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I love me some horror stories and this is a great post about why!!

Originally posted on Kristen Lamb's Blog:

Image via Flikr Creative Commons, courtesy of Sebastian Dooris

Image via Flikr Creative Commons, courtesy of Sebastian Dooris

Horror is probably one of my favorite genres and always has been. When I was a teen, we didn’t have YA. We had Dean Koontz, Stephen King, H.P. Lovecraft and Clive Barker. My parents were thrilled I was reading. I wonder how they would’ve felt had they known what I was reading. Yet, growing up, I couldn’t get enough scary books or horror movies and not much has changed.

Even now, when life is stressful, out of control, or I’ve had a day that’s simply served me my own tail-end on a platter, what’s my favorite outlet? A good scary movie. Not slasher flicks, but horror; terrifying, well-thought stories. In a way, I find this strange, since I dedicate most of my waking hours to making other laugh, empowering them, teaching them and encouraging them.

So why, of all things, would…

View original 1,626 more words

I’m always all about the success of writers. More books is always good! To that end, the lovely and talented Jade Kerrion is releasing Perfection Challenged, the fourth book in her Double Helix series.

Below is an excerpt from the novel :) Enjoy!!

“The best of the four books…the perfect ending to an amazing series.”

Enjoy an excerpt from Perfection Challenged, the thrilling conclusion to Jade Kerrion’s multiple award-winning, bestselling DOUBLE HELIX series. If you’ve never picked up the DOUBLE HELIX series, keep reading for a special offer on the six-time award-winning novel, Perfection Unleashed.

Perfection Challenged

“I have to get back to work,” Danyael said, adjusting the crutch under his left arm.

Alex Saunders, director-general of the Mutant Affairs Council, frowned. “Did Abd-al not explain to you the dangers of pushing your body too hard, especially given your situation?”

Danyael shrugged. “Live or die, the bills have to get paid, and gene therapy is expensive.”

“That’s what I’ve come to talk to you about.” Alex gestured at the lounge area tucked in a corner of the hospital suite. “Will you sit?”

Since Alex had been kind enough to open with politeness instead of threats, Danyael complied. Alex waited until Danyael claimed the armchair before lowering himself onto the couch. “We’ve been monitoring you, Danyael. I’m sure you know that. You’re one of the world’s most powerful alpha empaths, and you don’t have the luxury of privacy.”

Danyael said nothing.

“I know you want nothing to do with the council, and I’ve done my best to respect your decision.” Alex looked pained. “When you went to Nelson Harris to schedule the amputation, it was all I could do not to interfere. We both know the council healers could have healed you. In fact, they want to help. You have many friends, whether or not you know it, or care. You’re a fighter, Danyael. I don’t doubt your will to survive, but this…this newest crisis is beyond you. You’ll have enough difficulty finding a donor. Paying for gene therapy—”

“I may not be able to afford gene therapy but I can’t afford the council’s favors either.”

“Danyael, we can help. We want to help.”

He looked away, a bitter smile twisting his lips. “You need stronger psychic shields, Alex. I can sense the lie. What is the trap that you want me to walk into?”

Alex shook his head, the gesture sad and slow. “We need you to bring Galahad in.” He slid a tablet across the coffee table.

Danyael picked up the tablet and perused the article as Alex continued speaking. “You know Senator Sullivan’s daughter, don’t you?”

“Yes, Chloe. We dated briefly when we were at Harvard University.” Danyael’s brow furrowed. “What does Galahad have to do with the senator’s death? The article specifically says that he died of smoke inhalation.”

“John Sullivan was one of Galahad’s genetic donors, and the twenty-fifth of thirty donors to die in the past three years since Zara freed Galahad from Pioneer Labs. We don’t have physical evidence to tie Galahad to any of their deaths—”

“Yet you’ve judged him guilty based on circumstantial evidence.”

Alex winced. “You must understand. We have an obligation to investigate and to keep his surviving donors safe. If he’s guilty, if he is indeed hunting down his donors, you’re the only one of the five remaining donors who can stop him. No one else stands a chance against the epitome of perfection.”

“I’m surprised you think I do.”

“No one else can kill with a touch.”

****

perfection-challenged-600x800PERFECTION CHALLENGED

An alpha empath, Danyael Sabre has survived abominations and super soldiers, terrorists and assassins, but he cannot survive his failing body. He wants only to live out his final days in peace, but life and the woman he loves, the assassin Zara Itani, have other plans for him.

Galahad, the perfect human being created by Pioneer Labs, is branded an international threat, and Danyael is appointed his jury, judge, and executioner. Danyael alone believes that Galahad can be the salvation that the world needs, but is the empath blinded by the fact that Galahad shares his genes, and the hope that there is something of him in Galahad?

In a desperate race against time and his own dying body, Danyael struggles to find fragments of good in the perfect human being, and comes to the wrenching realization that his greatest battle will be a battle for the heart of the man who hates him.

E-books available at Amazon / Amazon UK / Apple iTunes / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / Smashwords

Paperbacks available at Amazon / Amazon UK

PERFECTION UNLEASHED Perfection Unleashed

“Higher octane than Heroes. More heart than X-Men.”

Recipient of six literary awards, including First place in Science Fiction, Reader Views Literary Awards 2012 and Gold medal winner, Science Fiction, Readers Favorites 2013.

FOR A LIMITED TIME, E-BOOKS AVAILABLE FOR JUST $0.99 (Discounted from $2.99)

E-books available at Amazon / Amazon UK / Apple / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / Smashwords

Paperbacks available at Amazon / Amazon UK / Barnes & Noble / Book Depository

Connect with Jade Kerrion: Website / Facebook / Twitter

There will be no pictures in this particular post.

Cause while these things scare the bejeesus out of me, I can look at pictures without a panic attack. But some of my online friends cannot.

And screwing with someone’s phobias is mean. Don’t do it.

Anywho. I don’t like bugs and other creepy crawlies. There are exceptions, of course. Lady bugs are adorbs. I rather enjoy pill bugs too, cause they’re cute.

But as a general rule, I have issues with anything that has more than four legs.

The ultimate in creepy, crawly things that will make me scream like a little girl = Spiders. These things aren’t of this earth. I’m absolutely certain they are some sort of alien spy, figuring out our weaknesses and plotting the invasion and ultimate enslavement (read: making us food) of the planet.

I watch that one part of LotR with my hands over my eyes, or I just get up and wander out of the room for a minute.

There’s a reason for this!

When I was nine, we were living in a rural place that just begged for child eating critters to sneak in and nom my limbs in my sleep. There was always something with too many legs hanging around. I coped okay, stomping upon them with extreme prejudice. Until…

My bathroom was all tile and the shower took up a whole wall. Not like a shower/tub combo. A huge open shower, with a little wall to shield it from the rest of the bathroom. It was also slightly sunken, so that I didn’t flood the bathroom every time I showered. Incidentally, it was also pink and this might have something to do with my aversion. Just saying.

I was innocently showering one evening. All lathered up and bubbly. MINDING MY OWN BUSINESS!! And over there, against the far wall, a huge spider decided to take its evening constitutional. In. My. Bathroom.

I usually have a live and let live policy here. I don’t bug the critters, as long as they stay in their area, which is NOT IN THE HOUSE. Once they set multiple legs inside, I have the right to smoosh.

So, of course, I smacked it with a shampoo bottle.

That really should have been the end of things, and I lived happily ever after, blah blah blah.

Yeah no.

The little bastard BURST spewing millions of baby spiders all over the wall and floor. And if that isn’t enough to cause terror in the heart of any child, I don’t know what is. Unless of course it’s Tim Curry crawling out of a freaking drain. But that’s a whole different post.

There I was, huddled in the corner farthest from the nasty spider invaders, screaming like I was being murdered. My grandparents came running in to see who was killing me. My grandfather (obviously a very smart man) took one look at the spiders, did an about face, and hauled ass out of the bathroom, leaving my grandmother to dispose of the eight-legged terrors and calm the screaming child.

I can’t really blame him. I’d have run and left me to die, too.

So there you have it folks. I will scream like nobody’s business over a spider. Fake spiders. Real spiders. Spider pictures. You name it, I need a flamethrower to kill it.

How about you?

[So. This happened on Sunday, September 1. And because I'm a total ding-a-ling, I missed the big day. But goshdarnit, Jessa Russo is amazing and wonderful and I want to post this and do what I can to help out :) If you haven't picked up a copy yet, do it! You won't be sorry :) I know that some of it is out of date, but the important information is there!]

 
Happy Release Day, EVER! 
 
 
To celebrate EVER’s rebirth, and Jessa Russo’s first step into the indie self-publishing world, she is giving you the first chapter of EVER for FREE! Yup! FREE! You can read along, decide if you want more, then click on one of the buy links below to grab a copy for
yourself! *Paperbacks available soon!
 
Check out the FREE first chapter HERE
 
We’re also having some fun on Twitter
(details below), and Jessa has also compiled TWO prize packs of super awesome
stuff!
 There will be one (1)
lucky winner in the US, and one (1) lucky winner Internationally! Want to
know what we’re giving away? 
 
 


***GIVEAWAY FUN!***

The winner(s) will receive the following items:


 

US ONLY Prize Pack (ONE winner):

Set of 4: custom Frankie4Ever / Toby4Ever Coasters (2 of each) + Signed EVER bookmarks +

Signed paperback copy of EVER by Jessa Russo (YA)

Complete set* of The Darkness Falls Trilogy e-books from Krystal Wade (YA)

*Includes WILDE’S FIRE, WILDE’S ARMY and WILDE’S MEADOW

Signed paperback copy of EYRE HOUSE by Cait Greer (NA, adult content)

Paperback copy of THE CHARGE by Sharon Bayliss (YA)

Paperback copy of SEALED WITH A CURSE by Cecy Robson (A, mature content)



INTERNATIONAL Prize Pack (ONE winner):

E-book of EVER by Jessa Russo (YA)

Complete set* of The Darkness Falls Trilogy e-books from Krystal Wade (YA)

*Includes WILDE’S FIRE, WILDE’S ARMY and WILDE’S MEADOW

E-book of THE CHARGE by Sharon Bayliss (YA)

E-book of BROKEN FOREST by Eliza Tilton (YA)

E-book of THE VALENTINE CHALLENGE by Marisa Cleveland (A, mature content)

E-book of THE GATHERING DARKNESS by Lisa Collicutt (YA)

E-book of 1,000 SLEEPLESS NIGHTS by Connie Michael

ENTER HERE:

a Rafflecopter giveaway | a Rafflecopter giveaway


 

***TWITTER FUN!***


We’re also going to be tweeting a bit today, to celebrate not just EVER’s re-release (hashtag: #EVERTrilogy), but also playing up a major theme of the book–Ever’s love for her deceased best friend. We’ll be tweeting the theme with the hashtag #IfICouldBringBack and then sharing who we would bring back and why, or what we’d do with them, etc.

So, sticking with EVER as my example, the main female character of the series may tweet something like this:

#IfICouldBringBack Frankie, I’d finally tell him the truth. That I’ve loved him since we were in diapers. #EVERTrilogy 



Who would you want to bring back? An old flame? A relative? Maybe a famous author or dignitary? Think about it and join in the fun on Sunday, 9/1/13! We’ll see you on Twitter!

 



***BOOK DETAILS!***

 
EVER
The EVER Trilogy, Book One 
By Jessa Russo
September 1, 2013
 

Seventeen-year-old Ever’s love life has been on hold for the past two years. She’s secretly in love with her best friend Frankie, and he’s completely oblivious. Of course, it doesn’t help that he’s dead, and waking up to his ghost every day has made moving on nearly impossible. 


Frustrated and desperate for something real, Ever finds herself falling for her hot new neighbor Toby. His relaxed confidence is irresistible, and not just Ever knows it. But falling for Toby comes with a price that throws Ever’s life into a whirlwind of chaos and drama. More than hearts are on the line, and more than Ever will suffer.


Some girls lose their hearts to love. 

Some girls lose their minds.

Ever Van Ruysdael could lose her soul.
 
 
Jessa Russo’s Links:
 
 
 

Stay tuned for the second book in the trilogy, EVADE, set to release on October 1st, 2013! 

You can now add EVADE on Goodreads!


 
Remember to follow EVER’s 9/1/13 re-release day FUN on Twitter with these hashtags: 


 
#EVERTrilogy
and 
#IfICouldBringBack
 
 
 

[Since I had the privilege of posting about the other books in the lovely Jade Kerrion's Double Helix series, I was eager to help spread the buzz about Perfection Challenged! Happy almost release day, Jade!]

Perfection Challenged, the thrilling conclusion to Jade Kerrion’s multiple award-winning, bestselling DOUBLE HELIX series, will be released on September 17th and will be available in paperback and all electronic formats. Beta readers have declared Perfection Challenged “the best of the four books…the perfect ending to an amazing series.”

If you’ve never picked up the DOUBLE HELIX series, keep on reading for a special offer on Perfection Unleashed, the book that launched the DOUBLE HELIX series.

PERFECTION CHALLENGED

An alpha empath, Danyael Sabre has survived abominations and super soldiers, terrorists and assassins, but he cannot survive his failing body. He wants only to live out his final days in peace, but life and the woman he loves, the assassin Zara Itani, have other plans for him.

Galahad, the perfect human being created by Pioneer Labs, is branded an international threat, and Danyael is appointed his jury, judge, and executioner. Danyael alone believes that Galahad can be the salvation that the world needs, but is the empath blinded by the fact that Galahad shares his genes, and the hope that there is something of him in Galahad?

In a desperate race against time and his own dying body, Danyael struggles to find fragments of good in the perfect human being, and comes to the wrenching realization that his greatest battle will be a battle for the heart of the man who hates him.

perfection-challenged-600x800

PERFECTION UNLEASHED Perfection Unleashed

Recipient of six literary awards, including first place in Science Fiction, Reader Views Literary Awards 2012 and Gold medal winner in Science Fiction, Readers Favorites 2013.

 

“Higher octane than Heroes. More heart than X-Men.”

Danyael Sabre spent sixteen years clawing out of the ruins of his childhood and finally has everything he wanted—a career, a home, and a trusted friend. To hold on to them, he keeps his head down and plays by the rules. An alpha empath, he is powerful in a world transformed by the Genetic Revolution, yet his experience has taught him to avoid attention.

When the perfect human being, Galahad, escapes from Pioneer Laboratories, the illusory peace between humans and their derivatives—the in vitros, clones, and mutants—collapses into social upheaval. The abominations, deformed and distorted mirrors of humanity, created unintentionally in Pioneer Lab’s search for perfection, descend upon Washington D.C. The first era of the Genetic Revolution was peaceful. The second is headed for open war.

Although the genetic future of the human race pivots on Galahad, Danyael does not feel compelled to get involved and risk his cover of anonymity, until he finds out that the perfect human being looks just like him.

FOR A LIMITED TIME, E-BOOKS AVAILABLE FOR JUST $0.99 (Discounted from $2.99)

E-books available at Amazon / Amazon UK / Apple / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / Smashwords

Paperbacks available at Amazon / Amazon UK / Barnes & Noble / Book Depository

To be the first to receive news of Jade Kerrion’s latest book releases, sign up for her New Release Mailing List. If Perfection Challenge makes it to the bookstores before September 17th, you’ll be among the first to know.

Connect with Jade Kerrion: Website / Facebook / Twitter

View the electronic details here.

OR

Get the paperback version here.

I am cheerfully setting work aside to do a very, very long overdue review. I’m sure by now, we’ve all gathered that I love to read. I set my reading goal for the year at 150 books, but to be perfectly honest, I blow it out of the water. I’m also discovering that I like doing the whole review thing as well. Mostly because I want other people to like the books I like.

In this case it isn’t JUST about the book, although it’s freaking amazing. It’s also about the author. LeighAnn Kopans is one of the lovely people I stalk follow on Twitter. She is the very definition of awesome. ONESweet, inspiring, encouraging, supportive, and just generally a terrific person.

Does this really make her book better?

Hell yes, it does. No amount of love will make a bad book, good. But it definitely makes a great book, better. Because you sit there reading this terrific novel and in the back of your head the whole time is the knowledge that you know the author (even if it’s just through Twitter) and she is a truly fantastic human being. My joy in her success made reading ONE an even better experience.

Fortunately, for those of you who don’t follow LeighAnn around like a puppy, ONE is completely amazerful all on its own!

The Blurb:

When having two powers makes you a Super and having none makes you a Normal, having only one makes you a sad half-superpowered freak.

It makes you a One.

Sixteen-year-old Merrin Grey would love to be able to fly – too bad all she can do is hover.

If she could just land an internship at the Biotech Hub, she might finally figure out how to fix herself. She busts her butt in AP Chem and salivates over the Hub’s research on the manifestation of superpowers, all in hopes of boosting her chances.

Then she meets Elias VanDyne, another One, and all her carefully crafted plans fly out the window. Literally. When the two of them touch, their Ones combine to make them fly, and when they’re not soaring over the Nebraska cornfields, they’re busy falling for each other.

Merrin’s mad chemistry skills land her a spot on the Hub’s internship short list, but as she gets closer to the life she always wanted, she discovers that the Hub’s purpose is more sinister than it has always seemed.  Now it’s up to her to decide if it’s more important to fly solo, or to save everything – and everyone – she loves.

The Good:

The story is amazing. A fun, different take on superpowers. I read through it super fast to the exclusion of all else. There were many glares and sighs as my nose was stuck to the screen of my Kindle, but it was so worth it. Seriously, if I had all the moneys I would buy copies of this to just leave lying around for people to pick up.

This isn’t your usual spandex wearing superhero story. It goes deeper. I love the fact that in order to fly, you need a combination of powers that work together. I’d honestly never thought of it, but it makes perfect sense. Which is part of the draw for me. It makes me think: Oh yeah, that’s totally how that would work if we had superpowers.

LOVE IT!!

I also love the characters.

Merrin is such a great heroine. She’s smart, strong, and she knows what she wants. She loves fiercely and fights like hell to save her family. I just want to hug her.

Elias is totally swoon worthy. He’s the sort of boyfriend every girl should have in highschool. He’s sweet, confident, supportive.

The best part about their relationship, for me anyway, is that neither of them loses their sense of self. Yes, they’re in love and they can do amazing things together. But Merrin never gives up being herself or tries to be different to make Elias happy. Theirs is a healthy relationship that makes me all kinds of happy.

No bad. Just read it. You won’t be sorry!

This review is so horribly overdue, I cannot EVEN begin to say. All I can do is apologize profusely for the lack. Work blew up like nobody’s business and I’ve been running to exhaustion since about mid-May. Again, my deepest apologies to the ladies at Entangled and to Ms. Havens (whose work I really enjoy).

I could fill the whole blog post apologizing, but really, no one is here for that. Nor should you be!

View the details here.

In my fogged and totally out of it brain, it took me a minute to remember the book and why the name Candace Havens was so familiar. Well DUH. She was one of the authors featured in A Riveting Affair – A Steampunk Anthology. All the squees. I really love this woman’s work! I reread the first line of Take it Like a Vamp and immediately remembered the entire story. It’s pretty darn groovy.

Casey’s best friend is a super hot guy, and really, who doesn’t wish they had one of those! Hers also happens to be a vampire, a rather high ranking one at that. Naturally, Casey doesn’t believe that she is good enough for the hottie but still manages to end up right in the middle of a vampire power struggle with said hottie wrapped around her little finger.

I know what you’re thinking, but the truth is, no. Vampire stories never get old. They’re a whole lot of fun to read and this one is no exception. TakeItLikeAVamp

The Good:

I love Casey. She’s a terrific character. While she has insecurities, they aren’t enough to where she lets people walk all over her. She’s got some serious fight going on. One of the things that I really enjoy about her as a female lead is her strength. Yeah, her man is all kinds of alpha and intimidating, but she holds her own and stands up to him. Repeatedly. She insists on a partnership. For this alone I could totally kiss the author. In a non-creepy way, honestly. It isn’t just Nick she stands up to, though. She also kicks some serious ass when his psycho ex (from like a hundred years ago) shows up and tries to take a bite (literally) out of her.

Nick is the hottie, head of the council, vampire. He’s a pretty good guy, who has fallen in love with his neighbor. It’s sort of cute how he tries to resist her, being a vampire and all. But boy, does he jump at the chance to have Casey, when he has to get married, or else. He’s kind of a dumbass for not just telling her straight out from the get go that he thinks she’s amazing, but guys are silly like that sometimes, and where’s the fun in

Now, I know that I should be all swoony over Nick, and don’t get me wrong. He is totally swoon worthy, but his bff Linc totally steals the show. He’s got all of Nick’s swooniness and a smart ass sense of humor on top of it all. Every alpha male needs a best friend who keeps him grounded and tells him how things are without sugar coating, and Linc is that guy. I’m pretty sure he has his own book, but if he doesn’t yet, he really needs one!

The Bad:

There’s not a lot that I could pick out that irked me in this one.

Casey, while initially down on herself, really came into her own and shined like mad by the end of the book. Her self-esteem improved, but NOT just because she had a man. So there was nothing there to piss me off about her. I related on all kinds of levels. She’s really a wonderful character.

Overall:

Candace Havens had already impressed me in A Riveting Affair and she did so yet again with Take it Like a Vamp. I really enjoyed this and am seriously considering another read through. The writing is great and the characters develop really well. Especially my girl Casey! I highly recommend giving it a read, you won’t be disappointed!

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