25 April 2015

ARC Review: Summoner - The Novice

The Novice - Summoner #1
by Taran Matharu




YA goodness!!!

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What they say: When blacksmith apprentice Fletcher discovers that he has the ability to summon demons from another world, he travels to Adept Military Academy. There the gifted are trained in the art of summoning. Fletcher is put through grueling training as a battlemage to fight in the Hominum Empire’s war against orcs. He must tread carefully while training alongside children of powerful nobles. The power hungry, those seeking alliances, and the fear of betrayal surround him. Fletcher finds himself caught in the middle of powerful forces, with only his demon Ignatius for help.


As the pieces on the board maneuver for supremacy, Fletcher must decide where his loyalties lie. The fate of an empire is in his hands. The Novice is the first in a trilogy about Fletcher, his demon Ignatius, and the war against the Orcs. 


Coming by 5th May by Hodder Children's/Hachette Children's - ISBN: 9781444923971


Author & Book Links:

Wattpad * Twitter * Goodreads 

Pre-order:

Amazon US * Amazon UK


I received a copy from the publisher (via NetGalley) in exchange for an honest review.


What I say: Wow! I loved The Novice and it made a fab change to read about a young male character written by a guy. I didn't read the book when it started on wattpad and so I approached the series a complete novice (like what I did there?), but I thoroughly enjoyed every page and am looking forward to seeing what happen next. 

I don't often like to describe one book as being like another or something similar, but with The Novice if you take elements of Harry Potter, The Hunger Games, Throne of Glass, Game of Thrones and merge it with Pokemon (yes, Pokemon) then you're still nowhere near, but are on the right track!


Fletcher lives in a strange kind of fantasy world where orcs, elves, dwarfs and demons exist. Humans have different relationships with these creatures ranging from hostile to sort of friendly, to outright enemies. Summoners have the ability to summon demons to fight the evil orcs. Fletcher finds himself training with other trainees at a special academy which reminded me of an uber competitive version of Hogwarts.


I really liked Fletcher because he wasn't willing to accept the class and race system for what it was. He challenges the accepted norm and looks out for everybody. He is impatient but isn't mean or nasty, and most importantly, he's extremely loyal.

I appreciated that The Novice was all about action and the trainees learning their craft, rather than some big love triangle. The secondary characters work well (although I did get a little confused with a couple of their names being similar at times). I had my suspicions about the ending (don't worry NO SPOILERS here) and although I did turn about to be right about one big event, it didn't in any way lessen my enjoyment of the book and I cannot wait to see what happens next after that cliffy!

4 - 4.5 Stars in my Sky!






24 April 2015

Cover Reveal: Fury

FURY, the much anticipated third standalone of The Seven Deadly Series by Fisher Amelie, releases May 4th 2015! 

To wet our appetites Fisher has released another teaser/excerpt (which you can read below).

What do you think of the cover?!
 

Fury


EXCERPT from FURY, Coming May 4, 2015:

We start where we left off from Fisher’s last excerpt. If you’d like to read it, you can go here!


FURY - Excerpt Two:

Ethan?” she asked. “Is that you?

“Hello, Finley,” I answered.

“How are you?” she asked, somehow devoid of the pity I’d often heard in so many greetings since Cricket. I was grateful to her for this.

“I’m fine,” I slurred, lifting my head a bit to meet her eyes.

A grin met her lips. “You were always a terrible liar.” Her smile fell a little. “What are you doing here?”

“I’m drinking.”

She narrowed her eyes. “You hate drinking.”

“I learned to love it,” I said, downing the remaining contents of my glass, letting it burn.

She looked me up and down, making me feel self-conscious. “But apparently it doesn’t love you.”

“Thanks,” I snorted, acting like I didn’t care. But I did.

“You look terrible,” she said, ignoring me. “Are you even eating?”

“I’m consuming the daily recommended calorie intake,” I hedged.

“Ah,” she answered, examining my empty glass.

I shook my head and signaled to Vi for another.

Finley narrowed her eyes once more. “Can I get a basket of chicken tenders too, Vi?” she added.

“Sure thing,” she said, ringing up Finley’s food before grabbing the bottle of Jack and filling me to the top.

Finley examined my glass but didn’t say a word.

“What?” I asked, feeling defensive.

“Nothing,” she answered, looking at her hands.

“Judging me?”

“Not at all,” she said sincerely and looked me dead in the eye.

This look froze me, and the glass slipped from my fingers and back onto the bar top, spilling a little from the rim.

“I’ve done that very thing,” she said, gesturing toward my glass.

“Drink ’til you’re numb?”

“No,” she said, “succumb to a vice in order to forget.”

I leaned forward, stunned by this admission, and my eyes found hers. “What, Finley?”

She hesitated, started to open her mouth, but someone called her name and she turned around. It was an ex-classmate of ours, couldn’t remember her name, the one she’d been dancing with, and I found myself feeling anxious all of a sudden. I hadn’t felt anxious in a long time. Hadn’t felt anything, really, other than severe pain and shame, in a very long time. Huh.

“Finley, Chris is gonna give me a ride back home. You cool?” the girl asked, eyeing me. She knew. The whole town knew about my tumble down the rabbit hole.

“Yeah, Holly Raye. I’ll see you tomorrow,” she answered, her brows scrunched in confusion.

Finley was surprised by Holly Raye’s apparent worry which I found odd.

“Okay,” Holly Raye said, kissing Finley’s cheek.

Chris was waiting by the door for her, and we both watched them leave, afraid to speak, our earlier moment gone.

Vi walked up with Finley’s chicken tenders and set them in front of her. Her fingers found one but lifted up quickly with a tiny gasp.

“Hot,” she whispered, resting her fingers against the side of her water glass.

She let them cool for a few moments and we sat in awkward silence. I wasn’t sure what she was still doing there. I didn’t have any clue why she had even started to talk to me either. I mean, I knew in high school she’d had a crush on me, but I figured it was long gone. She used to stare at me a little doe eyed, and I had always done my best to be kind to her but not too kind. I’d considered her a friend but nothing more, even if I did take solace in my conversations with her. I’d never admitted that out loud to anyone then, though, not that I was ashamed or anything. It’s just, I was in love with Cricket.

The ache in my chest burned deep, a restless reminder of all I’d lost. And suddenly I felt guilty for finding Finley attractive even when I thought she was a stranger. Even after Cricket left me for Spencer.

“You should probably leave,” I told her.

She looked at me like I was crazy. “I’ll do whatever I want,” she said, sitting taller, pitching me that confident Finley attitude I remembered from high school.

“Whatever,” I said, then called out to Vi for another round, which she served up quickly.

Finley tore apart a few tenders then handed me half of one.

“Uh, no,” I said, downing my glass.

“Uh, yes,” she mocked, shoving the piece in my face.

“Stop,” I said, swiping it away.

“Eat, damn it,” she said.

I looked at her and the expression on her face told me she wouldn’t quit, so I roughly took it from her and took a large bite. She bit into her own piece, a smug look on her face. She practically hand fed me every piece in the damn basket, but I didn’t care. I knew what she was doing, but it wouldn’t work because the liquor resting in my belly was too substantial to be worked against.

“What have you done with your summer?” she asked me.

“This,” I said, gesturing to my glass.

“What the hell, Ethan?”

“What, are you my mother?” I asked, immediately regretting those choice of words. I closed my eyes.

Mom. My heart dropped into my throat. Must remedy that.

“Vi,” I said loudly to her at the other end of the bar. “One more.”

Vi walked the length of the bar and filled my glass again, much to Finley’s obvious horror.

“Vi, can I get some mozzarella sticks?” she asked.

“Of course, darlin’.”

Finley smiled at me.

“I’m not eating those,” I told her.

“Oh, you’ll eat them.”

“I won’t.”

“You will.”

“I sure as hell will not, Finley Dyer.”

She leaned closer and my head began to swim. Her signature scent of apples and wild daisies swarmed around me, making my heart race. It’d never bothered me before. It’s the liquor, I told myself.

“You will or I’m taking your ass home right now.”

“You can just kiss that ass, Fin.”

“That’s the Jack talking.”

“No, that’s me. I don’t want to play anymore. I want to be left alone now.”

“You see,” she said, settling her elbows on the bar top, “I think- No, I know you’re lying. Like I said before, you’re a terrible liar. I think you’ve lied so often about wanting to be left alone, though, that you’ve convinced your head it’s the truth, but you can’t convince the heart, Ethan. You know why? Because the heart can’t ever be lied to, and yours beats the loneliest I’ve ever heard.”

I didn’t answer her. Couldn’t answer her.

“What have you done this summer?” I asked, ignoring her spot-on observation.

She played along. “I’ve had a temp job here in Kalispell answering phones for Smith Travel, trying to earn cash for my trip.”

My brows furrowed. “What trip?”

“I’m heading over to Vietnam for a year.”

This shocked me. “What in the world would you go to Vietnam for?”

“Charity work,” she answered, making me laugh.

“Why?” I asked.

“Don’t be an asshole,” she replied.

“No, really, why?”

“I’ve wanted to do this for close to five years now.”

“How come I don’t ever remember you talking about this at school?”

“Ethan,” she said softly, “let’s not pretend we ever really talked in high school deeper than filler conversation.”

This wounded me a little, though I’m not sure why. “What the hell, Finley? You and I were friends.”

Now it was her turn to laugh. “We were most definitely not friends. I may know everything about you and you may know everything about me because we grew up together, but we were not friends. You had a constant bodyguard in Cricket.”

I sat up at the mention of her name. “Don’t ever say her name again,” I gritted.

She raised her hands in concession. “Fine.”

There was a pregnant pause as she let me calm myself down.

“I talked to you a lot in the classes we had,” I offered.

“We talked a lot about the upcoming football games or class assignments. Once or twice, we took the seventy-year-old route and discussed the weather.”

I fought my grin. “Okay, so it was always surface observation, but we were kids.”

“No, Ethan, that’s not what it was.”

“Well, you were in love with me,” I bravely spit. “I couldn’t take it further than just below the shoal.” Thank you, Mr. Daniels.

“Full of yourself, are we?” she asked. “Listen,” she continued, “I had a crush on you in high school. So what? Lots of girls did. But I was, am, a human being. You didn’t have to treat me like some leper. Trust me, Ethan, we all know who you belonged to,” she said.

She stood to leave, but I grabbed her arm. The heated warmth of her skin shot straight to my heart. We looked at one another, wide eyed, our chests panting. I shook my head to recompose myself. “I’m sorry,” I told her, encouraging her to sit back down. “I’m- I know you deserved better.”

She hesitated but sat back in her seat. I stared at her, a little too intently thanks to the Jack. She nodded once and we sat in a comfortable silence as I had five more shots.

The whiskey made my body heavy as hell, the weight of its honeyed venom deadened the ache inside me pleasantly.

I sighed and smiled to myself.

“What’s so funny?” she asked.

I looked up at her though it felt unusually burdensome and leaned toward her. “I’m going to get them back,” I admitted to her.

She narrowed her eyes. “Who, Ethan?”

Them,” I said, bringing a tired finger to my lips. “Don’t tell anyone.”

I fell back into my chair. I brought my fingers to my empty glass and tilted it, balancing it on one finger. She was quiet for a moment.

“Ethan,” she began, whispering, “that’s not like you.”

I smiled. “I’m not who I used to be, Finley.”

“That’s a shame,” she said, “because you used to be wonderful.”

I narrowed my eyes at her. “Do you know what they did to me?”

“She left you for him,” she said matter-of-factly.

I let the glass tip over onto its side at her bluntness. “Exactly. After all I did for her. After all I was to her. She left me for him.”

“She wasn’t meant for you, Ethan.”

My skin burned with hatred at that statement. “No one is meant for anyone, Finley. You choose someone and then you make a commitment.”

She shook her head at me. “You have no idea what you’re talking about.“

“She chose me, convinced me that she was all in, and I was willing to die for her because of it. She convinced me she actually loved me. I thought she loved me.”

“She did love you. I believe she, you both really, would have been somewhat happy if Spencer had never shown up.”

“Exactly.”

“You’re not hearing me. You both would have been somewhat happy. Neither of you would have been utterly happy.”

This infuriated me. “I could have made her happy!” I yelled, earning a few glances from around the bar.

“Yes, you could have made her happy, but not as happy as Spencer does.”

My blood simmered in my veins. “You are cruel,” I bit.

She leaned forward. “I’m being honest with you. Someone has to since you’re not being honest with yourself. I saw them together, Ethan, and she never looked at you like that.”

“Stop,” I said, gritting my teeth. “Stop.”

“Ethan,” she said, resting her hand on mine. I yanked it from her. “Don’t you want the same thing for yourself? Don’t you want forever with someone who burns for you the way you burn for her? You deserve that just as much as she does.”

“Shut up,” I said, bringing my hands to my hair and fisting it at my ears. I didn’t want to hear it.

“Fine,” she said, sitting up. She looked around her and asked Vi for two cups of coffee.

I couldn’t breathe. Finley voiced everything I’d worked so hard to drown out, I’d attempted to numb. I hated her for ruining the struggle to suppress it. I just wanted to pretend. I wanted my hate, wanted it to live close to me. It was the only thing I felt could keep me alive. I couldn’t let her go. I didn’t want her to be loved by anyone but me. I didn’t want to be reminded that someone else really did love her better than I did, that someone else made her happier. Because I had watched them too. I saw what Finley saw, and my God did I hate Spencer Blackwell for it.

I wanted bitter.

I wanted sadness.

I wanted revenge.


 

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About FURY:

Revenge is an euphoric thing. Trust me on this. Nothing compares to the release you get when you ruin someone’s life. When they’ve stolen important things. Things that didn’t belong to them. Things I revel in making them pay for.

What? Have I offended you? I’m not here to appeal to your delicate senses. I have no intention of placating your wishes or living within your personal belief system nor do I care if you hate me. And you will hate me. Because I’m a brutal, savage, cold-blooded murderer and I’m here for my revenge.

I’m Ethan Moonsong...And this is the story about how I went from the world’s most sacrificing man to the most feared and why I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world.


FURY Trailer:

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Author Spotlight:

Author Photo2


Fisher Amelie resides in the South with her kick ace husband slash soul mate. She earned her first ‘mama’ patch in 2009. She also lives with her Weim, Jonah, and her Beta, Whale. All these living creatures keep the belly of her life full, sometimes to the point of gluttony, but she doesn’t mind all that much because life isn’t worth living if it isn’t entertaining, right?

Fisher is the author of The Seven Deadly Series, The Sleepless Series, and The Leaving Series, and was a semi-finalist in Amazon’s Breakthrough Novel Award.


Author Links:

AmazonB&N * Facebook * TwitterGoodreads * YouTube * Website
 

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The Love Series Release Day Blitz

 


***SPECIAL RELEASE WEEK PRICE OF 99 CENTS*** 




The entire series is together for a limited time. This box set includes the complete Love Series - Let Love In, Let Love Stay, Let Love Heal, Let Love Shine, Let Love Be, and Let Love Live. From New Adult to M/m Contemporary Romance, there's something in here for everyone. Laugh, cry, and fall in love with the couples of this bestselling series.

NOW AVAILABLE







Excerpt – Let Love Live:

A deep breath of air fills his lungs and he looks at me. Something dances in his eyes. With a trembling hand, he brushes my hair out of my eyes. “If someone would have told me that you’d walk into my life and turn it completely upside down, I’d have told them they were crazy.” He drags my hand into his and brings it up to his mouth. “For far too long, I was far too happy to keep everyone on the outside. And then you came along, and for the first time in so long, I felt something.”
“Me, too.” Tugging at our hands, I bring them to my mouth, feeling the shaking in his hands relax marginally.
“I was too afraid to let myself love anyone, thinking that I’d lose them somehow. The fear of loss kept me closed off from my own life. And now, with you…it’s not like that,” he pauses, looking for the right words. “What I mean is,” he clarifies, focusing his deep blue eyes on mine, “that with you, it’s not about being afraid of losing you.”
“I’m that easy, huh?” I joke. The look of growing frustration on his face tells me I’ve misunderstood him, and that now is not the time for jokes.
“No, that’s not what I mean. I’m petrified of losing you. When you fell yesterday, the only thought I could put together was one of sickening concern. What if he hits his head? What if he’s permanently injured? What if he blacks out and never comes back? But then, when I saw you were okay, the only thought going through my head was that there was no way in hell I could ever go through the rest of my life without you.”
His words cut through me. Stripping me bare, they reflect the exact same way I feel about him.
“You see, with you, the thing that scares me isn’t the thought of losing you. What scares the shit out of me is not having you in my life in the first place,” Dylan says, softly.
He lowers his face to mine, cradling my jaw, and searching my eyes. “I love you, Conner. You brought me back to life simply by just being here. And I don’t ever want to picture a life that you’re not a part of.”
With the softest of caresses, he strokes his thumb against my lower lip before pressing his own in the same spot. As his forehead rests against mine and our breaths mingle in the small space between us, I inhale him. This sweet, angry man who turned everything I thought I knew about my own life completely upside down.
“I’m not as good with words as you are, but know that I love you, too.”
With hands and hearts joined, we fall asleep, a sense of peace that, before this moment, was foreign to both of us, covering us like the warmest of blankest on the coldest of nights.






Author Spotlight:



Melissa Collins has always been a book worm. Studying Literature in college ensured that her nose was always stuck in a book. She followed her passion for reading to the most logical career choice: English teacher. Her hope was to share her passion for reading and the escapism of books to her students. Having spent more than a decade in front of a classroom, she can easily say that it’s been a dream.

Her passion for writing didn’t start until more recently. When she was home on maternity leave in early 2012, she read her first romance novel and her head filled with the passion, angst and laughter of the characters who she read about it. It wasn’t long before characters of her own took shape in her mind. Their lives took over Melissa’s brain and The Love Series was born.






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