June 24, 2017

Book Blitz + Giveaway: The Lunam Deception by Nicole Loufas


 


The Lunam Deception (The Lunam Series #2)
Author: Nicole Loufas
Genre: New Adult Urban Fantasy

Publication Date: June 20, 2017

Description:

Kalysia has lived her life according to others – a fate she will not pass on to her child. When a conspiracy to bring down the pack threatens to uncover her darkest secrets; Kalysia must fight to protect the truth about the man she wants, at the expense of the man she was fated to love.

Jase has fought his entire life. For his honor, his freedom, and his family. Nothing in his past could’ve prepare him for her. Kalyisa is everything he never knew he always wanted. Is he willing to risk his life, her honor, and Dillan’s pride to win her heart?

“In here,” I call to him and try not to laugh. I don’t know why I always get giggly when I’m trying to be sexy.
Dillan appears in the doorway.
“Oh baby, you have no idea how hot you look right now.”
He steps into the room and pulls his shirt off. “I’m one lucky bastard.”
“Yes, you are,” I agree.
He unhooks his belt with one hand and kneels on the bed. He bends down, and kisses my knee as his hand rubs up my leg; then stops short. He crawls up the bed toward my face.
“My hands are dirty.”
I run my fingers through his hair.
“Really? Where have your hands been?” I tease.
“I drove the Jeep from the brew-house. Who knows what kind of germs are on that steering wheel.”
He kisses my neck and presses his hips against me. The thin material of his boxers can’t contain his excitement.
“Thank you for not contaminating my lady parts.”
I pull his mouth to mine and taste today’s batch on his tongue.
“I care deeply about your lady parts.”
He licks my breast, and chills cover every inch of my body.
“My kid is cooking in there.”
He moves his hand to my belly as his tongue circles my nipple.
“I want his environment to be as germ-free as possible.”
“His?” I tease.
“Did I say his?” Dillan gives me a coy smile.
I know he’s hoping for a boy. All the guys are.
Dillan rolls me over, so I’m on top of him in all my naked and bloated glory. My swollen belly doesn’t affect his arousal. I moan so loud when he slips inside me; I’m sure Leah will comment on it later. I’m never more certain of my feelings for Dillan than when we’re having sex.
I look at him from across the lodge and sometimes as he sleeps. My heart still stammers when he kisses me or takes my hand when we’re walking. But there is always a sliver of doubt that crosses my mind. A certain way he smiles at Cassie or the sadness that creeps into his eyes when he thinks nobody is looking. I wonder if he feels it too. The only moments of peace come when we’re tangled up naked in our bed. Only then does the world feel right.
Dillan and I lie in bed afterward, watching the light in the room fade into night.
He kisses my head. “I needed that.”
“Hard day at the brew-house, dear?”
Dillan tightens his grip on me. “I got a call from my father.”
“It wasn’t good news, I assume.”
It never is where Lowell is concerned.
“He called to congratulate me on becoming a father.” He smirks. “I asked him which baby he was congratulating me on.”
“What did he say?” I try to sit up so I can see his face, but he won’t let me.
“He’s honoring his promise to Conall.” Dillan pauses. “I’m sorry, babe. I tried to reason with him, but he wouldn’t listen.”
“It isn’t your fault.” I don’t sound very convincing.
If we both just accepted our roles, none of this would be happening. Dillan sits up and turns on the lamp beside the bed. He runs his hands over his face and groans.
“What am I supposed to do?”
I assume his question is rhetorical.
If Dillan supports Lowell and claims Cassie’s child as his trueborn heir, he maintains his place in the pack, inherits Sierra-Duke, and his family’s fortune. Sometimes I believe this is a good thing; our child won’t be obligated to the pack the same way we were. Call it ego or pride, but the thought of Cassie’s child ruling over mine, makes me want to break things. When I say things, I mean Cassie.
“Do what’s right,” I tell him.
Unlike Lowell, I refuse to bully Dillan to my side. I don’t have to. Dillan loves me; therefore, he loves our child. He would never dishonor either of us.
“I will lose everything when I claim our child as my heir.” He turns around to look at me. “I’ll just be another employee of Sierra-Duke. I get nothing.”
Dillan doesn’t just lose his inheritance; he also loses status. Each leader must have a Lunam child that is accepted by the council. If Lowell gives his support to Cassie’s child, the council will honor his request. It isn’t a matter of screwing me over—these things have been done for hundreds of years.
Dillan may lose his title as future leader, but I’ll still maintain power. As long as we’re together, nothing else matters.
“You get me.” I reach up and touch his face. “Forever.”
Dillan climbs on top of me and pulls the sheets from between us. He examines my naked body and says, “I think I can live with this for the next fifty years.”
We miss the dinner bell.
We miss breakfast too.


Nicole was born and raised in California. She claims to be a San Francisco native, however she's lived in both Northern and Southern California. She credits her creativity to the fact that she attended 12 schools between kindergarten and her senior year in high school. Her nomadic childhood allowed her to reinvent herself often. Some might say she was a liar. While others see the stories she told as a coping mechanism. Twelve schools, in six cities, in twelve years - give her a break. Today she channels her storytelling ability into writing novels. Long story short - kids that lie become writers.

 
 
 
 
 
 
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June 23, 2017

Such a Good Girl Blog Tour: Review + Giveaway

http://fantasticflyingbookclub.blogspot.com/2017/05/tour-schedule-such-good-girl-by-amanda.html


Such a Good Girl
Author: Amanda K. Morgan
Genre: YA Contemporary
Release Date: June 20, 2017
Publisher: Simon Pulse
 photo addtogoodreadssmall_zpsa2a6cf28.png photo B6096376-6C81-4465-8935-CE890C777EB9-1855-000001A1E900B890_zps5affbed6.jpg

Description:

Riley Stone is just about perfect. (Ask anyone.)
She has a crush on her French teacher, Alex Belrose. (And she suspects he likes her, too.)
Riley has her entire life planned out. (The plan is nonnegotiable.)
She's never had a secret she couldn't keep. (Not ever.)
Riley is sure that her life is on the right track. (And nothing will change that.)
She's nothing like a regular teenager. (But she doesn't have any problem admitting that.)
Riley doesn't usually play games. (But when she does, she always wins.)
 

She thinks a game is about to start...
But Riley always has a plan...
And she always wins.

Such a Good Girl is a thrilling YA contemporary that will have readers on the edge of their seats and devouring each page. This is going to be kind of hard for me to review because I don't want to give anything away - and that's tricky for this book. The description gives you a little taste of Riley - the main character - but doesn't really tell you much about the plot. It's twisty, dark, and full of suspense. I got sucked in immediately and couldn't quit reading until I finished - which only took a few hours. I honestly haven't been drawn into a book that way in awhile, so that's how I know it's a good one. 

Riley is a fascinating and unique main character. She's a "good girl" - she has been as perfect as possible from a young age. She gets perfect grades, is valedictorian, captain of the cheer squad, tries to be humble and nice to everyone, doesn't drink or even attend parties, does tons of charity work and fundraisers - including running several - and so on. She must be perfect and won't accept anything else. She has flaws - everyone does - and one of these (in her mind) is crushing on her French teacher. I'm not going into detail here because I don't want to ruin anything, but let's just say we get to know Riley a lot better and we see some of her other qualities that she doesn't show anyone else. She was incredibly realistic and easy for me to connect with right away. Mostly because she reminded me of myself, especially when I was in high school. I could identify with a lot of her "rules" that she has for herself. Perfect grades. No partying. Always be seen in a good light. Make your parents proud. Be a star student. And so on. I got her and fell into her thoughts easily. Didn't quite prepare me for what was to come though - that's all I'm saying about that. One other mention is about the writing style. The book is done in the first person, from Riley's perspective. I'm SO happy the author chose to write it this way! It was the perfect fit for the story and it definitely wouldn't have had the same impact if written in another way. Riley's point of view was exactly how this should've been told - and it allowed the story to flow effortlessly but with tons of suspense and tension building.

The plot was awesome. I didn't know what to expect going in because of the vague-ish description, but I wanted to give it a shot. Needless to say, I lost myself in the story and I'm still kind of reeling (and somewhat confused) about what happens. There are lots of twists you don't see coming at all. I thought I knew where things were going and what was really happening, but I was always wrong. I love thrillers and it takes a lot to impress me after reading so many, but this managed to do it. Towards the end, I had figured most of it out, but I couldn't stop reading. The story just kept getting more suspenseful and I just had to see what was going to happen next. That's about all I can say without spoilers, but I loved it. I very highly recommend this one for fans of YA thrillers, mysteries, suspense, and contemporary!
Amanda K. Morgan is a freelance writer living in Nashville, TN. She covers events and works on freelance projects when she isn't working on her YA novels.
 

At age 15, Amanda finished her first novel and continued to write in college, where she graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree in English and an emphasis in Creative Writing.
 

Amanda’s books include After Hours, written as Claire Kennedy, Secrets Lies and Scandals, and Such a Good Girl.
 

For more information on Amanda's freelance/technical writing, to ask for information on a specific project, or for other questions, contact her.

 (1) $25 Barnes & Noble Gift Card
US only
Giveaway ends 6/29
Please read the Rules & Regs in the Rafflecopter before entering





 

Book Blast + Giveaway: Transformation by James Gunn



Transformation (Transcendental Machine #3)
Author: James Gunn
Release Date: June 20, 2017
Publisher: Tor Books

Description:

Planets at the edge of the Federation have been falling mysteriously silent. The arrogant and recalcitrant bureaucracy running the Federation grudgingly allows two transcended humans, Riley and Asha, to investigate. They join forces with the Earth's Pedia, a global A.I., along with Tordor, a Dorian representative of the Federation, and Adithya, a member of a splinter group vowing to destroy the Pedia. No one on the team trusts one another.

They must find a common ground and the answer to the planetary silences in order to confront an enemy more ancient than the Transcendentals and more powerful than any Pedia.  


Praise for TRANSCENDENTAL:

“Jim Gunn doesn’t publish a new novel very often, but when he does it’s a whopper. Transcendental is his best yet, and in it he demonstrates his possession of one of the most finely developed skills at world-building (and at aliens-creating to populate those worlds) in science fiction today. Read it!” —Frederik Pohl, bestselling author of Gateway

“James Gunn, after a long, stellar career in science fiction, is a master of the narrative art—as he shows in this Chaucerian pilgrimage through the galactic future.” —Robert Silverberg, bestselling author of Lord Valentine’s Castle

Praise for JAMES GUNN:

“Reads more like a collaboration between Heinlein and Asimov. The concept is pure, classic science fiction.” —New York Times Book Review on Star Bridge

“Its characters, at least the protagonists, are drawn with psychological depth. The charm and vividness of Gunn’s prose, plus his deft hand at keeping his plot moving, will keep readers on board through the end. The recent saga of Occupy Wall Street and the other Occupy movements around the country makes many of the events and actors of Kampus feel very current.” —Fantastical Andrew Fox

“One of the very best portrayals of contact with extraterrestrial intelligence ever written.” —Carl Sagan on The Listeners 

 CHAPTER ONE

The invasion began a million or more long-cycles ago, but the galaxy is bigger than minds can encompass, and information crawls across interstellar space if it moves at all. The Galactic Federation was slow to recognize the nature of the danger.

The Galactic Federation is a misnomer. It actually occupies only a single spiral arm of the local galaxy that humans call “the Milky Way,” although in recent long-cycles explorations began into the neighboring spiral arm in search of what had become known as the Transcendental Machine. So it is not surprising that the invasion went unnoticed until remote worlds of the Federation began to fall silent, sending out no capsule messages through the network of nexus points that made interstellar travel and communication possible, and failing to acknowledge those sent as routine reports or inquiries.

Finally, bureaucracy stirred and dispatched automated survey ships and, when they did not return, ships staffed with representatives of the various species that made up the Federation. They, too, went missing until, at last, a single damaged vessel appeared in a space monitored by Federation Central and remained motionless where it had materialized from a nexus point. When it was finally reached and boarded, investigators found its crew dead except for a single survivor, the captain.

He was a Dorian and his guttural voice was recorded before he died. “They are all dead, all dead,” he said. It wasn’t clear to his rescuers whether he was referring to his crew or the inhabitants of the planets they surveyed. “We brought them into the ship, thinking they were evidence of what had happened, maybe recordings, our science officer said. But they must have been poisoned. They were sterilized, you know, according to protocol. We did everything by protocol. They swarmed out, unseen but we knew they were there by what happened. The crew went mad, you see. The invisible creatures did that, and the crew turned upon each other as if they were trying to get away. But they couldn’t until they all were dead. All dead.”

The investigators found no evidence in the ship’s automated records about invaders, only recordings of the crew killing each other with their bare hands and anything they could tear away from the ship to use as weapons. The ship had returned only because the captain had programmed instructions to be executed automatically in case of emergency.

Finally Federation Central began to take seriously the possibility that something mysterious and possibly invisible had emerged in the unexplored spiral arms of the galaxy, or had entered the galaxy from somewhere beyond the zone of thinning stars and the beginning of intergalactic space. Three long-cycles later the news reached Riley and Asha and the Pedia at the heart of the human world.

Asha sent a message to Riley: “Get in touch about silent stars. Pedia says invasion is 92.4 percent likely.”

Riley turned to a rejuvenated Jak in his subsurface lunar laboratory. Jak was a mad scientist, who had turned his own clones into agents in the quest for the Transcendental Machine. Riley had entrusted Jak with the matter-transmission process that had led to transcendence. It was an act of blind trust if not even hubris—Jak was a mad scientist but he was Riley’s mad scientist. Now, with a copy of the Transcendental Machine reproduced in Jak’s laboratory, Jak had been his own experimental subject, followed by his daughter Jer, and the process had restored Jak’s health if not his youth. He was still mad, only not as desperate.

The laboratory itself was much as it had been when Riley had told Jak and Jer about the Transcendental Machine and left with them the red sphere that he had discovered on the primitive planet where the Transcendental Machine had stranded him, where dinosaurs had survived or avoided the catastrophes that had destroyed their kind, or their evolutionary equivalents, on other worlds. The red sphere had survived the millennia as well, the only known artifact in this arm of the galaxy of the creatures who had created the Transcendental Machine. Perhaps it held their secrets as well.

But now the laboratory was filled with the machinery of transcendence.

“The Pedia thinks the galaxy has been invaded,” Riley said.

“The Pedia doesn’t think,” Jak said. “It calculates.”

“Still—”

“Its calculations are usually accurate, although limited by a lack of imagination.”

“So—you think there is an invasion?”

Jak shrugged. “That’s a matter of definition. The galaxy is big and vast spiral arms are unexplored, even unapproached, like the ‘terra incognita’ of deepest Africa in the nineteenth century. So who knows what may lurk in the vast unknown, like the culture that created the Transcendental Machine, until it bursts into our sphere of awareness.”

“Your point is that it doesn’t matter whether it is native to our galaxy or from another galaxy?”

Jak shrugged again. He was clearly bored with this line of discussion. He bored easily, when it was not his idea.

“But surely what does matter is whether we are being invaded.”

“We?” Jak said. “It’s the Federation’s problem.”

“But what if the Federation is overmatched?”

“We’ll all be long dead before it affects our little corner of the galaxy,” Jak said. “If it ever does. The galaxy is far bigger and its stars are far more distant from each other than any of us—even me—can imagine. Our system is remote and in an impoverished neighborhood. It might easily be overlooked.”

“And that’s reason enough not to be concerned?”

“The Pedia has to be concerned,” Jak said. “That’s its categorical imperative: the welfare of the human species. That’s what I mean by a lack of imagination. We have other choices. And wasting my limited moments of existence on a possible invasion in the remote future by unknown creatures is not one of them.”

“So you think it’s possible?”

“Oh, I think it’s likely. As I said, the Pedia’s calculations are pretty accurate, and it has greater calculating power than anything this side of Federation Central itself. I just choose not to get involved.”

Riley nodded and made arrangements to return to Earth. He would deal with Jak later.

Copyright © 2017 by James Gunn

 
JAMES GUNN is the Hugo Award–winning author of Transcendental, Transgalactic, and The Listeners, and the coauthor, with Jack Williamson, of the classic epic SF novel Star Bridge. He lives in Lawrence, Kansas, where he is professor emeritus of English at the University of Kansas. He is the founding director of the university's Center for the Study of Science Fiction. Gunn is also one of the last living Grandmaster Award winners from the golden age of science fiction. www.sfcenter.ku.edu

  
 You can purchase Transformation at the following Retailers:
 
 (5) Winners will receive a Set of the Trilogy (TRANSCENDENTAL in Trade Paperback, TRANSGALACTIC in Hardcover, and TRANSFORMATION in hardcover).
Giveaway is open to International. | Must be 13+ to Enter
 






 

June 22, 2017

Soleri Blog Tour: Review, Excerpt + Giveaway

http://www.jeanbooknerd.com/2017/05/soleri-by-michael-johnston.html


Soleri
Author: Michael Johnston
Genre: Adult Fantasy
Release Date: June 13, 2017
Publisher: Tor Books

Description:

Michael Johnston brings you the first in a new epic fantasy series inspired by ancient Egyptian history and King Lear.

The ruling family of the Soleri Empire has been in power longer than even the calendars that stretch back 2,826 years. Those records tell a history of conquest and domination by a people descended from gods, older than anything in the known world. No living person has seen them for centuries, yet their grip on their four subjugate kingdoms remains tighter than ever.

On the day of the annual eclipse, the Harkan king, Arko-Hark Wadi, sets off on a hunt and shirks his duty rather than bow to the emperor. Ren, his son and heir, is a prisoner in the capital, while his daughters struggle against their own chains. Merit, the eldest, has found a way to stand against imperial law and marry the man she desires, but needs her sister’s help, and Kepi has her own ideas.

Meanwhile, Sarra Amunet, Mother Priestess of the sun god’s cult, holds the keys to the end of an empire and a past betrayal that could shatter her family.

Detailed and historical, vast in scope and intricate in conception, Soleri bristles with primal magic and unexpected violence. It is a world of ancient and elaborate rites, of unseen power and kingdoms ravaged by war, where victory comes with a price, and every truth conceals a deeper secret.   


Praise for SOLERI:

"Soleri is bloody and utterly epic. A huge saga in a rich and deeply original world.” ―Lev Grossman, New York Times bestselling author

“Prepare to be ensnared in a web of ruthless politics and unbridled ambition, where even the authority of the emperor may be based on an ancient deception. Johnston builds an immersive world with elements of Egyptian and Roman history, myth, and religion. This story seethes with twists and turns, betrayals and secrets, and will keep you guessing until the very last page.” ―Cinda Williams Chima, New York Times bestselling author


http://www.jeanbooknerd.com/2017/05/soleri-by-michael-johnston.html
 

Soleri is a mesmerizing first book in what promises to be an epic fantasy series - and it definitely one that fans of the genre should pick up. I enjoy reading fantasy, but I haven't read much in the high fantasy category. It always seems a bit intimidating, but I thought I'd give it a shot. I'm so glad I did! This was a fantastic novel full of history, myth, magic, politics, family, and so much more. Every aspect of the story was incredibly well crafted - no exceptions. The setting was amazing - full of vivid imagery and detailed descriptions that brought this world to life. I loved all the Egyptian-esque qualities built in. Each location was richly imagined and I enjoyed learning about each place and their inhabitants. I hope the next book allows us even more insight into this world - it's operation, history, politics, and all its secrets. 

The story has a unique narration - it's told from the viewpoints of five different characters, all from the ruling family. Each one has their own personal story lines that intersect with the overarching plot of the novel. I really liked getting to know each of these characters - their lives, problems, dreams, secrets, and everything in between. The only small issue I had with the writing style was the use of the third person POV. I'm a huge fan of the first person and almost always prefer it over any other style. I completely understand why the author chose to use the third person - due to the many main characters, it would've been confusing for them all to be told in the first person. I know this makes sense for many reasons, but I guess I'm pretty stubborn when it comes to this opinion. Please remember that this is exactly that - my own personal opinion - and has absolutely nothing to do with the story or writing itself. It's just a personal preference and I thought I'd share it because it had an impact on my reading experience. Overall, this was a wonderful first book in a promising new fantasy series, and I'm excited to see where the author will take us next. Definitely recommended for fans of fantasy, historical, and paranormal fiction. 
 
Michael Johnston was born in 1973 in Cleveland, Ohio. As a child and a teen he was an avid reader of science fiction and fantasy. He studied architecture and ancient history at Lehigh University and during a lecture on the history of ancient Egypt, the seed of an idea was born. He earned a master’s degree in architecture from Columbia University, graduating at the top of his class. Michael worked as an architect in New York City before moving to Los Angeles. Sparked by the change of locale, a visit to the desert, and his growing dissatisfaction with the architectural industry, he sought a way to merge his interests in architecture and history with his love of fantasy. By day he worked as an architect, but by night he wrote and researched an epic fantasy novel inspired by the history of ancient Egypt and the tragic story of King Lear. After working this way for several years, he shut down his successful architecture practice and resolved to write full time. He now lives and writes in Los Angeles with his wife and daughter.

You can find Michael on twitter @mjohnstonauthor

  
 You can purchase Soleri at the following Retailers:
        
(10) Winners will receive a Signed Signed ARC Copy of Soleri by Michael Johnston
Giveaway is open to International. | Must be 13+ to Enter