Coffee & All Things Random

Basically where I do whatever: reviews, chat, random ponderings. I also dabble in Graphics so I might post some of my maybe-possibly-probablynot-worthy works. This is my first blog too, so that should explain the lack of whatever blogs usually have. d:


❝ ɪ'ᴍ ʟᴏsᴛ ᴀɴᴅ ɪ ᴄᴀɴ'ᴛ ʙᴇ ғᴏᴜɴᴅ. sᴏ ᴡʜᴏ ᴄᴀʀᴇs ɪғ ɪ ᴅʀᴏᴡɴ?❞ ~ᴊ.ᴍ.ɢ

BLOG TOUR/REVIEW: We Are Watching by M. Stephen Stewart

 *I’m posting this as part of the XpressoBookTours We Are Watching Blog Tour. I recieved a free ebook copy of this in order to do so.
WeAreWatching   Title: We Are Watching
   Author: M. Stephen Stewart
   Series: (Mindshare #1)
   Publication date: December 16th 2014
   Genres: Dystopia, Young Adult


      Henry Malone’s childhood was shattered by the  unexplained suicide of his father. Now a teenager,  his days are spent studying to become a Neural  Implant Technician for Planetary Link Corporation,  helping them maintain an iron grip over his walled  country and every iota of knowledge contained  within—but he leads a double life. Henry’s nights  are spent helping his mother wage a cyber war  against them in her quest to find the truth behind  his father’s death.


      He’s managed to keep his two lives separate, a delicate balance that’s endangered after he repairs the neural implant of a stranger. He finds she’s in possession of illegal memories from the outside world, unauthorized knowledge of his father, and a message: speak to me later and tell no one. Henry has a choice to make—ignore the message and maintain his double-life, or answer and risk everything to uncover secrets Planetary Link would kill to keep buried.

And Now For My Review!
Format: Ebook
    We Are Watching is a well written sci-fi novel full of action, strength, bravery, growth, secrets, deceit, and a chance to make everything right. Henry Malone has had a tough life, losing his father to a rumored suicide and having everyone use him to get shares and fame without caring about Henry and how he might feel about that. Because of that, Henry has an ill temper and tends to lose his cool at any mention of his father or mother. Which is also why he only has one real friend, Mark, who is there for him and doesn’t try exposing his secrets so he can benefit from them. Other than Mark, Henry only has his mother left, who stays in bed all day long on her NEX, and John Alford who treats him like a son and tries his best to be there for Henry. But while most of the world has moved on from trying to pick the truth from lies about Henry’s father’s death, his mother still works tirelessly to get to the truth. And it costs her.
     While I liked the characters, they weren’t quite fully developed. I would’ve loved to see more of Riya and Mark. While they are both characters that are in the novel almost always with Henry, we still don’t really know about them or have a good, solid feel for them. I want to know more about their backgrounds, their personalities, things we didn’t get to see. I mean, we all know Mark is strong, loyal to Henry, a great friend, and doesn’t like getting into trouble like Henry has a knack for. And we all know Riya is a strong, tough, determined young woman. She’s vulnerable and good at acting like all she ever does is cry when she needs to, she’s also good with a gun and she’s very knowledgeable. But what do we really know of her? She fought to get to Henry because of a vision her father had and risked her life to do so, she can mask her emotions fairly easily, she’s lost a lot like Henry, and she believes Henry can help her and her family. That’s just the surface of them though, I would’ve loved to see more of what lays underneath.
      Aside from that, I enjoyed how the information was spread out in the novel, and how much we came to learn without really feeling too overwhelmed. The information was given when we needed it and only when we needed it. But I also feel like we only really got to know Jeppe and Ourai’s sides. We never got all that much information on Planetary Link even though they’re clearly the bad guy. We get such a small glimpse of them, that honestly, Jeppe seems like the worst enemy they could have; though we all know that’s not true because of what little we do know of Planetary Link. Plink (Planetary Link) suppresses information, suppresses everything actually, that they feel the citizens of Gulf Market don’t need to know. In fact, the citizens only know what they for their jobs and their knowledge ends there! Plus, they’re spied on, always being watched and listened to. They have no privacy! Can you imagine that?
      Overall, I enjoyed reading this book despite the few issues. I would recommend this to lovers of sci-fi, and distopia.
      M. Stephen Stewart is a graduate of Indiana  University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism. He  makes his home in Indianapolis with his wife and two  dogs. In his spare time, Matt is an avid sports fan,  gamer, and reader, who loves to connect with new  people. You can usually find him around town with his  wife, exercising, or in front of his computer working on  a new project.
   Author links:

BLOG TOUR/ REVIEW: Wolfskin by W.R. Gringell

*I’m posting this as part of the XpressoBookTours Wolfskin Blog Tour. I recieved a free ebook copy of this in order to do so.

*This is also posted on Coffee & All Things Random.







   Title: Wolfskin
   Author: W.R. Gingell
   Publication date: May 1st 2015
   Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult

   ‘ If you want adventure, you have to march    right up to it and kick it in the shins . . .’
      At fourteen, barefoot and running wild, Rose  is delighted to be apprenticed to Akiva, the witch  of the forest. She thinks it will be all enchantment  and excitement, and not so much fuss about  baths. The reality is much more sober and  practical- that is, until she meets a mysterious wolf in the forest and is tricked into stepping off the path . . .
      In young, naive Rose, Bastian sees a way of escape. Cursed to remain in the shape of a wolf after running afoul of a powerful enchantress, he has lived many decades under a spell, and now he is both desperate and ruthless. But by breaking part of Bastian’s curse, Rose has caught the attention of Cassandra, the enchantress who cursed him: and Cassandra is by no means ready to forgive and forget.
      Meanwhile, wardens have been disappearing from the forest, one by one. Rose is certain that Cassandra is behind the disappearances, but can she and Bastian get to the bottom of the matter before Akiva disappears as well? And are Bastian’s motives entirely to be trusted?
      Sometimes the little girl in the red hood doesn’t get eaten, and sometimes the wolf isn’t the most frightening thing in the forest.
And Now For My Review!
Format: Ebook
Stars: 5/5
      Wolfskin is full of magic, witches, curses, power, action, romance, a cursed wolf, a bitter Enchantress, spells, growth, strength, trust, and bravery. It's about a young girl seeking out adventure who becomes an apprentice to a witch, who ends up breaking the first part of a wolf's curse, who learns spells and magic, and tries to figure out who is behind the missing Wardens and why they're doing it. It's about a fourteen year old girl maturing and growing into a young woman who finds love, friendship, and family. It's about Rose's adventures and the situations she gets into because of her naivety. It's a tale you'll surely love.
  • Characters:
    •    Rose is feisty, adventurous, and wants to be a Pirate so she never has to marry. She's strong and brave but also young and naive. She's a very believable character. She also tends to act without thinking. So watching her grow up, fight Cassandra, try to save Bastian from his curse, and try to solve the mystery of the missing Wardens was very satisfying and enjoyable.
    •    Bastian is probably my favorite. At first, he's a conniving, vicious wolf who's about to eat Rose on their first meeting. But when she breaks the first part of his curse he isn't so bad. He's a cursed man in the form of a wolf because of what he did, and he's playful, protective, kind, thoughtful, and I loved reading about his interactions with Rose. Sure, at times he was slightly scary and his behavior was unsettling (mostly when the black surrounded the gold of his aura) but overall he was a character I really love.He's also tortured and brooding, but he's quick witted and definitely entertaining, especially when with Rose. Their banter never bored me and was very entertaining.
    •     Akiva is a Warden who took on Rose as an apprentice. She's not your typical lovey, dovey, coddle-you woman. No. She's a tough, no nonsense old lady with a hard fist and scolding eyes. She makes Rose work for everything and gets her to figure out things on her own since Akiva was never told anything whilst she was young; she had to figure it out herself.Akiva shows her emotions in odd ways, but once you get to know her it's easy enough to tell when she's happy, relieved, pleased and so on. She teaches Rose about magic and responsibility and she plays a major role in who Rose grows to be.
  • Pacing:
    •    To me, I feel the pacing was perfect. Though at times, with all the parties Rose went to because her sister, Gwendolen, is obsessed with them (basically), it was a little repetitive. it was great seeing Rose interact with Gilbert at those points, as well as Liz and Harry, but I feel like maybe we could go without the party? Things happened at the parties that really worked well with the story, which it needed, but I wasn't that big of a fan reading about dancing and Gwen's little minions and Rose just talking to Gil or being forced to dance. It was well written, but not something I myself loved.
  • Writing:
    •    It flowed well, kept me hooked, and allowed me to visualize everything fairly easily. The dialogue between characters never felt forced or unreal. It's pretty much perfect.
    •    I love how Bastian and Rose didn't fall in love right away, as most stories would've played out. It helps that Rose was still a young girl when they meet, and that she treats him as more of a friend while Bastian tries to woo her for his own gain. But I love how gradual it is and how it's not only for her, but him too.
  • World-Building:
    •    Everything was easy enough to visualize and was incredibly well written. I feel like the world was flushed out well and I very much enjoyed talk of the forest because it was easy to see how much it means to the characters and why. It was like the forest was pulsing with it's own life and that it felt emotions, which is great because the author really let all of it come through the writing.
    •    I like how each Warden had a specific piece of the forest to claim as their own and care for. It really allowed you to understand the forest more because Wardens have to make sure the land is happy and healthy and the forest tens to act out or try to fight back when dying and uncared for.
    •    The laws of the forest really made it feel so much more real. And we really get to explore the forest more since Rose loves adventure and tends to slip away from the path. We learn of what lives in the forest (somewhat) and why the forest allows them to do certain things. We learn of the forest's magic and how much life it really holds.
    •    The magic was fantastic. The gradual growth of Rose's powers really helped us try to understand her magic. I like how she wasn't instantly powerful, or holding this epic power just waiting to burst. I enjoyed reading as she tried day after day after day to see the forest lines without closing her eyes. It made everything feel more real because she had to work hard to get to where she wanted to be.
      Overall, I loved reading Wolfskin and I recommend this to everyone. Especially if you love to read about witches, wolves, magic, and fantasy.
      W.R Gingell is a Tasmanian author who enjoys  reading, bacon, and slouching in front of the fire to  write.
   Author links:


July 6th
A British Bookworm’s Blog >> Excerpt
Books and Ashes >> Review
Girls With Books >> Excerpt
Author & Book Spotlights >> Review

July 7th
Book Nerd Paradise >> Review
A Book Addict’s Bookshelves >> Interview
happy tails and tales >> Review

July 8th
Coffee & All Things Random  >> Review {me}
CBY Book Club >> Excerpt
Bea’s Book Nook >> Review

July 9th
Bookwyrming Thoughts  >> Guest post
Archaeolibrarian – I Dig Good Books! >> Review
Kimber Leigh Writes >> Interview

July 10th
Mandy’s Books and Beauty >> Review
Blog for readers, writers and bloggers by Daniela Ark >> Excerpt
Just Us Book Blog >> Review
Mythical Books >> Guest post







{If you click on the Xpresso Book Tours button it'll bring you to the tour page}

BLOG TOUR/REVIEW: Sleepless by Michael Omer

 *I’m posting this as part of the XpressoBookTours Sleepless Blog Tour. I recieved a free ebook copy of this in order to do so.
**This is also posted on Fishing For Books.
   Title: Sleepless
   Author: Michael Omer
   Series: (Narrowdale #1)
   Publication date: January 10th 201
   Genres: Paranormal, Thriller, Young Adult


      Don’t fall asleep. Don’t dream. Don’t get  caught.


      At the beginning of her freshman year of high  school, Amy can think of nothing worse than  moving to the boring, suburban town of  Narrowdale. And that’s before she starts having  the same nightmare over and over again, waking up every night to a creepy whistle outside her window and being haunted by a mysterious, menacing presence. Getting used to the new school becomes the least of her problems.


      As she delves deeper to uncover the truth, she unknowingly edges closer to mortal danger. Terrible events that took place years ago threaten to happen again, but now Amy’s life is on the balance. Unfortunately, the one guy who is supposed to protect her, nineteen year old Peter, doesn’t believe her.


      Some things seem to happen only in Narrowdale, where dark secrets hide beneath the surface…


      As she confronts the mysteries of Narrowdale, Amy documents her experiences in her blog. The book contains live links to this blog.



Now for my review!



      Sleepless is full of bravery, friendship, creepily intelligent  homeless men, weird neighbors, consistent nightmares, darkness, kidnappings, and investigations. It's basically Scooby-Doo, but less cartoonish and childish and more realistic and scary. It's about Amy and how in her new home located in Narrowdale, weird things keep happening. It's about the friends she makes and what they hear or see together. It's about them trying to figure out what Amy's nightmares are about and searching for clues and trying to solve what no one else did. Plus, it's infused with paranormal-like aspects. It's great!


      I'll start off with what I don't like, since there's very little.


What I Didn't Like/Had Problems With:


  • The beginning.
  •          I wasn't really sure about Amy in the beginning, because it seemed like she was always complaining (why did we even have to move, I miss LA, the air conditioning guy should know how to do his stupid job, it's so hot, I can't sleep, I don't  like most of the girls in my math class) and she seemed a little dull. Her character definitely grew on me, though.
  •       The pacing, for me, seemed slow. She moves in, spends a week with nightmares and unpacking and talking to her friends over the phone. She starts school, the girls are mean, she doesn't fit in, a nice girl keeps talking to her, she doesn't understand the math, she can't sleep, she forgot her lunch. I just wasn't a huge fan of the beginning because it didn't really capture my interest. I realize now though that it was needed for the story and was a rather great way of introducing the characters and getting us ready for what will soon come.
  •       uh, that's about it, actually.



What I like:

  •       Her nightmares. The way they were introduced each time was really interesting. You could feel her mind fog and as her mind turned to that of the other girl, it was a smooth transition and almost eerie.
    • It's dark. My head is pounding. Someone hit it, I suddenly remember. I'm shivering. It's so cold in here, in this dark room. How long have I been here? A day? Two? How many times did he walk in, whisper in my ear? How many times have I tried to talk to him, beg for my life, muffled by the rag stuck in my mouth? (Chap. 26 at 67%)
  • The characters.
    •      Amy: She's brave (although some may call her stupid because she knowingly broke into a house of a kidnapper), determined (she wouldn't stop trying to figure out what her dreams meant until she finally got the answer), and fairly easy to connect with (she's a 14 year old girl moving to a new place and trying to fit in and make friends, she thinks boys are cute and she's normal {if you don't count the nightmares which are basically of the past she knew nothing about}).
    •      Shane: He only just met Amy, but he's there for her. He's kind, thoughtful, likes to take videos and photos, and he's basically her confident because he can hear what she heard too. He makes her feel like she isn't crazy, basically.
    •      Coral: She's the nice girl who kept trying to talk to Amy at first. She ends up also being there for Amy, and though she didn't hear what Shane and Amy did that night, she still sticks with them. She tries to help Amy keep up with her studies, she goes along with Amy's ideas even if they're crazy, stupid, or dangerous. They're like the Scooby-Doo gang, alright? They're a group of close friends (it doesn't matter that they just met, they're all friends) who hear and see paranormal things and decide to investigate.
    •       Edger: He's the creepily intelligent homeless man. Basically, he spews random things to those he meets, and Amy thinks it's because he knows things no one else does. He knew she'd become friends with Shane and that Shane liked the moon, he knew she had money (even the exact amount) even though she told him she didn't have any, and he knew about her nightmares. He even gave her clues on how to find out what they were about and so Amy, Shane, and Coral then looked it up and thus their investigation began.
    •       Alex: He's the weird neighbor. At first he was kinda creepy, because he seemed to know things she didn't (you shouldn't go out at night, there's thing the come out; bad things. things are best left in the past). He was a cool character though, ending up being someone who helps. I like him.
  • The writing.
    •       It flowed well, had a great tone, definitely had me feeling scared and anxious at some points, and had a great pace (after the small part in the beginning).
  •       Overall, I really enjoyed reading Sleepless and I would recommend this to everyone. Especial if you love thriller or paranormal books.
Michael   AUTHOR BIO:
      My name is Michael Omer, and I’m a writer,  journalist and game designer. I wrote and published  my first novel when I was sixteen, and  figured I’d keep at it. Since then, I have published  two more novels, and wrote… who can even count  how many? I’m happily married to a woman who  keeps pushing me to write more, and have three kids  who insist I should stop writing and come play with  them. I also have two dogs.
   Author links:


BLOG TOUR/REVIEW: Sarina, Sweetheart by Megan Carney

   Title: Sarina, Sweetheart
   Author: Megan Carney
   Publication date: March 5th 2015
   Genres: New Adult, Science Fiction


      Her name is Sarina Wocek. Her breath is

 poison. She was not born out of love.


      Twenty-three years ago, government officials  traced the budding epidemic of hemorrhagic fever  HF186-2A in south Florida to the Wocek family and  their adorable six-week-old daughter, Sarina. Her  father, Gregory, admitted his role in genetically engineering a biological weapon with pride. She was taken to a lab hidden in a rural area of New Hampshire. She hasn’t left since.


      Her government keepers could cure her, but they won’t. Genetically engineering a child to be a weapon of mass destruction, that’s unethical. Refining a weapon of mass destruction that someone else created? That’s just being clever.


      After twenty-three years of captivity, she escapes. She crosses an ocean to put her father and the lab behind her, but it’s not enough. When she sees the first bleeding sore, she knows she didn’t leave the virus behind either.


      The only way she’ll be free is by destroying every trace of the lab. She only has one advantage; she doesn’t care if she makes it out alive.

And Now For My Review!
Format: Ebook
      Sarina, Sweetheart is full of action, bravery, survival, self-discovery, romance, experiments, and evil military leaders working to make weapons out of young girls! It's full of pain, regret, revenge, and learning to trust as well as love. It's a tale in which Sarina carries a virus that kills all she comes in contact with once the trigger is activated. It's about her escaping the laboratory, discovering herself, getting experience, figuring out who is in charge and what the trigger is, and getting revenge. It's a beautiful and painful story that's incredibly realistic and easy to connect with.
      It's cleverly plotted, well-written, has a brilliant (and easy-to-connect-with) heroine, and is full of raw emotions. Sarina, despite being locked up in a laboratory without much human socialization for all of her life and having been a lab rat (she was studied, tutored via live chat or books, had undergone involuntary surgery multiple times), is still a compassionate and thoughtful character. She hates the fact that she's killed (either because she contaminated them or they were killed because they had helped her) and she hates the fact that she puts so many people in danger being out in the open.
      She is brilliant and strong though. During her time locked up, she managed to forge secret survival skills and plans that could help her avoid killing others. Just from reading magazines or watching television (which had all gone to supervisors to be checked first) she had learned tricks on how to preserve water and how to survive in the wild. She stored information about making homemade pepper spray, and even learned how to get what she wants without killing just from observing others. She is a quick learning and is incredibly intelligent. She can also speak multiple languages.
      She knows her education was only provided so she could be the perfect weapon, but she uses it against them. And so her plan of revenge, and her escape was partially thanks to them (the evil military man and those who work for him).
      I recommend this to all who like a realistic story with great characters and a clever plot. And sci-fi lovers!

      Megan Carney is an author, geek and  amateur photographer living in the Twin  Cities. She has ten years of experience  in the field of computer security. Her  previous short story publications  include: ‘Flighty Youth’ in the Raritan,  ‘Modern Mayhem’ in the Wayfarer,  ‘Swing By Close’ in the Wayfarer,  ‘Directions’ in the Bell Tower. ‘Swing  By Close’ and ‘Directions’ both won first  prize in the fiction sections of that issue.  The Christian Science Monitor dubbed her  self-published photography book, ‘Signs  of My Cities’ as having “youthful zest.”


      Her non-literary creations include: a robot to clean the bathroom tub, Zim and Gir costumes, No-Dig tomato stakes, StickFriend the bear bag hanger, and a burning coal costume so she could be Katniss for a night.



June 29th
Got Nikki? >> Interview
Weezled >> Review
Books Can Take You There >> Review
CBY Book Club >> Excerpt

June 30th
Authors You Want to Read >> Excerpt
4covert2overt ~ A Place in the Spotlight >> Guest post
Bea’s Book Nook >> Excerpt
A British Bookworm’s Blog >> Guest post

July 1st
Books That Hook >> Excerpt
Just Us Book Blog >> Guest post
Glorious Panic >> Excerpt
Word to Dreams >> Review
Girls With Books >> Excerpt

July 2nd
Coffee & All Things Random >> Review {me}
Mythical Books >> Guest post
Us Girls & A Book >> Review
Escape Into A Book >> Review
Archaeolibrarian – I Dig Good Books! >> Review

July 3rd
The Bookwhore Diaries >> Review
Random Redheaded Ramblings >> Review
Author & Book Spotlights >> Review
Desert Rose Reviews  >> Interview
The Boundless Book List >> Review




(It's a pretty short review, but it's all I got. d:)

BLOG TOUR/REVIEW/EXCERPT: Scar of the Downers by Scott Keen

*I'm posting this as part of the XpressoBookTours Scar of the Downers Blog Tour. I recieved a free ebook copy of this in order to do so.

**This is also posted on my blog Fishing For Books.






 Title: Scar of the Downers

 Author: Scott Keen
 Publication date: February 27th 2015
 Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult


       Branded on the slaves in the Northern Reaches  beyond Ungstah, the scar marks each one as a  Downer. It is who they are. There is no escaping  this world. Still, strange things are stirring.


       Two foreigners ride through the Northern  Reaches  on a secret mission. An unknown  cloaked figure  wanders the streets of the dark city  of Ungstah.  What they want no one can be sure,  but it all  centers around a Downer named Crik.


       Crik, too scared to seek freedom, spends his  days  working in his master’s store, avoiding the  spirit- eating Ash Kings, and scavenging food for himself and his best friend, Jak. Until he steals from the wrong person. When Jak is sold to satisfy the debt, Crik burns down his master’s house and is sentenced to death.


      To survive, Crik and his friends must leave behind their life of slavery to do what no other Downer has ever done before – escape from the city of Ungstah



An Excerpt:

Crik smiled. “I brought something for you.” He pulled out the torn piece of bread and handed it to her.

“Where did you get it?”

“A simple thank you is all I need,” said Crik. She gazed at him, and it felt as if he knew what she was thinking. “I’m careful. I’ve lived this long.”

“I didn’t say anything,” said Tinker. “But since you mentioned it. Thank you. You’re such a nice Downer . . . and that’s saying a lot. Some of them are crueler than their masters.”

Tinker took a bite of the bread and chewed slowly.

“Is it good?” Crik asked.

Tinker nodded. “It’s fresher than the ones Morta serves to her customers. I hope you didn’t go through a lot of trouble getting it.”

Crik thought about it and just said, “Not too much.” Then he picked a crumb out of her dirty, matted hair, which she brushed behind her ear.

“You had something in your hair,” said Crik, slightly embarrassed.

“Just one thing?” said Tinker.

“That I could see in the dark.”

They laughed. They always did when they met. All the grime on their skin, tears in their clothes, and lice in their hair disappeared when they were with each other. Crik didn’t feel like a Downer with Tinker. He felt like a young man; he felt brave, as if he could conquer the city. With her he wasn’t afraid of Kilvar, of the rats, the Ashes, or even the Gaunt King himself. The dangers of the city and the world melted away when they were together.

Getting up, Crik walked to the ledge of the roof and looked eastward into the darkness, past the torches and walls. He searched for the words to say, his gaze burrowing into the wall of night. Crik’s voice was quiet when he spoke.

“I heard something yesterday when I was in Briars and Thickets.”

“You went in there?” Tinker got up and crossed to him.

“That’s not the point.” Crik looked at her. “Some men were talking. I listened to their conversation. They spoke of something . . . something called the Avarah.”

Tinker’s brow furrowed, and her face turned serious. “The Avarah?”

“Yeah. You work in an inn. Have you heard people speak of them? Do you know anything about what they are?”

“I haven’t heard a lot,” said Tinker. “What I have heard isn’t very good. But they’re mainly just in stories. No one believes that they’re real. Why?”

“What were the stories about them like?”

Tinker grew quiet again as if she were deep in thought. “I’ve heard they were some kind of powerful being who used to live here long ago. But for some reason they don’t anymore. I guess the people in Ungstah killed them or something. Why? Why do you ask?”

“One man said they’ve returned.”

“Returned?” Tinker gave a little laugh. “I don’t think they’re even real. He was probably crazy. A lot of strange people come through the city.”

“That’s the thing,” said Crik. “This man is the Captain of the City’s Watch.”

Tinker crossed her arms. “Why do you ask me all these questions?”

“I was hoping that if the Avarah have returned . . . I was hoping they were good.”

“Be careful,” said Tinker, grabbing hold of his hand.

“Careful of what?”

“Hope can be dangerous thing for a Downer.”

“Hope is all I have.”


And now, on to my review!
Format: Ebook
4/5 stars

Scar of the Downers is an interesting new fantasy book. It is full of survival, strength, growth, trust, and the fight for freedom. It involves the Downers being treated like slaves, barely ever being fed and always having to do as their master asks. They are treated so poorly and cruelly, but then they have help and suddenly everything is looking brighter. It's about friendship and trust and it's a tale written to make scared characters a little braver, a littler more trusting, and a lot more loving.


What I Like:


-The World-Building || The world building was well done, in my opinion. I mainly enjoyed the description of the evil lurking within the land and the cursed King, how Ungstah is described as darker than other cities so much so that travelers can feel the change once they're close enough. It made for a much more scary type of vibe, and really helped the mystery grow where the King and his Guards are involved.


  • -The Action || I love action, period, but I especially loved it in this book because of the magical elements. Aniel has this sword, right? And so, it can turn into water and end the lives of the Ash Kings, and it can also turn into fire. How cool is that?!
  • -The Characters || Well, most of them. I enjoyed reading about Crik (he's probably my favourite), Jak (or maybe he is), Tinker, Chaser, Aniel (she's wicked cool), Talorc, Edem, and Gabril. I wasn't so much a fan of Kilvar, Bhoor, and the other cruel Downer owners. I know they have to be cruel in order for the story to work as it does and I can understand that, I just don't like them because if they were real I'd want to punch them in the face so bad. Overall though, the characters were great and I enjoyed the different voices us readers got to hear as we read. The visual we got was much richer because of that.
  • -The Writing || It flowed well, and despite the filler-like vibe I felt most of the time, it was still a very enjoyable read because the writing really lured me in.



What I don't like:


      There's not much; It's mainly the pace. Throughout most of the book, I felt like it was all a large filler. Not much seems to happen. I kept reading and all I got was that they were treated poorly (they were always hungry, thirsty, and dirty, always scouring the streets for whatever they could find), they needed to get money so Jak wouldn't be sold (because their owner has a dept he needs payed but refuses to part with the silver he gained from killing a man, and so they stole from a house down a street), they aren't that fond of some of the other Downers (Slink especially, since he always seems to sneak on them when they're walking down the street), the Ash Kings almost killed them multiple times (since they were out on the streets during curfew trying to get food and money), and their owner is a cruel, cruel man. And yet, as you should realize, most of it happens in the same streets over and over again. It worked well with the story, but made the pace more slow and akin to that of a filler chapter.


      I also didn't like how quickly Slink changed. At first he's this annoying, slightly creepy Downer that Crik and Jak weren't fond of, as he was always sneaking up on them and even stole food from them once. Then suddenly when Aniel saves him he's all nice and supportive and gets along with the others real well. I think there should have been more time taken to develop his change. Other than that though, I really enjoyed reading Scar of the Downers.


      So, overall, Scar of the Downers was a very enjoyable read, despite the slow/filler-like pacing. I would recommend this to you lovers of action and fantasy.


       Scott grew up in Black River, NY, the  youngest  of three children. While in law  school, he  realized he didn’t want to be a  lawyer. So he did the practical thing – he  became a writer. Now, many years later with an  MFA in script and screenwriting, he is married  with four daughters, two of whom  he homeschools.
Author links:


June 22nd
Kara the Redhead >> Review
Suzy Turner, YA Author  >> Guest post
Padme’s Library >> Excerpt

June 23rd
Mom With A Kindle >> Interview
Dowie’s Place >> Review
Mythical Books >> Guest post

June 24th
ConvergenceBookReviews >> Review
We Do Write >> Interview
Authors You Want to Read >> Excerpt
Just Us Book Blog >> Top 10 List

June 25th
Hopelessly Devoted Bibliophile >> Guest post
Coffee & All Things Random >> Review [me]
A British Bookworm’s Blog >> Excerpt

June 26th
Classy Cat Books >> Review
Brooke Blogs >> Top 10 List
Crazy Beautiful Reviews >> Excerpt
Fandemonium Network >> Interview







{Excerpt provided by Xpresso Book Tours}

BLOG TOUR/REVIEW: An Absence of Light by Meradeth Houston

 *I’m posting this as part of the XpressoBookTours An Absence of Light Blog Tour. I recieved a free ebook copy of this in order to do so.

*This is also posted on my blog, Fishing For Books.





  Title: An Absence of Light

  Author: Meradeth Houston
  Published by: Evernight Teen
  Publication date: October 31st 2014
  Genres: Horror, Science Fiction, Young Adult
Goodreads || Amazon || B&N


      Leah’s always seen the shadow creatures. She  thought she was immune to their evil—until now.

      She’s walked into a massacre, stolen a BMW,  and is running from the law for a crime she didn’t  commit. Nineteen-year-old Leah’s life just went from  mildly abnormal to totally crazy at lightning speed.  But no one will believe that the shadow creatures  are framing her for the murder, because she’s the only one that can see them. At least that’s what she thought.


      When Leah stumbled across a group who share her ability, she discovers they have something she doesn’t: a way to fight back. When the group offers to teach her how to kill the shadow creatures, Leah jumps at the chance. But something is brewing with the creatures. They’re tracking down the hunters like there’s no tomorrow. Leah suspects that maybe there won’t be, and it’s up to her to make sure tomorrow comes. Because she’ll do anything to stop the shadows, including risking her life—and the life of the one she loves—to keep the world from being lost to darkness forever. 

And now, on to my review!
Format: Ebook
4/5 stars
      An Absence of Light is a book full of action, growth, bravery, romance, and perhaps even horror. I honestly didn’t find it scary, however if I were to deal with something like that in real life, then yeah, I’d be pretty terrified. We follow Leah in the beginning after the tragic death of her family, and then she runs away and stumbles upon a man who can also see the shadows. It all begins unraveling from there, learning more of her special abilities, of the shadows, and of how to possibly solve the problems the shadows’ mere presence create. In the midst, there’s romance, action, and a whole lot of twists.
What I Liked:
  •       The writing. It was easy to follow and get immersed in the story line. I had only planned on reading a chapter, maybe two, and then I ended up finishing it so… That speaks for itself. d: But it also flowed well, and the interactions between the characters were often slightly amusing. Though sometimes it felt a little too unrealistic.
  •       The abilities of the shadows. I enjoyed the twists and the new information Adam, Manuel, and Lee kept discovering. Some felt a little like they were thrown in, but nevertheless the twists kept me on my toes and I was surprised more then once. I especially love the way the shadows are explained. Their description just makes you imagine this creepy, slimy, black thing with no particular shape that can easily blend in and mess with you. It’s a little scary, right?
  •       The characters. I enjoyed how they each portray their own way of protection, how they all seem to bond so well. They are each strong and determined, having lost so much to the shadows. I was rooting for them throughout the book and with each moment they felt hopeless I felt even more hope that they’d get through it. I loved the emotions because of that.
  •       I like how not all of the shadows are bad. I won’t go into further detail though, as this is already partially a spoiler (sorry).
What I Didn’t Like:
  •       The ending (I won’t go into further details because of spoilers) seemed far too quick. Possibly rushed. My heart wanted to break, but with how quickly it happened, I didn’t really feel anything…
  •       The specific relationship that is formed happened so suddenly. I get that they’re afraid that they’ll die and so they want to make sure they know how they feel, but to just climb into bed and be all touchy-feely after so long of going back and forth between friends and enemies? I feel like we should get more of them slowly leading up to that point, because before that we pretty much only have protective instincts and seemingly not any real emotion.
  •       Adam’s sister’s condition, how she got like that, isn’t explained and I feel like it should be further explored. Perhaps then we could feel a deeper terror and be able to immerse ourselves deeper in the story?
  •       Considering Amy had been possessed for so long, you’d think they would have noticed others as well. But instead, they all show up once they realize what Amy is. That, well, it just makes it seem as if it was thrown in there as a second thought. I think we should’ve seen more like Amy beforehand, and then when they realize what she is they can piece it together based on what they saw before, instead of there suddenly being groups of them after Amy is discovered.


      Overall, I enjoyed reading An Absence of Light and I would recommend it for you fans of horror, sci-fi, and romance. Oh, and action!




So, I'm not necessarily back. But I will post from time to time. Mainly blog tours, since I signed up for those while I still used Booklikes, and so this blog is what's linked. But yeah.


I hope you're having a great day/afternoon/night!


Library of Books

Hi guys!


I got a new website (one that actually works properly) and so from now on I won't be posting a whole lot on here. I'll be posting there and maybe the occasional post here but I don't know. I'll still be here, but I'll post there, so you can go check it out if you like!




I've already posted my May tbr and two different reviews over there if you want to check those out too.


Of High Treason: 


Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children: 


If you don't want to that's fine. It's your choice. :) Just thought I'd inform you all.



{Late} April Wrap-Up

**This is also posted on Library of Books.


     So, I read a lot of books in the month of April. And all were pretty much ebooks. I'm pretty sure I wrote a review for them all, but if not, I'll tell you. If you want to see my review for any of them, just click on the cover. d:






      So, that’s the order I read them in. Well, mostly. Ah, yeah the only one I didn’t do a review for is Prophecy’s Queen by Timothy Bond because I was Beata Reading it and only sent my thoughts to the author. Now though, since it’s published and some things have changed, I’ll probably re-read it and write a proper review.


But yeah, that's that. d:



Mosquitoland by David Arnold

         **This is also posted on Goodreads.


    I'm incredibly emotional right now, so I don't know  but this might all come out as an emotional, jumbled  mess, but nevertheless I hope you understand what  I'm writing. I mean, honestly, I'm out of sorts and just  whoa.


      Basically, Mosquitoland fucks with your heart. It  makes you question your barriers and then with each  new lesson and story Mim shares your walls are  tumbling down and hot damn by the end it's like your  world is shined in a whole new light! You start  questioning everything, like, would I be a good  person  in Mim's eyes? Am I really as kind and  thoughtful as I  think I am? Or am I just another  person roaming the  world with a fantasy in my head  and a reality of  nothing but society's expectations?  Do I have real  friends, like Beck and Walt, or is  everything fake? Do I  know the real meaning of my  life, of why I am the way  I am? Can I be better? Can  I be me? And you realize, fuck you know nothing,  not really. But at least your eyes are opened now, right? That's Mosquitoland. A brilliant, heart-wrenching novel about a teenaged girl and a journey in which she goes on to get to her mother that opens her eyes and the readers' too because everything just makes sense and is true and gosh everything I feel is in this book!


      But aside from the emotional pull and the brilliance of the content, the characters are even better. Like, how is that possible?! The main character, Mim (aka Mary Iris Malone), is deep and thoughtful and has had so much shit thrown her way that I just can't believe she is still, well, Mim. And then there's Beck who is a few years older then her and is just as equally deep and thoughtful and is basically the other half of Mim because they've gone through so much and their minds are both so unique. And then there's Walt, who is such an amazing character who has a brilliant mind and laugh and smile and he's just so... Walt. Like, every character is so amazing, they each leave a different impression on you and you can't pick a favourite, at least not just one, because they're all so amazing and I love that.


      I especially love how the entirety of the novel is Mim and her traveling to get to her mother because damn her mother needs her and Mim needs her mother! I love all the different characters she meets (cough*Arlene*cough) and the different things she sees and experiences (the tent and "Shadow Boy", the brilliance and awesomeness that are Beck and Walt) and just her overall journey. She learns a lot and because she has seen and learned so much her thoughts are changing and with her thoughts her view changes and I love the process. I especially love the letters she writes. They hold past memories, new memories, and through them, especially the last few, you see how much she's changed and it's wonderful.


      I just love everything about this book. It is officially my all time favourite. Numero Uno. The big number 1. The best novel I have ever read. The best novel I have ever read that I am most likely going to re-read over and over again ever though I never re-read books. So you best get to reading Mosquitoland because I assure you, you will not regret it. You will love it. And you will adore it. And you will share the love.<3




So, that's that. I highly suggest you read this book. I'm not even kidding.



Shadow, Shadow by V.B. Marlowe

   *I received the ebook version of this in exchange  for an  honest review. [Thanks to Xpressoreads]

   **This will also be posted on Goodreads.


      Shadow, Shadow follows four teenagers and their  life that changes due to a strange box each of them  received on their birthday. Now that one box has been  used, the rest must too or a loved one will disappear  and never be seen again.


      It's a very interesting concept, and I like how the  box holds such power and what happens when you do  or don't use it. I wasn't really a fan of the whole  shadows thing, though. I get that there needed to be  a reason for all the disappearing people, but using  shadows just kinda fell flat for me. There wasn't much  fear or mystery in it to me, and I feel like there should  have been, considering the choices they need to  make and the lives that will be ruined.


      I enjoyed how the characters used this power though, and how they changed. I like how we really got to know and see how that power messed with them. I will admit though, I had a problem with Teaghan. She was a stuttering, social mess, and then as soon as she used the box she changed. It was so quick, so odd how she turned into a completely different person. I honestly think the process should have been slower, more gradual. I also didn't really like Ava-Kaya, as she had so many different sides, and she seems to love messing with the kids and taking advantage of them. Harley and Brock, I like them, though. I will admit that I didn't like Harley at first. She came off as bratty and annoying, but then you learn more about her and you start to really feel for her. Harley goes through so much and yet she never feels good about having to use the box, and she tries to get Teaghan to see her reason and we just see her grow. She still has a long way to go, but you can already tell that she's going to be more brave and strong and selfless the more their story continues. And Brock is already partially there. They seem like they'd make a great team, like they'll be the ones to stop all the shadow business.


      Overall, the characters were okay, the plot and details were okay, and the writing was pretty good. Even so, I am interesting in reading the next book because I really want to see how their story continues and if they'll break or come out as heroes. Anyway, I recommend this to lovers of fantasy, mystery, adventure, and maybe even romance.






Loose Changeling by Andrea(A.G.) Stewart

  *I won the ebook ARC version of this in a  giveaway  on  Booklikes.

  **This will also be posted on Goodreads.


      Loose Changeling follows a young woman  named  Nicole whose world is changing and  becoming rather  insane. First she finds out her  husband is cheating on her, then a strange mouse  keeps bothering her, a strange man claiming to be  a divorce lawyer shows  up, and then sh*t gets real.


      I love how quickly the action gets started, how  soon all the troubles arise and come into place. I  love the flow of the writing and the story, and how  much Nicole's character developed and changed. I  like the mysterious aspects and the danger and the  thrill, and how you get so immersed in the story you  find yourself rooting for Nicole and then realize  you're trying to solve the mysteries as well.


      I also really like the characters. They grow so much and they're just overall very likeable. I would share more, but what I have in mind only consists of spoilers.... Just know that they're likeable and grow a whole lot in the duration of the story. It's like watching you're child grow up. I'm just kidding, I don't actually know how that feels. But you get the point. I hope.


      Anyway, although I liked the book and enjoyed the characters and action, what I wasn't a huge fan of was the love triangle. I get that Nicole and Owen are divorcing, but her feelings for Kailen seem too quick to form. After everything they went through together on their journey, there wasn't really any explanation for her to fall for him. At least to me there wasn't. I just wish their feelings were slower to develop, and that there was more to it to make said feelings form.


      Overall, I liked Loose Changeling and I can't wait for the second book! I would recommend this to anyone who likes to read books containing fantasy, action, romance, and great character development.




So, that's that. d:


Rememberers by C. Edward Baldwin

    *I received the ebook version of this from a  giveaway  on LibraryThing.

    **This will also be posted on Goodreads.


      Rememberers was not what I expected it to be. I  expected it to be more of the fantasy genre. Instead,  it's all about religion, science, psychology, terrorists,  demons, God, and Adam & Eve. We mainly follow  Kallie, a nineteen-year-old college student who  experiences daily feelings of deja vu, and who ends up  immersed in the world of religion and the evil that goes  with the good. She also ends up being of interest to  two catholic figures and an ICE agent. So obviously,  nothing is as it seems.


      First though, I just want to say one thing about the  religion: I was often bored while reading the religion  parts. Mainly because much was repeated, but also  because it happened so often I just found myself  eager for that part to be over. And it's not like I have anything against religion; my grandparents are highly religious and strongly believe in God. But there was just so much of it. And I get that religion plays a huge part for the novel, but reading many things over and over again just in different words did not appeal to me. Other then that, though, Rememberers proved to be an interesting read.


      I really like the idea behind the Rememberers and their powers. I especially love how there are past lives and they way that plays a part in the story. Reading about Kallie and seeing her perspectives change and her mind grow stronger was just so fascinating, especially because she can tear into those dang demons for three hours straight. I mean, it's action, and I love me some action. I also love how we got to go into minds other than Kallie's though, so we could make up our own theories about what these other people plan do to with her. I actually enjoyed reading about her interactions with certain people, because we readers know some of the characters she hangs out with don't have good intentions, and she herself doesn't know. So to see her try and piece it together, to see her friends piece it together, is interesting because we get to see how their minds work. All in all, I really like the writing and the way it all mapped out.


      The characters (the religious figures, anyway) were not what I would have expected. It was good though. I think my favourite character would have to be Johnny Swag (because that last name, yo), because he's so dark and creepy and scarily brilliant. If he were a real person that I knew, I would probably be terrified of him, considering what he is capable of. And I know he wasn't in his right mind (if you've read Rememberers, you'll know what I'm taking about) but still, to be how he is and not see any wrong... It was just really fascinating to see him plan and take action.


      I don't have much else to say. I would recommend this to those who don't mind religious talk, or books that are based on religion.




Uh, yeah. d:



Broken People by Ioana Visan

  *I won the ebook version of this in a LibraryThing  giveaway.
  **This will also be posted on Goodreads and Coffee & Books.


      Broken People follows Dale and his quest to  complete this mysterious mission of utter importance.  Along the way, whilst he and his partner Cole wait for  the right day to strike, complications arise and both are  thrust into the world of The Golden Lady and The  Nightingale Circus.


      What I love about Broken People is how most of the  characters, if not all, are human but not at the same  time. The title describes them perfectly. They're broken  people, made of flesh and bone and add in a little metal  and they're no longer complete. It's all so normal to  them, though, having to go in every once in a while to  change their parts or make adjustments. It's fascinating.  Especially how Rake and Spinner can do practically everything. What they did to Cole was both tragic and brilliant simultaneously.


      And while you find yourself not exactly liking Dale at first, seeing as he seems rather selfish and cold in the beginning, you can't help but like him and maybe even love him by the time the book is at its end. The Golden Lady and him, their interactions always made me smile because I could just tell from the beginning what would transpire between the two. However, while you knew it was coming and knew it to be true in the way they act towards each other, there was never really much explained or done to have made their feelings change. They were business partners, and then they care and haven't really acted any differently. I just would have preferred more between them, to explain why they decided to have feelings for the other. Other then that, that characters are great.


      The writing is great too. It flows well and the circus was well described, with its inner workings and how it's controlled. I loved the magic element and the acts and just how well it was described. I could visualize most, if not all that was happening and it was fascinating. I also love the action. I mean, who doesn't?


      But anyway, I really enjoyed reading Broken People, and I recommend this to all you lovers of magic, action, romance, and broken people [see what I did there? d:].




So, that's that. d:


Of Royal Descent by Ember Shane

  *This will also be posted on Goodreads, and Coffee &  Books.


      Doyle Hawthorne is a 21-year-old college student  who sets out with his best friend Chuck Johnson to  search for his biological grandfather. Along the way  they uncover more then they ever could have  bargained for and realize a darker entity lives among  them.


      Of Royal Descent is full of action, deceit, love,  bravery, humour, and the best of all: Zombies. What  more could you ask for? This is the perfect  combination of everything I love in a novel. The author  knew what she was  doing when writing this, no doubt.


      The writing flows well and kept me immersed in the  story as it was so easy to fall into. The way Zombies  are described, their origin, and what they are to everyone else around them is so intriguing and not something I've read before. Especially how they act and the process of turning into one once the disease has been activated.


      Now, characters. I love them all. Well, okay maybe not Bradbury. He's horrible to everyone and he takes darkness to a whole new level. But other then him they are all easy to love. I especially love Doyle and Chuck's friendship. They have such a great bond, and Chuck stays by Doyle's side the entire time even when Doyle was an ass and it's just great. I just really love how bonded they are, how much they care. They aren't afraid to tell each other they care. In fact, all of the characters are ones with large hearts (with the exception of Bradbury, MZs [mindless zombies], and soldiers under Bradbury's orders). They all help in some way and you can tell they only want what's best for the people around them.


      Of Royal Descent is now one of my favourite books, and I hope to get my hands on the second book soon. So I recommend this to everyone. As long as you don't mind violence. Or slightly sexual scenes (it's never explicit or too bad). But yes, please read Of Royal Descent. I'm sure most of you will love it!




So, that's that. d:


The Wisdom of a Cobbler by Sid Crowe

    *This is also posted on Goodreads and Coffee &  Books.


      This is brilliant. The writing in The Wisdom of a  Cobbler is infused with new lessons and motivational  words in every chapter. It's a light read, yet heavy if  you plan on taking the lessons to heart, which I did.

      Each new character has a lesson to learn, a  different dream to follow, and the way Vernon helps  them go after their dreams is brilliant. He has so much  knowledge and we learn what confidence and belief  can do for us. The best part though, is that it all feels  so real and you can easily put yourself in the  characters' shoes and imagine how such words of  Vernon would affect you had he spoken them to you  instead.

      I recommend this to everyone. Not all will like it, I know that, but this is a piece of art, and everyone should experience it themselves.




So, That's that d:



Rebel Belle by Rachel Hawkins

  *This will also be posted on Goodreads and my  website Books & Coffee.


      Rebel Belle is a tale following seventeen-year-  old Harper Price as she becomes and has to come  to terms with being a Paladin, as well as what her  new status entails. Being a Paladin, she quickly  finds out it is her mission to protect and defend a  thing or person from any and all danger. And in the  process wicked twists are thrown her way, spells  are cast, people are deceived, and yeah, there's  romance, and a whole lot of crazy action.


      I think my favourite part of this novel is that  although romance is a pretty big part of the story,  it's not the main focus. The main focus is how on  earth Harper is going to protect what she needs to  without dying and without hurting too many people.  And also the people who help her and make her  job harder; that's focused on too, of course.


      The pacing is great. Not once did I feel like it was moving to slow or too quickly, and with each twist presented, you were kept hooked the entire time. I only put Rebel Belle down once, and I was almost 200 pages in. And then I was craving more and so I finished in all in one sitting. I mean, who doesn't want to read about a teenaged girl gaining like, superpowers because her school janitor (who's not really a janitor, as it turns out) kisses her while he's on his death bed and transfers some weird power-thing (aka the power of a Paladin) into her body, and then she has to fight and battle and do a whole bunch of wicked stuff in order to protect something/someone? Does that not sound intriguing? I mean, if you don't want to read this book even after hearing that, well obviously it's not your taste, but seriously, I recommend Rebel Belle to everyone.


      That brings me to the characters. Harper is a strong, confident character, and yeah she has flaws and she knows it, but she goes with it. She's kind and tries to help everyone and she's pretty badass. David may actually be my favourite character though, no joke. Bee is pretty cool too, though. She's a great best friend, and I wouldn't mind having someone so supportive. Although at times she did question Harper, and maybe seemed to be less loyal, she still came out on top as loyal as ever. I won't say much more about David, Bee or the other characters, because I don't want to spoil anything. But if you read Rebel Belle and David isn't your favourite character, then Harper or Bee will be.


      Overall, the characters were likeable, maybe even relate-able if you're like Harper and are really invested in your school. The pacing, plot, and writing were amazing. And you should read this book. Because its awesome and not reading this is like missing out on coffee, or cookies, or a seriously great book!



So, that's that d: