

Club Monstrosity by Jesse Petersen. Release date: April 29 2013 (Pocket Star).  This book sounds hilarious! It’s about a group of monsters who form a support group. Wow.

The Sweetest Dark by Shana Abé. Release date: April 9 2013 (Bantam). Set in 1915 England, this story takes place in a boarding school. It’s a historical paranormal and is recommended for fans of Libba Bray (!) and Lauren Kate (!) and gets a blurb from Melissa Marr (!)

Stoker’s Manuscript by Royce Prouty. Release date: June 13 2013 (Putnam Adult). This historical novel blends real events with a mystery that spans many years. I love that is revolves around the novel Dracula.

What did you stack your shelves with this week?


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Link Salad (6)

Link Salad button copyHappy Friday, everyone! I’ve rounded up some fantastic giveaways, some bookishly interesting lists, and a couple of movie related items to share. My goal is to entertain you and add something enjoyable to your day. Here we go!


idesposter2One of my favorite authors, Alma Katsu, has teamed up with fifteen other best-selling authors to bring you The Ides of March Book Giveaway! For every 500 entries, one complete set of the books will be given away, and the contest is open to US/UK and Canada. I am heading over there myself to enter right now. Click here to enter The Ides of March!

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SplinteredOne of my favorite books of the year so far is Splintered by A. G. Howard, and Anita has just announced the title of Book #2 in the series, Unhinged! I am unbelievably excited by this news! Anita is celebrating by giving away a whole bunch of Splintered/Alice In Wonderland-related items on her blog. There’s even jewelry in this giveaway! Click here to enter now!


veniceLove books? Of course you do, otherwise why would you be reading this? This week BuzzFeed gives us the 30 Best Places To Be If You Love Books. Like this quaint bookstore in Venice, complete with a view of a canal! If you love salivating over bookish spaces, click here to read more.

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Bookish muralsFor more bookish drooling, check out FlavorWire’s 20 Bookish Murals from Around the World. I’d love to put one of these murals on my house! Don’t these just make you happy?


Of course, we can’t not mention the Oscars, which were handed out last Sunday. So Seth MacFarlane wasn’t the best host ever, but there were some great moments. Babs sang! Jennifer tripped! If you missed the show, or if you simply want to relive some of the best (and worst) moments, click here to read more.

fork right

Victory TourWho isn’t excited about Catching Fire, the second movie in The Hunger Games trilogy? I know I am! This past week two posters were revealed for the upcoming November 22 release. Tor gives us the scoop and shows you the beautiful and intriguing film posters.

Did you miss last week’s Link Salad? Click here to read now!

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Link Salad (1)

Link Salad button copyWelcome to Link Salad! I know lots of bloggers do roundup posts with links to interesting internet content, and I’ve been coming across so much relevant information lately, that I wanted to start my own roundup of sorts. I’m not sure how often Link Salad will appear, but I’m hoping to make this a weekly feature. Here are some of the fun bookish things I found around the web this past week:

fifty-shades-of-grey-hardcover_510x329Fifty Shades of Grey is a book that just won’t go away. It’s still in the news, and now, after achieving bestsellerdom in paper and digital formats, it’s finally going to be published in, ahem, hardcover. Here’s the article from EW’s Shelf Life.

The Witch SistersAuthor Alma Katsu has written a new short story set in the world of her The Taker trilogy, and it’s only 99 cents on Amazon. I’ve read and reviewed the first two books in the trilogy, The Taker and The Reckoning, and loved them. Book three, The Descent, won’t be out until 2014, but in the meantime The Witch Sisters will help you bridge the gap until book three arrives! Click here to purchase it now!

Subterranean PressSteven R. Boyett, most fabulous writer of fantasy, horror and speculative fiction, has a free novelette in this month’s Subterranean Press called Hard Silver. He’s calling it “fantasy Western,” which is one of my new favorite genre mash-ups. Boyett’s last novel was Mortality Bridge (reviewed here), but it came out almost a year and a half ago, so I’m happy to see something new from him. You can read it for free here.

Madmans jkt Des1.inddAny aspiring authors out there? Are you trying to find an agent? Then you’ll be interested to hear what newly published author Megan Shepherd’s experience at querying her manuscript was like. Megan’s debut The Madman’s Daughter, a retelling of The Island of Dr. Moreau,  had a typically bumpy road to publication, and she gives YA Highway the scoop on how she finally landed an agent. You can read her story here.

Ghost Planet biggerAuthor Sharon Lynn Fisher tells USA Today the top five reasons she loves to blend science fiction and romance, another mash-up genre that I’m loving. Ghost Planet is her sci-fi/romance debut, and I loved it! (You can read my review here.) Check out the USA Today article here.

Shades of EarthBeth Revis, author of the Across the Universe Trilogy, did something unique to promote the last book in the series, Shades of Earth. She and her publisher launched a copy of the book into space. Yes, you read that correctly. You can see the video on EW‘s Shelf Life here.  Is it real? Is it fake? I’m not sure how they did it (if in fact they did), but it sure was a cool idea!

And just because this is so damn funny, I had to throw in this dog video (which has nothing to do with books, but I guarantee it will make you laugh…):

That’s it for this week! Thanks for stopping by:)

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Tammy’s Top Ten Books I Read in 2012

Top Ten Tuesday2Today’s Top Ten Tuesday (hosted by The Broke and the Bookish)  is definitely my favorite of the year! And what a hard Top Ten to narrow down…I read so many wonderful books this year. Every book on my list received a five-star review, but many of my five-star reviews aren’t on this list. Cutting the list down to ten was very painful and agonizing, but in the interest of keeping this a true “Top Ten” list, I did just that. It was interesting to discover that eight out of the ten are adult books, which surprised me since I read a lot of YA as well. So here they are, my faves from the past year! I’m listing them in alphabetical order, so as not to hurt anyone’s feelings:) Oh, and I’m trying out WordPress’ new slide show feature, what do you think?

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1. 11/22/63 by Stephen King. Yes, this book came out in November of 2011, but I didn’t get around to reading it until January. And I’m so glad I did! Although long (849 pages), I loved every word. King writes a tense and engaging time travel novel about the repercussions of changing events in the past (like for example, JFK’s shooting). But it’s a lot more complicated than it seems on the surface. One of my all-time favorite King stories.

2. Cinder by Marissa Meyer.  I love fairy tale re-tellings, and this has got to be one of the most enjoyable ones I’ve ever read. Cinderella as a cyborg?? Yes! This imaginative story is only the first of four books in the series, the next of which comes out in February. So if you loved Cinder, you have a lot to look forward to. You can read my review of Cinder here.

3. Edge of Oblivion by J. T. Geissinger. Wow, this book took me totally by surprise! It’s published by Montlake Romance, a publishing arm of Amazon, and I really wasn’t expecting the quality of writing and story building that I found in this amazing book. Not for kids, though! I’d rate it NC17 if it were a movie:) You can read my review here.

4. The Reckoning by Alma Katsu. The second book in Katsu’s The Taker Trilogy did not disappoint. It was a lush and dangerous descent into the minds of some very fascinating characters, and I can’t wait for the third book in the series, which will hopefully be published in 2013. You can read my review here.

5. The Rook by Daniel O’Malley.  This adult paranormal story was funny, entertaining, confusing, surprising, and amazing! It was one of the most unique stories I read all year, and it has been compared to Harry Potter, X-Men and Ghostbusters. It’s really none of those, but something completely original. I look forward to reading more from this talented writer.

6. The Sisters Brothers by Patrick deWitt. I read this for book club back in March, and was blown away by the violent, gritty and unexpectedly funny Eli and Charlie Sisters, two outlaw killers that seem more human than many of the “good guy” characters I’ve read in other books. Reading this book has given me a fondness for westerns, and I hope to read more like it soon.

7. Something Red by Douglas Nicholas. I don’t usually seek out historical fiction, but this book seemed too good to pass up.  Something Red has some of the best characters I’ve read all year. Mysterious and epic and filled with action as well as tender human moments, I hope more readers discover this amazing book. You can read my review here.

8. Stormdancer by Jay Kristoff. It’s hard for me to describe how much I loved this book. Oddly, I’ve read some really mixed reviews, and I think the reason some people just didn’t get it was that it wasn’t what they were expecting. It’s a beautifully written fantasy with a lovely relationship between a girl and a griffin, but it’s set in a harsh world where lots of bad things happen. Just read it already! You can read my review here.

9. Three Parts Dead by Max Gladstone. Gladstone is a master of world-building, and the odd but compelling city of Alt Coulumb has wonders to spare. I was completely immersed in the story of Tara, Abelard, Cat and Raz and I can’t wait for the sequel next year. You can read my review here.

10. Velveteen by Daniel Marks. I just managed to squeeze this in before this post was due to go up, and I’m so glad I did. Wow. Marks’ wonderful but horrifying depiction of purgatory is tempered by some pretty awesome characters, especially Velveteen, a very angry girl who has died horribly and now wants nothing more than to take revenge on the madman that killed her. Oh, and to get to know the newest and hottest soul in town, Nick. Look for my review coming soon.

I’d love to hear what your top ten books are! Please link me up, or just let me know in the comments! Next week’s Top Ten Tuesday is a freebie, and although it’s Christmas day, I’ll be posting my Top Ten Indie Books of 2012. I read some amazing indies, and they deserve some love as well:)


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