Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Review and GIVEAWAY! Wedding Belle Blues by Mia Epsilon

Virtual Book Tour Dates:  6/20/14 – 7/4/14

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Release Date: 6/20/14

Short Blurb:
What do you do when the woman you love is marrying the wrong man? Sabotage the wedding!

Long Blurb:

Anna is planning the perfect wedding, but she doesn’t anticipate her
future mother-in-law’s offer of help’ which translates into take over.
Her groom-to-be avoids her and insists their growing problems are just
‘bridal nerves’. Worst of all, her best friend, Robin, begins to act
strange. Everyone around her has his or her own agenda. What’s a girl to
do when she begins to realize the perfect life she envisioned is all a

Robin has two great loves in his life: his best friend Anna and his
motorcycle. Not one to make a scene, he supports Anna in her plan to
marry the wrong man and regrets she can’t accept his ‘dare devil’
lifestyle. But when push comes to shove, he’s more than willing to make
the necessary sacrifice and prove he is the man she needs.

As the wedding date grows closer and plans shift into high gear,
Robin and Anna grow closer and not just as friends. Each must decide
what the perfect life truly means while trying to negotiate the maze of
wedding plans, secrets, and hidden motives. Will someone be left singing
the blues?

“Chasing you would be a wasted effort.” Robin waved the half eaten slice before he set the crust back in the box.
Anna slammed the lid on his hand. “What do you mean? I’m not worth the chase?”
starving teacher here.” He knocked on the inside of the box and glared
at her. “And don’t be ridiculous. Of course you’re worth a chase, but
even I can recognize a no win situation regardless if I can’t fully give
up on it or you.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?” He was hiding something besides his hand in the box. “Robin?”
liquid blue fire in his eyes singed her as he spoke. “I didn’t give the
let’s-forget-this-ever-happened-and-just-be-friends speech. I didn’t
stay too afraid to see where our relationship might have gone. No win
Stunned, she gaped at him. “I thought…but you never said…I mean we’d…”
just stared at her, face unmoving, his chest rising and falling as his
breaths increased. He was, she realized, getting angrier by the second.
swallowed and tried to find words, any words, to defuse the tension. “I
couldn’t bear to think of losing you as my friend. We did the best
thing for us.”
“We did the best thing for you.”
“But you…you agreed with me. You said you didn’t want to risk our friendship either.”
the hell could I say?” He shot to his feet, knocking the pizza box to
the floor. “You didn’t give me a choice. Either be your friend, only
your friend, or leave your life.”
“I never said we couldn’t be friends or you had to leave my life.” She whispered the words. Yet it had been close.
now you won’t face it.” He muttered a curse which shocked her with the
anger behind it. “Will you? You won’t admit maybe we could have
faced it the morning after. I’m not an idiot, Robin. When you date a
woman, it’s like your skydiving adventures. You have a thrill, anything
goes, and it’s awesome and you’re on the high of it all. Then you land
and it’s over. You never talk to the woman again, let alone have a
friendship with her. I didn’t want our friendship to be over. I still
don’t. I can’t give more than I am. I can’t.”
Anna?” He stopped right in front of her, hands on his hips balled into
fists. “Why can’t you give more? Because of Doug Dufuss?”
“No. Because I can’t just have sex with you and then watch you leave!”

Buy Links:


About the Author:

Mia Epsilon lives with her enduring soul mate hubby in the gorgeous Blue
Ridge Appalachian Mountains of North Carolina, USA. She’s an avid
reader of almost anything but particularly romance, a
never-miss-an-episode viewer of Doctor Who and Sherlock, and happily
suffers a coffee and chocolate addiction. She can most often be found at
her computer, spinning new stories, or in a quiet padded nook with her e
reader. Look for more stories in the ‘Weddings by C & C’ line.

Connect With The Author:

Breathless Press


Amazon Authors Page

Blog Website



My Review:

Anna's engaged, which is great news to everyone except her best friend Robin, who has been pining for her for years. How will his attempts to sabotage effect his and Anna's friendship?

This was a quick read for me, but it was a fun one too. It reminded me of how horrible things could go in wedding planning. Oddly enough, right now I am helping plan a small destination wedding for my sister, so this book did hit home a bit. Luckily, my sister's future mother-in-law is nowhere near as crazy and domineering as Doug's mother is.

Mia Epsilon really did a great job with this novel. It was funny, quirky, and pulled at your heartstrings. There was plenty of romance, but the characters didn't just float through the story. I thought that the backstory of Anna and Robin was particularly great. The thought of a friend so great that they not only stayed with you all through college but actually got a teaching job at the same school, in the same hall as you? I wish Epsilon were writing my life story.

While it was a great book, I did have two small issues with Wedding Belle Blues. The first is that while the circumstances of Anna and Robin's meeting put a smile on my face, it's a bit hard to believe. The other problem I had is that the book was entirely too short. I would have loved it more if there were more to the story, more drama leading up to a bigger climax (though Epsilon definitely nailed the climax).

This was a great book, it really was. I enjoyed reading it and simply wished there had been more to read. I recommend this to anyone who likes "chick lit" or anyone looking for a quick summer read. I am excited to see what else Mia Epsilon has to offer, because I definitely enjoyed this one. Please note that I received a complimentary copy of this book in order for me to provide you, my lovely readers, with my 100% honest views and opinions.

My Rating:


Enter to win a $25 Amazon gift card! The giveaway will run 6/20/14 – 7/4/14.   Enter through Rafflecopter!

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Friday, June 20, 2014

REVIEW: 99 Days of Laney MacGuire by Rachel Bateman

Virtual Book Tour Dates: 6/11/14 – 7/9/14
Genres:  YA Contemporary Romance
Tour Promo Pricing: $.99

Laney can’t wait to spend the summer at her father’s lake resort. It’s a place where time stands still and nothing ever changes—the perfect thing for Laney after the year she just had. But when she gets there, she discovers the lodge isn’t quite as unchanging as she once thought.
Some of the differences are good, like Rory’s new look; some are bad, like whatever secret Karissa is keeping. And then some things are just confusing, like Weston.
Weston, her mysterious new co-worker, who is the cause of so many of the changes Laney hates. She wants to despise him, but she can’t deny the attraction she feels, nor the desire she has to be around the one person who didn’t know her before the summer—the one person she doesn’t have to pretend for.

Ripples pulsated against me, the tiniest change in movement, and I sensed he was behind me before I could actually feel him. Then, there he was, his hands resting gently on my hips below the water. I mentally braced myself for the involuntary tensing. It would come eventually; it did every time a man touched me. Except, I remembered, on the walk home. Not with Weston. Heat from his hands spread through my body, and a need built deep within me. So foreign, yet so familiar at the same time. The pull below my navel brought back sensations I thought I would never feel again. For the first time since that night, I felt fully like myself again.
I turned in his hands to face him. His eyes were slightly unfocused, and he wore a grin that barely pulled his lips up on one side of his mouth, but his desire was clear. Alcohol still warmed my veins, encouraging me as I let myself relax into him. I could let down my guard, follow my instincts and urges again. Right?
His lips had been chilled by the air, and were cold when they touched mine, ever so lightly, but they warmed up quickly when I pressed my mouth against his in return. He slipped one hand off my hip and wrapped his arm around my back, pulling my body against his. God, I fit in there so well. Urgently, but still gently, he pushed my mouth open with his own. His tongue played against mine, and desire roiled beneath the surface.
I have no idea how long we stayed like that, intertwined in each other’s arms. The thrill of kissing Weston was even more intoxicating than the bottle Derek sent home with us. Each brush of his lips excited me more, setting my nerve endings on fire. The water caressed my skin, tickling my back, as we bobbed there in our own little world. I couldn’t get enough. I pressed myself tighter and tighter against his slick skin until the tingle in the pit of my stomach grew into a silent roar. Finally, there with Weston, I was alive again.
He stroked his hand along my back as he kissed me even more deeply. He traced the line of my shoulder blade and down my arm. Then he reached my wrist, and his mouth froze against my own. His fingers played against my scar. And as quickly as things built up, they fell down again. His hand on my wrist brought the last four months crashing back, and the intensity swelling within me died out instantly. I pulled back and swam off to join Karissa and Rory, leaving Weston standing chest-deep in the water. I turned once to see him still watching me, but he never made a move to follow.
Smart boy.

My Review:
Typically when I do a review, I give out both the good and the bad feedback. Sometimes there are characters that just make me cringe. Sometimes authors try to speed along the character development and end up with characters who are simply lacking. Sometimes they try to speed the plot along too much and just make the entire story unbelievable. This time, as I wrote out my pro and con list, I realized that as hard as I tried, I couldn't think of any cons.

Bateman has created the ultimate relatable character. Laney is a 17-year-old girl who recently graduated high school. Though she's gone through great changes in the recent year, she has always been a typical teenager. She was always carefree, enjoying her life and making her own choices (even if they weren't always the best.) Recently, she's started doubting her plans for the rest of her life and has decided to spend the summer with her father and best friends trying to figure out what comes next. I feel like I've just described my early adult life.

The refreshing thing about this book is that Bateman doesn't put Laney on a pedestal or try to hide her flaws. Laney and her friends make the same stupid choices we all did as teens, and just like us, they don't know when to ask for help. I think that this is the part that resonated most with me. It seems like every teen has a time in their life where they really should ask for help but just don't know who to ask or how. Bateman has managed to create a character that could easily be 90% of us.

I'm undecided about who to recommend this book to. I have worked with high schoolers for a few years, and though there is a lot to this story that would be appropriate for them, there are other parts that I would find questionable. As a teen reader, I think that I would have fallen in love with this book. As a parent, I would cringe if my daughter read this book. I would recommend this to anyone who wants to find a relatable character, but caution readers that there are adult themes addressed in this book.

My Rating:
Five stars!

Buy Links:

About the Author:

Rachel Bateman is a writer and editor who spends too much time thinking she can out bake the Cake Boss. (Spoiler: She can’t.) She is from Great Falls, Montana, but dreams of living by the ocean. Rachel is the owner of Metamorphosis Books, an author services company offering edits and formatting/interior layout for independent authors. When not writing, editing, or reading books, she can be found playing with her husband, young son, and small zoo of pets.

Connect With The Author:

Author Rachel Bateman is giving away a Nook Simple Touch, a signed paperback of 99 Days of Laney MacGuire, and a $25 B&N gift card. USA only please!

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*Disclaimer: I receive a complimentary review copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.*

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

REVIEW: Transformed by E. V. Fairfall

Title: Transformed

Author: E.V. Fairfall

Genre: Paranormal, Romance

Age Group: Young Adult

Publisher: R Mind

Release Date: February 1, 2014

Links: Goodreads + Amazon + Barnes and Noble + Smashwords

Since the beginning, two entities have had complete, unquestioned control over Thea: the Earth and God.

But when Thea suddenly figures out that the Earth has trapped her
within a forest, she discovers that the only way to set herself free is
to break God's one rule; she must forsake her animal form and become

The result is nothing she could ever have expected. Lost within the
torrent of human emotions, Thea starts to lose who she is and even
begins to fall in love with the one thing she always hated: a hunter.

As her act against God proves more problematic than anticipated, it
is only a matter of time before her punishment may prove to be worse
than Earth's entrapment.

I love to write just as much
as I love to read. I try to read a book per week, which doesn't always
work out, but it's the thought that counts. Aside from all that I am a
huge animal person.

Transformed is my first novel, but it isn't
my first publication; I've had several short stories published over the
last two years. My main goal as a writer is to explore humanity and to
give people something fun to read.

Links: Goodreads + Facebook

My Review:

Thea has a rather abnormal life. She has a fully stocked apartment but no cell phone. A pet squirrel but no last name. A love of nature but no idea how many centuries she's been walking the Earth. I guess that's the price you pay for being the creator of all creatures on Earth. 

Fairfall wastes no time jumping into the action of the story. I was confused at first, as the story started further into Thea's tale than I had hoped. In fact, I had to check a few times because it seemed like I had missed the first few chapters. It took a while to put together the info you would typically find in the first few chapters of a story, but eventually I understood who and what Thea was. 

I wasn't particularly fond of some of the characters in this book. Though Fairfall did a great job with describing and developing all of her characters. one character in particular made me want to throw down my Kindle every time he opened his mouth. Brice may be one of my least favorite fictional characters of all time, though I'm fairly sure that is what the author hoped for. 

I liked the premise of Fairfall's story, and especially liked the layout of the book. The story of Thea and her brother is told through short snippets at the beginning of each chapter. I was hoping that these snippets would give us some kind of twist or turn of the story, but there was more than enough twists in the rest of the novel. 

Overall, I would give Transformed 3 stars. 

My Rating:

Monday, June 9, 2014

GIVEAWAY! Little Tikes Slam 'n' Curve Slide

Welcome to the Little Tikes Slam 'n' Curve Slide Sweepstakes!

Sponsored by: - Organized by: Mom to Bed by 8

Please take a moment to read Mom to Bed by 8's Little Tikes Slam 'n' Curve Slide review and see how this single waterpark changed her #summerdreams!

Special thank you to our supporting co-host bloggers: Summer That, Finger Click Saver, The Chirping Moms, Our Piece of Earth, Memoirs of a Clueless Woman, Nest Full of New and The Deal Match Maker.

The Slam 'n' Curve Slide is the perfect backyard inflatable water slide! This amazing water slide by Little Tikes features a climbing wall, curved slide and large wading pool area. It is large enough for multiple children to use at once, but folds compactly for easy storage. Woot!

Little Tikes Slam 'n Curve Inflatable Water Slide:
  • Inflatable backyard water slide and pool built from puncture-resistant material
  • Fun inflatable rock wall leads to a slippery slide
  • Slide with a gentle curve at the end for a ride into the refreshing pool
  • Roomy splash pool
  • Includes: Inflatable basketball hoop and ball
  • Step-down inside wall for easy entrance and exit
  • Stakes anchor the bouncer firmly in place
  • Large enough for several children
  • Deflates and folds compactly for easier storage
  • Blower required for inflation
  • Heavy-duty blower with GFCI plug included
  • Comes with stakes, repair kit and storage bag
  • Maximum weight capacity: 350 lbs
  • Accommodates up to 3 children
  • Connect to your garden hose and turn on water flow
  • Dimensions: 10'8"L x 13'1"W x 7'9"H

One winner will receive a Little Tikes Slam 'n' Curve Slide.

Giveaway ends June 30th at 11:59pm, open to US and Canadian residents, ages 18+. Excludes Quebec. Only one entrant per household, per address. Winner is subject to eligibility verification. Enter using the giveaway form below. Good luck!

Disclaimer: The participating bloggers were not compensated for this post. No purchase is necessary to enter. One entrant per household, per address. Void where prohibited by law. Winner(s) will be contacted by email and have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is chosen. The sponsor(s) will be responsible for product shipment to winner(s) of this sweepstakes. This event is in no way administered, sponsored, or endorsed by, or associated with, Facebook and/or Twitter, Google, Pinterest. Contact if you have any additional questions or comments.

Monday, June 2, 2014

REVIEW: The Book of Bart by Ryan Hill

Title: The Book of Bart

Author: Ryan Hill

Genre: Paranormal

Age Group: Young Adult

Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press

Release Date: May 22, 2014

Links: Goodreads

Only one thing is so powerful, so dangerous that Heaven and Hell must work together to find it: the Shard of Gabriel.

With a mysterious Black Cloud of Death hot on the shard’s trail, a desperate Heaven enlists the help of Bart, a demon who knows more about the shard than almost anyone. Six years ago, he had it in his hands. If only he’d used it before his coup to overthrow the devil failed. Now, he’s been sprung from his eternal punishment to help Samantha, an angel in training, recover the shard before the Black Cloud of Death finds it.

If Bartholomew wants to succeed, he’ll have to fight the temptation to betray Samantha and the allure of the shard. After an existence full of evil, the only way Bart can get right with Hell is to be good.

Growing up, Ryan Hill used to spend his time reading and writing instead of doing homework. This resulted in an obsession with becoming a writer, but also a gross incompetence in the fields of science and mathematics. A graduate of North Carolina State University, Ryan has been a film critic for over five years. He lives in Raleigh, NC, with his dog/shadow Maggie. Ryan also feels strange about referring to himself in the third person.

Links: Website + Goodreads + Twitter

Book Excerpt

Samantha burst out of The House of
the Rising Sun, trying to catch up to me. “Wait. Where are you going?”

I waved her off. “You’re on your
own, kiddo.”

“Where are you going?”

“Wherever the day takes me. Disney
World. The moon. I don’t know and I don’t care.” I lit a cigarette and took a
drag. “I’m not messing with a female demon, or whatever it is,” I said,
exhaling through my nose. “You think I’m bad? I at least have fun when I’m
working. Those harpies just…they take things way too seriously.”

Female demons are the worst. So
insecure. One look at another woman and next thing you know, the Titanic is
sinking. Believe me, I know from experience.

“How can I stop one of them from
getting the Shard?”

I stopped and turned around, moving
within inches of her face. “They probably already have it. Why else would
Pierce have attacked me? Why do you think we got jumped at the museum?”

Samantha shrugged. “I’m not sure.”

“Right,” I snapped. Lies. Or as
angels call it, distortion of the truth. Anger boiled in my veins. I considered
letting my horns out to play. It would be nothing to ram them through her
chest, ruining her perfect C-cups. “So tell me, little miss angel face, why
should I help you when you won’t tell me what you know?”

Samantha bit her lower lip, like
she carefully considered what to say next. A wise move. I wanted to impale her
like a matador.

“Well?” I pressed the button on my
keyless entry to unlock my car. “I don’t have all day. I’d like to deflower a
virgin or two before sundown.”

Her expression became stolid. “I
can’t believe you’re scared,” she said derisively. “You. A demon. Afraid of a

She laughed and laid a hand on the
roof of my Benz, adding to her offense.

I’d have removed her hand from her
body, but she’d called out my demonhood, and addressing that took precedence.
Nobody accused me of being afraid.

“Scared?” I spit out my cigarette.
“I’m not scared. I’m just smart enough to know when to close up shop. You don’t
have any idea what you’re talking about.”

“Maybe you’re right.” Samantha’s
lips curled upward. “Maybe they did send me the wrong demon. Next time I’ll
make sure they send me someone who knows how to finish the job.”

Oh, that burned. This girl was
good. And I bought into it, because to be fair, why should I stand idly by and
let somebody else succeed in my stead? I wanted to pat her on the back for such
a fine manipulation, but thought better of it.

My Review

A demon and an angel walk into a highschool. Sounds like the beginning
if a corny joke. In fact, it's one of many strange events in The Book of
Bart. The whole story revolves around a demon, Bart, who is working
with an angel named Samantha and a Templar determined to kill him, but
only after he helps complete the mission. Ryan Hill has written a winner
with this one.

First things first: I hate the cover
of this book. The image of Bart on the cover was borderline haunting
and definitely bothersome. It even shows up at the beginning of every
chapter. I'm typically one of those no-good scoundrels who judges books
by the cover, but I'm definitely glad I have this book a try. 

like to think that the Book of Bart is written in the same style I tend
to write. It's full of sarcasm with characters that tend to pick at
each other. Hill manages to find the humor in every situation, which
unfortunately means that poor Bart goes through an awful lot of nice
suits through the story. I liked how he didn't focus in on the small
details, which would make the book rather violent, but instead focused
on the big picture. His style keeps the reader focused on the main plot
and doesn't let them get tied up in those small details. 

only downside to this novel is that the plot takes so many twists and
turns it gets a little confusing. There were a few times when I would
have to re-read earlier pages in order to understand what is going on in
the later pages. I feel like this is a story I would need to read twice
to fully comprehend everything that was going on, but luckily I was
able to make it to the end with some idea of what was going on. 

Book of Bart is being marketed as a young adult book, though I wouldn't
suggest it be added to the high school library where I work. There is a
lot talk of drinking and sex involved, as well as a chain-smoking demon
main character. I highly encourage people who like stories that are out
of the ordinary to read this story. If you are reading about a demon
who was kicked out of heaven, you can pretty much assume that there will
be some debauchery. This book was a great read, go check it out.

My Rating

Four Big Stars!