Posted in Book Review

Review: Scarlet Huntress by LeAnn Mason

Title: Scarlet Huntress
Series: Tales of Grimm Hollow Series
Author: LeAnn Mason
Publication Date: October 29, 2019

6699BA32-6BDF-4292-97DA-B615D0AF7DC9

Summary:

The woods have always housed my nightmares.

It’s where my grandmother was torn apart by wolves. Where, for years, I was held captive by evil shape-shifting witches. I thought it was for my Shaman abilities. I was wrong.

But their ritual failed. Instead of dying, I survived, while another’s blood stained the forest floor.

In my escape, I discovered Grimm Hollow—a place deep in the forest in which I hoped to hide. The secret town teems with magic and a Shifter who wants to help me hone my skills. But the big, bad witchy-wolf is hot on my scarlet tail, and he won’t hesitate to destroy everyone and everything to get me back—or kill me.

Hiding is no longer an option. Instead, I must become the hunter.

Bring on the big, bad wolf.

*Grimm Hollow books are loosely based on the Grimm Fairy Tales in a modern paranormal setting.*

ADD TO GOODREADS
PREORDER AT AMAZON

My Review:
Scarlet goes from a victim to a strong, determined huntress. Watching her grow, along with her feelings for Hunter/Jason was fascinating and swoon inducing.

Grimm Hollow is such an interesting place with so many fascinating characters!! I am looking forward to more stories taking place there!!

LeAnn does an extraordinary, breathtaking job with world building and writing her characters. She describes enough to stir your imagination, but not so much to take that away. Her writing is phenomenal. This is definitely a favorite overall and for 2019!! I look forward to the next book in Grimm Hollow!!!

 

Posted in Release Blitz

Release Blitz: To WAKE The DEAD by Sarah Lampkin

ToWaketheDead

Join us in wishing author Sarah Lampkin, a very happy book birthday! Today marks the release of To Wake the Dead, book #2 in her Dead Dreamer series! Read on for more details, and an exclusive excerpt from the book!

Psst!!! There’s also a giveaway bundle! Make sure you enter below!

TWTD-bk1.jpg

To Wake the Dead (Dead Dreamer #2)

Publication Date: October 8th, 2019 (Today!!!)

Genre: NA Fantasy

Publisher: The Parliament House

Brenna Whit teeters the line between the living and the dead. Now that she’s back for her sophomore year at Nephesburg College, she’s determined to focus on the waking world. But when her own soul is trying to kill her and a new Dead Dreamer is fighting for power, Brenna is dragged back into the world of the dead.

The Gatekeepers are doing everything they can to restore the power they once held over the town of Nephesburg. With a mysterious set of twins arriving in town to help them prepare, Brenna must decide what’s important: continuing to hide her secret or reveal herself and fight for what she believes is right. The decision could end up leading to a permanent death for Brenna so she must choose wisely.

Classes have begun…
The battlefield is set…
Let the fight for the Fade begin.

Add to Goodreads

Excerpt

“Who wrote the laws saying that doorways must be sealed? Who told you to create another one of you?”

“The church.”

“Why?” He was silent. For once, he had no answer. He merely stared at me not blinking or unwavering as his eyes locked on mine. I thought I had him; nowhere in the Bible did it say to interfere with the dead or the other side. In fact, the Scripture scorned it. If I remembered correctly, that would border on witchcraft and necromancy, which was forbidden. So, if Wilson were the type to follow the Bible no matter what, then these questions just pushed his logic out the window. Even if the church said he had to do those things, who was to say they were right?

Available Here

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Parliament House Press

 

MY REVIEW

 

To Dream is to Die (Book #1)To Dream is to Die.v2

Eighteen-year-old Brenna Whit is entering college as a freshman and starting to meet new people, but she hides a dark secret. Because of an accident that happened three years ago, her spirit wanders the Fade whenever she falls asleep. It’s something she wants to keep hidden from the world, but when she sees someone watching her in spirit form, she fears the secret’s out. With new friends, possibly new enemies, school, and a new crush, Brenna has too much to worry about for just her freshman year of college.

Perfect for those who enjoy Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Supernatural!

Add to Goodreads

Amazon

B & N

Kobo

Parliament House Press

giveaway gif

We’re giving away To Dream is to Die AND To Wake the Dead!!! Click the link below to enter!

*Print Bundle (North America Only)

*Digital Bundle (International)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About the Author

GDTC4RiC

A native of Richmond, Virginia, Sarah Lampkin is a 2015 graduate from Lynchburg College [University of Lynchburg] with a master’s degree in English. Since graduation, Sarah now lives in Northern Virginia working in the IT field as a Technical Writer while continuing her research for her graduate school thesis. When she isn’t working, Sarah continues her Celtic mythology research and Gaelic studies, while working on the Dead Dreamer series.

Dead Dreamer | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Book Blitz Organized By:

R&RButto200x200

R&R Book Tours

Posted in Book Review

Review: Marrow Charm by Kristin Jacques

Title: Marrow Charm
Series: The Gate Cycle
Author: Kristin Jacques
Publication Date: October 1, 2019
Publisher: The Parliament House

FB484223-D85C-4E4B-B284-E64D886190B2

Summary:

In his pursuit of the occult, the Third Reich opened the Gate to a realm of magic and brought the world to ruin. The Gate was eventually closed, but They were already in our world and They were hungry.’

-The Lost History, Library of Avergard

Azure ‘Azzy’ Brimvine lives in a world decimated by magic, where humans have retreated underground from the overwhelming dangers of the surface. But Below is no safer than Above.

Magic borne plagues continue to eat away at the remaining human cities, a sickness that doesn’t merely kill, but creates aberrations from the stricken: people twisted by magic into something dark, dangerous, and powerful. It is an existence of fear and constant dread. When Azzy’s brother, Armin, is infected and cast out into the Above, she sets out after him, determined to be there for him no matter what he becomes.

The world Above is full of monsters, both wild and cunning, some more human than Azzy was led to believe. Armin is captured and bound for the Auction block of Avergard, a ruthless city of inhuman lords and twisted creatures. To reach him, Azzy must brave the perils of the Above and the chaotic life forms created by the Gate. To reach him, she must find allies and forge new bonds in this broken world.

And Azzy must reach him, before Armin’s new power is used to open the Gate once more.

ADD TO GOODREADS
BUY AT AMAZON
BUY AT BARNES & NOBLE

My Review:

This is such an AWESOME book!!!

The world in this book is sooo well written, that I felt like I was there! And there is a lot going on in this world. There is the below, where the story begins, and then there’s the above!!! Neither is safe really. Magic has done a job on the people, mentally and physically. The main character, Azure or Azzy, goes above ground with her guardian, Bixby, to save her younger brother, Armin. Then Azzy is on the journey of a lifetime!! She meets so many characters along the way, but non so dear to her than Kai the wolf. I loved Azzy and Kai, and I can’t wait to read more about them!!!! But I loved so many of the characters, they were written so beautifully. All the details were splayed out to us, so that we are able to imagine them as real and have strong feelings about them, whether good or bad.

I’m not going to tell you too much about the story, because I want you to read it and experience it for yourself. The writing is flawless and story moves along at an even keel, you will be lost to it!! Turn pages one after the other, and not wanting to put it down. I was/am sooo sad it ended. BUT I cannot wait for book two, when Azzy’s journey continues!!

 

Posted in Cover Reveal

Cover Reveal: Veiled By Desire by Candace Robinson

Book Title: Veiled By Desire
Series: Laith Series Book 2
Author: Candace Robinson
Publisher: The Parliament House

C2BB7175-E094-4650-B2C0-8257F915834B

Book synopsis:

In Laith, when the moons are high, Tavarra is allowed to walk the land as a human for one day, losing her seahorse-like tail. But should she remain out of the water, a curse will overtake her, turning her into a beast with sharp fangs and long claws. A beast that, on some nights, takes the shape of a rampaging, uncontrollable monster.

Rhona, along with her village, are under a sinister leader’s control. Their leader has taken Rhona from the boy she loves, stripped away her abilities and, under the threat of killing everyone she loves, forces her on a dangerous task to retrieve a dark prism that will increase his already massive powers.

When Tavarra and Rhona cross paths, they discover they need each other. Rhona knows how to help the cursed sea creature, while Tavarra knows where to find the dark prism. They embark on a mission that could help them break Tavarra’s spell and save Rhona’s family and village. But with an untamable beast inside Tavarra, nothing is certain…

ADD TO GOODREADS
PREORDER AT AMAZON

D02F9530-1830-45C0-BDC4-DDF1D3792C44My name is Candace Robinson, obviously. I spend my days consumed by words. When I’m not writing stories, I maintain a book review blog—Literary Dust. My life consists of avoiding migraines, admiring Bonsai trees, and living with my husband and daughter in Texas—where it can be forty degrees one day and eighty the next.

Sign up for my newsletter to hear about awesome things! http://eepurl.com/dhV0yv

 

Social Media Tags/Contact:
Instagram: (@literarydust)
Facebook: (@literarydust)
Twitter: (@literarydust)
Website: https://authorcandacerobinson.wordpress.com/

The Parliament House:
IG: (@theparliamentpress)
FB: (theparliamenthouse)
Twitter: (@Parliamentbooks)

Posted in Book Review

Review: Saving Fable by Scott Reintgen

Title: Saving Fable
Series: Talespinners Series
Author: Scott Reintgen
Publication Date: September 17, 2019

587C3C5F-C4CD-47BD-8385-835978CCFAAD

Summary:
Side characters can be heroes too in this charming and fast-paced adventure that is The Land of Stories meets The Phantom Tollbooth!

Indira has been a character-in-waiting her entire life. So she can’t believe her luck when she’s finally chosen to travel to Fable and study at the renowned Protagonist Preparatory, a school known for producing the best heroes.

But Indira’s dreams of achieving hero status don’t exactly go as planned. A failed audition lands her in the school’s side-character track, and her best efforts to prove advisors–famous characters like Alice from Wonderland and Professor Darcy–wrong are constantly sabotaged. Indira is starting to feel like an evil antagonist might be to blame.

As the danger spreads, Indira discovers all of Fable is under siege. With her friends Maxi and Phoenix by her side, she pieces together clues that will reveal who is behind the dark magic threatening them all. But the more Indira uncovers, the more doubt she feels about her place in this world of stories. After all, can a side character really save the day?

GOODREADS
AMAZON
BARNES & NOBLE

My Review:
What a WONDERFUL, FUN book this one is!! I sucked it down so fast!! The story of Indira Story and her chance to be a character in Fable is absolutely delightful!!

Written for young readers, it has a Harry Potter vibe to it. Except what was freakin ingenious was that it is about books being written, characters being chosen to be in them, and it’s a school where the characters study and hope to be chosen by an Author. The world building is so incredible and entertaining! There are bookmarks who are tall, thin, odd characters who walk around talking about the book they’re reading. Then there are DOGears, who run around causing mischief. I mean who wants their book dog eared?!! There is one world, then you look up and there’s another above it!! There are dragon eye transporters to take you up to the other world. Plus the world’s themes keep changing. There’s so much more in this world, it is filled with interesting things!! The characters are so well written, and the plot is adventurous, suspenseful and an exciting ride!!

I would HIGHLY RECOMMEND this book to anyone, old and young!! In fact I ordered a hardback copy for a friend’s daughter and i think she’ll love it!!!!

Posted in Book Review

Review: Unspoken by Celia McMahon

Title: Unspoken
Author: Celia Mcmahon
Series: Unspoken
Publication Date: September 15, 2019

85C638CC-1543-4D05-A5BD-20B68AE5C8DD

Summary:
Set in a kingdom of warring lands, demon curses, and hidden magic, UNSPOKEN is a fantasy for fans of Maggie Stiefvater’s Mercy Falls Series and Sarah J Maas’ Throne of Glass.

“You are unbroken.”

Princess Isabelle of The New Kingdom has lived her entire life in the confines of her palace. She spends her time hunting for the poverty-stricken Voiceless-people of the Old Kingdom who warred with her kingdom and ultimately lost-and dreaming of a world beyond the walls of her home. As the only remaining child of the king and queen, she is to be married off by her eighteenth birthday.

“My father said that magic died long ago. It was evil, cursed, and wicked. My father is a liar.”

When Izzy witnesses the use of forbidden magic in the woods outside the palace, she is attacked, and saved by an unknown man. Soon after she discovers her rescuer is a Voiceless servant in the castle named Fray, she befriends him to seek out the magic users who tried to kill her. Fray agrees to help, but not before Isabelle discovers the servant boy harbors a secret the king has tried to bury-that he is a Gwylis, people of the old Kingdom who made a pact with the demons of the underworld for the power to transform into giant ferocious wolves. But to shift into a beast, Fray must be able to speak the words to do so. If he is to thwart the attackers from killing her entire family, Izzy needs to cure the ailment that took away his voice.

“Sometimes one action-one death-can spur a movement, sway the cosmos, and move the stars.”

But curing Fray holds more danger than she ever thought possible. The lies of her parents and the risk of putting her own life on the line deems as destructive as falling for the servant boy. If Isabelle is to save herself and Fray, she’ll need to face enemy Gwylis, cross paths with usurper kings and princes, and decide what side she is on-human or wolf-or lose her kingdom forever.

“I am fearless.”

GOODREADS
AMAZON
PARLIAMENT HOUSE

Review:
When i read the summary of this book i thought it sounded interesting, but i had NO IDEA what i was in for!!! What a unique and awesome book!!!!!

I want to be careful not to say too much and spoil it for you, but i also want you to know what an amazing book this is!! The concept of the voiceless was so imaginative. I know the author says in the acknowledgements that she came up with this story from a song, and i want to know what song!! Is there a playlist?

The world she built in this book took a lot of imagination, and she portrayed it for us so vividly! I felt as though i was right there with Izzy!!! She is a very four dimensional character, and written so beautifully. My heart really went out to Izzy (Princess Isabelle) and what she’d lost, what her life was like now and what was expected of her in the future!! She has anxiety and works very hard to control it, and tries so hard to be brave.

The other characters in this book were written really well also. Some i really hated and felt myself snarling. Others i really loved, but I’m not spoiling anything by sharing that. Then there are those who i just really felt sorry for.

This book was such a pleasant surprise! I loved it and want it for my bookshelf for sure!! I HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT AND EASILY GIVE IT 5 STARS!!!!!!

Posted in Book Review

Review: Third To Tumble by Alexa Whitewolf

TitleThird To Tumble
AuthorAlexa Whitewolf
Date of Publication: June 21st, 2019

46FB3C1E-E27D-4B40-B192-964C4B88A3ED

Goodreads Summary:

Rules are meant to be broken… Unless breaking them tears an entire family apart.

Finn

I’m the cool headed one. The rule-follower. The non-hormonal-raging wolf.

This pack needs someone like me. We’ve fought creatures of the night, psychotic families and dealt with magic and the unbelievable. We’re all thick as thieves, and the worst thing that could happen is getting kicked out of this pack.

Which is why breaking rules is not my thing.

So why does Elle make me want to throw it all away?

And why is it my stupid, idiotic wolf does exactly that…before I’ve even had a taste of her lips?

Now we’ve got more on our hands than a love story with bad timing. Cause the shite about to go down in Rockland Creek has just hit boiling point – and I’m the catalyst.

Elle

He barges in like he owns my destiny, and yeah it’s hot as sin. That Irish accent, those gorgeous eyes, it’d be easy to fall for the whole package.

Only I don’t. I may look as sweet as the baked goods I sell, but there are thorns under this armor Finn has no idea about. Things he cannot know about, or I’ll end up in the looney bin like my mom. And then things get really complicated when Tytus is added to the mix, telling me stories I can’t believe. They’re fable, myths….but before long I’m spiraling into a web so thick I don’t know which way is up. And when the one person I can trust is hunted by a demon from his past, I’m left to rely on myself to figure it out. But what if I make the wrong choice?

My review:

Is my mouth hanging open? Shut my mouth. Is my mouth hanging open? Shut my mouth! I am in total shock and awe from this book!!! I’ve read the first 2 books and the amount i thought i knew about Finn, wasn’t enough, especially when it came to the shy girl at the bakery he always took an interest in, but never seemed to say much to.

I’ve loved the Moonlight Rogues Series so far. As much as to say, I’m a little obsessed!! Four HOT main guys, who are also four DIFFERENT kinds of werewolves!! It’s very interesting how they all come from different areas and their wolves all have different characteristics because of where they come from. It delves into mythology, and it’s so just unlike any werewolf series you’ve ever read. Alexa does a beautiful job explaining this while keeping the story alive and very active. The story moves along and you get sucked in and do not want to put it down!! With Elle coming into this story, things become VERY interesting!! I loved her character, she was truly unique!! And Finn…sigh…blink, blink (dreamy look) he is the sweetest guy!!!!

I love the way Alexa writes. Her dialogue is written so smoothly and you’re just swept right up in the characters and their story. Her characters!!! Good and bad…all her characters are written with so much depth, that you want to know more and more and more!!! Keep writing, Alexa!!! Now as far as her world building. I have been so impressed up till now, but this book is AMAZING with the world building!!! I felt more so, because there was more opportunity for it. But you could visualize yourself there, smell the smells and feel the texture of the wolves’ fur and the dragon’s scales!!!! FAN-FREAKIN-TASTIC!!!!!!! I’d tell you more you could visualize, but I’m not handing out spoilers.

This book deserves 10 howling stars, but i can only give 5. Just know if i could, I’d double that!!!

I’m looking forward to book 4, with Lucas, the one wolf my heart has been crying to read about…THE LEADER OF THE PACK!!! If you haven’t started this series I highly recommend you give it a try, I guarantee you’ll be hooked!!!

Posted in Book Review, Fantasy, My favorites

Review: Lineage

Title: Lineage
Author: C. Vonzale Lewis
Date of Publication: July 16th, 2019

E4B2CD67-CF89-44A3-A8E0-FD7531A5DF8A

Goodreads Summary:

Smart-mouthed Nicole Fontane has a way of getting herself into trouble. She’s been fired from every job she’s had but still refuses to work in her father’s apothecary shop because of his practice of Earth Magick. On Tulare Island where Nicole grew up, Magick has always been a way of life—one she’s determined to avoid at all costs.

With less than two hundred dollars in the bank and rent due, Nicole is forced to take a job at Tribec Insurance as a last resort. Little does she realize, the moment she sets foot inside the building, she becomes a pawn. A sinister force has set its sights on her and will stop at nothing to use her in a sadistic game.

Tribec’s proprietors, the Stewart family, are curiously preoccupied with the Naqada, the mysterious pre-dynastic Egyptian society. Nicole finds it creepy, but on the bright side, the job reconnects her with her estranged friend, Marta. Yet the eerie atmosphere, disappearing Magick wards, and the smell of blood inside Tribec bring Nicole to a startling conclusion—the Stewarts are practicing Blood Magick, the deadliest of the Five Principles. By the time Nicole uncovers the truth, Marta and her four children have gone missing, and all signs implicate the Stewarts and an archaic blood ritual to an Old One, a Naqada god imprisoned on Tulare Island.

Battling the evil of Blood Magick will demand Nicole to confront a hidden past and unlock the Magick buried within. But can she set aside her deep-rooted fears to work with a team of vigilante Mages? Or will the clock run out on Marta and her children—and on Nicole?

My Review:

THIS WAS THE COOLEST, MOST UNIQUE BOOK THAT I’VE EVER READ!!!!!!! IT WAS AWESOME!!!!!!!!!

To think that this is the author’s debut book, it just blows me away!! It is labeled as Fantasy, but it is so much more than that! It has a little bit of everything. The world building – she writes a world so vividly that i could see it in my mind as if I’d been there. The characters, oh my goodness the characters!! I loved them!! Even the bad ones!! They were just sooo real, so believable!!! The growth we see in especially Nicole’s character is so effective, so moving!! The writing was very impressive, plot flowed smoothly, seamlessly & at a nice pace!! The more i read, the more I could not put the book down!! THE ROMANCE, WOW!!!!! I’d say Nicole has found the one! There was A LOT of hot, sexy guys and some hot, steamy scenes.😍 Nicole must wear some nice perfume, because she was getting all the hot men. Her friend Kara wanted one and couldn’t get him. Anyway this is book one in a series, but no big cliff hanger or anything. Thankfully!! BUT I STILL CAN’T WAIT FOR THE SECOND BOOK!!!!!! I HIGHLY RECOMMEND THIS BOOK!!!!!!!

Posted in My favorites, Release Blitz, Urban Fantasy

Release Day Blitz: CLOUDED BY ENVY by Candace Robinson

54A8A289-C20B-45C8-B85A-13E820C8B04B

I am so excited that CLOUDED BY ENVY by Candace Robinson is available now and that I get to share the news!

If you haven’t yet heard about this wonderful book by Author Candace Robinson, be sure to check out all the details below.

This blitz also includes a giveaway for a $10 Amazon GC courtesy of Candace, The Parliament House Press, and Rockstar Book Tours. So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.

4072930A-5B70-4D63-8613-73F9BAA6F0A4
Title: CLOUDED BY ENVY
Author: Candace Robinson
Pub. Date: February 19, 2019
Publisher: The Parliament House
Formats: Paperback, eBook
Pages: 215
.
.

Find it: GoodreadsAmazonB&NiBooks

Brenik has always been envious of his twin sister, Bray. Growing up as fairy-like creatures, known as bats, everything came easier to Bray. While Brenik spent his time in her shadows, never feeling he was enough. After escaping their world of Laith, and living on Earth for ten years, Brenik attempts to strike a deal with the Stone of Desire to become human. Though true humanity is not an option, he will accept the curse that will alter him to get as close as he can.

Living in a tree trunk for the past year hasn’t been easy for Bray, more so after her brother disappears again. When a human boy and his brother, Wes, find her, a new friendship is struck. Through Wes, Bray learns there can be more to life than waiting within a tree. But worrying over where Brenik has vanished to always remains in the back of her mind.

When Bray reunites with Brenik, she realizes she must help him break the curse after she discovers the need for blood is beginning to overpower him. The curse not only damages those who get close to Brenik, but it could also destroy whatever is blooming between Bray and Wes.

Watch the Book Trailer!

.

Exclusive Excerpt!

​Bray wasn’t sure how long she had drifted off for, but there was a puddle of wetness against her cheek when she woke up—okay, so it was only drool from herself. Lifting a hand up toward her cheek, she swiped the saliva away and rubbed it on to the hammock. Classy, she thought, but there was already some gathered there anyway.

​Remembering the events from earlier, Bray headed straight to the hole and peeked out. She shifted her head from left to right. Nothing. Bray looked up and down—she could see a few bushes had already been planted in the dirt.

​Then she saw it: a circular stone bowl filled with water sitting on top of a long thick stem, attached to a circular bottom. A birdbath! Almost giddily, Bray stepped on the ledge of the hole and leaped off, flapping her wings hurriedly to the nearest pink and yellow peach. Opening her jaw wide, she bit into the thin skin. A juicy one. The fruit filled her mouth with delicious pleasure, and she took one more long bite before diving down to the birdbath.

​The top of her newfound treasure was a perfect circle with tiny mounds around it resembling hills. Bray landed on the ceramic and bent down to take a seat, before placing her bare feet into the warm water that had been perfectly heated from the shining sun.

​Peering down at the clear water, Bray saw no sign of intrusion from other creatures yet. She rotated her head in every direction, as if she would be caught just by thinking about slipping into the water—still no sign of life.

​Flicking her braid over her shoulder, Bray pursed her lips together to hide the smile aching to shine against her face and jumped into the water. The splash echoed. Her bare feet scraped the rough bottom, while her dress inflated and then clung to her body as she shot to the surface. She let out a small giggle to herself. It was sad that the only highlight of the past year was hopping into a shallow pool of water with no one around except for her.

​She leaned back into the liquid, letting herself float and moving her arms slowly up and down, while swimming in figure-eight circles.

​Bray closed her eyes and let the water cover her ears, so it felt like nothing in the world existed, except for the muffled vibrations from the liquid.

​A loud booming sounded from above, and her eyelids thrust open, meeting dark brown eyes, light brown skin, and that black bowl hair. Tiny human. Luca.

​Freeze, Bray thought to herself, not even blinking her eyes. She held them wide open, thinking he wouldn’t notice her, or maybe he would just assume she was a bird. Even though he was staring at her and had spoken something she didn’t hear clearly.

​Nope. That isn’t going to work. He hovered closer, his eyes scrunched halfway closed to examine her more thoroughly. Unable to hold her eyes open any longer, Bray blinked several times.

​“What are you?” he asked, genuine amazement creeping into his words, lips slightly parted.

​“A bat!” Bray yelled, and she jumped up from the warmth of the water, darting straight for the tree hole.

​Breathing heavily, Bray landed inside and collided with the floor. She rolled to her back, running both hands down her face. “Why did I come out without paying attention? I know not to!” Ruth had always told her this.

​A quake trembled through the tree, causing shivers to run up and down her spine. What is the little beast doing? Oh no, what if he is trying to chop down the tree? My home—the peaches! Bray didn’t know why she was thinking about stupid peaches when there was another fruit tree directly next door.

​Despite the thunderous rumbling, Bray grabbed the needle from underneath her hammock and dodged toward the window. If the little beast thought he could take her down, then he had another thing coming. She would prick his eye—actually, she would poke both of his eyes to protect her and Brenik’s home.

​When Bray reached the edge of the window, the sound stopped. She peeped her head out of the hole, right as a face met hers, his black hair falling forward over a hazel eye—an eye she was going to poke. Startled, she jumped back instead of toward him.

​A broad smile crossed the little beast’s face. “Hello.”

​Freezing once again, until she remembered that the staying-still-as-a-statue strategy didn’t work in the birdbath, she meekly said, “Hi.”

​Bray brought the needle up toward his smiling face, just in case.

​“Are you planning on sewing something?” He tilted his head at the needle.

​“Yeah, your eyeball.” She gave him a hard glare.

​“What?” he asked while laughing hysterically.

​He was laughing? Not scared? Bray brought the needle closer. “Yeah, you need to leave and never come back. This is my home.”

​“No. Technically, it’s my brother’s home,” he said, still smiling.

​“What brother? You mean your dad out there who was planting this morning?”

​Luca shook his head, and she didn’t miss the wince before he spoke. “No, that’s my brother, Wes. I don’t have a mom or dad.”

​Crestfallen, Bray lowered the needle. “Oh. Me neither. I only have a brother, but he will be gone for a while.” She paused and glanced at the note Brenik had left behind, her chest tightening. Then she shrugged it off and shifted her gaze back to the boy. “By the way, my name is Brayora, but you can call me Bray.” For some reason, she wasn’t worried anymore about the human.

​“I’m Luca Duran.” He plopped his thin fingers on the edge of the hole.

​“Yeah, I heard your name this morning, little beast. I mean, Luca.” She thought little beast suited him better than Luca.

3DD8D392-170F-4FB0-8F80-413C533C5C7A
About Candace:

My name is Candace Robinson. I’m just your average hemiplegic migraine sufferer. My days are spent writing, book reviewing and traveling through books for my blog, Literary Dust. I live just outside of Houston, Texas, where it feels like the hottest place on Earth with the crazy weather.No, seriously, one day it’s 30 degrees and the next it’s 70 degrees! I live with my husband and awesome daughter!

You can also follow me on my review blog Literary Dust

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Tumblr | Instagram | Goodreads

img_0757

Giveaway Details: All International

1 winner will receive an 10 Amazon Gift Card, International.

Ends on February 28th at Midnight EST!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Posted in Book Release, Book Review, Fantasy, Magic, My favorites, Release Blitz, Young Adult

Book Release & MY REVIEW: Stolen by Marlena Frank

aef16999-c45d-4d28-8ad8-b95300d9ce47

I am so excited that STOLEN by Marlena Frank is available now and that I get to share the news!

If you haven’t yet heard about this wonderful book by Author Marlena Frank, be sure to check out all the details below.

This blitz also includes a giveaway for a $10 Amazon Gift Card, International, courtesy of The Parliament House and Rockstar Book Tours. So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.

8061cd17-9943-43a3-9f1d-f3e4e71f282f

Title: STOLEN (Stolen #1)

AuthorMarlena Frank

Pub. Date: January 22, 2019

PublisherThe Parliament House

Formats: Paperback, eBook

Pages: 342

Find it: GoodreadsAmazonB&NiBooksKobo

It’s difficult taking care of a delusional father by yourself. Sixteen-year-old Shaleigh Mallet would rather explore and photograph dilapidated buildings than cater to her father’s dark episodes. But when she’s kidnapped by a creature who carries her atop a flying bicycle into another world, she realizes this wasn’t the escape she wanted.

In a kingdom known as the Garden, where minotaurs pull carriages and parties are held in hot air balloons, Madam Cloom and her faerie servant, Teagan, rule over the land with incredible but terrifying magic. Shaleigh must prove that she is the reincarnation of a long-dead ruler, not because she believes it, but because it’s her only chance to survive. With the help of a trespassing faerie, a stoatling, and a living statue, Shaleigh hopes to outwit everyone. She aims to break the bonds of servitude and finally make her way home. What she doesn’t realize, however, is that she’s playing right into the hands of a far worse enemy…

.

MY REVIEW

THIS WAS THE MOST UNIQUE, FASCINATING, BRILLIANT STORY!! The world building!!! It is so well written, enough detail that it paints a wonderful picture in the imagination, where you now start building upon it with your own interpretation!! Which to me is perfection! That is what i want from a book. This world where there are Faeries, Minotaurs, Shadow Wolves and Living Statues, etc. is so reminiscent to me of 80s movies that I loved, like Legend, Labyrinth & Return To OZ. BUT at the same time this one really stands on its own!! I would LOVE to see THIS on this big screen…whoa, that would be awesome!!!

As for characters, they were beautifully written!! Dialogue was written so well that the characters were completely believable and you became totally lost in the story!! I loved Shaleigh, the main protagonist!! She’s very believable. She’s strong, but doesn’t know it. I also loved Colin & Mawr!! Mawr, he is something special. There are so many really great characters, whether good or bad, that are just SO WELL WRITTEN!!!

This is one of those books that once you get into the meat of it, especially when Shaleigh gets kidnapped and taken to the Garden, you can’t put it down!!! YOU WILL SOOO LOVE THIS BOOK, especially if fantasy is your thing!!! I can’t wait for the next book!!!

Book Trailer:

.

EXCERT

PART I

FREEFALL

.

AN EMBARRASSMENT

Shaleigh didn’t think about how much concrete and steel stood over her head as she stepped carefully down the decaying hallway of Ferris Factory. The building had been abandoned for so long that the mildew and fungus ran rampant from the moisture that crept down the crumbling walls, so a respirator was a requirement. Ferris Factory was only two stories tall from the outside, but the floors underground felt endless. The elevator shaft only went down three floors when it had been operational; the rest of the floors could only be reached with the stairs. She doubted any of it had been inspected by the fire marshal.

Her best friend, Kaeja, walked so close behind that she could feel her warm breath on the back of her neck. The only sound that echoed up and down the hallway, besides their footsteps, was the snap of Shaleigh’s camera. The photos were why they risked their lives to explore dangerous places: to document the decrepit. It was thrilling to explore a place that nobody else would see. Eventually all the walls would fall, and Ferris Factory would decay into memory. Shaleigh and Kaeja would have the only remaining proof it even existed, especially since it was clear that nobody was supposed to know about this section of the factory.

A rat skittered out of a heap of moldy paperwork and Kaejatook a deep breath until it passed. “This is the worst one yet. By far.” Shaleigh grinned, though her respirator concealed it. “Come on, we had to come back and take the stairs down. We couldn’t just end it at the base of the elevator.”

“Do you see that?” She swung the flashlight to the side. “I couldn’t even hang a picture on that wall. Four floors down was enough, five floors is just begging to get hurt.”

Kaeja was right, the walls of the hallway curved inward like a bow string. Shaleigh hadn’t noticed how bad it was until she mentioned it. “We’ll be quick.”

She snapped as many photos as she could while Kaeja held the flashlight. It illuminated a good portion of the hall, but the beam had little effect against the thick, sick air. The light ought to have made the place more inviting, but it only made the shadows darker. It was hard for Shaleigh to keep her hands steady for the photos; fear and exhilaration kept combating within her. Sure, this place was terrifying and could collapse at any moment, but the thought of capturing a world that would never been seen again, of documenting the forgotten before it disappeared, made her tap the shutter button of her camera faster. “I wish we had more time. I’d love to look inside some of these rooms.”

“Not me,” Kaeja said, her eyes shadowed by the reflections of the flashlight on her mask. “These halls are creepy enough, thanks.” The light flashed across some metal scraps against the bowed wooden wall. It was hard to tell if it had been left behind by the workers, or if it had fallen from the ceiling. “Didn’t they used to make cars here?”

“Sure, that’s it.” Shaleigh snorted as she tapped on a dirt-encrusted sign that warned visitors that the hallway was a high security corridor. “Whatever helps you sleep at night.”

“It’s an old building, but that doesn’t mean they were hiding anything down here.”

“Then what’s with the high security? They had to be doing something illegal down here. The maps we found don’t even show these floors. I heard it used to be a hospital,”

Shaleigh glanced back to her with a smile. “Dad heard it from a colleague at work. They used to keep dangerous people here.” Kaeja stared at her, the beam from the flashlight in her hands trembling.

A high-pitched squeal of metal echoed down through the insides of the building, as though the entire structure was shifting under its own weight. The squeal turned into a groan that shook the very floor beneath their feet. Both teens froze, barely daring to breathe as debris fell from the ceiling. Seven levels of exhausted steel, wood, and plaster shifted over their heads. They stood in silence waiting for the walls to give way, waiting to be buried beneath the rusty metal beams, discolored linoleum floors, and rat-infested insulation; but the building remained steady.

The noise stopped. Particles drifted in the air.

“It doesn’t sound very good, does it?” Shaleigh whispered.

“I don’t like it. I don’t care what you say, this is the lowest I’m going. Five levels below ground is far enough.”

Shaleigh stifled a laugh, “That’s what you said when we found the stairs.”

A high-pitched noise erupted down the hall causing both teens to jump. It didn’t sound metallic…it didn’t sound like the building at all.

Kaeja stared down the hallway with wide eyes. The noise broke into a whimper, and then there was silence. It only lasted maybe a few seconds, but they both knew what they had heard. Someone was down there with them.

Shaleigh turned to look behind them, but without the flashlight beam it was too dark to see anything. “Was that—was that behind us?”

Kaeja spun around, temporarily blinding Shaleigh in the process. “I don’t know. I thought it came from in front of us.”

The darkness felt like a cage all around them. The beam of the flashlight, darting forwards and backwards down the hall, seemed so small and insignificant now. Someone was in the darkness. Someone was watching them. Shaleighstepped around Kaeja and started back toward the stairwell. “We should go.”

Kaeja grabbed her arm and Shaleigh could feel her clammy fingers through the sleeve of her jacket. “Are you crazy? You said that’s where it came from.”

“How else are we going to get out of here?”

Kaeja could give no argument and shook her head. “Shaleigh…” she whimpered.

“It’s okay, we’ll do it together.” She put her camera around her neck and took Kaeja’s hand. They walked slowly towards the door of the stairwell, side by side, fingers clasped in a death grip.

For a moment, Shaleigh thought she saw movement ahead of them and stopped. Kaeja must have seen it too because she swept her flashlight left and right, searching for whatever it was. Just before the beam of light reached one of the doors, Shaleigh was certain she spotted a shadow move into one of the rooms.

“Ow…” Kaeja whispered giving their joined hands a tug. Shaleigh realized she had been gripping too hard and loosened her hold but didn’t say a word. Her eyes were fixed on where the shadow had been. As they drew closer, an arm stretched out, hairy with long, black fingernails, and pulled the door closed. There was a splash as though something heavy had fallen into a pool of water from behind the door.

Kaeja screamed. A bolt of adrenaline hit Shaleigh and she grabbed Kaeja’s arm. Together they ran. As they passed the door, the knob began to turn with a creak. She wasn’t sure if Kaeja had seen it or not. “Keep going!” she yelled, all pretense of caution forgotten.

Once the stairwell came into view, they sped up. Shaleighslipped on a wet spot and her foot skidded. She would have sprained her ankle if she hadn’t grabbed for the wall. What a stupid way to die, she thought as she regained her footing. She had to keep her head straight, because panicking in an old, decrepit building was a sure way to get hurt or killed by whatever was after them. She forced them to slow down to climb over a pile of broken boards and nails. Shaleighhad thought it odd to have it so close to the stairwell when they’d first come down, but now she saw it as a marker, a warning perhaps, to keep trespassers out. As she helped Kaeja down the opposite side of the rubble, she heard limping footsteps approaching them.

“It’s coming!” Shaleigh cried and together they sprinted for the stairwell. The flashlight bounced beams off the walls.

They hit the metal door like a battering ram, shoving it into the rusted railings of the stairs, causing it to reverberate like a gong up and down the concrete shaft. Shaleigh gripped the metal rail, feeling the flecks of paint come off on her hands, and the raw rust beneath. She exchanged a glance with Kaeja, both trying to catch their breath. The respirator was humid with her breathing and she couldn’t wait to rip it off when they got outside. She looked up the dark stairwell above them and grimaced. There were too many floors between them and safety.

Kaeja gasped and reached out to grab Shaleigh’s arm. Shaleigh stared at her. She thought she could make out footsteps from the hall they just left, but it was so faint it was hard to make out. It could have just been the sounds of the building, but she didn’t want to take any chances. Taking a deep breath, Shaleigh led the way as they started up the stairs.

One floor, two floors, three floors.

Was that the sound of the doorknob beneath them being turned? Kaeja hurried to her side as they continued to climb. Both were audibly gasping now. It wouldn’t take much for their pursuer to know where they went. Shaleigh’sthighs were burning. She could sprint up a flight or two of stairs, but this was tough. It didn’t help that she was already out of breath before they even started climbing.

“What if it’s locked us in?” Kaeja asked between sucking in gulps of air.

Shaleigh didn’t respond. She didn’t want to even consider that option.

They climbed two more flights of stairs. Kaeja reached the door first. They both let out a sigh of relief when the door opened. Panting, they jogged to the main exit, a pair of massive iron doors that looked like they belonged in a mausoleum. Neither of them said a word as they descended the short flight of broken steps to the grass. Shaleigh ripped off her respirator, Kaeja did the same, and they both exchanged grins as they crossed the grass-pocked concrete walkway. It felt good to feel the heat of the day on her skin too. The sun was sinking in the west, but the air was sweet with wild honeysuckle and a light breeze rustled the old oaks. Shaleigh relaxed a bit but could tell by Kaeja’sexpression that she wouldn’t be able to relax until they had left the property completely.

The concrete walkway fell away to tall grass that came up to their hips, as they sidestepped small pine trees that were beginning to take over the lot and moved further away from the building. The chain link fence that surrounded the property sported multiple warning signs for trespassers, though they were faded from exposure. Kaeja pulled back the corner of fencing they had used to get in, and they both climbed through without saying a word. Kaeja paused, took a deep breath, and relaxed her shoulders.

“I know you’ll hate to hear this, Kaeja,” Shaleigh started. “But I think I’m done with Ferris Factory for a while.”

Kaeja laughed. “No complaints here. I’m going to add that we never go underground again either. I am not running up that many stairs again, no matter how great you say the pictures will be.” Shaleigh couldn’t help but laugh. The downtrodden path through the woods made it a short walk to reach the bus stop. Shaleigh unwrapped the scarf from around her head and shook out her twists. The breeze felt wonderful on her scalp. They dropped everything into Shaleigh’s backpack as they walked. The main road was surprisingly empty for a Sunday afternoon. After exploring inside of decomposing buildings for a while, she had new respect for even the simplest things. The bench for the bus stop, covered in graffiti and bearing a single broken board, looked like a luxury.

Kaeja sprawled across the broken wooden bench and covered her eyes with her arms.

“Wow, what a rush!”

“I know!” Despite her smile, Shaleigh still glanced over her shoulder, as though expecting the person from the building to be slinking toward them through the woods.

“What do you think it was?”

Kaeja stared up into the sky. “Someone crazy, I’m sure. It’s a good thing they made some noise. I don’t like the thought of them sneaking up on us like that.” She sat up and patted the bench beside her.

Shaleigh obliged, her legs were still shaky. “Did you see that hand?”

Kaeja shuddered, “Looked like he hadn’t seen the light of day in forever.” She stretched her arms over the back of the bench. “This is exactly why I don’t like the big ones. There are too many hiding places.”

“The small ones aren’t much better,” Shaleigh added. “Sometimes it feels like a shot right out of Texas Chainsaw Massacre, you know?”

Kaeja nodded and the two grew silent from their own nerves. Kaeja’s leg jumped up and down, as though at any moment she would jump up into a sprint. Shaleigh kept resisting the urge to look over her shoulder once more. The bus couldn’t come fast enough.


“Ugh, I need to think about something else.” Kaeja said with a tense smile. “You’ve got a party coming up tonight, don’t you? You get to get all dolled up. I know you don’t like the people much, but I do envy you getting to go.”

Shaleigh sighed. “I had almost forgotten about it.” She checked her watch. It was a good thing they had left when they did because she still needed to get home and clean up. “If you like it so much, you can totally go for me.”

“Your dad would never let me. He needs you there.”

“Unfortunately.”

Kaeja scooted closer and put an arm around her shoulders. “I’m sorry. I guess that is pretty hard on you. Do they ask you a lot of questions about him?”

Shaleigh nodded. She hated the tight feeling she got in her chest whenever she thought of those stupid parties. She hated the fact that she had to go. Why in the world did Roseworth College have so many of them anyway? It was like they wanted to torture her.

Deciding to change the subject, she picked up her camera from around her neck. After checking to make sure nothing had been damaged in their mad dash, she asked, “Want to see the pictures?”

Kaeja nodded but looked concerned. Shaleigh ignored it.

The brilliant light of the flash somehow made the dark halls of Ferris Factory less frightening, less dangerous. If only people were so easy to strip of fear.

.

About Marlena:461be56c-5ba1-45de-b1c1-2ec07c022b74

I write about strange creatures. Typically they shouldn’t exist, or they have bled through from a different reality, or they’re pretending to be a crying baby in a crib. Sometimes that lands my stories in horror and other times in fantasy, but there’s always an air of strangeness to my tales. If you want to get a better feel for what I’m talking about, check out a few clips or read a few drabbles.

My work has appeared in a spattering of short story collections, but I do have a few novellas and novels in the pipeline. Other than talking about writing, I also talk about cryptozoologywerewolveswildlife conservation, and of course kitties. I’ve also been known to nerd out about Batman and The Hobbit, and have recently discovered the cracktastic fun of Black Butler cosplay, so there will likely be more of these incidents.

By day I work as a web developer, so I’ll occasionally talk about web issues like finding the right theme.



Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest | Goodreads

.

GIVEAWAY

1 winner will win a $10 Amazon Gift Card, INTERNATIONAL.

a Rafflecopter giveaway