Harry Potter Extravaganza!


Oh yes, you just read that correctly! We are having an entire....an entire....Harry Potter month. There will be a giveaway for every book and movie out so far for the series, I know a ton of people who could use a new book to replace the old worn very-much-loved copy they already have. In addition, myself and maybe a couple of the other participants are going to donate a quarter to Susan G Komen for the cure for every review submitted to the linkies during the Harry Potter Extravaganza! I will make sure you all know exactly where they are when they get posted!

Here is the schedule:
10/15 Amy Reads
10/16 Amy Reads

I know you are all thinking this....you want to be able to show your HP colors...I know and have you covered. Go HERE or HERE (if you need a second opinion) to take a Sorting Hat Quiz...and then grab a button to show support for your house!

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Feature/Giveaway: Venom by: Jennifer Estep

Venom (Elemental Assassin, Book 3)


I am so sorry I haven't finished this one yet, so the review will follow soon. In the mean time to wet your appetite:

Synopsis


What kind of assassin works pro bono?

It’s hard to be a badass assassin when a giant is beating the crap out of you. Luckily, I never let pride get in the way of my work. My current mission is personal: annihilate Mab Monroe, the Fire elemental who murdered my family. Which means protecting my identity, even if I have to conceal my powerful Stone and Ice magic when I need it most. To the public, I’m Gin Blanco, owner of Ashland’s best barbecue joint. To my friends, I’m the Spider, retired assassin. I still do favors on the side. Like ridding a vampire friend of her oversized stalker—Mab’s right-hand goon who almost got me dead with his massive fists. At least irresistible Owen Grayson is on my side. The man knows too much about me, but I’ll take my chances. Then there’s Detective Bria Coolidge, one of Ashland’s finest. Until recently, I thought my baby sister was dead. She probably thinks the same about me. Little does she know, I’m a cold-blooded killer . . . who is about to save her life.





Make sure to check out Ms. Estep's website as well.

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(click the image above to enter to win a copy of Venom)


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Book Review: Web of Lies by: Jennifer Estep

Web of Lies (Elemental Assassin, Book 2)
Publisher: Pocket
Publish Date: 25 May 2010
Origins: Purchased
Format: Paperback
Series: Elemental Assassin: Spider's Bite (1), Web of Lies (2), Venom (3), Tangled Threads (4)
Rating: 4/5 Ravens (will load pic when blogger fixes itself)

Synopsis
Curiosity is definitely going to get me dead one of these days. Probably real soon.

I'm Gin Blanco.

You might know me as the Spider, the most feared assassin in the South. I’m retired now, but trouble still has a way of finding me. Like the other day when two punks tried to rob my popular barbecue joint, the Pork Pit. Then there was the barrage of gunfire on the restaurant. Only, for once, those kill shots weren’t aimed at me. They were meant for Violet Fox. Ever since I agreed to help Violet and her grandfather protect their property from an evil coalmining tycoon, I’m beginning to wonder if I’m really retired. So is Detective Donovan Caine. The only honest cop in Ashland is having a real hard time reconciling his attraction to me with his Boy Scout mentality. And I can barely keep my hands off his sexy body. What can I say? I’m a Stone elemental with a little Ice magic thrown in, but my heart isn’t made of solid rock. Luckily, Gin Blanco always gets her man . . . dead or alive.

Review
This will be a short review because I am way behind on things right now and I have to get the post for Vemon going :) I liked this book. Not as much as I liked Spider's Bite but enough to want me to keep reading. From the blurbs on Venom and Tangled Webs...I want to get the Tangled Webs, looks very cool.

I like Gin's balls. She is a strong character and has a good sense of right and wrong (mostly). I like Finn, he is one of my favorite characters. I did have a problem with Donovan...he is just becoming more and more of a tool and I say good riddance! I enjoyed Ms. Estep's writing style, it feels a bit hard-boiled, which I liked. I can't wait to read Venom :)



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Book Review/Giveaway: Aching For Always by: Gwyn Cready

Aching for Always
Rating: 

Publisher: Pocket

Publish Date: 28 September 2010

Origins: Publisher for Review

Format: Paperback

Blurb: RITA Award–winning author Gwyn Cready continues the “sexy fun” (BookPage) of her charming time-travel adventures with a high-spirited tale of a modern-day mapmaker and the eighteenth-century English navy captain she can’t resist. Ambitious and feisty Josephine “Joss” O’Malley has spent years fighting to keep her mother’s map-making company alive. Just when she finds herself considering taking a risky next step with bad-boy entrepreneur Rogan Reynolds— whose generosity has helped keep the business afloat—Joss meets dark and mysterious Hugh Hawksmoor. Hugh’s deft touch and old-world seduction stir Joss’s desires like a storm at sea, and she has no clue that he has sailed three hundred years into the future to avenge the death of his brother at the hands of her father. Or that she holds the key to a map that will help him undo the destructive changes her father wrought in the past. When Hugh lures Joss into a treacherous journey through time, there’s not a twenty-first-century trick that can save her. But when she applies her own instincts to a course she thought was set, she discovers that the high seas hold some scandalous surprises.

Review in 5: Naval-men, Time-Travel, Drama, Steam, and Cute Shoes!

Review: Lets get the somewhat less positive out of the way, this book didn't keep my interest locked in, I had to make myself read at a few spots and my love for this author's work is what made me keep on trucking. That being said, this book is pretty good and has some pretty awesome elements.

This is the type of book I like to say has something for everyone: betrayal, sea-men, cute shoes, vengeance, fashion, lust, babies, there is a ton going on in this story. I love Joss, she is pretty awesome, and the way the book starts out, your mouth will be agape, trust me. Oh, Joss, she is a strong women who learns to listen to her heart and her head at the same time, something a lot of romance heroines are unable to do and something I admire. The dashing Hugh is also very appealing, he is handsome, large, a naval captain, and he knows his way around a female's body.

The plot is what makes the book hard to hold on to, it felt sort of like it skipped around a bit and I had a problem understanding a few scenes, like the writing was a bit jumbled. Overall please don't let that stop you, give this book a try, you won't regret it!


Also if you haven't heard Ms. Cready is giving away a wonderful Kate Spade bag (reminiscent of the shoes the heroine is wearing on the cover) on her website. To enter, just go to www.cready.com. The giveaway ends October 4, 2010.


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Book Review: For the King's Favor by: Elizabeth Chadwick

For the King's Favor
Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark
Publish Date: 1 September 2010
Origins: Publisher for Review
Format: Paperback
Series: William Marshall Series: The Greatest Knight (1), The Scarlet Lion (2), For the King's Favor (3) or The Time of Singing (same book diff title), To Defy a King (4)



Synopsis
A Bittersweet Tale of Love, Loss, and the Power of Royalty

When Roger Bigod arrives at King Henry II's court to settle a bitter inheritance dispute, he becomes enchanted with Ida de Tosney, young mistress to the powerful king. A victim of Henry's seduction and the mother of his son, Ida sees in Roger a chance to begin a new life. But Ida pays an agonizing price when she leaves the king, and as Roger's importance grows and he gains an earldom, their marriage comes under increasing strain. Based on the true story of a royal mistress and the young lord she chose to marry, For the King's Favor is Elizabeth Chadwick at her best.

Review
This was the first book by Elizabeth Chadwick I have had the privileged to read. Ms. Chadwick's work is beautiful, it reminds me why I love historical fiction in the first place. Most of my historical fiction reading background has been on King Arthur or Henry the 8th...some pretty popular guys, it was really nice to break away from my usual comfort zone and learn something new. 

I like the characters in this book, usually historical fiction focuses on certain things, in books on certain European history the book usually revolves around a war or a ruler...this book had a nice twist and focused on something different. I know nothing about this period in history so I could not tell you if her historical data is correct but it seemed plausible enough from just the reading, which is a very important aspect of historical fiction.

I really enjoyed this book and will be looking for many more books by Ms. Chadwick.



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Book Review: Rogue by: Rachel Vincent

Rogue (Shifters Book 2)
Publisher: Mira
Publish Date: 1 February 2010
Origins: Purchased
Format: Paperback
Series: Shifter Series: Stray (1), Rogue (2), Pride (3), Prey (4), Shift (5), Alpha (6)


Synopsis
Okay, so cats don't always land on their feet.

I know that better than most. Since rejoining the Pride, I've made big decisions and even bigger mistakes: the kind paid for with innocent lives. As the first and only female enforcer, I have plenty to prove to my father, the Pride, and myself. And with murdered toms turning up in our territory, I'm working harder than ever, though I always find the energy for a little after-hours recreation with Marc, my partner both on and off duty.

But not all my mistakes are behind me. We're beginning to suspect that the dead are connected with a rash of missing human women and that they can all be laid at my feet--two or four, take your pick. And one horrible indiscretion may yet cost me more than I can bear.

Review
I read Stray, the first in Rachel Vincent's Shifters Series, last December but I fell back into the Faythe's world just like it was home. Ms Vincent definitely has no qualms about torturing her characters and pushing them all to limits that are yet to be set. It is nice and refreshing to see an author write to her story and not to the coddling of her character. Don't get me wrong, there are plenty of tortured characters out there, I have read a lot of them, but Ms. Vincent sets it on a whole other level, challenging her characters to survive and continue to thrive when set against many trials that some people would find to be to hard.

Ms. Vincent writes beautifully and I have read many of her books; I love to see the passion for her craft in every world that I read, I can truly feel how much she cherishes her work and her characters (yes even with the torture). I love the diversity of her characters as well. She creates a whole pride of mainly guys but easily sets each one apart and lets you see exactly who each and every one of them is. I also love Faythe, she keeps getting dealt crappy hand after crappy hand and she is still up and fighting.

On that previous note...what is with Marc in this book. I understand the predicament he gets put in, I truly do, but come on....give a girl a break. After this book I am on Team Jace...just sayin.

Continuing on. I love the plots in these books. It is all about life, death, and the prosperity of the pride. I am getting to see each character in action, pick my favorites and hang their posters on my wall. They are that freaking cool. I am also getting to see Faythe grow up, even in the short span between the last book in this book I feel like Faythe has grown so much, she still has a ways to go, but she is becoming more and more the character I can already see her becoming.

Overall, excellent book and a great series so far...four books to go, hopefully they continue to remain amazing!



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Apologies!

Dearest Readers,

I have a formal apology to submit here. I messed up. I was supposed to be posting for the True Vows TLC Book Tour on the 24th, somehow I put in my calendar the 28th and when I went to format for today the lists had me on the 24th. I apparently have developed selective reading, and for this I apologize to those waiting for this post and to TLC book tours for my neglect. So I am going to share what I have on this super sweet new genre of romance and add more as I get the books back into my inbox (there was some more mix up with the books, totally miscommunication on my part, and I feel horrible!) TLC has been super gracious and totally told me to relax and not beat myself up...but I do...and this helps me feel better! Anyway...on to the totally cooler and more interesting part of this post...



This new genre is considered Reality Based and the stories are basically written from true life couples. I think this is very cool. Women can start reading about couples who aren't completely made for each other and couples who learn to be together and have to face true to life obstacles. 

In this posting I was supposed to talk about the title 'Meet Me In Manhattan'

Meet Me in Manhattan (True Vows)
 
Synopsis: A classic love story told only as Judith Arnold can tell it—with a deep grasp of the complexities of the human heart and unforgettable tales of love lost and then unexpectedly found again.

Ted Skala and Erika Fredell were the perfect New Jersey high school sweethearts. Like many teens Ted and Erika spent plenty of time in parked cars under the stars, but there was so much more between them than the chemistry that ignited their courtship, and Ted couldn’t imagine a life without Erika. By graduation he was ready to get engaged. Erika, however, was ready to spread her wings and faraway she flew to college. She broke his heart. She sailed the world.

Fast forward 15 years. When fate intervenes and their paths cross, the result is emotionally explosive and that old black magic is back with the force of a super nova. But Erika once ravaged his heart: How can Ted ever trust her again? And now that he’s seriously involved with another woman, how can Erika hope for a second chance with the man she never should have let go?

FREE download of the first chapter HERE!

The last two stops on the tour are below and make sure to click the link about to check out the previous tours!


Tuesday, September 28th: Enchanted by Books
Wednesday, September 29th: The Book Binge

So lets chat? What do you think about romance based on real-life???



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Gail Giles Interview/Dark Song Blog Tour

I am very happy to be hosting Ms. Gail Giles here on the Bibliophilic Book Blog for her tour in celebration of her new book, Dark Song. I have read this book and I have to say it's stunningly deep and powerful. Here is a bit more information about the book:


Dark Song
Summary: Dark has a sound. A song.


Marc said he heard that darkness when he creeped houses, when he stood over people while they slept. The song the predator's heart sings when it hears the heart of the prey.


Ames is not the person she was a few months ago. Her father lost his job, and her family is crumbling apart. No more private school, cushy mansion, or best friend to hand with...now, all she has is Marc.


Marc, who loves her more than anything. Marc, who is obsessed with his gun collection. Marc, who won't let anyone stand in his way where Ames is concerned - especially her parents. Mom and Dad, role models of lies and self-absorption, aren't exactly innocent...but is Ames prepared to commit the ultimate betrayal against them?

My review of Dark Song

(Star): How did writing Dark Song change your views about the relationships you have and those you see around you?

(Gail Giles): I don't think it changed my relationships, but it solidified my feelings that everyone has two stories.  The external story that the world sees and the internal story that we keep hidden.

(Star): What do you hope that people will gain by reading Dark Song?

(GG): Wow, that's hard.  The author has to write a book knowing and hoping that every reader takes something different away from the story.  It's a really flat story if every on gains the same thing.  The overall arc though is Ames did love her family and was willing to protect them even though she put them in harm's way in the first place.

(Star): Do you have any writing rituals?

(GG): Coffee.  And I have to write 300 words or sit in front of the monitor for three hours.  Which ever comes first.

(Star): What advice do you have for readers who tell you their own Dark Song?

(GG): Talk to someone.  Find a counselor, friend, police officer, whatever, who can help.  Do not let a boy, man abuse or use you.  That's never, ever love and it usually ends in someone's death.  Beauty and beast when love conquers the beast is a FAIRY TALE.




I want to thank Ms. Giles for her time and please read Dark Song (you'll love it!) and visit her website at http://gailgiles.com/Welcome.html



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Book Review: The Lightning Thief by: Rick Riordan


The Lightning Thief   [LIGHTNING THIEF] [Paperback]Publisher: Hyperion
Publish Date: 31 March 2006
Origins: Purchased
Format: Paperback
Series: Percy Jackson and the Olypians: The Lightning Thief (1), The Sea of Monsters (2), The Titan's Curse (3), The Battle of the Labyrinth (4), The Last Olympian (5)
Synopsis

Percy Jackson is about to be kicked out of boarding school...again. And that's the least of his troubles. Lately, mythological monsters and the gods of Mount Olympus seem to be walking straight out of the pages of Percy's Greek mythology textbook and into his life. And worse, he's angered a few of them. Zeus's master lightning bolt has been stolen, and Percy is the prime suspect. 

Now Percy and his friends have just ten days to find and return Zeus's stolen property and bring peace to a warring Mount Olympus. But to succeed on his quest, Percy will have to do more than catch the true thief: he must come to terms with the father who abandoned him; solve the riddle of the Oracle, which warns him of betrayal by a friend; and unravel a treachery more powerful than the gods themselves

Review

I think the only books I have read specifically targeted for Middle Grade was Harry Potter before this book. I am sad to say that this book has been hanging out in my bathroom for MONTHS and I have been reading it a tiny bit at a time, and I finished it tonight. (Sorry if that is TMI, but you know you do it too.) I was expecting an older feel for some reason (prob because of the whole not reading MG) but it was still pretty good. I also have yet to see the movie.

The story is interesting and unique. I love the way the Olypians are all set up in the modern world, and no one knows about it. The story has a very cool and seamless way of integrating mythology with modern day twists. I love the rivalries between the 'Heroes' and I enjoyed the tangible tension between the characters.

I probably won't read more of this series, just because it felt a tad but juvenile for my liking, but the story was excellent, as was the writing, and the characters. I recommend this book for anyone who loves children's and MG books.



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