When his parents named him Herbert Lincoln James, they already had expectations that Linc would attend an ivy league university and go into politics. Linc didn't. As captain of his swim team, he was expected to win the big relay to carry his swim team to the state championship for the first time in decades. Linc didn’t. Society expected him to walk past her. He couldn’t.
She expected him to see through her.
She expected him to make her into a joke.
She expected him to be cruel.
Expectations are a funny thing …
Alexandria Sure is an avid reader and has written her first novel as homage to fans of the genre she loves. She hopes others will appreciate her novel as much as she enjoyed writing it.
Sure follows the work of several authors and feels she has benefited from reading and commenting on their author pages on Facebook. This has given her the opportunity to get to know the people behind the characters she has grown to love. She hopes her readers will check out her Facebook page so she can get to know them and pay it forward.
Sure is from Michigan and adores her supportive family, her deaf rescue pup and her mighty Spartans. Her experiences in writing her first novel have revealed the true meaning in Jack Canfield's quote, "Everything you want is on the other side of fear."
The only way to learn the secret . . . is to press play.
Clay Jensen returns home from school to find a strange package with his name on it lying on his porch. Inside he discovers several cassette tapes recorded by Hannah Baker—his classmate and crush—who committed suicide two weeks earlier. Hannah's voice tells him that there are thirteen reasons why she decided to end her life. Clay is one of them. If he listens, he'll find out why.
Clay spends the night crisscrossing his town with Hannah as his guide. He becomes a firsthand witness to Hannah's pain, and as he follows Hannah’s recorded words throughout his town, what he discovers changes his life forever.
Jay Asher has written a book that touches on a very important subject and he made sure it resonated with everybody who read it. That being said, when I tried to read it a few years ago I couldn’t get into it. With the release of the show on Netflix I decided to give it a second shot but had to watch the first couple episodes before I could really get into the book.
This book is about teen suicide and it is a unique take on it. In this book the main character is technically dead and she has left tapes with 13 reasons (people) who led to her suicide. You are reading about one person listening to these tapes and their take on what he is being told. What makes this book so unique is what happens to the characters after they listen to these tapes.
Now, while I truly enjoyed the book I liked the show so much better. So let’s get into this topic. I felt like the book was more rushed. The listener fly’s through the tapes without truly showing any emotions in the book. While you get a little bit of the characters feelings coming through in the book everything is larger in the show. In the show the listener takes days to listen to all the tapes because he is so torn up over what he is listening too. You actually see the other characters reacting to what they had heard and listened to.
Now that you have a slight comparison on the book vs the tv show let’s move on. I loved the characters and the plot blew me away. This is a book and show that I feel everybody should read. It is a topic you don’t see a ton of books on and there should be more in my opinion. While the flow of the book worked it did move a little slow for my liking. Jay’s writing style was also interesting.
Needless to say that this is an extremely well written book. It is on a very different and strong topic and you should pick it up and read it now.
They possess the power to make their dreams come true—but it won’t be easy.
Preston Knight—Elvis to his friends—loves being a vampire. The night he was turned was the first step to him becoming the kind of man he always hoped to be. Now, he’s a rock star. What could be better? But the one thing that would make his world complete is just out of reach. The woman he yearns for has some serious secrets, and despite him knowing that she wants him just as much as he wants her, she won’t let him in.
Lily Gray never asked to be a vampire. The choice was taken from her eons ago, and things never improved. Now, she finds herself peddling drugs on the streets of San Francisco and playing the part of doting wife to a possessive and sadistic vampire with delusions of grandeur. But family means everything to Lily, and she’s willing to sacrifice everything for it…even her one chance at happiness with the sexy-as-sin vampire who sets her heart ablaze.
When one night of passion opens the door for a century of secrets to be revealed, Lily and Preston must fight for not only what they believe in but also what they love.
“It’s up to you, Elvis.” Lincoln, the dealer, nodded in my direction and waited. I kept my eyes trained on the center of the table where chips sat in a small pile. I didn’t need to look at my cards again. I knew what I had: an eight and a queen of hearts.
There were six vampires at the table, counting both Gage and me. Gage had folded right after the deal, and so had one of the other players. I was the last to bet, and sometimes, I liked to spice things up a bit, so I matched the bet and sat back.
Heavy smoke hung in the air like delicate streams of fog, swirling in circled patterns under the light hanging from a long cord above the table. Four other lights hung on fixtures attached to the otherwise stark, tawny brown walls. Even with all the lights, the room seemed dark.
Maybe it was the darkness of the souls in the room. I wasn’t sure.
A droning sound buzzed from outside, a little annoying, but I managed to drown it out as I nonchalantly watched the faces around the table as the dealer revealed the flop.
The first card the dealer turned up was a jack of hearts, then a nine of hearts.
It was raining hearts for some reason, and I held two of them already. I held my breath, waiting for the third card in the flop. Crap, an eight of diamonds.
Not exactly what I was looking for, but a pair of eights with a queen high wasn’t completely a loss so I decided to hang in there and see if one more heart would show. There were still two cards to go, and a flush was possible.
I kept my eyes straight, my thoughts blank—or I tried—like I usually did as each card was revealed, always attempting to keep my composure, never deviating from the norm, not wanting to give away my emotions. I was an expert at reading people. Especially in a poker game. A blink of an eye, a slight twitch, a swallow, the slightest movement, anything…different could give someone’s hand away. I wanted to reach up and finger my shades that sat on top of my head. Just one little nudge and they’d be sitting comfortably on my face, shielding my eyes. But not only were dark glasses frowned upon in this high-stakes game of Texas Hold ’em, but any movement out of the ordinary might tip someone off about my cards.
This wasn’t our normal gathering with my brothers at the mansion. This was a high roller, unsanctioned but heavily guarded poker game with some seriously high-powered city officials that I’d bet my right nut were a drug cartel of some sort or another. The two thugs in the monkey suits positioned on either side of the door to the entrance had stood like statues most of the night; the bulge of a holster protruding from under their jackets an obvious clue. At least they were on the outside of the room, but they still remained at the ready if their services were required.
Gage and I didn’t normally seek out games with such high stakes, but he’d been bored lately, and when he ran into Lincoln—the game’s host—at Club Royal a couple of weeks ago, Lincoln had invited Gage and me to join. Said they’d recently lost two of their regulars and needed a couple of fill-ins.
When Gage approached me, I’d shrugged him off at first, not wanting any part of something that sounded so sketchy, but after he’d pestered me for the entire week, I finally gave in, needing a distraction from the long hours—sometimes days apart—from Lily, the sexy and sweet vampire I’d been trying to get to know better. Except, she was either playing hard to get, or just wasn’t that interested in me. Though I had a difficult time believing the latter of those two options since she continued to meet me whenever she had the time or, in her words, “could get away.” Away from what, I hadn’t been able to find out. Yet.
Getting thoughts of Lily off my mind was nearly impossible Her fair, silky-smooth skin; her mesmerizing dark coffee eyes that could hold my gaze for hours on end; the tips of her long, thick locks kissing the cleavage of her breasts where my lips longed to skim. I managed to clear my head just in time, as it was my turn to bet again. I slid my bet forward, raising the pot three thousand for appearance’s sake. In truth, without another heart or a ten, I had squat. I didn’t think the pair of eights would cut it. I had an excellent chance for a straight or a flush if either of the next two cards went my way. Since Gage had already folded, he sat still as a statue beside me, his hands together on the edge of the table. I knew he was busting a gut wondering what I held in my hand.
There were only four of us left in this hand, and I didn’t want to go home with a loss. Not against these guys. Two of them sat puffing on brown cigarettes, looking rather tough. They were tough, the sort who would drain the blood from a homeless person and leave them to die in the gutter without so much as a “thank you, ma’am.” Particularly, the one at the end with the light brown wool Stetson on his head. The word dangerous exuded from his pores. He wore that hat pulled low on his brow, shading his eyes just enough to where it was legal but not enough to reveal much about him. A neatly trimmed goatee graced his chin and his upper lip. A long ponytail made of cornrow braids hung down his back. He seemed on edge, or maybe it was just an act to throw me off.
Which he did when he raised another five thousand. That was steep, and the other two guys folded. Either the guy had something powerful, or he was bluffing his ass off and had nothing. Since I had the queen of hearts, I knew he couldn’t have a royal flush. But that didn’t rule out a straight or four of a kind. The bald-headed guy next to him folded, as did the next two. Now it was up to me, and six thousand was just about all I had left, so I shoved the entire stack I had into the middle of the table.
“I’m all in,” I said with feigned confidence.
After all the bets had been matched, the dealer flipped the fourth card.
A fucking nine of spades.
I watched out of the corner of my eye as cowboy hat’s mouth curved up on one side, the tip of his fang biting into his lower lip. Could mean he was nervous. Or cocky. Either way, my hand was dead unless a ten or another heart showed up.
My heart skipped a beat when the fifth card was flipped over. There it was, sparkling as if someone had lit it on fire. I managed to keep my composure as I chilled, though I could have sworn I heard fireworks go off outside.
The beautiful ten of hearts.
Stetson vamp chuckled and said, “Too bad. You played a nice hand.” Then he laid down his cards. A pair of nines, giving him four of a fucking kind, which would beat most hands. When he started to grab at the pile of chips, I cleared my throat.
“Hold on there, space cowboy,” I heard myself say, not sure if the cockiness in my voice would help or hinder, but that pile of chips in the center of the table belonged to me, and there was no fucking way I was letting this douche have them. I had a fucking straight flush, queen high. Beat that you fucking cocksucker. I wanted to gloat but managed to keep my cool and simply turned the two cards in my hand over and placed them face up on the table.
His face paled, if that were possible. His dark-stubbled jaw flexed. His eyes narrowed to slits. His left ear twitched, and he placed both his palms on the table as he stood, glaring at me. Everyone sitting around the table stiffened. The chips lay in a heap in the middle. He kept his large ebony eyes on mine, never faltering. I allowed myself to stare right back, not moving a centimeter. I was good at stare-out games. I’d had a cat, many in fact, and we constantly played this game. Stetson hat was no different in my mind. Though I was positive he thought differently. This guy was too fucking arrogant for my taste. I’d wondered from the moment I sat down if he was going to be trouble.
“Jace, you ready?” he barked.
The guy at the end of the table—Jace, I assumed—nodded. “Yep, I’m all tapped out. Ladies.”
Stetson hat shrugged into a light brown wool coat, generously embellished with dark brown fur at the lapel, all the while keeping his eyes glued to me. “Be sure to join us again. I look forward to the opportunity to win that back.” His eyes briefly averted to the large pile of chips in the middle of the table before returning to mine, and then he touched the rim of his hat and nodded like he was fucking Clint Eastwood. “Gentlemen.” He kept his lips tight as he turned and walked out. Stopping by another vampire on his way, he looked down at him, made some sort of gesture with his hand, and left the room. Jace, and two other large vampires went with him.
Gage cleared his throat. “Fuck, man. That was intense.” The three dudes left at the table all sighed heavily.
The vampire that Stetson hat had gestured to stood up. “Roach would like you to join him at his employer’s mansion.” Roach? What the fuck kind of person names their kid Roach? I almost laughed. The poor guy. No wonder he was so intense. “It is open to you any Friday evening. That is the night they entertain small groups. Midnight. Here’s the address.” He slipped me a card. I glanced down at the etching on the flat piece of metal.
Whatever your pleasure, we’ve got it.
Sweet Towers, Sky Deck.
When the vampire had left, Gage grabbed the card from me. “Shit. Looks like he wants a rematch.”
“Well, he isn’t getting one,” I retorted and threw the fancy card down on the table. This was over right now. I didn’t want any part of whatever the fuck that guy was dealing.
“I wouldn’t be so quick to pass on that invite if I were you, Elvis,” Lincoln, the vampire who’d hosted the night’s game, said. “That vampire works for Sweet, one of this city’s most dominant and influential business owners. He has the support of the local labor board, as well as several other highfalutin bigwigs in the city. It’s quite the honor to be invited, even if it was by his right-hand man. Sweet doesn’t give out invitations to his private parties very often. And his parties don’t have anything to do with card games, if you get my drift. Roach must have liked you.” He winked.
I raised my eyebrows up at Lincoln in question.
“You know. Sex, drugs. Those kinds of parties. Group or single, whatever you desire, so I’ve heard.”
Whatever kind of parties, I wasn’t into group sex or drugs. I had a woman, or at least a woman I wanted, as the vision of Lily’s striking brown eyes set against her smooth, deep black hair floated through my mind. I got to my feet and shrugged into my coat. “Come on, Gage, let’s split.”
Susan Griscom writes paranormal and contemporary romance. She's hooked on sexy romances and is a huge fan of superheroes and bad boys confronted with extraordinary forces of nature, powers, and abilities beyond the norm mixed with steamy romance, of course.
She loves those days when she gets to sit around in her sweat pants, doing nothing but writing emotionally charged stories about love and violence.
She lives in Northern California in wine country and one of her favorite weekend excursions is wine tasting with the love of her life. Together, she and her romantic husband have five great superhero kids and eight mini-superhero grand kids, so far.
Seventeen years ago, an eclipse cloaked the kingdom of Relhok in perpetual darkness. In the chaos, an evil chancellor murdered the king and queen and seized their throne. Luna, Relhok’s lost princess, has been hiding in a tower ever since. Luna’s survival depends on the world believing she is dead.
But that doesn’t stop Luna from wanting more. When she meets Fowler, a mysterious archer braving the woods outside her tower, Luna is drawn to him despite the risk. When the tower is attacked, Luna and Fowler escape together. But this world of darkness is more treacherous than Luna ever realized.
With every threat stacked against them, Luna and Fowler find solace in each other. But with secrets still unspoken between them, falling in love might be their most dangerous journey yet.
With lush writing and a star–crossed romance, Reign of Shadows is Sophie Jordan at her best.
I have been struggling to figure out what I wanted to say about this book. I thought maybe if I finished the second book it might help. It didn't, so don't mind the crazy mesh of randomness that may follow.
So first, this book follows Luna, the lost princess of Relhok, as she begins a journey from hiding to freedom. You also meet Fowler who fled Relhok and doesn't really want a new travel companion. When Luna saves Fowler and the two kids traveling with him from dwellers things start happening fast.
The plot is an interesting one. It starts out really, really slow and I did struggle to get into it at first but once you really get into the story the pace picks up. The characters were unique and the plot was full of twists and turns. I enjoyed the authors writing style and truly look forward to reading more by her.
There's something achingly familiar about Daniel Grigori.
Mysterious and aloof, he captures Luce Price's attention from the moment she sees him on her first day at the Sword & Cross boarding school in sultry Savannah, Georgia. He's the one bright spot in a place where cell phones are forbidden, the other students are all screw-ups, and security cameras watch every move.
Even though Daniel wants nothing to do with Luce--and goes out of his way to make that very clear--she can't let it go. Drawn to him like a moth to a flame, she has to find out what Daniel is so desperate to keep secret . . . even if it kills her.
Dangerously exciting and darkly romantic, Fallen is a page turning thriller and the ultimate love story.
I have read this book previously but with the movie coming to the United States at some point (soon I hope) I wanted to reread it. Since all of my books (yes I own the series) are in storage I decided I would buy the audio book. I wound up buying the entire series in audio book format for less than $10 and wound up with an ARC copy of Torment (book 2) as well.
Needless to say I got into this book remembering the general story line and character names but that's about it. It was like reading the book for the first time and I loved it. I instantly fell back in love with the story and the characters.
There is a lot happening in this book and somehow it all flows really well and forms a great story. I enjoy Lauren's writing style as well. Now the narrator. I enjoyed the way Justine told this story. I feel like the narration was lacking something. I feel like maybe dual narration (male and female) would have been better. But Justine did a great job in making sure you could tell who was talking.
I look forward to continuing my reread of this series. It's been so long since I read the series that it will be like reading the series for the first time again. 4.5 stars
Carmen Kennedy finally feels normal. Enrolled in college, she’s making a few friends and taking life one day at a time. Her days are filled with classes, studying, and attempting to be more social, while her nights are filled with terrifying dreams. All of her nightmares have one thing in common: him. She can’t see his face, but a flash of dark feathers is all it takes to remind her of The Keeper of Crows. He isn’t supposed to be real.
There is a world that exists beneath the fabric of our own, a torturous place filled with despair. The Keeper is there; Carmen just has to find out why and if there is a way to help him leave that place. Her sanity and life will be threatened, but she can’t ignore his screams any longer.
When love exists, it doesn’t matter the distance. It finds a way to remind you.
Will love be enough to save Michael and Carmen when The Keeper of Souls stands in their way?
Award-winning author Casey L. Bond resides in Milton, West Virginia with her husband and their two beautiful daughters. When she’s not busy being a domestic goddess and chasing her baby girls, she loves to write young adult and new adult fiction.
You can find more information about Bond’s books via the following links:
The Jacuzzi tub is not quite up to Olympian standards, but the hot, churning water feels amazing. In a way, the turbulence reminds me of what my life has become. In little more than a year, I’ve gone from being a high school senior to an angel—a member of the angelic royal family, to be precise.
My transformation has brought with it a fair share of adventures—I killed a fallen angel. I healed my best friend from what would have been a fatal knife wound, turning her into an angel in the process. I fell in love with a Warrior angel, blissfully committing myself to him in a traditional angelic binding, only to see him nearly killed the very next day. Then I healed him—triggering a genetic change that made us the most powerful angels in existence. We are like two halves of a raging star. We are the most lethal creatures ever to walk the mortal worlds. We can fly like eagles, bend light to our will, and fill the sky with terrifying bolts of lightning. We hold the power of Thor’s hammer in our hands. We are the wrath of God. And it’s a good thing we are because fallen angels have declared war.
“There is nothing the Irish love more than a good story. But this…this tops them all,” Fiona says, as she pours me a second cup of coffee. Freshly showered and dressed comfortably in a halter top over spandex running pants, I scan my surroundings. The kitchen is small, but comfortable, and we’re still invisible behind a staged loop of security footage. I can’t help smiling at her enthusiasm, but its’s a bittersweet smile, because it’s nearly two in the morning, which means I get to play with Angela in about seven hours. “I’m not sure if I’ll be able to fight through the pain.”
Fiona leans forward, resting her elbows on the table. “I wish I could get you out of here tonight, but we need to take care of the implant. For our escape to succeed, you need to be at full strength.”
My patience is wearing thin. What if Fiona can’t get a remote? What if she can’t sneak a surgeon into my chambers? “How long before the security system comes back on?”
Fiona gives me a puzzled look. “I’m not sure. Any time between now and five o’clock. We’ll get a ten-minute heads up. Why do you ask?”
“I’m going to try to access my abilities.”
Fiona shakes her head vigorously. “That’s not a good idea, Ari.”
She’s probably right. I stand, crossing my arms over my chest. “So, are you going to help me or do I do this alone?”
“I have to try.”
“You are one very headstrong angel,” she says with a smirk.
Sitting on the toilet lid, I stare at a small plastic wastebasket across the room. My objective is to knock it over without touching it, and in order to do that, I’ll need to use the Essence—which is going to trigger the implant, causing me a world of pain.
“You'll never plow a field by turning it over in your mind,” Fiona says, with a smirk.
“Ha. You have no idea how much pain Angela’s little gizmo puts out. Now, quiet…I need to concentrate.”
Redoubling my efforts, I hyper focus on the basket. Breathe. I feel the familiar rush as the Essence collects in my cells, filling me with a pulsing energy—a force that begs to be released. But there is resistance. Something is impeding the outward flow, I think, as a wave of pain builds inside me. Thrusting a washcloth into my mouth, I bite down hard. A muffled roar rumbles from deep inside me as the pain intensifies. Fiona moves into my line of sight, her face twisted in panic. “Let it go, Ari! Release it…”
“Too much energy…MOVE” I shout, because I know it’s going to be bad. Really bad.
I release the beast inside me, because it can no longer be contained. Time slows down and I’m nothing more than a helpless observer, watching as the basket I’d been so intently focused on begins to vibrate. No, it’s not the basket…it’s the entire room. I scan my surroundings, trying to find Fiona, but a roiling cloud of debris obscures my vision. I made a hurriquake, I think, which causes me to giggle…and then an overwhelming sense of relief washes over me, because the pain is gone...and so is Fiona.
Fiona? I didn’t kill her!
I slowly rise to my feet, hanging onto the sink for support. Fiona is sitting, propped up against the far wall of the main room, pointing furiously behind me. I turn. People are jogging up the hall, past still bodies, toward me. I can see them because the wall is gone. What the…
A strong hand grips my arm and I pivot to break the vice-like grip, but I have no strength left. “Stay still or this will really hurt,” a chillingly familiar voice says.
“No!” I hear Fiona shout, but she’s being restrained by two huge angels. “Don’t hurt her!”
Before I can react or respond, a sharp prick causes me to flinch, as a needle enters the tender skin at the base of my neck.
“Goodnight, princess,” Eloy says with an evil chuckle.
When it comes to being a husband and wife (or wife and husband) writing team, there are advantages, or benefits. Chief among them is that you get to practice the love scenes. He writes, she steers, and…well, it’s fun. He is a software designer and she is a doctor of education. AJ and CS Sparber live in the lovely town of Hudson, Ohio, with their son Ryan, their daughter Melanie, and the spirit of an Aussie shepherd named Hunter.