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Review – Welcome to Sortilege Falls Grape Merrieweather Book 1Welcome To Sortilege Falls by Libby Heily
Series: Grape Merriweather,
Published by Fire & Ice Young Adult Books on May 31st 2016
Genres: YA, Paranormal, Mystery
Pages: 250
Goodreads
Amazon

Sixteen-year-old Grape Merriweather has just moved to Sortilege Falls and already she knows something isn't right. A small pack of teenage models, too beautiful for words, holds the town in their sway. The models have no plans on making Grape's life easy. But no matter how cruel they are to Grape and the other “Normals”, no one can stay angry with them for long.
Grape's life changes for the better, or so she thinks, when Mandy, the only “nice” model, befriends her. But that’s when the trouble truly begins. Mandy's friendship places Grape smack in the middle of a medical mystery that has the entire town on edge. One by one, the models fall ill from an incurable disease. Grape quickly realizes that the models' parents are hiding a secret, even as they watch their children die. To save her only friend, Grape will have to find the truth–and that means putting her life in danger.

Grape is going to a new school at Sortilege Falls. She doesn’t mind in that its what is best for her family. The town seems strange in their are two types of people in the town models and normals. The models seem to get whatever they want and draw lots of attention. Suddenly they all start to become sick and Grape gets suspicious. She starts to investigate and what she finds out could be dangerous for all involved.

In an Oyster Shell – An easy read with a great mystery.

The Pearls –  I found the story to have an interesting premise. That there was a group of people that were more beautiful than norms. It was weird and I liked it. I  liked how the main character Grape was able to be enamored but it didn’t stop her with being friends with the models. This ultimately made the story work really well in the end.

I liked the setting of a small town. It made the dynamics between the models and the norms more striking. I liked that this town was mysterious.

The Sand – I found the writing of this book to be dry in the beginning. I had a hard time connecting to the story and the main character for 20% of the book.

3.5 Pearls

3.5 Stars

About Libby Heily

I was born during a blizzard. I’m told it was pretty cool, but I have no memory of that time. I grew up in two tiny towns in Virginia and spent most of my twenties moving around the US. I’ve lived in Virginia, Florida, Missouri, and Washington. I’ve settled down, for now, in Raleigh, North Carolina.

I’m a writer and improviser. I studied acting in college but spent more time rewriting lines than memorizing them. My first play, Fourth Wall, was produced my junior year. Since then, I’ve written several full length plays, one acts, and screenplays. I started writing fiction in my late twenties. Now, I focus mainly on novels but still dabble in theater.

Fun facts about me: There are none. I’m sorry to disappoint you so soon. But, I do love to read, write, and run. My hubby is my favorite person on earth. Dogs are my second favorite. All dogs. Know that. I love orange juice, especially when it’s mixed with club soda. Carbonation is better than alcohol. Jaws is my favorite movie. Everything I’ve said so far is true.

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Sunday Post – August 28

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The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted at the  Caffeinated Book Reviewer. It’s a chance to share news~ A post to recap the past week on your blog and showcase books and things we have received. Share news about what is coming up on our blog for the week ahead. See rules here: Sunday Post Meme

This Week In Review – Click on image for review.

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Feature & Follow – Top 5 Book Boyfriends

Discussion – Selling ARC’s

Coming Up – 

In Review –

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On Tour –

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Question of the Week – What is your favorite late summer treat? Mine is berries and cream.

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Friday Coffee & Bookish Speaks – Selling ARCs

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I’m back home today! Drinking my fresh roasted coffee with cream!

What are you drinking?

I was reading someone’s blog post when I was inspired by this post. Let me first start out by saying I WOULD NEVER! I feel like getting ARC’s (advanced readers copies) is a huge honor. Like someone is letting you hold their newborn baby! They are trusting you with their book baby.  There is an agreement that you will not sell or distribute the author’s content. You get ARC’s to do reviews help the author out while you get the benefit of being one of the first to read the story.

The reason I am even bringing this up today is I accidently bought an ARC from a used bookstore. I didn’t notice until  I got home that it was an ARC! I don’t regret buying it because I will handle it with the proper care the previous owner should have. I won’t sell it. If I don’t want to keep it I will pass it along to one you, my readers who I trust will also handle with care. I’m not sure if I would have bought it had I been paying attention. It goes against principle, for me. The person shouldn’t have sold it.

On the other hand, I got the book off the market, though it shouldn’t have been there in the first place. So there is that. I can’t go buying everybody’s mistakes it would cause me to go broke!

So it worked out in this instance, but if I am faced with this problem again I’m  not sure if I would buy it or not. Being that it was on the shelf it had already been sold,  I think I might buy the ARC to get it off the market. It will depend on a lot of factors. Hopefully, it does not happen again.

I am disappointed that this is even an issue. I assume the copy belonged to a book blogger or librarian. Who else gets ARCs? To that person, I say shame on you! You are giving reviewers a bad rap. You are the reason authors have to put disclaimers on their books.

As a writer, I appreciate the hard work that goes behind making original content. That’s why I have respect for other peoples work and I don’t share. That copy was given to me like I said it’s an honor and I appreciate it.

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Feature & Follow – Top 5 Book Boyfriends

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I’m sorry to disappoint but I don’t do book boyfriends. I am happily married and find myself satisfied romanticly. I honestly don’t see the fascination with getting enamored by fictional men. The closest I’ve gotten is the lead in All Shook Up if I did book boyfriends Casey Nolan would be one of them!

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Review – Summer at Rose Island

Review – Summer at Rose IslandSummer at Rose Island by Holly Martin
Published by Bookouture on May 13th 2016
Pages: 311
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Amazon

Fall in love with the gorgeous seaside town of White Cliff Bay this summer and enjoy long sunny days, beautiful beaches and… a little romance.
Darcy Davenport is ready for a fresh start. Determined to leave a string of disastrous jobs and relationships behind her, she can’t wait to explore White Cliff Bay and meet the locals.
When Darcy swims in the crystal clear waters of the bay, she discovers the charming Rose Island Lighthouse. But it’s not just the beautiful building that she finds so intriguing…
Riley Eddison doesn’t want change. Desperate to escape the memories of his past, he lives a life of solitude in the lighthouse. Yet he can’t help but notice the gorgeous woman who swims out to his island one day.
Darcy is drawn to the mysterious and sexy Riley, but when it seems the town is trying to demolish his home, she soon finds herself having to pick sides.
She’s fallen in love with White Cliff Bay. But is that all Darcy’s fallen for?
Pull up a deck chair, sink back with a bowl of strawberry ice cream and pick up the summer read you won’t be able to put down.

Darcy has moved to White Cliff Bay to be close to the sea and the memories of her aunt. She is taken with the lighthouse at Rose Island. Though not so taken at first, with the grumpy owner. She finds to her dismay that the lighthouse is to be torn down, she starts a campaign to save it. In trying to save the lighthouse she falls for its owner Riley. Will she save the lighthouse? What will come of her and Riley?

In an Oyster Shell – Another laugh out loud heartwarming read. I’ve learned to expect nothing less from Holly Martin.

The Pearls –  The setting of this series has me hooked. The small town of White Cliff Bay had me coming back again and again. It’s a small town with great characters set quaintly by the sea. What’s not to love.

The character of this story are well developed and really funny. I like that we get to see characters from other books in the series. It makes the story being told come even more alive. I got lost in the story because I love the characters. I really care what happens to them. I love that we get to see so much from Libby and George the couple from the last book Snowflake on Silver Cove. 

The romance of this book was sweet. Though this time it was a little over the top. I liked the interaction of Riley and Darcy. I liked that she was firey and he was a broody songwriter. It made for a hot romance.

The Sand – The romance was a little too sappy this time. There were some really sentimental moments that made me read through that section quickly.

3.5 Stars

About Holly Martin

I live in sunny Bedfordshire in a house with round windows. I studied media at university which led to a very glitzy career as a hotel receptionist followed by a even more glamorous two years working in a bank. The moment that one of my colleagues received the much coveted carriage clock for fifteen years service was the moment when I knew I had to escape. I quit my job and returned to university to train to be a teacher. Three years later, I emerged wide eyed and terrified that I now had responsibility for the development of thirty young minds. I taught for four years before History Off The Page came to my school to do a Tudor day. I now drive round the country in my little white van, dressing up as a Viking one day and an Egyptian High Priestess the next.

I love to write. The characters do exactly what I want them to do, most of the time. Sometimes they do seem to go off and do their own thing without my permission. It is complete escapism into a world where I have full control.

I’ve been writing for four years now, every spare second I have, I’m scribbling ideas in a notebook or typing a scene on my laptop. I have written three romantic fiction books. Changing Casanova and The Chainsaw Masquerade were recently shortlisted for the Festival of Romance New Talent Award. My short story, One Hundred Proposals, won the Belinda Jones Travel Club short story competition and was published in the Sunlounger anthology.

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Review – Cinderella Theorem by Kristee Ravan

Review – Cinderella Theorem by Kristee RavanThe Cinderella Theorem by Kristee Ravan
Series: The Lily Sparrow Chronicles #1
Published by Amazon Digital Services on March 17, 2014
Genres: YA, Fantasy
Pages: 390
Source: YA Bound Book Tours

I received this book for free from YA Bound Book Tours in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Goodreads
Amazon

Alternate cover for this ASIN can be found here
Fairy tales are naturally non-mathematical. That is a fact, and fifteen-year-old Lily Sparrow loves factual, mathematical logic. So when her mother confesses that Lily’s deceased father is (a) not dead, (b) coming to dinner, and (c) the ruler of a fairy tale kingdom accessible through the upstairs bathtub, Lily clings to her math to help her make sense of this new double life (1 life in the real world + 1 secret life in the fairy tale world = a double life).
Even though it’s not mathematical, Lily finds herself being pulled into a mystery involving an unhappy Cinderella, a greasy sycophant called Levi, and a slew of vanishing fairy tale characters. Racing against the clock, with a sound mathematical plan, Lily attempts to save her fairy tale friends while proving that normality = happiness.

Lily is logical, everything can be reduced to a mathematical equation. That is until, she finds out her father who she thought was dead was really alive. He was kept from her due to a law in their magical kingdom of which she is heir to the throne. Her father is the protector of fairy tales and her mother is the queen making her the princess. Lily holds fast that everything can be mathematical and tries to apply this logic to her new life in the kingdom. It makes for some radical changes that might have some unsavory consequences.

In an Oyster Shell – This was a sweet imaginative story that was well worth reading.

The Pearls –  A story about a land where fairy tales live. Count me in! The concept of this story was great. It was fairly well executed save some problems I had with it being very long. It’s almost 400 pages! So this is not a quick read. Yet, the author put so much work into it, I think it all works out in the end.

The setting was magical. I loved it. It’s like the author took pages from my heart and wrote them in her book. I love fairy-tales. So I very much enjoyed a land full of them.

I liked the theme of the book. You can’t always apply logic sometimes you have to think outside of that box. I love the turn around that the character does in this story. It tells me that even though we may start out having some hang ups we can grow through them.

The Sand – The main character was unrelatable to me for more than half of the book but when I finally got her, it went really well. The book was exceptionally long and I would have liked if it was a little more succinct.

4 Stars

About Kristee Ravan

Kristee Ravan lives in Oklahoma with her husband, daughter, and pet fish, Val (short for Valentine). She wanted to be many things as she grew up including a general, an artist, and an architect. But she never bothered to say, “I want to be a writer when I grow up.” She was always writing stories and thought of herself as a writer anyway. She sent her first story to a publisher in the sixth grade. (It was rejected – in a nice way.) When she is not making up stories in her head, she enjoys reading, juggling, green smoothies, playing dollhouse with her daughter, and hearing from her fans.

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Review – Behind Closed Doors B.A. Paris

Review – Behind Closed Doors B.A. ParisBehind Closed Doors by B.A. Paris
Published by St. Martin's Press on August 9th 2016
Genres: Thriller
Pages: 304
Source: Publicist

I received this book for free from Publicist in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Goodreads
Amazon

Everyone knows a couple like Jack and Grace: he has looks and wealth, she has charm and elegance. You'd like to get to know Grace better. But it's difficult, because you realize Jack and Grace are never apart. Some might call this true love.
Picture this: a dinner party at their perfect home, the conversation and wine flowing. They appear to be in their element while entertaining. And Grace's friends are eager to reciprocate with lunch the following week. Grace wants to go, but knows she never will. Her friends call—so why doesn't Grace ever answer the phone? And how can she cook such elaborate meals but remain so slim?
And why are there bars on one of the bedroom windows?
The perfect marriage? Or the perfect lie?

Grace has had bad luck with men due to the fact she has taken responsibility for her sister Millie has down syndrome. All that changes when Jack comes into her life he seems to love Grace and accept Millie. After they marry Grace finds out Jack’s true intentions and is trapped. Will she be able to escape his grasp and save her family?

In an Oyster Shell – It was a disturbing read with a theme of domestic abuse. I was very uncomfortable with this book, though I did like the end.

The Pearls – The main thing about this book is the plot. Even though I found it extremely disturbing the plot was well thought out and executed.

The author expressed boldly through the characters. She didn’t hold back on the antagonist. He was frightening in who he was and that he was very comfortable with that. There was something redemptive to be found in the main character, which was a welcome contrast.

The ending is poetic and there are some ends that justify the means which balance out the bleak parts of the story.

The Sand – The book has a theme of domestic abuse, one that I did not appreciate. I appreciate a good thriller but I would say this was more of a sensational shock read than a thriller. It was extremely disturbing and I’m sad I read it.

2 Pearls

2 Stars

About B.A. Paris

B A Paris grew up in England but has spent most of her adult life in France. She has worked both in finance and as a teacher and has five daughters. Behind Closed Doors is her first novel.

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Sunday Post – August 21st

sunday-post

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted here @ Caffeinated Book Reviewer. It’s a chance to share news~ A post to recap the past week on your blog and showcase books and things we have received. Share news about what is coming up on our blog for the week ahead. See rules here: Sunday Post Meme

This Week In Review – Click on image for review.

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On Tour – 

Under a Million Stars tour banner ASU_BlitzBadge

Feautre and Follow – Favorite opening scenes.

Friday Coffe & Bookish Speaks – Author Feedback.

Coming up This week – 

Reviews – 

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Question of the week – What’s your favorite part of the new school year? Mine is is getting back into a routine.

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Today I am drinking an Italian fresh roasted coffee that was left on our doorstep as a surprise!

What are you drinking?

I have to be careful with this topic because it’s a touchy one for me. When I say author feedback I am talking about their feedback on my reviews. Of course, I appreciate when an author likes my review and they express it makes them feel good. The point of my book blog is to be encouraging to authors.

Yet, sometimes that encouragement comes in the form of a critique. When I get a defensive feedback because of the critique part – I’m not a fan. Especially when it’s done in my comment section. When I critique an author it’s for their edification not up for debate. I have had a couple of authors give me feedback publicly on things they didn’t like about the review. Like I said, I’m not a fan of that. Yet, I am learning, it comes with the territory.

I wouldn’t say I have a right perspective about this. I confess I am super sensitive to feedback I perceive as negative. I work really hard to give an honest and fair  review. Sometimes this includes pointing out what didn’t go so well. If you are going to be defensive about it a) reconsider your career as an author -a big part of your career is based on readers feedback take it like a grown up! b) If you still want to be an author but feel the need to comment, be professional about it. I would prefer if you contacted me in private.  Some authors are like petulant children and it makes me upset.

In conclusion, most of the time author feedback is great from the professional ones who are eager for a good opinion and are most appreciative. Thankfully only once in a while do you get an author who acts unprofessionaly. I just take it in stride because when it’s good its great and for all the times authors are excited I can stand for the few times they are not. Yet personally I wish they would keep their defensiveness to themselves. How exhausting it would be as an author to defend every critique you didn’t like! I know I find it exhausting being the recipient of it.

How do you feel about author feedback on your reviews? How do you think authors should handle critiques?

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Feature & Follow

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Feature and Follow is hosted by Allison Can Read and Parajunkee. 

This week we are talking about our favorite opening scenes.

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I must confess I remember generalities of a book but unless it was recent I don’t remember specifics. So I don’t remember opening scenes. Yet, I just happen to be really impressed with the opening scene for Under A Million Stars, a book I read recently. It was dramatic, poignant and sucked you right into the story. Check out my review –

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