Review: The Bachelor Auction

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Title: The Bachelor Auction [The Bachelors of Arizona #1]
Author: Rachel Van Dyken
Publication Date: October 4, 2016
Genres: New Adult/Adult Contemporary Romance
GoodReads

Synopsis:

Cinderella never had to deal with this crap.

Jane isn’t entirely sure that Cinderella got such a raw deal. Sure, she had a rough start, but didn’t she eventually land a prince and a happily-ever-after? Meanwhile, Jane is busy waiting on her demanding, entitled sisters, running her cleaning business, and . . . yep, not a prince in sight. Until a party and a broken shoe incident leave Jane wondering if princes—or at least, a certain deliciously hunky billionaire—maybe do exist.

Except Brock Wellington isn’t anyone’s dream guy. Hell, a prince would never agree to be auctioned off in marriage to the highest bidder. Or act like an arrogant jerk—even if it was just a façade. Now, as Brock is waiting for the auction chopping block, he figures it’s karmic retribution that he’s tempted by a sexy, sassy woman he can’t have. But while they can’t have a fairy-tale ending, maybe they can indulge in a little bit of fantasy

Sometimes, I just want to write a review like, “This book. It was good. Good book.” But that’s not very helpful to you or me (well, it would save me some time…).

When I think back to reading this book, I think light, fluffy, funny, great read. Then the rest of the story comes floating back into my head like a train wreck. Not that the book itself was a train wreck, but there was some heavy emotional healing in here. I loved the development of the characters as a whole, but I think the Brock’s brothers stole the show for me. I looked forward to their scenes and their entertaining quips. They helped lighten the mood and gave readers a well needed break from the brooding mains. Also, he ending was pretty great, and it really got me excited for the next books.

Side note: I’m crazy excited for the sequel coming out in August: The Playboy Bachelor! The MC is Bentley and I loved his character in this book!

The being said, Jane and Brock fit well together. I really liked how their character grew into themselves. I loved the memories they had of their families especially – there were some cute memories/flashbacks.

Oh. My. Goodness. Jane’s sisters made me want to tear my hair out. I know they were supposed to drive me bananas, but how did they manage to become to freaking spoiled??? I just don’t get it.

As a whole, I really enjoyed this book, but I can’t say it wowed me. It was well written and well executed, but I think I’m just a little tired of the Cinderella story.

Plot: 4/5
Characters: 4.5/5
World Building: 4.5/5
Writing: 5/5
Pacing: 4/5
Overall: 4.5/5
GoodReads Rating: 3.9/5

eARC obtained via Grand Central Publishing via NetGalley.

Cover Reveal: Quanta Reset

Welcome to the Quanta Reset Cover Reveal!
Ready to see the awesome cover!?
Tada!~
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Title: Quanta Reset [The Shadow Ravens #3]
Author: Lola Dodge
Published by: Ink Monster LLC
Publication date: October 4th 2016
Genre: Young Adult Science Fiction
Synopsis:

Quanta has escaped her laboratory prison, but that’s where the good news ends.

Life at the Shadow Ravens’ compound is a disaster. She’s drowning in visions of the dark pasts and darker futures of her fellow Ravens and is plagued by her own panic-inducing memories, but Lady Eva still expects her to “train” and “participate in missions.” Plus, the food tastes like burnt plastic.

The only bright spot is her genetic pairing to the brilliant Altair Orpheus. As their relationship grows, she’s positive that chemicals aren’t the only things drawing them together—although chemistry is definitely involved.

While they test the limits of her game-changing new ability to reset time, word arrives from Eva’s agents: Doctor Nagi is still experimenting with her DNA. If he succeeds in duplicating her power…

Forget the Shadow Ravens. The whole world is toast.

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About the Author:Lola
Lola Dodge is a compulsive traveler, baker, and procrastinator. She earned her BA in English from Stonehill College and MFA in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University–and hasn’t stopped moving since. When she’s not on the road, Lola spends her time indoors where the sunlight can’t melt her, writing or bingeing on anime and cherry soda. She can be summoned in a ritual involving curry, Hello Kitty idols, and a solid chocolate pentagram.
Author Links:
Giveaway:
Enter to win one (1) e-copy of Quanta, the second book in The Shadow Ravens series!

ENTER HERE!~

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Review: Shadow Study

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Title: Shadow Study [Study #4] [Soulfinders #1]
Author: Maria V. Snyder
Publication Date: February 24, 2015
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy Romance
GoodReads

Synopsis:

Once, only her own life hung in the balance.

Oddly enough, when Yelena was a poison taster, her life was simpler. But she’d survived to become a vital part of the balance of power between rival countries Ixia and Sitia. Now she uses her magic to keep the peace in both lands and protect her relationship with Valek.

Suddenly, though, they are beset on all sides by those vying for power through politics and intrigue. Valek’s job – and his life – are in danger. As Yelena tries to uncover the scope of these plots, she faces a new challenge: her magic is blocked. She must keep that a secret – or her enemies will discover just how vulnerable she really is – while searching for who or what is responsible for neutralizing her powers.

Yes, the days of tasting poisons were much simpler. And certainly not as dangerous.

*Spoilers from the first three books will be present, ratings are at the bottom if you just want to know what I thought of it overall*

I have mixed feelings about this book. I fell in love with the Study series back in 2010 or 2011, and when I found out that there would be a new adventure for Yelena, Valek, Ari, and Janco, I fangirled for a good few weeks (and then I noticed the release date and cried, but that’s besides the point). I loved Poison Study, but the next two books disappointed me [Magic Study] [Fire Study]. Not that they weren’t interesting, but the characters kind of let me down. This book, unfortunately followed that pattern.

I loved that this book finally gave a peak into Valek’s past. This was probably the most captivating part of the novel. Valek’s past has always been hidden in the shadows, more so than him, and his story was probably what kept me constantly reading the book. Every time his part popped up, I’d sit up straighter and give the book my full attention, because oh my goodness, it was amazing. Gah, reading about him training and his life in general is the best thing ever. And how he met the Commander! AH. It was awesome. I’d actually recommend the book for old and new fans, JUST for Valek’s story. You have to admit, you’re curious too.

Then there was Yelena. I love her. Don’t get me wrong. But I hate that since she got her magic she’s become a very dependent character. It’s like all of her kickass training and stuff got tossed out the window the minute she found out that she has magical powers. I hate it. And I hated it especially in this book. As stated in the synopsis, her magic is blocked, and she becomes this weak girl. She’s mopey, and sad, and “vulnerable”. Yet, in the first book she was kickass and amazing. She doesn’t even try now. No more warm-ups and training for her. It’s annoying. that’s what it is. Reading about her worrying over her powers drive me insane. I know that she’s worried about some things, like fire world stuff, and getting like barraged with magic mojo, but when it comes to a physical fight, she just can’t and that bothers me beyond reason. She was probably the let down for me in this book, and that sucks.

Janco and Ari are awesome as always, and I really love the new badass touch the new characters add to the story. At least someone can hold their own in a fight. They’re story provides another hint of mystery and intrigue to the story, as well as general confusion and fascination. I love the final twist within their story. It really makes you question loyalties and who’s trustworthy and it’s perfect.

As per usual, her world building was wonderful. While I would’ve liked a little more of it, just to refresh my memory after all these years, it was a perfect amount if you were to read the series consecutively, without pause. I’ve missed the lands of Ixia and Sitia, and I know I’ll miss them just as much as I wait for the next book to come out…

All and all, not my favourite of the series, but not a bad start to the new segment of it. Valek’s story honestly makes the book, and if you don’t want to read it for any other reason, read it for Valek, and you won’t regret it.

Plot: 4.5/5
Characters: 4/5
World Building: 4.5/5
Writing: 5/5
Cover: 5/5
Overall: 4.5/5
GoodReads Rating: 4.23/5

eARC obtained via Mira via Harlequin via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Nerd Blast: Catalyst

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Welcome to the Catalyst Nerd Blast, hosted by Jean Book Nerd !~

CatalystTitle: Catalyst [Insignia #3]
Author: S.J. Kincaid
Publication Date: October 28th, 2014
Genre: Young Adult Science Fiction
GoodReads

Synopsis:

The explosive conclusion to the series reviewers have likened to Ender’s Game and “Hogwarts-in-Space”

This exhilarating, explosive, and heartrending conclusion to the Insignia trilogy brings Tom and his intelligent, passionate, and brave young friends stunning tests and dangerous confrontations and through to an impossible future they could never have predicted.

Tom Raines and his friends are eager to return to the Pentagonal Spire to continue training for the elite Intrasolar Forces, but they soon discover troubling changes: strict new regulations and the revelation that the Spire is under new military control. What begins as an irritating adjustment soon reveals a dangerous shift in reality. Those now in control are aligned with corporate sponsors and their ruthless agendas. And when the military academy begins welcoming new cadets with suspicious neural processors, the first step in a plan with horrifying worldwide ramifications, Tom is desperate to stop it, even if that means keeping secrets from his closest allies.

Then a mysterious figure, the other ghost in the machine, begins fighting against the corporations, but with methods even Tom finds shocking. And when the enemy comes for Tom, how much can Tom endure in the battle to save himself? He must decide if he can still fight when the odds of success seem to be sliding from his grip.

Buy Links:
AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | BOOK DEPOSITORY

About the Author:

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S.J. Kincaid was born in Alabama, grew up in California, and attended high school in New Hampshire, but it was while living beside a haunted graveyard in Scotland, that she realized that she wanted to be a writer. Her debut, Insignia, came out in July of 2012. The second book in the series, Vortex came out in July of 2013. The final book in the INSIGNIA trilogy will come out in Fall of 2014.
Giveaway:
Giveaway is open Internationally. | Must be 13+ to Enter

3 Winners will receive a Copy of CATALYST by S.J. Kincaid.

ENTER HERE!

Review: The Forever Song

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Title: The Forever Song [Blood of Eden #3]
Author: Julie Kagawa
Publication Date: April 15, 2014
Genre: Young Adult Paranormal Dystopian Fantasy Romance

Synopsis:

Vengeance will be hers.

Allison Sekemoto once struggled with the question: human or monster? With the death of her love, Zeke, she has her answer.

Monster.

Allie will embrace her cold vampire side to hunt down and end Sarren, the psychopathic vampire who murdered Zeke. But the trail is bloody and long, and Sarren has left many surprises for Allie and her companions – her creator Kanin, and her blood brother, Jackal. The trail is leading straight to the one place they must protect at any cost – the last vampire-free zone on Earth, Eden. And Sarren has one final, brutal shock in store for Allie. 

In a ruined world where no life is sacred and former allies can turn on you in one heartbeat, Allie will face her darkest days. And if she succeeds, her triumph will be short-lived in the face of surviving forever alone.

THE FINAL HUNT IS ON.

I am extremely conflicted with this novel. I absolutely loved this series. I loved the moral conflict and the balance between good and evil, as the characters tried to define each word and justify their actions. I loved the humour, the violence, individuality of each character. This book had all of those things, but it just didn’t work as well this time.

Note: Before we go on, I warn you that this review may contain spoilers, though I will try to keep it spoiler free. It will mention things that one can gain from the synopsis though (i.e. spoilers to The Eternity Cure).

Let’s start with the synopsis. Yes, I have a slight complaint about the synopsis: It deceived me. I expected a good chunk of the book to be all about the senses – she was a monster, no? So everything should be heightened, seen through the eyes of a vampire out for blood. While I got a lot of description, none of which regarding a crazy vamp with its emotions off, I got a lot of what the last two books had (i.e. an excessive amount of good or evil, peace or murder, etc.). I was fairly disappointed that I didn’t get to see a little bit of psycho, especially on her end (though I guess that would’ve resulted in more angst, which would have made the book even more lengthy).

Next, Allie. Jeezus. Her narrative ran around in so many circles, I got dizzy. One second, it was all, “I AM A MONSTER HERE ME ROAR,” and then five minutes later she was like, “ZEKE THO. I CAN’T -sobs-“. She is really bad with this whole grief thing. Also, even though I appreciated the whole moral battle in the last two books, this time, it was just too much. It was borderline excessive and it really didn’t hold my attention. I flew through the first two books, taking a day to read each one. This one took me three days just to swim through all the moral dilemmas.

The surprise honestly wasn’t a surprise. I suspected it at the end of The Eternity Cure. And I was right. What I wasn’t expecting was the doubled up angst that came later on. The whole monster, demon, thing versus good, pure, and human basically drowned me. It was book one amplified. I was very much done with this conflict by the second half of this book (as was Jackal it seemed). And the romance between Allie and another vampire was painful and excessive. It would surface at the most inappropriate times too. Oh, we’re in the middle of a battle, kay, cool, let’s stare into each other’s eyes as Rabids eat away at our companions. ‘Cause that’s a sure way of surviving. Also, the fact that the romance almost overpowered the whole gotta-save-the-world concept, I was really disappointed. This was a series in which the romance has been pretty tame, but then BAM we get hit by an 18-wheeler full of it. Truth be told, I wish there was less romance and less… everything (except for Jackal, I think I needed more of him).

Zeke. Well, he’s dead, so there’s not much happening there.

I would like to take a moment to bless Jackal. He was the shining star in this novel, providing the comic relief that was very much necessary in order to get through most of the book. His character development was also impeccable. Let’s start from the beginning though. Jackal’s one liners have always made smile, even when he was being a total pain (those times were also entertaining). In this book, his comments basically conveyed everything I wanted to scream at the two love birds. The best line being, “This isn’t rocket science. If you don’t want to be a monster, don’t be a bloody monster! Be an uptight stick in the mud like Kanin. Be a self-righteous bleeding heart like Allison. Or you can stop agonizing about it and be a fucking monster.” LIKE THANK YOU. BLESS YOU ETERNALLY DAMNED SOUL. JFC. THANK YOU. Jackal was the voice of reason (crazy, I know) throughout this installment, next to Kanin, and his character is, most definitely, one of my favourite in YA.

Jackal’s character development was subtle and absolutely perfect. I loved that he didn’t need to war with himself to change a little, he found a perfect balance between his two different worlds: his family and his vampiric urge to be a murdering asshat. Throughout the novel, it was great seeing him transform, little by little into the best YA character ever. If anything, his story was more interesting than Allie’s…

Now, Kanin. Freaking, saintly Kanin. He’s right up there with Jackal, he points out all the garbage in this book, questioning them and being the papa of the lot of them. I’ve respected his character since the beginning of this series. He manages to cut through all the crap and gets right to the crux of things, no matter how ugly the truth is, he’ll give it to Allie and the readers. His character gained my respect and will also remain as one of my favourite YA characters.

On another note, what I love about Julie Kagawa is that she doesn’t shy away from the gore, the blood, and the pain. She jumps right into it, giving us all the details of the fight, the setting, and even the overwhelming romance. I always enjoy reading her books because I always feel like I’m shedding my own reality and donning her fictitious one. It makes her books and characters real, and all that much better (most of the time).

All in all, this was not close to my favourite book in this series. It went in circles a fair amount, and I was pretty much done with all the idle threats and sobbing by the end of the book. That being said, I’d still say read it. Kanin and Jackal help cut through all the garbage and make the book better than it would’ve been without them. This series as a whole brings a new look to the vampire/paranormal series. My only wish would have been for the book to end more with a bang than a whimper.

Plot: 3.5/5
Characters: 3/5
World Building: 5/5
Writing: 4.5/5
Cover: 4.5/5
Overall: 3.5/5
GoodReads: 4.31/5

Novella Blast: Atoning

I honestly didn’t know what to put this under, but oh my goodness, I’m so excited.

I may be a little behind on the whole announcement, and I’m sorry but AHH.

Kelley Armstrong is finally tying up that last string for the Darkest Powers trilogy! That’s right. More Derek, more Chloe, and more Rae!

Yup, Rae is back and ready to help her friends. As they say, better late than never.

So here’s the link to the Prologue and Chapter 1 of Armstrong’s newest Darkest Powers trilogy.

The next update, for the novella, will be up on May 15th !

Book Blast: Diamonds in the Rough

18627634Title: Diamonds in the Rough [The Secret Diamond Sisters #2]
Author: Michelle Madow
Publication Date: October 28, 2014
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Romance
GoodReads

Synopsis:

All-access doesn’t mean no problems.

The three Diamond sisters survived the summer in style after coming to live with their long-lost billionaire father. But making a place for themselves at their exclusive new Las Vegas private school is throwing them any number of gold-plated curves. Savannah’s YouTube stardom turns into a Sweet Sixteen reality show extravaganza with complimentary enemies on the side. Dangerous flirtations don’t keep Peyton from a gamble that will risk far more than she planned to bet. And when Courtney and the sisters’ archenemy, Madison, uncover two explosive secrets, it will rock even this town of glittering illusion and turn their lives upside down all over again.

Pre-Order Links:
Amazon | B&N | Book Depository | iBooks

About the Author:SONY DSC

Michelle Madow wrote her first novel, Remembrance, in her junior year of college. Remembrance is the first book in The Transcend Time Saga, a three part series about reincarnation and true love. The series was inspired by Taylor Swift’s “Love Story” music video. Michelle’s latest YA novel, The Secret Diamond Sisters, about three sisters who discover they are the secret heirs to a Las Vegas billionaire casino owner, was published in March 2014. It is the first in an upcoming trilogy. The second part, Diamonds in the Rough, will be coming out in November 2014.

Michelle lives in Boca Raton, Florida, where she is writing more novels for young adults. She loves reading, spending time with family and friends, traveling, shopping, sunshine, Disney fairy tales, pizza, Broadway musicals (she’s seen her favorite show Wicked 14 times!), and spends way too much time on Facebook (/MichelleMadow) and Twitter (@MichelleMadow).

Visit Michelle Madow at her website for excerpts, giveaways, and more bookish fun!

Review: Wicked Little Secrets

17905353Title: Wicked Little Secrets [Prep School Confidential #2]
Author: Kara Taylor
Publication Date: March 4, 2014
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Mystery Thriller Romance

Synopsis:

Anne Dowling becomes entangled in a web of secrets involving a missing student and a conspiracy at Wheatley Prep in this fast-paced, juicy follow-up to Prep School Confidential

Anne Dowling—a fresh, original, and funny new YA heroine whose knowing, irreverent voice will remind readers of Pretty Little Liars and Private—is back for her second semester at Wheatley Prep. Although things have settled (somewhat) since her roommate Isabella’s death, Anne’s still kind of obsessed with the disappearance of Wheatley student Matthew Weaver thirty years ago, since she found a picture of him and his crewmates with the words “they killed him” scrawled on the back among Isabella’s things.

When Anne learns that her boyfriend Brent’s dad is one of the now-powerful Wheatley alumni who rowed crew with Matthew, and that the crew team continues to induct new members with a creepy-sounding ritual called “The Drop,” she knows further investigation could put her relationship with Brent in danger. Determined to discover the truth, she reaches out to Anthony, Isabella’s townie brother, who helps her delve deeper into the secrets in Wheatley’s past. Secrets someone would kill to keep hidden. As the school’s Spring Formal—and its notorious afterparty—approaches, Anne sees the perfect opportunity to do some off-campus digging into the lives of Wheatley’s VIPs in this thrilling, unputdownable read—but if she’s not careful, she’ll be the next student who never comes back.

Kara Taylor one of my favourite 2013 debut authors. I loved Prep School Confidential and now I love Wicked Little Secrets,as well!

I’m going to get right into it. The book started off with a quick little reference to what happened in the first installment of this series, but it skimmed over it. While I always appreciate the lack of an in depth excessive summary, this time, it took me an extra beat to get back into the story. With a series like this, I feel like I needed to get a little longer overview of what happened a few weeks back in Anne’s world, just to re-familiarize myself with all the names.

That being said, I still found myself sucked into the book from the beginning. Sure, I sat there for a moment every now and then trying to remember Harrow and Upton, but seeing as those characters weren’t really important in this installment, remembering them would only clear up your memory of book one, not enlighten you on the clues that are dropped throughout this one.

As I mentioned previously, I really love the character development in this series. They change in such small and subtle ways, but it makes a big difference in the long run. I loved how Anne accepts her crazy, while those who once accepted it are wondering whether she might actually be crazy instead of an extremely clever teen detective. The only issue I have is the lying. I really wish book characters would just stop lying about everything. It’s really vexing. Aside from that, I can’t give away much without spoiling the book, so I’ll just leave it at this: no matter how much each character changed, I loved the way the story flowed and ran with the plot. No change was inconsequential and I appreciated that every little thing had meaning later on, if not in the moment.

The plot and mystery was extremely well done. This book had my heart pounding throughout; the suspense was killer. While there was one scene that I felt lacked some realism, the plot was, overall, believable and captivating. I really enjoy the way that Taylor can just spin readers and her characters around in circles, planting clues and making dead ends. I really like the dead ends. Though they make the book longer, I feel like every dead end helps make the whole mystery more realistic, and makes the story itself more interesting and shows Anne’s determination. And the end. THE FREAKING END. All the pieces just fell into place and it was perfect. It was dramatic, action packed, and slightly heart-breaking. The very end though clawed at my heart. I have to now wait for the third book. It’s inhumane really, leaving me with such an ending only to cut me off from the knowledge of what’s to come. Gah.

I am in love with this series and am now anticipating the finale to this trilogy, supposedly out in August. Amazing writing, great plot lines and ideas, and a fairly tolerable romance between characters. Kara Taylor is officially one of my favourite authors.

Plot: 4.5/5
Characters: 4.5/5
World Building: 5/5
Writing: 5/5
Cover: 3/5
Overall: 5/5
GoodReads Rating: 4.14/5

ARC obtained via St. Martin’s Press via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Cover Reveal and Excerpt: Wishes

Today, we’re revealing the cover of Wishes by Molly Cochran!

Are you ready ?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TADA ~

 

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Title: Wishes [Legacy #2.5]
Author: Molly Cochran
Publication Date: April 29, 2014
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal Fantasy
GoodReads

Synopsis:

Eager to party, Katy Ainsworth and her friends go on a lighthearted “fairy hunting” expedition, expecting little more than a good time. But when Katy actually encounters one of these magical creatures (in the guise of a cynical, sarcastic teenager) who insists on granting her new master’s every wish, Katy’s world turns upside down until everything she knows seems to be tumbling in a terrifying and uncontrollable freefall.

Pre-Order Links:
Amazon
Barnes & Noble
iBooks

About the Author:Molly Cochran

Molly Cochran, author of the teen paranormal romances LEGACY and POISON, has written 26 published novels and four nonfiction books under her own name and various pseudonyms. Her books include New York Times bestselling novels GRANDMASTER and THE FOREVER KING, coauthored with Warren Murphy, and the nonfiction DRESSING THIN, also a NY Times bestseller. She has won awards from the Mystery Writers of America (Best Novel of the Year), the Romance Writers of America (Best Thriller), and the New York Public Library (Outstanding Books for the Teen Age).

SEDUCTION, the third installment in the Young Adult LEGACY series, is scheduled for release on December 2, 2014 from Simon & Schuster. Two novellas in the series are also coming in 2014: WISHES, due April 29, and a Halloween novella, REVELS, tentatively scheduled for September release.

Molly has lectured extensively and has taught writing at the college level as well as at a women’s prison (where she was NOT an inmate). She also writes a blog on writing technique which appears on her website.

She lives in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

Website || Facebook || Twitter

Excerpt:

When Katy wishes in a carnival fortune-telling booth that her unromantic boyfriend would become more demonstrative, she has no idea that her wish will come true. . . and that she’ll wish it hadn’t!

It was Mabel Bean’s fortune telling booth, which was a nice surprise, considering I could have picked the fake tattoo tent or the All Things Cammo booth. The place was cool and dark inside, and smelled like cookies. Mrs. Bean was dressed like a gypsy, with a headscarf and large hoop earrings, but she was still the soft, comforting presence she always was.

“Katy, dear!” she said as if she were simply delighted to see me. Mrs. Bean was always like that. It was what made her so nice to be around. “Please sit down. Would you care for a treat?” She held out one of her famous cookies.

“Er, thanks,” I said, sitting down uncertainly. I looked over my shoulder in case Peter was behind me, but of course he wasn’t. He’d probably been caught up with his phone call, and hadn’t given me another thought.

“These are great,” I mumbled, my mouth full.

“You look glum, sweetheart,” she said. “Can I help?”

Mrs. Bean was an empath, like my great-grandmother. She could literally feel my pain. I didn’t want to lay that on her, but I knew I couldn’t lie to an empath, so I said, “I don’t think so, Mrs. Bean. It’s just dumb stuff. Boyfriend stuff.”

“Ah,” she said. “But that’s not dumb stuff at all. The whole festival of Beltane celebrates love.”

“Yes, well . . .” I assumed a world-weary pose, draping my arm across the back of my chair. “Maybe love is overrated.”

She smiled. “Oh, no, Katy. Love is the most powerful force in the universe. But like all powerful forces, it can be destructive. Love can hurt.”

“I guess,” I said, feeling myself tearing up again. “But does it have to hurt so much?”

I lay my head on my arms across her wobbly little table, which gave way under my weight. A crystal ball that had been precariously balanced on a little rack rolled off. Mrs. Bean caught it before it hit the floor, but pulled off most of the tablecloth in the process, revealing a particleboard disk that had been set atop a milk crate and was now rolling away. The remains of my cookie went flying, too.

“Gee, I’m sorry,” I said, jumping up to help put things back in order again. In the process I hit Mrs. Bean with my elbow and accidentally pulled the scarf off her head. “Oh, God,” I said as I tripped over the milk crate and struck one of the poles that was holding up the tent. One side of it collapsed, trapping me under the canvas.

“Katy!” She finally pulled me out and held me like a baby in her chubby, comforting arms.

“Look what I’ve done!” I wailed. “I can’t do anything right!”

“Nonsense,” she cooed in the midst of the destruction and chaos I’d generated. “Jonathan will have everything fixed in a minute. Just calm down.”

“O . . . Okay,” I sobbed.

“You’re going to be fine.”

I nodded, although that was just to be polite, because I’d wrecked her tent. I really didn’t feel as if I’d ever be fine again.

“Now,” she said, holding me at arm’s length and giving me a big dimpled smile, “tell me your wish.”

“What?” I wiped my nose with my sleeve.

She pointed to a cardboard sign behind what had been the table. It read Wishes $2.

I figured she wanted to get rid of me, and I couldn’t blame her. “World peace, “I muttered. “I wish for world peace.”

“Come now, Katy,” Mrs. Bean said. “What do you really want?”

I felt my bottom lip trembling.

“Yes, that’s it,” she prodded. “Go ahead.”

“I . . . I wish Peter would pay more attention to me,” I blurted out.

There, I’d said it. Childish, selfish, and silly as it was, that was what I really wanted more than anything in the world. More than world peace.

“Now, doesn’t that feel better?” Mrs. Bean asked, dabbing my eyes with a handkerchief that smelled like baked goods.

“I guess,” I answered. “I’m really sorry—”

“Katy!”

Mrs. Bean and I both turned, startled, at the loud male voice. It was Peter.

“Uh, hi,” I said.

He barreled toward us, kicking things out of his way. Then he threw his arms around me and kissed me passionately.

“Well,” Mrs. Bean said with some embarrassment, “it seems your wish has come true.”

I couldn’t answer because Peter’s lips felt as if they were glued onto mine. I tried to push him away, but he wouldn’t stop. “Good heavens, Peter,” Mrs. Bean said at last. “Some restraint may be in order here.”

“I can’t help it, Mrs. Bean,” he said, crushing me against him. “I love her.”

“Er . . .” I began, but I could barely breathe, let alone talk.

“Well, all right.” Mrs. Bean looked uncertain. “But do you think you could demonstrate your affection elsewhere? I have customers waiting.” She steered Peter out of the tent, with me draped over his arm like a coat. “And perhaps you might tell Jonathan about the, ah, damage . . .”

As soon as we were outside, Peter bent me backward until I was nearly horizontal and kissed me again, his fingers clutching my hair.

“Oh, never mind,” Mrs. Bean said, trotting past us and waving to my family, who were all still nearby. “Jonathan!” she trilled, waving to the carnival hanyman. “I need some help with my tent!”

Jonathan strode over with his toolbox, glancing at Peter and me curiously as he entered Mrs. Bean’s tent. By this time Peter had released me from his embrace, but I knew I probably looked very weird, with wild hair and lipstick smeared all over my mouth, just like Peter’s. I could see my great-grandmother staring, horrified, at the two of us.

End of Excerpt

WISHES will be available for $1.99 at all e-retailers beginning April 29

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Excerpt: Unforgotten

Unforgotten_CVRTitle: Unforgotten [Unremembered Trilogy #2]
Author: Jessica Brody
Publication Date: February 25, 2014
GoodReads

Synopsis:

Some memories are better left forgotten… 

After a daring escape from the scientists at Diotech who created her, Seraphina believes she is finally safe from the horrors of her past. But new threats await Sera and her boyfriend, Zen, at every turn as Zen falls prey to a mysterious illness and Sera’s extraordinary abilities make it more and more difficult to stay hidden. Meanwhile, Diotech has developed a dangerous new weapon designed to apprehend her. A weapon that even Sera will be powerless to stop. Her only hope of saving Zen’s life and defeating the company that made her is a secret buried deep within her mind. A secret that Diotech will kill to protect. And it won’t stay forgotten for long.

Packed with mystery, suspense, and romance, this riveting second installment of Jessica Brody’s Unremembered trilogy delivers more heart-pounding action as loyalties are tested, love becomes a weapon, and no one’s memories are safe.

Excerpt:

CLICK HERE TO READ AN EXCERPT FROM UNFORGOTTEN !

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