Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Book Review: Blood of the Sorcerer

Love will be tested, great powers will emerge, secrets will be revealed, and hearts will break over a death no one saw coming….

Princess Alannah hoped that upon her arrival in Anrad, things would begin to look up. But she comes to find that the warrior fae that she has fallen in love with is truly the Prince of Anrad and has been betrothed to another by his dying father. Isibeal, his betrothed, is beautiful, strong, and hiding a secret that Alannah is determined to reveal.

Adding to her worries, her sister Evyette has set off on a journey to uncover her increasingly mysterious past. Finally discovering who she is and where she came from, Evyette will find that some things are better left unknown. As Tristan and Kaleb help Eveytte through this discovery, she is yanked from their clutches by Samil who has volunteered her as the final sacrifice for him to remain in this realm.

Will Alannah succeed in her training at the hands of Master Jadoc, the Elder Faerie and still make it in time to join Tristan and Kaleb in stopping Samil? Will Brennus go against his dying father's last request and follow his heart?

When I was asked to read and review this book, I had to say yes. I loved the first book of the series, as I recall, I had lots of questions, so I had to read the second one too.

Truth be told, not a thing changes when it comes to the writing. The scenes are small and we get to know many different aspects of the book, since it’s not written by any point of view. The descriptions make the story vivid and alive so much, that there were times I was dreaming of the beautiful places in the book.

As for the characters, many things change here as they get more mature and they keep learning more and more things. Same thing applies for the bad guys as well.
Alannah starts her training. Again, many great scenes described by the author, since as I said in the previous review, she can write really great fight scenes.
Evyette gets to know many things about her past that many times I was left with my eyes wide open.
And as for the guys, Tristan, Kaleb and Brennus, I have to admit that there are all so great characters that I can’t choose among them. They are so nice to the girls and the others around them, and they are also very brave.

Unfortunately, many sad things happen, that I’ll not say. They were sad and unfair and I think I cried once or twice. Also, the book ends with a major cliff hanger. So much as I thought I didn’t have the rest of the book and the author forgot to send me the rest. I was going to send an e-mail to her, when I thought better, and re-read the few last paragraphs some times, to understand that that was the end of the book.

Bottom line, I liked it. It was as great as the first one, actually, I little better than the first. I can’t wait to read the next one as soon as possible, because I have to learn the conclusion of the story.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Book Review: Double Click

Fans of the romantic hit Click: An Online Love Story will enjoy another voyeuristic dive into the lives of Renee, Shelley, Ashley, Mark and Ethan, as Double Click picks up with their lives six months later. Are Renee and Ethan soul mates? Does Mark ever go on a date? Has Shelley run out of sexual conquests in Los Angeles? Will Ashley's judgmental nature sabotage her budding relationship? Through a marriage proposal, wedding, new baby and unexpected love twist, Double Click answers these questions and more. Readers will continue to cheer, laugh, cry and cringe following the email exploits of Renee and friends.

I was expecting this book to arrive in my mailbox ever since I finished the first one. Truth be told, I don't know what new to write, that I haven't already mentioned. I guess I'll have to repeat things from the previous post about the first book, and I hope that'll ok with you.

As in the first book of the series, the characters here speak only through e-mails. There are parts missing, important parts of the daily routine of the characters, but by sharing the e-mails the author manages to make them reveal to us.

It was fast, since you just read e-mails all the time. And there were some larger e-mails, with stories the characters were sharing for the first time. So in a way, I was getting to know the characters for the first time, even though I spend time meeting them in the first book.

In this one, we see the characters more mature, though they are 30-years-old give or take, and there are two new characters entering the conversations. Ethan, who's Renne's boyfriend, and Cassidy, whom I'll not reveal the role. Again, there are not descriptions of the characters, so you are free to identify your friends or yourself in them.

Bottom line, I liked it. It was as good as the first. I liked how the characters are changing and going throught different phases. And I liked that there were stories left to be told, not only among them, face to face, but also share them with us, via e-mails. Now, I can't wait to read the next book, if there is going to be any (and between you and me, I really hope there is).

Monday, May 20, 2013

Book Spotlight: The Circle (+Giveaway)

Circle copy

The Circle

Calum Ranson is sure of three things: his cousin Finley is alive, Calum will find him, and no one knows Calum and his family are Sidhe. No one until Laurel shows up at his mother's bookstore wearing a dark clan's mark. When Calum learns the details surrounding the disappearance of Laurel's brother, he suspects the evil Hobayeth clan. Calum and Laurel work together in the Realm of Man and the Otherworld to rescue her brother - revealing a connection between Calum and Laurel that may cost Finley his life.


"The Circle is full of magic and mystery. Readers will be engrossed in faerie realms, charming characters, and a state of wonder and imagination. The Circle is for those who delight in reading fantasy and exploring mystical worlds."

--Kathleen Fox, LibraryGames.com

Author Cindy Cipriano

Cindy Cipriano lives in NC with her husband, son, and 27 pets. Okay, more like one cat, three dogs, and many, many fish. Cindy is an award winning science teacher, who this past August celebrated her 12th first day of sixth grade.

Tour Giveaway

$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 5/31/13

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Movie Review: Hansel & Gretel Witch Hunters

In this spin on the fairy tale, Hansel & Gretel are now bounty hunters who track and kill witches all over the world. As the fabled Blood Moon approaches, the siblings encounter a new form of evil that might hold a secret to their past.

I wanted to see this one, ever since I saw the trailer. Due to other stuff, I couldn't, since now.

Let me start by telling, that I love when Hollywood picks "innocent" classic stories and makes them darker, pumped with special effects and gorgeous characters. Unfortunately, in the same time, it shows us, how little fantasy it has. How the writers over there are out of ideas, since they have reduced the themes to the minimum, and the only things that are left to film are classic stories and books.

The same thing happens with Hansel & Gretel. The all time favorite fairytale for youngsters, who only imagine the house of candy and, well, the candy, has been turned into a film with dark, ugly and hideous witches and kick-ass characters.

The story takes some twists when it comes to the siblings' past and the entire movie had a meaning and a storyline that fitted together great. The characters are kick-ass, especially Gretel, while Hansel turned out to have some flashes of cleverness of his own.

But, there are some negative points too. Firstly, the story is short, just an hour and half. It was super fast, the events were happening quickly and you didn't have much time to digest all of them. Then, the holes. In order to keep the movie running the script presented holes, like, how they managed to meet in a forest as vast as they say, etc. Lastly, the answers. The questions asked were nice, but their answers were easy.

The movie has many bloody scenes. At least, they made some really nice killings. And the steampunk note, with their guns, made the movie more appealing.

Bottom line, I liked it. I had a nice time before going to sleep. The killings gave me some nightmares, but I guess that's ok. I don't know if I should suggest it or not. I'll just say, that if you don't have anything else to watch, you might as well see this one.

P.S.: They are about to release a new Hansel & Gretel movie, which will have drugs and witches. When I say, that Hollywood is out of ideas, I mean it.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Book Review: Scarlette

What if Little Red Riding Hood was real?
Ninety years before the Brothers Grimm penned their version of "Little Red Riding Hood," an historic, gruesome series of events shocked all of Europe. Starting in 1764, an unidentified wolf-like animal ferociously mauled dozens of peasants in the Gévaudan region of France.

Whispered rumors of unnatural creatures blended with age-old superstition to cause mass hysteria. A werewolf was blamed for the carnage. Alarmed, King Louis XV sent his best huntsmen to rid the province of the beastly scourge, but this legendary massacre had only just begun.

Scarlette, a 19-year-old seamstress who is laboring to make ends meet, lives under this dark threat. Although fearful of the nightmarish monster lurking in the surrounding forest, she remains skeptical of the supernatural gossip.

Until her grandmother is attacked.

Scarlette learns that her grandmother has been infected by the animal’s bite. Desperate to save her, Scarlette begins to uncover the dark secrets of her village and finds there are those who wish to keep their pasts hidden. As time grows short, Scarlette is befriended by a local nobleman and a woodcutter who both share an eerie history with the wolf.

Scarlette must unravel the men’s connection and solve a long-forgotten crime. But as she pieces together the clues, Scarlette finds herself torn between the two men. Both of them desire more than friendship and together hold the key to the cure.

Based on both the traditional Grimm and Charles Perrault versions of "Little Red Riding Hood," this dark YA novel is set against the Beast of Gévaudan attacks, blending history with fairy-tale and gothic romance. Unique to the genre, the novel revives the French fable of the girl-in-the-red-cloak with a new, shockingly real existence that blurs the line between folklore and reality.

I've "known" Davonna ever since the blog started running. So, when she asked me if I'd like to read and review her book after my unshamefull comment on how much I liked the cover, I couldn't say no. Mind you, that the opinion written on this review has nothing to do with how much I like Davonna as a person. I think that Davonna and every other author on this world would respect an honest review than a fake one.
And after I made my point clear, let me start...

For starters, the story is written by Scarlette's point of view. That means, that we are as blind as her when it comes to most facts. Secondly, the book has nice descriptions that keep an image vivid in your head, but not too exhausting. Lastly, the characters: Scarlette is young, naive, but not too much. She is persistant and wants to find answers, but in a way that you can call her hotheaded and annoying. As for the guys, Louis and Francois, the things get more complicated, since they are both nice but mysterious.

What you can hold and admire in the book is the fact that it's not too tiring nor anxious. It took me some time to finish it, due to homework and reading, and I was managing a chapter or two every other day, but with a level effect. It's not that I wasn't anxious to read the entire thing, but in each chapter a new information was coming to light. A new element or a scene, that was creating a more clear picture as what to follow. I had to admit that the reason this book didn't make me want to read it in one seat, was because I had to calm down every other chapter.

AND the thing most important of all: the research!! I mean, when an author spends her time reading stories of Red Riding Hood, French books and language, in order to write her own, you have to respect it. One last thing: aside the three-paged note in the beggining for the making of the book and some explainations, Davonna also includes a short-story of Francois's point of view at some point in the main storyline.

Bottom line, I liked it. It was a book with foundations, interesting plot and nice cover (and yes, that's important). Truth be told, what is left of the book, is not the romance in it, but the action, the myths and the feeling of closure, which is rare to find in books those days.
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