Saturday, April 25, 2015

Stacking the Shelves - 4.25.15

Stacking the Shelves
hosted by Tynga's Reviews (details)

Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!


For Review:

Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass
by Lewis Carroll
narrated by Alison Larkin
-Audiobook, Children's classic
courtesy of author and Kate Tilton's Book Bloggers!
Thanks !
Amazon |


The Devil in the White City:
Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America
by Erik Larson
-Crime, Non-fiction
Amazon | Goodreads

Author Erik Larson imbues the incredible events surrounding the 1893 Chicago World's Fair with such drama that readers may find themselves checking the book's categorization to be sure that 'The Devil in the White City' is not, in fact, a highly imaginative novel. Larson tells the stories of two men: Daniel H. Burnham, the architect responsible for the fair's construction, and H.H. Holmes, a serial killer masquerading as a charming doctor.

Burnham's challenge was immense. In a short period of time, he was forced to overcome the death of his partner and numerous other obstacles to construct the famous "White City" around which the fair was built. His efforts to complete the project, and the fair's incredible success, are skillfully related along with entertaining appearances by such notables as Buffalo Bill Cody, Susan B. Anthony, Nikola Tesla and Thomas Edison.

The activities of the sinister Dr. Holmes, who is believed to be responsible for scores of murders around the time of the fair, are equally remarkable. He devised and erected the World's Fair Hotel, complete with crematorium and gas chamber, near the fairgrounds and used the event as well as his own charismatic personality to lure victims.

=====> Listening to audio version.

World's Fair Gardens: Shaping American Landscapes
by Cathy Jean Maloney
-Garden, History
Amazon | Goodreads

In World's Fair Gardens, Cathy Jean Maloney offers a lavishly illustrated exploration of the gardens and grounds of America's nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century world's fairs. Maloney describes the landscapes of nine of America's great fairs from the 1876 Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia to the 1940 World's Fair of Tomorrow in New York, many of whose legacies are still evident.

=====> The World's Fair Expo topic has currently captured my interest.

OTHER things kinda book-related:

Pride and Prejudice
and Zombies and Marshmallows

LOL! Check out this April Fool's day press release announcement: QUIRK BOOKS TO PUBLISH PRIDE AND PREJUDICE AND ZOMBIES AND MARSHMALLOWS® at here

AND binge watching:

Mad Men
tv series, season 5
-drama, 1960's
Amazon | AMC

Don faces the challenges of keeping both a new marriage and a fledgling company afloat.

=====> playing catch up


* comment and TELL me what you have acquired for your shelves recently

* per usual, check out the sidebar for my current giveaways offers

Friday, April 24, 2015

Blue Sun, Yellow Sky by Jamie Hoang

Blue Sun, Yellow Sky
by Jamie Hoang

Find out more about this book and author:
Twitter @heyjamie

Release date: April 25, 2015
Publisher: HJ Press
Genre: Art, Women's Fiction
Paperback: 298 pages
Rating: 3.5

Hailed as “One of the best technical painters of our time” by an L.A. Times critic, 27 year-old, Aubrey Johnson's work is finally gaining traction. But as she weaves through what should be a celebration of her art, a single nagging echo of her doctor’s words refuses to stay silent—there is no cure. In less than eight weeks Aubrey is going blind.

Traveling on a one-way ticket around the world with childhood friend Jeff Anderson, Aubrey is in complete denial. But a blindfolded game of tasting foreign foods in China jolts her into confronting the reality of her situation. So begins her quest.

In this adult coming of age story, Aubrey struggles to make sense of her crippling diagnosis. But on her journey she finds a deeper understanding of herself and her life—sometimes fragmented and complex, but always with relentless truth.

My two-bits:

This tale is a combination of travel, art, coming of age and transformation - with also a touch of romance.

Most of the book is a journey to different parts of the world which includes some wonders of the world. The descriptions of some of the places visited got me adding them to my destination to travel wish list.

Because the main character is an artist, the perspective of things had a creative and colorful quality.

Although the main topic of going blind is a bit heartbreaking, it is handled well with a positive attitude.


* review copy courtesy of author

* added this to my Bookish Bingo challenge - square: April release

* fyi: BLUE SUN, YELLOW SKY was a finalist in the North Texas RWA’s “Great Expectations” Contest, and was recently named one of Kirkus Reviews’ Indie books of the Month (February 2015 issue).

Thursday, April 23, 2015

PreLaunch Giveaway: Gone for You by Jayne Frost

I am looking forward to starting this new romance and music series...

Gone For You
(Sixth Street Band Series Book 1)
by Jayne Frost
-Contemporary Romance
Release date: April 28, 2015
Amazon | Goodreads

As the guitarist for the rock band Caged, I know the rules: no relationships. No complications. Leave ‘em smiling when you go, but always go. Besides, it’s not like I’m ever in one place for more than a few days at a time. As the next hottest thing out of Austin, the band and I are riding the wave, and the music is all that matters.

Until her…

Lily Tennison has “complication” written across her beautiful face. But I can’t get involved. The timing’s all wrong. But she’s under my skin, and I can’t resist her troubled eyes and sweet smile. And I do have a little time to kill. Not much, just a few days in Dallas.

So I’ll scratch the itch and move on, like I always do.

Simple, right?

Note: You won't need to turn up the heat—Sixth Street Bands Romances have plenty of steamy fun. This story can be read as a stand-alone but is part of the Sixth Street Bands music scene.

--~ Blog Tour Giveaway ~--

WIN a $100 Sephora gift card and

a signed copy of the book for US entries only

as well as three ebooks for international entries

a Rafflecopter giveaway


* book tour sponsored by Upgrade Your Story

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Unelmoija: The Dreamshifter by Elle Boca

Unelmoija: The Dreamshifter
by Elle Boca

Find out more about this book and author:
Twitter @elleboca

Published: 2013
Publisher: self
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Rating: 3

Weeia series:
The Dreamshifter
The Mindshifter
The Spiritshifter
The Timeshifter

Ready for a new kind of urban fantasy? In Unelmoija: The Dreamshifter a pretty yet ordinary young woman's life is transformed beyond her imaginings when a traumatic incident changes her forever.

An unexpected encounter with the father she never knew and a mysterious man that repels and attracts her at the same time leads her to discover she's not who she thinks she is. Amy, unassuming, intelligent, with newly acquired superhuman skills, lives in a historic Miami waterfront estate. She’s about to discover that a safe location, youth and special abilities may not be enough to protect her from whoever wants her dead.

Zombie sighting:
"That explains why you looked like something from a zombie flick when you showed up in the kitchen. I take it that's what you mean by yesterday?"
-chapter 18

My two-bits:

This first book to a series (5 books so far) introduces a race of super humans living in the modern day. The sights, sounds and eats of Miami, Florida provide the backdrop for this story.

There is a dash of action and danger. But mostly, the main character, Amy, learns about her special skill and how to use/control it throughout the story.

Also, Amy gains insight on her parents and their history.

I found Amy to be a foodie. There were several scenes where the appreciation of food (or lack thereof) was the focus.


* review copy courtesy of author

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Stacking the Shelves - 4.18.15

Stacking the Shelves
hosted by Tynga's Reviews (details)

Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!



None of the Above
by I.W. Gregorio
Amazon | Goodreads

For Review:

Young Jane Austen:
Becoming a Writer

by Lisa Pliscou
-Biography, Jane Austen
courtesy of author
Thanks !
Amazon | Goodreads


The Highlander's Hope
(Highland Heart #1)
by Cali MacKay
-Contemporary Romance, Scotland
-free kindle offer
Amazon | Goodreads

Wilder's Mate
(Bloodhounds #1)
by Moira Rogers
-Paranormal, Steampunk
-free kindle offer
Amazon | Goodreads

From Powell's Indiespensable club package (details):

Powell's subscription club delivers the best new books, with special attention to independent publishers. Signed first editions. Inventive, original sets. Exclusive printings.... Every six weeks, another installment to read and admire.

Plus, every package is stocked with exciting surprises!

This is package #52. (sorry - this is sold out, but you can signup for the next one)

Our Endless Numbered Days
by Claire Fuller
-Contemporary Fiction, Mystery
Powell's | Goodreads

Peggy Hillcoat is eight years old when her survivalist father, James, takes her from their home in London to a remote hut in the woods and tells her that the rest of the world has been destroyed. Deep in the wilderness, Peggy and James make a life for themselves. They repair the hut, bathe in water from the river, hunt and gather food in the summers and almost starve in the harsh winters. They mark their days only by the sun and the seasons.

When Peggy finds a pair of boots in the forest and begins a search for their owner, she unwittingly unravels the series of events that brought her to the woods and, in doing so, discovers the strength she needs to go back to the home and mother she thought she’d lost.

After Peggy's return to civilization, her mother begins to learn the truth of her escape, of what happened to James on the last night out in the woods, and of the secret that Peggy has carried with her ever since.

Also in the package:

The New and Improved Romie Futch
by Julia Elliott
-Southern Gothic
Release date: October 5, 2015
Amazon | Goodreads

From the author of The Wilds, which Publishers Weekly called “a brilliant combination of emotion and grime, wit and horror,” comes a debut novel that is part dystopian satire, part Southern Gothic tall tale: a disturbing yet hilarious romp through a surreal New South where newfangled medical technologies change the structure of the human brain and genetically modified feral animals ravage the blighted landscape.

Down on his luck and still pining for his ex-wife, South Carolina taxidermist Romie Futch spends his evenings drunkenly surfing the Internet before passing out on his couch. In a last-ditch attempt to pay his mortgage, he replies to an ad and becomes a research subject in an experiment conducted by the Center for Cybernetic Neuroscience in Atlanta, Georgia. After “scientists” download hifalutin humanities disciplines into their brains, Romie and his fellow guinea pigs start debating the works of Foucault and hashing out the intricacies of postmodern subjectivity. The enhanced taxidermist, who once aspired to be an artist, returns to his hometown ready to revolutionize his work and revive his failed marriage. As Romie tracks down specimens for his elaborate animatronic taxidermy dioramas, he develops an Ahab-caliber obsession with bagging “Hogzilla,” a thousand-pound feral hog that has been terrorizing Hampton County. Cruising hog-hunting websites, he learns that this lab-spawned monster possesses peculiar traits. Pulled into an absurd and murky underworld of biotech operatives, FDA agents, and environmental activists, Romie becomes entangled in the enigma of Hogzilla’s origins.

Exploring the interplay between nature and culture, biology and technology, reality and art, The New and Improved Romie Futch probes the mysteries of memory and consciousness, offering a darkly comic yet heartfelt take on the contemporary human predicament.


Thanks a bunch with huggles
to Lori of Imagination Designs
for the fabulous blog design she created for vvb32 reads!


* some of these may be offered as giveaways within the next two months

* comment and TELL me what you have acquired for your shelves recently

* per usual, check out the sidebar for my current giveaways offers

Imagination Designs
Images from: Lovelytocu