Saturday, 18 May 2019

BLOG TOUR & REVIEW - WE ARE NOT OKAY BY NATÁLIA GOMES

Title: We Are Not Ok
Author: Natália Gomes
Genre: General (Adult) Fiction, YA, Teens
Publisher: HQ Young Adult, HQ
Release Date: 2nd May 2019

BLURB from Goodreads
If only they could have spoken out.

Lucy thinks she’s better than the other girls.
Maybe if she’s pointing fingers at everyone else, no one will see the secret she’s hiding.

Ulana comes from a conservative Muslim family where reputation is everything. One rumour -
true or false – can destroy futures.

Trina likes to party. She’s kissed a lot of boys. She’s even shown her red bra to one. But she didn’t consent to that
night at Lucy’s party. So why doesn’t anyone believe
her?

Sophia loved her boyfriend. She did anything for him, even send him photos of herself. So why is she the one being pointed at in the hallways, laughed at, spat at when it was him who betrayed her trust?


PURCHASE LINKS

REVIEW

I never used to read much from the contemporary genre whether it be YA or Adult but for some reason this book caught my eye, I read the blurb and felt I really wanted to read it.



I find the cover rather simplistic yet striking. I love the colours on the cover and the large X makes you want to know what is being said is "no or banned". So I guess it tugs on your curiosity/nosey gene lol. At the very beginning of the book is a playlist of songs, I’ll be totally honest I haven’t heard of most of the artists, so can’t say I know any of the songs, perhaps they will be more relevant to the YA market this book is aimed at. I think the byline hints at whats to come in the book very well, "Four Girls, Four Voices, All Unheard". It is the perfect byline! I love a great byline.


The book is focused on four girls, Sophia Greer, Lucy McNeil, Ulana Alami and Trina Davis all seemingly similar and attending the same school. Yet looking at each different girl you learn all the individual secrets they have to keep....

It is a difficult book to describe and talk about without revealing too much of the plot, but I will try my best and share a little bit about each girl.
Sophia has a steady boyfriend, Steve, and is happy in their relationship but Steve wants to push things further than just kissing and touching under shirt. Sophia is managing to come up with excuses not to go any further but worries Steve will get fed up of her saying no and look elsewhere for the kind of relationship he wants. Then she wonders is she is saying no and isn’t ready, is it that Steve isn’t “the one” for her and does she just need to pluck up the courage and “do it”? To be fair Steve doesn’t push Sophia, yet at the same time wants to know if she will be saying “yes” soon or not? Sophia thinks about what she would call her own “short comings” in comparison to other girls at Birchwood High School. Sophia isn’t as fun and social as Trina, or as confident, pretty or popular as Lucy.
Lucy McNeill may appear confident but she feels different, she thinks everything seems different this year. Her dad has once again left the family home, he has another woman, in fact his girlfriend is pregnant! Lucy compares her father’s girlfriend Amber, to someone who she reminds her of from school. To Lucy people like Amber and Trina are the same, in her opinion they are sluts who steal others boyfriends/husbands. These “sluts” also wear short skirts and wear far too much make-up too. Even though Lucy thinks this way she cannot seem to be able to finish her relationship with Steve and ends up buying some lacy underwear and posing in it, then sending photos to Steve. At this stage I was "woah! alarm bells!" and "Oh you silly girl"
Trina Davis hasn’t got a very good reputation at school and Lucy blames her for “stealing” her boyfriend Rhys. Trina has been seeing Rhys during the school holidays and hopes their relationship continues, she doesn’t see what Rhys ever saw in his ex-girlfriend. Trina hates that everyone sees her as the bad person, they think she stole Rhys! Trina and Lucy used to be kind of friends, well they used to have quite a few classes together. Trina cannot understand why Lucy should have any ill feeling towards her, its not like she stole Rhys. As far as Trina knows Rhys and Lucy had finished their relationship before Rhys went out with her!
Ulana is a Muslim girl whose family is strict and all she wishes is to have some of the freedom the other girls seem to have. Ulana has a secret boyfriend, Aiden. They try to have “proper dates” but have to be extra careful not to be seen. Ulana explains to Aiden that her family would not approve purely because he is not a “good muslim boy”, they are “not the same”, they “should not mix” Then Ulana meets Aiden’s family and it seems that her family isn’t the other one with prejudices about who their child should and shouldn’t date.

The overwhelming feeling you get from each girl is that they are not happy, they want more than they have. It seems all of the girls are wanting to be like one of the others as well as more than they currently are. Which I guess lots of teenagers, in fact, most teenagers go through this kind of thing. The writing is very true to life and different parts of the story are told by the individual girls that section is about. There were times I wanted to shout at the different girls or shake them by the shoulders, but then I am well past being a teenager myself. I readily admit to feeling the pressure of wanting to fit in. Envying the popular pretty girls and wanting the fit boys to notice you too, rather than treating you like "one of the boys" or "one of the gang".

I really loved one of the entries in Trina’s diary about why is it when you don’t want to see someone, all you do is see them everywhere you go lol. Whereas Ulana is having the opposite experience of when you really need to see someone you can never find them. Thing like this made the book relatable to me and I am sure it will have a similar effect with teenagers reading the book. 

Obviously where there’s girls there’s usually boys and we have some strong male characters within this book such as Rhys and Steve who are also making their own way through puberty etc.

There is a kind of "the moral of this story is..." aspect to this book when the girls at the end of the book come to a realisation that things could have been so different much sooner, if only they had spoken to each other.

I found the book to be an enjoyable read, though at times it became a little bit confusing trying to keep things straight in my head as I went along. Things such as which girl was with which boy and then keeping track of which girl had what secret.

Also at the end of this book is a link to join in the 
Wear Blue campaign in November 2019. 

The link is: http://www.bullying.co.uk/


Sunday, 12 May 2019

REVIEW - APPARENT POWER - DIAZEM SERIES BY DACIA M ARNOLD

Title: Apparent Power
Series: DiaZem Series
Author: Dacia M Arnold
Genre: Sci-Fi, Post Apocalyptic, Dystopian
Publisher: Immortal Works
Release Date: 8th February 2019

BLURB from Goodreads
A dormant gene awakens in a quarter of the world's population and the effects are apocalyptic. With an even rarer gene, the life of Valerie Russell turns into a shocking race against time. When the human body begins to require more electricity than needed to keep a heart beating, cars lose power, phones no longer function, and planes fall from the sky. Stranded in southern Colorado, a hundred miles from home--and from her two-year-old son-- Valerie must find it within herself to trek the distance with the help of a questionable assembly of ex-military friends of the family. But the awakening has a different effect on Valerie. While others absorb electricity, Valerie's abilities are not as limited, making her the key to unlocking a worldwide genocide of those who were not affected. As she evades the rising totalitarian government, Valerie is also faced with a moral choice: risk failure and attempt to save the masses from the regime's deadly plot or run and preserve only the lives of her family.How does a mother make such an impossible choice?


PURCHASE LINKS

REVIEW
I actually had this book recommended to me. The cover basically shows a glowing light bulb, and when I first looked at it, to be totally honest I was a little unimpressed, but that changed when I read the blurb, which I found interesting enough for me to want to read the book. There is already another book within this series but was told I did not need to read that one first, and upon reading the blurb of Reactance I think I would like to read it, and personally think it will be a better read for having read Apparent Power first. The genres I have seen listed for this book are Sci-Fi, Dystopian and Post Apocalyptic which I totally agree with and would add the book also has futuristic elements within it too.

The main character of this book is a 35year old, wife and mother, Valerie Marie Russell who wakes up as normal, still tired, body aching etc. she feels every year of her 35 years, but things are about to change drastically.  Valerie goes about her normal routine meaning she walks into the bathroom to have a shower. When she reaches toward the shower door handle electricity seems to shoot from her fingers to the shower door handle. Valerie naturally pulls her hand back to her. The shock she received didn’t hurt as much as it was more of a surprise than anything else. Then she looks at herself in the mirror and cannot believe what she sees. The image staring back at her in wonder is a much less tired and worn, there’s no skin blemishes, her pregnancy bumps, bulges and weight have also disappeared. She looks in the mirror with wonderment it’s as if her body has gone back in time, speaking of time she is running late so starts rushing, she will have to think of her physical changes later. Valerie is a medical nurse who fills in when hospitals are short staffed, today she is a two hour drive away. Valerie’s husband Scott comments on how good she looks and goes off to work himself, then Valerie gets their 2year old son Caleb ready for the arrival of the nanny, Gia.

As Valerie drives to work its clear something is horrendously wrong when people’s cars just stop, and airplanes begin dropping out of the skies. As she is almost at the small medical centre she is due to work in, she continues on foot. It is there she meets Dr August Wilkes, also a stand in Doctor who seems much older than his looks suggest. They attend the wounded with the help of the medical centre employees Betty and Roy. Naturally all Valerie can think about is whether Caleb is safe at home with Gia. All power has gone down meaning she cannot check in with Gia or contact her husband Scott. It is then Valerie decides she will walk home, but she will need some more supplies and a change of clothes for her journey. As she is in the neighbourhood of her brother Kevin and father Mike that’s where she heads first. Her brother Kevin, nor his wife are at home when she gets there so she lets herself in and goes straight for hiking equipment, backpack, medical supplies, food, weapons etc. Valerie is used to hiking so the walking doesn’t bother her at all. She used to go hiking regularly, it was something her father was very strict with his kids about. He believed they should know how to survive off grid and have survival skills. With some of the items she needs she heads off to her dads. Mike has a small amount of time to attempt to explain what is going on to Valerie and he cryptically keeps saying, “it wasn’t supposed to be you”. It soon becomes clear that Valerie and others like her are being hunted. She has to leave her dads home very quickly, and is to be helped on her journey back to her son by some military friends of her father.

The ”event” has uncovered a gene that had been laying dormant for years in human beings. There are “normal” people, then humans that are classed as conductors and then those with even more power who are called DiaZem. I don’t want to reveal a great deal more as this book is a fantastic read and you are told what details you need to know slowly within the book. Everything is revealed at the right time within the book for it all to make sense.

I really liked Valerie, I loved her morals, the fact she believes everyone to be equal. I also adored the way she stood up for herself, and those around her that she comes to class as friends. There’s a lot of rather, thought provoking material within the book, such as, why certain people should live and others considered inferior are to be wiped out. Valerie has her own strong ideas about what is right and wrong. Valerie has to fake acceptance a few times in the book as to be honest would mean the death of those she loves the most. The book has lots of action, suspense, betrayal and loss, all of which make it an exciting read that you will not want to put down. I managed to read the book in just two sittings. If I could have sat and read as long as I wanted (not being interrupted by chores, making food etc) I would have read this book in one sitting, it was that good”. I also came to adore the other strong female character in the book, Hyka. Hyka is a military medic and is part of SASQUATCH, which you will learn all about when you read the book. I thought the relationship between Valerie and Hyka was really well written. They seemed to start out almost hating each other but become great genuine friends by the end of the book. Valerie also has a fiery relationship with Major who happens to be Hyka’s dad. With Valerie and Major it’s more like a power struggle as well as Major making decisions with a military head whereas Valerie bases her decisions on what she feels to be right in her heart. There were of course other characters I liked such as Dr August Wilkes, Jack McGuire, Griff and Major.

Of course, when you have characters you love on the “good side”, you also have those you love to hate on the “bad side”. The characters that fall under this title and worth mentions are Dr Lucas Jarrett who will stop at nothing to ensure Valerie does his bidding. Then there’s Mike Burton who has kept a lot of information that he should have given to his daughter long before the “event” happened. Max who does have a difficult decision on which side to be on.

I was undeniably pulled right into this book, the world it was set in and its characters. I found the descriptions so good that they made it easy to viaualise whatever was being described. The book flowed well at a fairly medium pace and explained the whole genetic differences really well in a way I could understand it and work out which characters had the different genes quite easily. The book could be read by a YA audience but I honestly think this one will do really well with an older age range of reader also. The well written book style reminded of Steven Konkoly and a little like Grace Hamilton. It characters that you would say were preppers, ready for any possibility that could arise.
When I finished the book my first thoughts were, Wow! what can I say? Amazing read, looking forward to more!
To sum up I certainly wish to read more about books in this series. I would also wish to take a look at any other titles written by this author. When can I read more??


AUTHOR INTERVIEW

How many books will be in the DiaZem series? 
The series consists of 3 books following Valerie Russell, the heroine of the trilogy. There is also one companion novella written separate if the main series. Those characters will merge into the main story by book 3.

When should I read Reactance? 
The fun thing about Reactance is that it is more of a bonus story. If you never read it, you can still read the trilogy and not really miss too much. Stephenie Meyer did something similar with “The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner” and her Twilight series. I originally wrote the novella as a teaser to book 1, but it follows the timeline between books 1 and 2. If you were going to read it at all, any time before the 3rd book is perfect.

How did you get your ideas for Apparent Power? 
Apparent Power is a mash up of books and TV shows I was digging at the time and a fruitless search for adult dystopian novels like the ones written for YA.
I joined the army at 19, so while reading Divergent, I related a great deal to the main character, Tris, in the fact of being so young and going through this rigorous military training. When I finished the series, I tried doing a search for “adult version of Divergent” or “books for adult fans of Divergent” and came up with more YA novels.
So, I decided to write this book I could not find. At the time, Revolution was on TV and the plot circled around the world being without electricity. I am a sucker for interesting dystopian plot lines so I adapted it to something more original and took off with this adult story.

How did you choose the word “DiaZem” for the title for your series? 
For everyone who is not an electrician, Apparent Power is an electric term used to describe anything with power. This is also a pun on the main character being a mother and having power. The original title of the book was DiaZem, but I knew if I saw this on a shelf at the bookstore I would not pick it up. Dia is a latin word for “between” and Zem is a take on the Turkish word, Zemin, meaning ground. So, in keeping with the electrical theme, DiaZem is essentially a “grounding rod”.

Did you have to any specific research for Apparent Power?
If so what/how did you do it? I did a little research regarding metabolic science as well as electricity and how to demagnetize a magnet. Because I gave the body an alternative way of absorbing and expelling energy instead of taking in food and expelling calories through exercise, I wanted to keep within a believable set of rules which the reader could really buy into. All of the science mentioned in the book is based on real life principles which govern those systems.

Who designed the Cover of your book? Do you have a lot of input into the process? 
Max Seidel of Immortal Works Press, my former publisher, designed the cover where I had a huge hand in the dream of this cover. Like the popular dystopian novels, the subsequent covers will be different in color but maintain the light bulb for continuity.

If you had to choose to be a character from Apparent Power, which would you be and why? 
Hyka is most everyone’s favorite character. She comes off very intimidating, but her humor is hilariously subtle and dry. She was likely my favorite to write which is my much of Shifting Power, the second in the series, we will see a lot more of her.

Do you, basic plot/plan for each individual book in the series, before you actually begin writing it all out? Or do you let the writing flow and see where it takes the story?
I wrote Apparent Power beginning to end without an outline. I followed the formula of many YA dystopian novels, to include a moment before the climax where you have no idea how the main character could ever get out of their situation, I just had no idea what each plot point actually looked like going into it. The sequel, Shifting Power, which is due out November 5th, 2019, required much outlining to keep consistent with the previous story and new stakes.

How long did it take you to write Apparent Power? 
I began writing Apparent Power March 2015. I signed it to a publisher on December 2017. In between I took a solid 9 months off a writing while I transitioned between promotions at work. I never wrote anything before, but I did a lot in between which will be available in a collection in late May.

Did you have to do a lot of research for your DiaZem series? 
I am doing a fair bit of research regarding country wide disaster planning, past disaster clean up, nationwide surveillance and power grids. Being the leader of a rebellion is hard and there is so much to know and learn even as an author.

What can we expect from you next and in the future? 
The following titles are currently in the works:
Brightest Firefly: A Collection of Short Works May 28, 2019
Shifting Power (Book Two of the DiaZem Trilogy) November 5, 2019
Memoirs of a Dacia December 6th 2019
And a fantasy adventure The Hunt For Bheanoira 2020

When can we expect more of the DiaZem series?
Shifting Power, Book Two comes out November 5th 2019 and the final installation, Taking Power, will be out Fall 2020.

Where can your readers follow you?
  



Thursday, 9 May 2019

REVIEW - WHAT RED WAS BY ROSIE PRICE

Title: What Red Was
Author: Rosie Price
Genre: General Fiction (Adult), Literary Fiction
Publisher: Random House UK, Vintage Publishing
Release Date: 9th May 2019

BLURB from Goodreads
‘Kate Quaile,’ he said. ‘I like your name.’
Kate frowned. ‘How do you know my name?’

Through their four years at university, Kate and Max are inseparable. For him, she breaks her solitude; for her, he leaves his busy circles behind. But loving Max means knowing his family, the wealthy Rippons, all generosity, social ease and quiet repression. Theirs is not Kate’s world. At their London home, just after graduation, her life is shattered apart in a bedroom while a party goes on downstairs.

WHAT RED WAS explores the effects of trauma on mind and body, the tyrannies of memory, the sacrifices involved in staying silent, the courage of a young woman in speaking out. And when Kate does, this question: whose story is it now?


PURCHASE LINKS

REVIEW
I don’t really know why but I thought that this book was YA, until I began reading it and I discovered that the genre listings were general adult fiction and literary fiction. I think I had read that the characters were at university and just presumed that would make the book YA or NA. The cover of the book is bold and has the title depicted in red and white. Had the book been a paperback version on a book store shelf I honestly would not have picked it up as I have a medical condition called Meniere’s Disease and certain patterns actually trigger it. However, as I read the e-book it didn’t really make any difference to me as the cover was easily avoidable.

The books main characters are Kate Quaile and Max Rippon who actually meet whilst they are living away from home at University. The pair become firm friends after Max locks himself out of his apartment wearing only a towel! To be honest I don’t think Max and Kate would have moved in the same social circles and would never have met and developed a friendship. Max is from a rather high flying, affluent family. His mother is a famous film director, Mrs Zara Rippons, aka Zara Lalhou and his father Dr William Rippons is a cardiovascular surgeon. One of the things that Max and Kate have is that they both have homes in Randwick area. Alison Quaile, Kates mum lives in a small dwelling, whereas the Rippons family have a rather grand home, Bisley House. Though Bisley House does actually belong to Max’s paternal grandmother Bernadette Rippons. Max ends up introducing Kate to his family and inviting her to parties and to stay over in the various Rippon residences. It’s during one of these parties that Kate is raped by Lewis, who is Max’s cousin.

I loved envisioning the scene when Max and Kate first meet. Max clutching a bath towel desperate for help to get back into his flat. Knocking on doors asking for help.
Obviously there is a rape scene in the book, which personally I think was well written, not overly descriptive or harrowing but non the less it is a rape scene, so reader beware!

I thought Kate and Max had a good and genuine friendship. Kate supports Max when his Uncle Rupert has a car accident. Unfortunately, the crash is the result of drinking and driving so yes, there is more than one awkward, perhaps taboo subject covered in this book. Kate is surprised to hear that Max’s mother is the famous director Zara Lalhou and is immediately in awe but makes sure not to ask too many questions about her or take advantage of her friendship with Max in anyway. At some times in the book Max and Kate grow further apart. Max enjoying the high life and easy drug culture with Elias for a while leaving Kate feeling a little lonely. Then when Kate starts a relationship, she is busy with her boyfriend, perhaps leaving Max a little adrift.

One character I adored in the book was Bernadette Rippons, the owner of Bisley House. Bernadette is used to things being her way or no way! I found one scene particularly funny when she purposely calls her daughter-in-law Sara rather than Zara knowing full well that it will irritate her.

Everything builds up to a kind of climax with Kate deciding she is ready to tell Max who her rapist was. Then she attends the premiere of Zara’s latest film that contains a rape scene. Zara has prewarned Kate that the subject of the film has a rape featured within in it as she knows about Kate’s rape, though not who the rapist is. As Kate watches the film she recognises more and more similarities between her rape and the one in Zara’s film. In fact it seems Zara has used some details of Kates rape within her film. It is at the end of the film that Max and his sister Nicole realise who Kates rapist was.

I did enjoy reading the book despite originally thinking it was YA/NA. I do think the older end of YA/NA could and possibly would read this book. The book was a mixture of light university life crossed with the more series and maybe a little more controversial subjects of drink-driving, drug taking and rape.

My immediate thoughts upon finishing the book were that it had felt like a bit of an odd read for me. I don’t know how to explain it, I had mixed feelings reading it, hence the four out of five rating on Goodreads. 

Saturday, 4 May 2019

REVIEW - IMMINENT DAWN - EMPATHY BY R. R. CAMPBELL

Title: Imminent Dawn
Series: EMPATHY
Author: R. R. Campbell
Genre: Sci-fi, Thriller, LGBTQIA, Fantasy.
Publisher: NineStar Press
Release Date: 28th January 2019

BLURB from Goodreads
Four people. One study. The internet-access brain implant to bind or destroy them all.

Art-school dropout Chandra would do anything to apologize for her role in her wife’s coma—including enroll in the first round of human trials for an internet-access brain implant.

At first, the secretive research compound is paradise, the perfect place to distract Chandra from her grief. But as she soon learns, the facility is more prison than resort, with its doctors, support staff, and her fellow patients all bent on hatching plots of their own, no matter how invested they might seem in helping her communicate with her wife.

Making matters worse, a dark wave of uncertainty crashes down on the compound, forcing Chandra to become an unlikely but pivotal player in conspiracies stretching from the highest levels of the North American Union government to the lowest dredges of its shadowy hacking collectives.

To save herself and her wife, Chandra and her newfound friends from the study will have to overcome the scheming of a ruthless tech magnate, the naïveté of an advancement-hungry administrative assistant, and the relentless pursuits of an investigative journalist, all of whom are determined to outpace the others in their own quests to resurrect lost love, cover their tracks, and uncover the truth.

A twistedly delightful clockwork of intrigue and suspense, EMPATHY: Imminent Dawn is an electrifying sci-fi debut from author R. R. Campbell.


PURCHASE LINKS
Amazon UK



REVIEW
I love discovering Authors I haven't read before, so that's what had me taking a closer look at this title. Then when I read the blurb it made me think of Body Parts by Jessica Kepp and The Unit by Ninni Holmqvist.

The cover is appealing and eye catching enough and with the title “Imminent Dawn” and its potential meaning it made me want to pick up the book and learn more. The blurb then further sold the book to me with its Sci-Fi elements the whole humanisation of the big experiment and what it could mean for one of those taking part. It could be the only way she gets to communicate with her wife who is in a coma.

I was instantly engrossed and really enjoyed the first chapter but then irritatingly things tailed off and much slower paced and more the backstory. The whole series title EMPATHY fits extremely well. There’s a lot going on in this book. Dr Wyatt Halman is the one that is behind the whole idea of internet access brain implant. Those in Dr Wyatt’s immediate circle are his family, consisting of his children and his brother-in-law. Still Dr Wyatt hold back on some of the important experiment details. He keeps all the necessary details on paper, locked away in his safe. To which is immediate family will only gain access to upon his death.

Dr W Halman is a strange man, willing to use the brain of someone very dear to him to test his theories. Whilst reading the book I went through a lot of different feelings and thoughts on him as a character. When the reader discovers the losses in his family you feel sympathy, but then there’s all the mistakes and side effects of the trial that he is hiding.

I loved the character of Chandra, who becomes the face of Dr Wyatt Halman’s experiments. At first Chandra doesn’t care what it takes she will consent to anything for a slim chance of being able to talk to her wife once again who is in a coma. Her wife, Kyra was involved in an accident, one that Chandra ends up feeling entirely responsible for. Without giving away anything too spoilerish both Chandra and Kyra end up with their worlds turned upside down.

Another character I loved was Meredith, stuck working as a journalist at an, at best “middle of the road” newspaper. Then suddenly she starts receiving inside information about what is going on, and going wrong at the Human/Etech research compound. All workers and those taking part in the experimental research are cut off from the outside world for the duration of the experiment and they have all signed contracts to this effect. Meredith ends up not just putting her career on the line but her finances, and even her life.

My immediate thoughts upon finishing the book were that I was glad I persevered with it and read it to the end. Although at times it was a slower pace than I would have preferred, I did end up enjoying the book as a whole.



To finish up although I found this book a slower, more in depth, sci-fi read I am interested in more of the EMPATHY Series and what is still to come.









Friday, 3 May 2019

MAY 2019 NEW RELEASES

I just wanted to share some of the May 2019 releases that either caught my eye or that I would love to read or have read and the reviews are coming soon.

THE BRIDE TEST
(THE KISS QUOTIENT BK1)
BY HELEN HOANG

Khai Diep has no feelings. Well, he feels irritation when people move his things or contentment when ledgers balance down to the penny, but not big, important emotions—like grief. And love. He thinks he’s defective. His family knows better—that his autism means he just processes emotions differently. When he steadfastly avoids relationships, his mother takes matters into her own hands and returns to Vietnam to find him the perfect bride.

As a mixed-race girl living in the slums of Ho Chi Minh City, Esme Tran has always felt out of place. When the opportunity arises to come to America and meet a potential husband, she can’t turn it down, thinking this could be the break her family needs. Seducing Khai, however, doesn’t go as planned. Esme’s lessons in love seem to be working…but only on herself. She’s hopelessly smitten with a man who’s convinced he can never return her affection.

With Esme’s time in the United States dwindling, Khai is forced to understand he’s been wrong all along. And there’s more than one way to love.

AURORA RISING
(THE AURORA CYCLE)
BY 
AMIE KAUFMAN & JAY KRISTOFF

The year is 2380, and the graduating cadets of Aurora Academy are being assigned their first missions. Star pupil Tyler Jones is ready to recruit the squad of his dreams, but his own boneheaded heroism sees him stuck with the dregs nobody else in the Academy would touch…

A cocky diplomat with a black belt in sarcasm
A sociopath scientist with a fondness for shooting her bunkmates
A smart-ass techwiz with the galaxy’s biggest chip on his shoulder
An alien warrior with anger management issues
A tomboy pilot who’s totally not into him, in case you were wondering

And Ty’s squad isn’t even his biggest problem—that’d be Aurora Jie-Lin O’Malley, the girl he’s just rescued from interdimensional space. Trapped in cryo-sleep for two centuries, Auri is a girl out of time and out of her depth. But she could be the catalyst that starts a war millions of years in the making, and Tyler’s squad of losers, discipline-cases and misfits might just be the last hope for the entire galaxy.

They're not the heroes we deserve. They're just the ones we could find. Nobody panic.
THE FARM
BY JOANNE RAMOS

Nestled in the Hudson Valley is a sumptuous retreat boasting every amenity: organic meals, private fitness trainers, daily massages--and all of it for free. In fact, you get paid big money--more than you've ever dreamed of--to spend a few seasons in this luxurious locale. The catch? For nine months, you belong to the Farm. You cannot leave the grounds; your every move is monitored. Your former life will seem a world away as you dedicate yourself to the all-consuming task of producing the perfect baby for your überwealthy clients.

Jane, an immigrant from the Philippines and a struggling single mother, is thrilled to make it through the highly competitive Host selection process at the Farm. But now pregnant, fragile, consumed with worry for her own young daughter's well-being, Jane grows desperate to reconnect with her life outside. Yet she cannot leave the Farm or she will lose the life-changing fee she'll receive on delivery--or worse.

Heartbreaking, suspenseful, provocative, The Farm pushes our thinking on motherhood, money, and merit to the extremes, and raises crucial questions about the trade-offs women will make to fortify their futures and the futures of those they love.

ASK ME ANYTHING
BY MOLLY E LEE

I should’ve kept my mouth shut.

But Wilmont Academy’s been living in the Dark Ages when it comes to sex ed, and someone had to take matters into her own hands. Well, I’m a kick-ass coder, so I created a totally anonymous, totally untraceable blog where teens can come to get real, honest, nothing-is-off-limits sex advice.

And holy hell, the site went viral—and we’re talking way beyond Wilmont—overnight. Who knew this town was so hard up?

Except now the school administration is trying to shut me down, and they’ve forced Dean—my coding crush, aka the hottest guy in school—to try to uncover who I am. If he discovers my secret, I’ll lose him forever. And thousands of teens who need real advice won’t have anyone to turn to.

Ask me anything…except how to make things right.



STORM CURSED
(MERCY THOMPSON BK11)
BY PATRICIA BRIGGS

My name is Mercedes Athena Thompson Hauptman, and I am a car mechanic.

And a coyote shapeshifter . . . And the mate of the Alpha of the Columbia Basin werewolf pack.

Even so, none of that would have gotten me into trouble if, a few months ago, I hadn't stood upon a bridge and taken responsibility for the safety of the citizens who lived in our territory. It seemed like the thing to do at the time. It should have only involved hunting down killer goblins, zombie goats, and an occasional troll. Instead, our home was viewed as neutral ground, a place where humans would feel safe to come and treat with the fae.

The reality is that nothing and no one is safe. As generals and politicians face off with the Gray Lords of the fae, a storm is coming and her name is Death.
But we are pack, and we have given our word. We will die to keep it.



MEAT MARKET
BY JUNO DAWSON


The heroine of the novel, Jana Novak, is a girl from a south London estate. Despite being uncomfortable with her looks she is unexpectedly scouted and catapulted to fashion superstardom. The industry is, however, as grimy as it is glamorous and there are unexpected predators at every turn.

WHAT RED WAS
BY ROSIE PRICE


When Kate Quaile meets Max Rippon in the first week of university, a life-changing friendship begins. Over the next four years, the two become inseparable. For him, she breaks her solitude; for her, he leaves his busy circles behind. But knowing Max means knowing his family: the wealthy Rippons, all generosity, social ease, and quiet repression. Theirs is a very different world from Kate’s own upbringing, and yet she finds herself quickly drawn into their gilded lives, and the secrets that lie beneath. Until one evening, at the Rippons home, just after graduation, her life is shattered apart in a bedroom while a party goes on downstairs.

What Red Was is an incisive and mesmerizing novel about power, privilege, and consent--one that fearlessly explores the effects of trauma on the mind and body of a young woman, the tyrannies of memory, the sacrifices involved in staying silent, and the courage in speaking out. And when Kate does, it raises this urgent question: whose story is it now?





Wednesday, 1 May 2019

COVER REVEAL - IN MOONLIGHT AND MEMORIES TRILOGY BY JULIE ANN WALKER

From NYT and USA Today bestselling author Julie Ann Walker comes an epic tale of sacrifice, friendship, and the awe-inspiring power of love.

The 
“In Moonlight and Memories” 
trilogy debuts July 1st!

Amazon: 
Barnes&Noble: 
iBooks: 
Kobo: 


Amazon: 
Barnes&Noble: 
iBooks: 


Amazon: 
Barnes&Noble: 
iBooks: 
Kobo: 

ABOUT THE BOOKS

Title: In Moonlight and Memories trilogy
Author: Julie Ann Walker
Release Date: July 1, 2019

BLURB supplied via Author
Maggie: Ten years ago, Cash Armstrong stole my heart. Then he promptly joined the army—dragging my best friend with him—and left me crying on the front porch in a red sequined prom dress. Now he's back. They're both back. Cash, the one who still has my heart. And Luc, the one who saved my life.

Cash: How do you know if you’re at the end of the beginning or the beginning of the end? That's what I've been trying to figure out since a traumatic brain injury made me "unfit to serve." I'm back in New Orleans, and picking up the shattered pieces of my past means I must confront where my life's journey began... and where it all might end.

Luc: Long ago, Maggie May was mine. Not mine in the way you might think. She was mine because she was my only friend. Then Cash came along and we became brothers by something stronger than blood. We became brothers by choice. When tragedy struck, I was forced to make a decision that changed all our lives. I thought, after ten years, it was safe to come back home. I was wrong... 

A little about Julie…
Born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Julie grew up in a house full of women – she has three older sisters. As you can imagine, there was no lack of drama… or romance. Her mother enrolled her in a book club as soon as she began to read and it was the small spark that ignited her voracious appetite for the written word.C
Because of Julie’s early immersion in literature, she found writing came quite naturally. In high school, she won multiple writing contests and was the proud senior editor of The Tiger’s Tale – her school newspaper.
During her college years, however, she longed for a challenge. “Reading and writing felt like second nature to me, so I looked for a way to flex my mental muscles,” she recalls. After receiving a Bachelor of Science degree, Julie began teaching advanced high school mathematics.
“I loved working with the students and facing the challenges of the classroom, but I longed for the occasional snow day when I could race to the local book store, buy two or three new novels, and curl up in front of the fire to read.”
It wasn’t until a fortuitous move to Chicago that Julie once more returned to her first passion.
Now Julie loves to travel the world looking for views to compete with her deadlines. When she’s not writing, she enjoys camping, hiking, cycling, cooking, petting every dog that walks by her, and… reading, of course!

Author Links:
Website: 
http://www.julieannwalker.com
Facebook: 
https://www.facebook.com/julieannwalkerauthor
Twitter: 
https://twitter.com/JAWalkerAuthor
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/julieannwalker_author/


And always remember, 
“The greatest of loves can begin 
in the simplest of ways...”