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Review: 1066 What Fates Impose by G.K Holloway

20 June 2017

Synopsis


England is in crisis. King Edward has no heir and promises never to produce one. There are no obvious successors available to replace him, but quite a few claimants are eager to take the crown. While power struggles break out between the various factions at court, enemies abroad plot to make England their own. There are raids across the borders with Wales and Scotland. Harold Godwinson, Earl of Wessex, is seen by many as the one man who can bring stability to the kingdom. He has powerful friends and two women who love him, but he has enemies who will stop at nothing to gain power. As 1066 begins, England heads for an uncertain future. It seems even the heavens are against Harold. Intelligent and courageous, can Harold forge his own destiny - or does he have to bow to what fates impose?

Review

I am a big fan of historical fiction and this book did not disappoint.  Having recently read a collection of novels that pre-date this novel's period I was very excited to read the next evolution of history.  This is a period that has not been overly exploited from a historical fiction perspective.  This novel captured it well, providing detailed insight in to alliances and deceptions as each family vie'd for the English throne.  Well written in a prose that takes the reader through a journey of a couple of years culminating in the battle of Hastings.

Characters were well developed and described in vivid detail that provided sufficient context without over-developing the characters but also ensured that the reader knew enough about each character to understand their involvement in each major event described.  G.K. was able to hold the readers imagination whilst delivering a detailed historical account of the period, no mean feat and a task he accomplished with aplomb. 

A great read from a great author, highly recommended to fans of this genre and this period.



Audiobook Review: Solitude by Dean M. Cole

19 June 2017

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About the Audiobook

Author: Dean M. Cole
Narrator: R.C. Bray, Julia Whelan
Length: 8 hours 50 minutes
Publisher: CANDTOR Press⎮2017
Genre: Science Fiction
Release date: April 3, 2017
Synopsis: Earth's last man discovers that the last woman is stranded alone aboard the International Space Station. If you like action-packed novels, you'll love the electrifying action in this apocalyptic thriller.
Can humanity's last two unite?
Separated by the gulf of space, the last man and woman of the human race struggle against astronomical odds to survive and unite.
Army Aviator Vaughn Singleton is a highly intelligent, lazy man. After a last-ditch effort to reignite his failing military career ends horribly, Vaughn becomes the only human left on Earth.
Stranded alone on the International Space Station, Commander Angela Brown watches an odd wave of light sweep across the planet. Over the next weeks and then months, Angela struggles to contact someone on the surface, but as she fights to survive aboard a deteriorating space station, the commander glimpses the dark underpinnings of humanity's demise.
After months alone, Vaughn discovers there is another. Racing against time, he must cross a land ravaged by the consequences of humankind's sudden departure.
Can Vaughn find a path to space and back? Can Angela - the only person with clues to the mystery behind humanity's disappearance - survive until he does?



Buy on AudibleAmazon


Review


I'm going to start off with a bit of a rant about the promo for this book.  It says its like I am Legend but I have to disagree on one major point....There are no weird Zombies in this book and I think that if Zombies aren't your thing then it might put you off! But please don't let it! This author has such an incredible imagination and it would be a travesty to miss out on Solitude! 

The author doesn't waste time with chapter on chapter of scene building he very quickly lets you know everything you need to know about the characters and gets straight into the action!  The authors style is effortless and he easily puts you into the characters frame of reference.

This book is so much more than Sci-Fi you've got mystery, intrigue and survival to! So if you aren't a die hard Sci-Fi fan don't be put off this page turner is good for you to!

When it comes to the narration R.C Bray is fantastic as always! He always puts a strong performance into his work and is a pleasure to listen to! Julia Whelan also offers an amazing performance and the reading of alternating chapters flowed really well.  My only critique is that Julia's chapters were louder than R.C Brays and it did disrupt the smooth transition between chapters.

About the Author: Dean M. Cole

Author, world traveler, and combat pilot turned commercial helicopter pilot Dean M. Cole writes from locales as remote as Equatorial Guinea and as romantic as Paris's Champs-Elysées with his trusty sidekick and beautiful wife, Donna. A combat veteran, he flew Apache Attack Helicopters in the US Army's First Cavalry Division.

License to kill revoked by the government, he traded in his attack helicopter for one of the transport ilk. When not weaving tales of alien apocalypse and redemption, he spends his days flying terrestrial aliens in IFOs (Identified Flying Objects) known as helicopters. No longer authorized to dispatch aliens he settles for dropping them off at oil rigs around the globe.

On the six months of time off his paying job affords, author, biker, and fellow Sci-Fi geek Dean M. Cole travels with his wife, builds airplanes and custom choppers, and writes his next tale of the apocalypse.
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About the Narrator: R.C. Bray

From an early age Audie, Earphones, and SOVAS Voice Arts Award-winning audiobook narrator R.C. Bray despised reading. Truly hated it with a passion.

And audiobooks? Even worse. Those were for people too lazy to read (not to be confused with those like himself who didn’t want to read to begin with).

R.C. eventually got older and wiser (he was always good-looking) and eschewing his capricious convictions fell head-over-heels with reading. Not just to learn words like “eschew” and “capricious” so he could use them in a bio line, but because someone was actually going to give him money to do it.

Note: R.C.’s gorgeous wife and three beautiful children begged him not to make this his official bio. Clearly he misunderstood
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About the Narrator: Julia Whelan

Julia Whelan is an actor, writer, and audiobook narrator. She is perhaps most well known for her acting work on ABC’s Once and Again and her award-winning narration of over 200 audiobooks (including Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl). Her debut novel is forthcoming.

After a healthy career as a child actor, Whelan attended Middlebury College and Oxford University, graduating with a degree in English and Creative Writing.
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I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Dean M. Cole. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.

Guest Post: Terrence by Alice Rachel

18 June 2017


Terrence: A Short Story
Alice Rachel
(Under Ground, #0.8)
Publication date: May 15th 2017
Genres: Dystopian, New Adult, Romance
Bullying is nothing new to Terrence Young. The teasing and harassment are constant. His family is less than understanding as well. To them, Terrence chose to be gay and complicate their lives. Their little rejections sting and cut him deeply.
But when the Deviance Act is passed, Terrence’s life takes a turn for the worse overnight. Under the new law, a mere look, a simple touch, or a small kiss in public could mean death. Terrence attempts to hide his orientation to survive. That is until a gang attacks him in a bar and Chase Martinez interferes.
Chase is gorgeous, kind-hearted, and he’s a rebel in the Underground—all qualities that attract Terrence so much there is no stopping the fall. Loving Chase might be dangerous, but Terrence is done living in fear and letting others dictate what is right for him.
*The author pledges to donate 100% of sales revenue from “Terrence: A Short Story” to The Ally Coalition

Terrence's Story is part of my YA Dystopian Romance series UNDER GROUND—a series in which New York State has seceded from the rest of the United States. In the series, women have no rights: They can't vote, they can't walk the streets on their own, they are forced into marriages settled by their parents to benefit their families. It's a Victorian sort of world, though it's set in the future. That world also revolves around a number of laws that were passed to oppress the lower class and the LGBT community. Because Terrence is both lower class and gay, those laws affect his life tremendously.

In Terrence's story, one of the new laws is called the Deviance Act. That law allows New York State to have all LGBT people executed on sight without trial. Sadly, this event was inspired by events that have happened in our past or are still happening in our world today.

It was also essential for me to focus more on my LGBT characters because when Terrence's book cover was revealed, I was sad to realize that, though many people claim to want diversity in novels, some of them don't want sexual diversity. And it is my job, as a writer, to show them that diversity does in fact include diversity of ethnicity, culture, and orientation.
LGBT people do not choose their orientation or gender. They are who they are, and refusing for them to have a voice in literature implies denying them the right to be represented. It implies only wanting diversity if that "diversity" fits certain standards or beliefs.
I find it highly offensive that anyone would read a series as long as the characters are straight and that they would start shunning those very same characters as soon as it is revealed that those characters are, in fact, not straight.
And I will always strive to make my series as diverse as possible in every possible way—be it ethnically, culturally, or sexually.
I do not write to please people, I write to challenge them and make them think outside the box that society has been confining them in, and that is the inspiration behind my entire series. 

My goal is always to raise awareness to certain issues that matter to me. I wanted to write books that would make my readers think, books that would open their minds and make them want to do their own research. The first books focused more on women's rights, abuse, rape culture, virgin shaming, slut shaming, and many other things that prevent women from thriving in society.
But recently, the series has shifted a bit more toward LGBT rights. Many characters in the series are gay or bi, and they are all affected by this new law in the books.

The interesting thing is that you never know if your books will do what you had originally intended. And in Terrence's case, it did.
I did a read-along of the story recently, and it meant so much to me to realize that Terrence could teach my readers something new, something they had never heard of before or weren't even aware of.

You see, Terrence's lover, Chase, is bisexual, and Terrence's story discusses biphobia and bierasure, in the sense that Terrence has trouble accepting his boyfriend's orientation.
During the read-along, it was clear that many people had never heard of biphobia or bierasure. And it meant the world to me that I was able to discuss those two issues with my readers as well as expose a problem that is not only a concern in the straight community, but also in the LGBT community. Many readers were shocked to learn that bisexuals are often rejected by members of both communities (yes, including by members of the LGBT community), and that bisexuals are constantly told that their orientation simply does not exist, or they are forced to claim to be fully straight or fully gay when, in all reality, they do not fit in either of those categories.

Terrence's story also fights many other stereotypes, from the belief that gay men are promiscuous and only interested in sexual affairs, to the thought that being gay equals a lack of masculinity, to the false belief that gay men choose their orientation.

So I guess I would say that the inspiration behind the story was a desire to open my readers' minds to new thoughts and to expose the false beliefs that have been ingrained in us by society.

Thank you for having me on your blog and for being part of Terrence's blog tour. :-)


Author Bio:
Alice Rachel is the author of the YA Forbidden Romance/ Dystopian Romance Series "Under Ground."
Her time is divided between teaching French, writing, reading, drawing, and spending time with her hubby and guinea pigs.
Alice loves talking to readers, so send her a message...

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Review: Ahe'ey by Jamie Le Fay

8 June 2017

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Title: Ahe’ey
Author: Jamie Le Fay
Genre: Epic Fantasy
Morgan is a dreamer, change maker and art lover. She is a feisty, slightly preachy, romantic feminist full of contradictions and insecurities. Morgan uncovers a world where women have the power, and where magic is no longer just a figment of her wild imagination. Sounds like a dream, but it may, in fact, turn into a nightmare. 


The world of the Ahe'ey challenges and subverts her views about gender, genes, and nature versus nurture.

The strong and uninvited chemistry between her and the dashing Gabriel makes matters even more complicated. His stunning looks keep short-circuiting her rational mind. 


Review

This book is fantastic!

There is a little bit of everything in this novel. Love, Loss and a good fight for justice
The Author is a skilled story teller and has an amazing imagination!

Although a fantasy novel it is weirdly relevant to the world today and definitely gets you thinking the author has cleverly weaved in a real life relevance to her story which only adds to its gravitas

A political spin on a fantasy world is how I'd describe this book and I can't wait to read more from this author

The author

Editorial Reviews


"In this romantic tale, a champion of women's empowerment stumbles on a hidden--and seemingly perfect--society. A bracing mix of emotionally and intellectually honest fantasy." - Kirkus Reviews

"A compelling and creative work of paranormal romance. Le Fey takes her characters to places seldomly seen in fantasy fiction that readers will find empowering and prescient. Ahe'ey is a fairly polarizing book. As an example of feminist fantasy fiction, you won’t find much better than this. Ahe’ey is an impressively thought-out story, with many original touches and a fairy-like romance that will deeply satisfy readers of the genre." Self-Publishing Review, ★★★★ 

"This book is a thoughtful look at empowerment for women. At the same time, it's a rollicking trip into a fantasy world complete with dragons, love and strength, and ideas that really get you thinking. This book is highly recommended for all ages." - HUGEOrange

"They're flawed, real, and honest characters that can be easily related to. Ahe'ey is the kind of novel society needs to read, to create inspiration and to make people think. Ahe'ey is daring, complex, and honest. A must-read novel that tackles heavy and real topics with a mix of serious and humorous, charm and tragedy." - Reader's Favorite - ★★★★★ 

"Ahe'ey contains a richly imagined world that raises complicated and timely questions about our own. Jamie Le Fay's Ahe'ey is an action-packed love story that puts forth a nuanced vision of gender stereotypes, body politics, and the dark side of seeking perfection." - Foreword Clarion - ★★★★


Author Bio


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Jamie Le Fay is the author of Ahe'ey. She was born in Europe and spent her early adult years traveling around the world working in information technology and focusing on her passion: empowering women and girls. Jamie lives in Sydney, Australia where she is involved in a variety of initiatives that hope to contribute to the safety, well-being and education of girls globally. Jamie is an accomplished writer and speaker that focuses mainly on topics related to girlhood, feminism, gender equality, and the misrepresentation of minorities in media and marketing.

Disclosure: The Pursuit Of Bookiness received a copy of the book free of charge in return for an honest review. All opinions are our own

Review: The Visitor by Brent Ayscough

7 June 2017







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Title: The Visitor

Author: Brent Ayscough
Genre: Fantasy
Tasked by the Federation of Planets to determine if Earthlings present a threat as they venture into space, Tak, an alien anthropologist, leaves her starship orbiting Earth and takes a shuttle to Kansas. Intending to study humans in the United States—as she has learned no Earth language but English—she is detected while descending through the atmosphere and only evades capture by fleeing to Europe, where she lands in Poland. There, she meets an international arms merchant, Baron Von Limbach, who becomes her guide. She studies “typical” human behavior by accompanying the baron as he fulfills his latest assignment—to get the Dalai Lama back into Tibet. His method of halting the communist takeover of Tibet is to create a race-specific
Ebola that will only attack Han Chinese, giving Tak a prime example of how barbaric humans can be. However, the CIA and US military are aware of Tak’s presence on Earth and are determined to capture her. And if she is unable to complete her mission and return to her starship—her captain will destroy every living thing on Earth.
Review
A gripping read that will give you shivers about the plausible thought of a race specific act of germ warfare!
You can tell from the writing that the author has dome so serious research into his topic despite this being a work of fiction as the amount of detail he has put into the description of the development of this species specific Ebola strain is crazy!
I thoroughly enjoyed this read and if you are a lover of Sci-Fi then like me you'll be through this book in one sitting! The author is amazing at building his story and the plot line could almost be real life! A cautionary tale of our future perhaps!!

Amazon / Goodreads 
Author Bio
C:\Users\Majanka\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\INetCache\Content.Word\Ace best on Indian.jpgBrent Ayscough or Ace, as he is known to friends, retired from the practice of law and lives in a house overlooking the sea in Southern California. He has always loved machines, from airplanes to motorcycles, structural design, and other interests. He has enjoyed the acquaintance of diverse and interesting people, and is widely traveled. Bits and pieces of characters he has known, places he has been, seasoned with the spice of his imagination, help him create unusual stories and characters. Extensive collaboration with experts and sources, hopefully, make his stories credible and interesting.









Audio Book Review: The Sparks by Kyle Prue

21 May 2017

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About the Audiobook

Author: Kyle Prue
Narrator: Jon Eric Preston
Length: 9 hours 14 minutes
Publisher: Cartwright Publishing⎮2017
Genre: Epic Fantasy
Series: Feud Trilogy, Book One
Release date: Feb. 24, 2017
Synopsis: Honor does not bend. A will of iron does not break. Victory lies within the ashes.

The Vapros, the Taurlum, and the Celerius: three dynasties bound by an ancient promise, and given superhuman abilities to protect the city of Altryon from the dangerous world beyond its walls. The Vapros have the ability to teleport and turn their enemies to ash, the Celerius have super speed and the ability to heal from any wound, the Taurlum have skin like steel and godlike strength. Centuries of petty infighting have turned the families against each other, resulting in a secret war. A powerful emperor now rules over all, as the families have weakened by massive casualties.
Sixteen-year-old Neil Vapros desperately wants to become an assassin, to please his hyper critical father. After failing his first mission, Neil learns that a sinister new force has awakened. This mysterious new power threatens to shatter the established order and threaten the lives of everyone in Altryon - regardless of their family name or allegiance.

Buy on AudibleAmazon

Review


This story is a great read about greed, deception and survival! I loved how the author crafted the three families and built each one up whilst interweaving them together so that you did not get massive chunks of story just scene setting. It starts with action right from the first page and continues without

The premise is fantastic and so clever! It also I think has hidden morals around how we build walls and isolate ourselves from the potential scary world around us but without being preachy! It's a real come good story of these teens coming together to question the feud and work together!

The narration was spot on the gravitas and cadence of Jon Eric Preston suited the story perfectly and I found when he was playing characters his acting skills were on point to unlike some that can be really cringy! I think the narrators voice really adds a richness to what already is a fantastic story and i thoroughly recommend it.




About the Author: Kyle Prue


Kyle Prue is an award winning author, actor and comedian. Kyle wrote The Sparks: Book 1 of the Feud Trilogy when he was just 16 years old. Kyle has spent the past year on a national book tour visiting over 80 middle and high schools and meeting over 60,000 students. Kyle is now a freshman at the University of Michigan, studying acting and creative writing. He still visits schools and is a keynote speaker for conferences.

Kyle is the founder of Sparking Literacy, a non-profit dedicated to lowering the high school dropout rate by inspiring teens to read, write and follow their dreams.  The Sparks has won numerous national awards including Best YA Fiction awards from: The Florida Authors and Publisher’s Association, the Florida Book Festival, New England Book Festival, Midwest Book Festival, Southern California Book Festival, and the International London Book Festival. Kyle also won an International Moonbeam Award and IndieFab Award for Best Young Author.
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About the Narrator: Jon Eric Preston

Jon Eric Preston received his Theatre degree from Florida State University after returning from the London program. He earned top honors narrating in the Dramatic Interpretation category on the Speech and Debate team, and performed professionally in Children’s Theatre companies and did National Tours of A Christmas Carol, Twelfth Night, and Othello.

As a SAG BookPAL and a father reading to his two boys for more than 12 years, moving into the booth to record audiobooks was a natural and joy filled progression.
He is thrilled to be narrating and giving voice to the characters for Kyle Prue’s Feud Trilogy.
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Blitz: Lady Of Sherwood by Molly Bilinski

20 May 2017





Lady of Sherwood
Molly Bilinski
(Outlaws of Sherwood #1)
Published by: Clean Teen Publishing
Publication date: April 24th 2017
Genres: Fairy Tales, Fantasy, Young Adult
Robin of Lockesly was neither the son her father wanted, nor the daughter her mother expected. When she refuses an arranged marriage to a harsh and cruel knight, the deadly events that follow change her destiny forever.
After a night of tragedy, Robin and the few remaining survivors flee to Nottingham. With a newfound anonymity, they start to live different lives. There, she and her band make mischief, robbing from the rich and giving to the poor. But charity isn’t the only thing she wants–she wants revenge.
As the sheriff draws his net closer, Robin’s choices begin to haunt her. She’ll have to choose between what’s lawful and what her conscience believes is right–all while staying one step ahead of the hangman.
Lady of Sherwood is a unique young adult retelling of the beloved Robin Hood legend. Filled with action and romance, this new series follows a teenage heroine through her fantastic, yet dangerous adventures.
EXCERPT:
Other girls—some of the youngest ones from the kitchen—came from the brush. Smoke clung to them like a shroud, and tears had run in rivers down soot-stained cheeks. Ginny, the youngest at six, ran to Jemma and attached herself like a limpet to the older girl’s legs.
“Where is everyone else?” Robin asked, glancing between them and then back at the flaming manor. “Where is—where’s—” Her face heated even as the rest of her body grew chilled, and she stuffed her first in her mouth to muffle her scream.
“We are the only ones.”
Robin looked up at Kitty, surprised to find herself on her knees in the damp grass. She curled her shaking fingers into fists, and then rested them on her thighs. “How—what happened?”
“That man,” the girl went on, absently twisting her skirt in her hands. “The one who’d been courting you… he came for you in the night. When he couldn’t find you, he gathered everyone in the great hall.”
“Except you lot?” Jemma inquired.
“He was hurting her.” Kitty’s eyes took on a glossy quality. “He had Maggie by the hair, and he was hurting her. She had Ginny behind her, protecting her. I—I hit him over the head with a candle stand.”
“We went through the old tunnel,” another voice piped up. Maggie slipped her hand into Kitty’s. “Me and Kitty and Ginny.”
“And my—my mother?” Robin took a deep, shuddering breath.
“She kept her secret. We heard ‘im, shouting. He wanted to know where you was.” Ginny, this time. She wandered away from Jemma, and Robin opened her arms for her to nestle into. She’d helped Jemma look after the younger servants on the sly for years. Whether they’d been orphaned at birth or left to the streets, Jemma had brought them each back to the manor, and she’d given them a home and a hope the rest of the world didn’t offer. “She didn’t tell, Robin. She didn’t tell him where you was.”
“I heard Charlotte say you were gone,” Maggie said quietly. “She’d gone to your mother’s chambers to tell her. Miss Jemma was gone, too, and so was your bow.” She shrugged, a delicate lift of her shoulders. “We all thought you had gone to the field.”
“And she said nothing?” Robin’s heart beat hard against her ribcage.
“Lady was very brave,” Ginny murmured.
“She was,” Robin agreed. “Like you are. You all.” She looked at each of the other girls, who stared back, clearly waiting.
It hit her then—they were waiting for her. With the only survivors of the manor in front of her, and her mother dead—God rest her soul, God hold them all in His hand—it occurred to her in that moment. She was the Lady of Lockesly.

Author Bio:
Molly is a 2013 graduate of William Smith College with a bachelors in chemistry. She puts her science powers to use by day and is a novelist by night (and weekend...and any five minutes she can find). When she's not writing or working, she's scoping out coffee shops, exploring her new city (Buffalo, NY), taking day trips to Canada, and putting together puzzles.



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