Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Book Excerpt: Brightwing by Sullivan Lee

Edgar should have known it was too good to be true.

“Did you think you could get away with lying to us?” he asked. “That we were stupid?”

“What are you talking about?” Lucy asked impatiently, thinking if she had to kill them both now, at least no one would ever find the bodies. Still, it would be tough, two on one, and those two so big, with guns and a razor.

“Far from civilization? A safe haven? No one around for miles? What are you cooking up, Lu? Trying to get us caught, or just plain turning us in? Do you really think I’d believe that all this was built miles from nowhere?”
He pulled his Glock from the duffel and stalked toward her with the weapon held at arm’s length. Mallory just watched.

On the other hand, Lucy thought, there’s something to be said for close quarters.

Quick as a heron's strike she attacked the gun directly, pushing the slide out of battery so it couldn’t fire. They stood that way for an instant, Edgar armed with his useless weapon, knowing, suddenly, Lucy had all the power. The next moment she twisted and pulled his arm and had him on the ground, the gun in her own hand. She tapped and racked it, clearing the chamber in case a round got jammed in the manhandling, and pointed it at Mallory while she knelt on his brother.

Shoot Mallory now, every fiber of her instinct urged. No, her heart said, because Edgar will never forgive me. I don’t want that.

She locked eyes with Mallory.

“This is my home, my territory. I can live out here naked, kill what I want to eat, destroy whatever threatens me. I have fangs and claws you can’t imagine.” She bared her gleaming teeth.

Mallory couldn’t look away. He ran his thumb along the dull edge of his razor and stared into eyes like the rippling black of midnight water, animal eyes.

She let Edgar up and handed him the Glock.

“I don’t need a gun to take you on,” Lucy whispered.

Format: Kindle Edition
File Size: 542 KB
Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
Publisher: Laura L. Sullivan (July 6, 2011)
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services
Language: English


Monday, 18 July 2011

Guest Post: Karina Halle - Characters in Darkhouse

Darkhouse by Karina HalleDarkhouse

by Karina Halle

Paperback, 323 pages
Published May 1st 2011 by Metal Blonde Books
ISBN: 9781461079859
There’s always been something a bit off about Perry Palomino. Though she’s been dealing with a quarter-life crisis and post-college syndrome like any other twenty-something, she’s still not what you would call “ordinary.” For one thing, there’s her past which she likes to pretend never happened, and then there’s the fact that she sees ghosts. Luckily for her, that all comes in handy when she stumbles across Dex Foray, an eccentric producer for an upcoming webcast on ghost hunters. Even though the show’s budget is non-existent and Dex himself is a maddening enigma, Perry is instantly drawn into a world that both threatens her life and seduces her with a sense of importance. Her uncle’s haunted lighthouse provides the perfect catalyst and backdrop for a mystery that unravels the threads of Perry’s fragile sanity and causes her to fall for a man, who, like the most dangerous of ghosts, may not be all that he seems.
Buy Darkhouse by Karina Halle: Amazon (Print) / Goodreads (epub) / Kindle

Guest post by Karina Halle:

How it all started

When Aleetha asked me to speak about my characters, Perry Palomino and Dex Foray, in the Experiment in Terror Series, I was at a loss where to start. Both characters are deceptively complex, fully rounded and unapologetically flawed. They are as real as they can get while functioning in the most unreal circumstances. You see, they are amateur ghost hunters, trying to make something out of a fledging webcast and, consequently, make something of their lives. Almost everyone can relate but in most cases…they don’t want to. Who wants to be able to see ghosts, other than Jennifer Love Hewitt? I know I don’t.

Anyway, while I was contemplating what direction to go on with this blog post, I thought it might be fun to discuss how the idea and the characters came around. And so, I am sharing with all of you something I haven’t shown anyone else. This was the idea that hit me in July of 2009 while sitting in the backseat of my boyfriend’s parent’s rental car while we were “vacationing” in Ontario. Perry Palomino hit me like a stack of bricks. And the only thing I really had to go on was her name (and please keep in mind I wrote all of this on an iPod Touch Notepad!):

Perry Palomino – Ghost Writer

21 years old. New grad with a degree in journalism and English. Had no
luck finding jobs due to the economy and her procrastination.
Waitresses while living at home. Has a 14 yr old sister. Has a blog
that takes up a lot of her time-she uses it for bitching about
waitressing stuff. Her sister is a wannabe designer and sometimes
showcases her clothes. Perry doesn’t know what she wants from life and
admires her sister for having such a clear focus and drive. Most of
all Perry really loves scary books, movies and folklore. Her parents
have family all over the place. They live outside of Athens, Georgia.
She goes on vacation with her family to the coast and has a scary ghost
experience-she ends up writing about it on her blog except really
exaggerating about what happened. She ends up getting a lot of hits on
her blog-while on vacay-so she does more posts including a video one
which end up being a youtube hit. When she returns home she gets all
this attention from ghost-centered media as well as more interest on
her blog. Seems people see her as a kind of ghost whisperer even tho
she’s not. So she ends up being contacted by some people in Georgia who
want her to investigate and blog about the supposed ghost on their
farm. She goes, planning to fully rip off the story and make stuff up.
Instead she gets involved in an actual ghost story that challenges her
very notion of their existence and of her own. When challenged with
the notion of life after death and the fleetingness of death, Perry
realizes there is more to life-her life-in general.

Yeah…so that was the original idea for Experiment in Terror. And what did I do after I hastily plonked this out on my iPod and sucked down beers at my boyfriend’s family reunion? Nothing. I did nothing. I forgot about the idea as I often do (I have stacks of notebooks filled with unused screenplay and novel ideas) and went on with my life. Except Perry Palomino kept nagging at my subconscious. Every other day. I’d be at work and I’d be thinking of her, I’d be driving home from work and I could hear her talking to her sister, who I then I still called Ada. And this all boiled together until September when I decided I was going to write the damn book. It was going to be a series. And I would finish the first novel in a month.

Well, I didn’t finish Darkhouse in a month (which was under a different title at the time) but it did only take six weeks. And, boy, there were a lot of changes. Looking back to the original plan I posted, these are all the things that evolved:

  • Perry is 22, not 21. That year makes a little bit of difference.
  • She’s a new grad, just with advertising and not journalism
  • Perry doesn’t seem to have a procrastinating problem (lucky thing) and is a receptionist, not a waitress
  • Her sister, Ada is 15 and has the blog, not Perry
  • Perry’s not really a huge paranormal enthusiast
  • They live in Portland, Oregon, not Georgia
  • She goes to her uncle’s farm on the Oregon Coast on her own will and is met with resistance, not invitation
  • She never plans to “pretend” to be a ghost whisperer. She just shows up

The most glaring omission (or should I say, glaring addition) to the Darkhouse story is Dex Foray. Neither a partner, friend or love interest (and Dex is pretty much all three) are mentioned in my original “outline.” Somewhere along the line I must have dreamed Dex up and all his eccentricities and threw him right into Perry’s path. I’m so glad I did. I wouldn’t have a story if it weren’t for him. As interesting and relatable as Perry is, the series rests on the laurels of the relationship and chemistry of our two main leads. Don’t get me wrong, Perry has a sordid past, and the plotlines of running a ghost-hunting show, as well as her lapses of sanity are very frightening, poignant and important. But without Dex, there is no series. This is their story, their journey, together. You can’t have one without the other.

It’s fun to look back and see where the ideas and the characters came from. But there’s a reason why they say “writing is rewriting”- it took months, even a year, of exploring, writing and plotting before I finally found the formula that worked and the characters who would become…well, larger than life.

Buy Darkhouse by Karina Halle: Amazon (Print) / Goodreads (epub) / Kindle

Karina’s sadly neglected personal blog can be found here: www.ontheblogbandwagon.blogspot.com
Karina’s not so neglected writing blog can be found here: www.experimentinterror.com

Sunday, 3 July 2011

Graphic Novel Review : Storm Born Volume #1 By Richelle Mead

Eugenie Markham never asked for any of this. Until now, she''s been content with her job as a freelance shaman, battling and banishing Otherworldly creatures. When a prophecy suddenly makes her the Otherworld''s most popular bachelorette, Eugenie finds herself fighting off unwanted supernatural suitors, as well as the evils that begin emerging from her past...(Goodreads)
My Thought
First I would like to say thanks to Patrick from Sea Lion Books who has shared with me the first two parts of this Graphic Novel. Storm Born, I have not read the novel. Vampire Academy is the only book of Richelle Mead that I finished. I have been looking forward to read the graphic novel since I saw the cover in some blogs. It was intriguing me since its first page.

In this first two parts, Storm Born introduced me to Eugenie, a shaman. She made this become her job. She even had a secretary to handle all her clients' calls. Eugenie was so powerfull yet awesome. She looked so calm. It seemed that she faced nothing. It was not easy to send the spirit to the other world but she enjoyed all the process. She could handle all those annoying spirits and all the cases were closed. Till one day, her secretary called her there was one mad who needed her help. He shared one a different case. It was not spirit but fairy. Eugenie was little bit confused to take the case or not. Because she never faced any kind of cases like this. Unfortunately I do not what happened next. As I have said before I just read the first two parts. Can't hardly wait till the finish copy is released. I hope I can get the chance to read it.

What great from this novel graphic is not only the idea, but also the way they turned everything inside the book into pictures. The characters, the places, even the spirit were drawn very well. Its colorful pages also caught my attention in the first place. The most important was It did not take time for me to get to know something about Eugeine. I loved to see all her expression and emotions. Not only Eugeine, the other characters were also in a great shapes. Reading this graphic novel and staring its each columns makes me want to read Storm Born the novel.

I recommend this Graphic Novel to all of you even if you have not read Storm Born. The one who loves Richelle Mead's novels especially who have read the series, I am sure you do not want to miss this one.

I have also checked they also have made The Vampire Academy into graphic novel. I am curious about it. I wonder the illustration of Rose and Lisa. I hope the artwork will be as good as what they gave me in Storm Born.

Eugenie looks so cool in that cover. I love it. But I am not sure If I have seen that expression. Black as the background make her looks so elegant.


Authors: Richelle Mead, Grant Alter, Dave Hamann
Hardcover: 120 pages
Publisher: Sea Lion Books (October 4, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0982818645
ISBN-13: 978-0982818640
Product Dimensions: 10 x 6.8 x 0.2 inches

Pre-order Dark Swan: Storm Born Volume 1 at Amazon

Friday, 1 July 2011

Review: Turkey Monster Thanksgiving by Anne Warren Smith

This year, instead of celebrating Thanksgiving in the family's traditional way by eating pizza in their pajamas, nine-year-old Katie wants to create the perfect holiday and be just like a "real" family. But by Thanksgiving Day, Katie has invited guests Dad didn't expect, festooned the house with what may be poison oak, and set the sweet potatoes on fire. Ultimately everyone sits down to a most unusual dinner—one that succeeds because it comes from the heart. (Goodreads)
My Thought 
At first Katie was fine with his father's plan for this year Thanksgiving. Instead of turkey for dinner, they were about to choose pizza. In that day, they would wear pajamas till noon, eat popcorn and watch football. She did not mind at all. She believed what her father said. Everything would be fine even if they did not celebrate that national holiday like another family. Since her mother left home, Katie could fully understand this year they were going to have a different year.

It was two weeks before Thanksgiving when her best friend, Claire Plummer, told her her family's thanksgiving plan. At first Katie did not care at all. She still stuck to the first plan. But Claire just could not stop talking about the party day after day. The more Katie heard about it, the more she thought that they also have to celebrate Thanksgiving like another normal family. Suddenly all things that she thought was fine seems horrible. 

Turkey Monster Thanksgiving is another book for children that I put in my favorite list. Most of characters are like-able. Katie and her father were my favorite. Claire was little bit annoying. But if she was not there, this book would be really plain. She is also counted as important character. One character that I think was failed with his role was Tyler. He did not act as his age. Whereas I expected he would be an adorable little brother. 

Everything about Thanksgiving was another thing that I liked from this book. Even though I do not celebrate Thanksgiving and read many thing related to it, I am still curious. 

Turkey Monster Thanksgiving was first published on September 28, 2003. Its format was Library Binding. They used this cover.What you saw above are the cover for paperback. It will be released on August 11, 2011. I wonder why it takes so long to publish the paperback. 

I like both of the cover. The first edition reminds me of old books when I was in elementary school. Most of the cover are printed this way.  It is so classic. It was nice to see little Tyler. But it looks like a mystery book. The paperback itself was designed very well. I can see Katie's worried face.  I like the color.


Author: Anne Warren Smith | Website
Reading level: Ages 4-8
Paperback: 112 pages
Publisher: Albert Whitman & Company (August 1, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0807581267
ISBN-13: 978-0807581261

Preorder Turkey Monster Thanksgiving at Amazon

#SS2014: The Riddle

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