Brunswick Blog Tour

Monday, 30 July 2012.


Brunswick by Ann Haines

When Jonathan wakes up beside a lake bruised and bleeding, he has no idea how he got there or where “there” really is. He must try to remember how he ended up in this place and why.

When he meets Grace and a group of people that seem to want to help him, he is thrown in to a world that he doesn’t know. Haunted by visions and voices in his head, Jonathan soon realises that this world isn’t as safe as he’d hoped.

Taken from his life and asked to save a land he knows nothing about, from a menacing hooded figure, Jonathan must learn quickly to survive. As he struggles to stay alive long enough to get home he is faced with a deadly choice, Join It or Die. And when it becomes clear that so many would do anything to kill him he must stay close to those who would kill for him.

To stay alive and get home he must face the one thing he never wanted to, the figure in black. And when the hood comes down Jonathan is faced with a revelation that could break him and destroy everything he has fought for.

Author Ann Haines has stopped by today with a guest post for you lovelies and an excerpt from her new book, Brunswick. Enjoy!

It’s great to be asked to post on Paranormal Book Fan as I really enjoy this blog, so thanks for having me. For anyone reading this post, I hope it wets your appetite!!!

I so enjoyed writing the characters in Brunswick, over the two and a half years of developing and writing them all, I really fell in love with them. But before those individual characters were born I had to lay the land, set the scene and create the people from which the characters formed. There are different clans and species in Brunswick and that is what made the characters for me. So here’s a little layout as to where those characters sprang from.

The Talamh:- (From the Irish/Gaelic word used for ‘Land’)
The Talamh people are land dwellers. Brunswick is ruled by the Steward from their chief village of Torin. There are two other villages of the Talamh people, Hadley is the rural farm land and Crofton is the village where clothes, shoes etc are manufactured. The Talamh are excellent fighters choosing swords and knives as their preferred weapons. They run fast on land and have a lot of strength, they are excellent trackers.

Crann:- (From the Irish/Gaelic word used for ‘Tree’)
The Crann people are tree dwellers. Their chief village, that is second in command to Torin, is called Haven. There are two other villages where the Crann live. Tomer is where most of the medicines are made and the Dr’s are taught. Alon is very arty and is where a lot of the teachers, musicians and artist’s live. The Crann have chameleon like skills and can blend very well in to most environments, they are strongest among the trees. Their preferred weapon is a bow and arrow as they are excellent marksmen. Their senses are very heightened and they move with excellent stealth.

Draiocht:- (From the Irish/Gaelic word used for ‘magic or witchcraft’)
These are people born of a recessive magical gene. They can be Crann or Talamh and from any village within those clans. Each Draiocht that is born will possess a power of some sort that aids the people of Brunswick. There could be healers, elementals or see-ers, to name a few. A Draiocht will always be at the Stewards or Captains side as an advisor, when that Draiocht dies or becomes unable to fulfil their duties, the most powerful Draiocht alive at that time is chosen to take their place.

Nathair:- (From the Irish/Gaelic word used for ‘Snake’)
The Nathair are evolved snake people. Although from afar they look very human and have a lot of human attributes they are also beholden to their snake roots. They will normally only attack if they are threatened, they are extremely quick and agile. They are very strong and can have a vice like grip once they get hold of you. They have a snake’s tongue which they can use to stun opponents in battle. They are a very private community where they live among the deep forest. Their community is large and half underground.

An oldie but goldie that everyone knows. My lycanthropes are a little older in origin, they do not change their form or cause another to become a lycanthrope by infecting them. They are simply animals that can be in any form, from wolves to rabbits and bears to birds. They are able to speak and think like humans but always remain very animal in their instincts. They are much larger versions than their pure animal ancestors.

Volker:- (From the German word used for ‘Group or Rabble’)
These are the destroyer’s army. They are made purely for battle, they have no emotion or empathy and follow orders blindly. Dressed in black armour they wreak havoc through the land of Brunswick. Their origins are cause for much concern among the clans of Brunswick. I won’t spoil that for you though!!!

Once I had these in place I was able to develop a few from each and really make them come to life. I loved writing each and every one of them and I really hope that you enjoy reading them.

Happy Reading

Ann xx

Coldness kept sweeping over him, his left arm was freezing. As he opened his eyes brightness sunk in that stung, his head was pounding and he was suddenly aware of how much his body hurt. As he started to come around a little more he could see trees and felt grass underneath him. He sat up slowly and realised the coldness on his left side was water. He was at the edge of a huge lake surrounded by trees, it was beautiful. As he looked around he could see nothing more than trees and water, he looked down at himself and saw that his legs and arms were cut and grazed. His head hurt and as he held his hands up to his face he felt pain over his right eye and the fatness in his lower lip, he could taste the blood. He rolled to his knees and splashed some water on his face, he winced as it stung. Struggling to his feet he looked over the place, he could see thick trees all around but up ahead they seemed to thin a little. He headed in that direction limping slowly, his right knee was very swollen and the pain was getting worse. As he carried himself through the trees he started to feel afraid, he had no idea where he was or how he got here. He remembered the feeling of falling and the brightest light, what he couldn’t figure out is how that would have brought him here. Then a wave of fear fell over him, what if he was dead? What if this is where you end up? He started to feel dizzy but pushed himself to carry on, he could hear noises. A cracking behind him made him spin around.

“Hello” he called “who’s there”.

There was no answer but he knew he wasn’t alone. As he searched with his eyes to find what or who had made the noise he started to move forward again. He saw movement in the corner of his eyes but everywhere he looked he saw nothing. He was feeling more and more scared now. The pain in his body, the fear of not knowing where he was and that he wasn’t alone was just too much. Overcome with dizziness he fell to his knees, he started to feel nauseous and as he collapsed on to his side he could see black shapes emerging from the trees. A tear ran down his cheek as he thought of his home and his family. With that he passed out.

About the author:

Ann Haines is a debut writer from the South East of England. She is a married mother of two, a horror movie buff, Tweeter, Blogger and a self-confessed geek............................ and GLEEK (much to her sons annoyance).She has been writing from an early age and even took to illustrations as she went through her teenage years. Although she still sketches as a hobby she now prefers to focus on her writing. At nineteen she became a mother and had to put her writing on hold for a more lucrative job to support her and her son, as it was just the two of them. She never gave up the idea of becoming a writer though and when her son was four he gave her the idea for what is now her first book 'Brunswick'.

After two and half years of writing her book and researching the self-publishing industry, Ann's book 'Brunswick' was published on Amazon. She became part of the Indie Publishing community that she loves and is widely involved in. Over the years she has had many ideas for her work and so we can expect to see much more of this new Indie Author.

Author's Links:

Buy the book: Smashwords/Amazon


Stacking the Shelves #14

Saturday, 28 July 2012.

Stacking The Shelves is all about the books we are adding to our shelves each week, (and filling our kindle) sharing with you our excitement for our newest titles and maybe have you discover a new book in the process! Hosted by Tynga over at Tynga's Reviews

Loving my haul again this week yay!! Click on the book title for more information.

Physical books

Until I Die (Revenants, #2) Life Eternal (Dead Beautiful, #2) Deadly Hemlock

Until I Die (Revenants #2) by Amy Plum (ATOM)
Life Eternal (Dead Beautiful #2) by Yvonne Woon (Bought)
Deadly Hemlock by Kathleen Peacock (Bought)


The Demon Catchers of Milan Beautiful Disaster (Beautiful, #1) Dehumanized 

The Demon Catchers of Milan by Kat Beyer (Netgalley)
Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire (Netgalley)
Dehumanized by Michael Loring (Author)

What goodies did you get this week? Leave me your links so I can check them out.

Knee Deep by Jolene Perry

Friday, 27 July 2012.
Published: 1st May 2012
By: Tribute Books
Source: Nicole at Tribute Books

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

While not the type of book I usually read, Knee Deep really piqued my interest. I had signed up for a spotlight post with an excerpt and after reading it, I just wanted more. And I wasn't disappointed. It brought about some strong emotions and really left an imprint in my thoughts. I've never read a book about abuse situations before, usually keeping away from realism in the books I read, but I just felt compelled to read this one.

I really enjoyed Jolene's writing style. It was simplistic and made for a fast paced read. Ronnie, the protag, is a likeable girl and her characters actions and emotions were realistic to the situation. She has two best friends, Luke and Mindy. As things go downhill with Shawn, she starts to have feelings for Luke which doesn't help her situation, especially as he seems to feel the same, and they are playing Romeo and Juliet opposite each other in the school play. This only adds fuel to Shawn's fire.

So, we have somewhat of a love triangle, with only one obvious choice to be rooting for. Luke does his best to help Ronnie once he finds out, but she doesn't want him to tell anyone, so he doesn't. He does jump in just at the right moment a few times though, always seeming to know how to act to douse the situation. He is Shawn's friend too.

Once she tells Mindy, it was again realistic as to how a best friend might act. Her dad's part also was very well done. I just couldn't believe that any mother would be as unobservant and "away with the birds" as Ronnie's. She noticed absolutely nothing going on with her daughter at all.

If this is the type of book you like to read, then snap it up, you will not be disappointed. Once I started reading this, I could not put it down. I would have no hesitation in picking up other books written by this author. 

Buy the book: Amazon/Smashwords

The Goddess Legacy by Aimee Carter

Thursday, 26 July 2012.

The Goddess Legacy (Goddess Test, #2.5)The Goddess Legacy by Aimee Carter
Published: 31st July 2012
By: Harlequin Teen
ISBN: 0373210752
Source: Netgalley

My rating: 3.5 stars.

The Goddess Legacy is a book of 5 novella's giving us some history on the gods and their love lives before we meet them in The Goddess Test. I loved the first two books in this series and was really looking forward to reading this.

The first one, The Goddess Queen is from the POV of Hera/Calliope and tells us the story of her marriage to Zeus/Walter. She doesn't get treated very well by anyone, especially Zeus and this gives us some understanding as to the person she is presently. But I could not muster up much empathy for her. She was power hungry from the moment they defeated the titans, and most of what she seemed to do, was to be the most powerful, although seeing as they couldn't have beaten the titans without her, she really already was. But Zeus did not want a woman to be more powerful than him, and nobody would stand up for her. We also see how far back her love for Hades/Henry actually goes.

The second novella, The Lovestruck Goddess is from the POV of Aphrodite, the goddess of love. She is just a sweetie and hard not to like, even when not particularly liking her actions. Her problem is that she has so much love that she cannot just share it with one person, and needs a husband who will allow her to spread her "love" through constant affairs.

The third novella, Goddess of the Underworld, is from the POV of Persephone, from the point of her arranged marriage to Hades/Henry until she gives up her immortality to spend eternity in the underworld with Adonis. This really opened my eyes to the reasons why Henry acts the way he does with Kate. He is badly treated by Persephone for centuries and I just couldn't bring myself to empathise with her even though she was forced into an arranged marriage at 16. My heart just broke for Henry throughout this one.

Part four, God of Thieves, is from the POV of Hermes/James and is a sweet little story about the girl he fell in love with. This was really nice, but also, sad. We learn in this one why the gods decided to take on more modern, human names.

And lastly, the one I was most looking forward to, The God of Darkness is from the POV of Henry and leads us to The Goddess Test. Hades has decided that he wants to fade, that he no longer wants to live his lonely, painful existence. He offers his brothers and sisters a century in which to train someone in to fill his shoes and they in turn, want to use that century to try to find someone for him to share his life with. And so begins the search. And after the mysterious deaths of 11 girls, Kate is next. And from the first moment Henry sees Kate, he is mesmerised by her. This is so sweet and made me just want to pick up The Goddess Test again and start reading it straight away.

I can't wait for book 3, The Goddess Inheritance. I just love this world and the characters that Aimee has created.

Buy the book: Amazon/The Book Depository

Waiting on Wednesday #23

Wednesday, 25 July 2012.

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

The Archived (The Archived, #1)
The Archived by Victoria Schwab
Release Date: 22nd January 2013
By: Hyperion

Imagine a place where the dead rest on shelves like books.
Each body has a story to tell, a life seen in pictures that only Librarians can read. The dead are called Histories, and the vast realm in which they rest is the Archive.

Da first brought Mackenzie Bishop here four years ago, when she was twelve years old, frightened but determined to prove herself. Now Da is dead, and Mac has grown into what he once was, a ruthless Keeper, tasked with stopping often-violent Histories from waking up and getting out. Because of her job, she lies to the people she loves, and she knows fear for what it is: a useful tool for staying alive.

Being a Keeper isn't just dangerous—it's a constant reminder of those Mac has lost. Da's death was hard enough, but now her little brother is gone too. Mac starts to wonder about the boundary between living and dying, sleeping and waking. In the Archive, the dead must never be disturbed. And yet, someone is deliberately altering Histories, erasing essential chapters. Unless Mac can piece together what remains, the Archive itself might crumble and fall.

In this haunting, richly imagined novel, Victoria Schwab reveals the thin lines between past and present, love and pain, trust and deceit, unbearable loss and hard-won redemption

I love the sound of this one. I only discovered it last wee, think I actually seen it on a WoW post, so thank you if it was yours :)

Leave me your links so I can check out your posts. 

Teaser Tuesday

Tuesday, 24 July 2012.

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. You know the rules: grab your current read, open to a random page and share a two sentence teaser with us (no spoilers!). Be sure to tell us about the book, so we can add it to our TBR list!

This week my teaser comes from Drain You by M. Beth Bloom.

Next thing I knew I was lying on the carpet again, dialling a number on the phone by my head. The folded piece of phonebook paper had somehow unfolded, come out of my pocket, and attached itself to my left hand. 

I love to read teasers, so make sure to leave your links so I can check them out :)

Stacking the Shelves #13

Saturday, 21 July 2012.

Stacking The Shelves is all about the books we are adding to our shelves each week, (and filling our kindle) sharing with you our excitement for our newest titles and maybe have you discover a new book in the process! Hosted by Tynga over at Tynga's Reviews

Another week has flown by. I'm happy with my haul this week and looking forward to seeing yours :) Click on the book title for more information.

Physical Books

The Golden Lily (Bloodlines, #2) Storm (Elemental, #1) The Host (The Host, #1)

The Golden Lily (Bloodlines #2) by Richelle Mead (Bought)
Storm (Elementals #1) by Brigid Kemmerer (Bought)
The Host by Stephanie Meyer (Charity shop find €1)


Mystic City (Mystic City, #1) Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass, #1) Blood Debt Dominion (Guardian Angels, #1)

Mystic City by Theo Lawrence (Netgalley)
Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas (Netgalley)
Blood Debt by Nancy Straight (R2R)
Dominion (Guardian Angels #1) by Melody Manful (Blog Tour)

Leave me your links so I can check out your book hauls this week :)


See by Jamie Magee

Friday, 20 July 2012.
See by Jamie Magee
Published: 5th May 2012
Source: Book Reader Addicts
Target Audience: YA

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I have to admit that when I started reading this I didn't know what it was about and the plot didn't really come to light until I was over halfway through, so this added to the mystery of the book. Charlie gets drugged by her "friends", Bianca and Britain, and when she wakes up, important memories are missing.

After her graduation, her mom moves her home to Salem to live with her sister, where she starts to put her memory back together, with the help of her real friends Madison, Aden and especially Draven. She remembers how to deal with the shadows, how important Draven was in her life, and what exactly Bianca and Britain are.

This book was well written and the dialogue was quite enjoyable. The characters were well defined and likeable, I just didn't feel any real connection to them. It has an interesting story line, but no action until the end. Most of the book is about Charlie learning who she was before she lost the memories that made her who she was.

I was more interested in this book for the first two thirds or so but found my interest waning towards the end. I think I thought the big reveal would be something more exciting but I wasn't that impressed. I'm finding myself a little hesitant to pick up the next in the series.

Buy the book: Amazon/Barnes & Noble

Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake

Thursday, 19 July 2012.

Anna Dressed in Blood (Anna, #1)Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake
UK Release Date: 
By: Orchard Books
ISBN: 140832072X
Source: Hachette Children's Publishing
Target Audience: YA

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Just your average boy-meets-girl, girl-kills-people story...

I really enjoyed Anna Dressed in Blood. I loved Kendare's way of providing all the back story information through snippets as we continued to move forward, rather than bombarding us with an information overload. She doesn't jump straight into the main story, but shows us the protag, Cas, in action on a preceding ghost hunt.

This story is told from the POV of Cas, a 17 year old ghost hunter. Anna dressed in blood is the ghost of a 16 year old girl who was murdered about 60 years ago. She haunts her family home, viciously murdering anyone who dares to enter, be that new tenants, realtors or homeless people just looking for shelter for the night. Until one night, as part of a prank, Cas ends up inside the house, and she doesn't kill him. He feels drawn to her and goes back to the house alone, where he meets the girl behind the monster.

Cas is a nice guy with an unusual life and job. Normally working alone and never making friends. This time is different. He makes some good friends which gives us some really good secondary characters to make this story all the more absorbing. Reading from the male POV is a rare treat and Cas certainly doesn't disappoint. He's a real "guy", and it was fun to watch him be the last to realise his feelings for Anna.

Cas, Thomas, the school nerd and Carmel, the most popular girl in school, make up an unlikely threesome of friends but they make an awesome group of ghostbusters, with the help of Cas's mother and Thomas' grandfather, who are both witches.

This was a fun read and did get a bit gruesome at times but I would definitely recommend it and look forward to reading the next in the series, The Girl of Nightmares.

Buy the book: Amazon/The Book Depository

Waiting on Wednesday #22

Wednesday, 18 July 2012.

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

Furious by Jill Wolfson
Release Date: 16th April 2013 
Publishers: Henry Holt and Co. BYR
Target Audience: YA

Three high school girls become the avenging Furies of Greek legend.

We were only three angry girls, to begin with. Alix, the hot-tempered surfer chick; Stephanie, the tree-hugging activist; and me, Meg, the quiet foster kid, the one who never quite fit in. We hardly knew each other, but each of us nurtured a burning anger: at the jerks in our class, at our disappointing parents, at the whole flawed, unjust world.

We were only three angry girls, simmering uselessly in our ocean-side California town, until one day a mysterious, beautiful classmate named Ambrosia taught us what else we could be: Powerful. Deadly. Furious.

Add it to your TBR on Goodreads

What do you think of this one? I want to see what 3 powerful, angry girls can do. You know, "a woman scorned" and all lol. What are you waiting on this Wednesday, leave me a link and I'll stop by.

Teaser Tuesday

Tuesday, 17 July 2012.

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. You know the rules: grab your current read, open to a random page and share a two sentence teaser with us (no spoilers!). Be sure to tell us about the book, so we can add it to our TBR list!

The Goddess Legacy (Goddess Test, #2.5)
This week my teaser comes from The Goddess Legacy by Aimee Carter. This is a five part novella and as I'm not very far in, my teaser comes from Part 1, The Goddess Queen which is written from the POV of Hera/Calliope. 

"What's done is done." I closed my eyes. I had to regain control. "You had your chance, and now it's over. Zeus loves me. He's loyal to me, and he treats me like the queen I am. He's there fore me every single day."
"And is he who you want?" said Hades quietly. "Do you love him?"
"I wouldn't be marrying him if I didn't."

I love reading teasers so make sure to leave your links :)

Spotlight and Cover Reveal of Pledged (Soul Wars Saga #1) by Gwynneth White

Monday, 16 July 2012.

Pledged (Soul Wars Saga, #1)

Published: 13th June 2012
By: Smashwords/Swallow Press
Target Audience: YA

Everyone has a soul mate. But what do you do when your soul mate would rather give his soul to the demons than be with you?

Seventeen-year-old Erin has a problem. Seth has been hers forever, but now an ancient curse is tearing him away. And the demons who invoked it will stop at nothing – even murder – to claim him as their own.

How can she win against a curse so binding that it has damned countless others to this same fate – an eternity alone?

The answer lies in the past. To find it, Erin and Seth must risk all, travelling back in time to a dangerous world where love is forbidden, and life – and death – hang on a pledge.

Follow Erin and Seth as they travel to ancient Shenaya and confront the curse that has plagued their families for millennia. Caught in a war between the Angelic Guardians and the Gefallen, the disembodied dead, they must fight to keep their souls in tact and their love untainted.

Add it to your TBR on Goodreads

Buy the Book: Amazon/Smashwords

BIOGRAPHY Of  Gwynneth White 

I have spent my entire life living in a parallel universe of make-believe characters, only coming back to reality for long enough to check that no one burnt the house down in my absence. A few years ago I decided to commit some of those ‘friends’ and their stories to paper. The Soul Wars Saga is the result of those efforts. Before that I co-authored two non-fiction travel books – The Complete Guide to 4x4 Trails and The Ultimate 4x4 Guide. Both books became instant best-sellers in South Africa. And before that even, I studied a degree in African History and Politics at the University of Stellenbosch in South Africa. When I’m not writing, I am a wife to Andrew, and a mom to Stephanie, Erin, and Kate, our teenage daughters. My family and I live in Cape Town with two dogs, a cat, a horse, and some neglected fish. Now that you know a little about me, I would love to get to know you. Please befriend me at: 

Keep your eye out for more on this tour in August and September. 


Stacking the Shelves #12

Sunday, 15 July 2012.

Stacking The Shelves is all about the books we are adding to our shelves each week, (and filling our kindle) sharing with you our excitement for our newest titles and maybe have you discover a new book in the process! Hosted by Tynga over at Tynga's Reviews

Hello again everyone. Hope you all had a lovely week. I can't wait to see all your awesome goodies. Here's what I got this week. Click on the book title for more information.

Physical Books
Pushing the Limits Cursed Alice in Zombieland (White Rabbit Chronicles, #1) Fated (Soul Seekers, #1)

Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry (from Mira Ink)
Cursed by Jennifer L. Armentrout (from Spencer Hill Press)
Alice in Zombieland by Gena Showalter (from Mira Ink)
Fated by Alyson Noel (Bought)

Madly (Madly, #1) Madly & Wolfhardt (Madly, #1-2) Madly & the Jackal (Madly, #3)

Madly by M. Leighton
Madly and Wolfhardt by M. Leighton
Madly and the Jackal by M. Leighton (AToMR blog tours)

The Mystic Wolves (Mystic Wolves, #1) Until Next Time (The Angel Chronicles, #1)

The Mystic Wolves by Belinda Boring
Until Next Time by Amy Lignor
(both free on Amazon)

So, that's me. Leave me your links so I can check out your stack :)

Guest Post with Laxmi Hariharan author of The Destiny of Shaitan by Laxmi Hariharan

Friday, 13 July 2012.

The Destiny of Shaitan
Published: 17th March 2012
Ebook $0.99
206 pages
Target Audience: YA

Kindle bestseller The Destiny of Shaitan is a delicious blend of gods & humans, sacred and profane, a gripping ride offering a glimpse into your own power.

Partially set in a futuristic Bombay, this coming of age story is painted against the backdrop of a post-apocalyptic world.

When Tiina accompanies Yudi on a mission to save the universe from the ruthless Shaitan, she seeks more than the end of the tyrant; she seeks herself. Driven by greed and fear for his own survival, Shaitan bulldozes his way through the galaxy, destroying everything in his path. Tiina wants Yudi to destroy Shaitan, thus fulfilling the prophecy of Shaitan being killed by his son. But she finds that Yudi is hesitant to do so. The final showdown between Tiina, Yudi, and Shaitan has unexpected consequences, for Shaitan will do anything in his power to win the fight. The stakes are high and the combatants determined. Will Shaitan's ultimate destiny be fulfilled?

Young Adult Forever 
Laxmi Hariharan 

My sister-in-law turned to me, “when Naman married you I thought you might lick him into shape. Little did I realise he was marrying someone just like himself.” She was of course referring to the—happy to spend life in pursuing my dreams traveller who never wanted to settle down in one place—me.

Coming from a conservative South-Indian family in suburban Bombay, my biggest fear as a teen was to be ‘trapped’ in an arranged marriage. I always knew that I would wait till I found the one. A partner who would accept me for what I am. A free spirit—an easy rider kind of person. So, when my then to-be-husband woke up one morning and didn’t blink at my “Uh! How about we just spend the day walking around Singapore, doing nothing... just being?” I knew that was him.

It took a few more years to realise that I was firmly in what the world calls today the Young Adult space. I not only write YA, I am YA. In fact I have my own quiz to help you figure out if you too are YA.

a. Do you have more in common with your girlfriends’ fourteen year old (especially your love for Hunger Games, Twilight, et al)

b. In workplace meetings or in ‘grown up’ parties or at the pub, are you the only one who knows Formspring (or for that matter twitter?)

c. Are you health conscious (in fact probably vegeterian?) who also loves to over-dose on vitamins in the hope of staying perpetually young?

If you got even two of the above three right, chances are that like me you are YA forever.

But, wait a bigger surprise was in store, for little did I realise how much my writing owes to Indian mythology. Me, the one who left my home country India in wanderlust, running away from the constraints that Eighties Indian society placed on its women. Me the uber Go West kinda gal, now churning out fiction inspired by the East—Indian gods & goddesses and their adventures? I paused, and dug into my memories—going back in time to when I was a little girl, perhaps five in Bombay—and my grandma, Periamma I called her (literally translating from Tamil as Big Mother) wrapped in her ultra-traditional, nine-yards, silk-cotton saree narrating stories from ancient Indian epics. I had absorbed them wide eyed, becoming one with them in my dreams, believing I could overcome demons in the real world, and that nothing could stop me. It was these stories which portrayed Goddesses embracing their power, stronger than the mightiest Gods, who were my earliest role models. In embracing my roots I found my voice.

Through my writing, I hope to share these delightful stories from the rich tradition of Indian mythology, presenting them in a cool, futuristic, simple to understand setting, so that people of all ages everywhere, can enjoy them. The Destiny of Shaitan and my next novel The Seven Islands will particularly resonate with Young Adults and the YA at heart; for we dare to dream. We are the imagination engine, who sees the future.

If my readers feel just a little of those wonderful emotions which my Grandma shared with me, then I will be ecstatic.

About the author: Laxmi Hariharan was born in India. She lived in Singapore and Hong Kong and is now based in London. She has written for various publications including The Times of India, The Independent and Asian Age. She is inspired by Indian mythology. When not writing, this chai-swigging, technophile enjoys long walks in the woods and growing eye catching flowers. Her debut novel The Destiny of Shaitan is available on Amazon.

Reach Laxmi here

Giveaway information:
-any one who comments is entered into a draw to win a $15 amazon card
-also, best comment will get profiled on Laxmi's Reader Avatar series on her blog

Blog Tour: Review, Guest Post with Julie Reece and Giveaway

Thursday, 12 July 2012.

CruxCrux by Julie Reece
Published: 9th July 2012
By: J. Taylor Publishing
ISBN13: 9781937744076
Source: Publisher
Target Audience: YA

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book for review as part of a blog tour. I didn't really know what to expect from it, I think I thought it was more a thriller kind of thing. I didn't read the blurb again before I started to read it and I was just blown away. The book kicks off almost immediately and doesn't slow down until the very end. It is so much more than the blurb would lead you to believe.

Birdie's parents died when she was young and she has went from foster home to foster home until, at the age of 18, she ended up living on the streets, which she has done for the last four months. When she sees a man, claiming to be giving away money, she follows. Little did she know, that these events would change her life forever. She gets chased by thugs, meets the hot Grey Mathews and through Jeff (the money giver), learns of her heritage. Now she must decide whether to risk her life accepting what has been handed down to her.

Birdie is a fantastic character who I just couldn't help but love. I really enjoyed seeing things from her POV as she dealt with what her heritage had thrown at her, discovered that Mr. Rich was interested and wanted to protect her and learned to fight and protect herself in a battle which could result in her and/or Grey's demise.

The secondary characters in this book were also great, written really well with definition and personality. Grey is really swoon worthy and one for the book boyfriend list, while Jeff is regal and mysterious. They all work together and make this a fun, romantic, mysterious and suspenseful read. This did read like a thriller at times with paranormal elements of time travel and a fantasy world.

Julie is an amazing author who took me easily onto the battlefield with the vividness of her descriptions of battle, death, and gruesomeness including, aromas of death. Her world building here was just fantastic and I could see it all clearly. It's a long time since I read a book with such good battle scenes. Normally I zone out a bit at this kind of thing and just skim over it, but Julie kept me totally riveted.

I really feel that I'm not doing this book justice with this review. I've been thinking about it for the last few days and I'm just stumped. It's so hard to write a review when I loved a book so much. I can't think of anything negative that I could say about it at all, I just loved it!

This is a stand alone book unfortunately, so we won't get to see more of the awesome Grey and Birdie, that's a negative I guess. So I found one!

I can do no more, only urge you all to pick this one up, you won't be disappointed.

Add Crux to your TBR on Goodreads

Guest Post with Julie Reece

Hi everybody! Thanks so much for having me here today :)

I wanted to discuss the fact that I’m a closet comic book reader. Okay, that’s not true. I’ve been out of the closet a while on this one. I love them, pure and simple, and have since sixth grade.
Most superheroes are beautiful—and built. We have comic book artists to thank for that, as well as blame. Storm from X-Men did more to ruin my self-esteem than Barbie ever could, but never mind that now. Often the villains are just as awesome, if not more so.  Their stunning looks, however, are only part of the appeal. What about all the glorious power of these super human people? *Eyes glaze over and start to spin* Me likeeee.  I’m not drooling am I?

If you could choose any super power or paranormal identity, what would you choose? Mind reading, super strength, or maybe you’d like to be a vampire (sparkly or non-sparkly variety) or a werewolf or dragon. Would you want to fly, have unlimited healing abilities or perhaps you’d like to time travel, be a shape shifter or talk to animals. Mucho awesomeness!

My family and I got into this discussion last weekend. Everyone chose with the understanding you could only have one talent. I said I would pick controlling the elements. Then I got blasted that my choice was four powers and not one. (I still contest this idea) It’s one with benefits, get over yourself. My eldest daughter took time travel, her friend mind control, my husband flight and my youngest super speed. Once we had that settled, we talked about whether or not we could control our power. Would we want to use it for good or lose it in the end to the dark side? We decided it was important to explore the question, just in case, because this could so totally happen, right?

If my ninth grade science teacher gave me an F on my test, would I be able to stop myself from sending a sharp wind to knock his toupee from his head to the floor? What about the mean girl at school who spread nasty rumors about you and then stole your boyfriend? You just gonna let that one go? Uh, huh. If the police pull you over for speeding, or your cranky neighbor chases your dog, or you lost the championship game, could you control the urge to seek revenge?

I’d like to think we’re above that, that we would be good citizens and do the right thing, no matter what. But in the end, honesty prevailed, and the group at our little table had to admit we weren’t sure. We collectively shuddered and laughed some nervous laughter and decided to leave the supernatural crime fighting to the pen and page.
Still, to be able to control lightening … sigh. You could really kick some bad guy booty with that! The idea of all that power, good and evil, the freedom to choose what sort of person you want to be are the elements that inspired me to write my first novel, Crux.

Okay, so what about you? What power would you choose, and would you be a good guy or bad?

About the Author
Born in Ohio, I lived next to my grandfather’s horse farm until the fourth grade. Summers were about riding, fishing and make-believe, while winter brought sledding and ice-skating on frozen ponds. Most of life was magical, but not all.

I struggled with multiple learning disabilities, did not excel in school. I spent much of my time looking out windows and daydreaming. In the fourth grade (with the help of one very nice teacher) I fought dyslexia for my right to read, like a prince fights a dragon in order to free the princess locked in a tower, and I won.

Afterwards, I read like a fiend. I invented stories where I could be the princess... or a gifted heroine from another world who kicked bad guy butt to win the heart of a charismatic hero. Who wouldn't want to be a part of that? Later, I moved to Florida where I continued to fantasize about superpowers and monsters, fabricating stories (my mother called it lying) and sharing them with my friends.

Then I thought I’d write one down…

Hooked, I’ve been writing ever since. I write historical, contemporary, urban fantasy, adventure, and young adult romances. I love strong heroines, sweeping tales of mystery and epic adventure… which must include a really hot guy. My writing is proof you can work hard to overcome any obstacle. Don’t give up. I say, if you write, write on!

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