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Monday, November 28, 2011

How to Worship a Goddess - Stephanie Julian




Format: Netgalley ebook, release date December 2011

From Goodreads:
He's exactly what she's always wanted. And she unleases him like a force of nature... 
Lucy was once the beloved Goddess of the Moon, and she could have any man she wanted. But these days, the goddesses of the Etruscan pantheon are all but forgotten. The only rituals she enjoys now are the local hockey games, whereone ferociously handsome player still inflames her divine blood... 
Brandon Stevenson is one hundred percent focused on the game, until he looks up and sees a celestial beauty sitting in the third row. A man could surely fall hard for a distraction like that..


“Wow.  Just… Wow.”  To steal a line from the book, that sums it up for me.  I read this book in two evenings, that’s how much I loved it.

How To Worship a Goddess, a Goddess named Lucy, actually.  Even more exact, Lusna Etrucian Goddess of the Moon.  Lucy is one of the Forgotten Goddesses, Goddesses mainly in name and diminishing power.  She’s worshiped by some still, namely the Lucani (skin shifters, werewolves).   Lucy has been feeling obsolete since her powers have been dwindling.

In walks Brandon Stevenson, Brand for short.  He’s a hockey player for the minor league, Railers.  He’s in his mid thirties and also feeling like his career on the ice is coming to an end soon.    Then he starts noticing a beautiful woman at every home game in the same seat.   And she is definitely noticing him.

When these two finally meet up there is no denying the instant and electric chemistry.  And oh my goodness, the sexy scenes are hot enough to singe the sun!  Seriously, if you want to read a very well written sexual scene that doesn’t just use words for the sake of using them, then this book is for you.

I really loved the way that Brand and Lucy interacted together.  Instant chemistry, love at first sight, call it what you will.  You know they are in it together.  Even a mind erase couldn’t keep them apart!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Voodoo Dues - Stephany Simmons




Title: Voodoo Dues (Lian & Figg #1)
Author: Stephany Simmons
Format: Ebook provided by author for review


From Goodreads:
From the beginning of Figg’s employment, there is something not quite right about the bar. There are few customers, a parade of neighborhood psychics and pentacle adorned visitors, all coming to hold court with her enigmatic boss. Figg is not sure what is going on, but she is determined to find out! 

When the local voodoo queen shows up, and the next morning her grandson ends up dead outside the bar things get interesting. 

Figg pesters Lian into telling her the truth about his former life, and is thrust into a world where the things that go bump in the night are real. There’s a murder to solve, zombies to lay to rest and a villain that neither of them saw coming. 


This was an entertaining story, although shorter than most.  Centrally it is about Figg (Eleanor Figg, to be exact) and Lian, her boss.  Figg is funky and has a love for the finer designer shoes. Lian is more the scholarly type, an anthropologist.  It’s a wonder why he opened a bar when what he seems to want is solitude. Other than that there isn’t really much detail about either character.  I did find it interesting how the point of view would switch each chapter between Lian and Figg.  I had expected this to be a bit disconcerting, but it flowed rather easily.

Friday, November 25, 2011

The Voice of Waterfalls - Natasha Salnikova


Title: The Voice of Waterfalls
Author: Natasha Salnikova

Format: Ebook provided by author for review

From Goodreads:
Inga manages to escape from a "house of terror" where she was held as a captive along with other girls who were kidnapped. She is chased into the woods and runs onto the road, almost falling under the wheels of an approaching car. She thought, it would be better to die that way than to return to her captors. The driver of the car, to her surprise, saves her. He brings her to his house and introduces her to his family: his mother, his father and his younger sister. He gives Inga a key to a separate room and brings her food. She appreciates his help and calls him her knight from the road. All she needs now is a phone to make a call to her mother. Her savior, Alman, says they don't have one in the house. He's also not in a hurry to take her from his house in the woods to the town where she can talk to police. And Inga began to doubt the noble intentions of her savior. After some time she starts to think this house is worse than the one she was imprisoned in before, if that was possible. 



From the moment I read the synopsis about this book, I knew I wanted to read it.  I just finished it today.  Natasha Salnikova really has a wonderful book here.  And a little fact about it, it was translated from Russian!  That impresses me so much.  You can definitely see some of the author’s Russian heritage in the book from some of the names used, foods mentioned. 

So from the blurb we learn that Inga was kidnapped and held captive with other girls.  But then someone comes along and she is afforded a chance to escape, which she takes.  When this happens you are cheering!  She runs out into the night, her captors hot on her heels.  You think she isn’t going to make it, but then out of nowhere there is a car.  It’s driver, Alman, gets out, fends off her captors and saves her.  Thank goodness!!

Google Friend Connect is Closing

For some of us bloggers, anyway.

So this blogpost from the Official Google Blog says that its discontinuing use for all non-Blogger sites.  That means anyone who uses Wordpress, Tumblr, or some other type of blog will not be able to connect to Google Friend connect to allow their users to follow them.  That also means that if you use a reader that pulls the info from GFC,  you are going to lose some of your feeds that you follow.  This is going to hurt our little blogging world.  Some people think it won't affect them.  But do you realize how many blogs you follow are not actually a part of Blogger?  More than you'd realize.

Below is the official post from Google.

So I haven't completely decided what I will do.  At the time of this posting I have installed the Wibiya bar, which has links to all of my social networking availability.  There are lots of apps you can add on to there.  It's not very intrusive, so it shouldn't mess up the look of your blog too much.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

WWW Wednesday Nov 23



To play along, just answer the following three (3) questions…
• What are you currently reading?
• What did you recently finish reading?
• What do you think you’ll read next?



Happy Wednesday before Thanksgiving (for some of us!).  Yay!  

1)  What are you currently reading?
This is a very interesting book, and I'm having a hard time putting it down.  I'm hoping I can finish it before I go for Thanksgiving dinner at my family's house!  
Inga manages to escape from a "house of terror" where she was held as a captive along with other girls who were kidnapped. She is chased into the woods and runs onto the road, almost falling under the wheels of an approaching car. She thought, it would be better to die that way than to return to her captors. The driver of the car, to her surprise, saves her. He brings her to his house and introduces her to his family: his mother, his father and his younger sister. He gives Inga a key to a separate room and brings her food. She appreciates his help and calls him her knight from the road. All she needs now is a phone to make a call to her mother. Her savior, Alman, says they don't have one in the house. He's also not in a hurry to take her from his house in the woods to the town where she can talk to police. And Inga began to doubt the noble intentions of her savior. After some time she starts to think this house is worse than the one she was imprisoned in before, if that was possible. 


2) What did you recently finish reading?
This weekend I read two books/novellas from Naomi Clark, Ungrateful Dead 
PI Ethan Banning wouldn't normally touch a haunting case. Mostly because he doesn't believe in ghosts. But when Charlie Mullen asks him to spend the night at a supposedly haunted morgue, Ethan figures, why not? He's broke and Charlie's offering double his normal rate, and that's good enough for Ethan.

But when a troublesome ghost really does show up, Ethan realises he's going to need more than a good supply of alcohol to get through the night

PI Ethan Banning is smoking too much, sleeping too little, and hearing voices. One voice, to be exact: the voice of the demon that possessed him on his last case. A voice that urges him to hurt, rape, kill, and Ethan doesn't think he has the strength to ignore it much longer. 

When his latest missing person case turns into a murder investigation, Ethan finds himself fighting not just demonic urges, but black magic, an incubus with a hidden agenda, and a client who just won't pay up. Luckily, Ethan's got a few friends on his side, like Detective Anna Radcliffe, and his trusty dog, Mutt. If Ethan can ignore the demon long enough, he might just solve this case before it kills him.


I loved both and you can find my reviews for them Here (Ungrateful Dead) and Here (Domonized)


3) What do you think you will read next?
Next up is Voodoo Dues by Stephany Simmons


From the beginning of Figg’s employment, there is something not quite right about the bar. There are few customers, a parade of neighborhood psychics and pentacle adorned visitors, all coming to hold court with her enigmatic boss. Figg is not sure what is going on, but she is determined to find out! 

When the local voodoo queen shows up, and the next morning her grandson ends up dead outside the bar things get interesting. 

Figg pesters Lian into telling her the truth about his former life, and is thrust into a world where the things that go bump in the night are real. There’s a murder to solve, zombies to lay to rest and a villain that neither of them saw coming. 





So what are your picks?  Let me know in the comments below, or leave me a link to your WWW!
Thanks for stopping by!!!





Kids & Parents Book Giveaway Winners




Ok, I've picked the winners for the two book giveaways:

I have emailed both winners, so if you don't have it in your inbox, please check your spam, or you can email me at eaz130@yahoo.com

Thank you both for coming by Fictional Candy!!

Parents Book Giveaway: Rachelle at Rachelle's Writing Spot
Kids Book Giveaway: Ronda at Queentutt's World of Escapism

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

For Queen and Country - Winner


Congratulations to Sonia Rodriguez!  

You have won a copy of For Queen and Country!  Please check your inbox and spam folders from an email from me, and I have also passed your winning entry along to the tour manager so that you can get your book. Thank you so much for stopping by Fictional Candy!!


Congratulations Graphics
PopularVirals.com


Sunday, November 20, 2011

Sunday Wrap Up 11-20-11

It's the wee hours of the morning here... Ok, its not really.  It's like 7:10am.  But on a Sunday that feels a bit wee.  :)

So this has been a busy few days for Fictional Candy!

I just wrapped up my stop on the tour for For Queen and Country and I've emailed that winner. They will receive a copy of the book, very exciting!

I also have another giveaway happening, my Kids and Parents giveaway   which is going on until November 22, 2011.  I'm pretty excited with how many entries I am receiving for that.  If you haven't entered yet, be sure to get over there soon.  There are TWO prizes there.  One prize is 3 brand new children's books, and the other is 2 brand new Supernanny books.  If you know me, I probably should have read those books, eh? Haha.  Just kidding....maybe.

I've also reviewed a few books this week, and they were all really good!  Seriously, check them out.

  • Intricate Entanglement, by Su Halfwerk A horror/dark fiction about a reporter who goes to a mental hospital to ask some questions about a mysterious death.
  • Dreaming of the Wolf, by Terry Spear A female bounty hunter after the mob, a werewolf, and a whole lot of action (wink wink).  #8 in the series, but as far as I can tell they all can work as stand alone books.  I know this one did.  This one will be released on Kindle December 1 and print on December 6. 
  • Ungrateful Dead, by Naomi Clark A short story about Ethan Banning, whom some of you may have met in Afterlife.  In this case PI Ethan is on his way to a morgue to investigate what appears to be a haunting. This story is #1 in the Ethan Banning Files
  • Demonized, by Naomi Clark A novella about PI Ethan, after Afterlife in the timeline. Ethan is dealing with the remains of the cacodaemon left inside him and on the case of a missing girl named Rhian. This story is #2 in the Ethan Banning Files
Next up I am going to start The Voice of Waterfalls, by Natasha Salnikova. A book about a girl who escapes one kidnapping horror story, only to be stuck in another. 

This week I received The Calling in print from Ashley Lynn Willis!!  This was my first author requested review, so you can imagine my excitement at receiving the book in the mail after reading the ebook.  Thank you again, Ashley!









And I received signed copies of Dark Seeker and Dark Beauty from Taryn Browning .  Thanks Taryn!







Yesterday I took my daughter to our local library book sale.  We made out like thieves.  Just look at all the books we bought!!  And yes, that is Gargoyle in there.  I was so surprised and excited to see that!






Oh, and we are about to get ready to leave, because I won tickets to Barney Live In Concert, Barney's Birthday Bash from Sweeptight.  
Thanks Sweeptight!!  

Ok, I have to get my daughter ready to go.  Hope you all enjoy your Sunday!!  



Saturday, November 19, 2011

Demonized - Naomi Clark



Title: Demonized
Author: Naomi Clark


Format: Ebook provided by author for review


From Goodreads:
PI Ethan Banning is smoking too much, sleeping too little, and hearing voices. One voice, to be exact: the voice of the demon that possessed him on his last case. A voice that urges him to hurt, rape, kill, and Ethan doesn't think he has the strength to ignore it much longer. 

When his latest missing person case turns into a murder investigation, Ethan finds himself fighting not just demonic urges, but black magic, an incubus with a hidden agenda, and a client who just won't pay up. Luckily, Ethan's got a few friends on his side, like Detective Anna Radcliffe, and his trusty dog, Mutt. If Ethan can ignore the demon long enough, he might just solve this case before it kills him




Ahhh, Ethan Banning, we meet again…and it seems you are a bit worse for the wear this time around!  Man, it really must suck sometimes to be Ethan Banning.  Excellent Private Investigator, catching things most don’t.  But then, most don’t catch cacodaemons – in their body - either!

In Demonized Ethan is dealing with what happened to him during his time in Shoregrave with Yasmin Stoker.   You know when the story opens with a dead hooker in a bathtub full of ice that this isn’t an ordinary story!!

Ethan is battling a sort of demon possession from the cacodaemon who jumped in him in Afterlife.  Yasmin just couldn’t remove it completely.  And worse yet, this demon is a sick psycho of a demon, filling Ethan’s mind with horrible images and basically declaring war on him for the most part.  Sometimes he even manages to control Ethan enough to speak out loud. 

Friday, November 18, 2011

Ungrateful Dead - Naomi Clark


Title: Ungrateful Dead
Author: Naomi Clark

Format: Ebook provided by author

From Goodreads:
PI Ethan Banning wouldn't normally touch a haunting case. Mostly because he doesn't believe in ghosts. But when Charlie Mullen asks him to spend the night at a supposedly haunted morgue, Ethan figures, why not? He's broke and Charlie's offering double his normal rate, and that's good enough for Ethan.

But when a troublesome ghost really does show up, Ethan realises he's going to need more than a good supply of alcohol to get through the night




In this story we meet Ethan Banning, PI from Afterlife.  I know I am not alone in saying that I love Ethan Banning!  He is snarky and can be a bit mean sometimes.  But he is smart and witty, and much better at being a PI than he lets us all believe.   
In this short little intro to all that is Ethan, he’s sitting in a bar drinking when he is approached for a job.  It seems that the morgue is haunted by the ghost of a young woman who was murdered!

Ethan doesn’t believe in all that paranormal stuff (insert snort and giggle from me here) so he doesn’t really want to take this job.  But money is money, and we all need it.  So off he goes with Charlie to investigate.

This is just a short story, I can’t tell you too much without giving it away.  I will just say it is a must read because it is absolutely fabulous, and it serves as a nice little prequel introduction before reading Afterlife (one of the best books I’ve read this year!).  If you like a touch of horror and fright, a bit of snark, something akin to a zombie, and ghosts, then this is the story for you. 

Available at Amazon 

Alternate Cover: 

Dreaming of the Wolf - Terry Spear


Title: Dreaming of the Wolf
Author: Terry Spear

Publish Date: December 2011
Format: Galley, NetGalley.com

From Goodreads:
Terry Spear's debut Heart of the Wolf was a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year. Known for her research into how wolves live in nature, Spear writes her werewolves as they would behave realistically, including pack dynamics, mating behavior, and hierarchies.

Werewolf pack leader Jake Silver is an acclaimed photographer. He sees a beautiful woman at the art gallery where his photos are on display, and his intrigue turns into wolfish protectiveness. Alicia Greiston has never met anyone like Jake-he's sexy, alpha, and totally irresistible, and he calls to something primal in her soul.
*sigh*  A man, an alpha male, a werewolf.  Could it get any better?  For years and years I was team vampire, there was nothing else of any importance.  However, I think the tides are turning and I am team werewolf.  How could you not be?  I have yet to read a story about a werewolf that is some wimpy little cowardly pup.  No way.  They are these big hulking alpha male men, ready to defend and protect their women and their pack at all costs.  *swoon*

And now I get to add Jake Silver to my list of favorite.  This book is #8 it the Heart of the Wolf series.  Which, embarrassingly, I didn’t realize when I requested the book from NetGalley.  Then looking through my kindle, I see I also have #5!! Whew!  Anyhow, this book easily read as a stand alone book.  There was no point that I felt lost in this world.  Everyone was described and everything fit.

This story’s heroine is Alicia Greiston.  Her mother was murdered six months ago, and she is out to avenge her mothers death.  She doesn’t want to kill the guy who did it, she just wants justice and wants him in prison where he belongs.  So she goes through training, she becomes a bounty hunter.  She may look like this petite little thing, but the girl can pack a punch and uses her feminine appearance to her advantage.  Usually she deals with female criminals, but now she has finally been handed the case she really wants.  Mario and his henchmen – mob guys.

Then we meet the hero male lead of the story, Jake Silver. Va va va voom, this guy has it all (as I’ve already noted haha).  Oh, did I forget to mention he takes stunning photographs?  The man is the whole package.  He sees Alicia, and instantly wants her – a human!

I really enjoyed this book, and all of its twists and turns.  There was a lot of action, and the picture was painted very clearly.  I kept finding myself waiting for my next free moment, itching to turn on my kindle and see what happens next.  Poor Alicia keeps finding herself in trouble, time after time.  These guys are proving harder to catch than she had anticipated!

And the love scenes were hot, and plentiful enough that I didn’t feel like the book was just about these two hooking up or, on the opposite hand, that they didn’t feel “it” for each other. They were hot together.  And the dreaming was an addition I really enjoyed to this story.

The author did a fantastic job dealing with the wolves in their wolf form.  I really felt like I was looking through the eyes of a wolf.  The great thing about shifter stories is you get this whole other layer of the characters. Sure, you get to know them as humans, but then you get to really know them – the true person – as their shifter self.  And in this book particularly, the way wolves interacted with each other and their surroundings really lent a realistic feel to the book.

I am definitely going to read the rest of this series, starting with book one.  Terry Spear has a new fan, and I can’t wait to start!

Available for purchase at: Amazon & Barnes & Noble

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Kids Books Giveaway!

Ok, I have TWO prizes here.  One for the parents, and one for the kids.  You can enter one or both, it doesn't matter!


Open to US only, all entries outside of US will be discarded.  Open to residents aged 15 and older.  Winner(s) will be notified via email and a post on this website, and have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is picked.  Contest ends 11:59PM EST 11-22-11 Winner will be picked via random.org on November 23, 2011.

Good luck!



Prize #1 - Kid's Pack
 All books are brand new!


Contest Over - Winners to be announced Nov 23, 2011.














Prize #2 - Parent's Pack (Otherwise called, "What I should have read")
All books are brand new!

Contest Over - Winners to be announced Nov 23, 2011.


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

We Have a Winner!!


Congratulations to Loretta Lynn, from Reading In My View.  Loretta has won the $10 gift card prize in my Thanks for the Books Hop!  ::applause::








Sunday, November 13, 2011

Virtual Book Tour - For Queen and Country




Welcome to the first stop on the book tour for the book For Queen and Country!  After you visit with me, you will head on over to Sapphyria's Book Reviews for the next stop!

Today I am featuring an excerpt from the book and a giveaway!  So make sure you read through and then enter the giveaway below!

For Queen and Country

(Shimmy & Steam, Book 1)

by Michelle Kopra



“Shush!” Constance leaned closer to the speakers. Petyr’s voice disrupted by static as the wind once more it broke into the tent. “The captain couldn’t land The Gypsy in this wind, and we need to be on the ground to get decent reception.”
“Argh. Get on with it, Petyr.” Lilly shivered again as she watched him on the sepia-colored screen.
Standing in the corner of the hall, the raised platform made him appear taller. His hair was slicked back, and mustache twirled upwards. His black eyes scanned the crowd in the imperial winter palace and held his arms up dramatically.
“Hush.” Constance tried to appear calm. “This is his first time out. He’s doing just fine.”
“His imperial majesty the Tsar Alexander, I give you the mysterious, the enchanting – La Seraphine!”
Constance took a drag of her honey-flavored cigarillo. On the screen, the center of the hall lit up, illuminating a small elegantly decorated tent. Gold coins shimmered along the edges, pulsing to the beat of the drums. The music rose in tempo and drapes slowly opened. From within, long bare legs appeared in a suggestive pose.
Constance took another nervous drag. A collective gasp rippled through the court. A shapely leg curled around the drape. The music paused. When it began again, the seductive sounds of the oboe joined in. The beat slowed down, the dancer twisted her legs to the music. Twirling hips, rolling curves, and Constance nodded with relief as the Tsar leaned forward.
“She’s got his attention.”
The Tsar lifted a monocle. Even on the sepia screen, the shell around the lens glowed with an unusual green light.
“Is that what we’re after?” Lilly adjusted brass knobs on the panel to get a clearer picture.
“No, the boss lady wanted Sera to place a listening device.”
The music built to its peak, pausing as the court held their breaths. With a crash of the drums, the fabric of the tent billowed to the ground like wings of a butterfly. The lovely Seraphine exposed.
Silence filled the hall as courtiers took in the sight. A headdress of coins shimmered over her honey locks. She stood in a pose, one arm over her head, and the other resting at her knee. With a flick of her wrist, gold coins jingled on her head and chest as the music began again. The beat quickened to match the speed of her shimmying hips.
The crowd remained breathless as she twirled. Hair and sheer fabric spun around her. Long legs descended off the platform taking steps as her hips curved forward. She reached the seated group, a veil, matching the fabric of her skirt appeared in her hands. Swaying to the music, she lifted the veil over her head and rolled her hips side to side until she inched closer towards the Tsar with a seductive smile.
More than one guard stepped forward, weapon at the ready to stop the dancer. However, the Tsar with a sheen of lust on his face waved them away. Seraphine danced, letting the fabric of her skirt sway against his legs.
Neither the Tsar nor his guards heard the frantic voice piped through a jeweled bit of earring.
“Abort!” Constance shouted, cigarillo lying forgotten on the ground. “I repeat, abort. The boss lady has called off the mission and is summoning us home. Return to camp immediately.”
Constance saw bewilderment on Petyr’s face, but couldn’t give her operatives any more information over the earpiece. Behind her, a flurry of activity kicked up when the ticker tape came through the makeshift console.
Petyr slid out of view of the console. However, Sera continued to dance for the Tsar.
“Dammit girl, get out of there,” Constance muttered.
But Sera did not leave. Instead, her veil spun again, making it flutter around her. As she spun in front of the hidden camera, she waved the hand signal for–Plan B.

BUY LINKS:
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
When not tending to every whim of my kids, cats, and hubby- I am writing stories about elves, airships, and witches. I can be found lurking on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/#!/profile.php?id=100003007949168







Nov 14: Fictional Candy (Excerpt/Giveaway)
Nov 15: Sapphyria's Book Reviews (Excerpt/Giveaway)
Nov 16: Close Encounters with the Night Kind (Excerpt/Giveaway)
Nov 17: An Open Book (Excerpt/Giveaway)
Nov 18: reading romances (Excerpt/Giveaway)
Nov 19: Romance Lives Forever (Interview/Excerpt)
Nov 20: Book Bags and Cat Naps (Interview/Excerpt)

Intricate Entanglement - Su Halfwerk



Title: Intricate Entanglement
Author: Su Halfwerk


Published: March 2011, Damnation Books
Format: Ebook provided by author for review


From Author Website:
Trapped in a lunatic asylum and compelled to listen to the stories of the deranged patients, Doug Pinkham becomes entangled in the twisted mind of a cold-blooded killer. As the reporter tries to get to the bottom of a mysterious murder case, he gets more than he bargained for. He must separate truth from fiction as he realizes he no longer controls his own world. But will Doug manage to escape the asylum, or will the killer's stories lure him into an enigmatic world full of mazes, each so fascinating that he can't stop listening?



This was indeed a very interesting story, a fresh approach at a compilation of stories.  I liked it quite a bit and would definitely recommend this to anyone who wants a quick read with lots to offer via horror, thriller, mystery and dark fiction.

First we come upon Doug Pinkham, a reporter on his way to a mental hospital to interview Dr. Martin regarding some visits a recently deceased man had made.  On the way his car breaks down, and he decides to walk, or run, the rest of the way.  It’s already eerie and that’s the first chapter.  There is a scary thudding noise, a strange absence of other sounds and movement, and fog that seems to disappear.

When he gets to the hospital Dr. Martin is with a patient, and an orderly offers to give Doug a tour to kill some time.  This is where the creepiness begins.  The orderly begins to tell Doug a series of stories of the patients living in the hospital; some gruesome, some horrific, some just very unusual.  But one thing is certain - you wouldn’t want to be in any of them!  My favorite is titled “Odd”.  I found that one to have a slight little surprise twist, and I enjoyed that.  But they all definitely had a sense of flair, and were all so different.  
Stories within a story, you definitely get to experience everything that is Equanimity Psychiatric Hospital. 

As this story goes on you find yourself looking for clues and trying to figure out what the heck is going to happen next.  It is definitely a fun and imaginative read!  I kept questioning myself if things were as they seem, and each turn of the page brought another surprise. 

Available on:


Thursday, November 10, 2011

Gastien Part 1 - Caddy Rowland



Title: Gastien Part 1: The Cost of the Dream
Author: Caddy Rowland

Format: Ebook provided by author for review.


From Goodreads:
In this both dark and hopeful first book, young Gastien Beauchamp begins his journey to Paris with two goals in life. The first is to become an artist with his own studio, following his own rules. That is an almost impossible dream for a peasant. Gastien has no money, no formal training, and is a naïve eighteen year old fresh off the farm. Paris spits out talented men into the gutters every day. “Good” gets you nowhere. “Great” maybe gets you a bowl of soup. The second is to become the greatest lover in France. That should be easy. With his stunning looks, and his willingness to learn, the women of Paris are about to be awakened in a way they have only dreamt about in the 19th century! Gastien swears that he has no interest in love. Love would only take away his dreams. But he is innocent and does not realize that sex without love can be quite empty. Before he can learn that, he must face obstacles and heartaches that will threaten to destroy his very soul. Insatiable, burning passion. Focus and drive. Raw, natural talent. Armed with those, Gastien is determined to succeed at any cost. Poor Gastien. If he could only know in advance what struggles lay before him, he might think twice about leaving home. However, he is young and full of hope. The dreams burn relentlessly inside of him, not allowing him a moments rest. And so the journey begins..

**There are some very graphic scenes that may be offensive to some and I would not recommend the book to anyone under 18.


This is the story of a young boy, Gastien, growing into a man , and the journey he takes along the way during the 1800s in France.  It begins with him at the age of 43, and the rest of the book is a flashback of what brought him part of the way to that point.   Overall I really enjoyed this story much more than I expected I would.

Gastien starts out as a young boy, oldest of 10 Beauchamp children who live on the family farm.  He is abused by his father, both physically and verbally.   Gastien dreams of becoming a professional artist, rather than taking after his father farming cauliflower and other vegetables.  And due to his upbringing of abuse, he is determined to basically never allow anyone to get very close to him emotionally.  Yet along the way he does make a few close friends that I believe will be there throughout his life.  Gastien is a jumble of dichotomies.  He is a bit arrogant, yet naïve about his true self; mean and off-putting, yet innocent and needy; raucous and raunchy, but sweet and thoughtful; immature yet wise beyond his years.  I truly enjoyed getting to know him.

It was very interesting to see him go from an abused boy, to a fearful yet brave teen, to a homeless young adult, to a brazen yet damaged man.  There were parts of this story that made me very sad, a little ill, excited, happy and hopeful for his future.  The timeline covers years, and you get to see how he grows and changes, blooms and withers under the circumstances he lands himself in.  I loved meeting some of the other characters in his life, I felt they truly added a richness and comfort he desperately needed.

I would recommend this book to people who love historical fiction or drama, I don’t think I would classify this into a romance category.  There is a bit of romance, but it is not really centric to the story so far.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

WWW Wednesday 11-9-11



To play along, just answer the following three (3) questions…
• What are you currently reading?
• What did you recently finish reading?
• What do you think you’ll read next?

Then answer in the comments, or go back to Should Be Reading (Click on image above) and add your blog to the list! :)


What am I currently reading?

In this both dark and hopeful first book, young Gastien Beauchamp begins his journey to Paris with two goals in life. The first is to become an artist with his own studio, following his own rules. That is an almost impossible dream for a peasant. Gastien has no money, no formal training, and is a naïve eighteen year old fresh off the farm. Paris spits out talented men into the gutters every day. “Good” gets you nowhere. “Great” maybe gets you a bowl of soup. The second is to become the greatest lover in France. That should be easy. With his stunning looks, and his willingness to learn, the women of Paris are about to be awakened in a way they have only dreamt about in the 19th century! Gastien swears that he has no interest in love. Love would only take away his dreams. But he is innocent and does not realize that sex without love can be quite empty. Before he can learn that, he must face obstacles and heartaches that will threaten to destroy his very soul. Insatiable, burning passion. Focus and drive. Raw, natural talent. Armed with those, Gastien is determined to succeed at any cost. Poor Gastien. If he could only know in advance what struggles lay before him, he might think twice about leaving home. However, he is young and full of hope. The dreams burn relentlessly inside of him, not allowing him a moments rest. And so the journey begins..


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What did I recently finish reading?
Me and My Shadow, by Katie MacAlister
May Northcott is at the end of her tether. Her demon boss has moved in and is making life hell. Her scorching hot dragon lover seems to think everything can be solved with a fiery kiss. And worse still, she's being shadowed by her ditsy twin sister -- a naiad who simply can't seem to stay out of trouble. The arrival of a nearly-dead man on May's doorstep could be the final spark that sets light to their tinder-box world. And with dragon war imminent, it's looking increasingly like it will be up to May (and her watery shadow) to stop it before the fire consumes them all, and their lives end up in smoke






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What will I read next?
Intricate Entanglement, by Su Halfwerk
Trapped in a lunatic asylum and compelled to listen to the stories of the deranged patients, Doug Pinkham becomes entangled in the twisted mind of a cold-blooded killer. As the reporter tries to get to the bottom of a mysterious murder case, he gets more than he bargained for. He must separate truth from fiction as he realizes he no longer controls his own world. Will Doug manage to escape the asylum, or will the killer’s stories lure him into an enigmatic world full of mazes, each so fascinating that he can’t stop listening?












I would love to hear whats on your WWW.  Let me know!