Monday, April 21, 2014

Book Review: DIVIDE



From senior class president to dejected social outcast, with just the flick of a match.

After accusations of torching her ex-boyfriend’s home are followed by the mysterious poisoning of her ex-best friend, seventeen-year-old Holland Briggs assumes her life is over. And it is. But not in the way she thinks.

As Holland learns the truth about her cursed fate—that she is descended from the Beast most have only ever heard of in fairytales—she unites with an unlikely ally, good-looking newcomer Mick Stevenson. 

Mick knows more about Holland’s twisted history than she does, and enlightening as it is to learn about, his suggestion for a cure is unsettling at best. Holland must fall in love with Mick in order to break the spell, and save their future generations from repeating her cursed fate. Having sworn off love after the betrayals of her ex-boyfriend and ex-best friend, this may be difficult to accomplish. 

Complicating things further for Holland and Mick, time runs out, and Holland’s change begins way before schedule. With Holland quickly morphing into a dangerous mythical creature, Mick struggles to save her.

Should they fail, Holland will be lost to the beast inside her forever.




MY REVIEW

This book is the perfect fairytale re-telling. I knew it was a gender flip YA re-telling of Beauty and The Beast, but it felt like so much more.
Holland is an average girl, and I think that's what I liked most about her.
An average girl going through a life changing, crazy PHYSICAL change. Then there's the hottie here to rescue here, and it seems like she almost has a chance.
This story kept me guessing, all the time. I had no idea where Jessa was taking this tale and it kept me flipping to the next page.
And then there’s the mysterious changes happing to Holland, graying eyes, sleepwalking, phasing in and out of reality, and the rage.
All consuming rage.
This isn’t just a gender flip, it’s a meshing of Beauty and The Beast and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde where the girl is our dangerous beast and it’s the boy who will need to convince this double sided beauty to fall in love.
Does he?
Guess you’ll need to read it and find out.



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Thursday, April 17, 2014

Book Blitz: DIVIDE!!!

DIVIDE IS LIVE! DIVIDE IS LIVE!



Today we're celebrating the release of DIVIDE--Jessa Russo's upper young adult fantasy fairytale redux of Beauty and the Beast (what a mouthful!)! 

Please join us all day (4/17) on Facebook for the Release Day CELEBRATION!!!
Author visits, surprises, and giveaways you don't want to miss!
Click HERE to RSVP

Amazon | Kobo | Barnes&Noble | Goodreads

From senior class president to dejected social outcast, with just the flick of a match.

After accusations of torching her ex-boyfriend’s home are followed by the mysterious poisoning of her ex-best friend, seventeen-year-old Holland Briggs assumes her life is over. And it is. But not in the way she thinks.

As Holland learns the truth about her cursed fate—that she is descended from the Beast most have only ever heard of in fairytales—she unites with an unlikely ally, good-looking newcomer Mick Stevenson. 

Mick knows more about Holland’s twisted history than she does, and enlightening as it is to learn about, his suggestion for a cure is unsettling at best. Holland must fall in love with Mick in order to break the spell, and save their future generations from repeating her cursed fate. Having sworn off love after the betrayals of her ex-boyfriend and ex-best friend, this may be difficult to accomplish. 

Complicating things further for Holland and Mick, time runs out, and Holland’s change begins way before schedule. With Holland quickly morphing into a dangerous mythical creature, Mick struggles to save her.

Should they fail, Holland will be lost to the beast inside her forever.

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Friday, April 11, 2014

Broken Forest Excerpts

Follow my blog with Bloglovin To give you a few ideas for the contest, I've posted some Broken Forest excerpts below. Be inspired. CREATE. Have fun.

Remember, details of the fanart contest can be found on the fanart page.




Derrick and I headed towards the crowded market. The air smelled of fresh bread, reminding me of home. Houses made of green and orange mosaics with curved archways and round windows loomed on each side of the cobblestone street. Roofs resembling dragon scales created a unique architecture.
While we walked, I rolled one of my marbles in my hand. I didn’t trust anyone and this place seemed so otherworldly. Every townsfolk seemed either strong and tall, or lithe and beautiful. Women dressed in bright colors, filled the street. I’d never seen so much color in one place.
 
In my silver shoes, I stepped on the sparkling marble and walked through the parted guests. At the end of the line, I saw Lucino. My heart fluttered. His pants and shirt were the color of midnight, and a long scarlet cape draped his back. He wore an ivory mask that covered almost every part of his face, except his mouth, eyes and left cheek. His sapphire eyes blazed from the two holes. No man could ever look as regal, as daring.



 The wagons surrounded the site in a semi-circle. Sweat pooled in my palms. I had to take out the guards closest to that entrance. If I failed, so did the mission.

Get a grip.

I clenched the arrow in my right hand. Brushfire shifted nervously, sensing my fear. I rubbed her neck. I felt safer with her. She’d been with me since Jimri’s death. At night when the nightmares taunted me, I’d sneak out, riding until dawn forced us home. I’d rescued her from the burning woods, she’d rescued me from despair—Today, I prayed both of us would make it out alive.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Fan Art Contest is LIVE!

Follow my blog with Bloglovin


The fan art contest is officially open! I re-posted the details below.


Create your best fan art of BROKEN FOREST. It can be anything! If you can paint, sketch, scrapbook, go for it. If digital media is your thing, digitize it.
Once your masterpiece is complete post it anywhere on my social media links: Twitter / Tumblr / Website  / Pinterest /Facebook / Instagram
I’ll have a Pinterest board set up for the contest where I’ll post all the submissions, and yes, you can submit more than one piece. Submission window opens April 1st and closes May 1st. You have 30 days!
What do you win?
The winner will get a $25 Amazon GC, a sneak peek at the 1st chapter of Book#2, and a secret prize which will be announced at the end of the contest.
And everyone who enters will get some swag from me.

If you haven't had a chance to read BROKEN FOREST yet, no worries! You can re-create the book cover or draw/paint/digitize a picture based off the blurb (see below). 

Hopeless he’ll never be more than the boy who didn’t save his brother, 17-year-old Avikar accepts his life as the family stable boy, trying to forget the past. But when his sister, Jeslyn, is kidnapped, the thought of losing another sibling catapults him on a desperate quest. With his best friend by his side, and using the tracking skills he learned from his father, he discovers Jeslyn has been taken, kidnapped by one Lucino, the young lord of Daath, a mystical place thought only to exist in fables.
And Lucino has plans for Jeslyn.
His shape-shifting brethren feed off the auras of humans, and Jeslyn’s golden hue is exactly what Lucino needs to increase his power. The longer it takes Avikar to reach her, the more entranced she becomes with Lucino’s world, and the harder it                                                                 will be for Avikar to set her free.
                                                           He failed his family once. He won’t fail again.

The PINTEREST BOARD IS UP! See it HERE

Monday, March 31, 2014

Monday Inspiration: Quote



“The only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be.”

–Ralph Waldo Emerson

Thursday, March 27, 2014

BROKEN FOREST Fan Art Contest



I love fan art, and to celebrate BROKEN FOREST's book birthday, I decided to hold an epic contest.

Here's what you need to do:

Create your best fan art of BROKEN FOREST. It can be anything! If you can paint, sketch, scrapbook, go for it. If digital media is your thing, digitize it.

Once your masterpiece is complete post it anywhere on my social media links:Twitter / Tumblr / Website  / Pinterest /Facebook / Instagram

I'll have a Pinterest board set up for the contest where I'll post all the submissions, and yes, you can submit more than one piece. Submission window opens April 1st and closes May 1st. You have 30 days!

What do you win?

The winner will get a $25 Amazon GC, a sneak peek at the 1st chapter of Book#2, and a secret prize which will be announced at the end of the contest.

And everyone who enters will get some swag from me : )

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

KIYA 3 Blog Tour!

I'm super excited to be part of the KIYA 3 Blog Tour! I've read the entire trilogy and boy is it good! On my stop, I decided to go over each book and tell you what I thought.

First up, is the book that started it all!

When Naomi’s sisters are snatched up to be taken to be wives of the erratic Pharaoh, Akhenaten, she knows they won’t survive the palace, so she offers herself in their place. The fearsome Commander Horemheb sees her courage, and knows she is exactly what he is looking for… 

The Great Queen Nefertiti despises Naomi instantly, and strips her of her Hebrew lineage, including her name, which is changed to Kiya. Kiya allies herself with Horemheb, who pushes her to greatness and encourages her to make the Pharaoh fall in love with her. When Akhenaten declares Kiya will be the mother of his heir, Nefertiti, furious with jealousy, schemes to destroy Kiya. 

Kiya must play the deadly game carefully. She is in a silent battle of wills, and a struggle for who will one day inherit the crown. If she does bear an heir, she knows she will need to fight to protect him, as well as herself, from Nefertiti who is out for blood.


My Thoughts:

I've always been fascinated with Ancient Egypt. When I started reading KIYA, I was swept into this ancient world full of political intrigue and romance. In a sense, Kiya, reminds me a little of Ester. She makes the best of her situation by befriending the other wives and becoming a beacon of hope. She's loyal, fierce, and watches out for those she loves. I immediately fell in love with her.



Nefertiti has forced Naomi to flee Amarna with Malachi and the three children. But even under the protection of Naomi’s family in Thebes, Nefertiti still hunts her and Tut. Nefertiti sends assassins to kill them, and while Naomi fights to protect the children, Malachi fights to keep her safe. 

With three children in tow, one of which isn’t her own, she is labeled the harlot outcast wife of the pharaoh and is shunned. She isn’t safe among her own people, and flees from being stoned to death. Although her family protects her, she must find a way to survive. 

While Naomi struggles to keep herself and Tut alive, old adversaries return as Smenkhkare takes advantage of Akhenaten’s ailing health. Naomi must rely on Horemheb’s promise to protect Tut’s birthright, but her feelings for Malachi could cause more problems with Horemheb than she expects.


My thoughts

In book two Naomi, aka Kiya, has returned home with Malachi, the guard who has sworn his heart and sword to her.  The two struggle to build a life, while taking care of Akhenanten's children, and fleeing from Queen Nefertiti's assassins. It's not easy for Naomi to fit back into her old life. The villagers think ill of her, to the point of stoning! Not to mention there's tension between Malachi and Horemheb, even though Horemheb is protecting her. I think I read this book in two days, it was so good!

And last, the book that ends the trilogy!


Tut has grown into his position as Pharaoh, but he is a wild young man. Naomi fears for him, not only because of his recklessness, but because he has put his trust in Ay—the man determined to destroy Naomi—despite her and Horemheb advising against it. 

Meanwhile, death and slavery hang over Naomi and her family. With fear of the booming Hebrew numbers causing talk of enslaving them, conscription is reinstated and Naomi fears for the lives of her other children. Especially since Ay's children are now adults, and just as dangerous as their father. They threaten to take Itani, conspire against Tut, and push for power. 

But Tut is in trouble. While Ay's daughter draws Horemheb's attention, and Naomi deals with the struggles of her family, everyone's distraction could spell death for the young Pharaoh.



My thoughts

There's so much about this book that I loved, and a few things that left me wanting more. I didn't want to leave this world, but Hamstead gives us enough closure that we can. This  book focuses a lot on family, and love. Not just love, but GREAT LOVE. I definitely cried, twice. 

The entire trilogy is wonderful. The amount of detail that went into the culture of that day, both Hebrew and Egyptian, shows what a skilled writer Hamstead is. She's become one of my favorite authors and I can't wait for her next series.

I added the amazon buy links to each of the covers. Here's where else you can buy KIYA 3:

B&N and KOBO

I HIGHLY RECOMMEND this series.


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