Monday, December 29, 2014

Exclusive Excerpt #1: Ashley's Dream by B.R. Kingsolver

Hello my readers!
B.R. Kingsolver, the author of a great new contemporary romance/new adult, has shared with me four exclusive excerpts.  And I'm going to share them with you as a little holiday gift!

Can a woman have both love and her dreams?
Ashley isn't looking for love. Her dream is to travel the world, and getting tied down by a man doesn't fit into her plans. Relationships always get so complicated, and men always lie. It's better just to have some fun and no one gets hurt. 

After graduating university, she doesn’t get the job offer she hopes for, so it's life as usual, working as the manager of a college town bar and spending time with her friends. But life doesn’t always go the way you plan, and the next thing Ashley knows, she has two hot roommates interested in her. She likes them both, but is it love or just infatuation? She always seems to make decisions that break her heart. 

When the job offer she has always wanted arrives, her heart is torn between love and following her dream. 
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Marcie flew in to Denver on Friday and drove up to Fort Collins that afternoon. We had dinner together at the bar and then I went back to work. She showed up at my place the next morning at nine, and I would have killed her if she hadn’t had a key and been quiet about it. She let herself in, and though I woke up, I fell back to sleep when she didn’t come into my room.
The smell of bacon and fresh coffee woke me the second time. I staggered into the kitchen and watched in a daze as she shoveled pancakes and bacon on a plate and set it on the table.
“Eat,” she said, pouring coffee in a mug and setting it beside my plate. God, I thought, she’s going to make someone a great wife. As I ate, I decided that it should be me.
“Will you marry me?” I asked.
She threw back her head and laughed. “We might as well, considering our luck with men.”
We finished breakfast and I showed her my new clothes.
“Kind of a bummer,” I said, modeling one of the dresses. “I look gorgeous, but I don’t have anyone to wear them for.”
“Get Tyrell trained,” she said. “Things can’t be that busy during the summer. We should go out when I’m home.”
“How much longer are you going to keep the apartment here?” I asked. I knew it had to be a pain driving up here from Denver every week.
“I don’t know,” she said. “The lease is up next month. But from what they’re telling me, I’ll probably be on the road, either working on audits or project work, for the next couple of years. Some people do that their whole careers.”
She watched me change and then said, “You know, we could get a two or three bedroom place for less than we spend on two singles.”
I looked around. I’d had the apartment for a year, since Marcie left the previous summer for her internship in New York. I wasn’t particularly attached to it. We’d lived together for four years, and were comfortable together.
“Do we have to get a bunch of cats?”
I didn’t think it was that funny, but she laughed until tears ran down her cheeks.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Review: Attachments by Rainbow Rowell

AttachmentsAttachments by Rainbow Rowell
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Current Goodreads Rating: 3.97

"Hi, I'm the guy who reads your e-mail, and also, I love you . . . "

Beth Fremont and Jennifer Scribner-Snyder know that somebody is monitoring their work e-mail. (Everybody in the newsroom knows. It's company policy.) But they can't quite bring themselves to take it seriously. They go on sending each other endless and endlessly hilarious e-mails, discussing every aspect of their personal lives.

Meanwhile, Lincoln O'Neill can't believe this is his job now- reading other people's e-mail. When he applied to be "internet security officer," he pictured himself building firewalls and crushing hackers- not writing up a report every time a sports reporter forwards a dirty joke.

When Lincoln comes across Beth's and Jennifer's messages, he knows he should turn them in. But he can't help being entertained-and captivated-by their stories.

By the time Lincoln realizes he's falling for Beth, it's way too late to introduce himself.

What would he say . . . ?

Characters: Honestly, the characters in this book are really boring and a little pathetic.  Beth and Jennifer have a few funny conversations via email about common girl things, but that's really the only parts I sorta chuckled at.  For the most part, I didn't like Beth because she stayed with her boyfriend who could not have cared less about her.  On the other hand, I didn't like Lincoln because he spent most of his time moping around his mom's house, pining for a girl he had never met in real life but only knew through reading her private emails.

Plot: The plot is quite interesting because it is about falling for someone who you can't see, so it's about liking someone for them and not their looks.  Meanwhile, the way in which Lincoln learns about Beth is pretty creepy, and I don't know how realistic this love story is.  That's like falling in love with your stalker.

Am I the only one who hates the endings of all of Rainbow Rowell's books?  Besides Landline, I've read them all and they all have left me disappointed.  It feels like they don't finish.  The books end too abruptly, especially Attachments.

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Review: Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins

Isla and the Happily Ever After (Anna and the French Kiss, #3)Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Hopeless romantic Isla has had a crush on introspective cartoonist Josh since their first year at the School of America in Paris. And after a chance encounter in Manhattan over the summer, romance might be closer than Isla imagined. But as they begin their senior year back in France, Isla and Josh are forced to confront the challenges every young couple must face, including family drama, uncertainty about their college futures, and the very real possibility of being apart.

Featuring cameos from fan-favorites Anna, Étienne, Lola, and Cricket, this sweet and sexy story of true love—set against the stunning backdrops of New York City, Paris, and Barcelona—is a swoonworthy conclusion to Stephanie Perkins’s beloved series.

Characters: I always love the way Stephanie Perkins creates realistic and relatable characters.  So, I didn't like Isla and Josh as much as I liked Anna and Etienne or even Lola and Cricket because they didn't have wit like those guys.  I didn't find myself laughing at all, but feeling sad.  Possibly more sad than while reading Anna and the French Kiss.  

What I liked most about Isla was her lack of confidence.  It seems to me that everybody goes through a point in their life where they aren't sure of who they are or what they want.  Isla is relatable in this way, and if you don't feel any sympathy for her, there is something wrong with you.

Josh is the brooding artist that you fall in love with.  He is much more emotional than the series' other heroes.  I loved the way that he showed how much he cared about Isla by creatively using his talents.

Plot: First, I liked that Isla and Josh were more how do I phrase this?  They were more adventurous in pursuing their desire for each other?  Basically, I  liked that there was a really subtle sex scene in the story because it gives the book genuineness.

Next, I thought that Isla and Josh got together too quickly.  Where was the tension, the buildup leading to the epic get together?  I feel like the majority of the book was the fallout, and therefore I wasn't motivated to read it.  I usually finish a book by Stephanie Perkins within a day because I'm hooked, but I started this one and then picked it up after a few months and finished it on a 7 hour train ride.  Even then, it took awhile to get through.

Additional comments: The best part of the book was finding out how tall Etienne is.  Hands down, that is the best part.

Though I liked Isla, my expectations were too high.  This was my least favorite of the series.

Stephanie came to two of my local bookstores while on tour.  She has never come here before, and of course she comes when I am away at college.  Nonetheless, I pre ordered the book from my closest indie, and I ended up getting this bag too.  Yay, unfortunately the cat was not included.

Photo from Stephanie Perkins' blog

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I'm back!

Guess who's back, back, back again? Moi! Finals ended this week, and after a long travel day I've returned home.  The only reading I did while I was at school was readings for classes, especially the book class. If you want a sleep inducer, I'll tell you about those readings.

Now that I'm home, I'm free to go back to blogging and reading for fun. So exciting. I finished Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins on the train back, so hopefully that will be up tomorrow.  

If I have any viewers left, thanks for reading!

X Carly

Monday, December 15, 2014

Release Day Launch: Inspire by Cora Cormack

Inspire RDL Banner  

We are so incredibly excited to be able to bring you the Release Day Launch for Cora Carmack's INSPIRE! INSPIRE is a New Adult Paranormal Romance novel and the first book in her new Muse Series!! Holy canoli, y'all. Go out and get this today!


Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes | Kobo

About INSPIRE: Kalliope lives with one purpose. To inspire. As an immortal muse, she doesn’t have any other choice. It’s part of how she was made. Musicians, artists, actors—they use her to advance their art, and she uses them to survive. She moves from one artist to the next, never staying long enough to get attached. But all she wants is a different life— a normal one. She’s spent thousands of years living lie after lie, and now she’s ready for something real. Sweet, sexy, and steady, Wilder Bell feels more real than anything else in her long existence. And most importantly… he’s not an artist. He doesn’t want her for her ability. But she can’t turn off the way she influences people, not even to save a man she might love. Because in small doses, she can help make something beautiful, but her ability has just as much capacity to destroy as it does to create. The longer she stays, the more obsessed Wilder will become. It’s happened before, and it never turns out well for the mortal. Her presence may inspire genius. But it breeds madness, too.   Inspire Teaser 3 Excerpt: I can feel Wilder’s breath against my lips. More than that, I can see it. The sun has set and the temperature has dropped, and air fogs between us. There’s something about actually seeing it, like our lips are touching, we are touching, despite the distance between. And as we sway from side to side, my heart gradually begins to pick up speed. The strains of guitar music flowing out from the restaurant are nearly indecipherable over the heavy heartbeat in my ears. But Wilder must hear it. His hands are strong on my body, guiding my movements, and I’m practically clay in his palms. We dance, eyes on eyes, lips nearly on lips, and there is lightning beneath my skin each time his body brushes against mine in a new way. His touch is firm, but gentle, never pushing or pressuring, though I can tell from the dark look in his eyes that he’s just as affected as I am. The music shifts, building to a crescendo, and he spins us. My chest pushes tight against his, and I bite back a gasp. I don’t know if it’s the cold or him or some combination of both, but the tips of my breasts are painfully tight. Just the pressure of my bra is enough to rub them raw. I remember the night at his apartment, the way he’d taken his time learning my body. I think of the heat of his mouth on my skin, and the memory alone is enough to make me shiver and clench. He’s back to being business, grown-up Wilder tonight in his button down and glasses. Only now that I know him, it doesn’t seem like such a stark difference. He is neither the straight-laced man nor the tattooed bad boy. Or perhaps he’s both. Regardless of what he’s wearing, Wilder is caring and loyal and strong and so sexy that I’m having trouble remembering why I shouldn’t push him into the backseat of his SUV and crawl on top of him. Inspire Teaser 1   HeadshotAbout Cora Carmack: Cora Carmack is a twenty-something writer who likes to write about twenty-something characters. She's done a multitude of things in her life-- boring jobs (like working retail), Fun jobs (like working in a theatre), stressful jobs (like teaching), and dream jobs (like writing). She enjoys placing her characters in the most awkward situations possible, and then trying to help them get a boyfriend out of it. Awkward people need love, too. Her first book, LOSING IT, was a New York Times and USA Today bestseller.      

Website ** Twitter ** Facebook ** Author Goodreads ** INSPIRE Goodreads


Monday, December 08, 2014

Release Day Launch: Breaking the Rules by Katie McGarry

BTR RDL Banner  

We are so excited to bring you the Release Day launch for Katie McGarry's BREAKING THE RULES! BREAKING THE RULES is a Young Adult contemporary romance published by Harlequin Teen, and is the follow-up book to Katie's PUSHING THE LIMITS. You do not want to miss Noah and Echo's story! Grab it today!

  Breaking the Rules Cover

Amazon ** Barnes & Noble ** Books-A-Million ** Kobo ** iBooks ** Google Play

  BREAKING THE RULES Synopsis: A summer road trip changes everything in this unforgettable new tale from acclaimed author Katie McGarry. For new high school graduate Echo Emerson, a summer road trip out west with her boyfriend means getting away and forgetting what makes her so . . . different. It means seeing cool sights while selling her art at galleries along the way. And most of all, it means almost three months alone with Noah Hutchins, the hot, smart, soul-battered guy who's never judged her. Echo and Noah share everything--except the one thing Echo's just not ready for. But when the source of Echo's constant nightmares comes back into her life, she has to make some tough decisions about what she really wants--even as foster kid Noah's search for his last remaining relatives forces them both to confront some serious truths about life, love, and themselves. Now, with one week left before college orientation, jobs and real life, Echo must decide if Noah's more than the bad-boy fling everyone warned her he'd be. And the last leg of an amazing road trip will turn . . . seriously epic. BTR Teaser 1
And don’t forget to read the first books in the Pushing the Limits Series…
  BRT Teaser 2   Katie McGarry Author PhotoAbout Katie McGarry: Katie McGarry was a teenager during the age of grunge and boy bands and remembers those years as the best and worst of her life. She is a lover of music, happy endings, reality television, and is a secret University of Kentucky basketball fan. Katie is the author of full length YA novels, PUSHING THE LIMITS, DARE YOU TO, CRASH INTO YOU, TAKE ME ON, BREAKING THE RULES, and NOWHERE BUT HERE and the e-novellas, CROSSING THE LINE and RED AT NIGHT. Her debut YA novel, PUSHING THE LIMITS was a 2012 Goodreads Choice Finalist for YA Fiction, a RT Magazine's 2012 Reviewer's Choice Awards Nominee for Young Adult Contemporary Novel, a double Rita Finalist, and a 2013 YALSA Top Ten Teen Pick. DARE YOU TO was also a Goodreads Choice Finalist for YA Fiction and won RT Magazine’s Reviewer’s Choice Best Book Award for Young Adult Contemporary fiction in 2013.

Website | Twitter @KatieMcGarry | Facebook | Goodreads | Pinterest | Tumbler | Instagram


Monday, December 01, 2014

Blg Tour (Excerpt): The Union by T.H. Hernandez

After global warming and a second civil war devastated the former United States, two different societies rose from the ashes – the Union, a towering high-tech utopia, hugging the perimeter of the continent, and the devastated, untamed midsection known as the Ruins.
Seventeen-year-old Evan Taylor has an easy, privileged life in the Union. What she doesn’t have is any idea what to do with the rest of her life. She only knows she wants to do something meaningful, to make a difference in the lives of others.
When she’s kidnapped and taken into the Ruins as a pawn in a dispute involving her boyfriend, Bryce, her ideal world is turned upside down. What she learns while in the Ruins shakes her faith in everything she’s ever known, from Bryce, to her family, and even the Union itself.
Now Evan must choose whether to stay with Cyrus, the sexy, resourceful survivor who believes she’s in the Ruins for a reason, or return to the only life she’s ever known. But when she stumbles upon a dangerous plot that threatens both worlds, her decision could tear her apart.

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Sonia, Marcus, and Cyrus are escorting me back to the Union. We’re leaving after breakfast, and I’m trying to ignore the growing sensation that I’m not ready to go. My parents must be worried sick, but this place and these people own a piece of me now, too.
After stripping the sheets from the bed, I take one last look around what has been my home for the past several weeks. My time here has transformed me in ways I still don’t fully understand. Maybe I still haven’t found my purpose, but I believe I’m closer than ever.
With a small sigh, I turn and walk downstairs, dropping the sheets by the back door with the rest of the laundry before entering the kitchen.
Sonia is at the counter making tea while Lucien and Draya talk in low tones in the corner, Lucien rubbing Draya’s arms. Marcus leans against the counter, his features pinched.
In the living room, little Connor, one of Ally’s brothers, is curled up with a blanket on the couch next to his sister, and she appears to be crying. Fear rolls through me like a wave – something is very wrong.
Cyrus is nowhere to be seen and neither is Ally’s other brother, Ty, sending prickles up my spine. I walk over to Sonia. “What’s going on?”
“It’s Ty.” Tension colors her light brown eyes.
“What happened?”
“He’s sick, very sick.”
“I think he has pneumonia.”
“Oh my God! What is your problem?” Draya snaps at me from across the kitchen. “People in the Union don’t get sick?”
I turn to face her, ready to say something cutting when I see her face. The fear in her eyes chokes the words off before they reach my tongue. “Yes, but not often.” I turn back to Sonia. “What can you do for him?”
“We can’t do anything.” Draya answers. “I’m sorry if it delays your return to your precious Union.”
“You really think that’s what I’m worried about?” Her expression is defiant before she turns away. “You can’t do anything for him, no medicine you can give him?” I ask Sonia.
“We can’t afford the medicine he needs.” She moves to the stove as the tea kettle whistles.
“There is something he can take, though?” Hope buds.
“It’s expensive,” Lucien says.
“How much?”
Lucien rubs the back of his neck. “More than we have.”

T.H. Hernandez Bio:

When not visiting the imaginary worlds inside my head, I live in San Diego, California, with one husband, three children, two cats, and one dog. In addition to my day job as a technical writer and editor, I write young adult fiction. I love the intensity of teen emotions and the way they're still figuring out life.

When I'm not writing, you can find me with my nose in a book, hanging out with family and friends, hiking, or knitting. I'm obsessed with Facebook, young adult novels, bad lip reading videos, pumpkin spice lattes, microbrewed beers, and the San Diego Chargers.