Waiting on Wednesday (58)

, by Kt Clapsadl



Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights an upcoming release we are greatly anticipating.

My pick this week:

Vanish - Firelight #2
by Sophie Jordan
Publication Date: September 6th, 2011
Amazon Pre-Order: Vanish: A Firelight Novel

To save the life of the boy she loves, Jacinda did the unthinkable: She betrayed the most closely-guarded secret of her kind. Now she must return to the protection of her pride knowing she might never see Will again—and worse, that because his mind has been shaded, Will’s memories of that fateful night and why she had to flee are gone.

Back home, Jacinda is greeted with hostility and must work to prove her loyalty for both her sake and her family’s. Among the few who will even talk to her are Cassian, the pride’s heir apparent who has always wanted her, and her sister, Tamra, who has been forever changed by a twist of fate. Jacinda knows that she should forget Will and move on—that if he managed to remember and keep his promise to find her, it would only endanger them both. Yet she clings to the hope that someday they will be together again. When the chance arrives to follow her heart, will she risk everything for love?

In bestselling author Sophie Jordan’s dramatic follow-up to Firelight, forbidden love burns brighter than ever.

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Kitty and the Midnight Hour

, by Kt Clapsadl

Kitty and the Midnight Hour by Carrie Vaughn
Kitty Norville #1






Kitty Norville is a midnight-shift DJ for a Denver radio station - and a werewolf in the closet. Her new late-night advice show for the supernaturally disadvantaged is a raging success, but it's Kitty who can use some help. With one sexy werewolf-hunter and a few homicidal undead on her tail, Kitty may have bitten off more than she can chew?







Ever since her brutal attack and subsequent change to werewolf status, Kitty has survived by becoming completely submissive. Yes that does make her little more than a plaything to the rest of her pack, but hey at least she is safe, or at least she thinks. Everything changes when her radio talk show takes off with sudden popularity and Kitty starts to grow some confidence. This causes some major waves in her pack, and while she doesn't want to back down, she also isn't ready for the consequences. Add into the mix a hunter on her tail, and some very powerful vampires who want her show stopped at all costs, and Kitty is in for a world of trouble.
 
I had read several reviews of Kitty and the Midnight Hour that really put me off, so much so that it kept getting pushed further and further down my to be read pile. I'm really glad I decided to give Kitty a shot in the end. In those reviews, she was painted as so weak and pathetic that I didn't think I would be able to stand it, even though they spoke of a "coming of age" type plot. Completely spineless characters really grate on my nerves. Granted Kitty is everything they say she was, but what was also apparent from the very start was her potential. She came across as a scared and lonely girl with some major emotional as well as physical damage who was just trying to survive the hand that she was dealt. All it took was one little catalyst for her to open her eyes and start wanting more, and I was thrilled to watch her grow.

The situation Kitty was in was nothing short of horrific. To me, the whole point of a werewolf pack is for support and protection. Yet, her pack seemed only to care about exploitation and abuse. The forced extreme submissiveness and the alpha's taking of sex from whoever and whenever he chose was sickening. Kitty had to sacrifice half her salary to the alpha pair in the name of protection, yet that protection was no where to be found when she truly needed it. It was really horrible to see her go through the things that she did, but in the long run it may just be for the best. Those events paved the way for Kitty to truly find herself and the strength she needs. I cannot wait to see her continued growth as she has so much potential and in time will be a forced to be reckoned with.

I read incredibly fast so sometimes it can be pretty frustrating for me to read books in a series that have only one or two books released. It just feels that once I really get into the characters and world, I've already flew through the book(s). That being said, I am always on the lookout for any well establish series to satisfy my appetite. So, imagine my delight after finishing Kitty and the Midnight Hour, and thoroughly enjoying it, and then knowing I have eight more already released books to read. I'll be spending the next week or so completely content and engrossed in Kitty's world, leaving me one happy camper. I really cannot wait to dive into the next installment to see how Kitty copes with the aftermath of her decisions and actions. All in all this was a pretty decent book that read really fast and almost immediately sucked me into to caring. I highly recommend it to fans of urban fantasy as it is line you won't want to miss.

Rating:





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Kitty and the Midnight Hour (Kitty Norville, Book 1)

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It's Monday! What are you reading (58)

, by Kt Clapsadl






It's Monday! What Are You Reading, hosted by Book Journey, is where we gather to share what we have read this past week and what we plan to read this week. It is a great way to network with other bloggers, see some wonderful blogs, and put new titles on your reading list.


Here's what I read this past week:





Stone Cold Seduction (Set In Stone, #1)UltravioletShadow Kin: A Novel of the Half-Light City


Stone Cold Seduction by Jess Macallan (Early Review)
Ultraviolet by R.J. Anderson (Early Review)
Shadow Kin by M.J. Scott (Early Review)
Interview with M.J. Scott

I'm really busy today, so this will be a fly by post. Please check out the reviews to see what I thought of each book. Make sure to check out the interview with fantastic debut author, M.J. Scott

Also this week I finally got around to posting pics of my bookshelf. Of course I went to Borders and bought a ton of books, so its currently being rearranged yet again. But you can see the pics before the new books here.

My Upcoming List:

Kitty and the Midnight Hour by Carrie Vaughn
Kitty Goes to Washington by Carrie Vaughn
Kitty Takes a Holiday by Carrie Vaughn

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Interview with M.J. Scott

, by Kt Clapsadl



I received an early copy of Shadow Kin and I loved it!. Check out my review here. M.J. was gracious enough to spend some time answering some questions for you guys. I hope you enjoy the interview, and make sure you check out her fantastic debut!

M.J will be stopping by periodically to answer your questions, so leave lots of comments :)


Shadow Kin is told in dual first person perspectives, which I love! Was it hard to get inside Simon’s head for the male perspective?

Thanks! Two first person POVs is tricky to do…I’ve written male third person before so it wasn’t so much doing the male perspective but making sure the two of them were really distinct in their thoughts and words. It means lots of editing and paying attention to slang in dialogue. I have a whole section of my world bible devoted to language quirks of characters. But I wanted to have both points of view in these books due to the divided nature of the world.

You really did a good job with keeping their "voices" distinct. How many books do you have planned for this series and can you tell us about what’s in store next?

I’ve sold three books in the Half-Light City series. So that’s what I’m aiming for at the moment. Book 2 – Blood Kin – comes out on 5 June next year and it’s Guy’s book and deals with what starts to happen after the big *can’tsayherespoileralert* thing that happens near the end of Shadow Kin.

Oooo I can't wait! How do you choose your character names?

Usually the main characters arrive with their first names attached. Sometimes their surnames too but sometimes I have to poke around for those. When I do have to pick one, I look at both the meaning and the rhythm of the name. I do the same for minor characters if they don’t tell me their names…look at meanings, look at the naming conventions I’ve set up for the world and go for something that sounds right.

If Shadow Kin were to be made into a movie who would be your top picks for the cast?

I do a collage for my books and my stand in for Simon was Jamie Bamber (Apollo from Battlestar Galactica) Possibly because I was more than a little annoyed about the way Apollo never got his happy ending in BSG. Even though my collage images are more about mood than exact look, Jamie is fairly close to my Simon. Simon is taller though, I think : ). My heroine stand in was Miranda Otto, who’s a red headed Aussie actress but she’s not quite right. Actually whoever the model is they used on the cover is very close to my mental image. I wonder if she can act…



Very good picks! I agree that the cover model seems perfect. There's just something about her that really fits. If you could tell readers one thing about yourself or your books what would that be?

That I had a great time in this weird world that arrived in my head one day and I hope they do too!

What are some of your favorite books in the paranormal genre?

One of my all time favorite paranormal/fantasy/urban fantasy books is Sunshine by Robin McKinley. I have multiple copies and re-read it several times a year. I read a lot, it’s hard to narrow things down to a few. I also love Ilona Andrews, Patricia Briggs, Lilith Saintcrow, Keri Arthur, Eileen Wilks, Jacqueline Carey, Guy Gavriel Kay, Sarah Monette, Diana Wynne Jones, Megan Whalen Turner and Lois McMaster Bujold. And I’m a big Terry Pratchett fan.

SunshineMagic Bites (Kate Daniels, Book 1)Moon Called (Mercy Thompson)Night Shift (Jill Kismet, Hunter, Book 1)Full Moon Rising (Riley Jensen, Guardian, Book 1)Tempting Danger (The World of the Lupi, Book 1)Naamah's Blessing (Kushiel's Legacy)TiganaThe Tempering of MenHowl's Moving CastleThe Thief (The Queen's Thief, Book 1)Cryoburn (Vorkosigan Adventure)Snuff: A Novel of Discworld

Wow! That is a hefty list. Some of my favorites are there, but some I haven't heard of. Looks like I have some new authors to check out :) Could you tell us a little about yourself?

I’m a lifelong devoted reader, I’m tall, I love cats, coke zero and the color blue. I have a head full of useless trivia (well, maybe not so useless as a writer) and probably regularly make a fool of myself singing in my car.

I'm bad about singing in the car too.. But I'm tone deaf so it's quite scary. What are your passions other than reading or writing?

I knit and sew a bit. I love the colors and textures of yarn and fabric and sewing and knitting are both things that let the mind wander in a way that’s good for story brewing. I love anything that gives me a story fix in another way, so am a big movie/theatre/tv gal.

I completely agree about those being activities to let the mind wander! Although I prefer to crochet.What is the craziest or at least most interesting thing you have ever done?

Well, possibly the most interesting thing that I can confess to on the internet was selling a book (seriously, writers are boring…we stay inside in our pjs a lot, staring at a computer). In terms of non writing things, possibly one of the best things I’ve ever done was be with one of my best friends when she had her babies. That’s an indescribable moment.

Babies are the best! Just for fun. If you were stranded somewhere but had electric, what three things other than basic survival supplies, would you have to have?

My iPod. A laptop with internet and a dvd drive which would cover off work, books and entertainment and ummmmm, electrical devices…not much else. My cat for the third then.

Finish this statement: "You'll like Shadow Kin if.." 

..you like fantasy worlds with a bit of twisty intrigue, lots of action and a healthy dollop of romance.

Thanks so much for the interview!

Author Info:

I was born in Melbourne, Australia but grew up in various green and grassy parts of Victoria. I moved back to Melbourne for uni and have stuck here ever since, apart from a brief sojourn in London. My life, apart from the day job, revolves around books, writing, the odd sewing, knitting, spinning or quilting binge and taking orders from my feline overlord.

My two great reading loves have always been fantasy and romance. I grew up reading Tolkien alongside L.M. Montgomery and Susan Cooper, Diana Wynne Jones and David Eddings mixed with Heyer, Austen and all the Harlequin and Loveswept books I could find. So I guess it’s inevitable that I wound up writing books that incorporate both genres.




Find M.J. online: 

Book Info:




On one side, the Night World, rules by the Blood Lords and the Beast Kind. On the other, the elusive Fae and the humans, protected by their steadfast mages...

Born a wraith, Lily is a shadow who slips between worlds. Brought up by a Blood Lord and raised to be his assassin, she is little more than a slave. But when Lily meets her match in target Simon DuCaine, the unlikely bond that develops between them threatens to disrupt an already stretched peace in a city on the verge of being torn apart...

Shadow Kin (Early Review)

, by Kt Clapsadl

Shadow Kin by M.J. Scott
The Half-Light City #1




On one side, the Night World, rules by the Blood Lords and the Beast Kind. On the other, the elusive Fae and the humans, protected by their steadfast mages... 

Born a wraith, Lily is a shadow who slips between worlds. Brought up by a Blood Lord and raised to be his assassin, she is little more than a slave. But when Lily meets her match in target Simon DuCaine, the unlikely bond that develops between them threatens to disrupt an already stretched peace in a city on the verge of being torn apart... 




 

In Lily's world, the many different species are ruled by a treaty that has granted a fragile peace. Of course, that treaty cannot help her as she really doesn't have a kind. She's a wraith and can fade herself into nothingness. She was abandoned by the fae and called soulless, left to be raised by the leader of the Blood, to become his personal assassin. He rules with an iron fist and mistakes carry grave punishments. She's made sure to never fail him and fall subject to his torments, yet all that changes when she meets her match in Simon. His unique powers cancel hers, making her powerless, in more ways than one. She finds herself inexplicably drawn to him, but knows she must keep her distance as her master would terrorize and destroy anything that stands in his way of keeping her. Yet her feelings cannot be denied and she will have to face the hard consequences of her actions, and hope for survival.

I've always been partial to books told in first person perspective as they just seem to suck you further into the story. However there is something to be said about a book with multiple perspectives, especially when it pertains to both sides of a couple. I love being able to see how either side is feeling, and it keeps the reader from becoming biased in their opinions of the events because of a limited perspective. Shadow Kin combines the best of both these aspects as it is told in dual perspectives, yet still in first person. I loved this! The transitions were very easy to follow as each time they changed either a moon or a sun image would break the text depending on whose turn it was. I was really impressed with how well the book flowed as typically books with multiple perspectives can be a little jarring or confusing to follow. That definitely wasn't the case with Shadow Kin, making for a very enjoyable read.


Lily and Simon because of their background and their completely different worlds, were a very unlikely couple, and yet they just seemed to work by bringing the best out of each other. To be honest, I think unlikely couples make for the best reads as the tension seems to suck me in more than a love that just comes too easy, and trust me, nothing was easy for Lily and Simon. Even though Simon felt he needed to save her, I think in part Lily saved him as well. He has some dark skeletons in his closet, and she helped him to confront them. Of course, they both have a long way to go, but at least they are heading in the right direction.

The world behind this book was really interesting. It felt similar to a steampunk book, yet not quite. There weren't any gears and goggles, however, they did have gaslights and similar items. Also, the book nor world really revolves around the "tech" like the steampunk books I have read in the past. Shadow Kin's gaslights and other "tech" were more of a subtle background to the story rather than an integral part, being just enough to enhance without overwhelming the story. So, I recommend this book quite highly to anyone who enjoys an action packed read full of danger as well as the potential for love on the side. M.J. Scott is definitely one author I will be watching out for!

(Received a copy from the publisher)

Rating:





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Shadow Kin: A Novel of the Half-Light City

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Ultraviolet (Early Review)

, by Kt Clapsadl

Ultraviolet by R.J. Anderson


Once upon a time there was a girl who was special.

This is not her story.

Unless you count the part where I killed her.

Sixteen-year-old Alison has been sectioned in a mental institute for teens, having murdered the most perfect and popular girl at school. But the case is a mystery: no body has been found, and Alison's condition is proving difficult to diagnose. Alison herself can't explain what happened: one minute she was fighting with Tori -- the next she disintegrated. Into nothing. But that's impossible. Right?




Alison has always had a secret, one that if found out, everyone will think she is crazy. She's always been very careful to keep her differences hidden, but when a girl disintegrates right in front of her, she snaps. Her worst fears come true as she is confined to a mental institution. She rallies against her family and her doctors as they are keeping her there against her will and she will do anything to get out of there. Yet she can't explain what happened right in front of her and has to wonder herself is she hasn't finally gone off the deep end because people don't just disappear.

This book takes right off in the thick of things with Alison waking up in a mental hospital. I cannot imagine the horror of that, especially since she had no real memory of what had happened. She just felt so trapped and my heart wept for her. I was so torn between agreeing with her that the psych doctors were really the enemy and them actually being right. When I forced myself to take a step back and look at it, I realized that while Alison definitely wasn't crazy she also needed some help. Her violent episodes, no matter the cause still needed help of some sort so she could learn to control her outbreaks. It really made for an interesting read as I was on both sides of the fence the entire time, especially since it was so easy to care for Alison.

Okay, so the book was going really well and had a great momentum going right until the 3/4 mark and it was like the brakes were slammed and went in a COMPLETELY different direction. Like change of genre type, that's how big it was. It just made the whole thing seem quite unbelievable. I realize that might sound a little funny considering all I read is fantasy and paranormal stuff, but it was just the extremely abrupt change that didn't seem to work. Perhaps if this change had of happened much sooner in the book or somehow been eased into better I wouldn't have minded so much. Heck if there had of even been a little inkling of the possibility of this change, it would have worked out better. To add insult to injury the ending just did not feel satisfying at all. I mean if you are going to tear the rug completely out from under the reader at least leave them with a really satisfying ending to compensate.

This book had so much potential so it was really frustrating to me that things turned out the way that they did. However, putting that extreme plot change aside, the writing itself was done really well. The characters were full of depth and I was quickly sucked down into their story. I wouldn't even mind reading a sequel to this book now that the "change" has been fully established. In fact I hope that there will be considering the ending. So, in the end I'd have to say that it is a pretty decent read, but just go in with the expectation of a major change and perhaps you won't be caught off guard like I was.

(Received a copy from Netgalley)

Rating:





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Ultraviolet

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