Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Buddy Talk (I Think I'm Ranting): Review Policy & Requests (+ Tips for Authors)

Tuesday, September 30, 2014
Buddy Talk!

Topic: Review Policy +  Requests



Hello book buddies. Today, I'll talk about an important matter, well, at least to me. Today's topic is review policy + requests. 

The topic has been bothering for a long time now. If you are blogging about books, it's expected that author/publishers/publicists or whatever, will send you review requests, right? I myself has been receiving a lot of review requests and I am thankful for that. What's bothering me is 'some' people who are sending me request does not read my review policy, first. I know I have signed up for other websites (i.e TweetYourBooks, The Indie View, and Book Bloggers List) to be able to help authors by reading and reviewing their book, but can you at least take a minute and look at my review policy? It won't take you a long time, promise. Here's a link, if you want to view it.

What's so important about review policies? You'll get to know what kind of books the blogger likes and does not like. You will also know some other things, like where they are currently based, where they would post their reviews aside from their blog, and lots of things more. It just frustrates me sometimes. It has been clearly stated on the review policy that I won't review memoir books and yet you still send me requests about that book? It just shows you did not take time to at least read a bit of my review policy.

I think this post doesn't make sense at all but at least I voiced out my opinions about things. I don't even know how to end this post. Hmm, I'll just give out tips to authors then.

(Disclaimer: These tips are based on my experience, I am not saying this would apply to all bloggers. Just always remember tip number one, though.)

TIP 1. Read the review policy.

TIP 2. Always know what kind of books a specific blogger (the one you emailed about a review request, obviously) likes and does not like to review.

TIP 3. Always take note about where the blogger is based (i.e USA, UK, or etc.) and what kind of review format(s) he/she will accept. Some bloggers does not accept eBooks while some would. It just takes a right blogger, you know.

TIP 4. Do NOT force the blogger to review your book. If he/she does not like to review it then stop sending out review requests. There's a lot of bloggers around the blogosphere, just take your time to find the right one.

TIP 5. If the blogger takes a long time to review your book; ask her why and let her explain. Bloggers are not robots, you know. We also have life outside the blogosphere. Some bloggers still go to school, some bloggers work, some are parents (taking care of their family), and some are just busy with their lives, in general.

That's all for today's topic. I hope (at least) you found this helpful. Till next time!(Leave your thoughts below!)

Monday, September 29, 2014

Review: Delusional by Scott Spotson

Monday, September 29, 2014
Title: Delusional
Author: 
Publication: September 8th 2013 (Self-published)
Format: Paperback (for review), 342 pages
Genres: Suspense, Mystery/Thriller, Fantasy, Romance
Source: Review copy sent by the author. (Thank you!)

Synopsis: 

When rising marketing executive Patricia Fowler falls for Paul Blast, a married co-worker, she tries to put her life into perspective—a task that becomes increasingly difficult when she starts having eerie hallucinations. Patricia’s dreams of a happily ever after turn into one nightmare after another as she battles threats that go beyond her imagination.

Is her new love behind the torment? After all, his former girlfriend ended up in an asylum. Or could Paul’s wife be more than a bored, spoiled, rich girl?


Meanwhile, the FBI is trying to track down a thief who magically appears and disappears, taking priceless gems and artwork with her.

“Delusional” is a fast-paced thriller that blurs the lines of reality and fantasy, leading to an explosive climax where what you see isn’t necessarily what you’re going to get!

Review:

GENERAL:
This book is a combination of psychological thriller and action thriller. There's also a hint of romance thriller, if you know what I mean. (And yes, there's a lot of different types of thrillers, they're called sub-genres.) While I was reading this book, it makes my heart beat so fast like I was playing the role of the protagonist and it kept on the edge of my seat. Every chapter offers something and it is really thrilling, in my opinion. I couldn't expect what would happen next and that's a great thing because it made me say things like;"Oh my goodness. Tell me that it did not happen." "Oh no. JUST. NO."

CHARACTER(S):
The characters are very much flawed and I love them all even though one was kind of evil (I wouldn't tell you who since that's what you need to find out!). Of all the characters, my favorite would be Jocelyn (AKA Joss), Patricia's (the protagonist) best friend. I liked her because she proved herself as a really trustworthy friend and she never left Patricia's side even though at some point she doubted Patricia's delusions. As for Patricia, I liked her. She's very independent and she's the kind of woman who looks fragile on the outside but then she'll surprise you with her strong personality. The other characters, Paul, Wendy, and Samantha are very much important in the story too. They all played an interesting role, actually.

PLOT AND WRITING STYLE:
The plot of this book was so amazing. There are two different plots in this book and they will eventually collide as the story progresses, which is so awesome! I couldn't explain how I really feel. It's just so amazing. It was really impressive. As for the writing style, it's also great! This is actually the second book I have read by Scott Spotson so I'm pretty much used to his writing style already. HIs writing style is unique and very articulate. It's very much easy to understand, well, at least in my opinion. THE PLOT AND THE WRITING STYLE IS JUST AS IMPRESSIVE AS THE CHARACTERS.


FINAL VERDICT:
I would totally recommend this book to those people who loves to read mysterious thriller books (that will make your brain go crazy) with a hint of romance. I will totally consider this book as one of the best books I have read this year! Very impressive. Y'all should try reading it because it's amazing and I said so.
 
Rating:
 
★★★★

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Stacking the Shelves #3

Saturday, September 20, 2014
Stacking The Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga’s Reviews.
The last few weeks has been very amazing! Scroll down to see the books I've obtained! :)

FREE ON KINDLE:


Storm by Brigid Kemmerer
White Hart by Sarah Dalton

 Jordyn by Tiffany King
Amazon || Goodreads

WON:

Fragile Line by Brooklyn Skye
 The Fashion Coloring Book by Carol Chu and Lulu Chang
Amazon || Goodreads

Shoes, Shoes, Shoes: A Delightful Book of Imaginary Footwear for Coloring, Decorating, and Dreaming by Carol Chu
Amazon
|| Goodreads

Odd Thomas by Dean Koontz

NETGALLEY (FOR REVIEW):


Rebel Wing by Tracy Banghart
Amazon || Goodreads

Love's Fortune by Laura Frantz
Amazon || Goodreads

Ennara and the Fallen Druid by Angela Hyron
Amazon || Goodreads

Every Ugly World by Aimee L. Salter
Amazon || Goodreads



Thanks to Peggy Martinez, Tricia's Bookshelf, Alloy Entertainment, Revell, Patchwork Press, and HMH Kids! That's all the books I got for the past few weeks and I'm really excited to read them all!

What books did you recently obtained? Leave a comment below!

Review: Imitation by Heather Hildenbrand

 IMITATION (Clone Chronicles #1)
by


Young Adult- Science Fiction, Dystopia
Published July 29th 2014 by Alloy Entertainment
eBook provided by Mark My Words Book Publicity
Synopsis: 
Everyone is exactly like me. There is no one like me.

Ven wrestles with these contradicting truths every day. A clone of wealthy eighteen-year-old Raven Rogen, Ven knows everything about the girl she was created to serve: the clothes she wears, the boys she loves, the friends she loves to hate. Yet she’s never met the Authentic Raven face-to-face.

Imitations like Ven only get to leave the lab when they’re needed—to replace a dead Authentic, donate an organ, or complete a specific mission. And Raven has never needed Ven . . . until now.

When there is an attack on Raven’s life, Ven is thrust into the real world, posing as Raven to draw out the people who tried to harm her. But as Ven dives deeper into Raven’s world, she begins to question everything she was ever told. She exists for Raven, but is she prepared to sacrifice herself for a girl she’s never met?

GENERAL:
Imitation reminds me of Starters by Lissa Price, which I loved also. I found them similar in some ways except that in Imitation, there's a place full of Imitations and if something happens to their Authentic in the real world (where real humans live), the Imitations get to live the life of their Authentic, if ordered by the big boss. While in Starters, the older people gets to rent the bodies of the young ones. Trust me, both books are amazing and really worth reading!

I love that this book is filled with action, too. The revelations were shocking and I kind of teared up a bit at some point. I just got carried away with Lincoln and Ven.

CHARACTER(S):
The main character, Ven, is a Imitation of Raven Rogen. Raven is a daughter of a very rich man and she's like a spoiled brat. Ven was summoned by Raven's father to do a mission regarding his daughter. 'Imitations are only needed when they need to replace a dead Authentic, donate an organ, or complete a mission.' An Imitation is not a robot, though. They're like a duplicate of a specific person.

There's also a bit of romance, which I found cute. Lincoln, Ven's love interest, is her personal bodyguard. He's really protective towards Ven and as the story progresses, they're both falling in love with each other. The romance didn't overpower the story which is amazing. They're just so cute for each other. Really swoon-worthy!

PLOT AND WRITING STYLE:
The plot is amazing. The world-building is too. I am really impressed with the plot and with the writing style, too. I admire Hildenbrand's writing style, it's very articulate.

FINAL VERDICT:
I kind of wanted more but it's still great. Everything about this book is very amazing. I would totally re-read this book!

Rating:
4.5/5 stars 
★★★★ ½

This product or book may have been distributed for review, this in no way affects my opinions or reviews.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday: Forbidden by Kimberley Griffiths Little (plusSpecial Announcement!)

Wednesday, September 10, 2014
Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event that is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's WoW pick is:


Publication: November 4th 2014 (HarperCollins)
Genre(s): Young Adult- Fantasy, Romance, Historical Fiction

Add the book on Goodreads!


Synopsis: 
In the unforgiving Mesopotamian desert where Jayden’s tribe lives, betrothal celebrations abound, and tonight it is Jayden’s turn to be honored. But while this union with Horeb, the son of her tribe’s leader, will bring a life of riches and restore her family’s position within the tribe, it will come at the price of Jayden’s heart.

Then a shadowy boy from the Southern Lands appears. Handsome and mysterious, Kadesh fills Jayden’s heart with a passion she never knew possible. But with Horeb’s increasingly violent threats haunting Jayden’s every move, she knows she must find a way to escape—or die trying.

With a forbidden romance blossoming in her heart and her family’s survival on the line, Jayden must embark on a deadly journey to save the ones she loves—and find a true love for herself.

Set against the brilliant backdrop of the sprawling desert, the story of Jayden and Kadesh will leave readers absolutely breathless as they defy the odds and risk it all to be together.

Why Forbidden?

I totally can't wait for this *pretty* book to be release this November! It's one of my anticipated reads this year. I actually have an eARC of this and I'm currently reading it! I really want to have the physical copy though, because it's much prettier in physical form! Plus the synopsis really caught my attention even though I don't read a lot of historical fiction novels. The cover looks so pretty, right?! I'll totally be saving for this one! *happy dance*


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SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT!

I'm doing a book club for this book and I'm still waiting for the book club cards to arrive. If you want to join the book club, please do let me know through commenting on this blog post, or emailing and tweeting me! Anyone can join, you don't have to be a blogger or anything.

My contact links will be found on my contact page, here. If you want to join, send me an email and please include the following details needed in your email: 

Goodreads account (if you have one), blog site (optional), Facebook and/or Twitter account!

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 What book(s) are you eagerly anticipating on? Let me know in the comments!

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Review: Life II by Scott Spotson

Saturday, September 6, 2014
Title: Life II
Author:
Publication: February 5th 2013 (Self-published)
Format: Paperback (for review), 656 pages
Genres: (Adult/YA) Science Fiction, Time Travel
Source: Review copy sent by the author. (Thank you!)

Synopsis: 

Upon discovering a 1958 book titled "Account of Time Travel on Earth Using Wave Theory," 42-year-old Max Thorning's life is thrown into chaos. Seeking answers to the book's cryptic clues, he discovers Dr. Time, a seemingly benign alien who has control of the Time Weaver, a remarkable device that can command any scene from the Earth's past. Dr. Time offers him a choice to go back into Time, to any point in his lifespan that he can vividly recall. The catch: he can only bring his memories, and can only live the future one day at a time. Follow Max's dilemma as he goes back to his 16-year-old self and tries to forge his destiny into a new one called Life II.

Review:

GENERAL:
At first, I didn't know this book is about time traveling and then when I found out it was about time traveling, I was so happy because books that involves time traveling is one of my favorite things! When I started reading the book, I got hooked to Max's story and I can't stop myself from reading. It didn't disappoint me.
 
One of the things that made me love this book is; how Max valued his family more than anything else. While reading the story in a third person perspective, you can really see that Max loves his family more than himself. Every chapter has something to offer and trust me, I didn't get bored even though there were some tiny details that were unnecessary. I also love how the story progresses.

CHARACTER(S):
Max is a great character, I admired him so much. I consider Max as a selfless person and he was a truly great son, friend, father, and husband. He is a really persistent person too. He didn't stop from achieving what he really wants.

Everyone in this book is flawed, which is really awesome. Of all the characters, my favorite would be Max's best friend, Garfield. Garfield is dumb sometimes but he's the kind of friend who will stay beside you through thick and thin. I'd really love Garfield to be my best friend too.

PLOT AND WRITING STYLE:
The plot of this book really impressed me. It was a great idea and I love how Scott Spotson came up with this idea. As for the writing style, it was great too. I love the way he wrote this book. Everything was perfectly understandable.

FINAL VERDICT:
I did enjoy reading this book and I would totally recommend this book to those people who loves to read books that involves time traveling. Totally worth reading!

Rating:
 
★★★★

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

eARC Review: The Gateway Through Which They Came by Heather Marie(Interview + Giveaway!)

Tuesday, September 2, 2014
Title: The Gateway Through Which They Came (The Gateway, #1)
Author: 
Publication: August 25th 2014 by Curiosity Quills Press
Format: eARC
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal
Source: Publisher (Thanks CQP!)
Buy the Book: Amazon || Book Depository || B&N
Synopsis: 
To seventeen-year-old Aiden Ortiz, letting the dead walk through his body to reach the other side comes with the territory. Being a Gateway isn’t an easy job, but someone’s gotta send Bleeders where they belong. Heaven. Salvation. Call it whatever you want. Dead is dead. But when his search for Koren Banks––the girl who went mysteriously missing seven months ago––leaves him with more questions than answers, he finds himself involved in something far more sinister and beyond his control. 

With the threat of the Dark Priest's resurrection, and his plan to summon his demon brothers from hell, Aiden is left to discover his identity before the Dark Priest's curse infecting his blood consumes him, and before the world as he knows it succumbs to the darkness of hell on earth.

Add this book on Goodreads!
 Read the first chapter for THE GATEWAY THROUGH WHICH THEY CAME here: http://heathermarieya.com/first-chapt...

Watch the trailer along with behind-the-scenes footage over on Vicious Vanity FX: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q2904...
 
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 Please give Heather Marie, the author of The Gateway Through Which They Came,  a warm welcome on my blog! Thanks Heather for letting me interview you!

1. How long did it take you to write The Gateway Through Which They Came?

Since I did it during NaNoWriMo, I spent all of November 2012 writing Gateway. After that I don't even know how many drafts it took. It was A LOT. So it wasn't finally complete and ready to be published until February of this year, I do believe. It was a long journey with many changes, but they were so worth it. 

2. What's the best thing about writing The Gateway Through Which They Came?

Speaking from Aiden's POV. I truly love his character so much. He has a lot of heart and good intentions, but things keep throwing him for a loop, and I love to see how he overcomes those obstacles (even if I do make them incredibly difficult for him). 

3. In your next book, The Gateway of Light and Darkness, what can you offer us? (More action? More thrilling events?)

Definitely more action, but I can also say that there are so many twists & turns, you're not gonna know what hit ya! Gateway 2 was a bit more challenging to write because I didn't know exactly where I was going with it. But once things came together, I was practically giggling by the end. I freakin' love book two. LOVE. 

4. How does it feel now that you've published your book?

Fan-freakin'-tastic! Oh my gosh. It seriously didn't hit me until my launch party on August 30th. The crowd was insane, the line was never-ending (not that I'm complaining), and B&N called it one of their most successful signings ever. That was definitely the most incredible experience of my life. I never want this to end. So if there's ever a moment where you finally get slammed into the reality of 'I'm a published author' that would be it. 

5. What is your message to those people who are dreaming to be an author?

Never stop writing. Even on those days when you completely break down and swear it's time to give up, don't. I can't tell you how many times I lost it because I thought it was never going to happen. Seven or eight manuscripts later, it did. Be patient with yourself and your art. You got this.
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Review:

The Gateway Through Which They Came is a debut novel from Heather Marie. This novel is indeed a masterpiece and Heather Marie is definitely a great writer. I can't wait to read her upcoming books.

The book was introduced as a Young Adult Supernatural and I love how the book really focused on the supernatural aspect. (I don't like it when a book is introduced as a supernatural blah, blah then it turned out it has more romance aspect than the supernatural aspect. JUST NO.) Though this book has a little bit of romance, I didn't found it annoying or too much. The romance was really sincere and heartwarming and trust me, the book wasn't full of romance so don't worry! It was filled with action and mystery! The other thing I love, aside from the action and mystery, is the true friendship between Aiden (the main character) and his best friends, Evan and Trevor. The story was told in a guy's perspective which is Aiden and I love reading his perspective. I adore female authors who can write a story beautifully in a guy's perspective. In my experience, I find it sooo hard to write things from a guy's mind but this book is different and well-written.

Aiden Ortiz is a Gateway, the one who sends Bleeders (AKA dead people) to the other side. At first, Aiden thought it was just a simple task but then as he discovers more about his identity, things got messier and harder. He's a teenager who is misunderstood by many people because of his gift. Some people may think it's great to have a gift but little did they know, that gift can may also be the reason for his life to end. Every characters came to life. Even though they're flawed, they seemed genuine. The mystery in this book kept me fascinated through every chapter. Every chapter is intense and thrilling! 

I enjoyed this book a lot and the whole concept fascinated me plus it's amazing, that's why I really love it. From the characters, plot, and writing style, I was really impressed! Everything about this book is amazing. This book is indeed fantastic, thrilling, and it will keep you reading until you won't realized it's already 12 midnight. 
 
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GIVEAWAY!

RULES:
1. You must be 13 or older, must have your parents permission.
2. Open to US residents only.
3. Ends on September 20th.

There will be two winners. Each winner will receive two bookmarks and two pins. If you have any questions, tweet me (@klfontalva) or email me! :)