Friday, February 15, 2019

AUDIO BOOK REVIEW: HER DARKEST NIGHTMARE by BRENDA NOVAK @Brenda_Novak NARRATED by THERESE PLUMMER @tplummer76 #RomanticSuspense






Title: Her Darkest Nightmare
Narrator(s)Therese Plummer
Publisher: Macmillan Audio
Source: Purchased
Format: Audio Book/Paperback
Release Date: September 29, 2016
Length :  13 hrs 1 mins
Reading Challenges: 2019 Audio Book Challenge
Purchase:  AudibleAmazon


Tuesday, February 12, 2019

RELEASE DAY BLITZ and REVIEW TOUR : LUCK OF THE DEVIL by MEGHAN MARCH





Title : Luck of the Devil
Author: Meghan March
Publisher: Red Dress Press
Published : February 12, 2019
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 238
Format: eArc
Source: Author 
Reading Challenges: 2019 New Release Challenge, COYER Winter

BUY: iBooks | Amazon US Kobo | BN



Monday, February 11, 2019

CHARACTER INTERVIEW: ZAFTAN TROUBLES by HANK QUENSE @hanque99


SYNOPSIS


This novel takes place in a fantasy country that has reached the early Industrial Age of technology and recently instituted a democratic government.

An alien space ship arrives over the planet. The ship is owned by a mining corporation and searches for exotic mineral deposits to mine and bring back to its home planet, Zaftan 31B where rare elements are extracted from the minerals and sold.

The two main characters are MACDRAKIN GEMSEEKER, a dwarf miner and LESLIE HIGGINBOTTOM, a half-dwarf, half human constable in the small town of Skensfirth where the two have a budding romance. The alien captain, YUNTA, orders her second-in-command, SHTAP, to negotiate an agreement with the president of the country, ALBERT WEBLEY, a human. Webley agrees to allow the aliens to mine the minerals if they can find them, provided the aliens respect property rights and don't harm folks.

Yunta faces a time limit, the ship's supply situation dictates they start the return voyage in less than two weeks, and has no intention of slowing down the exploration and mining to protect property. Explorations are carried out by robots who cause considerable damage to property as they follow their search programs. MacDrakin destroys a robot when it trespasses on his land. After a few other robots are destroyed, Shtap demands that Webley take steps to protect the expensive robots and Higginbottom gets a telegram to that effect. Upset that she must protect the robots rather than the property, she learns that MacDrakin has destroyed yet another robot. Despite their mutual attraction, the alien presence and the telegrams are straining their relationship. The strain becomes acute when MacDrakin declares war on the aliens and Higginbottom gets another telegram ordering her to arrest anyone who damages or destroys a robot. Meanwhile Webley's staff get reports the folks in Skensfirth are on the verge of revolt.

The robots discover two major mineral deposits. One is on MacDrakin's land, the other is beneath the town of Skensfirth. On their first attempt to mine MacDrakin's land, he and several hunter friends destroy all the robots who operate the mining machinery. Yunta, with the deadline approaching, is outraged by the truculent natives and sends reinforcements to get the mining operation back on track. Faced with more aliens, MacDrakin abandons his land and sets out to prevent the aliens from entering Skensfirth. A group of retired dwarf solders answer his call and join him. He is also joined by several government officials sent by Webley to solve the Skensfirth problems.

In the ensuing battle, the aliens are thwarted by weather problems, mutinous crew members and the MacDrakin's determination. After many machines are destroyed, Shtap, the alien commander of the ground operation, calls for a truce and tells Drakin that he admits defeat and that the aliens will leave. The aliens abandon the remaining mining machines, damaged robots, weapons and a damaged cargo pod. Engineers and scientists are ordered to examine these artifacts and decipher their secrets.

With the departure of the aliens, the reason for Higginbottom's and MacDrakin's feud disappears and they resume their romantic interest.




INTERVIEW
In this exclusive interview, Faux News Network’s reporter Sandra Elfenheimer talks with Albert Webley, the President of Gundarland and a major character in the sci-fi series Zaftan Troubles.


Sandra Elfenheimer: President Webley, you’ve been elected to many offices.  What was your first election victory?

Albert Webley: Kindergarten.  I was elected class president.  I ran on a platform calling for longer nap periods.

SE: You were the President when the Zaftans first made contact with Gundarland.  What was your initial reaction when you heard about it?

AW: Fear. Lots of fear.

SE: Why fear?

AW: The first I heard about the aliens was one of them showed up in my office.  It just popped up out of thin air.  Didn’t even have the curtesy to use  the door and knock first.  They are huge. They are ugly and they stink.  But my fear soon changed to annoyance.

SE: How so?

AW: I became annoyed when I realized the cretin was interfering with one of my four daily naps.  It’s part of their arrogance.  They think they are so superior they don’t have consider someone else’s schedule.

SE: How difficult was it to negotiate with the Zaftans?

AW:  I don’t recall any real negotiating.  They showed up, told us what they planned to do and went ahead and did it.

SE: You just let them go ahead and do what they wanted?

AW: That’s pretty much how it went.  My advisers claimed the Zaftans were so technologically advanced we couldn’t do anything to stop them.  I have to say I wasn’t impressed with their technology.

SE: Really?  Why not? 
AW: The Zaftan always showed up at nap time.  It was obvious to me that they hadn’t invented appointment calendars yet.  So how advanced can they be?

SE: In the face of this changing world, how difficult was it to make decisions?

AW: I pride myself on my ability to not make a decision.  I didn’t make a single decision for my entire first term as President.  You see, whenever you make a decision you annoy some of the voters and that’s not a good idea.  So I avoid decisions.  I leave them to my advisers.

SE: Well that’s a different approach.  Who were these advisers? 

AW: My assistant and the Secretary of the Treasury are very good at making decisions to steer my administration.  War and Interior, not so much.

SE: Tell us about these last two.

AW: The Minister of War and the Secretary of the Interior hate each other and spend all their time and budgets engaging in guerrilla warfare. They both have very little time and money left to run their departments.  Unfortunately, both saw the Zaftan’s arrival as an opportunity to gain power at the expense of the other.

SE: Why didn’t you get rid of them? 

AW: That would require making a decision, you see.  Then I’d have to make more decisions to find and appoint replacements.  No, it’s easier to just let them be.  Besides, some of their antics are quite amusing to watch.

SE: Let’s talk about the damage the Zaftans did to the area where they mined for minerals.

AW: I’d love to continue this interview but it’s coming up on time for my next nap and you aren’t a Zaftan, so I’ll have to break this off.

SE: There you have it: an interview with one of the participants in the greatest event in Gundarland’s history



The Zaftan Troubles series of ebooks is available at:

Smashwords



ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Hank Quense writes satirical fantasy and scifi. Early in his writing career, he was strongly influenced by two authors: Douglas Adams and his Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy and Joesph Heller’s Catch-22. Happily, Hank has never quite recovered from those experiences.
He lives with his wife in northern New Jersey, a mere 20 miles from Manhattan, the center of the galaxy (according to those who live in Manhattan). They have two daughters and five grandchildren all of whom live nearby.
For vacations, Hank and Pat usually visit distant parts of the galaxy.  Occasionally, they also time-travel.
Besides writing novels, Hank lectures on fiction writing, publishing and book marketing. He is most proud of his talk showing grammar school kids how to create a short story. He used these lectures to create an advanced ebook with embedded videos to coach the students on how to create characters, plots and setting.  The target audience is 4th to 7th graders.  The book's title is Fiction Writing Workshop for Kids. It’s available at: https://amzn.to/2RnU5Yo


Purchase Links:
Amazon
BARNES and NOBLE
iBooks
KOBO
 Smashwords

Social Media Links:
Facebook
Twitter
:LinkedIn
Youtube Channel

Thursday, February 07, 2019

BOOK REVIEW: DARK WINE AT MIDNIGHT by JENNA BARWIN @JennaBarwin #UrbanFantasy





Title : Dark Wine at Midnight
Author: Jenna Barwin
Series: A Hill Vampire #1
Publisher: Hidden Depths Publishing
Published : April 25, 2017
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 419
Format: ebook
Source: Gifted
Reading Challenges:  COYER Winter
Purchase: Amazon



Dark Wine at Midnight by Jenna Barwin is the first book in the Hill Vampire series. This being the author’s debut novel I had no idea what to expect in terms of delivery. The synopsis, however promised danger, seduction and suspense and it was this promise that drove my decision to pick up this book. In the end, I am glad I did.

Dr. Cerissa Patel was recruited by the Lux to go undercover in the vampire community as it was rumored that a rogue vampire group has emerged and is a threat to humankind. Her job was to uncover the mastermind behind the group and the plans that were afoot.  

She is not keen on the assignment, but the compensation would be worth it as it would mean becoming an envoy for the vampires and in return, her dream of owning her own lab would come to fruition. Cerissa will discover, however that her task would not be an easy one.

She had her work cut out for her. The residents of the Hill did not trust her and it did not help she was an unmated mortal. To top it all, she fell for one of the founders, Henry Bautista. 

Henry is a Vampire and wine maker and he was not keen on Cerissa being on the Hill. He believes she will be a distraction, which he confirmed when he realised he was attracted to her. An attraction he could not shake no matter how he tried. Haunted by his past and burdened with guilt as a result he feels he is not deserving of love. 

I enjoyed the mystery element. Someone wanted Henry and another founding vampire dead.  The suspect pool was small and identifying the villain was not that simple. I managed to figure it out before its revelation.

The characters needed some more development. Descriptions of the major players’ backgrounds were lacking. It would have been nice to have more information on Cerissa’s heritage and that of the other major players. I would love to have more insight about the Lux. What made them different from humans and what abilities they possessed?  I love the racial diversity featured in the story. 

I believe this is a great start to what appears to be a fantastic Urban Fantasy series. The unique plot and world building pulled me in and held me captive from start to finish. The pacing was ok mostly as there were parts of the story that dragged, but this did not disrupt my enjoyment.

The story ended without a resolution to the reason Cerissa went undercover. I hope will get answers to all questions raised in book two.

Conclusion/Recommendation

Overall a good read and I am looking forward to dive further into this unique world.







Dark Wine at Midnight (A Hill Vampire Novel Book 1)A seductive spy. An alpha vampire. A deadly assassin after them both...
When a rogue vampire group emerges from the shadows to enslave mortals, research scientist Cerissa Patel is the only one with an inside track to stop them.

The catch - she must go undercover in a vampire-controlled town where an assassin is on the loose and everyone is a suspect, including herself.

Worse, she must ignore her growing attraction to vampire Henry Bautista. He's rich, dangerous, and as complex as the wines he makes, and he will do anything to stop her from hurting the community he built.

With Henry watching her every move, she must uncover who's behind the rogue vampires and stop the assassin before Henry discovers what's hidden beneath her skin...

Dark Wine at Midnight is book 1 in the Hill Vampire series. Escape into the mystery, romance, and political intrigue of the Hill Vampire vineyards. Dangerous and seductive, the suspense will grab you and not let go

Wednesday, February 06, 2019

AUDIO BOOK REVIEW: HANOVER HOUSE by BRENDA NOVAK @Brenda_Novak NARRATED by THERESE PLUMMER @tplummer76 #RomanticSuspense





Title: Hanover House
Author(s):  Brenda Novak
Series: (The Evelyn Talbot Chronicles 0.5)
Narrator(s): Therese Plummer
Publisher: Macmillan Audio
Source: Purchased
Format: Audio Book
Release Date: February 9, 2016
Length :  4 hrs 17 mins
Reading Challenges: 2019 Audio Book Challenge, Homework Assignment
Purchase:  AudibleAmazon





Tuesday, February 05, 2019

REVIEW TOUR: MERCY by JOHN W. MEFFORD @JWMefford @beckvalleybooks #Thriller #Mystery



Title:  Mercy
Author: John W. Mefford
Series: Ball and Chain #1
Publisher: Sugar Hill Press
Source: Author via Beck Valley Book Tours 
in exchange for an honest review
Format: Ebook
Published:  January 22, 2019
Genre(s): Mystery, Thriller
Pages: 374
Reading Challenges:  2019 New Release Challenge, Winter COYER, Homework Assignment.

Available to buy from....

Amazon.com   Amazon.co.uk    Paperback