Stephanie's books

Clockwork Angel
City of Bones
The Fellowship of the Ring
The Golden Compass
Night World, No. 2
Thirst No. 2: Phantom, Evil Thirst, and Creatures of Forever
Thirst No. 3: The Eternal Dawn
The Iron Daughter
The Iron King
A Discovery of Witches
A Great and Terrible Beauty
The Hunger Games
The Host
City of Glass
Memoirs of a Geisha
The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo

Stephanie's favorite books »

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Blog Tour Review- Destined (Destined 1)

Title: Destined
Author: Jenna Pizzi
Series: Destined book 1
Rating: 3.5 /5
Lilly has always been plagued by dreams; she dreams of another place and time, a place of pure beauty and light that suddenly erupts into fire and destruction. 

Then, there is a man with the haunting blue eyes that seem to look through to her very soul. In one fateful afternoon Lilly learns that the dreams are more real than she could have ever imagined. They are a link to who she really is; the Gatekeeper to the realms. Born from both light and dark, with her memories bound, she learns that it is her destiny to gather the relics of the flower of life. Lilly must do this in order to close the gates before the under realm destroys them all, but there are those who will stop at nothing to keep her from fulfilling her destiny. 

There are those who will try to sway her into the dark. She is torn between the love of two brothers; one, her loyal warrior, who has loved her since the beginning, and the other with the enthralling blue eyes that speak to her soul. One brother fights for the light, while the other fell into the darkness. Will she choose the brother that her soul longs for, or the brother that her heart calls out 

My Review
 I received this book free from the author in exchange for an honest review.
 When I first started reading this book I was drawn in by the mystery of it all, and the concept was really cool. I feel like I have read a lot of books about the end of the world and the fight of good vs evil and I don't want to fault the author for that cause that really isn't her fault and I will say this story had a different spin to it and a few things that set it apart. The pace started off good and I was trucking along but after a while it hit a bit of a wall for me, I think the biggest thing was Lily and all her suitors, I mean I get that she has had past lives and it creates a history but it made for a lot of complaining and hurt feelings all around and I got a little annoyed with the whole thing.
I liked how the battle of good and evil was not just fought on a global scale but Lily also fought an internal battle to prove she was good. Seth was by far my favorite I always have a soft spot for the guardian/warrior and Samil made me very very suspicious. It was nice to see Lily had such a great support group around her and I was NOT happy with her decision...never go off alone I have read enough books to know that it never ends well.
 Overall   this was a good book but it had something missing for me and like I said a bit to much love drama. The concept was neat and I am curious about what could be next. The ending was very mysterious and leaves the reader wondering.

Author Bio:
Born and raised in Massachusetts, Jenna settled into America's hometown where she proudly calls home with her family. She is an avid book reader and collector with an entire room dedicated to her passion. At the age of twelve years old Jenna began writing, determined to be just like Stephen King or Dean Koontz.
For her it all starts with the flick of an image. From there a story is born. Being an eternal romantic, Jenna is a true believer in happy endings. It's the rest of the story that anything is possible. Writing is her passion. It is something that helps her unwind at the end of the day. She likes to tell stories that will pull at your heartstrings, or simply whisk you away even for just a little while. So grab your favorite blanket, and a hot cup of coffee and settle in for the ride.


Twitter: @jaderayne

Sunday, 21 July 2013

Review-Center Of The Universe (Twelfth Keeper 2)

Title: Center of the Universe
Author: Belle Malory
Series: Twelfth Keeper book 2
Rating: 5/5

End of the world?


Taking a vacation wasn't what Kennedy Mitchell had in mind after aliens threatened to attack Earth. Although she’s happy spending time with her family, she begins to question DOE’s motives for sending her home when she should be training. Something’s up and she knows it.

Searching for answers, she turns to Phoenix, the one person she can trust…or so she thought. It seems even he has secrets, and the more she discovers, the more she wonders if anything they had together was real.

The stakes are higher than they've ever been. One keeper goes missing. Another is determined to destroy her. As if that isn't enough to deal with, everyday humans get closer to annihilation. This time Kennedy has no one to rely on but herself.

Hey, no one said keeping the world safe was easy.

My Review
 I received this book free form the author in exchange for an honest review.
After reading book one and falling in love I was over the moon when I was asked to read book two, and I was not disappointed and actually I loved this one more if that was even possible. I found this book to be an exciting ride, with an amazing ability to be relate able in a world of the future awaiting alien attack. I love Belle Malory's writing she makes me feel like I am right there and the dialog is very real, I feel the same things these characters do and it's so easy to lose myself in the vivid movie playing in my head.
Kennedy was stronger and more determined making me like her even more than I already did. Finally accepting her place as a keeper was great for her character and the story it seemed to give her more purpose and understanding, and to me it changed many of her relationships both for the good and the bad (but you have to read to find out why hahaha).  Sometimes I wanted to shake her and tell her to snap out of it when it came to Phoenix, but I also understood her reasons and found myself wanting to hug her and eat ice cream. Phoenix, what can I say about him *Sigh* hit, gorgeous, strong and a control of fire need I say more oh wait lets not forget the sexy accent I hear in my head every time he speaks. Watching him fight for Kennedy was the best and I will think about waking up to him cooking waffles for a long time, I don't even care if they are gross as long as he is shirtless :)
It was nice to see some of the keepers travel around, getting a change of scenery was cool. In book one most of it took place on Olympus and that's not a bad thing, I think Olympus is cool but I like earth too, and Kennedy going home added some drama and even some mended fences .
My only beef was with the ending, now don't get me wrong it was awesome, full of adventure and heroics but that cliffhanger Belle how could you do that to me lol I was so sad to see I had reached the end and I was so sad that it left me longing for so much more.  I am so pumped for book 3 and I hope and pray I don't have to wait to long. Thank you again to the wonderful author for letting me be a part of this wonderful series. Everyone get a copy now!!!! you wont regret it.

"I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of the stars make me dream."
Vincent Van gouh
About the Author

I don't consider myself a writer. I'm a storyteller.

My two great loves are books and coffee. If it weren't for books, my heart wouldn't feel as full. And if it weren't for coffee, I wouldn't know what mornings are. That being said, the guy at Starbucks knows me well. He sings to me sometimes.

I live in Orlando, Florida with my family and two rescue mutts. Their personalities are like night and day. One is gold. The other is black. The gold one doesn't like to sleep in. Before I've had my coffee, we are enemies.

You can visit me at I love hearing from readers!

Thursday, 18 July 2013

Blog Tour Review- Branded (Sinners 1)

Title- Branded
Author- Abi Ketner and Missy Kalicicki
Series- Sinners series book 1
Blog Tour Host- Lady Amber's Reviews
Rating- 5/5
Twenty years ago the Commander came into power and murdered all who opposed him. In his warped mind, the seven deadly sins were the downfall of society. He created the Hole where sinners are branded according to their sins and might survive a few years. At best. 
Now LUST wraps around my neck like blue fingers strangling me. I've been accused of a crime I didn't commit and now the Hole is my new home. 
Darkness. Death. Violence. Pain. 
Now every day is a fight for survival. But I won’t die. I won’t let them win.
The Hole can’t keep me. The Hole can’t break me. 
I am more than my brand. I’m a fighter. 
My name is Lexi Hamilton, and this is my story.

My Review
 I received this book free from the authors in exchange for and honest review.
"You can overcome anything... short of death"
Wow was all I could really say after I finished this book, just wow, what a ride this book took me on.  There was so much emotion both good and bad in this story, I stopped reading on several occasions just so I sould have a moment to collect myself. 
Lexi held my attention right from the get go she had a strong sense of purpose and was smart enough to pick her battles. I loved how she was a strong person but like any human being she had her moments of defeat like we all would if faced with the terrors she endured over her like in high society and then the hole, I think it made her very relate able and believable. And as if it wasn't enough to have one great character we are introduced to Cole, oh god how I wish he were real, a strong, determined, and might I add gorgeous guard hell bent on duty until Lexi helps him realize the true horror's of the hole. I always knew he had a soft spot, how a man treats his dog is a good tell, but I loved seeing it slowly come to the surface yet the strong man always remained. Did I mention I wish he was real I really really want to meet him and not gonna lie touch the image that was so vividly created I have officially found the man that will haunt my dreams.  The best character for me was Zeus, as a huge dog lover I was so glad to see that he was such a big part of the story, he reminded me of my dog loyal and loving and although I have never had to find out I like to think he would also protect me the way Zeus did for Lexi and Cole. He was a constant for them and a reminder of true friendship and loyalty.
I loved how complex this story was with the range of emotions and the slow trickle of realization. The book made me feel sadness and hope all at the same time and it is my opinion that this was due to great writing.
"Unbelievable that I've found more depth here than I ever have before. The emotional peaks and valleys exhaust me, but my heart feels content, and it doesn't make sense to me."
 I constantly felt like I was right in the middle of it all, especially the last bit when things got very complex and exciting... a reunion, a war, and a few lies revealed. I can't wait to see what happens next I want more I want answers and I want to live in this world again. If you like dytopian and good writing you will love this book, I highly recommend this book to anyone and everyone. 

Author Bios:
Abi Ketner Is a registered nurse with a passion for novels, the beaches of St. John, and her Philadelphia Phillies. A talented singer, Abi loves to go running and spend lots of time with her family. She currently resides in Lancaster, Pennsylvania with her husband, triplet daughters and two very spoiled dogs.

Melissa Kalicicki received her bachelor’s degree from Millersville University in 2003. She married, had two boys and currently lives in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Aside from reading and writing, her interests include running and mixed martial arts. She also remains an avid Cleveland sports fan.

Abi and Missy met in the summer of 1999 at college orientation and have been best friends ever since. After college, they added jobs, husbands and kids to their lives, but they still found time for their friendship. Instead of hanging out on weekends, they went to dinner once a month and reviewed books. What started out as an enjoyable hobby has now become an incredible adventure.

website and blog

Sunday, 7 July 2013

Blog Tour Review-Our Souls To Keep

Title: Our Souls To Keep
Author: Gary Caruso
Genre: dark YA paranormal romantic thriller, 15+
Rating: 3.5 /5
Tour Host: Lady Amber's Tours
 After seventeen-year-old Wake Reynolds agrees to trade his life to prevent the damaged soul of his suicidal mother from the fiery tortures of Hell, Satan strips him of his humanity and forces him to become a demonic collector of souls. With no memory of his human existence, Wake preys on defenseless teenagers until they willingly end their own lives.

After many years of loyal service, something inside Wake is changing. Images of a forgotten life, lost human emotions begin to emerge. As Wake struggles to keep these new sensations hidden, Satan orders him to corrupt the soul of a pregnant girl, Annemarie. Beautiful, gentle Annemarie. From the moment Wake sees her, she brings lightness to his blackened heart. If he chooses to defy Satan and spare the lives of Annemarie and her unborn child, his mother’s soul will writhe in Hell’s deepest pit for eternity. Annemarie or his mother? It’s a choice no one should have to make.

My Review
 I received this book free from the author in exchange for an honest review.
I really struggled with my rating for this one I just had so many mixed feelings about it that I was not really sure I will say that over all I enjoyed it and I would recommend this book to lovers of the genre. I am a fan of the concept of daemons and hunters and the war between heaven and hell and since I have read many I was surprised to get the daemon point of view that was new for me and I did like it. I also don't read many books with a male point of view and I found that it was not bad at all lol.
I was sucked in to the story quickly, a half breed daemon working with satan to save his Mothers soul, and a pregnant girl whose baby is the key in the war. I found it a little slow in some parts but that's not to say that it did not have it's excitement and when the hunter showed up I had high hopes, but his story was short lived which saddened me in more ways than one. 
I do love hunters!!
 I found myself conflicted with Wake, I mean my heart broke for him for sure, but at the same time he made a choice long ago and he has done many terrible things, and yes I know cause he was forced by the devil but there is were the conflict lies, should he be forgiven? had he earned forgiveness based on a few good deeds? I admired how hard he fought for the ones he cared about, but I don't think I ever really loved his character.
"Nevin was right. Everyone in my life dies."
The ending was definatley not what I expected and I am still unsure how I feel about it. One thing for sure it left me curious and I would like to know what happens to these characters. I know they are important and I hope there is more.

About The Author
Gary Caruso lives in northern Virginia with his wife Jill, but their favorite place is in Ohio with their three beautiful grandchildren. Although Gary is exhilarated when he sits down to write, teaching middle school science is his first love. He’s passionate about empowering students to make thoughtful decisions and positive choices in life. Gary enjoys reading, especially fiction that blurs the line between what’s real and what’s fantasy. He never imagined becoming a writer until an ordinary car ride on a spring day jolted an unlikely thought into his head. Gary’s early experience writing is a reminder that no matter how intimidating the challenge, action and determination are the foundations for fulfilling any dream. Gary has an insatiable love for writing, a blessing he’s excited to share with his readers.


The crowd thins, eventually leaving Annemarie and me alone in the hallway. She gathers her books and turns, quicker than I expect. I can’t maneuver out of her way. Our collision is mild, but jarring enough to dislodge the books from her hands.
“I’m so sorry,” she says as she kneels to pick up her scattered books.
I should be helping her, but my eyes are fixed on her graceful movements. Her long brown hair has fallen to the side, exposing the back of her softly curved neck, and every reach for a stray book lengthens her back and shoulders, inviting my touch. From the lowest point, just above the waist of her jeans, the tip of my finger would snake upward, navigating the gentle ridge of her spine until my hand laces through the richness of her flowing hair.
She tilts her head upward and grins at me. “Are you okay?”
Her voice snaps me from my fantasy. “Me? Yeah, I’m…fine. Oh, god. I’m so sorry. I should be picking up your books. You’re…you know.” I point feeble-mindedly at her extended stomach.
“Pregnant,” she says as she stands and straightens her blouse. “It’s all right to say it. I already know.”
The tip of her tongue unknowingly caresses her lower lip and the gentle arc of her full upper lip stretches, the smallest amount, as a smile slowly radiates across her flushed cheeks. These emotions, human, raw and…hormonal, forgotten for so long, now my only hope for clear thought is to suppress them. This has to be one of Satan’s sadistic jokes.
I laugh from embarrassment, but it’s the first time, in too long, that the sound of untempered, unrestrained joy bubbles from my heart. How can she have this warming effect on me? I want to say something cute and funny, but my mind is a hornet’s nest of scrambled thoughts.
“You look familiar,” she says. “Do we have a class together?”
I gaze into her hazel eyes. I must appear flustered because she tilts her head and grins.
“No. I mean, I don’t know. Today is my first day at this school.”
“Great. Welcome to Roosevelt High School. My name is Annemarie.”
“I’m Wake.”
“Wake? That’s an interesting name.”
“Yeah, I know. It sounds like a funeral.”
“I like it. But I have to go. My little guy keeps pushing on my bladder. Lately, I have to use the restroom between every class.” She covers her mouth as if she gave too much information to someone she just met, but her joyful eyes can’t hide the smile hidden behind her hand.
“I can’t believe I just told you that.” She starts to hurry away, but looks over her shoulder. “See you later, Wake.”
I wave like an embarrassed adolescent. What a lousy first impression. I sounded like a bumbling, immature little boy.
I watch as she continues down the hall. I’ve seen other pregnant women before. They were clumsy, out of balance from carrying extra weight in front. But not Annemarie. Her steps are graceful and refined, like she’s gliding on a frozen pond. The gentle curves of her hips have remained slender, and sway hypnotically side-to-side in a rhythm that matches the drumming of my heart.
What am I thinking? Mooning about like a lovesick teenager. I can’t let my physical attraction for Annemarie erode the resolve I’ll need to complete this assignment. Yet, she’s the most beautiful… Does she even know how she makes me feel…how human? I’m stuck in a moment reserved for young love. There’s nothing merciful about denying the uninhibited excitement coursing through every inch of my body, but my plan is already in motion. The fate of my mother’s soul is in my hands. As much as I hate myself for thinking it, Annemarie’s beauty has to be extinguished. I have to collect her. I know Satan is convinced these human emotions will help, but right now, I wish I was a stone-cold demon. It would make it a lot easier to incinerate her goodness from the earth.