Sep 29, 2012

Building the Book Pile #22

Welcome to Building the Book Pile! A Weekly meme inspired 
 here at Cover2CoverBlog.

Hope you are all are enjoying some fall-like weather like I am... I am currently- reading/ loving sweaters/ watching Hocus Pocus on repeat/ drinking cider and eating candy--- YAY Fall! So get cozy with a great read and let me know what your book Haul was like this week in the comments!

Coming up on the Blog...

September RAK Wrap up (30th) 
Blog Tour: The Burning of Isobel Key by Jen McConnel
Blog Promo Blast: Lark's End, The Fall of Gadaie Series
by Christina Leigh Pritchard
Review: The Infects by Sean Beaudoin (Plot- Zombies)- Did not get to it this past week- sorry

What I got this week...

EBooks For Review
 The Athena Effect North Pole High: A Rebel Without a Claus
The Athena Effect by Derrolyn Anderson from Author for Review 
North Pole High by Candycane Claus for Bewitching Blog Tour

Did you miss anything this week?

Sorry about the small amount of postings this week, I was sick and catching up on some reading.

Sep 27, 2012

Recent Reads: The Guardians by Lily Raye

The GuardiansThe Guardians by Lily Raye
Format: PDF from Author
Available: NOW!

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Background: Elijah and his "family" have been send by the Dominion to be Guardian Angels to the Thomas family after their time of need. Each are given an assignment, aka person, and expected to help them cope with their pain, torment, as well as teenage problems and the story begins with a death.

Review: The story follows two points of view; Elijah who is sweet and shy and is assigned to Abby the eldest daughter of the Thomas family, and Cassie who does not know her assignment since she is new and the Dominion (higher ups) want her to feel for the pain of her assignment to link with them...

I enjoyed this book quite a bit, however I am normally but off by angel books that aren't all for teenage angst and malice... this one was different. Raye kept it on point, the characters are well formed, entertaining, and the story line keeps you questioning so many things. As a reader you aren't sure if the angels are going to stay angelic, or that their assignments are going to make it without committing suicide due to grief and all this rolled into one story was a delight to read.

I received this as a PDF from the author and was a little put off at times by the editing errors, there were a few missing words here and there and some typos, but all in all a great read.

E-Book received in exchange for an honest review.

View all my reviews

Sep 25, 2012

Building the Book Pile #21- Late :/

Welcome to Building the Book Pile! A Weekly meme inspired 
 here at Cover2CoverBlog.
So.... this post is super late.... but I was not able to check my weekend mail until yesterday so I guess this works out because I did not get anything until yesterday :)
Also-- Trying to get some more awesome followers, spread the word, giveaway when I hit 150 :)

Coming up on the Blog...

Review: The Guardians by Lily Raye (Plot- Angels)
Review: The Infects by Sean Beaudoin (Plot- Zombies)
September RAK Wrap-up

What I got...

 For Review:
AboveLiar & Spy
Above by Leah Bobet from Scholastic
Liar & Spy by Rebecca Stead from Random House and RandomBuzzers

Did you miss anything?...

Blog Tour Promo: Dark Promise
Blog Tour Review: Zombies Always Knock Twice -- Blog Tour Giveaway still going
Review: Monstrous Beauty


Many Thanks to Scholastic and Random House!

Thanks for reading!

Sep 20, 2012

Reader Review: Monstrous Beauty by Elizabeth Fama

Monstrous BeautyMonstrous Beauty by Elizabeth Fama
Available: Now!
Publisher: Macmillan Audio

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

From the Publisher, Synopsis: 

Monstrous mermaids, ghosts, and a century-old curse feature in this beautifully crafted, compulsively readable thriller.
In 1872, mermaid Syrenka falls in love with a young naturalist. When she abandons her life underwater for a chance at happiness on land, she is unaware that this decision comes with horrific and deadly consequences.
One hundred thirty years later, seventeen-year-old Hester meets a mysterious stranger and feels drawn to him in a way she can’t explain or resist. For generations, love and death have been inextricably linked for the women in her family. Is it an undiagnosed genetic defect . . . or a curse? Hester’s investigation of her family’s strange, sad history leads her to the graveyard, the crypt, and the bottom of the ocean—but powerful forces will do anything to keep her from uncovering her connection to Syrenka and to the tragedy of so long ago.

Gorelenore Review:

Background: In the 1800’s in Plymouth, Syrenka is in love with Ezra; the only problem is that Ezra is human and she is not. Current day, Hester is just a teen with a horrible family problem, after having children, all of the mothers die. Hester has sworn off love and children, until one day she meets Ezra and begins to think that there is a chance for her to have everything she dreams of.

Review: Two intertwining stories are told in this wonderful, creepy, and dark take about sea creatures, magic, and ghosts. With alternating point of views we learn about Syrenka and Ezra and about Hester and her modern life. I received this via audio book from Macmillan and was at first a little put off by the audio reader; but as the story progressed, the strength in her voice added to the strength of the female characters and how they interacted throughout the book.
Syrenka and Ezra’s story is full of ups and downs, first I hated her and then I felt for her. Their story is set in the 1800’s in Plymouth and how they came to be together. Alternating is Hester’s tale, a normal history-buff teenager, working/ living in historic Plymouth, trying not to fall in love. Syrenka’s and Hester’s tales start to mold together and the darkness begins with a good portion of the story taking place in a cemetery and an old church. Later, there is drama, murder, trickery, and myth all rolled into one amazing story. Fama did a wonderful job recreating the time periods and the layout of Plymouth, as well as researching extensively to do so. Very well written, in vernacular at times, and overall a wonderful read/ listen. Highly recommended.

Audiobook received from Macmillan Audio in Exchange for an honest review.

View all my reviews

Sep 19, 2012

Blog Tour: Excerpt, Review, & Giveaway -- The Zombie Always Knocks Twice by E. Van Lowe

The Zombie Always Knocks Twice
E. Van Lowe

Hollyweird #1

Genre: YA Paranormal
Publisher: Imajin
Cover Artist: Ryan Doan

Kindle ebook: 978-1-926997-74-2
Trade paperback: 978-1-926997-81-0

Page Count: 177 pages


Hollywood California, Swimming pools, movie stars… and now the risen dead
Hollywood can be a difficult place to grow up, especially if you’re Kristine Golden, a fifteen-year-old necromancer with a sworn duty to lay the risen dead back to rest and no desire to be in the movie business.

When handsome deadie Alex Romero swaggers into her life, Kris must keep her promise, despite her growing feelings for him.  If that’s not enough to give a girl a headache, a murderous zombie comes knocking at Kris’ door, rocking her world and threatening her family.

Can Kris solve the mystery of the rampaging zombie before someone else winds up dead? Or will the walking dead take over Hollywood and turn it into… Hollyweird?


The man coming up the block toward us in the hooded sweatshirt stopped directly in our path, about ten feet away.  The hood dropped revealing his face.  The hair on the left side of his head had been shaved off revealing tiny bits of bony white scalp.  Huge staples held his crooked jaw in place.  There was a large indentation in his forehead from some sort of blunt force impact.  His left eye was covered with a milky, white cataract, and the right drooped unnaturally into his cheek.
My breath caught yet again.  Standing before us was a zombie.
‘LEAVE US ALONE!” the zombie screeched.  Then he took off on a dead run and plowed into Alex with the impact a freight train.
Just great, I thought.  Hollyweird—where the dead come out to play.
  Zombies aren’t what the movies make them out to be—slow moving, brain dead, brain suckers.  They’re the result of a raising gone bad.  They can be strong, and fast, and very dangerous.   Also, a bite from a zombie won’t make you a member of the living dead, although I’m sure it must hurt like hell.
The one that plowed into Alex was almost six feet tall and about seventeen years old.  He hit Alex with inhuman force, propelling him backward. They slammed into a parked car that seemed to explode on impact.  The twisting metal and shattering glass sounded like a horrible automobile accident.  The car was totaled, and Alex was embedded into the passenger side, like a toy soldier into a wad of Play Doh. 
“Oh, God!” I screamed. 
Alex’s eyes were closed.  He wasn’t moving… but the zombie was.  He peeled himself away from Alex and the wreckage.
“Zombie!” I called at the top of my lungs.  “I command you to tell me who raised you and what you are doing here.”
The zombie faced me, a puzzled look on his distorted face.  It dawned on me he hadn’t known I was a necromancer until then—not that it made a difference.  He wasn’t bound to me so he didn’t have to answer my questions.  I was bluffing.
“LEAVE US ALONE!” He screamed in response.  He started for me and a wave of fear rippled my gut.
“I command you to stay back!”  I called, but my voice was cracking, my words lacked conviction.  I took a few shaky steps backward.  The zombie continued toward me.
Just then the sound of twisting metal snagged both our attention.  Alex’s eyes were open, and he was separating himself from the wreckage.  He shed the automobile with the ease of a snake shedding an old skin.  He began advancing on the zombie.
“What’s going on down there?”  We all looked up and saw three men, all Johnny do-gooders, running up the block in our direction.
“Leave her alone,” one of them called.
The zombie looked from the advancing men to Alex and me.
“Hhhhh!”  Hot breath hissed angrily at us.  Then he took off past us like a deer, bounding up the block.  By the time the men reached us he was nowhere in sight.
“You ok?” one of them asked.
“Yes.  He… attacked us?”
“What the heck happened here?” Another of the men asked.  He was staring at the twisted pile of metal that used to be a Buick.
Before I could open my mouth, Alex launched into an explanation.  “My girl and I were out for a stroll, and he was taking a sledge hammer to that car when we happened upon him.  Guess it was some kind of vendetta.  And when he saw us he decided to add us to the list.”  The lie flowed from his lips effortlessly.
“Hey, aren’t you on that TV show?” the third man asked.
Alex smiled.  The Beloved.  Yes.  You watch it?” 
“No, but my girlfriend does.  She can’t get enough of you vampire guys.”
Any suspicions the men may have had about our presence on the street or Alex molesting me immediately vanished.  Alex was a bona fide Hollywood star.  I guess they thought all stars were boy scouts.  Where have they been? 
Several minutes and three autographs later the men were gone, and Alex and I were walking back to the party.
“You told that lie like you do it all the time,” I said.
“I’m a dead person among the living.  I do do it all the time.”
That wasn’t what I was talking about, but I didn’t push it.  He seemed annoyed.  I guess being attacked by a zombie wasn’t an everyday occurrence for him either.
“If it makes you feel any better, I memorized the car’s plate number.  I’ll take care of the damage,” he said, his words softening. 
“Thanks.  That does make me feel better.”  I wanted to hold my tongue, but I couldn’t.   “So, you have any enemies who’d want to send a zombie after you?”
“I don’t have any enemies.  I’m a lover not a fighter.”  The annoyance was back.
“Maybe you loved the wrong woman.”
“I’m dead.  I can’t love any woman,” he replied.  The words were seething with anger or pain.  I couldn’t tell which.
“He said ‘leave us alone.’  Who’s us?” I asked.
“I don’t know!”
 He was getting agitated again so I dropped the subject.  But not without noting there was more to Alex than he was telling me.   A vindictive zombie had been set loose in Hollywood.  It was something I needed to look into along with the deadie from the diner.  My, my, I was suddenly a very busy girl.

The Zombie Always Knocks Twice (Hollyweird, #1)The Zombie Always Knocks Twice by E. Van Lowe
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Background: Kris is a fifteen year old girl with some pretty weird powers, she is a necromancer and it is her duty to return those raised from the grave back to their peaceful state. This all seems fine normally, but trying to do this, deal with your father, and pass algebra II, it is getting frustrating.

Review: Such a fun read. kris is independent and strong, and trying to solve all life's problems way too soon in her own life. The book is fast paced and full of twists, surprises, a mystery, and drama that keeps the reader intrigued. Kris has a crazy friend that is always getting into trouble, meets a boy that is a TV star who needs her help, is dealing with a raised cheerleader, a zombie, and her father and sister acting nuts.... All of this made for great laughs and suspense. Looking forward to book 2.

View all my reviews

About the Author

E. Van Lowe is an author, television writer, screen-writer, playwright and producer who has worked on such TV shows as "The Cosby Show," "Even Stevens," and "Homeboys In Outer Space." 

He has been nominated for both an Emmy and an Academy Award. His first YA Paranormal novel, "Never Slow Dance With A Zombie," was a selection of The Scholastic Book Club, and a nominee for an American Library Association Award.  His Best Selling novels, “Boyfriend From Hell” and “Earth Angel,” are the first two books in the Falling Angels Saga.  “The Zombie Always Knocks Twice” is the first book in his Hollyweird series.

E lives in Beverly Hills California with his spouse, a werewolf, several zombies and a fairy godmother who grants him wishes from time-to-time.



Find The Author


 Blog Tour Giveaway!

  Open to US only.

10 Kindle copies of The Zombie Always Knocks Twice

1Bewitching zombie prize pack contains: zombie bag, zombie zone caution tape, fake brains in a meat container (because what's a zombie prize pack without brains right), two rubber duckies, a large bloody hand print sticker, Bat Bite hand sanitizer, Halloween theme bottle stickers, a purple skull mug, and a Bewitching notebook, pen, and necklace.

Sep 18, 2012

Blog Tour: Excerpt-- Dark Promise by Julia Crane and Talia Jager

Dark Promise by Julie Crane and Talia Jager


Rylie has it all - great friends, dream boy, loving family. But on the eve of her sixteenth birthday, her perfect little world shatters. A stranger claiming to be her real mother appears with a secret: Rylie is a faery whose powers will be unleashed on her birthday. Captured and forced into a new life, Rylie struggles to keep everything she loves and discovers a terrifying truth: some promises cannot be broken.


My mother led her into the living room. The lady’s piercing green eyes rested on me, sending a chill down my back. My father followed her gaze. “Rylie, do you know this woman?” Dad asked.
“No.” I shook my head slowly. “I’ve never seen her before.”
“Rylie, maybe you should go to your room,” Dad suggested, his gaze demanding I do as he said.
“No. If this has something to do with me, I want to hear it.” I crossed my arms and sank against the back of the couch.
Mom and Dad exchanged a worried glance, but turned back to the lady on the couch. “Please, go on.”
Without taking her eyes from me, the lady calmly stated, “My name is Azura, and I am Rylie’s birth mother.”
My father, who was always a level-headed man, was on his feet in seconds, his face hard. “What are you talking about?”
I felt like I had fallen into some kind of parallel universe. Did this woman just say she was my birth mother? How could she be my birth mother? That would mean I was adopted, but wouldn’t my parents have told me something like that?
My mother shook her head. “Birth mother? Rylie isn’t adopted.” She reached over and took my hand. “Believe me, I’ll never forget the eleven hours of labor.”
The woman sat perfectly still in the blue armchair across from us, with her hands clasped on her lap. “I know it’s hard to accept, but it’s true. Your daughter died shortly after she was born. I switched the infants. Rylie is mine.”
The wind left me as if I had been punched in the stomach. I couldn’t breathe, and the room spun. I gripped the pillow next to me with my other hand as I clung to my mother.
Silence filled the room for a moment, and then my father exploded. “You need to leave now!” He pointed to the door. “Get out of this house and don’t come back without a court order.”
The lady smiled sincerely, her face still as calm as it had been when she walked in the door. “Please, hear me out. I realize this is a lot to take in.”
“No! This is preposterous! Nobody died. Rylie is ours.” Dad’s voice was like thunder.
I studied the lady. She seemed so honest and soft-spoken. Why would she pretend something like this? Why would she ruin our family if it weren’t true? And if was true, why was she coming clean now? Something in me believed her even though I didn’t want to. I swallowed hard and rubbed my sweaty palms on my shirt.
“Let her talk,” I said hoarsely.
“Rylie, you can’t believe her.” Dad looked stricken.
“I’m curious as to why she thinks I’m her daughter. Let’s hear her out.” I crossed my arms and scooted closer to my mother, comforted when she wrapped an arm around me.
Dad turned back to the woman called Azura, and his frown deepened. “Fine.” He sat back down in his seat and glared. “Talk.”
“Thank you. I’m going to tell you something not many humans know, and I have to trust you to keep it secret for Rylie’s sake.” She addressed the statement to my parents.
Humans? Who talks like that?

About the Authors

Julia Crane
Julia Crane is the author of the YA paranormal fiction novels: Keegan's Chronicles, Mesmerized, Eternal Youth, and Dark Promise. She was greatly encouraged by her mother to read and use her imagination, and has believed in magical creatures since the day her grandmother first told her an Irish tale. Julia has traveled far and wide to many of the places her grandmother told her about, gaining inspiration from her journeys to places like Nepal, Cyprus, Sri Lanka, Italy, France and many more. And who knows? Maybe the magical creatures she writes about are people she met along the way.
Keep updated by joining her mailing list.

Find Julia Online
Talia Jager
When Talia isn’t hiding in the closet from her six children munching on a chocolate bar, she enjoys hiking the red rocks in Utah or sitting on the beach with a Kindle in her hands and her toes in the ocean
Talia has written a number of books for young adults, including Damaged: Natalie’s Story, Teagan’s Story: Her Battle With Epilepsy, If I Die Young, Secret Bloodline, Lost and Found, and The Gifted Teens Series. Connect with Talia online at

Find Talia Online