Book Blast + Guest Post: Leticia by Lindsay Anne Kendal

LETICIA by Lindsay Anne Kendal
Release Date: April 14th, 2014
Paperback, 320 Pages
Genre: YA/ Fantasy / Paranormal 

Leticia has a dark secret, and somebody somewhere knows what it is. After being tormented and brutally attacked, it becomes obvious they want her dead. A mysterious group comes to her aid. They want to fight by her side and help her win the war someone has declared on her.
Together, they present a force to be reckoned with. Love, loss and longing put strains on the alliance. Not only must they fight their enemies, but their own fears and desires. Leticia must also face a harsh reality.
If she wants a happy future, she must first confront her past.

Amazon | Goodreads

"He stayed close to me for a few more seconds. I let my hand fall so it was now against his chest. I looked him straight in the eyes, getting lost in them for a moment. I could feel his heartbeat, hard and fast. I so desperately wanted to kiss him."

Why Book Covers are So Important

As well as being an author, I’m also a graphic artist. I’ve worked with several publishers, an audiobook company and independent authors. I’ve been doing this for a few years now and would say covers are one of, if not THE most important thing when trying to attract attention to your book.

The cover is a powerful selling tool—it’s the first thing readers will see. I’ll hold my hands up and admit, I’M GUILTY. I’m one of those people who won’t look at a book unless the cover screams out to me. It could be the model, the background, or simply the way the title is positioned. Either way, it has to shout STOP LOOKING AT THE OTHERS AND BUY ME! I know, I know, the old cliché ‘Don’t Judge a Book by its Cover’. I should read the blurb or a snippet/synopsis, but I honestly don’t. I also know a lot of other people who are like me. There are so many books out there for people to enjoy. Readers are spoiled for choice and do tend to buy the book with the most interesting and appealing images on the front. 

Your cover needs to really grip reader’s attention. Be bold, bright or intense, take some risks—while making sure the cover doesn’t misrepresent your work. There absolutely HAS to be a link between the cover and your story. Anything else is misleading to readers. I’ve known cases where this has happened and sadly it leads to some bad reviews. Make sure you pick the right artist to work with you. Someone who will listen to your visions, make suggestions and create a cover good enough to represent your work. Remember, your cover doesn’t have to be ‘busy’. You don’t need a million and one images. Sometimes, less is more. Also, I know a lot of readers who have seen badly made covers and they automatically assume the book will be badly written. Not good at all- and not very fair, but sadly this happens.

Making and receiving the right cover is a big task, both for the artist and the author. It could mean the difference between getting no attention, or becoming a best seller. In effect, the front cover is the very start of your story.

"I didn't reply, I put my foot down on the accelerator and he jumped out of the way quickly. I could hear him shouting my name as I drove, begging me to come back. But I couldn’t, enough was enough. Something inside me had snapped and somebody was going to pay..."

“I have lived in Droylsden, Manchester, all my life. I live with my parents, my younger sister, Cheryl and her little girl Faith. 
I never knew what I wanted to do with my life until I began writing. This is my dream. I get most of my inspiration from music, I’ll sit there listening to it and suddenly I’m no longer in the room. My stories play like videos in my mind, then I go and write them down. 
I’m a very dark person, I love anything spooky, supernatural, or unexplainable, and so that’s the genre I want to write in for the rest of my life.
I love watching scary films, although I find it very hard to find one these days that actually frighten me.
I also love getting creative with graphics. I've designed over twenty book covers so far. I create promo art and even book trailers. 
I have had a love of photography from being a child. I have literally thousands of photographs which I have taken over the years. Now, I have a professional DSLR camera and I'm looking to do photography as well as my graphics as a sideline project.”

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Author Interview & Giveaway: Mike Hartner

I'm really happy to share with you guys today an interview with Mike Hartner, historical fiction author of I, Walter.  I'm currently listening the audiobook version of this book and let me tell you, it's really good. Before continuing to the interview, let me share with you first about  I, Walter and Mike Hartner:

{ About The Book }

I, Walter by Mike Hartner
Published: May 10th, 2013
Genre: YA Historical Fiction

Walter Crofter was born into Elizabethan England. In a country and a time where favor and politics were both deadly, can an honest boy stay true to himself? Especially given his family background?
I, Walter is the first in a series of books in a saga which will span continents and time to arrive in present day North America. 

Each in the series will be connected, though that connection may not be obvious for several more books.  

It's almost like looking at a menorah (sic). Many lines, seemingly individual, connect to center at different points. 
{ About the Author }

Mike Hartner was born in Miami in 1965. He’s traveled much of the continental United States. He has several years post secondary education, and experience teaching and tutoring young adults. Hartner has owned and run a computer firm for more than twenty-five years. He now lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, with his wife and child. They share the neighborhood and their son with his maternal grandparents.

Find him online:   Website | Twitter | Facebook

And now the interview!
{ Author Interview }

Hi Mike, could you tell us a bit more about I, Walter?
I, Walter started out as an adventure. It quickly morphed into a historical fiction and romance. It is a memoir. It is the life story of Walter Crofter, a boy born in London in 1588, towards the end of Queen Elizabeth’s rule. He spends his teen years, at sea, a merchant marine. With romance, swords, and pirates, how can you not like the book?
What was the biggest challenge in writing this book?
The two biggest challenges for this book were: Getting Gerald’s character right…and listening to Walter’s angst and being able to write it. 
How long did it take you to write I, Walter?
As a book, I, Walter took ten months to write. But, other information pertaining to this book and the series had two years head start on his story. 
What's the most important theme in your book?
I think the best theme I can stress, not just in I, Walter but also in the rest of the books in this series, is that each person’s life is different, and that we can’t judge others until we’ve lived their life.
Was Walter's character easy to write?
Walter’s character had its difficult moments. The major reason for this was that some events were like pulling teeth. The general story would fester for several days, and then Walter would say, “ok, I’m ready to tell you what happened, now.”  And afterwards, I could understand why it was so difficult.
Why historical Fiction?
Why not? Walter was the first character, and I found out later the start of my series. I, Walter is the start of a series that will bring us eventually to present day. So, that early a date necessitates some form of historical fiction. 
Name a book you think has influenced your writing.
I’m pretty certain that all of Alexandee Dumas’ books, and Victor Hugo’s books, and Mark Twain’s books have influenced me over the years. But I, Walter and the Eternity Series are very much their own books.
What are the top ten things on your bucket list?
My bucket list includes:
- Continuing to write.
- Taking my son on diving trips to exotic locations.
- Enjoying the company of my wife and child. 
- Teaching and tutoring math for my son and all of his friends.
- Seeing all 50 states with my wife and son.  
- Seeing all 10 provinces and 3 territories with my wife and son.
- Watching my books become successful.
- Helping other writers become successful.
- Helping others around me to achieve their success.
- Enjoying every minute of a truly blessed life. 
When do you usually write?
I write when I am done everything else. My son is a teenager, and he has commitments: school, sports, parties, and friends.  My time is busy taking care of my son and my family. So, I use my writing as my stress relief. Sometimes I write in the evening. Other times I write in the morning. These interview questions I answered at 5 a.m. on a three-day weekend, when my son is with his school performing for his band. 
Are you a serious person?
I try not to be. Everyone needs to be for a certain portion of time. But life is too short. And being serious all the time doesn’t make it easy.
If you had to eat only one type of food for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Probably Italian, since my stomach loves lasagna, and spaghetti, and cannelloni, and canolli, and … the best combination of meats and cheeses my stomach has ever been blessed by tasting.  
Thank you Mike for this wonderful interview!

Thank you Melissa, for this opportunity.

{ Giveaway }

Big thanks to Mike for providing a copy of I,Walter for this giveaway! If you live in the US, you can choose from Print, eBook or audiobook format. For International, either eBook or audiobook. Giveaway ends May 7th,  good luck!

The Week's Entrée #13

Happy start of the week everyone! I hope you all get lots of reading done this week. I'm a bit behind in the books I have to read because I may or may not be a bit obsessed with a TV series called "Reign". Anyone seen it yet? It's really cool, although a bit creepy. I'm so glad I have like 10 more episodes to watch before I catch up. Yay! Oh, and I'm so Team Francis btw (cute blond guy on the right). <3 I like Bash too, but Francis owns my heart right now.

In other somewhat important news...

You Guys! I'm in love with Andrew Garfield and the latest The Amazing Spider-Man movie. It's, well, AMAZING. I watched it this past Saturday with my sister and oh my, the FEELS. Every sort you can imagine. You must watch it when it hits theaters (or now if it has already).

Now on to more blog related things...

Books I Bought, Won or Received:


A Red Tale by Nicola Mar
Published: March 20th, 2014
Genre: YA Fantasy
Source: Amazon

Snow has been falling on the Caribbean island of St. Michael for years, diminishing plant and animal life and leading to extinction. But underneath the island's ocean lies Surritz--a tropical, magical realm where water dragons known as Wayters have discovered their power of reason. 

After being hypnotized, fifteen-year-old Stasia Forrester meets Billy, a Wayter that makes her realize she has the ability to reverse global cooling. But Stasia has something that Billy wants, and to get it, Stasia must travel back in time. She soon discovers that her connection to Surritz is more complicated than she could have ever imagined. When love starts to guide her conscience, she faces tough choices. 

How will her decisions affect global cooling if her needs are more important to her than saving humanity? Does she trust that Billy is telling her the truth? If so, she may lose the only true love she has ever known.

I love this books' cover! I saw A Red Tale up in Netgalley and I thought about requesting it, but then I noticed it was free on Amazon. Hope it turns out to be a great read, at least it sounds like it.

{For Review}

Fury by Charlotte McConaghy
Published: March 25th, 2014/ Momentum Books
Genre: YA Sci-fi/Dystopian

When emotions are erased from the world, creating a civilization of mindless drones, only those with fury can survive.

On the same day each year Josephine Luquet wakes naked, shivering and covered in blood that is not her own. Under the cold gaze of the blood moon she is someone else entirely, but when dawn breaks her memories flee and she is left with only an icy horror, a burning fury. Amid a sea of drones, she alone hasn’t been cured. 

It will be the same each year: atrocities forgotten, truths hidden and pieces of herself left to die.
Until Luke. 
He isn’t like the other drones. With secrets whispering behind his eyes and a hunger for all things Josephine, he is the only one determined to help her discover the truth before the next blood moon rises. 
But time is running out. Is Luke willing to risk his life to be near her? Does he truly understand what violence she is capable of? 

Raw and full of passion, Fury is a story of love in a dystopian world, and how much we are willing to forgive in the struggle to remember our humanity.

The blog tour of Fury will stop by the blog on June 4th! 


Some Fine Day by Kat Ross
Expected Publication: July 1st, 2014 /Strange Chemistry
Genre: YA Sci-fi/Dystopian

Sixteen-year-old Jansin Nordqvist is on the verge of graduating from the black ops factory known as the Academy. She's smart and deadly, and knows three things with absolute certainty:
1. When the world flooded and civilization retreated deep underground, there was no one left on the surface.
2. The only species to thrive there are the toads, a primate/amphibian hybrid with a serious mean streak.
3. There's no place on Earth where you can hide from the hypercanes, continent-sized storms that have raged for decades.
Jansin has been lied to. On all counts. 

I couldn't resist requesting this book on Netgalley because it sounds so epic! I even took a peek yesterday and I'm pleased to say it passed the test. Sad I can't continue reading it until I finish the two books I'm reading for this week.


To Read This Week:

Both books are going well so far. One is fantasy and the other one historical fiction.After I'm done with them, I'm hoping to retake Some Fine Day and check out those hypercanes!


And that's it for this edition of The Week's Entrée. What book(s) are you planning to read this week? :)

That's What HE Said Thursday #9: Sterling Promise

That's what HE said Thursday is a weekly meme hosted at Chapter Break where you post a favorite line of a book boyfriend to his heroine. It's the perfect meme to share all those awesome quotes!

This week I want to share something from the latest book I read: The Fire Horse Girl by Kay Honeyman. This book was awesome, and although I wasn't that much of a fan of the guy at first,  he did manage to take my breath away several times later on.

"You ... you are as captivating as the flame that dances in a fire. And just as destructive."
Sterling Promise  to Jade Moon, The Fire Horse Girl

Sterling Promise couldn't have described Jade any better. She is amazing. A very lively character who pursues her dreams no matter the cost.

Book Review: Wrecked by Priscilla West

Title: Wrecked
Author: Priscilla West
Series: Wrecked #1
Genre: NA Contemporary
Publisher: Blackbird Publishing
Published: December 11th, 2013
Page count: 286 pages
Format: e-book
Source: Netgalley

Buy from: Amazon|Goodreads

Book Summary:
“There would be no happy ending for us. He was too damaged. I was too broken.”

Two years ago, Lorrie’s mother was murdered. But that wasn’t the end of it. Reeling from the tragedy, Lorrie’s father spiraled into alcohol, depression, and finally suicide.

The two most important people in Lorrie’s life are both gone but she’s still alive.

Trying to recover from the tragedy, Lorrie returns to campus, ready to pick up the pieces of her life. All Lorrie wants is to get back to “normal.”

Then she meets Hunter. The man, the legend, “the Hammer.”

Hunter is a cage fighter who takes on every fight like he’s got nothing to lose. His life is a tangled mess of girls, booze, and fist fights. And while it may seem like he’s got a devil-may-care attitude, he’s fighting a private cage-match with a monster he can’t defeat.

Lorrie knows that Hunter is the exact type of guy she should stay away from, especially in her fragile state, but Hunter has other ideas.

As Hunter and Lorrie grow closer together, will they be able to overcome their pain and heal each other? Or will they both end up wrecked?

*The Reader's Review*

My rating: 4/5 stars!

Wrecked turned out to be a great read and I'm so glad I decided to pick it up. I started reading it very late into the night and I just couldn't stop turning its pages, despite my sleepiness. I believe it had to do with the wonderful start of the story. It was swift, heart-pumping and interesting. 

The storyline is tragic, yet it has a lot of good scenes that made me smile and laugh a lot. It pained me to read about the tragedies of Lorrie and Hunter, but when they were together, everything seemed so much brighter. It's obvious from the first time they meet that there would be something romantic going on, but it was so nice how they went for friendship first. It was fun.

Between you and me, I liked Hunter's character much more than Lorrie's. Maybe because she was always running and pushing him away when all he wanted to do was make her happy. Hunter might be all tough and hard on the outside, but inside he's like the sweetest guy ever (reputation aside). Just imagine a hot guy lovingly holding kitties, ugh, adorable!

The sequel of this book is already out and I look forward to reading it because it ended in a cliffy and I want more of Hunter. I also want to know if his relationship with Lorrie is going to work out, or if they truly aren't meant for each other in the end. Oh, but most importantly, I NEED to know how the heck they will fare with their own pains. I don't see how one of them can possibly overcome it. A miracle for this one is a must and I won't accept anything else. Enough said.

*I had access to this title via Netgalley.*

The Week's Entrée #12

Another Happy Monday everyone! I hope you had a wonderful Easter yesterday (if you celebrate, if not then a happy Sunday!) I was supposed to go to class today but the backstabbers of my classmates said we were skipping today, so yeah I stayed home and they DID go. Never gonna trust them again. (Sorry for the small rant, I love you.)

In other more important news...

If you saw my post yesterday, you might have noticed that I'm participating in the Clean Sweep ARC Challenge hosted by Caffeinated Book Reviewer and Angela's Anxious Life. I'm excited to get my read on with those ARC's I've been wanting to read for a while now.

Also, I finally wrote down my Book Review Policy! This is mainly for authors and publishers who might want to know my reading preferences before sending me a review request of one of their books.

Books I Bought, Won or Received:


The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa
Published: April 24th, 2012/ Harlequin Teen
Genre: YA Paranormal/Fantasy
Source: iBooks

To survive in a ruined world, she must embrace the darkness…

Allison Sekemoto survives in the Fringe, the outermost circle of a walled-in city. By day, she and her crew scavenge for food. By night, any one of them could be eaten. Some days, all that drives Allie is her hatred of them, the vampires who keep humans as blood cattle. Until the night Allie herself dies and becomes one of the monsters.

Forced to flee her city, Allie must pass for human as she joins a ragged group of pilgrims seeking a legend, a place that might have a cure for the disease that killed off most of civilization and created the rabids, the bloodthirsty creatures who threaten human and vampire alike. And soon Allie will have to decide what, and who is worth dying for…again.

Enter Julie Kagawa's dark and twisted world as an unforgettable journey begins.

Other books I got for free in Amazon and Kobo...


What Following Brings by S.E. Campbell
Published: June 11th, 2013
Genre: Fantasy

Eden Schmidt is on a boat heading to Cantica, the most fearsome Demon prison in all of the land. She is attached with her friend, Adanna, and the Demon soldier, Aaron, two of the five souls that she has to find in order to save Zemiothstai, the world of purgatory, from the clutches of Satan. Until she brings all five souls together, she cannot hope to unlock the gates of heaven.

As she travels on a boat that brings her to Cantica, she believes that things cannot be much worse. Aaron has already informed her that the evil soul, Donovan, that is Satan's right-hand man has seen to it that one of his most powerful generals, General Yuri, will guard her personally. She has also heard that the Demon prison is so tight that nobody will be able to escape. But she has to. She has made a promise to Adanna's sister, Thema, that they would meet again.

This is the second book of The Bloodsone series. I need to read this one and the third book for Cuzinlogic, although I'm not very enthusiastic about it.


Tempus by Holly Lauren
Published: November 25th 2013 /Libertine Press
Genre: YA Paranormal

Chapel Ryan isn't crazy. At least, that's what she's been trying to convince herself of for most of her life. But after being hallucination-free for three years, Chapel finds herself facedown on her English classroom’s gritty linoleum floor. When she looks up, everyone around her is suspended in animation. Mouths hang open mid-yawn, feet hover mid-cross, Ms. Freeman’s arm flexes mid-sentence diagram. It's another hallucination. Or, is it? 

Chapel prepares to tear herself back to reality when something happens. Something that has never happened before in any of her hallucinations--someone moves. And not just any someone—it’s the new guy with a scar over his lip and a reputation as black as his perfectly styled hair. And all of the sudden Chapel's white-knuckle grip on her life has slipped, and with it, her assurance that what she's experiencing isn't real.

I won this beauty through Mean Who You Are's giveaway. Thanks, Chanzie!


To Read This Week:

I'm currently reading The Uninvited by S.L. Morgan, the second book in the Ancient Guardians series. I have high hopes for this Paranormal Romance book, it has such a fascinating world and wonderful characters. The romance is super sweet too.

When I get done with this one, I'll probably read What Following Brings or The Breath of Aoles by Alan Spade.

Upcoming Reviews:


And that's it for this edition of The Week's Entrée. How is your pile of books stacking up?

Clean Sweep ARC Challenge May 2014

I'll be participating in the Clean Sweep ARC Challenge hosted by Caffeinated Book Reviewer and Angela's Anxious Life! This is the first challenge I participate with my blog and I'm very excited about it. This challenge is all about reading those ARC's stacked up from Netgalley, Edelweiss or from the publishers that seriously need to be read.

My goal: 

Read 5 eARC's from Netgalley.

I'm going for something I think is doable yet still a challenge for me since this is only a month long event and I plan on reading other books as well. Wish me luck! :D

Will you be participating on this challenge? Let me know so I could cheer you on!