Sunday, July 15, 2018

REVIEW Ramona Finn THE CULLING


Author: Ramona Finn

Narrator: Stacey Glemboski

Length: 8 hours 39 minutes

Publisher: Relay Publishing

Released: Mar. 21, 2018

Genre: Science Fiction


In a solar system where The Authority decides who lives and who dies, only one of their own executioners can stop them. Glade Io is a trained killer. Marked at a young age as an individual with violent tendencies, she was taken from her family and groomed to be a Datapoint—a biotech-enabled analyst who carries out the Culling. She is designed to identify and destroy any potential humans that threaten the colonies: those marked as lawbreakers, unproductive or sick. But when she’s kidnapped by rogue colonists known as the Ferrymen, everything Glade thinks she knows about the colonies, and The Authority that runs them, collapses into doubt. Pulled between two opposing sides, and with her family’s lives hanging in the balance, Glade is unsure of who to trust—and time is running out.
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Ramona Finn writes about courageous characters who fight to live in broken, dystopian worlds. She believes a person's true characters is often revealed in times of crisis, and there is no greater crisis than the worlds that she drops her characters into! She grew up sitting cross-legged on her town's library floor--completely engrossed in science fiction books. It was always the futuristic world or the universe-on-the-brink-of-extinction plotlines that drew her in, but it was the brave characters who chose to fight back that kept her turning the pages. Her books create deep, intricate worlds with bold characters determined to fight for their survival in their dystopian worlds--with a little help from their friends. And, of course, romance is never out of the question ;).
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Narrator Bio
Stacey is an accomplished audiobook narrator and voice actor who has recorded books for many best-selling authors. Many of her favorite books have been for kids and teens, but all genres of narration appeal to her. For Stacey, narration is about having fun breathing life into characters and getting as lost as possible in the story she’s telling. Outside the studio, Stacey is an avid tennis player and fitness enthusiast. She enjoys dog walks, paddle boarding, and most any outdoor activities.

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  I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Ramona Finn. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it

Review:
[Flora]

This is a story set in another world where the rulers control who lives or dies.  The main character is a really strong brave girl named Glade.  She is this world's executioner in training.  Her world takes a weird turn which makes her question all she believes to be true. I love the way the characters must decide what to do - save the world and fight or save their families and keep following the rules.  The characters are well developed and are very relatable.  The story is action packed, and intriguing Even though the main character is a girl, it will appeal to both boys and girls because it is well written and has situations that many kids deal with from dealing with bullying, loss and making choices that have consequences.  The characters are familiar with tech and seem to speak and think as middle to high school children yet have to deal with some really heavy situations.  I found that I just needed to know what would happen next and it even has a romance which helps to show the two sides that Glade must decided which one to chose.  The author and story are wonderful.  I can see this being a stand alone that could be a series.  The storyline is smooth and flows well with no anomalies that could cause problems when reading or listening. Could be read as a summer read comfortably by a sophisticated younger readers or an older reader without seeming like a watered down drama. The audible was clear and the narrator, Stacey Glemboski, did a great job with conveying the meaning of the story.  Her voice is clear and she reads at a good pace.   The audio is clear and the book was easy to access.


Jul. 15th: Dab of Darkness Audiobook Reviews T's Stuff In Pattis Imagination Jul. 16th: Buried Under Books The Book Junkie Reads . . . Jul. 17th: Jazzy Book Reviews Jul. 18th: Book Addict Jul. 19th: Adventures Thru Wonderland Jul. 20th: Lomeraniel Bound 4 Escape Jul. 21st: The Book Addict’s Reviews Smada's Book Smack Sefina Hawke's Books
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Saturday, July 14, 2018

REVIEW C. A. Gray LIBERTY BOX

Author: C.A. Gray

Narrator: Melissa Williams

Series: The Liberty Box series, Book 1

Length: 6 hours 25 minutes

Publisher: Wanderlust Publishing

Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction

Kate Brandeis has it all: a famous reporter at the age of 24, she's the face of the Republic of the Americas. She has a loving fiancée and all the success she could wish for. But when she learns of the death of a long-forgotten friend, her investigations unravel her perfect memories, forcing her to face the fact that she's been living a lie. Jackson MacNamera, trained from a young age in the art of mind control, returns to the Republic for his mother's funeral. Within a few hours of his arrival, authorities collect Jackson and take him by force to a room ironically called The Liberty Box, where he must choose between surrendering his thoughts to the new Republic, or fleeing for his freedom. Kate, bereaved and confused, finds her way to a cave community of refugees, where Jackson seems to offer her an escape from her grief. The two forge an uneasy bond, and in the process Jackson learns that Kate has some insight which may help the hunters in their attempt to free other citizens from the tyranny of the Potentate. Against the expressed wishes of the Council, the hunters plot a series of daring raids, attempting to prove that not only is freedom possible, but that the citizens are not too far gone to desire it. But with the odds so stacked against them, can the refugees succeed in their rescue missions right under the Potentate's nose?
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By day, C.A. Gray is a Naturopathic Medical Doctor (NMD) with a primary care practice in Tucson, AZ, and she writes medical books under her real name (Dr. Lauren Deville). She lives with her husband, with whom she maintains a facetiously contentious movie review blog, and travels as often as they can get away. When not writing or seeing patients, she does yoga, drinks red wine while eating dark chocolate, and consumes audiobooks like there’s no tomorrow!  

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Narrator Bio
Melissa lives with her family, including two dogs and a cat, in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains near Denver, Colorado. After having a corporate job for most of her life, and as a self-proclaimed introvert, she decided to leave corporate America to work from home. Voice overs had always tugged at her heart as something she would like to explore, so she attended some classes and landed with a company that taught her how to break in to the industry. Loving to read, she explored the fast growing world of audiobooks and fell in love with it. She has ten audiobooks under her belt and is currently working on the 11th. Understanding that she should always be learning how to improve her skills, she is currently working with Sean Pratt. When not talking to herself in a padded room, she can be found walking her dog, singing or fishing the Arkansas River.
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  I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by C.A. Gray. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.

Review
[Flora]

As I listened to this story, I was intrigued by the thoughts that this story was so plausible even though it was science fiction.  This is a story of survival.  This is a story of deceit.  This is a story of overcoming all the odds and, it's also a story of observing the realizations of the world around you.  The main character is Kate and in the beginning she is oblivious of all expect the world as the new republic tells her is real, but is it?  It takes an outsider, Jackson,  to use his grandfather's training to show the affluent Americans things are not as they seem in these new Americans.  Kate is a reporter/anchor woman for the government news station, who finds herself in a world full of deceit, murder and government conspiracy all because she wanted to find information out about a long lost room mate. 
This is a well-written epic tale filled with adventure and learning to survive in a new world order.  It really reminded me of the Revolutionary War.  Story is concise and each event builds on the ones creating a very coherent story.  The author has given enough time to develop the characters into complex people.  We see that no character is all good or all bad. Characters had modern day problems and life events including ordering pizza and stopping for coffee and a chocolate croissant in the morning before work.  The book is action packed with themes of not taking things at face value.  It is a theme about loss and survival and dealing with life changing events. This is the first book in the series and it does end on a cliffhanger of sorts, but could be read/listened to as a standalone book.  I look forward to listening to the next two books in the series. 
This well written story was narrated by Melissa Williams, who spoke clearly and at an excellent pace for understanding and dramatic effect.  She changed her voice enough for me to know who was speaking at each time and used inflection to convey emotions of the characters very well.  Her voice changes into each character were consistent throughout the story making it very easy to understand which character was which and the inflection in her voice added to the drama and emotions conveyed in the story both stated and implied. She even gives characters accents which is always a great touch to make the story come to life.
Rating:
Amazon/Goodreads rating: 4.5/5
In Patti's Imagination rating: 9/10

Giveaway The Liberty Box Series Giveaway: $10 Amazon Gift Card
BOOK ONE
Jul. 8th: Dab of Darkness Audiobook Reviews The Book Junkie Reads . . . Jul. 9th: Lilly's Book World T's Stuff Jul. 10th: Adventures Thru Wonderland Jul. 11th: Lomeraniel Buried Under Books Jul. 12th: Jazzy Book Reviews Jul. 13th: Literature Approved The Bookslayer Jul. 14th: In Patti's Imagination The Book Addict's Reviews
BOOK TWO
Jul. 15th: Dab of Darkness Audiobook Reviews The Book Junkie Reads . . . Jul. 16th: Lilly's Book World T's Stuff The Bookslayer Jul. 17th: Adventures Thru Wonderland Jul. 18th: Lomeraniel Jul. 19th: Jazzy Book Reviews Jul. 20th: Buried Under Books Jul. 21st: In Patti's Imagination The Book Addict's Reviews
BOOK THREE
Jul. 22nd: Dab of Darkness Audiobook Reviews The Book Junkie Reads . . . Jul. 23rd: Lilly's Book World T's Stuff The Bookslayer Jul. 24th: Adventures Thru Wonderland Jul. 25th: Lomeraniel Jul. 26th: Jazzy Book Reviews Jul. 27th: The Book Addict's Reviews Jul. 28th: In Patti's Imagination Buried Under Books
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Friday, July 6, 2018

COVER REVEAL -- Amy Daws' SURRENDER & DOMINATE!!!!




Title: Surrender
The Final Harris Brother Duet #1
Series: The Harris Brothers #4
Author: Amy Daws
Genre: Sports Romance
Cover Design: Amy Daws
Photo: Dan Thorson Photography
Model: Adam Spahn
Release Date: July 19, 2018



Blurb

One night of complete surrender is all it takes.

Gareth Harris is Manchester United’s reclusive star defender. He has control over all aspects of his life. But a lifetime of supporting his siblings and filling in for an emotionally absent father has taken its toll.

Sloan Montgomery is a clothing stylist whose world was turned upside down when she found herself pregnant and moving to Manchester with a man who was never supposed to be her forever. Now recently divorced and struggling with shared custody of her daughter, control is a fleeting concept for this American living in England.

Both Gareth and Sloan are in need of a release.

A moment in time where they can forget about their pasts and family pressures...and just...

…surrender.

No one could predict what happens when both of their defences are down.

Surrender is part one of The Final Harris Brother Duet and concludes with Dominate. The Final Harris Brother Duet reads great as a duo, but to maximize enjoyment, check out the first three brothers’ books in Challenge, Endurance, and Keeper. 


ADD TO GOODREADS









Title: Dominate
The Final Harris Brother Duet #2
Series: The Harris Brothers #5
Author: Amy Daws
Genre: Sports Romance
Cover Design: Amy Daws
Photo: Dan Thorson Photography
Model: Adam Spahn
Release Date: August 2, 2018



Blurb

To dominate one’s heart is to truly be free.

The anticipated conclusion to The Final Harris Brother Duet.

After the harrowing attack against Gareth and Sloan, there are more than just physical wounds that must be healed.

Recovering and moving on from their dark pasts is the only way they can truly find their bright futures.

Who will surrender? And who will dominate?








Also Available


AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU

Free in Kindle Unlimited







Author Bio


Amy Daws is an Amazon Top 25 bestselling author of sexy, contemporary romance novels. She enjoys writing love stories that take place in America, as well as across the pond in England; especially about those footy-playing Harris Brothers of hers. When Amy is not writing in a tire shop waiting room, she’s watching Gilmore Girls, or singing karaoke in the living room with her daughter while Daddy smiles awkwardly from a distance. For more of Amy's work, visit: http://www.amydawsauthor.com



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Sunday, July 1, 2018

AUDIO BLOG TOUR AND REVIEW JS Jeager SCROLLS OF ZNDARIA THE GOLDEN WIZARD


Author: J.S. Jaeger

Narrator: R.J. Walker

Length: 5 hours 55 minutes

Series: Scrolls of Zndaria, Book 1

Publisher: Golden Wizard Publishing

Released: Sep. 26, 2017

Genre: Middle Grade Fantasy


Join Nathanial "Nate" McGray, the 15-year-old son of the king's woodsman, on an unforgettable adventure. He is determined to be the first peasant to become a wizard in the magical world of Zndaria. Wedged in a sticky spot, Nate is saved from the town bullies by a mysterious elf named Blinkly. Together, Nate and Blinkly embark on a journey to the Halls of Magic. Along the way, they encounter vicious Dread Vikings, deadly bounty hunters, and a deranged beast. Just as Nate begins to learn magic, the Infinite Wizard and a devilish army attack his kingdom. Will Nate become a wizard? Can he save his kingdom? The story unfolds in the Scrolls of Zndaria: The Golden Wizard.
 
Parents to four wonderful children, Jerry and Stephanie Jaeger enjoy working together as J.S. Jaeger to write uplifting, entertaining stories. Jerry overcame bullying to earn his black belt in Kempo Karate. He served as a special agent for the FBI and currently works as a prosecutor. Stephanie ran her own accounting practice for several years before turning her focus to writing Scrolls of Zndaria with Jerry. Together, they are excited to bring readers of all ages into the magical world of Zndaria.

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Narrator Bio
RJ Walker is a performance poet and voice actor from Salt Lake City, Utah. RJ Has performed at the national poetry slam numerous times, representing Salt Lake City, and Sugar House Utah. At the Individual World Poetry Slam he was a showcased poet on final stage and placed 6th overall at the 2017 Individual world poetry slam. RJ won the NPS Spirit of the Slam award for organizing the first Compliment Deathmatch event. RJ has narrated over 28 audiobooks and produced 2 albums of spoken word poetry. He is also an actor and game designer for Mystery Escape Room in Salt Lake City.

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  • Do you believe certain types of writing translate better into audiobook format?
    • We believe almost any book can be a great audiobook, if the right narrator is chosen. Pictures books would be trickier, since the illustrations are often an integral part of the story, but an audiobook could be used for younger readers to follow along with the book.
  • How did you select your narrator?
    • We had been considering doing an audiobook for sometime but hadn’t taken steps in that direction. At the 2017 Salt Lake Comic Con, a gentleman approached our booth and took our first page challenge (to read the first page and see if you want to keep reading). He read the paragraph with enthusiasm and depth. His badge said “special guest.” It turned out that he was an audiobook narrator/producer. We were quite certain at that moment that RJ Walker would produce our audiobook.
  • How closely did you work with your narrator before and during the recording process? Did you give them any pronunciation tips or special insight into the characters?
    • RJ and Stephanie were in regular contact during the process. We initially met with RJ, and he shared his ideas about giving each race in our world a different accent/voice. There were definitely some names and items that had special pronunciation, but there were others we’d always said one way that RJ said differently, and we’ve adopted his way of pronouncing them.
  • Are you an audiobook listener? What about the audiobook format appeals to you?
    • Stephanie listens to audiobooks on a regular basis. In the past year, she’s discovered it’s a fabulous way to get through her to-be-read list since she has little time to sit down and read. Using audiobooks, she’s able to “read” while exercising, driving, doing housework, etc.
  • If this title were being made into a TV series or movie, who would you cast to play the primary roles?
    • Because our series is the story of five unlikely heroes, our characters would be cast with unknown actors. Our second daughter, Mandy, would love to play Cenaya, the hero in our second book, The Alamist Queen. She named that character and we sent her picture to the illustrator when she was drawn. When we are determining how Cenaya would act, we think of Mandy’s personality.
  • What do you say to those who view listening to audiobooks as “cheating” or as inferior to “real reading”?
    • We see the advantage of reading printed words when it comes to learning the spelling and pronunciation of words. When our eight-year-old daughter wants to count listening to an audiobook for her school reading, she has to follow along with the physical book. In saying that, there are great advantages to reading by listening to an audiobook. You still get to experience the story, you see what works or doesn’t work, and you get to open your mind to new ideas.
  • What bits of advice would you give to aspiring authors?
    • If you want to be an author, you need to start writing. The only guarantee as an author is that if you don’t start, you’ll never finish. Once you’ve started writing, don’t stress perfection in the beginning. That’s why there’s an editing process. We call the first draft our vomit draft because you have to get the ideas on paper and usually they don’t come out the way you picture them in your mind. Don’t get hung up on that. Write that rough, ugly draft then go back and make it beautiful.
  • Do you have any tips for authors going through the process of turning their books into audiobooks?
    • We learned several things from The Golden Wizard for future audiobooks. First, plan on putting time into it. Once your narrator records the book, you have to take the time to listen to each section. You are giving your final approval before the book is released, and you need to love it. To make that process easier, our second suggestion is to make a one page summary listing all the characters in your book. How do you pronounce their names? What are their personalities? Is there anything you know about the story that affects how a scene should be read that your narrator needs to know? Give your narrator as much information as possible to reduce the amount of re-recording that will be needed. Finally, expect greatness, but don’t sweat the really small stuff. Stephanie was quite meticulous when reviewing the recording of Golden Wizard to the extent that she requested changes when the word “the” was used instead of “a”. By all means, request changes that are needed for the story but know that it may be difficult for your narrator to exactly match the tone and flow of the original recording so reserve those changes for the necessary ones.
  • What’s next for you?
    • We are continuing forward with our Scrolls of Zndaria series and the short story series, Short Scrolls of Zndaria, that parallels it. Jerry is halfway done writing the third main scroll, and Stephanie is starting one of the final reworks of the second short scroll, Healing Hands.
  I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by JS Jaeger. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.
Review
[Flora]

The story was well written and takes you on a magical journey with Nate, a 15 year old boy who is bullied and stutters.  Nate dreams of becoming a wizard, but in his land a peasant has never been chosen to be a wizard.  Despite the odds, Nate gains favor with the red wizard and is selected to embark on an action-packed journey.  the whole while you wonder if he will be able to overcome his shortcomings to become a wizard.  The authors, J S Jaeger, have told a great epic in just the first book in the series.  The dialogue is brilliantly done by RJ Walker, the narrator, who helped to bring to life a tapestry of interesting characters who are not all as they seem. The story has a few larger vocabulary words, which are explained in the text of the story quite well.  I enjoyed the laughter and tears in this story which is sure to hold any ones interest.  The narrator uses accents and inflection to convey various characters, but the same accent is used  for the elves or trolls, ect.  to show which type of creature is speaking.  I thought this was an excellent touch.  There are lots of pearls of wisdom in this story of overcoming adversity.  I think it is a good book for those readers/listeners who might be dealing with bullying or striving toward a goal or even those who have experienced loss.  While the book is for a middle school reader, it can be easily read by older readers with a lower reading level or by younger readers with a higher reading level. As it is not watered down nor condescending in any way.  It is a great introduction into the world of the sci fi/ fantasy genre.  It could easily be used as a summer reader. 
The authors, J S Jaeger, wove the story seamlessly.  There are no choppy or left out bits  and in the end it doesn't leave a major cliff hanger making it not only the start to a great series , but also an awesome stand alone book as well.  The characters, while mythical, are believable and most are well rounded with complex personalities.  It has a few plot twists that helped continue interest and suspense. It is a fun story, which was enhanced by the audio.  The narrator, JR Walker, was able to bring each character's unique personality to light while continuing to maintain an accent designated to each creature.   He spoke for both girls and boys in this story and with changes in his voice was able to convey who was speaking and their emotional state. He really made the story come to life. The audio was clear and the narrator spoke in at an easy to follow pace making this a great production as well.   I will look forward to reading/listening to more books by these wonderful authors and this talented narrator. 

Amazon/Goodreads rating: 4/5
In Patti's Imagination rating: 8.5/10 

Giveaway The Golden Wizard Giveaway: $10 Amazon Gift Card Jun. 28th: Dab of Darkness Audiobook Reviews Jun. 29th: Happily Ever BookWorm Jun. 30th: J.R.'s Book Reviews Jul. 1st: In Patti's Imagination Jul. 2nd: Jazzy Book Reviews Jul. 3rd: The Reading Bud Jul. 4th: The Book Addict's Reviews
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