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Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Divergent by Veronica Roth (Audiobook)

Author: Veronica Roth

Narrator: Emma Galvin
Publication: May 3, 2011
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Genre: Dystopian, Young Adult
Pages: 487
Length: 11 hours 11 minutes
Audience: 15 and up
Rating: 5 out of 5
Source: Overdrive Audiobook

Synopsis (from In Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue—Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is—she can't have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.

During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles to determine who her friends really are—and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes infuriating boy fits into the life she's chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she's kept hidden from everyone because she's been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers a growing conflict that threatens to unravel her seemingly perfect society, she also learns that her secret might help her save those she loves . . .or it might destroy her.

My thoughts:
I am so late to the Divergent train. My fiance enjoyed book and has tried for a while to get me to start the series. Several of my friends have read it and enjoyed it as well. After seeing the novel is being made into a movie, I had to read it. My fiance read the novel after reading The Hunger Games and told me it was much better than The Hunger Games. I'll be honest and admit I was not the biggest fan of The Hunger Games, but I'm not sure how you could compare this novel to The Hunger Games in a fair manner. The only similarities are the corrupt government (dystopian setting) and how people are separated into different groups. I will also admit this, I did enjoy Divergent much more than The Hunger Games.
Beatrice is your everyday teenager who is trying to find her place in the world that is different from your typical dystopian novel. In this novel, there are factions. I kept trying to decide which faction I would be in while I was reading. As much as I would love to have picked one, they were all corrupt in their own ways and had their flaws. If I had to pick, I think I would be Erudite, I love to learn new things. Anyway, back to the story. The characters are realistic. You have your bully who is Peter, the two true friends who are Christina and Will. Then you have Al, whose role is in a grey area until his place is cemented in the story line. Four is well, I'll leave that for you to find out. There are many different characters who may not seem important, but they all fulfill their roles to the storyline in due time. 
To me, Veronica Roth has created this world and seamlessly tied all the ideas and people together. It is a splendid novel. I listened to the audio version and the narrator was fantastic. Emma Galvin kept my attention and Veronica's story played through my mind as I spent hours in my kitchen cooking, preparing, and cleaning just so I could listen to the next sentence. It took time for me to read it because I've been busy, but once you pick up this book it is hard to put down. I highly recommend it!

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Cover Reveal& Excerpt: Kiss Me in Paris by

Title: Kiss Me In Paris
Author(s): Kimberly Kinrade & Dmytry Darpov
Publication: July 2, 2013
Publisher: Daring Books Publishing
Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance

Synopsis: When the city of love brings two lost souls together, only their darkest secrets can tear them apart. 
Winter Deveaux tried love once. It didn't end well. Unable to open herself up to another heartbreak, she hides in her romance novels as she struggles to break out as a real author. She thinks Paris holds the answer to a new start, but when her nightmare follows her across the world, she's forced to face the darkness living like cancer inside her soul. If she doesn't, she might miss her chance to become the kind of writer she's always wanted to be. But more than that, she'll miss out on the greatest love she's ever known. 

Cade Savage is heir to the largest ranching family in Texas. Part cowboy, part architect, Cade has his feet forever in two worlds. When he receives an acceptance letter from the school of his dreams, he must decide between family and destiny. But ghosts from his past still haunt him, and circumstances beyond his control may decide his fate. When Winter and Cade meet, everything they believe about life, love and what it means to be happy is put to the test. 
Will the magic of Paris pull these two lost souls together? Or will their darkest secrets tear them apart?

Kiss Me in Paris is a standalone novel in the Kiss Me Series. Travel the world with the Deveaux sisters as they find love, and trouble, in all the right places.

From Chapter 4: Cade
Kiss Me in Paris by Kimberly Kinrade & Dmytry Karpov

Paris—the city of artists and dreamers. Being here is the fulfillment of a lifelong dream. So why do I still feel so out of place?

I don't belong in Texas, running my dad’s business. And if I don't belong in the city, pursuing my career, then where do I belong? Where will I ever find the peace that’s been missing from my life for so long?

My dad’s voice echoes in my mind. "What’s bothering you, kid?" He always asked me that when I was young, and I never had an answer for him.

I still don’t.

The suitcase sits nearly empty on my bed, save for one last item. I pull out the envelope, weathered by years and tears but forever unopened. The familiar scrawl across the front, just the one word, Goodbye. I run my thumb along the seal, wondering, not for the first time, what words he could have written that would make a difference, that would make the ache of his loss easier to bear.

But I don't open it. I’ll never open it. Instead I slip it into my pillow as memories of the past flood me.

The mocking.

The pain.

The end.

“What's bothering you, kid?” Dad's voice whispers through me again. At least this time I have an answer, a way to act on the anger crashing through me.

I can’t go back and right the wrong done so long ago, but I can right a recent wrong, and dag nab it, will it feel good.

Pulling on my boots, hat on head, I lock up my room and seek the object of my righteous rage.

I pause, staring at the door to Winter’s room as if I could see through it. She and her roommate went out; I heard them leave. Her pale face and eyes the color of a frozen lake, haunt me. Eyes filled with tears when that asshole stepped on her small hand, so delicate. I held it as it turned blue, swelling in pain.

Pulling myself from her door, I hunt the hallway looking for Rodney. I don’t know what their history is, and I don’t care. No one deserves to be treated that way. I’ve seen guys like him before, known them all my life, and I’ve never backed down from putting jerks like him in their place.

I’m not about to start today.

It’s not because of the girl, I’m sure of that. She’s beautiful, sure. And funny, in an offhanded way. But that’s irrelevant. I’m doing this because it's the right thing to do.

I spot him just outside of our dorms, leaning against a tree. Or rather, pinning a girl against a tree as he does what I can only assume is his version of flirting.

The girl in question doesn't appear to enjoy his attentions, if the bored droop to her face is any indication.

Rodney's not a small guy, probably played football back home, but I've got several inches and a lot more hard muscle on my side.

I pull him from the girl, who looks wide-eyed at me before scampering off, and grab the front of his shirt, glaring down at him. “I don't know why you like tormenting girls. I don’t even want to know. But you’ll leave Winter alone. Got it?”

My face is inches from his, close enough that I can smell the alcohol on his breath.

He laughs, spraying me with his saliva. “You think she doesn’t like having me around? Guess you don’t know what a slut she is.”

Growling, I slam him against the tree.

He groans, but offers another cocky grin. “If you want my advice, stay away. She’ll spread her legs easily enough, but you’ll regret ever sticking—“

I’m done listening.

I knee him in the groin. His mouth opens, a high-pitched yelp escaping as he collapses on the ground. “This is me politely telling you to back the hell off Winter and leave her alone."

Author Bio: 
Dmytry and Kimberly are the husband and wife writing team behind the KISS ME Series, Eye of Newt, Sunrise and Nightfall, Wanderlust, and The Fallen Series.

Kimberly is the award-winning, bestselling author of the New Adult paranormal romance series The Seduced Saga, the YA paranormal thriller/romance The Forbidden Trilogyand children's fantasy series The Three Lost Kids.

Dmytry writes fantasy—be it urban, dark or epic—is a musical composer, pianist, and designs books covers (exclusively for his wife's and their co-authored books).

They live with three little girls who think they're ninja princesses with super powers and who are also showing a propensity for telling tall tales and using the written word to weave stories of wonder and magic.

Become a member of the Street Team for Kimberly and Dmytry:

Connect with Kimberly:

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Thursday, July 25, 2013

Royal Street by Suzanne Johnson

Author: Suzanne Johnson
Title:Royal Street Sentinels of New Orleans #1
Publication: April 10, 2012
Publisher: Tor Books
Genre: Adult, Paranormal, Mystery
Pages: 336
Audience: 18 and up
Rating:  4.5 out of 5
Source: Public Library

Synopsis (from
As the junior wizard sentinel for New Orleans, Drusilla Jaco’s job involves a lot more potion-mixing and pixie-retrieval than sniffing out supernatural bad guys like rogue vampires and lethal were-creatures. DJ's boss and mentor, Gerald St. Simon, is the wizard tasked with protecting the city from anyone or anything that might slip over from the preternatural beyond.

Then Hurricane Katrina hammers New Orleans’ fragile levees, unleashing more than just dangerous flood waters.

While winds howled and Lake Pontchartrain surged, the borders between the modern city and the Otherworld crumbled. Now, the undead and the restless are roaming the Big Easy, and a serial killer with ties to voodoo is murdering the soldiers sent to help the city recover.

To make it worse, Gerry has gone missing, the wizards’ Elders have assigned a grenade-toting assassin as DJ’s new partner, and undead pirate Jean Lafitte wants to make her walk his plank. The search for Gerry and for the serial killer turns personal when DJ learns the hard way that loyalty requires sacrifice, allies come from the unlikeliest places, and duty mixed with love creates one bitter gumbo

Then Hurricane Katrina hammers New Orleans’ fragile levees, unleashing more than just dangerous flood waters.

While winds howled and Lake Pontchartrain surged, the borders between the modern city and the Otherworld crumbled. Now, the undead and the restless are roaming the Big Easy, and a serial killer with ties to voodoo is murdering the soldiers sent to help the city recover.

To make it worse, Gerry has gone missing, the wizards’ Elders have assigned a grenade-toting assassin as DJ’s new partner, and undead pirate Jean Lafitte wants to make her walk his plank. The search for Gerry and for the serial killer turns personal when DJ learns the hard way that loyalty requires sacrifice, allies come from the unlikeliest places, and duty mixed with love creates one bitter gumbo.

My thoughts:
 I thoroughly enjoyed this book . I had a tough time starting the novel, but once I got into it, I really had fun reading it. The characters were perfect southerners. I could replace the characters with people I know, except for the paranormal/fantasy part. I really liked DJ. She is a skilled wizard who loves New Orleans and Cheetos. I could relate to her- on the Cheetos part. Haha! Anyway, her relationship with her partner, Alex is hilarious and frustrating. At one point I was laughing so hard I snorted, fell over in the bed and died laughing. It took me a full two to three minutes to regain my composure to continue the story. There is enough spooky elements, hilarious moments, and realistic, and sad moments to keep the book entertaining and easy to relate to. The book really painted an image of New Orleans and made me want to visit NOLA more than ever. So if you're into the fantasy/paranormal genre or not- give it a try! There are two more books that are out in the series. The library I use does not have them, but I hope to get my hands them on it soon!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Review: Shade of Vampire by Bella Forrest

Title: A Shade of Vampire (#1)
Author: Bella Forrest
Publication:  December 17, 2012
Publisher: CreateSpace
Source: Author
Genre: YA Paranormal Romance
Audience: 15+ 
Rating: 5 of 5

Synopsis: On the evening of Sofia Claremont's seventeenth birthday, she is sucked into a nightmare from which she cannot wake.  A quiet evening walk along a beach brings her face to face with a dangerous pale creature that craves much more than her blood. 

She is kidnapped to an island where the sun is eternally forbidden to shine.  An island uncharted by any map and ruled by the most powerful vampire coven on the planet. She wakes here as a slave, a captive in chains. 

Sofia's life takes a thrilling and terrifying turn when she is the one selected out of hundreds of girls to join the harem of Derek Novak, the dark royal Prince. 

Despite his addiction to power and obsessive thirst for her blood, Sofia soon realizes that the safest place on the island is within his quarters, and she must do all within her power to win him over if she is to survive even one more night.

Will she succeed? ...or is she destined to the same fate that all other girls have met at the hands of the Novaks? 

My Thoughts: Sofia takes a walk on the beach that will change her life. She must make the best of a horrible situation. Using her natural skills Sofia is able to quickly determine who she can trust and this may save her life. Sofia faces one major problem and being a captive makes it difficult for her to avoid it. 

Derek hate what he is. He has spent the last 400 hundred years avoiding his destiny. When he meets Sofia he is drawn to her, for some unknown reason. For her he will fight what he has become to be whom he wants to be. Derek must make a choice family or true love. 

Bella Forrest has created a beautiful story that I love love love. This is a very quick read and I was hooked from the beginning. I love that the story is told from both Sofia and Dereks points of view. Bella has given each character so much depth that I feel like I know them. My favorite part of the the story would be the end. The decisions that both Sofia and Derek make are life changing. I cant wait to read the next book  A Shade of Blood. Hopefully I will get to this in the next few months. This is a great read for young adult, romance and paranormal lovers. This would also be a great read for reluctant readers. 

I’d been meandering along the shore for about an hour when I suddenly sensed that I wasn’t alone. Someone was approaching me from behind. My heart leapt. I was so sure it was Ben, that when a stranger showed up beside me, I couldn’t hide my disappointment.
He must have noticed, because a smirk formed on his lips. “Were you expecting someone else, love?”
I eyed him suspiciously, remembering how many times my father had told me not to talk to strangers. I looked him over, taking in his appearance. My eyes widened. I couldn’t find words to describe how fine a man he was. He was almost beautiful. The first thing I took notice of was how his blue eyes were about three shades brighter than any I’d ever seen before. It was such a stark contrast to his pale – almost white – skin and dark hair. Standing beside me, he was easily more than half a foot taller. His height, broad shoulders and lean build reminded me of Ben, but he had a presence that was far more imposing than my best friend’s.
My gaze settled on his face.
I realized that he was inspecting me just as closely as I was him. His eyes on me suddenly made me feel uncomfortably vulnerable. I gave my father’s advice a second thought, but quickly canceled out all notions of heeding to his counsel when I reminded myself that he stopped caring a long time ago.
I straightened to my full height and mustered all the courage I had to keep myself from running away from this stranger.
Big mistake.
The confident smirk didn’t leave his face for even a moment.
“Like what you see?”
“A bit full of yourself, aren’t you?” I scoffed, annoyed by his audacity.
He stepped forward, closer to me, and leaned his head toward mine.
“Don’t I have the right to be?”
He knew he looked good and wasn’t about to act like he didn’t.
“Whatever,” was my oh-so-brilliant comeback.
My shoulders sagged with defeat as I took a step back, unsettled by how close he was now. I rolled my eyes and did a one-eighty, not quite in the mood to play whatever game this stranger was proposing.
I would soon realize that I was about to play his game whether I liked it or not.
He grabbed my arm and turned my body to face him. This motion alone made every single internal alarm I had within me go off in a frenzy.
This man was danger and I knew it. I tried to wriggle away from his touch, but I was no match for his strength.
“Tell me your name,” he commanded.
I was about to refuse, but was horrified to find myself blurting out my name in response.
“Sofia Claremont.”
As soon as I revealed my name, his eyes lit up with a kind of sinister approval. Then he reached for my face and traced his thumb over my jaw line.
“Hello, Sofia Claremont. You’re one stupid girl for taking a walk alone at this time of night. You never know what kind of evil a pretty little thing like you could happen to come by.”
I found myself wondering exactly what kind of evil he was. But I was suddenly overcome by the sensations that were surrounding me. My senses took in everything at once. I heard the waves, felt the sand, smelled the ocean salt, tasted the flavor of cherry and saw the stranger’s manic appearance as he stuck a needle to my neck. The effect was instant. I was barely able to gasp, much less scream. I went from sensing everything to sensing absolutely nothing.
My last conscious thought was that I may never see Ben again.

You can also get an exclusive FREE “sneak preview” of the first 6 chapters by clicking here!:

(Make sure you check it out now because this preview will not be available for 

Author Bio: 
I've been telling stories pretty much since I could talk. Instead of having my parents read me bed-time stories, I would prefer to share with them my own made up tales.
As I grew older, I developed a passion for the fantasy genre.
I’m an avid reader and a hopeless Potterhead.
If you sign up for personal email updates from me here: ,
you'll be the first to hear about my new releases.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Interview & Excerpt: Slingshot by Matthew Dunn


by Matthew Dunn

on Tour June 25 - July 31, 2013

Book Details
Genre:  Fiction
Published by: William Morrow / HarperCollins Publishers
Publication Date: June 25, 2013
Number of Pages: 416
ISBN: 9780062038029


Master spy Will Cochrane must catch a missing Russian defector as well as one of Europe’s deadliest assassins in this action-packed follow-up to Sentinel, written by real life former field officer Matthew Dunn. 

Will Cochrane monitors the nighttime streets of Gdansk, Poland—waiting for the appearance of a Russian defector, a man bearing a top secret document, who Will believes is about to step out of the cold and into the hands of Polish authorities. But suddenly everything goes sideways. The target shows up, but so does a team from Russian Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) hell-bent on keeping the man from walking. Then, in a hail of crossfire, a van speeds into the melee and snatches the defector out from under them all. Everyone wants the man and the codes he carries—but now he’s gone and it’s up to Will and his CIA/MI6 team to find him before the Russians. 

Will tracks both the missing Russian and his kidnappers, believing the defector has his own warped agenda. But soon it’s apparent that the real perpetrator could be someone much more powerful: a former East German Stasi officer who instigated a super-secret pact between Russian and US generals almost twenty years ago. An agreement, which if broken for any reason, was designed to unleash the world’s deadliest assassin. 

Then Will learns that the Russians have tasked their own ‘spycatcher’—an agent just as ruthless and relentless as Will—to retrieve the document. Now Will knows that he faces two very clever and deadly adversaries, who will stop at nothing to achieve their aims.

Read an excerpt:

Chapter 1 
Berlin, 1995 

Each step through the abandoned Soviet military barracks took the Russian intelligence officer closer to the room where men were planning genocide. 

Nikolai Dmitriev hated being here. 

And he loathed what he was about to do. 

The barracks were a labyrinth of corridors and rooms. Icy water dripped over the stone walls, covered with paintings of Cold War–era troops and tanks; the air was rank with must; the officer’s footsteps echoed as he strode onward, shivering despite his overcoat and fur hat. Previously, the complex would have housed thousands of troops. Now it resembled a decaying prison. 

He turned into a corridor and was confronted by four men. Two Russians, two Americans, all wearing jeans, boots, and Windbreakers, carrying silenced handguns. The Special Forces men checked his ID and thoroughly searched him. It was the seventh time this had happened as he’d moved through the barracks. Two hundred Russian Spetsnaz operatives and an equal number of U.S. Delta, SEALs, and CIA SOG men were strategically positioned in the base to ensure that every route to his destination was defended. Their orders were clear: kill any unauthorized person who attempted to get near the men in the room. 

The men motioned Nikolai forward. 

Reaching the end of the corridor, he stopped opposite a door. Extending his hand to open it, he hesitated as he heard a high-pitched noise. Glancing back, two rats in a stagnant pool of water and grease were ripping skin and flesh off the dying carcass of another screeching rat, neither predator attempting to fight the other for the meat; instead they seemed to be cooperating. He wondered if he should turn around and leave while there was still time. Everything about his presence here was wrong. But he was under orders. 

He entered. 

It was a large mess hall. Ten years ago, he would have seen long trestle tables and soldiers eating their meals. Now it was bare of any furnishings save a rectangular table and chairs in the center. Graffiti covered the walls, most of it crude, deriding the Soviet Union. Cigarette smoke hung motionless in the stagnant air. Rainwater poured from cracks in the high ceiling onto the concrete floor. 

Sitting on one side of the rectangular table were a U.S. admiral, a U.S. general, and a CIA officer. Opposite them were two Russian generals. Between them were two files, and ashtrays. None of the men were in uniform; the presence in Germany of America’s and Russia’s most powerful military commanders was secret. As was the presence of the intelligence officers. Nikolai himself was Head of Directorate S—the SVR’s division with responsibility for illegal intelligence, including planting illegal agents abroad, conducting terror operations and sabotage in foreign countries, and recruiting Russians on Russian soil. The CIA officer at the table was Head of the Special Activities Division—responsible for overseas paramilitary activities and covert manipulation of target countries’ political structures. 

At the head of the table was a small, clean-shaven, middle-aged man with jet black hair. Dressed in an expensive black suit, a crisp, woven white silk shirt, and a blue tie that had been bound in a Windsor knot, the man removed his rimless circular glasses, polished them with one end of his tie, and smiled. “Always late for the party, Nikolai.” Nikolai did not smile. “A party requires salubrious surroundings. You’ve chosen unwisely, Kurt.” 

Kurt Schreiber nodded toward the vacant chair next to one of the Russian generals. “Sit, and shut up.” Nikolai said with contempt, “You’ve no authority over me, civilian.”

Kurt chuckled. “When you and I were colonels in the KGB and Stasi, you’d have called me comrade.” Nikolai sat and nodded. “Different times, and I’d have been lying to your face.” 

Kurt’s shrill, well-spoken words were rapid: “The Russian premier chose me to chair this meeting. Not you.” He placed his manicured fingers together. “That is telling.” 

“I agree. It tells us how low we’ve stooped.” Nikolai looked at the Americans. “Have the protocols been drawn up?” “They have.” Admiral Jack Dugan nodded toward the Russian generals. “It took us two days.” General Alexander Tatlin lit a cigarette. “It was worth the effort.” The Russian exhaled smoke. “The results are precise.” 

“Seems to me,” CIA officer Thomas Scott said, eyeing Nikolai with suspicion, “that you’re not comfortable with this.” Nikolai laughed, his voice echoing in the bare hall. “How can any sane man be comfortable agreeing to this?” “Kurt Schreiber’s idea is brilliant.” 

“It’s psychotic.” Nikolai looked at Schreiber and repeated in a quieter voice, “Psychotic.”

U.S. general Joe Ballinger pointed across the table. “Schreiber’s right. The act has to shock the fuckers into submission. Man comes at you with a knife; you defend yourself with a gun. Trouble is—we haven’t got anyone on our side of the fence who’s got the balls to do another Hiroshima or Nagasaki. So we make the decision, and it’s a sane one—as uncomfortable as it may make us.” 

Nikolai frowned. “You haven’t reported the true meaning of the protocols to your president?” 

The U.S. commander shook his head. “Nope, and we’re never going to. Nor are subsequent presidents going to find out.” He gestured toward his two American colleagues. “We’re the only Americans who’ll know the secret. No one else stateside would ever agree to this plan.”

“And that’s because they lack my . . . imagination.” Kurt withdrew two ink pens, handed one to General Leon Michurin and the other to Admiral Dugan. “Signatures, please.” 

The Americans signed a sheet of paper inside one of the files; the Russian generals did the same in their files; they exchanged documents, countersigned, and moved both files in front of Nikolai. 

The SVR officer stared at the two files. All that was needed to make this official was his signature on both documents. 

“Nikolai, we’re waiting.” Kurt’s tone was hard, impatient. 

Nikolai looked at the men opposite him; ordinarily they were his enemies. He pictured the two large rats, feasting at opposite ends of the third rodent. 


The Russian intelligence officer shook his head. “This is wrong.” 

“And yet the alternative isn’t right.” 

“If I sign this, millions of people could die.” 

“Not millions, you fool.” Schreiber smiled. “Hundreds of millions.” 

Nikolai couldn’t believe this was happening. He’d always hated Kurt Schreiber. The man was undoubtedly highly intelligent, but also untrustworthy, manipulative, and cruel, and since the collapse of East Germany he had made millions through illegal business ventures. Now he had the ear of the Russian president, and that made him more dangerous than when he’d been a Stasi officer. “How can you live with yourself?” 

Schreiber shrugged. “I view the deaths as necessary statistics. I suggest you do the same.”

Nikolai was tempted to respond but knew there was no point. 

Schreiber would not listen to reason. 

Pure evil never did. 

Nikolai gripped the pen, momentarily closed his eyes, muttered, “Forgive me,” and signed both documents. 

“Excellent.” Kurt reached across, grabbed both files, shoved one at the Russian generals, the other at the Americans. The former Stasi colonel smiled. “The protocols for Slingshot are now in place, ready for use should ever the need arise.” 

“Great.” General Tatlin stubbed his cigarette out. “So now we can get out of this shithole.” 

“Not yet.” Kurt placed his hands flat on the table. “How can we ensure that no one in this room ever reveals the secret of what’s missing in the files?” 

Thomas Scott huffed. “Slingshot won’t work if one of us talks. We’ve agreed that.” 

Kurt stared at nothing. “We have, but we need more than agreement.” 

“What are you proposing?” 

“Insurance.” Kurt looked at the men before resting his cold gaze on Nikolai. “Time can erode a man’s resolve. But fear can keep him resolute.” 

“Speak plainly.” 

Kurt nodded. “One day, one of you may wake up with a crisis of conscience and decide that he can no longer carry the burden of this secret. That can’t happen. So, my solution is simple and effective. The Russian president has authorized me to activate an assassin. He will be deployed as a deep-cover sleeper agent, and his orders are to kill any of you”—he looked at the CIA officer and smiled—“who talks.” 

General Tatlin lit another cigarette and jabbed its glowing tip in the direction of Schreiber. “You expect us to live our lives with a potential death sentence hanging over us?” 

Schreiber interlaced his fingers. “Yes.” 

Dugan laughed. “Take a look around this base, Schreiber. We’re the kind of men who like to have impenetrable security wherever we go.” 


“Damn right.” The admiral’s tone was now angry. “Send out your assassin, for all we care. But you’re going to need better insurance than that.” 

“There is no better insurance.”

Nikolai wondered why Schreiber looked so smug. “Who’s the assassin?” 

The sound of rainwater striking the concrete floor seemed to intensify as Schreiber momentarily closed his eyes. “You know of him by the code name Kronos.” 

“Kronos!” Nikolai’s stomach muscles knotted. “Why was he selected for this task?”

Before Schreiber could answer, General Ballinger asked, “Who the hell is Kronos?” 

Nikolai looked at the American commanders as he began to sweat. “He was a Stasi officer, tasked on East Germany’s most complex and strategic assassinations. Since the collapse of communism, he’s been on the payroll of Russia. He’s . . . he’s our most effective killer. One hundred and eighty three kills under his belt. Always successful.” As he returned his attention to Schreiber, he felt overwhelming unease. “Why was he selected?” Schreiber opened his eyes. “Because the Slingshot secret is so vital. We needed our very best assassin to ensure that”—he swept his arm through air—“no amount of impenetrable security can protect a man who might betray us.” Schreiber checked his watch and looked toward one of the far corners of the mess hall. In a loud, clipped tone, he called out, “Show them.” 

Nikolai and the others immediately followed Schreiber’s gaze. At first nothing happened. Then, movement from within the shadows at the corner of the room. 

A big man stepped into the light. 

Standing directly underneath one of the streams of water pouring down from the ceiling. 

Was motionless as he allowed the icy rain to wash over his head. 

His handgun held high and trained on them. 


Schreiber smiled and looked at the others. “Not only did Kronos get past all of your men, he did so with very precise timing. I ordered him not to enter this room until one minute ago, so that the contents of our discussion would remain confidential to only the men around this table. Since then, he’s been pointing his weapon at you.”

General Michurin slammed a fist down onto the table. “How dare you make fools of us!” 

Schreiber responded calmly, “It wasn’t my intention to make fools of you. Rather, to demonstrate to you that you do indeed have a potential death sentence hanging over you.” He darted a look at Kronos. “Give them what they need.” Nikolai felt fear course through him as he watched the German assassin take measured steps toward the table, his gun still held high. Though Nikolai was one of only a handful of SVR officers who was cleared to know all about the Kronos operations, he didn’t know the assassin’s real name. Moreover, this was the first time that he’d been in the presence of the man. Kronos was well over six feet tall, muscular, had black hair, and was wearing clothes identical to those Nikolai had seen worn by the base’s protection detail. 

Kronos lowered his weapon, withdrew a piece of paper from his jacket, tore it in half, and slapped one piece of paper on Admiral Dugan’s chest before moving to the other side of the table and doing the same with the other bit of paper on General Michurin. 

Schreiber spoke to the Americans. “I suggest you bury your paper deep in the vaults of the CIA.” Then to the Russians, “Put yours in the SVR vaults.” He cupped his hands together. “Never combine them, unless there is reason to do so.” 


“One of you needs Kronos to put a bullet in your head.” 

“You . . .” 

“Enough, admiral!” Schreiber composed himself. “The relevance of the two pieces of paper will be made known to you if the need arises. Until that time, Kronos will vanish. No one, not even me, will know of his location. He’ll wait for years, decades if necessary, until he is . . . needed.” 

Thomas Scott shook his head. “Our men have been here for three days.” The CIA officer felt disbelief. “And when they arrived, they searched the entire base.” 

General Ballinger shrugged. “There’s no way he could’ve penetrated the base today. He must have entered the complex before our men arrived and hid in a place they failed to search.” 

“That’s the only possible explanation.” Admiral Dugan pointed at Schreiber. 

“Next time we’ll be more thorough.” Schreiber grinned, though his expression remained cold. “Kronos—show them where you were two and three days ago.”

The German moved around the table, placing a photograph each in front of the Russians and Americans. Incredulity was on all of the men’s faces as they stared at the shots. 

Each showed the inside of their homes in America or Russia. 

A local newspaper clearly showing the day’s date. 

And Kronos pointing the tip of a long knife toward family photos. 


Kronos retrieved each photo, placed them in a pile in the center of the table, and lit them with a match. Schreiber watched the flames rise high. “Our meeting is concluded. You will take the Slingshot protocols back to your respective headquarters. You will secrete the torn papers as instructed. You will keep your mouths shut. Otherwise, my assassin will find and kill you.” 

Kronos stepped away from the men, hesitated, then turned to face them. In a deep voice, he said, “Gentlemen, I left all of your men alive, though I must apologize for the harm I had to cause some of them.” 

Then he disappeared into the shadows.

Cover Reveal & Giveaway: Love Among Pigeons by Abria Mattina

Title: Love Among Pigeons
Author: Abria Mattina
Publication: August 23, 2013
Genre: YA Contemporary


Synopsis: In this companion novella to Wake, Frank invites the Kirk family home to Smiths Falls for Thanksgiving weekend. Holidays are always a trial for the family that lost their daughter and sister, but Frank is hopeful that this Thanksgiving will be the exception. He has some happy news to share. If only he wasn’t so reluctant to talk about it.

Author Bio: Abria Mattina works in marketing and book production. She holds a Certificate in Publishing from the New York University Summer Publishing Institute and a degree in English Literature and Psychology from the University of Ottawa. When she isn’t writing she enjoys travelling, eclectic books, blogging, and baking. She lives with her fiance, Daniel.

Her debut novel, WAKE, is about the struggle to redefine life after experiencing cancer and caring for an ill loved one.

Giveaway: The author is giveaway for a paperback ARC of the book. Please use the Rafflecopter form below to enter. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, July 19, 2013

Cover Reveal: Not Pretty Enough by Jaimie Admans

Title: Not Pretty Enough
Author: Jaimie Admans
Publication: August 1, 2013
Genre: YA Contemporary


Synopsis: “New Year’s Resolutions:1. Lloyd Layton will know I exist. He once said three whole words to me, so this is obviously progress. If I don’t get a proper conversation out of him soon, then I’ll take my top off and streak through the cafeteria, because nobody could fail to notice these boobs.2. I will not get expelled for streaking through the cafeteria.”

Those are the words that begin her mission.Chessie is fourteen, not pretty enough, and very much in love. Lloyd Layton is hot, popular, and unaware of Chessie’s existence.Her goal is clear: to get Lloyd to love her as much as she loves him, and she has exactly one year to do it.As Chessie’s obsession with Lloyd reaches boiling point and she starts to spin a web of lies that spiral out of control, Lloyd turns out to be not quite the prince she thought he was. Can Chessie avoid the gathering storm before things go too far?

Not Pretty Enough is a contemporary young adult comedy suitable for ages thirteen and over.

Book two in the series will be released early 2014.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Audio Review: Walking Disaster by Jamie McGuire

Title: Walking Disaster
Author: Jamie McGuire
Narrator: Dan Bittner
Publication: April 2, 2013
Publisher: Simon & Suhuster 
Format: Unabridged
Length: 11 hours and 26 minutes
Source: Publisher/Author
Genre: Romance
Audience: 17+

Synopsis: Finally, the highly anticipated follow-up to the New York Times bestseller Beautiful Disaster. 

Can you love someone too much?

Travis Maddox learned two things from his mother before she died: Love hard. Fight harder.

In Walking Disaster, the life of Travis is full of fast women, underground gambling, and violence. But just when he thinks he is invincible, Abby Abernathy brings him to his knees.

Every story has two sides. In Beautiful Disaster, Abby had her say. Now it’s time to see the story through Travis’s eyes.

My Thoughts: I really enjoyed this story as Travis is my favorite character from Beautiful Disaster. Seeing his point of view and getting a better understanding of his past really explained a lot for me. Travis is a strong character and the beginning of the story shows you why. At 3 years old Travis makes a promise to his dying mother. Travis is one to keep his promises at all cost. When Travis meets Abby its time to make good on that promise. 

I don't feel that it is necessary to read Beautiful Disaster before you read this as Walking Disaster is the same story but from Travis' point of view. Although, there are a few things that you didn't get to experience in the first book this is the better book. The epilogue is to die for. I would love to the story to continue where the epilogue left off. 

This is an unabridged single-voiced audio. The original work is appropriate for audio adaption. The narrator did a great job with the narration. It was easy to feel each emotion that Travis went through. Each character was differentiated by tone and inflection. Travis was made more interesting through Bittner's narration. Pacing was well maintained throughout the production and the plot flows without interruption.