Sunday, 26 May 2013

Review of Forbidden Love by Natalie Hancock


Publication Date: May 15th 2013
Source: e-copy provided by author for review purposes

"When your love is considered a taboo, would you break it to get what you wanted?


Keta is a vampire hunter with revenge deep in her soul. She is hunting and killing all vampires until she finds the one responsible for her torture and the one who changed her into something more than what she was before.

Elijah was born a vampire but bitten by a werewolf. He is the only known half-breed in existence. The connection between his werewolf master, alpha male and pack leader, Rio, and himself can’t be broken, even by vampire law. So when Rio’s daughter, Katrina, goes missing, Elijah is ordered to search for her.

Keta and Elijah’s paths cross and an explosion of deep lust neither of them understand is awoken, threatening to destroy everything Keta believed in and unmask the identity she tried so hard to keep intact.

Can Keta trust Elijah before their forbidden love kills them both?"

*I Hereby Award This Book 5 Wings!*

This book is short and sweet, so deserves a short and sweet review.

Erotic, passionate, forbidden love. Who doesn't want some of that? I sure do.
This is the first book of a trilogy and I can tell you now, I NEED the next two installments like a flower needs the rain. 
When Natalie asked me if I wanted to review her new novella, I automatically jumped at the chance. Having read one of her books recently and enjoying it immensely, I knew that no matter what, I would love this book and she didn't leave me wanting. Well, she did. Wanting more Elijah. But then who wouldn't?!

Keta is a vampire hunter and has earned herself the nickname "The Silent Killer". She wants to rid the world of the scum that made her what she is today. Elijah was born a vampire but was bitten by a wolf so he is a half-breed, something that has never existed before. When their paths cross, there is an attraction so intense and full of lust. Neither of them understand why they feel the way they do after such a short time, but after the feelings have awoken, they won't go away.
But Keta is keeping a secret and if Elijah uncovers the truth, he may walk away from her without another thought. She doesn't want that to happen so she remains stoic in keeping her secret. 

Commanded by the alpha male of the pack, Elijah must obey Rio's order to find his daughter who went missing 3 months previously. Why did Rio wait 3 months to report his daughter missing and why is it so imperative that Elijah find her now?

Elijah hates Rio with passion but cannot go against the alpha of the pack. Though Elijah is also vampire, when he is given an order by Rio, he must do as he is told or suffer the pain that comes with disobeying a direct order. 

So Elijah and Keta set out to find Katerina. Their journey is not altogether an easy one. Fraught with danger and an undeniable attraction to one another, this makes for a story well worth reading!

I absolutely LOVED this book. If I could award more than 5 wings, I really would! I cannot wait for books 2 & 3 because I have been left swooning for more Elijah. 
The characters are great and they are easy to bond with. I defy anyone not to do the same.

Natalie Hancock is a great author and knows just how to leave a girl satiated yet wanting more at the same time. This story may only be a novella but it packs the punch of a full-length novel. With passion and action to boot, this is one hell of a story.

Thank you Natalie for allowing me to read and review Forbidden Love. What can I say, it was nothing short of A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!

Thank you to all who came to read my review today. If you want to pick up a copy of Forbidden Love, please click one of the following links:





Friday, 24 May 2013

*Cover Reveal* FALLING INTO US by Selene Chardou

Hey Guys and Gals *waves*

You know how I brought you a review of Falling Into Lust with the fabulous Kaz and Syd? Well I am lucky enough to be able to bring to you the Cover Reveal for the next book in the series, Falling Into Us.

It needs no more introduction....

*ta-dah*



Don't you just think it's gorgeous? 

“Kaz asked me a simple question and offered a way out. He said I could stay here and visit him on tour when ever I wanted but I am tired of feeling vacuous and useless so I said yes. I could use my photography skills and I’d been to plenty of concerts but never have I gone on tour with a band. The concerts are amazing but Scarlet Fever and Winter’s Regret are a formidable combination and just as in life as in art, nothing is ever what it appears to be. Even the most perfect paintings have slight imperfections and I have to discover them one by one…about Kaz, my lover and the man I have come to adore…”

Part two of Syd and Kaz’s exploration takes place in dual points of view and covers the North American leg of the Gods of Rock World Tour with Scarlet Fever and Winter’s Regret. 

Kaz thought he knew what he was doing when he decided to enter into a relationship with Sydney but his underestimation of her might cost him everything including the self-control he has held on to so tight for many years. 
Can he mold her into the woman he needs her to be or will she break him in the end?

The One More Night Trilogy is a Contemporary Romance set in the world of rock and roll:
Falling Into Lust
Falling Into Us 
Falling Into Love (Coming June of 2013)

Publisher’s Note: This is a novel length novel. Although this is a three part trilogy, none of these stories end with cliffhangers and each one is a journey into the lives of Sydney and Kaz before and during the world tour. 

Due to mature content, explicit language and adult situations, this novel is recommended for those 18+.

Although this is a New Adult Contemporary Romance, all characters are over the age of twenty-one






Author Bio:-

Selene Chardou is a world traveler and the alter-ego of Elle Chardou.
Ms. Chardou’s writing is all about hot romance and exciting times with the rich and famous set in the New Adult realm.
She is currently working on Falling into Love (One More Night Trilogy).
There will also be a spin-off series titled simply the Scarlet Fever Series which will chronicle the relationships of all four band members in separate novels.
She also has a pop stars series planned titled Young, Rich & Talented, which will also be a trilogy.
Ms. Chardou has lived abroad in Stockholm (Sweden), Manchester (England), Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay Area and Portland. She currently resides in Las Vegas, Nevada.



Contact Links:-

Blog: The Realm of Selene Chardou located http://selenechardou.blogspot.com/
Join Selene. Chardou’s Mailing List for early notification of New Books HERE!
Follow Selene Chardou on Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/ellechardou
If you would like to email Selene Chardou, she can be reached at: selenechardou@gmail.com

Monday, 20 May 2013

Review of FALLING INTO LUST by Selene Chardou



*Content Recommended For Mature Readers*


Publication Date: April 20th 2013
Source: e-copy provided by the author for review

"Sydney is determined to have a twenty-third party to be remembered and when her grandfather decides the celebration should be on his brand new yacht, the Landvik III, this isn't the only surprise in store for the uptown girl who has everything but love...

Kasper "Kaz" Gillian dropped his family a long time ago to form Scarlet Fever, one of the biggest rock and roll banks in the world and definitely in the twenty-first century. 

When Sydney and Kasper meet, there is an instant explosion of emotions. The sexual tension is so thick, it could be cut with a butter knife and before either of them realize it, they have fallen into Lust..."

*I Hereby Award This Book 5 Wings!*

WARNING: Don't read this book unless you want to fall hard in lust with a rock god!

When I talked to Selene Chardou about reviewing her book, Falling Into Lust, I wasn't prepared to fall for Kaz just as much as I did. I love rockers, especially of the tattooed variety. If there's anything as hot as a tattooed guy, I sure ain't seen it! This book is the first in the One More Night novella series and let me say if this is how hot the series begins, I can't even begin to imagine how hot and explosive the ending will be. 
I read this in just one sitting and I am absolutely dying for Falling Into Us, which comes next. 
With Selene's brilliant writing and sex scenes that are just smokin' - well, we have a winning combination.
I thought at one point I might spontaneously combust -well, not so 'spontaneously' ;)

Syd wants her twenty-third birthday party to be one to remember and ever one to give in to her wants and needs, Syd's Grandfather hires rock band Scarlet Fever to play a private gig for her and some friends and family aboard his yacht. 
The night of the party arrives and Syd is dressed to kill. she's a girl with a mission. It's been an unfulfilled wish to bed a rocker and she imagines how it would feel were she to bed the notorious womaniser, Kasper 'Kaz' Gillian, lead singer of Scarlet Fever. The band are all known for their womanising ways, but it's Kaz that Syd has her sights on. Once Syd makes up her mind to do something, nothing can stop her, come Hell or high water. 

When Syd and Kaz meet, there is an inexplicable electricity in the air. There's sexual tension aplenty, but is it just lusting after each other or could there actually be a deeper connection on a more emotional level? Well I'm hoping we discover more about them in the upcoming books because even though we're just at the beginning of their journey, it's easy to see that there are more layers to be unravelled. 

I was instantly hooked by the compelling way that Selene Chardou writes. Then there's the undeniable pull of the sexual chemistry between Syd and Kaz. I found myself wanting, needing to read faster. I also found myself wishing Selene could write faster because I need Falling Into Us now.

This installment had a great flow to it, nothing was forced. It felt like a full-length novel with the amount of story she managed to tell in such a short space of time. I found that I liked all of the characters, there wasn't one bad one in the bunch. But I guess only time will tell if they stay that way or if there are actually skeletons hiding in some closets. I really like a book where I can invest in the characters and this seems like it's going to be an emotional series for me. 

If you're looking for a steamy, un-put-down-able book - then this is just the right one for you. It's a really great mixture of fantastic writing, an eclectic cast of characters and just the right amount of spice.

Thank you Selene for the review copy of this awesome book. Roll on release date for Falling Into Us because I cannot wait for more sparks between Syd and the sex-on-legs that is Kaz Gillian!

Thank you all who came to read my review. Hope to see you all for the unveiling of the cover on Friday May 24th at 8am GMT.









Review of STAGES OF GRACE by Carey Heywood


Author: Carey Heywood
Publication Date: April 23rd 2013
Source: e-copy received from author for review purposes


"Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, Acceptance...

When facing death a mourning period is to be expected. But what if it's not a person but a relationship that dies? Grace and her boyfriend Jon have been together for three years. They live together and have shared many beautiful memories. Those memories are what keep Grace from admitting Jon has changed and is no longer the man she fell in love with.

Afraid of being alone and holding on to something that no longer exists Grace is a shadow of her former self. Her daily objective is to hide her pain from the world. Then, an unexpected letter sets off a whirlwind of potential life changes. In life sometimes the hardest thing to do is let go"



*I Hereby Award This Book 5 Wings!*



When Carey Heywood said she was looking for reviewers, I jumped at the chance. I have never read anything by her before but she came highly recommended by a friend. So it was a chance for me to meet a new author and be introduced to her world. I can tell you now, I am so very happy that I did. If I hadn't, I wouldn't have known what a fabulous author she was and what she would bring to my life in the form of Stages of Grace. 

This book made such an impact on me for a couple of reasons, one because it's written so beautifully but it also resonates with me on a deeper level because I suffered similarly to Grace. So much so it could have been called "Stages of Keren" instead. 

Denial... Anger... Bargaining... Depression... and finally Acceptance.
These stages of grief are more prominently associated with death. But what happens when it's the death of a relationship not an actual person?

At first, Grace and Jon were blissfully happy. She'd been out on a blind date with someone and had seen Jon across the bowling alley - he was gorgeous, kind, funny... all the things you'd want in a boyfriend. They were always stealing kisses and sharing happy moments. That was until they'd been together for 3 years and Jon wasn't the easygoing man she had come to know and love. He became distant and cold, snapping at her for the slightest thing. 
They used to have a morning routine of sharing a coffee and then seeing each other off to work, then Jon lost his job. For a short time, he kept up with the routine, seeing Grace off to her job as a doctor's receptionist but then one day he just stopped. 
Every little thing Grace did seemed to annoy him. She was permanently walking on eggshells. She got to the point where she would put her clothes for the following morning in the bathroom the night before because getting dressed in their bedroom had Jon shouting at her for making too much noise. 
This resonated within me because I once had a partner who was much the same, only he hit me too. Fortunately for Grace, Jon never physically hurt her, but the mental abuse was just as bad as physical abuse. 

Grace would go to work, and that would be the only reprieve she got because she worked with her friend Nikita. But when she got home on a night, she never knew what she'd be walking into. 

There were no more tender moments or romantic gestures. Jon would wait until Grace went to bed and then he'd have the cheek to take her car out (because he now couldn't afford the upkeep of his own car) and he'd stay out until all hours doing lord only knows what. If Grace had asked him what he was up to, he would have gone ballistic. So she never asked. 

Grace was an orphan, her parents having died recently. Jon had seen her through those times with a tissue for her tears and a shoulder to cry on. So what had happened to the old Jon? Where had the sensitive guy she'd fallen in love with disappeared to? What could she do to bring him back? Was it her fault?

One day, an unexpected letter has Grace shocked. She has a grandmother who is alive and living in Florida. Why hadn't her mother told her this when she was alive? She had always believed her mother when she said that her grandmother was dead. But here, now, she was reading a letter that confirmed this to be a lie.

Upon visiting her grandmother Kate in Florida, Grace has time to reflect on what her life is like. She sees it through fresh eyes. Of course, it helps that her grandmother's next door neighbour Ryan is hot. Not that I condone cheating to any degree, but with what she had suffered, I was silently encouraging her to at least kiss Ryan. 

Kate asking her to stay with her in Florida makes Grace reassess her life. Is she happy? Does she love Jon anymore?  Is there anything keeping her in Ohio? She could get a job in Florida. She could live with Kate. She could do anything with her life. But could she leave Jon or would she stay and try to make the relationship work?

Well these are questions you must endeavour to find out the answers to for yourself. 

This book is an emotionally fraught journey for sure. The first stage, Denial, I was right there with her. I kept leaving the partner that beat me but I kept returning. He had a way of emotionally blackmailing me into staying, promising he'd never hit me again. I kept believing he could change. Lesson to be learned from that? A leopard never changes it's spots.
The next stage, Anger. I could feel this emotion probably just as strongly as Grace. How could Jon turn from someone so loving to someone who shouted and screamed at her for the slightest of things? She felt the anger rising inside her because all the times she thought she was in the wrong, she wasn't. There was nothing wrong with the way Grace acted. It was Jon who was in the wrong and how dare he assume to take it out on her. 
Then there was Bargaining. Well, Carey Heywood knows how to play with my emotions and she had me here too. 
I was all too quickly thrown into Depression and so I totally felt Grace's plight. I was hurt that he mentally and physically bullied me into staying by his side. Calling me whenever he was on a break at work. Not letting me have a job because he was jealous that I might find someone else. Well in the end, I did find a job and I did find someone else. Someone like Ryan. Someone who treated me as an equal. As a person to loved, desired, cherished. not beaten and destroyed. It was in this stage that I must admit, I cheated. Looking back on it, it wasn't the right thing to do... BUT... he had beaten all the love out of me and I craved someone to put the pieces of me back together. 
Lastly, we have Acceptance. For Grace, it was acceptance that it was time to make a change in her life. She had to stand up and be counted as an equal. She had to accept that it wasn't her fault that Jon had taken his problems out on her. He tried making her think that it was her fault for rubbing it in that she had a job and he only got "an allowance" like a child. Well she finally succeeded in standing up and making herself heard. 
Acceptance for me was realising that it was not okay for [bleep] to beat me or mentally abuse me. I finally took that step to leave him, permanently! 

So I felt Grace's every moment, cowering in case anything she did set Jon off. But I also felt every moment when her smile started to shine through. The moments she felt happiness being with her grandmother or being around Ryan. 

Even if you've never been through a similar situation, I truly believe that you will have a hard job keeping yourself from empathising with Grace. She is such a beautiful character, both inside and out. She craves the love she used to have, but with the finality of the death of her relationship, a butterfly emerges from the cocoon. A stronger woman who can finally get what she wants from her life.

The writing style of Carey Heywood sucked me in. She pulled at my heartstrings at every turn. A tumultuous journey from beginning to end, Stages of Grace shoots right toward the top of my Best Books of 2013 list. 
I am now looking to get all of the books Carey has written and I believe she is writing a sequel to SoG, I truly hope she does. 
There aren't enough words to describe this story without totally ruining your own first-hand experience of it. All I can tell you is that you won't be sorry you bought this book and spent a wonderful few hours lost within the pages. I smiled when Grace smiled, a laughed when she laughed, and I even cried a couple of times. People who know me know that I can't resist a book that makes me feel this much emotion.

If my review gets even just one person to read this book, then I will have done my job.

If you are in a similar situation to Grace, it may even help you take stock of your own life and get out before getting too hurt.

Thank you Carey for providing the e-copy of SoG for review. Thank you for hitting every emotion on the head. But thank you most of all for creating Ryan for me to swoon over.
Ryan... how I long for a second book... maybe from his POV?... A girl can dream!

Thank you everyone who came to read my review today. I hope I have convinced some of you to purchase this book. Hope to see you all again here soon!

To purchase your copy of SoG, here are some links:






Wednesday, 15 May 2013

*Cover Reveal* FIRST KISS by Ann Marie Frohoff





































Title: First Kiss (Heavy Influence Trilogy, #1)
Author: Ann Marie Frohoff
Release Date: June 11, 2013
Pages: 483
Find it: Amazon & Goodreads
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary




It was all about the band, until the girl next door.


Her innocence is tempting.

A sexually charged coming of age story set in the throes of stardom.



About an up and coming teenage rocker on the verge of stardom, when the girl next door becomes something more; they're forced to face the harsh realities on his road to fame and the expectations of their friends and family.
 



Sacrifices are made as everything changes as they know it.


 

Forbidden Love by Natalie Hancock - Release Day Promo!



Available from Extasy Books: http://www.extasybooks.com/forbidden-love/
Keta is a vampire hunter with revenge deep in her soul. She is hunting and killing all vampires until she finds the one responsible for her torture and the one who changed her into something more than what she was before.
Elijah was born a vampire but bitten by a werewolf. He is the only known half-breed in existence. The connection between his werewolf master, alpha male and pack leader, Rio, and himself can’t be broken, even by vampire law. So when Rio’s daughter, Katrina, goes missing, Elijah is ordered to search for her.
Keta and Elijah’s paths cross and an explosion of deep lust neither of them understand is awoken, threatening to destroy everything Keta believed in and unmask the identity she tried so hard to keep intact.
Can Keta trust Elijah before their forbidden love kills them both?

Sunday, 12 May 2013

Review of PODs by Michelle Pickett and Giveaway of a Signed ARC + SWAG


**GIVEAWAY NOW OPEN**
*Open Internationally*


Title: PODs
Publication Date: June 4th 2013
Source: ARC received from author for review


"Seventeen-year-old Eva is a chosen one. Chosen to live, while others meet a swift and painful death from an incurable virus so lethal, a person is dead within days of symptoms emerging. In the POD system, a series of underground habitats built by the government, she waits with the other chosen for the deadly virus to claim those above. Separated from family and friends, it's in the PODs she meets David. And while true love might not conquer all, it's a balm for the broken soul. 

After a year, scientists believe the population has died, and without living hosts, so has the virus. That's the theory, anyway. But when the PODs are opened, survivors find the surface holds a vicious secret. The virus mutated, infecting those left top-side and creating... monsters. 

Eva and David hide from the infected in the abandoned PODs. Together they try to build a life--a new beginning. But the infected follow and are relentless in their attacks. Leaving Eva and David to fight for survival, and pray for a cure."


*I Hereby Award This Book 5 Wings!*

I have been dying for an ARC of PODs since I first discovered it's existence months ago on Spencer Hill Press' website. You wouldn't believe the volume at which I squealed when the mail man knocked on my door and handed me a parcel directly from Michelle Pickett. I tore the parcel open and discovered that not only was there one ARC but actually there were two signed copies. One for me and one to give away. Plus, there was a little swag bag set up for me and one for give away. The final amazing item was a tote bag with a picture of the PODs and Milayna covers on. I was speechless and so very happy.

I had just finished with a book and so I was ready to read PODs the day it arrived. I dived in straight away and boy oh boy was I in for one hell of a ride. I didn't realise at the start that I should have buckled up my seatbelt and braced for the energetic, lightning paced story that would ensue. 

Evangelina Evans is a normal 17 year old girl with a normal life, until the day an incurable virus comes to town. If contracted, this virus will mean a painful death within just days of the symptoms emerging.
The government decide that they need to move people to the PODs that they built underground in case of any such pandemic. And that's exactly what this is. The virus will wipe out anyone living above ground when it hits. 
The government say that there is room for only 70,000 people in the PODs and that 20,000 of those spaces are reserved for members of the government themselves. So that means that out of the entire population, only 50,000 people will be saved. How do they decide who should be saved and who shouldn't? Well that comes in the form of a Social Security Number Raffle. Basically, everyone's social security number is entered into the raffle and those that get drawn out will have a space in the PODs. Anyone else will be left to fend for themselves topside until the virus inevitably wipes them out. 

Eva and her family desperately wait for the phone call to say that they have been selected. Time goes by and the phone call doesn't come. 
Eva's cell phone rings and she is told that her number has been drawn. She must pack no more than two suitcases of things that she will need. She must say goodbye to her parents as their numbers weren't drawn.
Eva is scared as Hell and doesn't want to leave without her parents. She keeps hoping that their numbers will be drawn. She keeps that hope up right up until the day that she is driven to the checkpoint and she must say a final goodbye.

Once past the checkpoint, Eva must go through Quarantine. They put her in a glass room and they draw her blood every day to make sure she is showing no signs of having the virus. 
She sits in her glass box that feels like a prison cell, she has books that she's read cover to cover. There's a television but all it shows is news reports of what's happening topside and Eva doesn't want to know what will happen to those that have been left behind. She doesn't want to accept the fate that her parents have been dealt. Her room is surrounded by others that contain people the same as her. Everyone must go through this quarantine before being allowed into the PODs. The government need to know that no-one will have the virus and spread it once underground with the others. 

Once quarantine is over, people are moved into sub-PODs that branch off from the main POD. There are ten people to one sub-POD; five of which are male and five female.

Eva moves in with five boys and three other girls, one of whom is pregnant.

Adjusting to life underground in a small sub-POD is difficult. Not everyone is pleasant to live with. There's one young girl in the group and Eva thinks she can't be younger than 12, there's one girl who doesn't speak English very well and then there's the boys. David, George, Josh, Seth and Aiden. David is good looking, sweet, charming and funny. George is nice and seems more welcoming than some. Josh is an A-hole. There's no other word for it. He is always down on everybody else. He makes fun of everyone, he's arrogant and rude. No-one in the POD likes him, but they know they have to live with him for a year.

Eva has a theory about who got selected and who got left topside. She believes that it's only people between the ages of about 12 and 25 and they are all smart, with a four-point-oh grade average.  
The residents of each sub-POD are sent textbooks through a chute and are told they need to complete coursework and modules online via the intranet. They are also to partake in blood tests to make sure they are still fit and healthy.

A year is how long the government believe it will be before the virus has worked it's way through topside and then they say it will be gone and people can move back up there.

Eva doesn't want a romance within the POD but every time David passes her by, he sends shivers down her spine. His touch elicits butterflies in her stomach. She can't help but notice how handsome he is. How kind, charming, funny, caring he is. It seems they both feel the same way but they avoid doing anything about it. If they had a relationship and it turned sour, they'd still have to live together in the confines of the POD until the year is over.

There's nothing that can be done to stop the inevitable though. David and Eva embark on a relationship. They are such a good match for each other. Everyone can see how much they obviously care for each other after months underground together. But Eva wonders whether the relationship will still thrive once they are allowed back topside. Is it just the confines of the POD that make them feel this drawn to each other?
There's no mistaking the chemistry they have together though.

Tiffany's baby is born in the POD. The group help her when she goes into labour and they can't make contact with the main POD. Eva remains collected and talks everyone through their roles and the baby is born safely. 

Once the year is up, once the government believe the virus has died out topside, the people underground are allowed to move to camps that have been set up for them up there. 

Before they are set up in homes and are been assigned jobs in the sector that the government chose for them, Eva realises that her and David won't be put together. The numbers they have been assigned don't match. To say she is upset is the understatement of the century. Yet she must do as she has been told. She has been given a house of her own and she must attend the job she has been assigned as a teacher. Gone are the days when she saw David 24/7, when she could see his sweet smile, smell the unique smell of his skin, when she could kiss him and hold him, be held by him at night and fall asleep on the settee in the POD.

What does the future hold for Eva? For David? For any of the friends she made down in the POD? Is the virus really gone? Will a mutated version of the virus ravage the small camps/compounds that have been set up for the residents protection? 

These are questions you will only get answers to by reading the book for yourself.

This book was an energetic, tumultuous roller coaster ride that had me on the edge of my seat and biting my nails constantly. I never knew what was coming. There were the bitter-sweet moments that I lived through when Eva and David were alone together. Then there were the moments that had me laughing and sometimes wanting to punch the snot out of someone (Josh). There were also times when I got so emotional. I felt all the feelings Eva was feeling. I fought battles with my tear ducts, they wanted to overflow and I didn't want to let them. But there were a few moments when it felt like a tap had been turned on and no-one could stop the warm salty tears that raced their way down my cheeks.,

You know when Goodreads says "Meet Your Next Favourite Book"? Well this is it! This is my favourite book of 2013. I can only compare the feelings I have for PODs by looking back at my favourite book of 2012, Divergent by Veronica Roth. Anyone that knows me, knows how much love I have for that book (and how many tattoos I have related to that book and the sequel, Insurgent).
I have booked to have a PODs tattoo of the symbol that we see at the beginning of the book and on the Chapter pages.

In my honest opinion, Michelle Pickett is best-selling author material. She has a talent beyond anything I had imagined upon starting this book. She writes with such emotion, such passion and tenacity. It is obvious that she poured her heart and soul into this book and you can tell that she would have been sat at her computer probably crying her eyes out at some of what she was writing. To have produced a book as good as PODs, this author must be overflowing with talent. It doesn't feel like a debut book, her writing style speaks of someone who has been writing and publishing books for years. 

I live for books that keep me on my toes and keep me guessing all the way through. I like it when I have no idea how it will turn out. This is one of those books! I honestly had no idea what would come next. There is so much I could say about both this book and this author, but if I did, you'd get mad at me for spoiling some of the things that should be discovered first-hand when you pick up the book yourself.

Trust me when I say, you really need to be purchasing this book from anywhere it's available on June 4th 2013. That's not far away, perhaps you should go and pre-order it now. If my review hasn't incensed you to go and pick up a copy, then I haven't really done my job properly.

I'd like to thank Michelle for providing this copy for review and also for being kind enough to donate an ARC and SWAG to give away!

If you love books that keep you on your toes, sweep you up in a whirlwind of emotions, and make you wish that the book would never end, then I am now giving you a chance to win a SIGNED ARC copy as well as SWAG! All you have to do is follow the instructions in the Rafflecopter form below and read my Terms and Conditions.


(Click photos to enlarge)




Terms And Conditions:
  • Gothic Angel Book Reviews will not be held responsible for loss or damage in the post.
  • International Delivery takes longer so please allow time for delivery.
  • The winner will be contacted via email.
  •  If no response is recorded within one week, the draw will be re-held and the prizes will go to someone else.
And the winner is... NATALIE HANCOCK!



Thank you all who came by today, I hope to see you here again soon!


Welcome To My Stop On The Blog Tour For STARS IN HER EYES by Clare C. Marshall


Publication Date: May 13th 2013
Source: eARC provided by author in exchange for honest review

"Burn hot and cold.

Read minds.

Disappear at will.

Dream your own death.

Welcome to Sparkstone University, where some students are more gifted than others.

When Ingrid learns she’s been accepted at the hyper-secretive Sparkstone University, she is sceptical. It’s an honour to attend, apparently, and yet barely anyone has ever heard of the place.

And everyone seems a little too happy that she’s there: especially when she meets Sunni and her group of friends. They seem to already know Ingrid. As if she was expected. Expected to save Earth from an imminent alien invasion. Like she has superpowers or something.

As if magic and mutations exist. As if aliens are really planning to attack.

That just sounds ridiculous. There’s no such thing.

…right?

Wrong!"


* I Hereby Award This Book 5 Wings!*


When I was approached by Clare to review this book and be on the blog tour, I jumped at the chance to read something different. I haven't read a YA book about aliens (no, I haven't read the Lux series, yet). I also jumped at the chance because Clare Marshall is an author I adore. Her novel Within was one of my favourite books of 2012. 

STARS IN HER EYES is a story of aliens, intrigue, exploration, exposure and most of all, it's a fun, fast-paced, page turning book where you are desperate to find out what is going to happen next. It had me biting at my nails and dying to find out what the outcome was for the students of Sparkstone as well as for Ingrid and her new friends.

Ingrid Stanley is about to start life at University. She's been accepted to the super-elite, super-secretive campus of Sparkstone University. The prestigious award might sit better with her if she ever remembered applying to go there. 
Apparently, the people in charge of Sparkstone send out scouts to schools to select the smartest people, at the top of their field. They send out an acceptance letter and then the students begin their semester.
But because Ingrid and her parents had no idea when the semester began, she's a month late starting.

After packing her wordly belongings into a few meagre cases, Ingrid and her parents set out in the car on the long journey from Calgary to Sparkstone.

Upon their arrival, Ingrid meets Ms Agailya. she's responsible for the students who attend Sparkstone and she is keen to show Ingrid to her temporary accommodation, where she will remain until her personalised room is ready.

Everything at Sparkstone is tailored to the students, even the locks on the doors, as Ingrid finds out when she takes a hold of the door handle and it pricks her finger then a computerised voice tells her "DNA scan confirmed."

Once inside, Ingrid meets a student by the name of Sunni. Sunni tells her not to eat the cafeteria food if she can help it. She's a bit vague, but seems friendly enough.

Ingrid is shown to a temporary room that is twice the size of her room back home. She can't believe that students here live in such opulence. Her parents help her carry her bags inside and then it's time for Ingrid to say goodbye as she has her orientation to go to. 
As she is preparing to say goodbye to her parents and attend the class, she meets a boy called Ethan. He's got dark hair and beautiful eyes. Ms Agailya asks him to show Ingrid to her orientation so that she isn't late.
Sparkstone pride themselves on their students being prompt to their classes, although they don't have your typical University lectures. Rather, they have a mixture of students from a variety of fields in each classroom doing projects and discussing their relevant topics. 

Seems everything at Sparkstone is a little different from the "norm" - and it seems like they pride themselves on that difference. 

Before attending Sparkstone, Ingrid studied music. She became the top of her field by excelling at playing various instruments, including the harp. She has many awards and various honours for her excellence. But once she arrives, she becomes unsure whether she will continue to study music. 

Sunni introduces Ingrid to her friends, Misty, Jia and Wil. They all seem nice enough except for Misty's brusque manner. 

Ingrid first discovers something odd about Sparkstone when she is on a tour of the campus with her new found friends. They're about to head into the greenhouse when Ingrid notices a workman in overalls working on a black box behind the greenhouse - only the man has a tentacle instead of a hand and Ingrid doesn't have time to question it before he's striding toward her and Sunni throws her to the floor for her own safety. 

So Sparkstone is an odd place, a place where Ingrid thinks that either she's seeing things, or there's more to this University than meets the eye.

What ensues is a story about aliens and how they infiltrate the University, how they select their students carefully thanks to a gene they all contain. It's a bumpy ride for Ingrid and her friends. Her friends know more than they are letting on about the aliens. Misty doesn't like or trust Ingrid, yet Jia and Wil take her under their wing.
Ingrid's saftey is in question, as is that of the whole University and town of Sparkstone. Bombs have been planted by the hafelglob and it's up to the group to find out how to stop the attack and save the students and the town beyond the wall.
Can they save Sparkstone? Can they figure everything out in time to save Sunni? These are things you'll find out when you read it for yourself.

I really enjoyed this book. It was lightning-paced and alarmingly good. It had me on the edge of my seat and chewing my nails. As I went on, I was turning the pages faster and faster, I needed to know what happened next and couldn't put it down until I was satisfied with the answers to my questions. Not all is what it seems and it is a very intriguing book.

I think Clare Marshall is a great author. She keeps you on your toes, keeps the suspense so thick in the air that you could cut it with a knife. There are laughs, there are tantrums. There's blasts of fire, and blasts of ice too. There's a race against time to find what these aliens are doing to the campus and how they can save it all as well as themselves. You won't be sorry that you chose to pick up a copy of Stars In Her Eyes, unless of course 5 star worthy books aren't your thing!

Thank you Clare for the advanced copy. I loved every minute of it. I stayed up late just to finish it. 

Thank you for coming by for my stop on the blog tour. Hope to see you all again soon!




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