Happy Weekend!

I am so looking forward to this weekend. I’ve been sick for what feels like ages and I’m *finally* feeling better, so I am hoping to get out of the house this weekend. I’m planning to go to the library and claim some of my prizes from the summer reading program and turn in my overdue books. Then I’m taking my husband out for a treat on Saturday. Sunday I might go visit my sister and Monday is a holiday here in Utah so we are planning a picnic or something.

Then I have a few reviews to post. I just finished Conspiracy by Lindsay Buroker. I also have two books by Robin Hobb that I haven’t reviewed, but I don’t even know where to begin! So many feels! I downloaded the 3rd in the trilogy, but I might not start it until Sunday or else I’d just stay indoors all day and read. (And that would be bad because….)

Hope you have a good weekend and happy reading!

A Little Time Travel

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Galveston, Texas 1900

Title: September Sky

Author: John A. Heldt

Setting: Modern San Francisco and Galveston, Texas 1900

Disclaimer: I received this book free from the author in exchange for an honest review. The opinions expressed are my own.

If you had the chance to go back in time, would you do it? I know I would do it, as long as I could come back to the present day. Would I bring my kids? I mean, they’re adults, but still, I don’t know that I’m comfortable with them taking the same risks I would take myself.

Chuck Townsend and his son Justin get a chance to travel back in time to 1900. Both are at loose ends, looking for new experiences, and what could be more exciting than visiting the past? How about catching a murderer, falling in love, and getting caught in a hurricane? Sounds like this book would be really exciting.

But for some reason, I found it rather boring. There was so much dialogue about so many trivial things. Then the author skipped back and forth between POV so often than I never connected to any of the characters.

I want to end on a positive note, so I will say that I was impressed by the amount of research that the author did into the Galveston hurricane. It was truly a horrible catastrophe, and I think the author really captured what it must have been like.

Thanks for the chance to read this one. I know that the reviews have been pretty positive, so maybe I’ll try something else by this author later.

 

More Clues!

I’m surprised there were no guesses after my first set of clues. I guess I made them too hard. Let’s try again. Remember, this is for a giveaway I’m doing in August for a signed copy of a new release book.

Clue #4. The author has sold the movie rights to one series to Disney. (Yay! I hope?)

Clue #5. The author attended my alma mater and studied the same major as me. Weird, right?

Clue #6. She will be appearing at SDCC this year.

Final Clue:

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The previous three clues are listed below. Again, I will not confirm or deny your guesses, but I will make the announcement after next week when I go to the signing. I’m so excited! I haven’t been feeling great, so here’s hoping that I am totally recovered by then, because I totally don’t want to miss this book launch. It’s practically next door (not really, but kinda!) and I really want to be there! So come on and guess this time!

Creepy YA Horror!

Title: Quinsey Wolfe’s Glass Vault, Book 1

Author: Candace Robinson

Setting: Texas, present day and inside the vault

Deer Park, Texas isn’t unusual, except for two things – people have been disappearing, and there’s a new museum in town. Perrie Madeline doesn’t think the two are connected until her cousin gets a job at the new museum and never comes home. Then her ex-boyfriend goes missing. Perrie decides if the police can’t put a stop to this, she’s going to look for them. Only her new friend August believes her, and pretty soon, the two of them are trapped inside the vault.

I got this book for free from the author, which was extremely nice, because I hosted the  Mega Blitz Launch Party Giveaways. I was intrigued by the story and wanted to read more, but also, I admit it, I was mesmerized by that cover. Can you blame me? It’s really something! As you might guess, this has got elements from several fairy tales or folk tales in here. There’s Snow White, Rapunzel, Three Billy Goats Gruff, and then Jack the Ripper. It’s creepy and violent, not your typical YA retelling. Those are generally sweet Happily Every After type story. This is really, really not.

I did enjoy this book, and I give Robinson credit for embracing the horror element. I mean, she didn’t tiptoe around it. The ending is bloody, that’s for sure. But I think in the end, it wasn’t really a good fit for me. For that reason, I’m not going to rate it. I admire her; I think she took some risks with this book and I hope they pay off for her. If you’re into horror, give this one a try. It’s something different and I hope you like it.

Lockdown by Laurie R. King

TRIGGER WARNING: GUN VIOLENCE

Title: Lockdown

Author: Laurie R. King

Setting: Guadalupe Middle School, somewhere in California, present day

ARC received for review

It’s a typical day at Guadalupe Middle School. Well, except that it’s Career Day. But just like any day, it starts with kids and teachers, principal and guest speakers, all preparing for a day of school. There’s nothing special, nothing out of the ordinary to mark this as the day when several lives will change forever. It’s just Career Day.

But what everyone – Coach, Principal Linda, Officer Olivia, students Brendan and Esme and Chaco and Mina – don’t know is that a strange set of circumstances will convince a desperate man to take a desperate action.

I’ve read several of Laurie R. King’s book before. I love her Sherlock Holmes/Mary Russell series, but I’ve never read any of her stand alone titles. I was intrigued by this one, but then when I got it, I was beginning to have second thoughts. First of all, it’s a really big book. And second, a school shooting? Did I really want to read about that?

Um, no. Not really. But I had already agreed to review the book. So I decided to at least give it a fair try.

It was hard at first. I kept reading little bits here and there, maybe because I was waiting for the shooting to start. I’d flip forward and say, “Nope, everyone’s fine,” and quit reading. But I kept with it. She changes POVs between lots of different characters. I didn’t have any trouble keeping them straight, but the chapters were so short it made it harder to get drawn into the book. Finally around page 200! I was really into the story.

It took me that long to realize that this book is not really about a school shooting. It’s about all the things that lead up to it, about all the people involved, all the lives that are touched, all the ways things could go differently, and everything that prepares us to be ready for when the real moment, the moment that matters comes.

In the end, I liked this one much more than I thought I would at first. The more I think about it, the more I would recommend it. But only if you are prepared for the suspense and the subject. If it’s too upsetting for you, then definitely don’t read this one. 4 /5 stars

 

 

Giveaway Sneak Peak

I’ve mentioned a couple of times that I’m planning to give away a SIGNED COPY
of a new release here on my blog next month. I will be going to the release party to get the book and get it signed by the author. But first, I thought I’d do a little teaser about the book to keep you guessing.

Clue #1: The Genre is Fantasy/Folk Tale.

Clue #2: The author is from Utah.

Clue #3: The author has already written several exciting books.

Final Clue:
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If you have guessed the book (or the author), you can say so in the comments, but I will neither confirm nor deny anything until it gets a little closer to the signing. In other words, guess away!

Rejected!

images (1)I got another rejected letter for my flash fiction story. I think I am going to publish it here, but I want to bring it to one more critique group first. And then I’m going to share it, because writing was meant to be read! I’d rather get paid, but that may take a while. In the mean time, I’d like to at least get some feedback. I can’t improve my writing if no one is reading it. It’s such a struggle! I know a lot of my regular readers are also aspiring writers, so I know you’ll totally understand where I’m coming from.