Tuesday, August 27, 2013

My Picks of the Week! (27th August 2013)

 Hello, Muses!

This post is late, so I will keep it brief. As August comes to a close, it sure is leaving with a bang! There are quite a few books coming out this week in both categories. In adult books, I highly recommend The Returned by Jason Mott. It's an unconventional zombie story that is currently being made into a tv series called Resurrection. In young adult, Jumped In by Patrick Flores-Scott is by far my favorite YA novel I've read this summer. A must read!

In movies, the two popular releases this week are Pain & Gain starring Mark Wahlberg and Dwayne Johnson and The Great Gatsby starring Leonardo DiCaprio. In tv series, Sons of Anarchy: Season 5 and The Walking Dead: Season 3 are finally here.

There are so many more releases this week, so enjoy!

BOOKS (27th August)


A Brutal Tenderness (A Terrible Love, #2)
by: Marata Eros

There are two sides to every story. In this dark and sexy companion novel to the New York Times bestseller A Terrible Love, experience the sizzling passion and pulse-pounding suspense through FBI agent Cas Steele’s eyes as he hunts down a psychopath...and falls for the killer’s prey.

Cas has been charged with an unsavory task: manipulate the hauntingly beautiful Jewell MacLeod—a woman he has every reason to hate—and slowly gain her trust in order to use her as bait to lure in a killer. But as the killer draws closer, Cas realizes that he can’t deny the scorching chemistry that ignites between him and Jewell, even if giving into his physical desire for her means jeopardizing his mission...and opening himself up to the possibility of a real and terrible love...

Release Date: 26th August 2013

A Million Dirty Secrets (Million Dollar Duet, #1)
by: C.L. Parker

For fans of Fifty Shades of Grey and Bared to You comes a wickedly erotic new novel of innocence, desire, and unbridled pleasure.

Delaine Talbot has a secret. When a matter of life and death threatens to tear apart her family, Delaine makes the ultimate sacrifice. She auctions herself off at Chicago’s most exclusive erotic club. Now she belongs to Noah Crawford, a wealthy mogul who introduces her to a seductive feast of the senses, awakening desires she only dreamed about. 

Noah doesn’t know why Delaine sold her body for a cool two mil. But it’s the perfect business arrangement. The inexperienced beauty will learn to satisfy his every sensual need, yet never touch his heart. Almost immediately their relationship generates heat—in more ways than one. When they fight, they take no prisoners. When they love, they show no mercy. When they’re together, they never want to leave each other’s arms. But soon, their intense, physical bond will take an unexpected turn—evolving into something neither has bargained for: the promise of a lasting love.

Release Date: 27th August 2013

Against the Mark (Raines of Wind Canyon, #9)
by: Kat Martin

The perfect murder is a work of art In one catastrophic instant, Haley Warren's estranged father was taken from her. She never got the chance to reconnect with him, so now she's doing it the only way she's got left: by proving the explosion that killed him was no accident.

When Tyler Brodie, the provocative and handsome P.I. hired by Haley, discovers that her father was investigating a suspected art theft, he knows his death is no coincidence. After all, tens of millions of dollars worth of stolen art could motivate a thief to go to any lengths-including getting rid of anyone poking around where they don't belong.

As Haley and Ty get closer to the truth, the truth gets ugly: Did Haley's dad know too much...or was he in on the take? And although Ty's a consummate professional, he's having trouble focusing on the facts of the case, and not the figure of his gorgeous client. The two are determined to get to the bottom of the case, even if it means they die trying.

Release Date: 27th August 2013

Beneath the Surface (Reluctance, #1)
by: M.a. Stacie

Kyran Reese is a man in control. Driven when it comes to work, focused when it comes to play. From his office to the chalk circle of the bare-knuckle boxing ring, his only thought is to win. That thirst heightens when Dale Porter enters his life. His brother’s assistant should be off limits, but her witty comments and sarcastic comebacks have him desperate to get her between the sheets.

When Dale agrees to Kyran’s relationship stipulation of no labels she’s sucked into a whirlwind of lust, money, and underground boxing. Dale fights her growing affection, trying to hide it when the world around them spirals out of control. All too soon she realizes she can’t hide her true feelings any longer.

Has Kyran finally met his match? Could playing to win mean playing for keeps?

Release Date: 29th August 2013

Monday, August 19, 2013

My Picks of the Week! (20th August 2013)

 Hello, Muses!

Not much going on in the book department this week, but there are a couple worth mentioning in YA. If you like to read LGBT Young Adult novels, then you may want to check out these two: Nail Polish and Feathers by Jo Ramsey and  If You Could Be Mine by Sara Farizan. I look forward to reading both.

There isn't much going on in movies, but I will recommend the little horror flick No One Lives starring the hot, hunky Luke Evans. It's low budget and gory as hell, but it has a neat twist. As we approach the end of August and the beginning of September, you will start to see more tv shows being released on dvd and blu-ray to prepare everyone for new and returning fall series.  This week brings us Boardwalk Empire: Season 3, Revenge: Season 2 and a few others.


BOOKS (20th August)


Feel the Rush (Hard Feelings, #2)
by: Kelsie Leverich

The New York Times bestselling author of The Valentine’s Arrangement continues her sizzling series with a new novel of a plan that goes awry—in the arms of a soldier…

Picking the wrong men is a talent Meagan Mitchell has perfected. She’s sweet, confident, beautiful—and single. With her thirtieth birthday sneaking up on her, she needs a new plan. No more Mr. Wrongs or Mr. Bads, it’s time to find Mr. Safe…

Army Captain, Reed Porter, lives for the thrill—he’s an Airborne Jumpmaster with a rush addiction. He’s sexy and playful, and he quickly tempts Meagan with his rich Southern drawl and sinful looks. But slowing down and settling down are not in his agenda, making him exactly the type of man Meagan wants to avoid…

As their undeniable attraction heats up, Meagan has to decide if she’s willing to risk everything on a chance at love with a reckless charmer. Is she brave enough to bet her future—and her heart—on Mr. Thrill? Or will Reed finally learn that the feeling of a safe landing is just as addicting as the rush of the fall?

Release Date: 20th August 2013

Meet Me in the Middle (Distance Between Us, #3)
by: L.A. Witt

Fool me three times…

Dale Ramsey is looking forward to his twenty-year high school reunion except for one small problem. Adam O’Connor, his old friend—and old flame.

Twice before, Adam has disappeared from Dale’s life. Once after a graduation night fling, and again after a hot reunion years later. When Adam resurfaces this time, single and on the verge of retiring from the Navy, Dale wonders if he’ll want to mend fences…and maybe tear up some sheets.

The spark between them is alive and well, but Dale resists. After all, Adam only seems to come around when his life is in flux, and Dale is through being a placeholder until something better comes along. He wants his friend back, but not if he’ll be deserted a third time.

Inevitably, though, their attempts to rekindle their friendship wind up igniting something much hotter, and stirring up emotions too strong to ignore. Making Dale wonder if he should put his heart on the line…or if this time he should be the one to walk away.

Release Date: 20th August 2013

No Strings Attached
by: Suzan Butler

Ashlynn Connolly has been Ethan Kearney’s best friend since they were twelve, despite the difference in their tax brackets. Though he played stupid pranks on her as a child, and left for a career in the Navy, Ash has always stood by him. But now Ethan has a deadline, and he’s going to put their friendship to the test with a business proposition—a marriage proposal.

If Ashlynn hadn’t been flat-out broke, and about to ask for a loan from her best friend, she might have laughed at Ethan’s proposal. But being laid off with a small child to care for alone changes one’s perspective and the idea of being Ethan’s wife is too much to turn down, and not just because of the money he offers.

Getting married is the simplest solution to both their problems, or so it seems. But while the passion between them scorches the sheets, a shadow from Ash’s past prepares to burn them more thoroughly than either ever expected.

Release Date: 20th August 2013

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Book Review + Giveaway: APOLOGY by Jon Pineda

Author: Jon Pineda
ISBN: 1571311041
Reading Level: Adult
Genre: Fiction
Theme(s): Immigrants, Hardships, Tragedy
Length: 208 pgs
Binding: Paperback
Published: 4th June 2013; Milkweed Editions
Buy: Amazon.com, BN.com


When nine-year-old Tom Serafino’s twin sister Teagan suffers a debilitating brain injury, a police investigation implicates his playmate Mario’s uncle—an immigrant, transient worker known as Shoe. Innocent of the crime but burdened by his own childhood tragedy, Shoe takes the blame for what is in fact an accident caused by his young nephew, ensuring Mario’s chance at a future publicly unscarred.

The lines between innocence and guilt, evasions and half-truths, love and duty are blurred. Can a lie born from resignation, fear, and love transform tragedy into hope? And is the life of one man worth the price of that lie?

Told in vivid scenes alive with imagery and with thematic echoes of John Burnham Schwartz’s Reservation Road and Northwest Corner, Apology explores how the decisions we make in an instant reverberate in the years to come. Apology further paints a portrait of sacrifice within two immigrant families raising first-generation Americans. It explores the measure of duty we have toward one another, and the extent to which abandoning the wreckage of family and the past often leads to unexpected consequences.

Deeply empathetic and beautifully written, Apology marks the novelistic debut of a critically acclaimed Asian American writer.

My Rating:

*Scroll down to enter for a chance to win 1 of 3 paperback copies of APOLOGY by Jon Pineda!*

My Review: It's hard to believe that Jon Pineda's novel, APOLOGY, barely hits the 200 page mark. Why? Because as I sat back and went through my notes to prepare this review, I was pretty much stunned at all of the themes and thought provoking, philosophical questions that I had written in the margins, not to mention the span of years that is covered within the story. I'm not even going to lie-- I tend to like my novels 300+ pages. Maybe it's because it gives me that false sense of getting my money's worth. Or maybe it is just hard to wrap my brain around the idea of an author being able to write a story with depth in under 200 pgs. Whatever the case may be, I admire an author who can shatter my illusions as to what makes a truly memorable novel.

Here is what I liked about APOLOGY. The structure of the novel is broken into 8 parts, each part containing  short, concise paragraphs (sort of like snapshots) that alternates between present day and flashbacks. This format and writing style makes for a very quick read. But don't let that fool you into thinking the story is...

Monday, August 12, 2013

My Picks of the Week! (13th August 2013)

 Happy Monday, Muses!

 Lots of releases this week, so I will leave you to it. However, the ones I am personally looking forward to checking out are: in Adult books, Bikers and Pearls by Vicki Wilkerson , Blood of Tyrants (book #8 in the Temeraire series) by Naomi Novik, and From the Ashes by Daisy Harris. In Young Adult, I've been anxiously awaiting Matthew Quick's Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock.

There's a little bit of everything in Movies this week. If you are looking for action, check out Olympus Has Fallen starring Gerard Butler. If you want to laugh, add The Big Wedding to your list. The flick I can't wait to watch is What Maisie Knew starring Julianne Moore and the hunky Alexander Skarsgard. In TV, Once Upon a Time: Season 2 finally arrives.


BOOKS (13th August)


Abel (5th Street, #4)
by: Elizabeth Reyes

Coming off the worst divorce in the history of marriages, Nellie Gamboa’s looking to let loose and make up for years of neglect. When months of building sexual tension between her and the young hot boxing stud, Abel Ayala, finally peak, she makes him an offer no man would refuse.

No promises. No demands. Just pure unrestrained passion.

Abel’s training for the biggest fight of his career. He has no time for a social life, much less a relationship. So this arrangement couldn't be more perfect. A beautiful woman asking him to help her alleviate her neglected desires—no strings attached. What more can he ask for?

As the lines between lust and something much deeper, begin to blur, Abel finds himself in an even bigger fight.

The fight to regain control of his now demanding heart.

Release Date: 13th August 2013

Adorned, The
by: John Tristan

My name is Etan, and I am Adorned.

A living piece of art, I exist to please the divine rulers of Kered. With nowhere to turn after my father died, I tried my luck in the capital city. Little did I know how quickly I would be robbed, beaten and forced to sell myself into servitude. But I was lucky enough to gain the attention of Roberd Tallisk, an irascible but intriguing tattoo artist who offered to mark me with enchanted ink for the enjoyment of the nobles. I was given a chance to better my station in life, and I could not refuse.

But the divine rulers want not only the art but the body that bears it. In their company I can rise above the dregs of society and experience a life most only dream of, at the cost of suffering their every desire as a pawn in games of lavish intrigue. Their attention is flattering, but I find I'd rather have Tallisk's.

Caught between factions, I learn that a revolution is brewing, one that could ruin Kered—and Roberd and myself along with it…

Release Date: 12th August 2013

by: Shane Lindemoen

When an operational mining detachment uncovers an ancient artifact three miles below the Martian surface, Lance Kattar, one of the most respected particle physicists in his field, accepts a request to examine the find. The moment his hand touches the object though, Lance sets off a series of cataclysmic events that threaten the very fabric of human existence. With help from a diverse group of survivors an orphaned young girl, an anthropologist from SETI, a low-voltage electrician and a baseball-bat wielding biology teacher, Lance embarks on an odyssey of revelation and self-discovery, as he finds himself racing to unravel the mystery of the ancient artifact from Mars, before it collapses into a singularity of world-ending possibilities.

Release Date: 13th August 2013

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

My Picks of the Week! (6th August)

Hello, Muses!

Sorry this post is a day late but as the saying goes, better late than never! I will keep this short and sweet since the post speaks for itself. There are some really cool releases this week, specifically in Adult books (such as BURN by Maya Banks) and Movies (MUD, Place Beyond the Pines, and Oblivion).

BOOKS (6th August)


Beauty & the Butch
by: Paisley Smith

The last thing up-and-coming TV producer Lindsey Mitchell expects to find at an ultra-girly beauty pageant is true love. After all, she’s unapologetically butch, and that’s unlikely to appeal to the primped-and-powdered Southern belles vying for the title of Miss Georgia National.
Ella Northington is the perfectly poised contestant who’s hiding a big secret—she’s a lesbian. But Lindsey’s just too tempting to resist, and what’s supposed to be a one-night stand quickly turns into something more. The lovers are determined to touch and taste every inch of one another.
But the stakes are high and competition is fierce. And if Ella is outed, she risks losing everything she holds dear, including her sexy butch lover.

Release Date: 7 August 2013

Burn (Breathless, #3)
by: Maya Banks

Ash, Jace, and Gabe: three of the wealthiest, most powerful men in the country. They’re accustomed to getting anything they want. Anything at all. For Ash, it’s the woman who changes everything he’s ever known about dominance and desire...

When it comes to sex, Ash McIntyre has always explored his wilder side—extreme and uncompromising. He demands control. And he prefers women who want it like that. Even the women he’s shared with his best friend, Jace.

But Jace is involved with a woman he has no intention of sharing. And now even Gabe has settled into a relationship with a woman who gives him everything he needs, leaving Ash feeling restless and unfulfilled.

Then Ash meets Josie, who seems immune to his charms and his wealth. Intrigued, he begins a relentless pursuit, determined she won’t be the one who got away. He never imagined the one woman to tell him no would be the only woman who’d ever drive him to the edge of desire.

Release Date: 6th August 2013

Claimed (Club Sin, #1)
by: Stacey Kennedy

Presley Flynn is ripe to experience her secret fantasies . . . and Dmitri Pratt wants nothing more than to fulfill them. Once inside the elite Club Sin in Las Vegas, Presley is nervous but excited—and determined to surrender to her every desire. Dmitri is her Master, and his touch is like fire. With each careful, calculated caress, he unleashes her wildest inhibitions, giving her unimagined pleasure.

Presley is different than the other submissives Dmitri has mastered. The BDSM lifestyle is new to her, and so are the games they play at Club Sin. From the start, Presley stirs emotions in him far beyond the raw purity between a dom and the perfect sub. For the ecstasy they share goes beyond the dungeon igniting a passion that claims the very depths of the heart

Release Date: 6th August 2013