Tuesday, April 28, 2015

RELEASE DAY BLITZ + GIVEAWAY: 'LIFE UNAWARE' by Cole Gibsen


Life Unaware
Release Date: 04/28/15
Entangled Teen

Book Summary:
Regan Flay has been talking about you. 

Regan Flay is on the cusp of achieving her control-freak mother's "plan" for high school success―cheerleading, student council, the Honor Society—until her life gets turned horribly, horribly upside down. Every bitchy text. Every bitchy email. Every lie, manipulation, and insult she's ever said have been printed out and taped to all the lockers in school. 

Now Regan has gone from popular princess to total pariah. 
The only person who even speaks to her is her former best friend's hot but socially miscreant brother, Nolan Letner. Nolan thinks he knows what Regan's going through, but whatnobody knows is that Regan isn't really Little Miss Perfect. In fact, she's barely holding it together under her mom's pressure. But the consequences of Regan's fall from grace are only just beginning. Once the chain reaction starts, no one will remain untouched... 

Especially Regan Flay.
About the Author
Cole Gibsen first realized she different when, in high school, she was still reading comic books while the other girls were reading fashion magazines.

It was her love of superheroes that first inspired her to pick up a pen. Her favorite things to write about are ordinary girls who find themselves in extraordinary situations.

Author Links:
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Friday, April 17, 2015

Promo Post: TRUE LOVE WAY by Mary Elizabeth

TRUELOVEWAY 23009679  
  SYNOPSIS 
Some days are brighter than others, but Penelope Finnel has been taught she can be invisible behind the colored lenses of her heart-shaped sunglasses. Her mind is her worst enemy, and simply waking up in the morning is risky. For a kid like her, staying in bed is easier, especially when the day has come to start school in a new town with new kids who don’t understand that the clouds are not the only reason everything is so gloomy. Dillon Decker is a typical boy from a typical small town who radiates light and happiness. Under the hovering glare from her father, Dillon leads Penelope around on his bicycle’s handlebars, hoping he is the cure to her madness. But when friend turns to lover, and lover turns to caretaker, how much can either of them tolerate before they’re swallowed whole? A story about moving trucks and rollerblades, candy for smiles, and notes across lawns. First loves and the struggle to keep it sane. The true love way.

EXCERPT 
My dad stares at me like I just told him there’s a dental theories’ seminar for nerd dentists like himself he wasn’t invited to. No, better than that. His face reminds me of that time he realized a grown man had stolen his lucky molar spreader from his office after an extraction and was forced to buy a new, unlucky one. 
"Are you sure you’re ready?" Dad clears his throat, shutting the door so that Mom doesn’t hear our conversation. Sex is natural, it happens, and it’s a part of becoming a man. Dad told me all of this when he was naming parts on a plastic uterus, and now he wants to know if I’m ready. I wasn’t ready for hair to grow on my balls, but that happened. I wonder how many M&M’s Coach Finnel will give me if I make Pen smile during sex. Those should count as double.
 "Considering Penelope’s condition, Dillon, committing to a physical relationship with her isn’t very wise." 
"She’s sad sometimes," I say, swallowing my anger. "Not dying." Pulling the rolling chair out from behind his desk, he sits and takes his glasses off. Dad pinches the bridge of his nose before continuing. 
"There’s more to it than that, Dillon. Especially in children, and that’s exactly what the two of you are." 

Excerpt Two:

We’re tangled limbs and naked skin, breathing heavily and touching curiously. My bare back stings under the summer sun, and her pale, undressed chest practically glows. A cage of stark white bone, red blood and muscle, and blue veins protect the fragile beating heart beneath. I brush my lips over the diamond-shaped collection of freckles at the base of her throat and push my knees up, opening hers around me. She’s tired-wild and lifeless-living. The dense wall of trees around us protects her from being seen, and the blanket over the grass keeps her comfortable. Far enough out into the woods, only the wildlife will hear her screams. She’s all that matters and safe with me. Sliding my hands up her thin stomach and over her round chest, my girl tilts her head back, and her brown eyes move under her translucent lids. Chapped lips part, and a sound so small escapes I don’t know if I heard it and question my own sanity. 
"Are you sure this is what you want?" I ask, unbuttoning my shorts. Penelope’s long lashes flutter, and she opens her eyes against sun rays so strong red blotches slowly appear on her outstretched arms. She has green blades of grass in her grip, holding on to Earth so she doesn’t fly away as I slowly push my fingers into her warmest spot. My girl circles her hips over my hand, and I shove deeper, like either one of us knows what this really means. Leaning over her small body, I kiss the length of Pen’s neck and pull her earlobe between my teeth. 
"We can stop whenever you want," I say, licking the single tear that bleeds from the side of her eye. 
"I don’t want to," insistence answers with a breathless voice. 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 11081018_833643076683207_787542825814050289_n
Mary Elizabeth is an up and coming author who finds words in chaos, writing stories about the skeletons hanging in your closets. Known as The Realist, Mary was born and raised in Southern California. She is a wife, mother of four beautiful children, and dog tamer to one enthusiastic Pit Bull and a prissy Chihuahua. She's a hairstylist by day but contemporary fiction, new adult author by night. Mary can often be found finger twirling her hair and chewing on a stick of licorice while writing and rewriting a sentence over and over until it's perfect. She discovered her talent for tale-telling accidentally, but literature is in her chokehold. And she's not letting go until every story is told. 
"The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure."--Jeremiah 17:9 

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Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Poem 8: Balance


I found this post on Instagram, and it explains perfectly about how I feel about my life right now.
Right now, I feel like I'm in the middle of a crossroads.
I'm trapped between doing what I want, and listening to so many people
Trying to tell me how to live,
What to major in, 
(even though I just graduated last May)
How to pursue my goals in life,
What to do,
How to live,
How to be, 
Who to talk to.
And no one has asked what I want. 
What I'd like to do.
They have, but it feels like no one is listening,
And when I try to, the words just don't come out,
And then I'm left like the bumbling idiot girl who doesn't know what she wants.
I hate this feeling. 
But feeling this way has brought on a lot of thinking.
Thinking about myself, and where I am.
Thinking about my friends and how they are in their lives.
Thinking of my parents and my sister, and how they made it work for them.
Just thinking about a lot of things, but not really doing.
If you want something in life, you should do first, think later.
If it doesn't work out, then it doesn't work out,
And then try for Plan B. 
But you can't skip to Plan B if you haven't even given Plan A a shot yet.
So go on, get out, do what you want.
and don't care about what anyone else thinks, because it doesn't matter. 
You'll be doing what you love, and they'll be stuck wondering how you did it. 

Make your own rules and follow your own path 
And don't let anybody tell you how to live according to theirs. 

Release Day Blitz + Giveaway: INTERIM by S.J. Walden





~A lot can change in the space between devising a plan and carrying it out. That space is called the Interim.~


High school seniors Jeremy Stahl and Regan Walters aren’t friends. Not even close. He’s a picked-on, picked-apart loser outcast. She’s a cool kid running with the popular crowd. It’s unlikely they’d ever speak to one another. Too bad he’s madly in love with her. But what does it matter, anyway? He’s got no time for love. Only revenge.

Meticulously detailed in the pages of his battered red notebook is his master plan: April 14, 9:30 A.M., two guns, eighty rounds of ammo, backup knives, eleven victims. He’s finally ready to answer every single taunt, jeer, and flying fist—unwarranted abuse that’s spanned six years of his lonely life. He’s justified. He’s ready. But he never readied himself for her.

Regan finds his journal. She reads it, and when he discovers her intrusion, he has to switch tactics. She’s a liability now.

Better fix that.


(WARNING: This is a New Adult standalone that contains graphic language and violence, including gun violence. If school shootings are an especially sensitive subject for you, then I urge you to refrain from reading this book.)


Excerpt:

His heart plummeted when their eyes met that morning. And then the anger bubbled up in his chest almost immediately. The things she must know! He knew she read it. A girl would have read it. Fucking girls. It was written all over her guilty face, her deer-in-headlights eyes. Her body language. He saw the imperceptible tightening of his words against her chest—her biceps flexing as she secured his notebook to her body. Like she owned it. Like she owned him.

The hell you do, he thought.




Letter to the Reader:

Dear Reader,

Not many authors will discourage you from reading their work. After all, the goal of our stories is to grow our readership, not diminish it. I’m well aware of that, but when I first became inspired with Jeremy’s story, I knew I would have to go about promoting it in an entirely different way—something far removed from my past marketing campaigns. I knew I would have to hide the book, stamp disclaimers all over it, plant seeds of doubt in your minds, decline requests for advanced reviews—in essence, all the things an author SHOULD NOT do when marketing her book. That’s why it took me so long to write the damn thing—over a year of worrying, second-guessing, flip-flopping, arguing. Jeremy sat waiting patiently, and I stared back at him wondering just how much he would destroy my career.

Then I remembered that his story is exactly the type of controversial social issue I enjoy tackling. I knew I had to write it because I could. I could be sensitive to the subject matter without being PC. I could leave my political and moral opinions out of it. I could make it a human story, not a gun story. I could do all these things if I worked very hard—if I was diligent and faithful to my characters and their experiences. Once I realized these things, I stopped fretting and just started writing, careful to keep all the details private and sacred. That’s how writing should be: private and sacred.

Now Jeremy’s story is no longer private, but I hope you will find it sacred. I hope you will throw off your preconceptions and bury your social and political views, your moral judgments. It’s too easy to go into a story like this already angry, especially if you or someone you love has experienced gun violence. I urge you to think long and hard before starting Interim if you are especially sensitive to the topic of school shootings. There are extremely violent, descriptive scenes, and I do not wish for my book to be a trigger for you.

I am well aware of the social debate a book like this may provoke. I did not write it for debate. I did not write it to make a statement about guns, gun control, gun access, Constitutional rights, etc. I am not interested in comparing my story to the horrific school shootings that have taken place in the United States. I have no motive other than to tell a story about an abused boy who felt he deserved justice. What you take away from the novel is entirely up to you.

Love,
Summer



S. Walden used to teach English before making the best decision of her life by becoming a full-time writer. She lives in Georgia with her very supportive husband who prefers physics textbooks over fiction and has a difficult time understanding why her characters must have personality flaws. She is wary of small children, so she has a Westie instead. She is the USA Today bestselling author of Going Under. When she's not writing, she's thinking about it.

She loves her fans and loves to hear from them. Email her at swaldenauthor@hotmail.com and follow her twitter feed at @swaldenauthor.



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Sunday, April 12, 2015

Cover Reveal: STARDUST by Alexandra Richland

STARDUST (The Starlight Trilogy Book #3) 

Cover, Synopsis, and Release Date Reveal and Preorder Information





Release Date: Tuesday May 26, 2015

Available for Preorder from Amazon for a Special Price (links below)

STARDUST SYNOPSIS:


Following their Academy Award wins, the film careers of Elizabeth Sutton and Aidan Evans reach stratospheric heights. Now bona fide superstars, the Hollywood press and throngs of starstruck fans await them at every turn, and the pressure to maintain their luminary status for the benefit of Starlight Studios escalates.

Away from the spotlight, Beth and Aidan's forbidden romance intensifies. Passionate nights spent together in secret stoke their mutual desires, each experience more extraordinary than the last. 

Beth is thrilled with the breakthroughs in both her professional and personal lives, but perpetual feelings of guilt and self-doubt cripple Aidan's happiness. Slowly, the burdens brought on by the fame he neither courted nor craved unleash his inner torment, releasing the demons Beth's love and support helped him cage. 

Aidan must embark on a final journey to move on from his traumatic past once and for all, but the outcome is anything but certain. It leads him down an unexpectedly dark path, from an explosive showdown with studio head Luther Mertz, to a jarring revelation about his mother’s death that could hold the key to his salvation or exile him from everyone he loves forever. 

Stardust is the powerful conclusion to The Starlight Trilogy, a story of love and redemption set against the backdrop of the final years of Hollywood's Golden Age.



Available for Preorder from Amazon for a Special Price:


STARLIGHT (The Starlight Trilogy Book #1) 
Cover, Synopsis, and Exclusive Excerpt




STARLIGHT SYNOPSIS

October 1952 finds eighteen-year-old Marie Bates relocating from her rainy hometown in the Pacific Northwest to the sun-soaked streets of Los Angeles, California. Marie's plans for a teaching career take an unexpected turn when she's asked to film a screen test at Starlight Motion Picture Studios. 

Renamed Elizabeth Sutton by the studio heads, she lands her first role as an extra. On set, Beth spies Aidan Evans, a rebellious, twenty-three-year-old Method actor from New York. Aidan is branded as a stuck-up troublemaker by his famous Hollywood peers, but Beth suspects a tragic secret lurks behind his steely facade. 

As their careers hit the fast track and friendship evolves into romance, the expectations of Hollywood stardom threaten to shine a spotlight on Aidan's dark past before he can make peace with it. Beth must help Aidan confront the painful event that shattered his life and conquer a terrifying truth before it destroys him and their future together. 

Starlight is the first book in The Starlight Trilogy, a story of love and redemption set against the backdrop of the final years of Hollywood's Golden Age. 

Starlight is the first book in The Starlight Trilogy, a story of love and redemption set against the backdrop of the final years of Hollywood's Golden Age. 

STARLIGHT EXCERPT:


Aidan cleared his throat. “Beth?”

“Yes, Aidan?” 

“May I place a kiss on your cheek?” 

“A kiss?” Heat fanned across her face. “Why, yes. I’d . . . I’d like that very much.”

“I’m sorry I’m asking you in my car—” 

“I don’t mind. Honest.” Her blush deepened.

Aidan draped his arm over her seat and moved closer . . . closer. Then, finally, his lips were near hers. “I had a wonderful time with you today.”

“Me, too.” Beth closed her eyes. 

Aidan pressed his lips to her cheek, followed by her jaw, stirring something intensely pleasurable deep inside her, which she’d never felt previously. It drilled into her very being, transforming her longing for him into something so fierce she thought she’d cease living if he didn’t give her what she wanted immediately.

Beth took in a sharp breath as he moved lower . . . lower. When his lips met her neck, desire rippled from her head to her toes and she let out a gasp. “Oh my!” 

Aidan flung back against the driver’s door, his eyes wide and his hands yanking at his hair. “Beth, I’m sorry! I got carried away. Damn it. I’m so sorry . . .” 

It took her a moment to realize he’d misinterpreted her response. “No, Aidan. Wait. I didn’t react that way because you made me feel uncomfortable.” 

He dropped his hands from his hair. “Then why?”

“I, uh . . .” She lowered her gaze. “I liked what you were doing . . . a lot.”

“Are you sure?”

“Yes.” Beth’s next words were unladylike, but the absence of his lips on her skin drove her crazy. “Actually, I’d like for you to do it again. Kiss my cheek. My neck . . . That is, if you don’t mind.”  

“Mind?” Aidan shook his head. “I’d be honored.”


Available Now From:

Amazon
Amazon UK
Smashwords
Barnes & Noble (Nook)
Chapters (Kobo)


STARBRIGHT (The Starlight Trilogy Book #2) 
Cover, Synopsis, and Exclusive Excerpt




STARBRIGHT SYNOPSIS

For starlet Elizabeth Sutton, it’s difficult to tell which has more momentum: her burgeoning film career, or the growing intimacy in her forbidden romance with notorious Hollywood outsider, Aidan Evans. 

When the opportunity to costar in a feature film arrives, Beth and Aidan fight to keep their relationship out of Hollywood’s rumor mill and away from the ever-watchful eyes of Starlight Studios head Luther Mertz, who condemns a union between them and threatens the future of Beth’s acting career. 

The pressure mounts as the cameras roll. Beth and Aidan navigate the precarious heights of superstardom while exploring their physical desires in secret. Beth grapples between the debilitating nervousness over her sexual inexperience and her unbridled need for Aidan. Meanwhile, the demons from Aidan’s past he thought forever vanquished linger on the fringes of a fragile inner peace . . . 

The Starlight Trilogy is a story of love and redemption set against the backdrop of the final years of Hollywood's Golden Age.


STARBRIGHT EXCERPT


The door opened and Aidan emerged from the bathroom, vigorously rubbing his hair with a towel. He wore navy blue briefs and a white T-shirt that hugged him across his chest and shoulders.

With the setting of the sun, darkness shrouded the room except for the soft light from the table lamp, lending him an ethereal glow. He looked like a powerful blend of runway model and unadulterated male. Her imagination couldn’t have constructed a more handsome man.

Any apprehension Beth had about her appearance vanished when Aidan spotted her on the bed. He didn’t say a word, but the truth sparked in his eyes. They consumed her ravenously, as if one good look wasn’t nearly enough.

He cleared his throat, though his voice sounded no less rough because of it. “Please stand up so I can see you properly.”

Beth tried to breathe normally, but it was impossible. She slid across the mattress, feeling a heightened awareness of every part of her body under his dedicated stare. As her bare feet met the carpet, she adjusted her nightgown. She wanted nothing more than to please him, to give him the show he craved and so much more.

“Turn around.” Aidan’s gentle plea was belied by the hunger in his eyes.

Beth did as he requested, receiving a sense of empowerment and pleasure that could never come from being one of the most popular actresses in the country, but only from the admiration of the man for whom she cared so deeply—the man who knew the real her, not the enhanced version created by the movie studio, and still desired her above all other women.

At the completion of her rotation, Beth made the thrilling discovery that Aidan was aroused. His erection pushed against his briefs, giving her the strongest indication yet as to how he looked beneath them. She longed to touch him like she did in the bathroom at his house, only in the flesh. And this time, she would bring him to orgasm.

Aidan set down the towel and moved toward her, his hair wild and damp, his eyes gloriously green and greedy. Beth breathed in deeply as his arms encircled her waist and he pulled her close. He smelled like lavender soap and summer rain. 

“You look stunning, Beth.” Aidan whispered the words, but they resonated as though he’d shouted them for the world to hear.

He leaned forward and kissed her carefully, kindling her internal flame of desire. Beth pushed her hands into his hair and pressed her lips more firmly to his, even adding a bit of tongue.

Aidan pulled back. His eyes searched hers, as if he sensed there was an additional method to her erotic madness. “Have you ever had an orgasm?”

Beth frowned. While she’d hoped that was where things would lead for both of them tonight, she wasn’t expecting such a blunt question. “I told you I’ve never been with a man before you.”

“I know.” Aidan glided his hands down her back, caressing her with silk and sweetness. “What I mean is… have you ever pleasured yourself?”

Beth’s eyes widened. “No, never. I was always under the impression it was inappropriate for a woman to… you know…”

The silence that greeted her was unnerving.

“Why, is that bad?” She pitched him a tentative glance.

“It’s not bad.” His voice sounded throatier than before.

“Are you certain?”

Aidan’s eyes grew darker. “I prefer that you’ve never had an orgasm.” He leaned in until his hot breath skated across her face. “Because I want to be the one to give you your first.”

Beth’s flame ignited into a raging inferno.

With a hum, Aidan brushed his lips to her ear, his fingers dancing over the skin the lace of her negligee revealed. “And I would like to do it tonight. That is, if you’ll award me the honor, little dove.”

Beth’s anxiety vanished as her desire and anticipation solidified into something so overwhelming, she couldn’t dream of saying no to him.

“I’m yours, Aidan.” A desperate whimper joined her reply. “Lay your hands on me… please.”


Available Now From:

Amazon

Amazon (UK)

Smashwords

Barnes and Noble (Nook) 


Five Reasons To Read The Starlight Trilogy: 

1. A sweeping Technicolor tale of forbidden romance. 

2. A detailed homage to the Golden Age of Hollywood cinema. 

3. Cameos from many of your favorite classic film stars. 

4. Transformation of a small town girl to silver screen starlet through Hollywood’s unforgiving lens. 

5. Close-up of a 1950s bad boy channeling a tragic past and the stress of sudden super stardom through the art of Method acting.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Alexandra Richland spends rotating twelve-hour shifts working as a registered nurse at a Toronto hospital, indulging in her love of science and medicine, and caring for patients with their own unique tales to tell.

When she is not on duty, Alexandra escapes into her own imagination. Therein lies a fantasy world of thrilling adventure, gorgeous men, classic Hollywood glamour, exotic getaways, and a seductive dose of romance. Alexandra captures these stories in her popular novels, The Starlight Trilogy and Frontline, her novella Slip Away, and her short story, Gilded Cage.


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Friday, April 10, 2015

Album Review: SENTIRE by Sam Yung



I usually don't do album reviews, but I can always make an exception for my favorite artists. 

So, I've been following Sam Yung's music since his amazing piano cover of Sia's "Titanium" on Youtube. The way he plays piano and strings is just so beautiful and touching in a way I don't think most music Youtubers do it. So when he announced he finally had an album released, I was so excited and relieved, pretty much because I'd felt that he should have had an original album years ago. But nonetheless, I'm so glad and proud of how far Sam has grown as a musician and composer. Sentire is a beautiful composition, and I'll be playing it over and over for awhile.

This album had a lot of Chinese musical influences, as well as influences from Paramore and Tonight Alive, especially in songs like "Fire: Part 2", "Terra", and "Faith".

I hope there are more original albums to come from Sam, because this is something that should be on the mainstream charts for a long time!

Listen to Sentire on Spotify HERE.

Rating: 4/5 stars ♥
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