Thursday, October 2, 2014

When life's kicking your butt...how about a theme song? [10]


My friend Robyn from robgirlbooks tasked us with coming up with a theme song each month, and I love it! Music is a VERY big part of my life. Jennifer @ Donnie Darko Girl inspired this month's theme song challenge because the girl absolutely loves the Austin City Limits Music Festival. So check out the list and go nuts!

Also, this month is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. I hope you all know what you're worth!

I chose two this month:




What are your choices this month??

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Review: Hunt for the Star (The Eldon Archives #1) by Dane Richter


Published: February 16th 2013
Genre: Fantasy
Format: ebook
Source: provided for honest review
Goodreads Summary

Edoria is at war. Artos Hestrom retreats back to his home town of Corsin where he is given the task of retrieving a powerful crystal called the Eldon Star. The ageing Artos uses lies and deceit to procure people to help him on the journey and the plight of a half-man, half-elf called Chet, provides the perfect cover. Artos' nephew, Ethan, freely volunteers to accompany him without knowing his true motives, but Ethan's death has been foreseen in a vision. Knowing that Ethan would certainly die if he continues on the journey, Artos must choose between the fate of his family and the fate of the world.

Standing in his way is the evil Sorcerer, Ruehl, who has waged war in Edoria with his blood-thirsty hordes of Kròkos. Ruehl uses his minions to relentlessly scour the land for the crystal. Betrayals, challenges and loss set up a final confrontation with the evil Sorcerer where there can be only one victor.

"'Reassuring? People are dead and you worry about how the town will react? I can't believe you just said that!' Ethan spat, raising his voice to a threatening level, and at the same time hardly believing he had taken that tone with his father."


The Good

I really had an easy time getting into this book. It had a familiar feel to it in that it felt like a Forgotten realm book even though it has nothing to do with Forgotten Realms. Not only did I enjoy the time focused on the main character but I also considered the time spent developing the supporting characters to be just as entertaining. Like most Fantasy Parties they end up having to split up into at least two groups, and I can honestly say I never found myself just wanting to get back to one particular group. The fights are bloody and the creatures are great. I really like the Shenaar (snakepeople).


The Bad

I don't really have any complaints. This really was a solid fantasy novel. I know that sounds like i should maybe rank it higher with that being the case but this feels right.


The Romance

There is no romance worth mentioning in this installment but, I do believe ground work has been set for romance in the next book.

Conclusion

Overall this was a really fun Fantasy novel. If you enjoy Forgotten realm novels, you'll enjoy this one. The characters are great, the fights are action packed and the monsters are plentiful. I'll definitely be ready for book 2 when it comes out.





Excerpts

Artos nodded and looked to the Oocha. 'Ko-jah, old friend, I was looking forward to your visit and showing you my lands as you once showed me yours. But, as it turns out, foes have extended their reach upon our homes and we must protect them.'
'Oocha's prefer a fight rather than looking at countryside. I will kill people for you.
'That is all I ask,' said Artos. 'But don't kill anyone unless I tell you to.


Ethan bit his lip,'I was told yesterday that this was a dangerous place, but no one else heard it, so I didn't give it any more thought.' He looked down at his damaged hand. He could feel the judging eyes upon him,' and then I heard it again, just now, saying I told you so.'


'Your new name is Mac!' The horse bent its ears back in defiance. Artos stopped smiling. 'I don't care if you don't like it. I like it, and that's all that matters, Mac!'He kicked the horse but the horse would not move. 'When I get to Fohinx I'm gonna ride you straight into a cloud of Krokos arrows.'The horse reluctantly trotted forward. 'I knew you were a smart horse, Mac.'

Monday, September 29, 2014

Blog Tour Excerpt and Giveaway: The Accidental Apprentice by Anika Arrington

Welcome to my stop on The Accidental Apprentice by Anika Arrington Blog Tour! There is an excerpt as well as a giveaway. Enjoy!
 The Accidental Apprentice by Anika Arrington
The Accidental Apprentice by Anika Arrington
The Accidental Apprentice by Anika Arrington

Excerpt #2:

“What did you take, boy?” I tried to keep the laughter out of my voice and sound firm as I had when disciplining unruly pupils at the Academy.
“A s-s-spoon, Master.” The waif’s hands, and likely his knees, shook.
“Master? You afraid of magicians, then?” The boy only nodded. “Then why in the name of Alchemus would you steal a spoon from a noble household?” My curiosity was piqued. No starving orphan from the streets of Havensgate braved danger, perceived and real, for a spoon.
“It’s a fine manor.” The whelp swallowed. “Manors use real silver. I thought no one would miss a spoon, but it would buy Lottie a new blanket and hot food for us both for two days, and there would be plenty of pence to go round after.” Impressed despite myself, I peered at the boy more closely. His coat was tattered, to be sure, but the two remaining buttons were brass. And the buckle on his belt had the look of unpolished silver.
“What’s your name?”
“Two-pence, if it please the Master,” he said, ducking his head in a kind of bow.
“Your real name would please me better.” I gave him my sternest expression.
“Tommy, sir. Tommy Penceworth.” He lowered his head, as though oddly ashamed to have a proper name, and not a bad one at that. There were several Penceworths at the Academy. I searched for any resemblance in Tommy’s features, but between the dirt and rapidly fading light, I couldn’t tell one way or the other.
“Very well, Tommy. You give me back the spoon, and I will pay you two silver farthings.” Surprise splashed over the vagrant’s face, followed immediately by suspicion. I pulled the coins from the green leather pouch at my side. I could have pulled anything from it, but for the moment farthings would do. Tommy pulled the pilfered cutlery from a pocket that didn’t look as though it could successfully contain anything, and held it up while extending the other hand expectantly. A simple bit of levitation on my part and the spoon was in my hand, the money in his. He spun and started running up the beach, but I turned him about with the same trick of the wind that had saved his skull only a few minutes before. “If I ever catch you stealing from this household again, Tommy Penceworth, I will turn you over to the butler’s justice.” Tommy swallowed. “Understand?” He nodded and turned to go again, then stopped and glanced back.
“Thank you . . .” he paused, looking at his clenched fist, “for everything.” Then he fled up the beach towards the cold Havensgate streets and Lottie and whoever else was counting on him.
The Accidental Apprentice by Anika Arrington
Find Arrington on the web: Website | Facebook | Twitter

The Accidental Apprentice by Anika Arrington
 a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Sunday Cover Scramble [86]


Let's have some fun! I am going to post covers on here every Sunday that are scrambled up graphically, making it hard to tell what cover it is. I would like your guesses on what cover you think I've posted. I won't answer you until I'm posting the next one to let you know if you are right, allowing others to guess as well. Some will be hard, and others may be easy. Let me know in the comments if you'd like some more hints and I'll offer some more if no one guesses it correctly.


I'm changing up the format a little bit! I am going to be pulling covers off the Most Popular Page on Goodreads.






Saturday, September 27, 2014

Who Said it? Hunger Games Version


#1 

"May the odds be ever in your favor!"

#2

"You love me, real or not real?"

#3

"It takes ten times as long to put yourself back together as it does to fall apart"

#4

"You’ve got about as much charm as a dead slug."

#5

"I always channel my emotions into my work. That way I don't hurt anyone but myself" 

#6

"You know, its to bad you couldn't help your little friend. That little girl. What was her name again? Rue?"

#7

"Quack!" 

#8

Katniss will choose whoever she feels she cannot live without.



Tell me your guesses in the comments below :D

Friday, September 26, 2014

Review: Innocent Assassins by Pema Donyo


Published: June 24, 2014, Astraea Press
Genre: Mystery | Crime | YA | Contemporary Thriller | Action
Format: ebook (e-pub)
Source: provided for honest review

Goodreads Summary

There are three rules to staying an assassin at the corporation of Covert Operatives: (1) your parents must be deceased, (2) your contracts must remain confidential, and (3) you must be under the age of eighteen.

After a murder mission goes awry a month before her eighteenth birthday, Covert Operatives assassin Jane Lu finds herself caught by the federal government and forced to spy for the CIA while remaining in Covert Operatives. Once her spying mission is over she will be allowed to live a civilian life without facing criminal consequences, a life she's only dreamed of having.

As Jane leaks information to the CIA, she uncovers secrets with enough power to both destroy Covert Operatives and her own boyfriend, Adrian King, who's next in line to be CEO of the company. When her identity as a double agent for the CIA is discovered within Covert Operatives, she must decide where her allegiance, and her heart, truly lies.


The Good

I liked everything about the book, right from the cover to the last page of the book. I'm more than happy that I got to read this one. What stands out in the book is the concept. CO or Covert Operatives is an organization that takes in orphans and trains them right from the age of 5 to become assassins. These assassins are given contracts to be completed, in other words, they are trained to kill people for CO's clientele. These assassins love CO and think of it and their co-assassins as their family. They worship CO and it's CEO and will do anything to protect them from the police and the CIA.

Jane Lu, the main protagonist, finds herself in a dicey situation and cuts a deal with the CIA when she realizes that CO is not a savior for orphans but a blood-hungry and money-making machine, that killed her parents. Now she is on the good side fighting against the CO, destroying it slowly from the inside.

What makes all this interesting is that her love, Adrian King, is the would-be CEO of the CO, so destroying CO means destroying her love, Adrian.

Well, after this, I don't think anything else is required to piqué one's curiosity to read this book. Trust me, it's an excellent book with a strong concept and equally strong characterization. The ending of this book couldn't have been any better.

The Bad

The on-off relationship of Jane and Adrian was a bit of a turn-off, so was the silly confusing talks between Jane and Emma. Most of the time it felt more like a high-school affair rather than an affair of two assassins. Emma constantly tried to convince Jane to leave Adrian for no particular reasons, which after two useless times started to irritate me!

The Romance

The romance is the main theme of the book, as whatever Lu did was either 'for Adrian' or 'to Adrian' or 'against Adrian'! Though they had an unbreakable bond of love, they seemed to break-up at random, I mean Jane broke-up randomly all the f*****g time! They'll start arguing and all of a sudden she'll say, this isn't working and they'll break-up. I mean come on, give the guy a chance Miss Lu. So much for romance!


Conclusion

It's an excellent book with a strong concept and equally strong characterization. Jane Lu is the perfect protagonist (despite her high-school behavior at times.) Other than the high-school romance stuff, this book is pretty good. I'd recommend this book to all the YA readers.




Did you enjoy this review? Check out Heena's other reviews at The Reading Bud

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Harry Potter Moment of the Week [34]


This is a meme hosted by Uncorked Thoughts.The aim of this meme is to share with fellow bloggers a character, spell, chapter, object or quote from the books/ films/ J. K. Rowling herself or anything Potter related! She is picking a topic within HP for us to focus on each week and then if anyone wants to take part feel free! All she asks is to link back to her blog :). There is now a full list of the topics to come here.

       Most Cringe-Inducing Scene in the Series



Well, Ron having a girlfriend that calls him Won-Won made me cringe, for sure. There was also the dreaded detention with Professor Umbridge. Finding out about Ron's pet rat was shiver-worthy revulsion, but I'll have to go with the moment that made me cringe at first and then fill with rage: McGongall is sucker-hit with four stunning spells.




Umbridge wants Hagrid out of her hair so she takes a team of wizards down to kick him out while the students are doing their astronomy O.W.L.s. Professor McGonagall intervenes on behalf of her friend, and the group of Aurors hits her in the chest with no less than four stunning spells while she doesn't even have a wand in her hand. She's carted off to the hospital wing and not heard from in some time. This cowardice caused not only the characters in the book to cringe, but me as well. Then, I was begging for Umbridge to get what she deserved.

What is the most cringe-inducing scene for you in the series?