Saturday, March 29, 2014

Review: "Hellbound" by Tim Hawken

Feature Friday is a day late, lovebugs!

I got the yucks and was unable to make the post yesterday. I'm feeling much better today!

If you've been keeping up with us the past few weeks you'll know that our FABULOUS Featured Author is Tim Hawken.

So far you've seen:

Spotlight

Giveaway

and today is the Review of "Hellbound" book #1 in Mr. Hawken's Dark Trilogy.

Stick with us for a Character Interview next week, followed by a Review of the second book in this fantastic series! 

Enjoy!


Review

The Hellbound Trilogy #1

Displaying cover-1.jpgHellbound

• Paperback: 228 pages

• Publisher: Dangerous Little Books (November 28, 2010)

• Language: English

• ISBN-10: 0956427634

• ISBN-13: 978-0956427632

Blurb:

Face to face with Satan, Michael has awoken in the bowels of Hell with no memory of who he is, or why he has been damned.

Hell, however, isn’t what he expected. Rather than the fires of torment, he finds a hedonistic city of gambling, sex, murder and revenge.

With the Devil as his guide, Michael embarks on a quest of self-discovery and self-redemption. But will he get a second chance at salvation? And why is Satan helping him?

Hellbound is a contemporary view of Hell, exploring today’s idea of sin and religion, through witty dialogue and bursts of descriptive prose.

Dark, funny and philosophical.


Praise for Hellbound:


“I can’t wait to read the next books in the trilogy.” ***** -AllFantasyWorlds.com

“This book is that rarest of gems – completely original. I don’t think I’ve ever read a book that was quite like this.” **** – Fangsforthefantasy.com

“This book had the power to make me laugh one moment and to be deeply contemplative the next.” **** – BiblioSanctum

“Without a shadow of a doubt, you’re bound to enjoy this tale.” **** ScaryMinds.com

Links for Hellbound






Now this is a work that's going to turn some heads. Imaginative, dark, and truly disturbing. "Hellbound" is modern day myth, reminiscent of those Greek legends of waring Gods, cranky Dark Lords, and an Underworld that isn't all that it seems. It even has an unsuspecting Hero trudging through the depths, facing their demons, and returning to the surface to exact revenge on a Divine Favorite - a Demi-god if you will.

This work is not for the faint of heart, and if you get the squeems easily I'd say... read this book anyway. I'm super squeamish and I was acutely disturbed throughout the majority of the work but the curious philosophy and the new perspective on God, Satan, and all the in-between made the book just too good to put down.

"Hellbound" will make you reconsider your ideas of personal struggle, sin, and the human condition by taking everything you ever thought you could guess about Heaven and Hell and turning it on its head. Supernatural fans will enjoy a fresh perspective on demons, and the cooky representation of some of Hells best-and-brightest will put a smile on your face despite your jittery tummy.  You never know what's coming, and you sure as heck never know who to trust. In a lot of ways the reader finds themselves in the position of Michael, learning about his life one chapter at a time and coming face to face with new decisions and struggles even in the afterlife.

I would warn potential readers that this is not a book for Young Adults. The content is quite racy and would be a solid Rated R. This, however, doesn't take away from the general likeability of the book and I would definitely suggest it to any Horror or Dark Fantasy fan looking for a new favorite.



Giveaway
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a Rafflecopter giveaway



Enjoy!

Until Next Blog,

Read On! 


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Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Spotlight and Excerpt: "The Catcher's Keeper" by JD Spero

Happy Wednesday, booklings!

Auggie-Talk is happy to introduce to you via Enchanted Book Promotions - JD Spero and her Alternate History "Catcher's Keeper".

Enjoy the excerpt and the giveaway at the bottom of the post!


Displaying catcherskeeperbanner.jpg 

The Catcher's Keeper


Displaying CATCHER'S KEEPER - 2500.jpg 

Title: Catcher’s Keeper
Author: Johannah Davies Spero
Genre: Commercial Fiction / Alternate History Fiction
What if Holden Caulfield was around when John Lennon was shot?
In 1980 John Lennon was killed by Mark David Chapman, who believed he was Holden Caulfield, narrator of the classic The Catcher in the Rye. After the shooting, Chapman remained on the scene calmly reading the book, which he later offered to police as “his statement.” Catcher's Keeper asks the question, “What if Holden had met Chapman, learned of his plan, and tried to prevent the assassination?”






Author Bio
Displaying johannah.jpg
Johannah Davies Spero was born near a pristine lake in the Adirondacks and has lived in various cities such as St. Petersburg (Russia), Indianapolis, Dallas, and Boston. She has pursued her love of narrative through degrees in English literature, Russian language, and teaching—and has worked as an actress, a yoga instructor, a web design entrepreneur, a freelance writer, and a high school English teacher. She lives in the Northeast with her husband and three young sons.


Amazon
Goodreads


 Book Excerpt 
Chapter 31
Jerry

Alden’s words nag like Monday morning’s alarm clock: …you stole my journal…published it behind my back. Not only do these words prove I’m an asshole, but now this MD guy knows it. I stare down at the book in my hands, my name screaming off the cover in bold, Times New Roman. On the back cover is a photo of me. I’m leaning against a tree, grinning smugly with my arms folded. You know who I see in that photo? A prick who should get what he deserves, even if it’s delivered by some overzealous fan. I can picture it all unraveling: an image of me flashes on the screen, my hand blocking the camera, the caption scrolling: Who’s the real author?

This fucking book. Measly. Insignificant. And yet—it’s spurred all this bullshit. I should burn every last one of them.

I turn back to the cover to hide my face—from Alden especially.

Alden eyes me through slits. “MD doesn’t care about you. Waste of time.”

I shove the book under my arm. “So, his plan is to…?”

“He’s still zappy for the book. Maybe he doesn’t care how it got published. Fiona’s worried he’s going to leak it to the press. Your plagiarism. But he wouldn’t need my help for that.”

“What would he need your help with?”

Alden shrugs. “The only thing that came up on the train…the only plan we talked about was getting John Lennon’s autograph.”

“What does that have to do with the book?”

His eyes flicker to the map above the doors as the train slows down. “Next stop is ours,” he says.
Like a shot, Alden is on the platform, and then bounds up the stairs two at a time. As soon as we come into daylight, he lights up a cigarette. It hits me: daylight. Damn! I pound the book with my fist and catch up to Alden.

“This isn’t going to work, Alden. It’s the middle of the day.”

He keeps walking. I wave the book in his line of vision.

“Alden, this all takes place at night. In the middle of the night. It makes no sense to go to the Edmont now. The damn Lavender Room won’t even be open.”

He stops, sucks on his cigarette, staring at the traffic. It seems colder here, more windy. I’m shivering, waiting for him. I almost ask him for a cigarette just to warm my hands, but—

“We’re not going to the goddam Edmont.” And he picks up his absurdly fast pace again. I work my stride into a jog, wishing I had a hat. The kind with flaps on the sides to keep my ears warm. I smile inwardly, remembering the kid in the book like he’s an old buddy. I look at Alden weaving his lanky body through the sparse crowd. His hair is an uncombed mop, and his worn jacket falls at the hip of his ripped jeans. He looks like a big kid. But laugh lines are hidden beneath his scruff, and his eyes have a depth and an honesty reserved for Buddhist monks or tribal elders, reminding me what I already know: This kid has been through something. Nothing is more important than protecting him now, my little brother. I have to make things right.

Giveaway

There is a tour-wide giveaway for a signed paperback copy of the book. The giveaway is US/CA only.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Enjoy!

Until Next Blog,

Read On! 


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Monday, March 24, 2014

Review: "If Only" by A.J. Pine

(Note: This post was made pre-layout update. 
The formats may be wonky.)


Displaying Banner.jpg


Displaying 9781622664351_FC.jpgTitle: IF ONLY

Author: A.J. Pine

Publisher: Entangled Embrace

Pub. Date: March 24, 2014

Pages: 342

Find it: Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble

Sometimes it takes crossing an ocean to figure out where you belong.

It's been two years since twenty-year-old Jordan had a boyfriend—which means it's been forever since she, well, you know. But now she’s off to spend her junior year in Aberdeen, Scotland, the perfect place to stop waiting for Mr. Right and just enjoy Mr. Right Now.

Sexy, sweet (and possible player) Griffin may be her perfect, no-strings-attached match. He’s fun, gorgeous, and makes her laugh. So why can’t she stop thinking about Noah who, minutes after being trapped together outside the train’s loo, kisses Jordan like she’s never been kissed before? Never mind his impossible blue eyes, his weathered, annotated copy of The Great Gatsby (total English-major porn)

…oh, and his girlfriend.

Jordan knows everything this year has an expiration date. Aberdeen is supposed to be about fun rather than waiting for life to happen. But E. M. Forster, Shakespeare, and mistletoe on Valentine’s Day make her reconsider what love is and how far she’s willing to go for the right guy.



About A.J.

Displaying Pine4BW-150x150.jpgAJ writes stories to break readers’ hearts, but don’t worry—she’ll mend those hearts with a happily ever after…maybe. The first book she wrote was YA, but now she’s two-timing her first love Pine4BWwith NA. She’s always in the middle of reading two to three books, adores online shopping (everything from groceries to shoes), and she still loves vampires, whether it’s Eric Northman or the Salvatore brothers.

When she’s not writing, AJ is sneaking off to her day job as a high school English teacher or hanging with her husband and kids in the Chicago burbs.

AJ’s debut NA novel, IF ONLY, releases with Entangled’s Embrace line on March 24!



REVIEW
Ok. Confession time. I don't read New Adult very often. It's just not a genre (yet) that I'm in love with. Considering that the majority of it is contemporary (please someone give me some suggestions if I'm totally wrong about that) and that's just not my cup'o'tea.

But dang. "If Only" was the best friend smacking you upside the head. Reading this book was like meeting someone who experienced all the same angst of your college days. If this book were a person we would have talked and laughed all night over a glass (or 5) of wine. I appreciated right away Jordan's conflict and I appreciated even more that she remained true to herself, in many ways, by not just throwing herself into bed with the first guy that offered. Jordan believed in love but, as many 20-somethings girls do, discovered that getting to know a person and learning to trust isn't as easy as Disney makes it out to be.

Jordan is an average girl. In the case of "If Only" this is extremely important because MANY college-aged girls have studied abroad and have experienced that sort of "Anything can happen" mentality, NOT just the super gorgeous, highly flirty, or overly lux. Study abroad can happen to anyone (and should).

I think A.J. Pine captured well the psyche of young college women who find themselves frustrated, tired, and just plain confused when it comes to living life, being true to yourself, and learning to trust others in love. It's difficult. Sometimes it's just a MESS. 

There was certainly some juvenile drama going on throughout, especially between Jordan and the two man-boys she became entangled with during her trip abroad. When I started to get frustrated with how things were progressing towards the "Stop acting like a child" realm, however, I conveniently remembered the structure of my relationships back in my early 20s. Then I just sighed. Flashbacks can be extraordinarily sobering. I don't miss my early 20s.

I believe that A.J. Pine has done an extraordinary job of capturing that sort of turmoil that comes with being a "new" adult, which I think is the entire point of the NA genre. If there were more NA books like this out there then I would definitely be a fan.

Well penned, Ms. Pine!


Enjoy!

Until Next Blog,

Read On! 


POST DIVIDER

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Book Gathering #31

Happy Sunday, darlings!

Another Book Gathering for today. 

Enjoy!






Book Gathering #31



I'm currently participating in two great haul memes hosted by Tynga's Reviews and Books, Biscuits, and Tea.

Please give these two lovely blogs a look see and participate in these great meme adventures!

STSmall







Books
(Images and synopses courtesy of GoodReads)

ARC and Copies
from Publisher
 
 
Hellbound
 
9897716Title: Hellbound

Author: Tim Hawken

Genre: Horror/Fantasy

Publication Date: November 28, 2010

Pages: 228


Synopsis:

"You look very confused when I say I'm just trying to help these lost souls make their way to Heaven," he said. "The reason you're confused is that you think I'm speaking metaphorically. Well, my dear friend, take it very literally. 
 You see, I may have introduced myself as Asmodeus, but let me run off a few of my more well known aliases. Now, let's see, we have Mephistopheles, Beelzebub, Bafomet, Iblis, The Fallen One, Lucifer, The Morning Star, Lord of the Dark, The Devil, oh and my favorite; Satan." Face to face with Satan, Michael has awoken in the bowels of Hell with no memory of who he is, or why he has been damned. Hell, however, isn't what he expected. Rather than the fires of torment, he finds a hedonistic city of gambling, sex, murder and revenge. 
With the Devil as his guide, Michael embarks on a quest of self-discovery and self redemption. But will he get a second chance at salvation? And why is Satan helping him? Hellbound is a contemporary view of Hell, exploring today's idea of sin and religion, through witty dialogue and bursts of descriptive prose. Dark, funny and philosophical.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery





 
Rebecca
 
17899948Title: Rebecca

Author: Daphne Du Maurier

Genre: Classics

Publication Date: 1938

Pages: 448


Synopsis:

The novel begins in Monte Carlo, where our heroine is swept off her feet by the dashing widower Maxim de Winter and his sudden proposal of marriage. Orphaned and working as a lady's maid, she can barely believe her luck. It is only when they arrive at his massive country estate that she realizes how large a shadow his late wife will cast over their lives--presenting her with a lingering evil that threatens to destroy their marriage from beyond the grave.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery



 
Jane's Melody
 
18632103Title: Jane's Melody

Author: Ryan Winfield

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Publication Date: October 7, 2013

Pages: 336


Synopsis:


What boundaries would you cross for true love?

That's the question a grieving mother must answer when she takes in a young street musician she believes can shed light on her daughter's death—only to find herself falling for him. A sexy but touching love story that will leave you both tantalized and in tears, Jane's Melody follows a forty-year-old woman on a romantic journey of rediscovery after years of struggling alone.

Sometimes our greatest gifts come from our greatest pain. And now Jane must decide if it's too late for her to start over, or if true love really knows no limits.


buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery


 
If Only
 
20798976Title: If Only

Author: A.J. Pine

Genre: New Adult Romance

Publication Date: March 24, 2014

Pages: 342


Synopsis:

Sometimes it takes crossing an ocean to figure out where you belong.


It's been two years since twenty-year-old Jordan had a boyfriend—which means it's been forever since she, well, you know. But now she’s off to spend her junior year in Aberdeen, Scotland, the perfect place to stop waiting for Mr. Right and just enjoy Mr. Right Now.

Sexy, sweet (and possible player) Griffin may be her perfect, no-strings-attached match. He’s fun, gorgeous, and makes her laugh. So why can’t she stop thinking about Noah who, minutes after being trapped together outside the train’s loo, kisses Jordan like she’s never been kissed before? Never mind his impossible blue eyes, his weathered, annotated copy of The Great Gatsby (total English-major porn)…oh, and his girlfriend.

Jordan knows everything this year has an expiration date. Aberdeen is supposed to be about fun rather than waiting for life to happen. But E. M. Forster, Shakespeare, and mistletoe on Valentine’s Day make her reconsider what love is and how far she’s willing to go for the right guy.


 
The Starlight Club
 
18695122Title: The Starlight Club

Author: Joe Corso

Genre: Crime

Publication Date: September 9, 2012

Pages: 297


Synopsis:

CAUTION: THE NAMES HAVE NOT BEEN CHANGED TO PROTECT THE GUILTY 
The Starlight Club was jumping... "They looked like mob guys. They had that arrogance exuded by those who liked to intimidate - those who were the proud purveyors of fear." Amidst the nightly gaiety was the back room, where business deals were made, hits were ordered, and territories were divided. Trenchie, not being a "rat" is just released from his ten-year prison sentence. A new life is waiting - complete with envelopes of money and a steak house to call his own. He finds the woman of his dreams who brings along ex-husband baggage. 
Hit man Jimmy The Hat finds unexpected fame and fortune in Hollywood, yet always stays true to the "boys", especially Trenchie. His loyalty costs him his life. "Crazy Joey Gallo" and his brothers break away from the Profaci family and go "rogue, on their own now. They split their gang into several small groups and spread them out over the five boroughs." Harsh punishment awaits those who talk. "The colt 45 caliber bullet did its deed, taking with it a sizable portion of Rag's brain, forming a pink mist, mixed with bone and grey matter that puffed in front of Rag's head like a small mushroom, deflating when it met the chilly evening air. The current would soon carry his body at least a mile away."

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery


Purchase
 
Scary Mary
 
9475805Title: Scary Mary

Author: S.A. Hunter

Genre: YA Paranormal

Publication Date: April 18, 2010

Pages: 144

Synopsis:

Mary just wants to be left alone, but the cheerleaders, jocks, guidance counselors, and ghosts won't stop harrassing her. When a new boy starts school, he surprises Mary by befriending her. That's a rare thing for the school freak, but her unusual abilities put a rift in their budding friendship when Mary has to tell Shy that his home is haunted and not by Casper, the friendly ghost. Mary has to get rid of the ghost, thwart the school bully, do her homework, and not get detention. Mary's sure she can do all of that except for the last part.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery





Enjoy!

Until Next Blog,

Read On! 

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