Thursday, September 7, 2017

Hurricane Irma


This is a notice to all of my regular readers, as well as visitors. Due to the situation here in Miami, Florida, I am a bundle of nerves, and am totally unable to concentrate on blogging. I know I need to reply to comments left on my "Can't Wait Wednesday" post. I also need to comment back on those blogs. However, in my current frame of mind, I am unable to do so. I may try to reply later on today, from my cell phone, as much as I can.

We are now under a Hurricane Watch. According to reports, Miami will take a direct hit. Those of you who are believers, please pray for us here in Miami, and all of South Florida.

Thanks to all of you who visit, read and comment regularly! God bless you all! 

 

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Can't Wait Wednesday No. 32: The Delphi Resistance, by Rysa Walker





Welcome to "Can't Wait Wednesday"!
   
This is a weekly event hosted by
Tressa @ Wishful Endings, and inspired by "Waiting On Wednesday", which used to be hosted by
 Jill @ Breaking the Spine.

For more information, please click HERE.

As in the previous meme, this one showcases future releases  we book  bloggers 
are eagerly anticipating!!
There's also a Linky widget, so participating blogs can link up!



Here's my choice for this week!





 The Delphi Resistance
(The Delphi Trilogy, Book 2)
Rysa Walker
Trade Paperback,  460 pages
Skyscape
October 24, 2017    
Fantasy, Young Adult Fiction

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35233720-the-delphi-resistance






What if your mind became your worst enemy?

Struggling with evolving psychic abilities, seventeen-year-old Anna Morgan and her equally exceptional friends are on the run from the ruthless Graham Cregg, leader of a covert operation known as the Delphi Project. Cregg has already killed repeatedly to test Anna’s ability. Now, he and his father, a presidential contender, will stop at nothing to recapture the Delphi adepts, whom they see as weapons to be controlled—or destroyed.

Navigating an increasingly hostile landscape, Anna and her friends form a resistance to rescue those still in the Creggs’ fatal grip. As more gifted kids vanish and public awareness of the Delphi Project grows, so does the opinion that getting rid of the adepts may be a necessary evil.

Yet even as they face off against cold-blooded killers, government operatives, and a public intensely afraid of their psychic powers, the greatest threat to Anna and the resistance may come from within themselves—and their own mysterious abilities could spell their ultimate downfall.




Why I can't wait for this one!

Oh, this truly sounds like a fast-paced,VERY intriguing novel!  And there's a SERIES involved, too!! LOVE it!!
The combination of plot elements here is indeed
WONDERFUL!!  There's certainly plenty of suspense here, as well as a gorgeous prose style. PLUS, there are  paranormal elements, too!! WOWZA!!!!! 



Be sure to check out the AWESOME first book!!


https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30439157-the-delphi-effect








Rysa Walker is the author of the bestselling Chronos Files series. Timebound, the first book in the series, was the Young Adult and Grand Prize winner in the 2013 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Awards.

Rysa grew up on a cattle ranch in the South, where she read every chance she got. On the rare occasion that she gained control of the television, she watched Star Trek and imagined living in the future, on distant planets, or at least in a town big enough to have a stop light.

She currently lives in North Carolina, where she is working on her next series, The Delphi Project. If you see her on social media, please tell her to get back into the writing cave.








What do you think of my choice?
Leave your link below, so I can
come check out your pick(s)!











Sunday, September 3, 2017

Shelf Candy Saturday No. 224: The Amaranth Enchantment, by Julie Berry



Welcome to Shelf Candy Saturday!


*Late Edition*
This is my weekly feature
showcasing beautiful covers!
It also provides information, 
if available, on their 
very talented creators!


Here's my choice for this week!





The Amaranth enchantment
Julie Berry
Hardcover, 320 pages
Bloomsbury USA Children's
March 15, 2009
   Fantasy, Historical Fiction, Romance,
Young Adult Fiction


https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/3843654-the-amaranth-enchantment





My Thoughts About This Cover


Beautiful images can be created not only with paintbrushes and canvas, but with the camera and computer, as well. This is certainly one of them! I LOVE this composition! The lighting is perfect, the colors GORGEOUS, the dress BEAUTIFUL, and that flower, so strategically placed, is STUNNING. 

The background colors perfectly complement the ones in the dress, and actually blend in with them. Basically, the image contains tones of green and red, so perfectly and beautifully balanced, the viewer can scarcely tell where one begins and the other ends.

The dress is beautifully designed, as well. I LOVE all the detailed embroidery on it, as well as its medieval-looking design. 

The model also has a wonderfully enigmatic expression which reminds me of the Mona Lisa, and she looks very sweet, although I do see a certain steel in her eyes, as she steadily gazes out at the viewer.

The title has a nice combination of two fonts, and emphasizes the word "amaranth", which I think is very effective. I also like the contrast between this word and the rest of the title, which uses a classical font.

In short, I do think that this cover is a true masterpiece of book design, and I can't understand why this book is not yet in my collection, as I also LOVE the plot!

Who is responsible for this brilliant cover? Well, her name is Donna Mark, and she's the Art Director at Bloomsbury Publishing. I have only been able to find one link for her -- an interview posted on the blog, A Backwards Story. This interview is from June 1, 2012, and you can access it HERE. Now I'm wondering who the awesome photographer was..... there's no information on that person in the Amazon preview....

And here's yet ANOTHER name to add to my list of favorite cover artists and designers!!




What do you think of 
this week's cover?
Please leave a comment
and let me know!








Friday, September 1, 2017

Book Blogger Hop No. 105: The Bloggiesta



Welcome to the Book Blogger Hop,
hosted by Billy @


For more information, and 
to find out the topic of next week's question, click HERE.


This Week's Question

Do you participate in the Bloggiesta?

(Submitted  by Elizabeth @ 





My Answer

The short and sweet answer is "No". I had never even heard of it until I saw this question. So, of course, I Googled this word. 

Well, it turns out that this is a fun, interesting event, hosted by Suey @ It's All About Books, and Danielle @ There's A Book, that takes place on a bi-annual basis. It's actually a blogging marathon, and they also hold quarterly mini-challenges. Any blog can participate, and the topics are all related to the process of blogging itself, such as blog organization (personal organization is also included) blogging tips, and getting the best from social media.

The event also has Facebook, Google +, and Twitter pages. See the links below.

The name "Bloggiesta" is super cute, and incorporates the Spanish word "fiesta", which means that it's definitely a LOT of fun!

I would love to participate, but I have noticed that these blog posts do take a LOT of time to put together. Most of the posts offer advice that I certainly need for my own blog, lol.

If I think of something REALLY helpful and interesting, I might participate in the next Bloggiesta. Not the mini-challenge coming up in September, but perhaps one of the marathons or mini-challenges next year.

I think this is a great way to acquire more helpful blogging knowledge, as well as find more blogging friends, and I want to thank Elizabeth @ Silver's Reviews for bringing this to my attention, as I had no idea such an event existed! 

There will be a mini-challenge held from Sept. 21st to Sept. 24th. You can access the signup page HERE

Here are the links to find out more information about this event.




Here's a list of links to some very interesting past posts included in mini-challenges, which I know will definitely help me out in my blogging, and might help some of you guys out as well! ENJOY!!  :)





What are your thoughts on
this topic?
If you're participating in this meme,
I'll go comment on your 
own BBH post.
If not, I will then comment on one 
of your blog posts!
Thanks for visiting!!!  
 





Thursday, August 31, 2017

Book Review: Forged In Fire, by Juliette Cross


Forged In Fire
(The Vessel Trilogy, Book 1)
Juliette Cross
Kindle Edition, 345 pages
Entangled Select Otherworld
July 31, 2017
Source: Amazon
New Adult, Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy

Synopsis:
Genevieve Drake has never been the helpless kind of girl, has never needed to be rescued. That is, not until her twentieth birthday when some dude nearly chokes her to death in an alley and a hot stranger splits the guy in half, rips a monster from inside, and incinerates it into ash.

The hot guy? Jude Delacroix—Dominus Daemonum, Master of Demons. Now her guardian, whether she likes it or not. But she’s seriously beginning to like it.

The dude choking her? One of many demons from the underworld trying to abduct or kill Genevieve. As the prime target of the demon prince, Danté, she has no problem accepting Jude’s protection.

Why Genevieve? She’s a Vessel, one born to serve the Light but can be corrupted and used as a weapon for darkness. She had no idea this world even existed. Now, she just wants to survive it.


https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35664640-forged-in-fire?ac=1&from_search=true





This novel came to my attention thanks to a blog tour I recently participated in. I don't read ebooks all that often, but the cover of this one immediately captivated me! Then I read the summary, and ordered it from Amazon right away.

From the moment I began to read, I was fully immersed in this intense plot, with its non-stop action and vivid, totally likeable characters. The world-building, too, contributed to my enjoyment of the novel, as it was quite detailed and very interesting.

A Vessel, as described in this novel, is a woman who can unfortunately be an instrument of evil, as demons can use such Vessels to carry out their dark plans. Genevieve, the female MC, has begun to "awaken" at the age of 20, which is when such women first become aware of their special status.

Demons, who are very physical, as well as very human-looking, vie for possession of Vessels, and this was a pretty frightening thing to me. While reading this novel, it also seemed all too real. Once she had become awakened as a Vessel, Genevieve was immensely attractive to these evil denizens of Hell. There's a hierarchy in Hell, too, as some demons are Princes, while others are Dukes. They also have very frightening and remarkable powers.

The most appealing thing about this novel was the developing relationship between Genevieve and Jude, a Demon Hunter. I loved his concern for her, while at the same time admiring her for resisting his constant protection. The sparks certainly flew between these two! Their romance was electric, dynamic, and full of sexual tension. Their dialogues were exciting, snarky, and I kept "turning" pages on my cell phone's Kindle app to see where these wonderful, exciting interactions of theirs would lead.

Amidst all of the witty dialogues, there was a LOT of action. Demons were constantly coming after Genevieve, and unfortunately, she needed nearly constant protection from Jude.

Here's where I felt this novel didn't quite live up to my expectations. The whole thing was set up, or so I thought, to feature Genevieve as a kick-butt female hero. That wasn't quite how things worked out, though..... I thought she was rescued by Jude far too many times. Although she did show a lot of courage on several occasions (and her father is a  martial arts teacher), she just could not resolve certain situations by herself, and Jude kept showing up just in time to save her. I found this very disappointing, as well as a bit too contrived.

Another aspect of this novel that wasn't to my liking was the detail lavished on the scenes in which Genevieve was harassed and toyed with by a high demon named, ironically enough, Dante. It was not easy reading about just how powerful he was, how easily he could bend her to his will. 

I loved the secondary characters! One of them was Genevieve's mother, who was a talented painter, although she painted rather frightening, surrealistic things. I was fascinated, nevertheless, as I love art. So, a character who creates art will always interest me. I was actually sorry that this one didn't play a larger role in the story. 

Another great character was Mindy, Genevieve's roommate. Although she was a bit too much of an airhead, in my honest opinion, she did care about Genevieve, and was concerned about her burgeoning relationship with Jude.

Yet another great character was Kat, a female demon hunter who sparked Genevieve's jealousy, as she's almost as old as Jude, and far too beautiful and powerful for Genevieve's liking. She turns out to be a great friend to Genevieve, though, as well as a welcome ally and trainer in battling demons. 

And then there's Dante. I have to admit that he's a very well-developed villain. Very believable, very, very scary, too. He was creepy in the extreme, as well as totally ruthless, totally without compassion. (Well, of course, he was a demon!) The paradoxical thing was that he was so very beautiful! Well, the Bible does state that the devil loves to masquerade as an angel of light. Dante was incredibly alluring, at least, until his true colors shone through. Then he was totally terrifying! The scenes he appeared in were the parts of the novel that almost made me stop reading. They also made me wonder if this novel shouldn't be classified as a horror novel as well as an urban fantasy. 

Although I did enjoy this story, I do have some very mixed feelings about it. I found it a bit too scary for my comfort, as I've already mentioned. I guess that was to be expected, though, since it does deal with demons. And again, I was expecting Genevieve to be much more proactive when it came to dealing with all of these horrible demons. She did possess some remarkable powers herself, after all. She just didn't get to use them all that often.

Yet another aspect I didn't like was the unfortunate appearance of "the F bomb", although it wasn't that frequent. Still, I don't like seeing this obnoxious word pop up in novels AT ALL.

On the plus side, this novel was, paradoxically, very clean. Even though it had plenty of sexual tension, there were no sex scenes in it, graphic or otherwise.

In spite of my objections, I will be continuing this trilogy with the next two installments -- Sealed In Sin, and Bound In Black. In the third novel, Genevieve finally awakens into her full powers. I want to see her do some MAJOR butt-kicking and defeat those demons in the end! I also want to find out where her relationship with Jude heads next!
 
MY RATING:





Juliette calls lush, moss-laden Louisiana home, where she lives with her husband, four children, and a black Lab named "Kona". She is a multi-published author of paranormal and fantasy romance. She has a B.A. in Creative Writing from Louisiana State University, an M.Ed. in Gifted Education, and was privileged to study under the award-winning author Ernest J. Gaines in grad school. From the moment she read Jane Eyre as a teenager, she fell in love with the Gothic romance--brooding characters, mysterious settings, persevering heroines, and dark, sexy heroes. Even then, she not only longed to read more novels set in Gothic worlds, she wanted to create her own.