Pretty Sly by Elisa Ludwig


About the Book:
Author: Elisa Ludwig
Publisher: Katherine Tegen, an imprint of HarperCollins
Source: Author, ARC Copy
Publication Date: 2014
Find the Review elsewhere:
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Series: Pretty Crooked – Book 2
Genre: Fiction; Young Adult/Teen
Rating: 3 ½ out of 5
Hotly following on the heels of the events of Pretty Crooked, the next story in this contemporized Robin Hood-esque invention goes a step further than petty thieving. Staying out of trouble and accepting her punishment is something 15-year-old Willa Fox is willing to accept as she knows not just how badly she messed up by thieving from her wealthy classmates, but also the disappointment she caused her mother. Only trouble now is her mom has disappeared and though she’s been told by her mother no to follow, Willa cannot seem to stay behind without answers. Despite the parole violation she will raise by leaving, she again falls into old habits with the assistance of her friends including her crush, Aidan Murphy who just happens to be willing to take to the open road with Willa in pursuit of finding her mother.

Everything about the first novel was really setting up this sequel – from the bread crumbs of secrets dropped about to Willa’s foray into criminal mastery, the set-up was unavoidable. Usually I’m not the biggest fan of road trip stories, they more often than not bore me, however as was the case with this novel, sometimes I get sucked in and that’s what happened with this novel. It read even better than the first and while I find Willa a sometimes-hard-to-like heroine, in this present at least there is a better reason for her taking a walk on the wild side. Vulnerable and worried over a future, she set out to fight for and protect that future only to set in motion a series of events that she never could have foreseen.

For the most part, this is a fun, quick read. The cute guy is a bad boy who doesn’t fall into the same stereotypes (he’s got oodles of secrets, yes, though I don’t think they are going to pan out as being of the norm) and irrespective of Willa's personality who hasn’t always been the most endearing titular Robin Hood – although knowing she’s only 15 sort of excuses some of her jumping in without thinking attitude, though I am liking the people around her, including her friends and the occasional appearance of a certain FBI agent. Ludwig does a good job of upping her premise in book two, making us guess what will go down (even though readers can surmise the big reason for the mystery, all of the little things leading up may throw up for a loop) instead of staying in a rut and possibly getting stale which promises to keep things hopping once Elisa’s presumed third book will release. It’s been a long while since there has been a more fun pair of on-the-run crooks in a long while!  

(Parental review; there are a few innuendos and one kissing scene is a bit suggestive, some profanity including sh*t, h*ll and some minor crudities. Willa and Aidan break into homes while on the run, steal cars, etc.)

Synopsis: Willa Fox was told to stay out of trouble. In fact, it was an order from a very serious juvenile court judge.

However, that was before Willa found her house ransacked and a mysterious email from her mother telling Willa she had to leave Paradise Valley for a while and not to come looking for her. Willa knows her mom’s in danger and that no one at school will miss her after her recent sticky-fingered stunts with the Glitterati. So with the help of her pal Tre and with her degenerate crush Aidan as her wingman, Willa violates her probation and hits the California highway in search of her mom.

But when Willa and Aidan’s journey turns dangerously criminal and they wind up being the focus of a national manhunt, they realize it’s sometimes easier to escape the law than the truth—and that everything Willa thought she knew about her mom, and her life, was wrong. – Goodreads

Sincere thanks to the author, Elisa Ludwig for providing a complimentary ARC copy of this book for reviewing purposes.
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When Calls the Heart, Prelude to a Kiss (2014)


Considering I wound up reviewing all eleven episodes (thank you readers for tolerating this) of Hallmark Channel’s second scripted series, you had to know there was no way I wouldn’t post an entry rambling, gushing or ranting over the season finale, friends – no matter the conclusion. Luckily for you, with it now coming to a close, this will be the last gush of the series. For now.
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INSPYs 2014 Reminder + Update



Good afternoon, friends! It’s Friday. Doesn’t that instantly make you smile? We interrupt the regularly scheduled When Calls the Heart blogging (if interested, that will be up tomorrow morning) to bring you a reminder and updates as applies to the INSPYs. First off, thank you all for your patience as regards the push to create awareness of the program on Twitter and to those of you who shared about our program, you rock! Heads up to anyone interested, Monday is the last day for bloggers to apply to be a part of our judging panels. We’re excited by the talent who applied and are happy to accept any additional applicants until March 31st 

Due to some behind-the-scenes snags, we will also tweak our timeline a bit. If you are looking for an earlier notification, instead of notifying judges on April 8th and announcing shortlists on the 15th, the change is going to push it back to notify our judges on April 15th and then share the shortlists on April 30th 

If you’re thinking about judging, this is your last weekend to sign up or if you know someone who has expressed interest, they can apply through March 31st. Thanks for all of your enthusiastic support of this program – it’s a blast to have you as a part of this program, without that support, the INSPYs wouldn’t be what it has become these last four year without that. Thank you.  



Happy Friday!
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Little Letters, Edition 13


Dear 24,
cannot wait. Hashtag #JackIsBack
 
Dear ABC Australia,
what gives?
 
Dear A&E Network,
please, be kind. Give fans closure for The Glades. It doesn’t have to be an entire long season, but we deserve something better than what you leave us with.
Please.
 
Dear Books,
I like you. I love you. I want more of you.
Only please don’t bury me.
 
Dear Dancing with the Stars,
you’re back with more drama than ever.
Bring. It. On.
 
Dear Emma Approved,
you’re growing on me. Mainly because of Knightley taking charge a few episodes back – that’s right, Alex! Show Emma who is boss.
 
Dear Friday,
less than 24 hours and you’ll be here! You’ve been missed.
 
Dear Jon,
in case you didn’t get what we were telling you: you can’t leave!

Dear Lady Mary,
have you made your choice or is this just a rumor?
 
Dear Politics,
say what?
 
Dear Readers,
I cannot seem to let this meme go without writing a note to you all because it’s YOU who keeps this blog going and such a fun place to hang out. Thank you for all the enthusiasm and support you show – and to all of you recent followers, you’re very welcome here!
 
Dear Reviews,
you still haven’t mastered the art of writing yourself?
what gives?
 
Dear Target,
as if I didn't like you enough.
Minion T-shirt love? Yes, please.
 
Dear USPS,
thank you for delivering sensational packages this week.
same thing next week, then...
 
Dear Self,
would you please get your emails, cards and letters written?
stop procrastinating.
 
Dear Veronica Mars,
thanks for the memories and for being such a sassy female protagonist.
 
Dear When Calls the Heart,
thanks for being a sweet, wholesome family series.
You’re welcome to return next year.
 
Dear X-Men,
please be awesome. 

(I cannot for the life of me get a link widget to work so while I'd love to offer the usual widget in the bottom of this entry, it didn't happen this go round.)

If you'd like to join in, as always, feel free, Friends!

Happy Thursday.

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The Lone Ranger (2013) - Western Adventure with Comedic Flair


Seeing Disney putting out a new action-packed adventurer with Johnny Depp headlining it should be par for the course these days. With four Pirates of the Caribbean films to his resume, this re-boot of the classic shouldn’t have been a surprise – especially given studios affinity to re-make instead of, hey, here's a novel idea, originality. 


All of the whispered tales of The Lone Ranger and his trusty sidekick, Tonto tell of heroic adventures. Or so that is what the young would-be cowboy questions an aged Tonto when, while touring an exhibit on display at the carnival, Tonto (Depp) suddenly comes to life and regales the youngster. Stories of how the Lone Ranger legend came to be...

It starts on a train ride to a dusty Texas town where John (Armie Hammer), a good peace-loving lawyer who believes everything can be solved without gunfire, is on the train that will lead him back to his hometown only when the train is attacked by a gang looking to free a prisoner, John finds himself trying to handle the situation and instead finds himself shackled next to a second prisoner watching as the criminal rides away. That prisoner is Tonto.  

Unlike his brother in personality and choice of work, John’s return brings him face to face with his Texas Ranger brother and the woman he still desperately loves, his sister-in-law (Ruth Wilson). As the rangers prepare to ride out after the escaped prisoner who was being brought to their Texas town in order to be hung for his crimes, John insists on accompanying his brother and fellow lawman unaware that an ambush awaits the group of men.  


Despite some hit or miss feelings about "modern" westerns, trailers for this movie had me laughing at its antics. Couple that with my cousin recommending this as a really good movie despite its unwelcome reception from critics, and I was game to see it. Though I won’t be a girl reviewing this in consideration of the original, I will say that I understand some of the complaints. They're reasonable though to be honest, this would-be blockbuster is too much fun to dismiss. 

Starting off with a bang and a surprising bout of humor, the movie has a great albeit familiar set up, with an exception. Honestly, I wasn’t fond of the script starting in a latter “present” only to retreat into the past. I’m not sure what purpose this served aside from its powers of implication without really telling the audience how its characters eventually sought to be a part of something beyond story origins, and upholding justice in a system that became corrupt. This method seemed most foolish if studios have sequel plans (which is likely not going to happen considering the box office showing) and at the very least leaves the audience sort of depressed by what is, an otherwise rip-roaring hilarious film.  

Of course, the acting is nothing to sneeze at. Depp’s character acting continues to amaze. Then there is newbie Armie Hammer who many fairytale addicts may recognize from Mirror Mirror. He really stepped up to fit this role very well and it made me happy to see a cast suited to their respective roles plus Helena Bonham Carter logs some screen time. Disney has again created a production full of genius with its spectacular stunts and costuming though the film does run overlong (this isn’t helped by its “stops” in the middle of a sequence to return to the “present”), the excitement makes up for it as does the humor though for anyone who isn’t a fan of “slapstick,” this can flirt with the silly on occasion. Perhaps not my favorite adventuring blockbuster, one cannot argue that The Lone Ranger knows how to do exhilaration and they do it with a snazzy attitude all their own.

(Parental review: there are some “tense” sequences in which characters are threatened with guns or other violence [explosions, hanging sentences] and a group of rangers are murdered in an ambush. There is some thematic elements revolving around Tonto's heritage, cheeky innuendo as one character is a madam and perhaps a minor profanity here and there. The film is rated PG13.)
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Reality TV


Today it's confession time.

Watching “reality television” has never been my thing. It’s just something I’ve not been drawn to so aside from turning on the television too early for a Hallmark movie or whatever I may be interested in and seeing the final minute of The Bachelor, I’ve steered clear of the scene as I prefer my drama in fictionalized form. Now we come to me admitting to a guilty pleasure. When I happened to find out that gymnast Shawn Johnson (who later returned in an all-star season) was competing on a certain ABC show called Dancing with the Stars, I didn’t know much about it but I knew I’d have to watch her compete. Tuning in as a mere casual viewer wasn’t supposed to mean anything however it didn’t take much to fascinate me and a season (or two) later with more familiar faces in the celebrity cast I was hooked and have watched more loyally than I ever thought.  

Every year those who follow my Twitter timeline (you guys rock, really, thank you! And a shout-out to my hashtag #DWTS buddy, Charity) you’re probably annoyed by the tweets I share every Monday night which is why I figured that was “enough” love for Dancing with the Stars but since I do talk about it so much and after Twitter conversations, I figured it’d be appropriate to write one blog post on my silly addiction. The show is a simple concept that likes to throw in twists in attempts to “shake up” the competition and keep things interesting every season. As a girl whose dancing knowledge is no more than pretending to know what I should be looking for, watching dancing is a gorgeous thing. I’ve enjoyed the innovative routines, getting to “know” the pros and be awed by their talent, and of course, a chance every season to cheer on a favorite celebrity.  

The format is simple, each season introduces a new celebrity cast of twelve people who are paired with a pro;  this season has Olympic medalists, former child stars, a television game show host, musicians and more. Those couples perform a dance on their Monday night show that they are judged on by a panel of three, then every week, one couple is eliminated from competition combining judges scores and audience votes. Since I began watching the dances have gotten more intricate and even the variety has grown, now instead of just the beautiful ballroom routines that also include Latin dances, there is also contemporary, swing dances and even the occasional flamenco routine. Once the season has been plucked down to a limited number of couples, there are more challenges presented to them with multiple dances in one night, fusion dances or team routines, and this season there is going to be a “switch-up,” which will apparently pair up the celebrities with pros they were not originally paired with.

As a “reality” show, there is a lot about the competition that a viewer feels like is dramatized – for example, much as they may try to appear impartial, it doesn’t take long to realize the judges have their favorites and if they don’t like a contestant it doesn’t matter the effort they put in. Or putting the same pro dancers with someone who doesn’t have a chance to get into the finale whereas others always seem to get the new Dancing with the Stars sweetheart. Every episode usually some argument is captured – whether it be at the judges table, the rehearsal video or post performance interviews – and I usually roll my eyes at the least or yell at the TV over the silly drama (much like my Oscar experiences have been!) at worst but somehow I haven’t been able to stop watching. In a nutshell, this is Dancing with the Stars. There is a lot of high drama – from the contestants, pros and hosts alike, a lot of spray tan and sequins and best of all, a lot of beautiful dancing. And I’ve already found new favorites to cheer on. The season 18 cast is as follows.
 
Amy and Derek
 

SEAN AVERY partnered with KARINA SMIRNOFF
CANDACE CAMERON BURE partnered with MARK BALLAS
DREW CAREY partnered with CHERYL BURKE
MERYL DAVIS partnered with MAKSIM CHMERKOVSKIY
NENE LEAKES partnered with TONY DOVOLANI
JAMES MASLOW partnered with PETA MURGATROYD

DANICA MCKELLAR partnered with VALENTIN CHMERKOVSKIY
DIANA NYAD partnered HENRY BYALIKOV 
AMY PURDY partnered with DEREK HOUGH
CODY SIMPSON partnered WITNEY CARSON
CHARLIE WHITE partnered with SHARNA BURGESS
BILLY DEE WILLIAMS partnered with EMMA SLATER
 

Dancing with the Stars returns for its second episode tonight and first elimination of season 18.
 
(...until then, I shall be reading.)
Now I’ve admitted to my reality television weakness, what about you readers? Do you have a show you watch that gets under your skin but you just cannot give up? Share your reality TV guilty pleasures below!
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The Redemption of Henry Myers (2014)


Remember all of those wholesome Janette Oke movies – you know the ones based on her popular ‘Love Comes Softly’ saga? If you were a fan, a small glimpse of that is revived in this family driven drama.
 
Running from his former outlaw partners isn’t something Henry Myers (Drew Waters) planned on. His hiding place has been found out forcing him again flee living a lifeless existence haunted by a past that he cannot outrun but desperately wants peace from. Barely escaping his fate and with a gunshot wound in the back, he is taking in by a widow, Marilyn (Erin Bethea, Fireproof) and her two children. Brought back to full health by the kind family, Henry isn’t sure what to make of their resilient lifestyle, especially after their loss. Through it all, Marilyn holds her family together with faith and forgiveness, something Henry begins to believe in for himself until again his life is upset by a secret that will shake him.
 
When I was a kid, I binge watched westerns – John Wayne, Little House on the Prairie, Janette Oke, you name it and I was in for movie night. These days, I’m not as keen for a rip roarin’ old-fashioned western but that doesn’t mean I don’t like one on occasion. This movie is a more pleasant journey to the old West in the tradition of ‘Little House’ or Bonanza full of wholesome, moral values that any family looking for an adventures journey back in time will be sorry to miss.
 
The one flaw – or my personal gripe (that I don’t mean to harp on) that I often find in modern television westerns is the dialogue seems a mix of modern versus old phrases and because of that contemporary uses of words seems to stand out all the more. Second to that in this film specifically is how and who finds out some of Henry’s secrets – I understand why the story revealed what it did to characters but because of the hostility of this character, it’s difficult to accept that in one harrowing experience he’d have suddenly accepted such a future. Driving this script is its themes of poignancy, redemption and forgiveness – learning to let go of what is holding us in the past and realizing that just because mistakes may have ruled our life, and it doesn’t mean that in repentance we cannot find or feel God’s forgiveness and acceptance. Because of how wonderfully this film strives to be a breath-catching western that families can view together!
 
It’s most prized significance is its theme and it’s a source of gratefulness to discover hidden gems of a film that take the time to gift viewers with Truth – or even to “confront” us with it, and this film has certainly slowed down focus on exciting sequences to offer an alternative on how we usually watch this genre.
 
Catch the premiere of The Redemption of Henry Myers tonight on Hallmark Movie Channel Sunday March 23rd! View the promotional video below
 
(Parental review: there are some minor gunfights and a man is accidentally shot in a botched bank robbery – there is little or no blood.)
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When Calls the Heart, Season One Episodes 10-11 (2014)




At the risk of sounding repetitive, I have to confess that each time I sit down to write these out I tell myself this will be the last week I gush about When Calls the Heart (it's coming to an end, readers - your patience is noted and I'm grateful) because I think we’ve established my enjoyment of it and yet each time I watch a block of new episodes somehow my mind convinces me to do a write-up. Last week’s episode deals with the aftermath of Jack (Daniel Lissing) leaving and the impact it has on Elizabeth (Erin Krakow) and then builds to a climax that covers the conclusion of Julie Tatcher’s foolish insta-love saga when the Tolliver gang kidnap the Thatcher sisters and Julie’s sudden romance with ringleader Nate goes south. From there, things get dicey but happiness (of course) prevails! In episode eleven – ‘Rules of Engagement,’ Elizabeth rejoices in the return of Jack to Coal Valley only for her happiness to again be shattered when she comes face-to-face with the daring actress (Pascale Hutton), who incidentally happens to be Jack’s fiancĂ©e!


Elsewhere, Abigail (Lori Loughlin) is busy searching for the truth of the mine disaster and instead of squaring off alone with Henry Gowen (Martin Cummins), now she has the assistance of a Mountie inspector (Jack Wagner) to offer support and finally a man who listens to Abigail’s fears that the disaster was no accident. 

There is a lot of ground covered in these two episodes, not the least of which is more friction in the Elizabeth and Jack saga which frankly is tolerable (as a girl who sometimes grows weary of the back-and-forth romantic entanglements of television characters, this is saying a lot) because Erin and Daniel make their characters so likable to say nothing of the soul of this show being about this darling pair. There are definitely highlights and low points in this block of episodes, they were as follows.
 
+ Upping the excitement was something writers did well – episode ten (‘Love Comes First’) takes a very foolish girls “love” (really, I am sorry but I have to say it – Julie (Charlotte Hegele), what were you thinking?!) and turns it into an opportunity for some breath-catching excitement. The sort that families can still watch together without feeling uncomfortable or worried over what misfortunate will befall its captives.  

+ Elizabeth’s sighting of Jack upon his return to Coal Valley? Priceless.  
 
+ Much as her sassiness, girl-who-can-do-anything attitude may win over fans, I’m not overly fond of the worldly, Miss Rosemary LaVeaux. She’s one of those girls who fights for things she knows no longer wants her attention meaning she inserts herself into situations she has no business in – and really, she’s not the kind of character I’d have expected writers to pair with a certain hero.  
 
+ Excuse me, but inquiring minds want to know – where has Mr. marriage-and-Mounties-don’t-mix gone? Jack pushing Elizabeth away in the very beginning and his attitude in ‘Rules of Engagement’ don’t mesh though since this is about reviving his past, I’ll give him a pass – after all, we all change. *wink*  
 
+ Jack and Elizabeth may have stolen everyone's heart, however can we get a shout-out for Abigail…? Don’t you love seeing her maybe head towards a new kind of happy...

Edging towards the season finale – coming next Saturday! – means that there will likely be some resolution even if that comes in cliffhanger form. There is much to be decided in the final two hours and while some fans may again worry over all that happens in episode eleven, keep a good thought! Considering its source material and prior similar adaptations, writers have little choice but to leave fans smiling.

Share any thoughts you’d like about Hallmark’s newly arrived and much raved about series. Hearties, what are we thinking about all of these complications in Jack and Elizabeth's would-be courtship?
 
 When Calls the Heart, pilot filmWhen Calls the Heart, Episodes 1 and 2 

Catch episode eleven, ‘Rules of Engagement' on Saturday March 22nd on Hallmark Channel and see the promo video.

...and in case you missed episode ten, here's the 'Love Comes First' promo
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Crisis, Season One - Pilot (2014)


Though my television watching is limited to DVD sets (because who has time for commercials?), now and again, I’ll tune in to watch the premiere of a new series, this past weekend that separation happened to fall to NBC’s latest attempt to up their ratings.  
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Veronica Mars (2014)



Any television show that doesn’t conclude by tying up its loose ends is asking for trouble. Particularly those that have enjoyed a healthy by the numbers rank and a show that has been on long enough for fans to invest emotion, energy and time into a fandom – for this “cult classic” CW show, we “Marshmallows” haven’t ever been able to forget the tiny blonde who got into more trouble than her father could keep track of, had more boyfriends than we could keep straight and brought to justice quite the hardened criminals. She is Veronica Mars.

In high school, she was a rebel – a popular girl who was turned out of the wealthy kids circle which turned her into a tough-skinned, don’t-care-what-others-think girl who spent her summers and after school hours helping her P.I. father on cases instead of at the beach. Back then, she had a reputation to uphold and not many people liked her. Now, some ten years after leaving Neptune, she’s about to accept a high-powered job at a New York law firm and people tell her she’s a marshmallow, or so Veronica Mars (Kristin Bell) tells us.

This is all before she sees a news story about the murder of her former classmate, Carrie Bishop and the once-upon-a-time love of her life, Logan Echolls (Jason Dohring) questioned as a suspect in the murder. When the call comes in that he needs her help, Veronica cannot resist the pull to return. So with promises she’ll just visit with her dad (Enrico Colantoni), and help Logan weed out the good from the bad lawyers and their respective defenses, Veronica kisses her patient, long-term boyfriend Piz (Chris Lowell) good-bye and returns to a past she never thought she’d see again.

Aaaah, it’s here. The return of Veronica Mars and her motley gang of misfits may have been six years in the making, but it’s arrived. Because of this, beware the fan-girling. Based on Rob Thomas’ popular teen drama, Veronica Mars (which enjoyed an all-too-short three season run), this movie was definitely icing on the cake for fans and was made all the sweeter since it was funded by a kickstarter campaign – in other words, fans met and surpassed a fund set up to produce this film is record time which turned this maybe-someday dream into a very real this-is-happening scenario. Since I was looking for something new to watch, I jumped on the V. Mars fandom late last year, binge watched all of the episodes and found out the kickstarter campaign was over before I really knew it began. Needless to say when I watched the final third season episode, I didn’t realize that was all she wrote so knowing in the next five months a film was going to be released made this newbie fan thrilled to pieces.


Those of us who know and love the show will be glad to see many of its familiar faces return (in fact, perhaps the only one that doesn’t make an appearance is Duncan and his now ten-year-old daughter) including Weevil (Francis Capra), Wallace (Percy Daggs III), Mac (Tina Marjorino). All of these familiar favorites help ground the film (like really could there be a Veronica Mars reunion without Mac, Wallace, Keith, Weevil and company!?) and give fans the closure we needed. Many people were happy with all this two-hour film provided and enjoyed the “heavy” dose of Logan/Veronica screen time (the first time they lays eyes on each other… aww!) and while there was plenty of that, I also found more satisfaction in this film beyond that of a love/hate romantic entanglement finally finding a healthier footing. What was most pleasant to watch develop, grow, change was Veronica discovering her own peace. Last we saw her, she was cut up over ruining her dad’s campaign, trying to sort out complicated romantic emotions (i.e., her boyfriend coming face to face with the realization that Logan would always have a bigger part of her part than he did) and trying to decide what she should do with her life in a career. Seeing her come into her own was in and of itself worth watching the movie, no matter what else happened. 

So what else did happen? Oh, yes! That certain love/hate, will-they-or-won’t-they-end-up-together Veronica and Logan relationship. So, yes, there is that. I have to confess there were times I adored Logan in the show (which, by the way is fun but sadly had too many instances of adult innuendo to make it even close to Nancy Drew family appropriate) and others when I wanted Veronica to break it off and stay away from the dude who oftentimes brought nothing but grief into her life. One thing I was impressed by was once Veronica and Logan quit feuding, he was protective of Veronica to a fault and that carries through in this script. Viewers experience a more grown-up, mature version of Logan in this story and best of all, it’s one that I (so far) have no qualms about getting behind. People do get hurt in the film, we underestimate some characters and learn not to trust others but most of all, Thomas and the cast (who I am thrilled to pieces agreed to return – without them, this would have been nothing) did a bang-up job of crafting this into an entertaining “conclusion.”

The whip-smart dialogue is still here, the humor is sensational (though the ladies behind me didn’t think it as funny as the show), there is a lot of excitement (suspense is definitely heightened in big-screen format!) and though there are bittersweet emotions, really if this is to be the last we see of Veronica – according to an enthusiastic cast, a great success at the box office and Thomas, there will be a sequel – it was satisfactory. Backers who made this possible should be proud. It's a masterpiece in the world of Veronica Mars and marshmallows, you don’t want to miss out on returning to Neptune. It’s kind of like a walk with the best friend you haven’t seen in years – and easily, you fall right back into the rhythm as if no time at all has passed. 

(Parental review: there are several instances of sexual innuendo including crude terms/references [like a crude hand gesture], an old sex tape that crops up as an embarrassment to its victim – we see snippets of the tape, another person asks her about it to which she wonders about being questioned about “STDs.” There is also one other sex tape we briefly glimpse [just the couple’s legs], there are references made to anatomy and one minor character is a homosexual [there’s nothing beyond conversation]. A woman is sleeping with a man after being blackmailed, another scene involves some making out, and an invitation to stay the night before the camera cuts away. There’s a use of the F-word, along with substitutions plus other minor profanities. A woman is shot, another man is badly injured in a car wreck [someone dies as a result of that accident], another person is killed from an overdose. There is some drinking. The film is rated PG13.)
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Cover Reveal: Love's Promises


Happy Friday, friends!
 
Today, thanks to Amber, there is a cover reveal the blogosphere is going to share with you. These are always fun and so easy to put together with the organization and information Amber is sure to give us in each reveal packet. Today's feature is Sandra Leesmith who has already put out several novels that receive great reviews - and in fact, I have her last on sitting on my self and am *dying* to read it. It's one that will go on my summer TBR list - for sure! Today, she is revealing the cover for her latest and coinciding with that is the release of her new novel, now available for purchase on Amazon Kindle.
 
Before the big reveal, let's talk about the author, designer and the book:
 
About the Author: Sandra Leesmith loves to travel in her RV and explore all of nature’s beauty, discover America’s history, and fellowship with the wonderful people she meets while on the road. She enjoys reading, writing, hiking, swimming, and pickleball. Learn more about Sandra and her books at her website. About the Cover Designer: Lena lives in a scenic small town in Massachusetts with her husband, two kids, and a very spoiled Black Lab. She writes fiction for young adults, mostly light fantasy with a healthy dose of "sigh-worthy" romance. Visit her online.
 
About the Cover Designer: LENA GOLDFINCH writes fantasy and romance for teens and adults. She's a sucker for a good old-fashioned romance, whether it's a novel, novella, or short story, young adult or adult, fantasy or realistic, contemporary or historical. Elements of romance, fantasy, and mystery have a way of creeping into her writing, even when she's writing something light and contemporary like her latest releases, Haunting Joy and Take a Picture. Lena has been a finalist in several national writing contests, including the RWA Golden Heart and ACFW Genesis contests. She lives in a scenic small town in Massachusetts with her husband, two kids, and a very spoiled Black Lab. Learn more about Lena and her books at her online home.
 
Book Synopsis: For Monica Scott, building her late father’s house at Lake Tahoe isn’t an option—it’s a necessary distraction from confusing memories and an uncertain future. But a handsome planner working for the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA) is keeping Monica from moving forward with the project. Never mind that he’s young and charming with a great sense of humor. No one is going to stop Monica from making her father’s dream—and her own—a reality.

All Greg Linsey wants is for his work to mean something. His job at TRPA gives him the opportunity to fight for the environment he loves and make a difference in his small corner of the world. But with the sophisticated Monica Scott’s arrival, his dedication is tested as never before, especially when Monica turns to his unscrupulous nemesis for assistance.
As Greg and Monica’s animosity turns into something far sweeter, can they learn to accept each other’s promises and avoid the growing danger to their lives and hearts? 
...and now, for the moment you've been waiting for...
 
Isn't it pretty!? Immediately when I opened the file, my first thought was how well this cover matched Sandra's last two novels - specifically Love's Refuge since I own it and also participated in its cover reveal. What I love best about this series of covers is the tender romanticism about them - they instantly invite the reader into their world because they have such a "soft," sweet look about them and as a romantic, that's what captures my fancy most. Talking just about Love's Promises, I love the colors! They're fabulous - that dark blue mellowed out with a splash of orange/yellow is lovely. The expressions on the characters faces I suspect are also telling - he has a smile that proves truthful to the character description (a great sense of humor!) and her look is one more cautious which is also befitting of her personality (confusing memories and uncertain future).
Take a look at all three covers below.
 

Enter the themed giveaway to go with the reveal:
a Rafflecopter giveaway Congrats again to Sandra on another release! Wishing you all the best with this new novel.

Leave a comment for Sandra, friends about your thoughts for her new novel. :)
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The Lady Vanishes (2013)


The Lady Vanishes

The more productions I watch set in the 1930 era, the more I am convinced it’s “my era.” It’s the timeframe I seem to love most that once upon a time likely came in last. I’m not sure if the change came about because “bonnet” costume drama was so dominant and this is a new world to discover or if I like the sassiness that seems to accompany this era, either way, fans of this age or classy mystery will want to see the latest BBC masterpiece, which is now finally on DVD in the states.  

Along with her young group of friends, wealthy socialite Iris Carr (Tuppence Middleton) is currently travelling by train through foreign countries with scenic stops along the way and days full of leisure. Their latest stop is at a quint hotel where the group meets a host of fellow guests including the quiet Reverend Barnes and his wife (Pip Torres, Sandy McDade), a mysterious couple (Julian Rhind-Tutt, Keeley Hawes) who have secrets and the prudish, gossip-y travelling companions, sisters Rose and Evelyn Floodporter (Gemma Jones, Stephanie Cole).

After an unpleasant confrontation, Iris decides she’s had enough of her ner-do-well friends and elects to remain behind while her party travels ahead. A day alone, wandering the countryside makes Iris realize how fragile her position is – alone with no family but money to her name, she decides to re-join her party a day prior to when all of the hotel guests are scheduled to depart.

Iris barely manages to board the train in time only to find that every single one of the hotel guests is also travelling on this train. Frustrated over a language barrier and feeling the aftereffects of nasty fall, Iris is befriended by a kindly Englishwoman woman named Miss Froy (Selina Cadell) only to awake from sleep to find her companion missing. Confused over fellow passengers claim there is no such person, Iris catches the attention of a young university student, Max (Tom Hughes) and his professor (Alex Jennings) who try to help sort out Iris’ hysterical claims. The more she searches to find out the fate of Miss Froy, the more her existence is erased – is Iris mistaken or are there mysterious games afoot? 

Only lately released in the states (this past month, I believe). This movie is actually very good and was over far too soon for my pleasure. It begins introducing us to a heroine who is anything but – she’s a selfish, spoiled young woman who though alone in life hasn’t really a care who she hurts so long as she can live in the style she has become accustomed to. Iris takes some time to warm up to though her spunk is immediately fun and of course, eventually when the mystery gets rolling, I was sold on this Hitchcock-esque style of story-telling. 
 
Featuring a familiar array of British talent, this was the first time I’d seem Middleton in anything and I must say I was very impressed. She not only physically fit the era (her personality and looks suited the time picture perfectly), but how she played the character was a fabulous study in brilliance. There’s a dash of romance also which serves to lighten the mood of a script that does get a bit dreary on occasion, wondering into just a smidgeon of the macabre. Anyone who isn’t fond of an ambiguous ending should probably skip over this on though, uncharacteristic of my preference, I actually thought the ending was darling. It was entertaining, upbeat and dare I say it, full of promise. That’s good enough for me. 

Rounding out the good, the costumes are naturally stylish and pretty as is the countryside scenes which I suppose bookends the story considering the entire film basically is confined to a train. There are some odd moments and a back-and-forth question wavering between sanity and insanity means this may not be a film for everyone, however if you like British mystery, you should enjoy this one. It’s gutsy in surprising ways, has a fabulous wind-up to its climax and as previously gushed over, the cast is phenomenal. With all that to its credit, there isn’t much more to be said about this. Except for maybe, where's the sequel?
 
Have a look at the trailer.


(Parental review, the film rates a PG. there is an extra-marital affair rumor and perhaps a minor innuendo, a woman accuses a girl of flirting/sleeping with her husband. A woman is taken against her will, while drugged and another is hidden away, tied up.)

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Cover Candy, Edition 18


Hey, friends! There are some new gorgeous cover arts that I've run across and as it has become a fun "meme" (of a sort) here on Dreaming Under the Same Moon, I thought I'd share another version of it - and I promise this will be the last for a bit. This time around, I found some "cool" concepts - mainly as regards the secular young adult fiction (again, as always I am not endorsing all of these books, just crushing on the designs) and am also adding in some that I put into "Edition 17" late and some of you may have missed. With that out of the way, let's begin!

 
Synopsis: She's written a recipe for her future, but does it include love? Katherine 'Kat' Varland is a small town girl, born and raised---and every day, her dreams of owning her own bakery get further away. She has no money, and the cupcake shop she bakes for, Sweetie Pies, seems to get smaller and smaller. Kat might be the sweetheart of Bayou Bend, Louisiana, but she longs to make a name for herself where she can flourish as Kat---not as the girl baking someone else's recipes. As head coach for the Bayou Bend championship high school football team, Lucas Brannen is used to winning---everything except his best friend's heart. He finally gathers the courage to make a gesture and show Kat his feelings by signing her up for the popular reality TV show Cupcake Combat. But his plan backfires after he realizes the cash prize for the winner also includes a one-year baking contract at one of New York City's most famous pastry houses. The situation grows sticky when Kat enlists Lucas's help as her baking assistant for the show. Lucas is torn between helping Kat live her dream and selfishly wanting to keep her in town. His plan has always been a dozen acres of land and a farmhouse in Bayou Bend---but Kat is blinded by the stars in her eyes. Will Lucas and Kat risk their chance at love in order to achieve their individual dreams? Or will they find that sometimes the most delicious happily-ever-afters begin and end in the same place?
- Amazon
 
September 2014

 
Persephone's Fugitive by Dianna T. Benson
 
Synopsis: Paramedic Sara Dyer finds herself under gunpoint by her patient, charged murderer Jason Keegan. A standoff ensues between Keegan and the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service.
A known explosives expert, Keegan threatens to blow them both up since he’d rather die than live life in a prison cell. As he plans to escape Cayman and disappear off radar, Sara struggles to once again trust in God’s protection in a deadly situation. Help from an atheist turns her struggle into a lure away from her faith. - Amazon
 
November 2014
 

Promise to Protect by Patricia Bradley
 
Synopsis: Acting Sheriff Ben Logan hasn't heard from Leigh Somerall in a very long time, but it doesn't mean he can get her--or their whirlwind romance of ten years ago--out of his head. When she calls out of the blue, it is with a strange request to protect her brother, Tony. When Tony dies just days later, Ben is charged with a different task--protecting Leigh and her nine-year-old son, TJ, from the killers. But how can Ben keep an eye on Leigh if she's doing everything in her power to avoid him? And could the secret that Leigh is keeping change Ben's life forever?
- Amazon
 
September 2014


At Bluebonnet Lake by Amanda Cabot

*excited about this one since Amanda has said it's too be a contemporary!

Synopsis: Marketing maven Kate Sherwood's world is fast-paced, challenging, and always changing. The last thing she wants to do is slow down to a crawl at Rainbow's End, a dilapidated resort in the Texas Hill Country. But she cannot deny her ailing grandmother's request to visit the place where she and her deceased husband spent one glorious week (albeit fifty years ago). There Kate meets Greg Vange, the resort's handyman. But there's more to Greg than meets the eye--billions more, in fact, as he recently sold his successful software company and is at the resort in search of what's next for his life.

Kate isn't looking for romance, but she can't deny the sparks of attraction that fly every time she and Greg are together. She even starts to see potential in the rundown resort. Could there be a future there? Or will Kate's long-sought promotion take her back to the big city?
- Amazon

October 2014


Trading Secrets by Melody Carlson

Synopsis: Back in fifth grade, Micah Knight got an Amish pen pal, and over the years, they've exchanged many letters--and many secrets. At age seventeen, Micah finally has the chance to meet her pen pal face-to-face. The only problem is that because of confusion about her name when the pen pals were assigned, her pen pal was a boy, Zack Miller. And all this time, Micah's never told Zack that she's actually a girl! While she wants nothing more than to experience life on Zack's Amish farm, she's afraid he'll hate her for deceiving him all these years. But she makes up her mind to face the music--and that's where the fun really begins. - Amazon
October 2014

 
Prudence by Gail Carriger
 
Synopsis: Not Available
 
March 2015

Magnolia Market by Judy Christie
 
Synopsis: When socialite Avery Saucier and blue-collar widow Trish Manning literally run into each other at the corner of Trumpet and Vine, a less-than-friendly relationship develops. But they have more in common than they want to admit: both have lost their husbands--one to divorce, the other to a heart attack--and both have lost their livelihoods. With hostility, desperation, and a budget tighter than Avery's skinny jeans, the women decide to go into business together selling mouth-watering biscuits from a rundown store across the street from the popular Sweet Olive Folk Art Gallery. With a gift for baking and making people feel welcome, they transform their Magnolia Market into a regionally famous 'biscuit boutique.' As Avery and Trish become increasingly involved in the life of the Trumpet and Vine community, they find themselves becoming matchmakers for the local clientele. But before she realizes it, Avery herself may be the one to have found her perfect match. - Amazon 
September 2014
 

Nowhere to Turn by Lynette Eason
 
Synopsis: The day Danielle Harding takes her 11-year-old son, Simon, and flees from her abusive husband, is the same day Kurt Harding dies. A relieved Dani believes she and her son are finally safe--but in reality, the danger has just begun. When Kurt was alive, he took something important to a mysterious person. That person wants the item back and believes Dani now has it. As she and her son run for their lives, they have nowhere to turn, until she hires Adam Buchanan of Operation Refuge and goes into hiding. Unfortunately, she won't be able to hide for long . . .
- Amazon
 
September 2014

Love's Fortune by Laura Frantz
 
Synopsis: Sheltered since birth at her Kentucky home, Rowena Ballantyne has heard only whispered rumors of her grandfather Silas’s vast fortune and grand manor in Pennsylvania. Then her father, Silas’s long-estranged son, Ansel, receives a rare letter summoning him to New Hope. Rowena makes the journey with him and quickly finds herself in a whole new world— filled with family members she’s never met, dances she’s never learned, and a new side to the father she thought she knew. As she struggles to fit in during their extended stay, she finds a friend in James Sackett, the most valued steamship pilot of the Ballantyne’s shipping line. Even with his help, Rowena feels she may never be comfortable in high society. Will she go her own way . . . to her own peril?

With her signature attention to historical detail and emotional depth, Laura Frantz brings 1850s Pennsylvania alive with a tender story of loss, love, and loyalty in this final installment of the Ballatyne saga. - LauraFrantz.com
 
September 2014


Deceived by Irene Hannon
Synopsis: For four years, Kate Marshall has been grieving the loss of her husband and their three-year-old son in a boating accident. But when she spots a familiar-looking child on an escalator in the mall, she is convinced it is the son she thought was dead. With police skeptical of her story, she turns to private investigator Connor Sullivan. The former Secret Service agent is dubious but agrees to investigate. Digging into the case he discovers that the incident may have been no accident at all. But if Kate's son is alive, someone is intent on keeping him hidden--and may be willing to go to lethal lengths to protect a sinister secret.

As Irene Hannon's many fans have come to expect, Deceived is filled with complex characters, unexpected twists, and a riveting plot line that accelerates to an explosive finish. - Amazon
 
October 2014
 
The Ring of Morgana by Donna Hosie
 
Synopsis: In a brand new series, Donna Hosie revisits Logres with THE CHILDREN OF CAMELOT.

Sixteen-year-old Mila Roth wants to be normal. It’s a phrase that has been drilled into her by her mother since she was born.

But Mila Roth is anything but normal. For sixteen years her parents have hidden a secret from her. For Mila was born one thousand years ago in the land of Logres, and far from being a math teacher and a housewife, Mila’s parents are the awakened King Arthur and Gorian druid queen, Morgana.

Two worlds, one thousand years apart. And those worlds are about to collide.

The spirit of the malevolent Lady of the Lake has been contained for sixteen years in the fabled Ring of Morgana. When the ring curses Mila’s younger sister, Lilly, the Roth family has no choice but to return Mila to the land of her birth as they face a battle against time itself.

Accompanied by her best friend, Rustin, Mila will have to decide whether to defy those she loves in order to save her sister. Should she trust the Gorian druids and the mysterious Melehan? What is the true cost to Mila’s heart as she strives to master the purple flame? And why have her mother and father denied the truth of her origins for so long?

For she alone has the combined power of royalty and druid magic within her.

And now only Mila can save Lilly and Logres. - Goodreads
 
June 2014

 
The Hunt by Stacey Kade
 
Synopsis: Ariane Tucker has finally escaped GTX, the research facility that created her. While on the run, Zane Bradshaw is the only person she can trust. He knows who-and what-she is and still wants to be part of her life.

But accepting Zane's help means putting him in danger.

Dr. Jacobs, head of GTX, is not the only one hunting for Ariane. Two rival corporations have their sights set on taking down their competition. Permanently. To protect Zane and herself, Ariane needs allies. She needs the other hybrids. The hybrids who are way more alien and a lot less human. Can Ariane win them over before they turn on her? Or will she be forced to choose sides, to decide who lives and who dies? - Goodreads
 
April 2014


This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

Synopsis: Jubilee Chase and Flynn Cormac should never have met.

Lee is captain of the forces sent to Avon to crush the terraformed planet's rebellious colonists, but she has her own reasons for hating the insurgents.

Rebellion is in Flynn's blood. His sister died in the original uprising against the powerful corporate conglomerate that rules Avon with an iron fist. These corporations make their fortune by terraforming uninhabitable planets across the universe and recruiting colonists to make the planets livable, with the promise of a better life for their children. But they never fulfilled their promise on Avon, and decades later, Flynn is leading the rebellion.

Desperate for any advantage against the military occupying his home, Flynn does the only thing that makes sense when he and Lee cross paths: he returns to base with her as prisoner. But as his fellow rebels prepare to execute this tough-talking girl with nerves of steel, Flynn makes another choice that will change him forever. He and Lee escape base together, caught between two sides in a senseless war. - Amazon.com

November 2014

 
 
Synopsis: Letitia holds nothing more dear than the papers that prove she is no longer a slave. They may not cause white folks to treat her like a human being, but at least they show she is free. She trusts in those words she cannot read--as she is beginning to trust in Davey Carson, an Irish immigrant cattleman who wants her to come west with him.

Nancy Hawkins is loathe to leave her settled life for the treacherous journey by wagon train, but she is so deeply in love with her husband that she knows she will follow him anywhere--even when the trek exacts a terrible cost.

Betsy is a Kalapuya Indian, the last remnant of a once proud tribe in the Willamette Valley in Oregon territory. She spends her time trying to impart the wisdom and ways of her people to her grandson. But she will soon have another person to care for.

As season turns to season, suspicion turns to friendship, and fear turns to courage, three spirited women will discover what it means to be truly free in a land that makes promises it cannot fulfill. This multilayered story from bestselling author Jane Kirkpatrick will grip readers' hearts and minds as they travel with Letitia on the dusty and dangerous Oregon trail into the boundless American West. - Amazon
 
September 2014


 
Dearest by Alethea Kontis
 
Synopsis: Readers met the Woodcutter sisters (named after the days of the week) in Enchanted and Hero. In this delightful third book, Alethea Kontis weaves together some fine-feathered fairy tales to focus on Friday Woodcutter, the kind and loving seamstress. When Friday stumbles upon seven sleeping brothers in her sister Sunday's palace, she takes one look at Tristan and knows he's her future. But the brothers are cursed to be swans by day. Can Friday's unique magic somehow break the spell?
- Goodreads
 
February 2015

Finding Mercy by Michael Landon Jr. and Cindy Kelley
Synopsis: Not Available
 
October 2014

Surprised by Love by Julie Lessman
 
Synopsis: From ugly duckling to swimming with the swans …

But is she over her head when it comes to love?
 
Shy and unattractive as a child, Megan McClare has always been teased by her classmates. But when she returns home from her senior year in Paris, the wallflower has suddenly blossomed into a beauty. With ambitions to become a lawyer or doctor, Megan accepts an internship at the District Attorney’s office only to discover that she will be working with Devin Caldwell, a boy who mercilessly mocked her at school—and with whom she was hopelessly enamored. She turns to her dear friend Bram Hughes for support and advice. But Bram’s vision is clouded by his sudden unwelcome attraction to a girl he had always thought of as a little sister. He advises forgiveness, but can he forgive himself for pushing the woman he loves into the arms of another man? - Julie Lessman
 
October 2014


Falconer by Elizabeth May

Synopsis: Heiress. Debutant. Murderer. A new generation of heroines has arrived.

Edinburgh, Scotland, 1844

Lady Aileana Kameron, the only daughter of the Marquess of Douglas, was destined for a life carefully planned around Edinburgh’s social events – right up until a faery killed her mother.

Now it’s the 1844 winter season and Aileana slaughters faeries in secret, in between the endless round of parties, tea and balls. Armed with modified percussion pistols and explosives, she sheds her aristocratic facade every night to go hunting. She’s determined to track down the faery who murdered her mother, and to destroy any who prey on humans in the city’s many dark alleyways.

But the balance between high society and her private war is a delicate one, and as the fae infiltrate the ballroom and Aileana’s father returns home, she has decisions to make. How much is she willing to lose – and just how far will Aileana go for revenge?

- Goodreads

May 2014
 
Emeralds and Ashes  by Leila Rasheed
 
Synopsis: In the third and final book in our romantic historical YA series, heroes emerge and tragedies unfold as the servant and gentry at Somerton Court face World War I.

The murmurs of war have turned into a bloody conflict that will touch the lives of every member of the Somerton household.
 
Despite the pleas of his family, Lord Averley steps forward as soon as the call is made for men to fight the Western front. Mere weeks later, the news arrives: Lord Averley has been killed in the Battle of Marne. Without an obvious heir, Somerton falls into chaos. Half of the staff has already left for the war or industrial work.

Sebastian Templeton can no longer show his face in public. Ever since the publication of a now infamous photo of him and his former valet embracing, an unspeakable word has followed Sebastian everywhere--a word with the power to destroy a man's reputation forever. Knowing charges and a trial will soon follow, Sebastian does the only thing he can think of to escape: he volunteers for a war he feels is senseless and despicable, leaving beyind the boy he loves, but knows can never have.

Meanwhile, after a whirlwind romance with the Duke of Huntly, Rose Averley finds herself trapped in Egypt when war breaks out during their honeymoon. Alexander vows to return Rose to home and safety, but with no end in sight, Rose knows she cannot sit idle as those around her suffer.

In the final installment of the At Somerton series, the war to end all wars will take an unbearable toll on the household and leave each member forever changed. - Goodreads
 
January 2015

 
Invaded by Melissa Landers
 
Synopsis: The romantic sequel to Alienated takes long-distance relationships to a new level as Cara and Aelyx long for each other from opposite ends of the universe...until a threat to both their worlds reunites them.

Cara always knew life on planet L’eihr would be an adjustment. With Aelyx, her L’eihr boyfriend, back on Earth, working to mend the broken alliance between their two planets, Cara is left to fend for herself at a new school, surrounded by hostile alien clones. Even the weird dorm pet hates her.

Things look up when Cara is appointed as human representative to a panel preparing for a human colony on L’eihr. A society melding their two cultures is a place where Cara and Aelyx could one day make a life together. But with L’eihr leaders balking at granting even the most basic freedoms, Cara begins to wonder if she could ever be happy on this planet, even with Aelyx by her side.

Meanwhile, on Earth, Aelyx, finds himself thrown into a full-scale PR campaign to improve human-L’eihr relations. Humans don’t know that their very survival depends on this alliance: only Aelyx’s people have the technology to fix the deadly contamination in the global water supply that human governments are hiding. Yet despite their upper hand, the leaders of his world suddenly seem desperate to get humans on their side, and hardly bat an eye at extremists’ multiple attempts on Aelyx’s life.

The Way clearly needs humans’ help . . . but with what? And what will they ask for in return?
 - Goodreads
 
February 2015




Far from You by Tess Sharpe

April 2014

 
Illusions of Fate by Kiersten White
 
Synopsis: Downton Abbey meets Cassandra Clare in this lush, romantic fantasy from New York Times bestselling author Kiersten White.

“I did my best to keep you from crossing paths with this world. And I shall do my best to protect you now that you have.”

Jessamin has been an outcast since she moved from her island home of Melei to the dreary country of Albion. Everything changes when she meets Finn, a gorgeous, enigmatic young lord who introduces her to the secret world of Albion’s nobility, a world that has everything Jessamin doesn’t—power, money, status…and magic. But Finn has secrets of his own, dangerous secrets that the vicious Lord Downpike will do anything to possess. Unless Jessamin, armed only with her wits and her determination, can stop him.

Kiersten White captured readers’ hearts with her New York Times bestselling Paranormalcy trilogy and its effortless mix of magic and real-world teenage humor. She returns to that winning combination of wit, charm, and enchantment in Illusions of Fate, a sparkling and romantic new novel perfect for fans of Cassandra Clare, The Madman’s Daughter, and Libba Bray. - Goodreads
 
September 2014
 
 
Don't Touch by Rachel M. Wilson
 
Synopsis: Caddie has a history of magical thinking—of playing games in her head to cope with her surroundings—but it’s never been this bad before.

When her parents split up, don’t touch becomes Caddie’s mantra. Maybe if she keeps from touching another person’s skin, Dad will come home. She knows it doesn’t make sense, but her games have never been logical. Soon, despite Alabama’s humidity, she’s covering every inch of skin and wearing evening gloves to school.

And that’s where things get tricky. Even though Caddie’s the new girl, it’s hard to play off her compulsions as artistic quirks. Friends notice things. Her drama class is all about interacting with her scene partners, especially Peter, who’s auditioning for the role of Hamlet. Caddie desperately wants to play Ophelia, but if she does, she’ll have to touch Peter…and kiss him. Part of Caddie would love nothing more than to kiss Peter—but the other part isn’t sure she’s brave enough to let herself fall.
- Rachel Wilson
 
September 2014
 
...and now it's your turn!
 
Which covers or stories captured your fancy? Do share!
 
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