Monday, July 29, 2013

Love In The Heart Of The Summer - The July Edition Of Booyah! Books

 Lisa and the staff from The Novel Approach are back for another edition of Booyah Books!

Hello again, everyone, and welcome to this month's edition of our Top Reads for July!

We've got another great list to offer up, and hope that if you haven't read any, or all of them yet, we'll have at least helped you find some great books to round out your summer reading list. So, here they are.

The first of the bunch comes from Lynn, with Allison Cassatta's Pride: Dear Diary Book Two:

"Dear Diary: Pride is the sequel to Dear Diary and picks right up where the first one left off. We last saw Josh and Chris as they were going to the prom. But what happened after that?

I believe Allison Cassatta gave us a perfect balance of sweet romance, brutal honesty, and a dose of reality that we all need from time to time."

You can read the rest of Lynn's review and find buy links HERE

Jackie's picks for July include a debut novel, as well as a Young Adult Paranormal romance.

Here's a little of what she had to say about Lane Hayes' Better Than Good

"There is a HEA, but it is hard fought. The sex in the book was wonderfully written and their feelings for each other were clear in every scene they shared. In the end Matt has a hard time expressing his emotions, but he gets a little help from Elton John and Aaron’s friends to get his feelings across. I highly recommend this book and I hope to see more from the author."

You can read the rest of Jackie's review and find buy links HERE

Her second choice for July is Jeff Erno's Forever Young:

"I hope that Jeff Erno makes this a series because there are so many wonderful plot lines, new characters introduced right at the end and some surprise reunions. There are minimal descriptive sexual situations in this book, but the love that is shared between the couples is tangible. The final battle scene is very violent and bloody, and I loved every second of it. There are no sparkly vampires brooding in this book, but it does have a great love story. There is a HEA, but I for one hope that it is To Be Continued……

This book is well written, the characters are well fleshed out and there are some very interesting plot twists to keep you on your toes. Highly recommend this book. It should be on everyone’s summer reading list if it isn’t already."

You can read the rest of Jackie's review and find buy links HERE

Next up is Bruce's pick, and Taylor V. Donovan's Disasterology 101:

"Cedric has to be one of the most memorable characters I have encountered in a very long time. In fact, just thinking about him makes me want to squeal like a 12 year old girl at a One Direction concert. He is handsome, quirky, and severely disabled. Yet, Cedric struggles to make himself better to be with the man that he loves. The palpable anxiety that Donavan is able to manufacture in this novel surrounding Cedric’s OCD is like nothing I’ve ever encountered before. The anxiety practically leaps from the page and as a reader I found myself struggling with Cedric to make himself better so he could live a more normal life in order to be with Kevin."

You can read the rest of Bruce's review and find buy links HERE

Tina's choices this month come from authors Brad Boney and Jamie Fessenden. First up is Brad's The Return:

"If you love music, if you love love, if you believe in the power of love to overcome anything put in its path, you will love this book. If you read and loved The Nothingness of Ben, you will love this book, if for no other reason than catching up with the first set of fascinating people Brad Boney introduced us to. I fiercely (thank you thesaurus for giving me a word even stronger than “highly”) recommend this book to everyone."

You can read the rest of Tina's review and find buy links HERE

And Jamie Fessenden's Billy's Bones

"Mr. Fessenden treated the subject matter and the victim so tenderly, almost lovingly, that it made me feeling some bad stuff not so bad. I think it took balls to take on a subject so difficult to write about. I don’t know Mr. Fessenden’s personal history, but if he hasn’t experienced childhood sexual trauma and it’s aftermath, he is a deeply insightful and empathetic human being. This book deserves well more than five stars. It IS an emotional read. It is also so satisfying.

Recommended in the highest way possible."

You can read the rest of Tina's review and find buy links HERE

And finally, my choices for this month include a sequel and a book that was recommended to me by Elisa Rolle. 

First comes Edmond Manning's King Mai, the second book in the Lost and Founds series: "King Mai is a celebration of the contextual, a flow of poetic imagery and wordsmithing abundant with emotion. It is metaphorical and it is literal, it is more than romance and no less than the text of a master alchemist who has spun a love story that defies labeling. Edmond Manning has done it again, delivered an unequivocal reading experience that has knitted itself into King Perry, though the whole cloth of the Lost and Founds is a work-in-progress that is looping and stitching itself together, one Found King at a time, one Vin revelation at a time"

You can read the rest of my review and find buy links HERE

And last, but certainly not least, is Elisa's recommendation Atom Heart John Beloved by Luke Hartwell (Along with a companion piece, Nathan's Story.)

"These are not books for the squeamish; they are books to be experienced as well as read. The parts and pieces of the story are sometimes disturbing, and sometimes the experience will leave you questioning the definition of love, but in the end, they will leave you with the belief that it can be found in the one who makes you feel at home.

I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend these books wholeheartedly, if not for the content that some readers may find disturbing. I will say that every word on every page, as painful as they sometimes are, are one-hundred percent necessary to the story, never gratuitous, so my recommendation comes with that caveat. For me, it simply made the experience all the more rewarding."

You can read the rest of my review and find the buy links HERE

And that does it for the July edition of Booyah! Books. Until next month, happy reading!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Countdown to Friday!

So I'm getting excited! This Friday the 19th Parting Shot (Duncan and Aaron's book) is out and I am popping down to Atlanta to see the DSP gang at RWA. I will also be spending lots of quality time with Amy Lane in the car ride back. Its a looooong drive home to Lexington so it's lucky we always have lots to talk about.

And this week got interesting. Today I was at  
The Purple Fantasy Den with Vicktor Alexander answering reader questions which was really fun. Tomorrow, Tuesday the 16th, Duncan and Aaron will be over at The Novel Approach answering Lisa Horan's questions and there is a contest underway over at Stumbling Over Chaos for Parting Shot so please hop over and throw your hat in the ring. I hope everyone else is having just as good a week!

Monday, July 1, 2013

So, Apparently Booyah! And June Go Together Like Love And Great Books!

I'm always happy to have Lisa from  
The Novel Approach here on my blog. 

I'm excited to announce that The Novel Approach staff has grown again, and because of that, we have more book picks to share with you than ever before. In fact, this month's list is so extensive that we're changing things up a bit. Um... read: being lazy. ::shrugs:: So rather than write up an a blurb for each book, we'll give you a sneaky-peeky and then link to the original review at TNA for the full lowdown and buy links, because Mary said I could and she's the boss of me. :)

Now, without further ado, here are the books we want to celebrate in June!

First up is our newest reviewer Jackie, who not only has picks of her own, but is also presenting a pick by her 12 yr. old daughter Savannah, who was our very special guest reviewer with Jamie Mayfields:

Choices: "I think kids should read these books if they are gay or if they are not. For gay kids, they can learn there is always someone that loves them no matter what. For the kids who aren’t gay, well, maybe they could see how bad they hurt people with their words. Even in 5th grade I heard people say “fag” and “homo”. We aren’t allowed to use words like that in my house and now I understand why. Words can hurt as much as hands or fists. So we should be careful how we use them."

Click HERE for Savannah's full review and buy links

Moral Authority by Jacob Z. Flores: "One thing I did take away from this book was a quote from a surprising source, a high ranking officer in the K3s said this and it just struck me as a divine truth: The term is subjective to the whim of whatever individual espouses it. Morality means different things to different people. You just have to follow in step with what the majority thinks is moral, and you will do fine. I will leave you with these parting words and I will urge you to read this book. I went into this without being sure if I would make it thru the book, and now I am glad that I didn’t miss it."

Click HERE for Jackie's full review and buy links

Forever Promised by Amy Lane: "This book was truly a happy book. Yes, there are some sad parts, yes there are some emotional parts. Most of my tears were happy tears. I guess if I have to give up the guys and gals from Promise Rock, I can rest assured that they are all happy, they are all loved and their story will live on with the next generation."

Click HERE for Jackie's full review and buy links

And now for Bruce's pick of the month, the book that blew him away was,

Raining Men by Rick R. Reed: "In Raining Men, there is a plot with plenty of substance about a main character that makes one examine themselves, and if not themselves, helps them to understand others. Not trying to give too much away, yes, there is romance in the end, but it is not the lead character in this fabulous novel. Instead, it is the struggle of a person discovering himself, healing, and becoming a whole person.

This novel is truly a remarkable work and deserves plenty of accolades. I am sure that it will receive many."

Click HERE for Bruce's full review and buy links

Next up are Tina's top picks for the month:

Catch My Breath by M.J. O'Shea: "It is so empowering to these boys to take control of their own destinies. O’Shea appears to be taking them by the hand and leading them into adulthood. Her masterful hand brings things back to center. Everyone is back where they belong. It is amazing how deep into the emotional upheaval O’Shea was able to take me. I loved every minute of it. Even the ones I hated! This is a great book. A must read."

Click HERE for Tina's full review and buy links

Self Preservation by Ethan Day: "The over-arching observation for me in Self Preservation is that Ethan Day injects humor into every possible little nook and cranny that he can find. He had me laughing out loud so many times! But he also had me crying. I think that an author capable of causing such heights of humor and happiness is equally capable of causing us to tap deeply into our inner well of sadness. Not all authors choose to do that. Ethan Day is one of the best at it. He elects to wield every emotion at his disposal, and uses them like stealth bomber. I’m laughing, and then, wait, what? Why am I crying? Ohhh. I get it, that’s funny but it’s so sad, too. The capacity to inject a situation with those opposite extremes of emotion is a rare talent."

Click HERE for Tina's full review and buy links

The Boy From Brighton by Geoffrey Knight: "The entire story, from the chasing the curlers so they wouldn’t go down the storm drain to kissing the boy (whose name was Joe) to meeting his sad brother and his brother’s sad, pregnant girlfriend seemed to be about Charlie believing that his tickety-tock heart didn’t feel things like other people. So Knight makes the reader feel them instead. Exceptional read and I can’t recommend it more highly."

Click HERE for Tina's full review and buy links

And last, but not least,  I have a butt-ton as usual. :) So, here they are, my top picks for June:

Woke Up In a Strange Place by Eric Arvin: "Woke Up In a Strange Place is a story of death and rebirth, of destiny and second chances, like an ambling journey through a long and winding poem written in perfect symmetry and rhythm, a visual journey sketched on the mind’s eye of halcyon days and a tempest of moments that have served to build a man from beginning to end to beginning again.

I love this book, love it with everything there is to love about storytelling and wordsmithing and imagination and speculation about what lies beyond for us all."

Click HERE for my full review and buy links

Half Blind: Freelance Magic #1 by Christine Price: "Half Blind is a book of sorcery and technology pitted against the keen intellect and instincts of a man who makes a living at testing and pushing limits, and acquiring ill-gotten gains for the sake of profit. It’s filled with action and suspense and grave danger, seduction and magic and mystery, twists and turns and sacrifice, and an if I didn’t want to punch your face so hard, I might just like to kiss it romance that all lead to a breath-holding climax and a revelation that has me itching for book two, somewhere right about this very minute, thank you very much."

Click HERE for my full review and buy links

Infected: Undertow by Andrea Speed: "Roan, Holden, Dylan, Scott, Grey, and most of the other usual suspects are back in Infected: Undertow, and you know Roan and Holden are throwing around loads of the general wiseassery they’re so good at. But they’ve got a few cases to solve too, which isn’t unexpected considering how good they are at what they do, even when there are seemingly no clues to follow, and the stench of failure clings like a miasma that almost foils even Roan’s super-senses.

I’d say Andrea Speed dialed Infected: Undertow up to eleven, but that’s so passé these days. So, I’ll give it a twelve. Well, it’s one louder, isn’t it? It is."

Click HERE for my full review and buy links

One Breath, One Bullet by S.A. McAuley: "Sometimes the enemy of your enemy is your friend. Sometimes it pays to keep your friends close and your enemies closer. Sometimes your friends and your enemies come wrapped in the same skin. Sometimes you come to trust the man who has been your enemy for more than a decade, and it is the same as loving him…though you don’t know it yet. And you’ve got a mission to accomplish before you can examine the secrets and lies and half-truths that you’ve been told for most of your natural born life.

No one ever said being a Peacemaker would be easy.

S.A. McAuley dragged me through unholy political waters, took me wading through the murky depths of deception, and left me hanging by my fingertips on the ledge of the abyss that is the coming revolution. And not only that, but has also taken complete control of my ever-obsessive need for more."

Click HERE for my full review and buy links

Threshold: Whyborne & Griffin #2 by Jordan L. Hawk: "How do you sum up a book like Threshold in a single word? Clearly, I’m not very good at it, but if I were to try, I’d say it’s extraordinary. It truly is all the synonyms of that word: amazing and bizarre and unique and strange and marvelous. The plot is chockfull of squicky surprises and brimming with frightening and freakish bogies, not to mention danger and intrigue and romance. 

Joseph Campbell once said that the crossing of the threshold in a hero’s journey is 'the point of no return.' Why in the world would you want to miss that?"

Click HERE for my full review and buy links 

And that's a wrap for the month of June! Until next time, happy reading!