Kindle Scout: A Win for an Author is a Win for a Reader

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Click to Nominate Rimrider
What the heck is Kindle Scout?
A few short years ago, Amazon launched a venture for new, never-before-published books where readers help decide a contract. Selected novels are published by Kindle Press and receive 5-year renewable terms, a $1,500 advance, 50% eBook royalty rate, rights reversions and featured Amazon marketing. The marketing part is a huge appeal. It’s the curse of most authors’ existence (I spit on you, hateful marketing gods!) Having Amazon shoulder the burden is a major plus.

If a book is approved, the author receives a preview link to check the data submitted along with the Kindle Scout campaign launch date. All campaigns last 30 days. The more nominations a book receives the more likely it will get the attention of the Kindle Scout team and be selected for publication.

Will the requirements make my head hurt?
Nope. Submissions are taken all year long and eligibility standards are simple. The manuscript must be submitted in English and be 50,000 words or more. Authors must be 18 years of age or older, have a valid Amazon account, and reside in a Kindle Scout–eligible country. Five categories are available: Romance, Mystery & Thriller, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Teen & Young Adult, and general Literature & Fiction.

Any downside with Kindle Scout for the author?
Isn’t there always? The author is responsible for the book’s cover art. It must look professional, be ready to go when the manuscript is submitted, and satisfy Amazon’s specifications. Unless you’re a professional graphic designer, expect to shell out money for an artist. The manuscript should also be professionally edited, free of typos and grammar errors. Paying for a good editor is a must. Kindle Scout doesn’t offer hardcovers or paperbacks, so if an author wants something to hold in his or her hot little hand, the printing cost are shouldered alone. For some, the lack of marketing decisions can be irksome. Amazon has total control. An author can’t run a 99 cent sale or post the first book in a series for free to drum up interest in the rest. Finally, the terms of the contract state the book will only be available on Amazon, so bye-bye Barnes and Noble, any other site, and all ereaders who can’t open a MOBI file.

What’s the benefit to a reader?
You’re allowed to vote for three nominations. If your choice is a winner, Amazon will send a free copy of the ebook upon publication. No muss. No fuss. The only cost was a few minutes of your time to check out the book. You also get to proudly strut around the room and brag to others about supporting indy writers.

Be honest. Do you think you really have a shot?
Let’s put it this way…Amazon labels the popular Kindle Scout nominations in the smoking hot category. Even on my best days I’ve only ever been labeled in the dorky and peculiar category. The odds of a win are minuscule, but it costs nothing to try. That being said I would greatly appreciate a vote for Rimrider by L. A. Kelley. It’s a science fiction space opera about a teenage girl who becomes a space pirate. Imagine the American Revolution with Earth as the redcoats and the colony planets as Yankee rebels and you get the idea. Intrigued? Click on the link and heartfelt thanks for taking a peek. Voting ends JULY 5.

Kindle Scout link for Rimrider:

L. A. Kelley writes adventure stories with fantasy, romance, humor and a touch of sass, and lurks at

Feature and Follow #32 (sites I follow)

Friday, June 17, 2016

What is Feature and Follow?

F&F is a weekly blog hop that consists of book bloggers. It is hosted by Alison Can Read and Parajunkee. The rules of involvement are simple:

1.) Link up on the blog hop Linky gadget below this post, 2.) follow the hosts via their network of choice, 3.) follow the weekly featured blog(s) via their network of choice (listed as "featured" in the blog list below), and lastly, 4) check out the rest of the blogs on the hop! If you become a new follower of a blog, let them know and they will follow you back.

The F&F is a great way to network, meet other book bloggers, and gain new followers. Even more so, it's a great way to drive fun discussion on a weekly topic.

This Week's FF: 

5 non-shopping sites you lurk around

I buy a lot of things online for both work and personal. So as I'm sitting here thinking of 5 non-shopping sites I use, I kinda laugh...because I wasn't sure if there were any! And I don't know if that's a sad reality or not... But alas I realized I'm not a complete shopaholic and that there are quite a few places I visit daily :)

In no particular order...

1. I will admit I'm a huge Buzzfeed fan. I don't necessarily go there for thought provoking articles (hah), but the variety of short topics and sometimes brainless humor is just what I need before falling asleep most nights.

2. Elephant Journal - I recently became a subscribing member so that I can have unlimited article access. I never subscribe to these kinds of things, so that's how much I love it. It's a variety of spiritual-type reading without much of the yuppy nonsense (I won't say it's completely void, but it is rare). The writing is meant to give motivation and make you think about topics without the bombardment of all of the bad news happening around the world.

3. ESPN -
I'm a total sports junkie and I can't watch all of the games (as much as I really try ;))

4. Best of Tumblr -
Another great place to go when you're in need of a good laugh...or hours worth.

5. My Fitness Pal - I'm very dedicated to health and fitness. I spend a lot of time on the phone app but also on the boards talking to fellow running junkies. It's free and it's a pretty great place to hang out if you can ignore some of the attention seekers...

Book Review: How May We Hate You by Anna Drezen and Todd Dakotah Briscoe

Friday, June 10, 2016

Just in time for summer travel season comes a book to tell how the other half lives. Not the rich and famous, but the nondescript concierge who only lives to serve. Or maybe not. The authors are two ex-actors who entered hospitality management to make ends meet between gigs. Needless to say by the title of the book, neither one found their true calling at the front desk.  How May We Hate You purports to give the dirt on what really goes on in the world of hospitality management, but doesn’t quite hit the mark.   

Quibbles and bits
The book is a short, quick read filled with vignettes and little drawings. The major fault is that it doesn’t go far enough and often reads as half done. It’s not gossipy enough to be a tell-all. The authors hint they’ve witnessed famous people acting in unprofessional or embarrassing manners, but don’t give names. Then why mention it at all? If you’re going to write a book like this and expect me to believe you, sorry, I need the dirt.  Otherwise, I’m going to think you made it all up.

There’s not enough substance in the writing for it to be an exposé on the life of the concierge either.  While heavy on the snark, it’s light on the details and often comes off as merely two people crabbing about their jobs. Mind you, the stories, vignettes, and little quirky lists aren’t badly written. They range from amusing to ho hum. Many of the drawings have whimsical charm. The authors apparently have a blog which is probably why much of the writing reads like rehashed posts. If you’re in the doctor’s office it’s a good way pass the time.  At a little over 100 pages you’ll probably breeze through it before called for the appointment. I did. In general, a reader will come away with more sympathy toward those who man the front desk, a chuckle or two, but not much else.   

Scratching my head on this one
I obviously don’t understand marketing.  The physical makeup of this book consists of heavy binding, sturdy cover, and pages of high quality paper. Why? It’s not the kind of book a person keeps forever. It’s a light read that takes about an hour, more fitting for a trade paperback found in an airport gift shop. Even the ebook is expensive at just shy of ten bucks.  I don’t get it.

I received this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for a review.

L. A. Kelley writes fantasies with adventure, humor, romance, and a touch of sass. You can find her at

Book Spotlight New Release: Spirit Ridge by L. A. Kelley

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Spirit Ridge

L. A. Kelley

A dark shadow rises.

San Francisco in 1885 was a dangerous place for those who crossed Colin Doyle. To Nob Hill elite he was a successful businessman. To the underbelly of San Francisco he was The Mick, a criminal mastermind ruling from the shadows. If a buyer’s tastes ran to opium, a whore, or a politician, The Mick could name a price. No one who betrayed him ever escaped the city alive.

Until now.

Nell Bishop is a fearless investigative reporter for the San Francisco Dispatch. She’s on the run to the Arizona Territory with the one witness who can expose Doyle’s corrupt empire and stop the plan to extend his evil dominion to the West.

Marshal Sam Tanner of Spirit Ridge in the Arizona Territory fought the visions sent by his Apache blood. They always foretold a death he couldn’t prevent. Then Sam dreamed of the coyote with golden brown eyes who warned of a black shadow spreading evil across the land. Did the message call him to help the beautiful woman who stepped off the stagecoach? Can Sam and Nell elude the mysterious dark riders who dog their trail or will the next vision mean death for both of them?

Adventure, romance, humor, and the call of Apache spirits weave together a Wild West adventure where either murder or justice can come at the twitch of a trigger finger.

Surprise shot through Bart’s expression. “Never reckoned you smart enough to figure the truth. The Mick’s reward ain’t for fetching you alive.” His tongue flicked in and out again. “Please me, and I’ll make it quick.”
Tears sprung to Daisy’s eyes. “Sweet Jesus, help me.”
Bart’s heartless chuckle encased Nell’s heart in ice. “Ain’t no God nor man gonna help a whore.”
“Get away from her this instant!” Nell stepped into the alley, right hand hidden in the tunic, finger on the trigger.
Bart raised the gun to meet the new arrival. “Where’d you come from? Best be on your way. This ain’t no concern of yours.”
Nell strode toward them through the fog. The gaslight shone on her white wimple and the scapular under the veil.
Daisy gasped. “She’s a nun, Bart. You can’t shoot a nun.”
“Shut up,” he barked, backhanding her across the mouth. “For five thousand, I’ll shoot anyone.”
  “Get out of here, Sister,” Daisy moaned. “Please, don’t get hurt on my account. I ain’t worth it.”
“Release her.” Nell’s tone betrayed not a single tremor. “If you beg trouble, sir, let fly. I guarantee you won’t live long enough for regrets.”
Bart’s thumb pulled back to cock the trigger. “Your words don’t cut nothing. The devil claimed me as his own long ago.”
“Then perhaps,” she responded coolly, “the time has come to meet your maker and beg forgiveness in person.”
A shot rang out. Daisy shut her eyes and screamed.

Buy Links

About the Author
L. A. Kelley writes adventures with fantasy, humor, romance, and a touch of sass. 
Twitter @AuthorLAKelley

Feature and Follow #31 (reasons you love a genre)

Friday, May 20, 2016


What is Feature and Follow?

F&F is a weekly blog hop that consists of book bloggers. It is hosted byAlison Can Read and Parajunkee. The rules of involvement are simple:

1.) Link up on the blog hop Linky gadget below this post, 2.) follow the hosts via their network of choice, 3.) follow the weekly featured blog(s) via their network of choice (listed as "featured" in the blog list below), and lastly, 4) check out the rest of the blogs on the hop! If you become a new follower of a blog, let them know and they will follow you back.

The F&F is a great way to network, meet other book bloggers, and gain new followers. Even more so, it's a great way to drive fun discussion on a weekly topic.

This Week's FF: 

10 reasons you love your favorite genre...

To do this, I'd have to pick a favorite genre. My tastes have greatly evolved in the past year and now it's hard to say. So I'll go with my latest love, Fae/Mage Fantasy.

1. If it's well written, there's no such thing as young adult or adult -- which I LOVE. If something is described as young adult, I have a tendency to turn away from it faster than I should. That is unless it's recommended by a friend (usually). What I've found about the fae and magic world is that a lot of the sloppy "young" adult writing is avoided (aka inappropriate maturity and overused tropes)...or maybe I've just been lucky!

2. They almost always come as a series -- It's pretty hard to build a fantasy world and a major plot in one book. So there's always a bonus book! Though my luck usually has me waiting a year for the next installment...

3. Creativity is unlimited -- Add a little magic in the mix and you can get away with taking the story anywhere! No boundries. Just an open imagination and complex character building.

4. Complex characters -- Building off of the last 2 points, the books tend to come in series and involve a lot of world building. Which means all of the characters have layers, including the secondary characters. I've found this especially true when the fae element is added, because not only is there a magic learning curve, but a fae-world learning curve which adds a whole new level of tension and excitement.

5. Odd character pairings are somehow pulled off -- Let's be honest, you put a 100 year old and a 17 year old in a normal "contemporary romance" relationship...and things get a bit weird. You put a 2000 year old fae/mage with a 17 year old and it's somehow sweet and spicy, hitting all of the taste buds.

6. Plots can be majorly twisted without a lead up --  Because magic. It makes anything possible.

7. Just when you thought someone died -- they didn't. Because magic.

8. There's always a ton of action

9. There's usually an element of romance -- without it taking over the story.

10. The names are memorable --  although some can get a little tricky and I'll get more caught up on trying to pronounce them than I should...

Join in on this week's Penny For Your Thoughts... blog discussion!

A Penny For Your Thoughts... hosted by The Book Cove
A hop where you leave a comment or create a blog post about a given quote and
are entered to win a monthly prize.

Other Posts Of Interest:

Remember to check your follow links regularly - by Jessi - November 22nd, 2014
5 easy tips for making your blog more user friendly for blog hops - By Jessi - December 27th, 2013
CAPTCHA challenge presented by The Book Wheel and The Relentless Reader - By Jessi - August 16th, 2013

Review: Stuck-up Suit by Vi Keeland and Penelope Ward

Wednesday, May 18, 2016


(Blurb): It started out like any other morning on the train.Until I became mesmerized by the guy sitting across the aisle.
He was barking at someone on his phone like he ruled the world.
Who did the stuck-up suit think he was...God?
Actually, he looked like a God. That was about it.
When his stop came, he got up suddenly and left. So suddenly, he dropped his phone on the way out.
I might have picked it up.
I might have gone through all of his photos and called some of the numbers.
I might have held onto the mystery man's phone for days―until I finally conjured up the courage to return it.
When I traipsed my ass across town to his fancy company, he refused to see me.
So, I left the phone on the empty desk outside the arrogant jerk's office.
I might have also left behind a dirty picture on it first though.
I didn't expect him to text back.
I didn't expect our exchanges to be hot as hell.
I didn't expect to fall for him―all before we even met.
The two of us couldn't have been any more different.
Yet, you know what they say about opposites.
When we finally came face to face, we found out opposites sometimes do more than attract―we consumed each other.
Nothing could have prepared me for the ride he took me on. And I certainly wasn't prepared for where I'd wind up when the ride was over.
All good things must come to an end, right?
Except our ending was one I didn't see coming.

Book Information:

Published: April 9th, 2016
Publisher: Amazon Digital Services, LLC
Genre: Romance
Age: Adult
Length: 328p


I was looking for a light read to decompress from work with when I ran across Stuck-up Suit. The first 1/4 of the book was pretty good. It was funny, snarky, playful, and I could tell where it was going. Which was fine -- I don't mind a straightforward book.

I expected a little more of a hold-out between the two MC as the story progressed. It moved pretty quickly and I think took away from some of the tension and fun that had just started to build between the MCs. Especially since they were portrayed as being from opposite ends of the tracks.

I didn't feel like we got to really know Soraya. She was unique and exotic -- and the 50 other descriptive synonyms for that description. She had daddy issues which hindered her romantic life and much of the book walked around these issues in the background.

As the plot progressed we find out about Graham and his past and why he's the "Mr. Big Prick" that he is today. I thought Graham's story was much more interesting than Soraya's. It stole the show for the most part. It was one of the few times where I better clicked with the mind of the "stuck-up suit" than I did with the female MC whom was sort of being dragged along with the story.

The ending was pretty cliche. Not just one trope of cliche, but every rom-com-drama trope tied into one. That's where the book really lost me. The last 1/4 I felt lost it's integrity and feeling. I ended up a casual observer of this fiasco of a relationship and ended the book feeling "meh."

It wasn't horrible by any means. I kind of knew what I was getting into before starting. But I was hoping for a little more, and think a lot more could have come from this had not so many cheesy things played out in the end. That ending blurb tag of "Except our ending was one I didn't see coming" would not be my first descriptive choice...

Book Review: Dead Wake by Eric Larson

Sunday, May 15, 2016

The best historical fiction transports a reader to a different time and place, so much so that pages come alive. The story is real. The same can be said for the best historical nonfiction. All senses are engaged; taste, touch, smell, hearing, sight. The reader not only comes away with a better understanding of historical events, but a complete picture of the world in a far-removed time. It’s the mark of a great book when you root for people to survive and forget they are long dead.

New York Times Bestseller, Dead Wake, is a vibrant telling of the last crossing of the steamship Lusitania. No stuffy compilation of facts, no dull recitation of times and dates. As Larson relates the story of the doomed ship and the passengers, readers are drawn along. It doesn’t take long to become vested in their survival. Will the young man headed to England for his engagement live? What about the little boy with measles confined to bed? His pregnant mother? The spiritualist? The book dealer with his priceless package? Larson uses a treasure trove of letters, diaries, and written reminisces to give each a unique voice.

Larson flicks the story between the major players; the passengers and crew of the Lusitania, the British Admiralty, President Woodrow Wilson, and the U-boat commander Schwieger. This is in no way confusing, but instead, reveals surprising details. Some are sweet. President Wilson wrote gushy love letters for his soon-to-be wife, Edith. Others are simply amusing. I never expected a description of life aboard a U-boat to include a dachshund with puppies who cuddled with the crew.  

Tragedy can sometimes approach a comedy of errors. The sinking of the Lusitania is no exception. Warnings of submarines sightings were ignored or never sent. People who needed vital information didn’t get it. Even simple pride played a large part. Few took seriously the German government’s warning that all ships flying the British flag were fair game. Even when they did, destroying the Lusitania was unthinkable. She was the biggest, fastest passenger ship afloat with more than enough lifeboats. Too bad safety drills weren’t mandatory. Maybe then passengers would have actually learned how to put on their life jackets.

Larson’s face-paced chapters build tension until the final moment when U-20 fires the torpedo. After that, the story turns to nail-biting anxiety as the ship quickly sinks. Heartbreaking tragedy follows when who lived and who died is revealed.

Dead Wake has no overly technical jargon or dull details. No one is painted as a villain. This is simply a great read that recreates an tragic historical event in remarkable detail. I recommend it to anyone who enjoys getting lost in another time and place, whether fictional or real. Any quibbles? Yes. Other than one map and one photograph of the Lusitania, the book contains no illustrations or pictures. The omission is disappointing.

I received this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for a review.

L. A. Kelley writes fantasies with adventure, romance, humor and touch of sass. You can connect at 

Guest Post and Author Interview: Andrew Joyce (and Danny the Dog) talks about new novel Resolution: Huck Finn's Greatest Adventure

Saturday, May 14, 2016

My name is Andrew Joyce and I write books for a living. Jessi has been kind enough to allow me a little space on his blog to promote my new novel RESOLUTION: Huck Finn’s Greatest Adventure. I think it’s a good book, but what do I know? Anyway, I’m kinda shy about tooting my own horn. So I think I’ll turn things over to my dog Danny—Danny the Dog. He always has a bad attitude and usually does not speak highly of me. But please understand that we co-exist as the old Soviet Union and the United States once co-existed. We tolerate each other. So without further ado, here’s Danny.

Andrew dragged me through the pouring rain so that I could be here to help him out. For a person that works with words for a living, he has very little to say in real life. He wants me to tout his book for him, but I don’t think I will. I’m in a foul mood today, so this communiqué will be short. It’s been raining for three days and three nights. One more day of this miserable weather and I’m going to have Andrew build us an ark. Well, maybe not, seeing as how we already live on a boat. We being myself, Danny the Dog and my human, Andrew.

The thing about rain I don’t like is that it’s wet. It soaks your fur; it keeps you inside when you could be out chasing cats or running down a tantalizing scent. And to top it off, it brings thunder with it. And I don’t like thunder! Another thing I don’t like about rain is that one has to go outside to do one’s “business.” Hey . . . I can hold it. I’ll wait until it’s dry outside, but Andrew insists that I go out at least twice a day. Rain or shine.

When it’s raining, Andrew puts on some sort of yellow getup that keeps him dry, but does he have one of those things for me? Nope!

For three days now, he’s taken me—against my will—outside with him in the rain. If I knew how to use a phone, I’d report him to the Humane Society. But I show him. When we come back, I jump up on the bed and roll around until I’m dry. I don’t mind wet sheets, but for some reason Andrew does.
So here I am trying to sell his book for him. And I know with a certainty that the big lummox is going to come to me when I’m done shilling for him and say, “Okay, boy. Let’s go for a walk.” And I’ll be thinking, “Okay, human; how about I just bite you instead?”

Here he comes. The next time we talk, I’ll let you know if we went out in the rain or if I bit him.
Oh yeah, I almost forgot—go out and buy Andrew’s new book and make the old guy happy.

This is Andrew again. On behalf of Danny and myself, I would like to thank Jessi for having us over. It’s been a real pleasure.

Author Interview:

Today, we’re sitting down with the authors Andrew Joyce and Danny the Dog for a joint interview, So, without further ado, let’s get started.

Thank you for agreeing to do this interview.
AJ: It’s a pleasure to be here.
DD: Me too.

Tell me a little about yourselves and your backgrounds?
AJ: I’m a writer, which surprises me greatly. For the first three years of my writing career, I never referred to myself as a writer. It was only when the royalties started coming in and I could quit my day job that I dared think of myself as such.
DD: I’m a dog.

What book or books have had a strong influence on you and/or your writing?
AJ: The works of Louis L’Amour and Robert B. Parker.
DD: The genius writings of Danny the Dog.
AJ: Excuse me Jessi, but I need to speak to Danny for a minute.
AJ: What are you doing, Danny? You don’t seem to be taking this interview seriously. You’re giving one-word answers and when asked about your favorite authors, you say yourself. I know all us writers think of ourselves as our favorite author, but you’re not supposed to say that out loud.
DD: Whatever! May we continue with the inquisition?
AJ: I’m sorry, Jessi.

That’s okay, Andrew. Danny and I understand one another. So let’s carry on. Going back to the beginning, what is it that got you into writing?
AJ: One morning, about five years ago, I went crazy. I got out of bed, went downstairs, and threw my TV out the window. Then I sat down at the computer and wrote my first short story. It was soon published in a print magazine (remember them?). I’ve been writing ever since.
DD: One day, about four years ago, Andrew went out and left the computer on. He was always complaining about how hard it is to write anything decent, so I thought I’d show him how easy it is when one has talent. Is that a long enough answer for you, Andrew?

Tell us a little bit about your writing process.
AJ: I prefer to write in the early morning hours when things are quiet. I usually get up around 2:00 a.m. and go to work. The commute is not long . . . only a few steps to my computer.
DD: I have to wait until Hemingway over there goes to bed.
AJ: By any chance are you referring to me?
DD: Yes, but only in an ironic way.
AJ: You see what I’ve got to put up with, Jessi?

Now boys, play nice. You are both professionals. What would your fans think?
AJ: You’re right, Jessi. I’m sorry.
DD: I’m the only one with fans around here. I’d say that Andrew’s been riding my coattails for years—if I had coattails. But for your sake, Jessi, I’ll try to be well-behaved.

That’s a good doggie. Do either of you have any hobbies? Or anything you like to do in your spare time?
AJ: I like to read history and do research for my next book. I also like to watch old movies from the 1930s and ’40s.
DD: My hobby is looking after his nibs here. I’m always getting him out of trouble or bailing him out of jail after one of his benders. I call him Hemingway because he drinks like Ernie did. You should see ol’ Andrew when he’s had a snoot full.

What are you two working on at the moment?
AJ: This interview.
DD: Ditto
AJ: High five, Danny.
DD: Next question, please, Jessi.
AJ: Hey Danny, don’t leave me hangin’.
DD: Pleeease, Jessi, the next question!

How do you develop your plots and your characters? Do you use any set formula?
AJ: I usually sit down to write a book with no idea where my characters will lead me. I start out with (I hope) a killer first sentence and the last paragraph of the book. Then I set out to fill the in-between space with 100,000 words. I find that the easy part. Sometimes I will bring my characters to a certain place, only to have them rebel when we get there. They’ll tell me they want to go somewhere else and take off on their own. I have no choice but to follow.
DD: That was a pretty artsy-fartsy answer.
AJ: Was not.
DD: Was too.
AJ: Was not!
DD: Was too. Was too. Was too!!!

Boys, boys, boys! If you can’t behave, I’ll have to end the interview. As a child, Andrew what did you want to be when you grew up? And, as a puppy, Danny, what did you want to do?
AJ: I never wanted to grow up, and I believe I have succeeded.
DD: I think he has, too. As a puppy, I only wanted to survive Andrew.

What would we find under your bed?
AJ: The monster that lives there.
DD: When it thunders, me (and Andrew’s monster).

If you could travel into the past or future, where would you want to go? Why?
AJ: Egypt. I’d like to see the Great Pyramid being built.
DD: The caveman days. I think it would be super-duper to be in a time before dogs allowed themselves to be “domesticated.”

What has been your worst or most difficult job?
: Some jobs I’ve had in the past have been real doozies. I’ve done back-breaking physical labor. I’ve worked as a waiter for a short spell and hated every minute of it. I worked with and breathed in chemicals that have done a number on my lungs. But the worst job I ever had was when I was eighteen. I worked at a McDonalds for one day. At the end of the shift, I walked out never to return. I didn’t care about the pay I was owed or anything else. I just wanted out of there.
DD: Looking after Andrew.

What group did you hang out with in high school?
AJ: I had no friends in high school. Still don’t . . . come to think of it.
DD: At last, Andrew has said one true thing! I, of course, had no need of schooling. I was born brilliant. Not to mention wonderful, marvelous, and good looking.

What is something that you absolutely can't live without?
DD: If you don’t mind, I’ll field this one for both of us. For Andrew, it’s vodka. For me it’s Andrew.
AJ: Aw shucks, Danny.
Thank you for stopping by. It’s been a little different. However, I believe we’ve learned a few things about your writing processes . . . and other things as well.
AJ: Thank you for having us, Jessi.
DD: Yeah, it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be.

(Blurb): It is 1896 in the Yukon Territory, Canada. The largest gold strike in the annals of human history has just been made; however, word of the discovery will not reach the outside world for another year.
By happenstance, a fifty-nine-year-old Huck Finn and his lady friend, Molly Lee, are on hand, but they are not interested in gold. They have come to that neck of the woods seeking adventure.
Someone should have warned them, “Be careful what you wish for.”
When disaster strikes, they volunteer to save the day by making an arduous six hundred mile journey by dog sled in the depths of a Yukon winter. They race against time, nature, and man. With the temperature hovering around seventy degrees below zero, they must fight every day if they are to live to see the next.
On the frozen trail, they are put upon by murderers, hungry wolves, and hostile Indians, but those adversaries have nothing over the weather. At seventy below, your spit freezes a foot from your face. Your cheeks burn—your skin turns purple and black as it dies from the cold. You are in constant danger of losing fingers and toes to frostbite.
It is into this world that Huck and Molly race.
They cannot stop. They cannot turn back. They can only go on. Lives hang in the balance—including theirs.

Author Bio:

Andrew Joyce left high school at seventeen to hitchhike throughout the US, Canada, and Mexico. He wouldn’t return from his journey until decades later when he decided to become a writer. Joyce has written four books, including a two-volume collection of one hundred and forty short stories comprised of his hitching adventures called BEDTIME STORIES FOR GROWN-UPS (as yet unpublished), and his latest novel, RESOLUTION. He now lives aboard a boat in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, with his dog, Danny, where he is busy working on his next book, YELLOW HAIR.

Connect with Andrew:
Barnes & Noble

Resolution: Huck Finn’s Greatest Adventure

Book Blitz: Recoil by Joanne Macgregor

(Blurb): There’s more than one enemy and more than one war. The Game is real.

Three years after a series of terrorist attacks flooded the US with a lethal plague, society has changed radically.

Sixteen year-old Jinxy James spends her days trapped at home – immersed in virtual reality, worrying about the plague and longing for freedom. Then she wins a war simulation game and is recruited into a top-secret organisation where talented teenagers are trained to become agents in the war on terror. Eager to escape her mother’s over-protectiveness and to serve her country, Jinxy enlists and becomes an expert sniper of infected mutant rats.

She’s immediately drawn to Quinn O’Riley, a charming and subversive intelligence analyst who knows more about the new order of government and society than he is telling. Then a shocking revelation forces Jinxy to make an impossible decision, and she risks losing everything.

Recoil is the first book in a Young Adult dystopian romance trilogy, and makes great reading for lovers of Rick Yancey (The Fifth Wave), Suzanne Collins (Hunger Games), and Veronica Roth (Divergent).

Book Information:
Publication date: May 14, 2016
Publisher: Independent
Age: Young Adult
Genre: Dystopian

Connect with Joanne:
Amazon Link:
GoodReads Link:
Author website:
Twitter: @JoanneMacg

Author bio:
When not writing, Joanne Macgregor is a counselling psychologist in private practice where she works mainly with victims of crime and trauma. Although she lives in the frenetic adrenaline-rush of the big city, Joanne has always been in love with nature, and escapes into the wilds whenever she can. She's a Harry Potter fanatic, bakes the best choc-chip cookies on the planet, and is addicted to chilies and bulletproof coffee.

She started her professional life as a high school English teacher and loves writing about, and for, teens. She is the author of several books for Young Adults - Scarred (2015), Turtle Walk (2011), Rock Steady (2013), and Fault Lines (2016).

Feature and Follow #30 (blurbs that got you hooked)

Friday, May 13, 2016


What is Feature and Follow?

F&F is a weekly blog hop that consists of book bloggers. It is hosted byAlison Can Read and Parajunkee. The rules of involvement are simple:

1.) Link up on the blog hop Linky gadget below this post, 2.) follow the hosts via their network of choice, 3.) follow the weekly featured blog(s) via their network of choice (listed as "featured" in the blog list below), and lastly, 4) check out the rest of the blogs on the hop! If you become a new follower of a blog, let them know and they will follow you back.

The F&F is a great way to network, meet other book bloggers, and gain new followers. Even more so, it's a great way to drive fun discussion on a weekly topic.

This Week's FF: 

What are some book blurbs that got you hooked? 

Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas
Product DetailsAfter serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin.

Her opponents are men-thieves and assassins and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the king's council. If she beats her opponents in a series of eliminations, she'll serve the kingdom for three years and then be granted her freedom.

Celaena finds her training sessions with the captain of the guard, Westfall, challenging and exhilirating. But she's bored stiff by court life. Things get a little more interesting when the prince starts to show interest in her... but it's the gruff Captain Westfall who seems to understand her best.

Then one of the other contestants turns up dead... quickly followed by another. Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.

A Different Blue by Amy Harmon

Product DetailsBlue Echohawk doesn't know who she is. She doesn't know her real name or when she was born. Abandoned at two and raised by a drifter, she didn't attend school until she was ten years old. At nineteen, when most kids her age are attending college or moving on with life, she is just a senior in high school. With no mother, no father, no faith, and no future, Blue Echohawk is a difficult student, to say the least. Tough, hard and overtly sexy, she is the complete opposite of the young British teacher who decides he is up for the challenge, and takes the troublemaker under his wing.

This is the story of a nobody who becomes somebody. It is the story of an unlikely friendship, where hope fosters healing and redemption becomes love. But falling in love can be hard when you don't know who you are. Falling in love with someone who knows exactly who they are and exactly why they can't love you back might be impossible.

Gardella Vampire Hunters: The Rest Falls Away by Colleen Gleason
Beneath the glitter of dazzling nineteenth century London Society lurks a bloodthirsty evil…

Vampires have always lived among them, quietly attacking unsuspecting debutantes and dandified lords as well as hackney drivers and Bond Street milliners. If not for the vampire slayers of the Gardella family, these immortal creatures would have long ago taken control of the world.

In every generation, a Gardella is called to accept the family legacy, and this time, Victoria Gardella Grantworth is chosen, on the eve of her debut, to carry the stake. But as she moves between the crush of ballrooms and dangerous moonlit streets, Victoria’s heart is torn between London’s most eligible bachelor, the Marquess of Rockley, and her dark, dangerous duty.

And when she comes face-to-face with the most powerful vampire in history, Victoria must ultimately make a choice between duty and love.

Run of the Mill by Dave Patten

Product DetailsFamous musician, 26 year old millionaire, and known playboy Tyler Clark finds himself launched into his repressed past after a chance encounter with an old friend during the after-party of one of his concerts. Under threat of blackmail, Tyler is forced to painfully reveal the truth behind a tragic summer of his youth... a summer that started with drugs, sex and good music, and ended in betrayal, hatred and suicide.

Patch Up by Stephanie Witter

Product DetailsSkye followed her long time boyfriend to Seattle for their first year of college, but he dumped her after only a week. The relationship brought only pain and destruction in Skye's life, and yet, she can't bring herself to open up and live her life.

"What if I am already broken into pieces?"

She hates to be touched, hiding under her oversized shirts and behind her wild frizzy hair. Even her bubbly roommate can't reach her. And yet ...

"I'm the guy who knows how you can hurt so much that your insides feel like they're cut and bleeding."

The tall, handsome, and tattooed TA in her psychology class changes everything when he literally collides with her and confronts her. For the first time in a long time, she wants to try and open up to this guy whose dark, intense eyes can't hide his own pain despite his dazzling smile getting to her.

However, just when she's starting to live again, her ex-boyfriend comes back, breaking her time and time again, making it all the more complicated.

She wants to fight for herself and for this building thing with the TA, even when he pushes her away, but can two broken people patch each other up?
"I never thought colliding with someone could change lives, but it is possible."

Join in on this week's Penny For Your Thoughts... blog discussion!

A Penny For Your Thoughts... hosted by The Book Cove
A hop where you leave a comment or create a blog post about a given quote and
are entered to win a monthly prize.

Other Posts Of Interest:

Remember to check your follow links regularly - by Jessi - November 22nd, 2014
5 easy tips for making your blog more user friendly for blog hops - By Jessi - December 27th, 2013
CAPTCHA challenge presented by The Book Wheel and The Relentless Reader - By Jessi - August 16th, 2013

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