Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Starcrossed Giveaway Winner!

Thank you all for entering the Starcrossed giveaway! I wish I could give each of you a copy, but alas, I cannot. =( Congratulations to MrsBoswellsBooks, the lucky winner via random number generator. I will be emailing you shortly to get your mailing address. Thank you all for your responses and participation! There are some great new books out this year! =)


Friday, May 27, 2011

Giveaway: Starcrossed, by Josephine Angelini

Hello dear readers. I know that I am still new to the wonderful world of blogging and am still getting established, but I really wanted to have a giveaway to celebrate the US release of Starcrossed on May 31st! I am super excited about this debut novel from Josephine Angelini! I read the first few chapters that were available for free and I have been thinking about it nonstop. The world that is created is surreal. The characters and setting offer a modern look at mythology and I believe that Ms. Angelini does a spectacular job bringing life to these characters. In just the first pages I felt like I knew the characters and was there watching from the sidelines. I applaud her for such a spectacular debut and can't wait to see what else awaits me in those pages. Dreamless, the sequel, will be released in 2012.

So now that I have gushed over Starcrossed even though I have not read all of it yet, on to the giveaway. I will be giving away a copy of Starcrossed to one lucky reader. All you have to do is comment on this blog post. Tell me what you think of Starcrossed and what debut you are looking most forward to this year. If you would rather tell me of a release that is not a debut, that is fine as well. You also need to tweet about this giveaway. Make sure you @ reply me (@raychellej). Good luck and don't forget to leave your email so I can contact you if you win. The winner will also be announced here on Tuesday, the official release day of Starcrossed.

Must be over 13.
If under 18, you need your parents permission to enter, as you will have to provide your address so that I can mail the book to you.
US addresses only please.
(UPDATE: I have gotten a few questions about international entries. I was not originally going to ship international, but I have found that The Book Depository will ship for free so I am opening this giveaway to international entries as well.)

One entry per person
Giveaway ends Monday, May 30

You do not have to be a follower, but I would appreciate it. =)
Please do not leave your address in the comment box. If you win, I will contact you.


Monday, May 23, 2011

Giveaway hosted by Lauren DeStefano

Wither is the first book in the Chemical Gardens Trilogy. I have not read this book yet, but I have read many great reviews. I plan to buy this book as soon as I am able. Wither has a unique plot and the writing by Ms. DeStefano seems to be eloquent from reading the excerpt provided on her website. She is hosting a giveaway on her blog in celebration of reaching 3,000 followers on twitter. The prize is none other than a personalized ARC of Wither and an ARC of Fever when it is printed and available. To participate, visit her blog, read the rules, and follow the instructions. Her blog can be found here.

Wither (as written on her website)

By age sixteen, Rhine Ellery has four years left to live. She can thank modern science for this genetic time bomb. A botched effort to create a perfect race has left all males with a lifespan of 25 years, and females with a lifespan of 20 years. Geneticists are seeking a miracle antidote to restore the human race, desperate orphans crowd the population, crime and poverty have skyrocketed, and young girls are being kidnapped and sold as polygamous brides to bear more children.

When Rhine is kidnapped and sold as a bride, she vows to do all she can to escape. Her husband, Linden, is hopelessly in love with her, and Rhine can’t bring herself to hate him as much as she’d like to. He opens her to a magical world of wealth and illusion she never thought existed, and it almost makes it possible to ignore the clock ticking away her short life. But Rhine quickly learns that not everything in her new husband’s strange world is what it seems. Her father-in-law, an eccentric doctor bent on finding the antidote, is hoarding corpses in the basement. Her fellow sister wives are to be trusted one day and feared the next, and Rhine is desperate to communicate to her twin brother that she is safe and alive. Will Rhine be able to escape–before her time runs out?

Fever (as written on her website)

A breeze rolls up from the water, and I realize at once how numb the cold air and wet clothes have made me. We should find someplace to stay, but where? I sit up and take in our surroundings. There’s sand and rocks for several more yards, but beyond that I can see the shadows of buildings. A lone freight truck lumbers down  a faraway road, and I think soon it’ll be dark enough for Gatherer vans to start patrolling the area with their lights off. This would be the perfect place for them to hunt; there don’t appear to be any streetlights, and the alleyways between those buildings could be full of scarlet district girls.

Gabriel, of course, is more concerned about the blood. He’s trying to wrap my palm with a piece of seaweed, and the salt is burning the wound. I just need a minute to take this all in, and then I’ll worry about the cut. This time yesterday, I was a House Governor’s bride. I had sister wives. At the end of my life, my body would end up with the wives who died before me, on a rolling cart in my father-in-law’s basement, for him to do only he knows what.

But now there’s the smell of salt, sound of the ocean. There’s a hermit crab making its way up a sand dune. And something else, too. My brother, Rowan, is somewhere out here. And there’s nothing stopping me from getting home to him.

On Sale February 2012

Both books sound fantastic and I can't wait to read them!


Review: Shadow Days (A Nightshade novella), By Andrea Cremer

Shadow Days is a great prequel to Nightshade. This novella is 84 pages and contains a lot of information regarding Shay and his past. Ms. Cremer continues to amaze me with her imagery and character building. This novella allows readers to become more familiar with Shay and who he is/was before attending the Mountain School. Nightshade begins right where Shadow Days ends so readers are not going to miss anything. If you haven't read Nightshade yet, then I suggest starting with this fantastic prequel. If you have read Nightshade but missed out on this, then I recommend you read it anyway. It is a great story and it is from Shay's POV so you gain more of an understanding about him and his relationship with his Uncle Bosque. It is not repetitive to anything in Nightshade, although some situaions are briefly mentioned in the novel to provide a background.

Please visit this site to read Shadow Days and for information regarding the Nightshade series and Andrea Cremer. There are also several videos featuring Shay as well as the nightshade trailer.

Feel free to leave comments, questions, suggestions, and recommendations in the comment section. =)


Friday, May 20, 2011

Cover Reveal: The Onyx Talisman By Brenda Pandos

The Onyx Talisman, third and final book in the Talisman trilogy.
Publisher: Obsidian Mountain Publishing
Tentative Release Date: 11/16/2011
Follow Brenda on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Brenda-Pandos-Author/147707291958883
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/10233236-the-onyx-talisman
Twitter: @brendapandos
Blog: brendapandos.blogspot.com 

This cover is really unique. I love the color and the design. It offers a fresh look and it sets this book (and the series) apart from others. The scene depicted here really draws my attention and makes me curious about the plot and the characters. I have not had a chance to read the first two books, The Emerald Talisman and The Sapphire Talisman, but I can't wait to start! I am really excited to read this series and to see what kind of world Ms. Pandos has created (and the covers are just fabulous)! I hope you all enjoy this cover reveal.  Now go out and get yourself a copy of this book. Even if you don't read it, you can just stare at the cover. You should probably still read it though because you never know what you may find. New treasures lurk in every corner. A special thanks to Brenda Pandos for allowing me to participate in her cover reveal! =)


All was perfect in Julia’s life until Nicholas had his vampire blood-lust activated by his mother Alora, her immortal enemy, turning him evil and bent on revenge. Heartbroken and out of choices, Phil and Julia ran away in the middle of the night, with Scarlett on foot, to Orange County to warn and plead Nicholas’ Godfather for help. Once arriving at Harry’s though, the local coven accosted them and they narrowly escaped.

After they returned home, there was a huge showdown between Phil, Nicholas, Scarlett, Alora, Katie and Julia. Alora almost got what she wanted—Julia’s vampire warding talisman—but Preston, Nicholas’ father, and Harry came to the rescue. They escorted Nicholas and Alora back to Beverly Hills, pledging to return Nicholas free from his blood-lust. But all Julia’s received in the past four months is a letter stating Nicholas missed her along with some song lyrics and promise of a quick return. That was a month ago.

Now Julia awaits Nicholas’ return with the Fab Five Coven: Phil and Katie—the sober vampires, Scarlett—the half-vamp/shape-shifter, and Tyler and Julia—the inducted humans. She’s stuck in Scotts Valley with Phil as her self-appointed chaperon and no way to return to Los Angeles to check on Nicholas. Only Scarlett and Julia know her fate ultimately involves the demise of all vampires, possibly including the ones she loves. When the time comes, will she even have a choice?

Find out in the final installment of the bestselling Talisman Series November 16, 2011!
Want to know more? Check out Brenda’s blog at: http://brendapandos.blogspot.com

So what do you think of the cover? Leave a comment and let me know. Then, be sure to head over to Brenda's page or her Twitter to let her know what you think. =)

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Review of Nightshade By Andrea Cremer

http://www.daemonsbooks.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/01/Nightshade-Andrea-Cremer-Book-Cover.jpg Calla Tor has always known her destiny: After graduating from the Mountain School, she'll be the mate of sexy alpha wolf Ren Laroche and fight with him, side by side, ruling their pack and guarding sacred sites for the Keepers. But when she violates her masters' laws by saving a beautiful human boy out for a hike, Calla begins to question her fate, her existence, and the very essence of the world she has known. By following her heart, she might lose everything--including her own life. Is forbidden love worth the ultimate sacrifice? From Goodreads Nightshade (Nightshade #1)

Andrea Cremer's Nightshade is by far one of my favorite books! It has so many elements that capture my interest. The characters are so real and the story is relatable. Readers will feel like they are a part of this world and are sure to find themselves sharing emotions with the characters. Calla Tor, the Nightshade Alpha, is such a strong character. She has always known that she will mate with Renier Laroche, and she has never questioned her destiny until a chance encounter that leaves her world changed forever. Renier Laroche, the Bane Alpha, is the perfect mate for Calla. He is a natural leader and commands the attention of everyone, including the human girls. Ren is naturally possessive of Calla, knowing that they are to be united soon. Shay is...well, what can I say about Shay? He is everything that readers hope for in a love interest. There are no words to adequately describe him, but I shall try. Shay is the light in Calla's dark. He is not afraid of Calla and does not back down from a challenge. He is funny, passionate, strong, and curious. Throughout the story, one learns a lot about Shay and I started to root for him as the story progressed. It is hard to choose between the two love interests because their personalities are practically opposites and Calla finds herself attracted to each in different ways. The young Banes and Nightshades are equally impressive. Each is unique and strong and brings another element into the story. 

Andrea Cremer's writing style is amazing. Each word is crucial in creating her world and she does so with such grace. This writing and the story has such a natural flow that I was immediately caught up in it. The plot something very different from other books (at least those that I have read and searched). As the story progresses and one learns more about the reality of the Keepers, the Guardians, and the Searchers, he or she will find that some secrets are more dangerous than others. The cliffhanger definitely left me craving more. It was kind of as if my world just stopped at that moment and couldn't pick up again until I had Wolfsbane. That is how great this story is. If you were debating on purchasing this book, I recommend that you do so. And fast! Wolfsbane will be released in July '11, so there is still sometime to fall in love with this book and Andrea's writing, as I have, before the second book is out. 

For an excerpt from Nightshade, visit this website (http://www.nightshadebook.com/) and it is also available on Goodreads. To purchase Nightshade please visit Barnes and Noble or Amazon. 

Please feel free to leave a comment and tell me if you would like to read this book, what you think about my review, or what you think about Nightshade if you have already read it. Also visit Andrea Cremer's blog to tell her how fantastic she is! She can be found here.

UPDATE: Keep an eye out for my review of Wolfsbane and your chance to win a finished copy!