At this time I will no longer be taking any new review requests or participating in any memes. There will still be author interviews, blasts, guest posts and occasionally reviews posted (as I climb through by TBR pile!!). Life is kind of hectic and I have to focus on a few other commitments before coming back full-time to my blog. Thank you to everyone that has supported me and I won't be gone forever. I will still be around on my social media sites!

CURRENT GIVEAWAYS


My interview over at The Art and Craft of Writing Creatively is HERE

Purchase my book Images of America: Detroit Lakes HERE

Thursday, December 29, 2011

All Things Kensington (1)

Since I have become a remote reviewer for Kensington Books I have been loving all the book promotions they do. To make you aware of all the fantastic things that Kensington are promoting, I will be doing a post every now and then with all the information! It will be called All Things Kensington and it will update you on new book releases and also deals and free books that are available. Remember that some of these are available for a very limited time so make sure you read the post right away!!

For my first post I wanted to let you know about a few things happening DECEMBER 29-DECEMBER 30!

To promote the release of CHANGELING DAWN, Kensington are giving away CHANGELING MOON for FREE at the major eBook retailers! Ends 12/30/2011 

by Dani Harper

ABOUT CHANGELING MOON
As the full moon approaches, Zoey has no idea of the changes that are coming, and only Connor can show her what she is, and help her master the wildness inside. With her initiation into the Pack just days away and a terrifying predator on the loose, the tentative bonds of trust and tenderness are their only weapons against a force red in tooth, claw…and ultimate evil. 


ABOUT CHANGELING DAWN
Run
Shadow and moonlight merge beneath her bare feet, the forest floor blurring as she flees the dogs and torches. Werewolf, monster—those are the names given her kind by the humans who hate them.

Hunt
Kenzie Macleod has spent her whole life hiding what she is, and she’s not about to open up to any man, even one as powerfully attractive as wildlife expert Josh Talarkoteen. But legend says that a Changeling cannot escape the call of her true mate, even in the wilderness of backcountry Alaska.

Mate
An isolated archeological site, a terrified Changeling cub, a shadowy research facility—as Kenzie and Josh face the ultimate betrayal, his obsidian eyes promise untold pleasure and hint at dark secrets of his own…


To promote the release of THE DEEPEST SIN, Kensington are giving away THE DEADLIEST SIN for FREE at the major eBook retailers. Ends 12/30/11!

 
by Caroline Richards

ABOUT THE DEADLIEST SIN
Dark Dreams
They had haunted Julia Woolcott all her life, but the strangest of all began with an invitation to a scandalous house party, and a game more dangerously arousing than any she’d ever imagined. 

Unbound Desires
Driven by his ruthless ambition, Alexander Strathmore would do anything to come face to face with the mystery man who’d challenged him to first debauch Julia, then destroy her. 

Deadly Sins
A wild shot…a frantic carriage ride through the night…a forbidden seduction. Rakehell adventurer and sheltered spinster, Alexander and Julia will break every rule of propriety to chase down their nemesis and consummate their unlikely passion. 


ABOUT DEEPEST SIN

Perfect Revenge
Just when Lady Meredith Woolcott thinks she is safe, the nightmare returns. A madman who will stop at nothing has her in his sights once more. This time, she must escape his clutches forever, or die trying.

Dangerous Deceit
Protecting Meredith was never part of Sir Richard Archer’s assignment. His duty is to pursue her… follow her every move… and let her be the bait that draws a murderous villain out of the shadows and into his grasp.

The Ultimate Risk
Against his orders and his every instinct, Archer refuses to let Meredith endanger herself—and she refuses to relent, forcing them to partner together to ferret out the threat. But the inferno of passion between them has its own seductive dangers, putting their trust to the test at every deadly turn…



Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Review: Tis the Season to be Sinful by Adrienne Basso


Tis the Season to be Sinful 
By Adrienne Basso
Available Now
Publisher: Zebra
Format: Paperback
Source: Publisher

FIRST LINE
Richard Harper was late.

Juliet Wentworth had it all; a loving husband and a house that was to become their dream house. After her husband passes away suddenly, Juliet is left living in the dowager house with her children and hoping that they can find someone to rent Highgrove Manor so that they have money to get out from under her husband’s tyrannical brother.

Richard Harper is trying to make it in London. It has been a tough go since leaving the Colonies and Richard is finding the English to be less than hospitable since moving three years ago. His ideas have been met with skepticism and resistance. But now things have change. He has elevated himself in society and now to get that final accreditation he needs to own a country estate. This leads him to Highgrove Manor and Richard meets the headstrong Juliet who is unwilling to let him buy the estate unless he marries her.

This is truly a heartwarming Christmas story. Richard thinking that he will just treat the marriage as a business adventure gets thrown head first into emotions that he at first wants to deny but then opens his heart to Juliet and her three kids. He has to overcome his fear and after confiding into Juliet he knows that he can trust her. Juliet too grows and knows that she must tread carefully around Richard at first but knows that eventually he will come around. Not much in way of conflict. Once Juliet marries Richard it seems her brother-in-law just disappears. The tension comes just between Juliet and Richard and their journey to find love with each other. A great romantic read with a happy ending.


PURCHASE TIS THE SEASON TO BE SINFUL

Monday, December 19, 2011

Review: His Mistress by Christmas by Victoria Alexander


His Mistress by Christmas 
By Victoria Alexander
Available Now
Publisher: Kensington Books
Format: Hardcover
Source: Publisher

FIRST LINE 
“He’s the one,” Veronica, Lady Smithson, said softly, more to herself than to the woman beside her.

Veronica has a goal this Christmas. She is going to find a man to be her lover, NOT her husband. After being a widow she misses having that comfort of a warm body in her bed. What she doesn’t want is to be controlled so she has decided not to marry again. Her sights are set on Sir Sebastian Hadley-Attwater, an explorer who has a bit of a reputation with the woman. He is perfect for her.

Sebastian, who has traveled all over the world is ready to settle down (little does Veronica know) and after meeting Veronica he has found the woman he wants to spend his life with. The only problem is, SHE propositions HIM and wants to only be lovers. Now he must convince her that deep down she wants to be married. 

Sebastian, thinking that no woman could possibly resist him, mentions to his nosy sisters that he is going to be married by Christmas. When he invites Veronica to his country estate, the sisters make the mistake of assuming that they have wed already and invite the ENTIRE family out. This makes for a very interesting balancing act that happens and some little white lies that have to be told. Funny and heartwarming is the best way to describe this holiday read. Veronica and Sebastian will charm you and make you feel the Christmas cheer that they try hard to give to their families and in the end give to each other. Recommended for all historical romance readers.



PURCHASE HIS MISTRESS BY CHRISTMAS

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Secret Santa Gifts



I received the following books that were on my wishlist and I was SO wanting for Christmas along with some yummy candy, a magnet and a nice Christmas Card from Terri @ Alexia's Books and Such...We both were participating in The Book Monsters Secret Santa this year!


I also received a package from my Bookworm Santa hosted by The Magic Attic! I was so excited when I came home to an Amazon package sitting on my doorstep...when I opened it up, inside nestled three wonderful books off my wishlist! There was a little note that said: Hi Kelsey! I hope these items make your Christmas very merry! Your Bookworm Santa 2011. And YES, these books did make me very merry! Thank you so much!!





Thursday, December 15, 2011

Interview+Giveaway: Author Elizabeth Kolodziej


A big welcome to author Elizabeth Kolodziej to my blog today! She sat down and answered a few questions about herself and her series the Last Witch and is also giving away an e-copy of both books in the series!
 ABOUT THE AUTHOR, ELIZABETH KOLODZIEJ
A year after Vampyre Kisses came out Elizabeth J. Kolodziej makes her way back into the author scene with the second book for the The Last Witch Series, Werewolf Descent. Currently, Kolodziej (pronounced KO-LA-G), is working on many different short stories for anthology books. Along with the third book for The Last Witch Series being under way. Kolodziej continues to travel and study the folklore of vampires, werewolves and witches in the hopes of expanding her knowledge and her stories.

AUTHOR LINKS

INTERVIEW
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
Lets see, I grew up in California for the first 12 years of my life and then moved to the east coast. Reading books was something naturally done in my family, so I grew up loving books. Everything about writing, reading, research, and so forth come second hand to me. Reading on the couch with my dog, Sherlock, and my cat, Ahmemotep, are some of the best times I have.

Can you tell us about your books in the Last Witch series?
The Last Witch series is a PNR about Faith, who finds out she is the last witch in the world, and Trent, her vampire boyfriend. In this world the Gods play a part in causing havoc and chaos. Currently there are two books out for the series, Vampyre Kisses and Werewolf Descent. Vampyre Kisses shows how Faith learns of her heritage and introduces the reader into a brand new kind of supernatural world, with a werewolf monarchy and the prince of werewolves playing a big part in the books; along with introducing a cross dressing psychic, a familiar that can fly, and a devilish mother with a secret of her own.

Werewolf Descent focuses a little more on the history of Zou Tai, considering I had a lot of readers asking about him and craving to know more. Now there will be a novella for Zou Tai but this book gives the reader a peak at his past. Faith and Trent have their own problems in this book though when their relationship becomes strained due to a psychic vampire, Vincent, coming into town desperately wanting to be with Faith. The second book is action packed with lots more steamy love scenes.

The third book in the series in Witch Devotions and will be out in 2012. This book is a continuation from the others and will be quite the dozy considering what happens at the end of Werewolf Descent.

What was your favorite part of the writing process of The Last Witch series?
The research! I am hands on when it comes to research for any of my stories when I can be. For instance, I wanted to really be able to describe Faith flying through the air. So I went parasailing to get an idea of how she would feel up in the sky with the wind at her face. I also love reading Greek Mythologies and old vampire folklore. One of the most difficult was researching werewolf folklore though. However I did find that the oldest story that mentions a werewolf is from Greek Mythology! I never knew that and found it almost kismet.

Where did the idea of The Last Witch series come from?
My love for Greek Mythology and the supernatural I would assume. There wasn’t just one thing in particular that gave me the idea for the series and it was a long process to write the first book. I think it was the character that truly helped out the most though. They were the ones telling me where the story was going.

When did you know you wanted to be a writer?
When I finished Vampyre Kisses. There were of course signs when I was younger. I always loved writing and it was my best subject in school. I wrote short stories all the time and had a very vivid imagination. But it wasn’t until I finished the first book that I looked at it and thought, ok what do I do with it now? That’s when I thought it might be something other people would like to read.

What is the most interesting comment you have received so far concerning The Last Witch series?
I had one reviewer say that I could give Tolkien a run for his money. I studied Tolkien in college and I have no clue how I could be as great as him. Then there was one comment I got about a reader wanting to kick me in the shins after they finished Werewolf Descent. I couldn’t stop laughing after I heard that one!

What has been the best advice you have ever been given?
Don’t read your reviews, along with every review is a good review. This is all true, I don’t read reviews less then 3 stars and even if I get a bad review it still means someone is talking about my books and me.

If you could ask yourself any interview question, what would you ask, and how would you answer it? Did you have an imaginary friend growing up? Yes, yes I did. I told my mother his name was Lucifer. I swear this is the honest to goodness truth. My family for one wasn’t religious so I don’t remember ever hearing that name. I knew about the devil but I don’t recall hearing Lucifer. Second, my mother is Jewish and my father Catholic but turned Agnostic. You can see why this was all very strange. If it makes you feel better he wasn’t around that long!

When you aren’t writing, what do you like to do?
Sleep! Haha. Being with my friends and making sure I have time for them is important to me. Traveling is something I love doing in my spare time, even if it is just a day trip. Being a nerd. Spending time with my kids (pets). I have a lot of different interests and will try anything twice; I’m the outgoing one in the group most of the time. So anything someone wants to do I am up for.

What is coming up next for you?
I really want to get the third book done and published along with getting a couple novellas out for the series. I know there will be one on Zou Tai but I’m also thinking of doing one on how the last witch died. Along with this, I love writing short stories for other publishing companies and getting into anthologies so I will probably be doing that. I am already in one book, I Believe in Werewolves, which was my first try at horror writing. Just keeping busy and writing, writing, writing!


VAMPYRE KISSES BLURB

Vampyre Kisses is an enthralling story about a young woman named Faith, who was content with her life, but deep down craved more excitement. Then a mysterious man named Trent enters her life and everything changes. Surprising to Faith, Trent is a green-eyed vampire from Ireland. She is even more surprised to find out that she is a witch, and the last of her kind.

Faith finds out that she is destined to restore her witch line and becomes more powerful as she gains confidence and knowledge, but danger lurks everywhere. Especially when unknown assailants steal the most important gems from the vampire master and werewolf royalty.

Now surrounded by a world full of mystifying vampires and werewolves, can Faith gain enough power to help her friends and rescue the stolen gems?


WEREWOLF DESCENT BLURB
Last witch in the world, Faith Scott, and her Irish vampire boyfriend Trent have just come back from fighting for their lives to recover the Vampiric Blood gem and Werewolf Moon gem. Thinking they could finally relax and work on the romance growing between them, they now meet a mysterious psychic vampire named Vincent who has his heart set on being with Faith.

Soon bizarre killings of Zou Tai’s werewolf pack begin, with rumors of an alchemist possessing the famed philosophers stone being the assailant; which, causes Faith to turn to Vincent for help in figuring out why the werewolves are being murdered.

It isn’t long before all those around them test Trent and Faith’s love, along with their abilities, once again. It is all Trent can do to keep Faith safe by his side while both go up against a deadly alchemist, deceptive gods, and having to rescue the werewolf prince; yet, after a deal with the God of Werewolves will Trent be able to save himself too?



GIVEAWAY
Elizabeth is giving away and e-copy of both Vampyre Kisses and Werewolf Descent to one lucky winner!! Just fill out the Rafflecopter form below to be eligible. Please read the contest rules. Contest is International and ends January 5, 2012!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Book Promo: Creative Spirit by Scott Nicholson


"Scott Nicholson is a writer who always surprises and always entertains."- Jonathan Maberry, Dust & Decay

A paranormal thriller by Scott Nicholson
Available Now
Publisher: Haunted Computer Books

After parapsychologist Anna Galloway is diagnosed with terminal cancer, she has a recurring dream in which she sees her own ghost at Korban Manor. She’s compelled to visit the historic estate to face her destiny and the fate of her soul.

Sculptor Mason Jackson has come to the manor to make a final, all-or-nothing attempt at success before giving up his dreams. When he becomes obsessed with carving Ephram Korban's form out of wood, he is swept into a destructive frenzy that even Anna can’t pull him from.

The manor itself has secrets, with fires that blaze constantly in the hearths, portraits of Korban in every room, and deceptive mirrors on the walls. With an October blue moon looming, both the living and the dead learn the true power of their dreams.

View or sample Creative Spirit at Amazon US, Amazon UK, Kobo, Smashwords, BN.com, or Goodreads. Look for Liquid Fear and Chronic Fear from Amazon’s Thomas & Mercer imprint.

--------------

CREATIVE SPIRIT is Scott Nicholson’s revised edition of the 2004 U.S. paperback THE MANOR. Scott is Kindle bestselling author of 12 novels, including THE RED CHURCH, DISINTEGRATION, LIQUID FEAR, and SPEED DATING WITH THE DEAD. Connect with Scott on Facebook, Goodreads, LibraryThing, Twitter, blogspot, website or Amazon page


Guest Post + Giveaway: The Kure by Jaye Frances

Thank you, Kelsey, for inviting me to visit with your readers today. I really appreciate the opportunity to talk about The Kure and to give your readers a little insight into the background of the book.

First and foremost, The Kure is a love story, and yes, it fits nicely into the popular genre of paranormal romance—typically full of passionate vampires, confused werewolves, and wary but curious women who eventually opt for a little sack time with the irresistible undead.

The Kure was originally intended as a short story, to be included in a collection of similar genre tales, but the main characters—John and Sarah—wouldn’t leave me alone. And after several nights of their constant badgering about new characters, evolving relationships and a surprising supernatural twist, they convinced me that there was a lot more story to tell.

Because The Kure would be the first book in the series, I wanted to create a solid foundation for the sequels. I also wanted to tell a story with more conventional origins, with a setting and characters based on some degree of historical accuracy—in other words, a story that could have actually happened. This meant establishing a historical basis for the origin of some of the more evil and sinister characters who, while of minor importance in the first book, will return as major influences in book two—The Karetakers. I found that touchstone in the significant undercurrent of mysticism practiced in the South during the mid-nineteenth century. From the subtleties of foot and horse soldiers carrying a talisman into battle to southern officers consulting with supposed warlocks and seventh sons before making tactical decisions, the practice of witchcraft and a belief in the supernatural was more than a myth.

That glimpse into the mindset of an alternative minority – the same group of people who would have believed in demonic-based healing—provided a fertile backdrop to discretely introduce the influence of druidic red magic, a theme that will have an expanded impact on the characters and their actions in the next installment of the story.

Here is a brief synopsis

The story takes place in 1860’s Kentucky, when John Tyler, a young man in his early twenties, discovers he has contracted a ghastly affliction affecting a most sensitive part of his body. When the village doctor offers the conventional, and potentially disfiguring, treatment as the only cure, John tenaciously convinces the doctor to reveal an alternative remedy—a forbidden ritual contained within an ancient manuscript called the Kure.

Although initially rejecting the vile and unholy rite, John realizes, too late, that the ritual is more than a faded promise scrawled on a page of crumbling paper. And as cure quickly becomes curse, the unholy text unleashes a dark power that drives him to consider the unthinkable—a depraved and wicked act requiring the corruption of an innocent soul.

Ultimately, John must choose between his desperate need to arrest the plague that is destroying his body, and the virtue of the woman he loves, knowing the wrong decision could cost him his life.

Here’s a short excerpt

Although still covered with a layer of dust, John could see the book’s blood-red binding was ornately stamped with strange markings, the front cover finely tooled with a border of scrolls and flourishes. In the very center, a single word served as its title:
KURE

While the main part of the cover appeared to be bound with the familiar cowhide common to the rest of the doctor’s library, the outer trim was thinner and nearly transparent. John wondered if the material had been taken not from an animal, but from a different kind of donor.

The doctor scooted his chair back and sat, his full attention seemingly captured by the elaborately detailed cover. “Are you sure, John?” Harwell asked without looking up. “Are you absolutely sure you want to know this?”

He could hear it in the doctor’s voice—a final chance to turn back, to reconsider his decision to ignore the possible penalties of both law and Church. John answered without hesitation. “Yes. Please.”

Lucius Harwell raised his glazed eyes. “Come over here and lay your hand on the book.”

It seemed like a strange request. John could only assume the doctor wanted him to make some kind of symbolic gesture, acknowledging that his demand to learn from the forbidden script had made him a willing accomplice in breaking the sacred bond of secrecy.

As he placed his palm on the leather—if that’s what it was—John took a closer look at the extravagant design now framing his hand. What he had originally assumed to be symbols were actually bizarre and grotesque figures—creatures clearly not human. Some were portrayed in agony and suffering, while others were shown coupled with naked female forms.

****

I’d like to conclude by sharing a few details about myself. I was born in the Midwest and grew up surrounded by traditional values and conservative attitudes (which I quickly discarded). I’ll readily admit that my life’s destination has been the result of an open mind and a curiosity about all things irreverent, and I invite visitors to my website with a friendly caveat: “Be forewarned, my life has not followed the traditional path of homemaker, wife, and mother.” When I’m not consumed by my writing, I enjoy cooking, traveling to all places tropical and “beachy” and taking pictures—lots of pictures—many of which wind up on my website. I live on the central gulf coast of Florida, sharing my home with one husband, six computers, four cameras, and several hundred pairs of shoes.

AUTHOR LINKS

LINKS FOR THE KURE

GIVEAWAY
As a giveaway, Jaye has graciously offered one (1) Kindle version of The KURE to one of my readers! Just fill out the Rafflecopter form below for a chance to win!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Teaser Tuesday: Silent Kills by C.E. Lawrence



Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

Grab your current read
Open to a random page
Share two "teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page!
He looked at the lady next to him with the worn cloth bag and jaunty little hat. He wondered what she would say if she knew she was sitting next to a monster. ~pg. 129

Review: Storm Born, Issue 01 by Richelle Mead


Storm Born Issue 01 (Dark Swan Comic Series)
By Richelle Mead,  Grant Alter
Artist: Dave Hamann
Available Now
Publisher: Sea Lion Books
Format: e-copy
Source: Publisher

FIRST LINE
I’d seen weirder things than a haunted shoe…

Eugenie (Odile) Markham, a shamanic mercenary, is a feisty red-headed tattooed heroine who all of a sudden is on every Otherwordly creature’s most wanted list (and they know her real name). She is approached by a client who wants her to enter the Otherworld in her real form and not her Swan form to find his sister who was taken by the gentry (fairies). This is a very dangerous job and she seeks the guidance of her stepfather, Roland. We learn a lot about Odile in these short pages and are left anticipating what happens next after she meets a mysterious stranger in a bar and heads home for some fun only to find out he is more than a normal veterinarian.

This is a new genre for me to review. Graphic comics have not been on my radar before but after reading Dark Swan: Storm Born, Issue 01 I have found a new genre that I am enjoying. It is fun to see the characters come alive and take on a life of their own. With the help of scripter Grant Alter and artist Dave Hamann, Mead takes her Dark Swan books to a whole new level. The graphics are beautiful and the storyline grabs you from the first page.


ORDER STORM BORN ISSUE 01

PRE-ORDER STORM BORN VOL 1

PREVIEW THE FIRST FEW PAGES


 


BLOG CREATED JUNE 20, 2010