Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Small Blog Makeover

Small Blog Makeover

So, I fianlly got a blog button. It's very simple and I'll probably change it eventually but here it is. What do you think?

 


I also made a few new ratings:


 Not Worth Your Time

  Unreadable

 Readable

Worth Your Time 

Must Read
 Halfs


And to finish it off, I made some book badges to add to my reviews and other posts:

 



So, what do you guys think?

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Review - Chasing Paris by Jen Carter

Title and Author: Chasing Paris by Jen Carter
Publisher: 
Publication Date: 2012
Paperback/Hardcover: 263
Genre: Contemporary Romance


Summary:
Amy Winthrow is shocked when her grandmother dies—not because Elizabeth Hathaway’s death is unexpected but because her existence had always been hidden. Ever-inquisitive and prone to letting her imagination get the best of her, Amy embarks upon a journey with an unlikely friend to unravel the mysteries of the elusive Lizzie Hathaway. As she follows the trail of broken dreams and promises of her grandmother’s life, Amy finds herself on a path of accidental self-discovery—a path that she chases all the way to Paris where Lizzie’s story ends and Amy’s begins.
  

Review:
I received this book from the author in exchange of an honest review.
Chasing Paris is the story of a girl – Amy - who receives a letter from a grandmother she never met and her whole life changes completely. Her family wants her to forget about the letter and her grandmother but she simply can’t.
When Amy loses her treasured book, it is found by a stranger who does his best to find her and ends up involved in Amy’s quest to unravel her family’s secrets.
The characters in this book, especially the main ones, are very interesting and well-written. Amy is a dreamer and very passionate so she can’t help but being drawn into a quest to unravel her family’s secrets.
I enjoyed the plot of the book, the romance and the adventure. I was pulled into the story right from the start and was very entertained. I really liked being able to unravel Amy’s family’s secrets along with her.
All in all, Chasing Paris is an interesting and well-written book with great characters and a good adventure. It is a book about family and choosing your own path.
The romance in it is very clean and even if the end wasn’t too surprising, I still enjoyed it.
Chasing Paris is a fun, entertaining and fast read, I think any contemporary romance reader will be able to enjoy.

Rating: Worth Your Time a (4 Stars)

Monday, October 29, 2012

Guest Post by Author Hannah Fielding

Guest Post by Author Hannah Fielding




Inspiration for my writing

The inspiration for my books comes from many sources – anything really that creates an emotion in me, which in turn stimulates my imagination. A deserted beach at the end of summer could make my mood nostalgic and affect my writing, so I would write about separation and loneliness. A stormy sea would incite me to have my characters quarrel. Listening to the sultry tunes of a saxophone would evoke the muted lights and the smoky atmosphere of a nightclub. The painting of a quaint little village with its up-and-down houses would create in my mind the setting for a special chapter in my novel where characters need a lively, bustling setting. A beautiful poem about sunset would conjure up an array of romantic scenes. A handsome young man in the street, at the airport or in a cafĂ© and my hero is born.

Burning Embers began as a vivid landscape in my mind. The seed of the idea was sown many years ago when, as a schoolgirl, I studied the works of Leconte de Lisle, a French Romantic poet of the 19th century (see http://www.hannahfielding.net/?cat=7). His poems are wonderfully descriptive and vivid – about wild animal, magnificent dawns and sunsets, exotic setting and colourful vistas. Then later on, I went on holiday to Kenya with my parents and I met our family friend Mr Chiumbo Wangai who often used to visit us. He was a great raconteur and told me extensively about his beautiful country, its traditions and its customs.

It was a brightly lit cruiser gliding on the Mediterranean by my window in France one night that set my heart racing and the scene for my opening chapter of Burning Embers was conceived. Fausto Papetti’s saxophone music created the ambiance for The Golden Fish, Rafe’s nightclub; Leconte de Lisle’s wonderful descriptive poems helped me dream up the romantic sunsets and paint the animals and the breathtaking scenery of Kenya in the novel.

Once a book starts taking form in my mind, it’s consuming. It is like a door opens in my head and ideas come thick and fast. When I am starting to craft my plot I get very worried about losing an idea, and that is one of the reasons why I keep a notebook next to my bed with a torch (so not to awake my husband). Ideas come to me in the most peculiar places. The last two paragraphs of Burning Embers came to me one evening while I was having my bath. I had to get out immediately (even though I had only just got in) to write down my thoughts, in case they flew away.

I try to exert some discipline, or my mind can get lost in the imagery world it conjures. I do so by writing down everything I think of, and then when the idea flow lessens, I begin to research – reading books, watching films, listening to music and visiting settings for the book. While I am researching other ideas for the plot, my characters, the scenes flow into my mind. When I feel I have gathered enough information to create my novel, I write a very detailed plan and do my best to press pause on any new ideas pouring into my mind.

Rarely do I find myself stuck for inspiration, I think because I surround myself with sources of inspiration – novels, music, paintings, friends and family. Usually, if my mind is quiet, I seek out a place where the scenery is very romantic. My Pinterest boards at http://pinterest.com/hannahfielding/my-writing-places/ and http://pinterest.com/hannahfielding/settings-that-inspire-my-writing/ help too – a quick glance and I’m straight into the settings that inspire me and able to discover deep within that vein of romance that infuses my writing.

For me, there is no spirit-like muse who visits me and sprinkles ideas upon me like fairy dust. One of my favourite quotes is by English poet  Sir Philip Sidney: “Biting my truant pen, beating myself for spite: “Fool!” said my muse to me, “look in thy heart, and write.” I believe that if you are patient and open, if you sit and drift and believe in inspiration, it will come to you, it must come to you.



Thank you, Hannah!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Interview with Andi Katsina

Interview with Andi Katsina



1 - Have you always wanted to be a writer? If not, when did you really you wanted to write?
In my case Carla, it’s not so much whether I’ve always wanted to be a writer, I was a writer, aged nine years onwards, I used to write plays, did this into my teenage years, but then going to college, working in accountancy etc, took my attention. It’s wasn’t until a decade ago that I picked up my pen again, since then I haven’t looked back, each time finishing a book I immediately start on another one. It might be because I so enjoyed writing as a child that it now comes very naturally to me.


2 - What inspired you to write Rick & Wylie's Fantastical, Magical Adventures?
A two-month stay on the Island of Kaua’i, Hawaii, gave me everything I needed to better understand some of the Hawaiian legends. With a polytheistic belief system, there was lots of material to work with, and what better place to formulate a fantastical story… somewhere of great beauty and mystery. I imagined a mystical forest deep inside the island, almost big as the island above, and along with some Tibetan myths, unleashed the legends; a most amazing, magical world was born.


3 - What was the biggest challenge you face when writing?
I can honestly say I don’t face any challenges when writing. I mentioned being a writer in my early years, it’s a thing I’ve always loved to do, and along with a great imagination, a quality I share with a great many of my readers, there’s always something rather good to write about. There is the odd time when a couple of days break is needed, usually when working on an exceedingly complicated scene. But other than that, though long hours and arduous, thankfully it’s all plane sailing.


4 - Can you name a few of your favorite authors and books?
Because there are so many to choose from, let me mention some of the favourite books from my childhood;; The Call of the Wild and White Fang by Jack London;; Fluke by James Herbert ;; Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach ;; Animal Farm by George Orwell ;; The Lord of the Rings & The Hobbit by J. R.R. Tolkien ;; The Weirdstone of Brisingamen, The Moon of Gomrath & The Owl Service by Alan Garner ;; The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling ;; and many, many more….


5 - Is there anything else you would like your readers to know about you and your books?
Thanks for the opportunity to get the word out Carla. I’m a dedicated writer, covering primarily fantasy, and to a lesser degree, science fiction genre. It’s such a pleasure to be able to offer my readers a wonderful, fantastic world where they can be thoroughly entertained, and also exercise their own limitless imaginations. I’m currently working on publicising my book, Rick & Wylie’s Fantastical, Magical Adventures book 1 [Journey to the Kingdom]. It's an epic fantasy adventure of trilogy length. It's already been pegged to knock Harry Potter off the shelves (let's see : ) and in California there has been talk about making a movie based on the book, very cool. It's currently being translated in Japan. Book 2 is due to be released late Spring 2013.




~~~~~~~~~~~

ABOUT ME
Hello my friends

I'm English, of rich Irish, African descent. Born in the sound of bow bells, an orphan, I grew up in Manchester, England. Quite a bit more than forty, I‘m a vegan, though occasionally lapse into vegetarianism.

Throughout my school years I was a champion athlete and swimmer, going on to become an athletics coach, swimming teacher and youth leader. After which time I was trained as a Chartered Accountant. Interrupting my training, I branched out, working freelance as a troubleshooter in the field of accountancy. Six years of adding and subtracting, was followed by two years of trading as an international commodities broker. This led me to the sedentary position of ‘trader in antique, oriental carpets’. It was at this juncture that I became completely inspired to become a writer.

As a ‘school kid’ I very much enjoyed writing plays in English, Latin and French. Fortunately for me, writing came naturally. I so, so like writing stories that give people, especially young people, and people young at heart, the chance to exercise their own imagination.

I love taking my readers on fantastic journeys. The enjoyment and taste of adventure my stories give to my readers, warms me greatly.

Best wishes from Andi Katsina


BOOK DETAILS : :

TITLE:  Rick & Wylie's Fantastical, Magical Adventures book 1 [Journey to the Kingdom]
PUB DATE: June 2012
RELEASE DATE: 1st September 2012
PUB: KatsInc. UK
GENRE: Fantasy Adventure
NUMBER OF PAGES: 550  ; words ; 173,477
ISBN: 978-0955579523
PUBLISHER HUB www.theindieoracle.com
AUTHOR: And Katsina (And, short for Andi. Andi, short for Andrea :)


Personal contact

Friday, October 26, 2012

Cover Reveal - Sweet Peril by Wendy Higgins

Cover Reveal - Sweet Peril by Wendy Higgins 



Summary:
Anna Whitt, daughter of a guardian angel and a demon, promised herself she’d never do the work of her father—polluting souls. She’d been naive to make such a claim. She’d been naive about a lot of things. Haunted by demon whisperers, Anna does whatever she can to survive, even if it means embracing her dark side and earning an unwanted reputation as her school’s party girl. Her life has never looked more bleak. And all the while there’s Kaidan Rowe, son of the Duke of Lust, plaguing her heart and mind.

When an unexpected lost message from the angels surfaces, Anna finds herself traveling the globe with Kopano, son of Wrath, in an attempt to gain support of fellow Nephilim and give them hope for the first time. It soon becomes clear that whatever freedoms Anna and the rest of the Neph are hoping to win will not be gained without a fight. Until then, Anna and Kaidan must put aside the issues between them, overcome the steamiest of temptations yet, and face the ultimate question: is loving someone worth risking their life?


Book 3 of The Sweet Trilogy, Sweet Reckoning, is slated for spring/summer 2014.

Author Bio:
Wendy Higgins was born in Alaska, grew up an Army brat, and lived all over the United States before settling in the Washington, DC area. She attended George Mason University for her undergrad degree in creative writing, and Radford University for her masters in curriculum and instruction. Wendy taught 9th and 12th grade English in a rural school before becoming a mother and author. She now lives in Northern Virginia with her husband, daughter, and son. Sweet Peril is her second novel.


Links:
Wendy Higgins on Twitter: https://twitter.com/Wendy_Higgins
Character Kaidan Rowe on Twitter: https://twitter.com/KaidanRowe