Welcome to a Fictional Reality

Welcome to a Fictional Reality

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Coloring for grown ups? Yes, please!

I've recently discovered a new trend in the book world and have become intrigued by it.  It's this idea of Adult Coloring books.  Don't let your head go in the gutter there, I'm not talking about "adult themes" to color.  There is nothing dirty about it.  It is simply coloring books with more intricate designs that are designed for adults with better motor skills than kids.

The idea is that by focusing on the designs and color patterns that it can help you release stress, flex your brain muscles, keep you sharp, and keep your fine motor skills exercised.  Oh, yeah... and they are fun!  I've even seen where some bookstores are having adult coloring parties where you can do a page for free!!

After hearing a lot of buzz about this trend, I decided to go to the bookstore and buy myself a coloring book.  And yes, I felt like a 5-year old asking the associate where the coloring books where. But much to my surprise, the associate walked right past the kids section and took me to art and magazines where there was a bright and colorful sign welcoming me to the Adult Coloring section (I may have heard the angels singing just a bit as I saw it).  There are so many different types and themes that you can choose from.  There's traditional mandalas, celtic designs, city scapes, and even some with words (bonus!!).  After much deliberation, I finally decided on the Creative Coloring Inspirations: Art Activity Pages to Relax and Enjoy! book.

And of course, no coloring book is complete without something to color with, right?  Thankfully the store I went to had already thought of that and had coloring pencils and markers strategically placed near the coloring books and I got myself the Pro Art 36-Piece Artist Pencil Set set.  Yes, I spent a little more on the pencils than I did the actual coloring book, but they'll last longer than the book, right?

Once I got home with my coloring book and pencils, it was a flashback to childhood as I could not wait to get started on a page.  Now I will admit that I gave near painstaking consideration to every color choice at first, but then I finally just let go and had fun with it.  I liked how well it turned out that I went to the Dollar Store and picked up a cheap frame to put it in!



So check out the wonderful new world of adult coloring, and let yourself relax and have a little fun!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Like All Things Beautiful - 5-Star Review

Like All Things Beautiful 
(Hearts of Haines Book 2)

By: Shannon McCrimmon
Released: May 2, 2015

Synopsis:
In this sequel to Kiss Me Hard Before You Go, Evie Barnes is living day-to-day, trying to keep her father's land and his cattle business afloat.  She is adjusting to his absence and to living with Finch and the rest of the carnies, which is creating quite a stir amongst the locals in Haines.  As Finch and the others learn a new way of life that doesn't involve the carnival, they're dealing with prejudice from almost everyone in town.  A string of suspicious incidents occur, prompting all fingers to point the blame at them.  Just when Evie and Finch learn to deal with the mountain of obstacles facing them, the unexpected happens, causing them to question if their relationship can survive it all.

Review:
Welcome back to Haines, South Carolina!  It's been a little over a year since I first met Evie, Finch, and the whole carnie crew and let me tell you... I have missed them!  To read my 5-Star review of Kiss Me Hard Before You Go (Hearts of Haines Book 1), click here.

If you thought that you loved Finch before, just wait until you see Farmer Finch who will do anything to make the love of his life happy.  He is an all-around good guy that exactly what every girl wants and needs.  

Where Evie was a strong woman in Kiss Me Hard Before You Go, she grows into an even stronger woman in Like All Things Beautiful and we really get to see the extent of her character.  She doesn't just make decisions for the heck of it or because they fit her whims.  She truly views Katie, Finch and the other carnies as her adopted family.  So she always tries to think of what is best for all of them.  

I am in love with the Hearts of Haines series for a couple of reasons.  First, while Evie and Katie are in their late teens, they don't act like stereotypical teenagers.  This means that while they face real life struggles, the story is not filled with annoying teen angst.  They face real problems that adults face and are looking for real love, not just a string of flings.  Second, it's a love story that you don't have to feel guilty about reading.  It's about life and love, not sex.  Third, the writing is fantastic!  You will be transported back in time to the 1970's with the perfect sprinkling of cultural references that will make you want to toss your skinny jeans and pull out your bellbottoms and platforms!

Stay tuned for my review of This is Where We Begin.  Book 3 in the Hearts of Haines series is Katie's story.  I'm reading it now, and I already feel so close to Katie.  

Buy Links:
Like All Things Beautiful:

This Is Where We Begin:

Kiss Me Hard Before You Go:


About the Author:
Shannon McCrimmon was born and raised in Central Florida.  She attended Rollins College and earned a Master's Degree in Counseling.  In 2008 she moved to the upstate of South Carolina.  It was the move that inspired her to write her first novel.  She currently lives in Greenville, South Carolina with her husband and toy poodle.  She'd love to hear from you!  Connect with her at shannonmccrimmon.com.

Connect with Shannon McCrimmon

Instagram: @writermccrimmon
Twitter: @smccrimmon1
Facebook: shannonmccrimmonauthor

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Unexpected by Lily Avalon - Cover Reveal

Unexpected
Release Date: 07/21/15
New Adult/Standalone

Summary from Goodreads:


Ever had one of those days? Alina Lyons is having one. Everything keeps falling apart and going wrong. Just when she thinks it couldn't get worse, it does. After a case of mistaken identity and a broken heart, she finds herself questioning the things she thought she knew. She wonders who she can turn to or trust anymore.


An unlikely bond with her former best friend's ex, Ryan Wilcox, sends her life in a new direction. He offers her a place to stay while she gets her life back on track. His friendship is exactly what she's been missing—what she's been needing. Alina's never felt this alive. As time goes by, the dynamic of their relationship becomes more than either of them expected. A few innocent kisses could lead them in a new direction, but are they prepared for what's on the other side?

Only one way to find out.

*Unexpected is a standalone new adult novel* 



About the Author
Lilly Avalon is the author of the RESIST series as well as other erotic romances. She's somewhere in the midst of her twenties and lives mostly in the stories in her head. When she's not enveloped in the worlds she creates, she's out in the real world making stories happen. That or reading other romances. It's a toss-up.
Author Links:
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Friday, May 1, 2015

November Sky - cover reveal

November Sky (Hardest Mistakes #2)
Release Date: 05/19/15
Limitless Publishing

Summary from Goodreads:
A HEARTBREAKING LOSS.




A LOVE THAT TRANSCENDS MORTALITY.

A STRUGGLE BETWEEN HOLDING ON AND LETTING GO…

KRISTIAN REED is only seventeen years old when his girlfriend, JESSICA SCOTT, dies in a tragic accident. Devastated and burdened with guilt, he finds it impossible to move on.

Six years later, he’s not doing any better. He’s accepted a prestigious internship at a big city new station, but he’s still losing himself in alcohol and women to numb his pain.

BAILEY NICHOLS is assertive and annoying, but something draws her and Kristian together. Her brother hates him, but Bailey is used to getting what she wants. She knows the pain of losing people you love, and she's determined to break through Kristian’s emotional wall and prove they belong together.

Jessica is caught between worlds. She can't let go of Kristian, but she's not meant to be here, and her lingering is threatening everyone and everything around her as she begins to lose herself to the darkness.


Book One:

(linked to Goodreads)

Buy Links:

About the Author
Dannielle Wicks currently lives in the town of Kingaroy, Queensland in Australia. She is a TV show nerd and lover of cars. She’s always had a love for writing, even in school. She used to hide her writing notebook inside her textbooks just so the teacher wouldn’t notice what she was up to. She loves reading, especially paranormal romance. When she’s not writing or working, she competes in Speedway Sedan Racing across the state.

All of the books in the HARDEST MISTAKES series are based on a different main character, so you don't really need to read them in order, although all the characters link back to each other in some way...
(P.S. if you ever reference any of my books or myself on a social media site, be sure to use the
#‎HardestMistakes hashtag or @DWicksAuthor)


Author Links:
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Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Half Breed Queen - Book Blitz


Half Breed Queen (Skatia Narratives, #1)
Release Date: March 2015
322 pages

Summary from Goodreads:
Devastating tragedy puts 14-year-old high school freshman Marla Owens, on a fast-paced journey of survival, revival and coming of age. Driven by a force she can't begin to understand and a burning need to find out the truth, she heads toward her mother's home in North Dakota. She soon learns more about herself and her family than she could have ever imagined — her mother was royal heir to the powerful Skatian throne! And now the Skatian people need her to protect their world from those who wish to conquer it.

In a classic tale of good versus evil, set on Earth and beyond, a young girl fights to survive to become a young woman—and the reluctant queen of Skatia. Who can she trust? Will she be able to control her own immense abilities and justified anger to do what's right? One thing's for sure: Marla's not in Texas anymore!


About the Author
LA Hendricks is an IT project manager by day and science fiction/fantasy novelist by night. A longtime lover of words, she reads science fiction, fantasy and paranormal romance novels regularly (when there is time). When not reading, writing or working, LA can most often be found watching football or basketball with her adorable cat, Mona.

Author Links:
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Friday, April 10, 2015

Scar of the Bamboo Leaf - Book Blitz


Scar of the Bamboo Leaf
by Sieni A.M. 
Release Date: 07/09/14

Summary from Goodreads:
"That boy is like the bamboo...foreign and unknown in this environment. But like the bamboo, if you plant and nurture it in the right soil, it has the potential to grow vibrant and strong."

Walking with a pronounced limp all her life has never stopped fifteen-year-old Kiva Mau from doing what she loves. While most girls her age are playing sports and perfecting their traditional Samoan dance, Kiva finds serenity in her sketchbook and volunteering at the run-down art center her extended family owns, nestled amongst the bamboo.

When seventeen-year-old Ryler Cade steps into the art center for the first time, Kiva is drawn to the angry and misguided student sent from abroad to reform his violent ways. Scarred and tattooed, a friendship is formed when the gentle Kiva shows him kindness and beauty through art, until circumstances occur beyond their control and they are pulled away.

Immersed in the world of traditional art and culture, this is the story of self-sacrifice and discovery, of acceptance and forbearance, of overcoming adversity and finding one’s purpose. Spanning years, it is a story about an intuitive girl and a misunderstood boy and love that becomes real when tested.


Available from:


About the Author
Sieni A.M. is a coffee addict, world traveler, and avid reader turned writer. She was born and raised in the South Pacific, graduated from the University of Canterbury, and is currently living in a port city near the Mediterranean with her husband and two daughters.

Author Links:
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Thursday, April 9, 2015

Dark Siren - Book Blitz


Dark Siren (Dark Siren #1)
Release Date: 07/03/13
Paranormal
452 pages

Summary from Goodreads:
To survive, their bond must be unbreakable.

When the mysterious and passionate Rhane rescues Kali from an attacker in the theater parking lot, they form an immediate, smoldering connection. But Kali doesn't remember Rhane or anything from their past. As far as Kali knows, she's just a seventeen-year-old kid coping with an insatiable hunger for the “spark” or energy of others, feeding on classmates to survive.

A unique artifact—one that may hold the key to returning Kali’s memories—is uncovered by the archaeology firm where she works part-time, sending Kali and Rhane on a dangerous journey that leads them to the Forbidden City, into the unforgiving Gobi, and into the ruins of Rhane’s ancient homeland. As they fight for survival, Kali begins to discover who she really is and the true power she possesses.

But Rhane still harbors a secret that could destroy Kali…unless old enemies kill her first.


Buy Links (CURRENTLY FREE):
Amazon / B&N


About the Author
Born and raised in a small sunny town in South Carolina, Eden finds thunderstorms to be inspiring. There are few things she loves more (except maybe cake) than curling up with a good book on a rainy day, often reading into the wee hours of morning when something really grabs her. DARK SIREN is her exciting debut novel. BANEWOLF, the thrilling continuation of Rhane and Kali's journey, was released winter of 2013. Look for book 3 in 2014!

Author Links
Facebook / Twitter / Goodreads Page / Blog

GIVEAWAY:
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Wednesday, April 8, 2015

The Blast - 4 Star Review




The Blast
Release Date: 12/15/14
200 pages

Summary from Goodreads:
After a series of blasts force Beatrice Hicks and her family into their prepper bunker, they emerge to discover they are among the survivors of a nuclear apocalypse. Fighting against rogue groups and coping with deaths are just some of the adjustments Beatrice must make to survive, but how will she maintain her humanity after the blast?

Review:
If you have followed my blog for any length of time, then you know that post-apocalyptic dystopians are by far my favorite books on the planet.  So, I have become a bit of a snob about them.  I'm happy to say that The Blast stood up to the challenge of keeping my interest.

Beatrice is exactly the type of character that I would expect to come out of experiencing a nuclear apocalypse at a young age.  She's a little salty on the outside, still a warm and caring person inside, but has emotional baggage none the less.  

There are a few little details that take it out of the realm of possibility/reality such as how little time they waited to venture outside after the blast went off. But that is just my over analytical mind talking there. The story still makes you want to know what is going to happen to the characters next, and that is what matters more.  

Praise for THE BLAST:
“This is the most impressive and heartfelt apocalypse story I’ve ever read in my life!”

“A real tour de force… [It’s] refreshing to have a YA book which focuses on the important things in a person’s life – family, love and death.”


“What a beautiful story. A wonderful look at the human ability to survive, rebuild, and grow through survival.”


“One of the best post-apocalypse stories I have read.”


“This book easily stacks up against my favourites and has an originality that many books seem to lack these days. [The] writing style is impeccable and this book is utterly breathtaking!”




Buy Links:

About the Author

Sarah Perlmutter is the Wattpad featured author of THE BLAST, a young adult post-apocalypse novel. 

Outside of the young adult genre, Sarah has published poems and flash fiction through Mash Stories, Millennial Garbage, the Pittsburgh History and Landmark Foundation, and the Western Pennsylvania Writing Project.

When she is not writing, Sarah enjoys spending time with her husband and cat, cooking food that is far too spicy, making arts and crafts, and teaching high school English.

For more information about Sarah and her writing, check out her website.

Author Links:

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Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Days Like This - Cover Reveal

Days Like This
Release Date: 06/02/15
Bookish Group Press
New Adult

Summary from Goodreads:
Sometimes the only thing standing between fear and hope is yourself.

Almost a year ago, nineteen-year-old Cassie Harlen had a lot to deal with. A stack of college acceptance letters waiting for answers, a proposal from the boy next door, and a mother whose most recent bipolar episode left Cassie hurt and confused. Tired of cleaning up the messes caused by her mother's disorder, of resenting her mother for not being there, and scared of being trapped by an inevitable future—which included marrying Graham Tucker—Cassie did the only thing she could think of to keep from ending up like her mother: she left.

Graham never knew why Cassie walked away. He woke up one morning and she was gone—along with the life that he’d created around her. After eleven months, Graham has a new plan for his future. One that doesn't involve Cassie Harlen.

When Cassie's mom nearly burns down her house, Cassie’s forced to return home. Back to a mother she’s tried to ignore and the guy she’s been unable to forget. Graham doesn't know how he's going to spend the whole summer living next door to the person who broke his heart without letting those old feelings push through to the surface.

Neither does Cassie.


Pre-Order Links:
AmazonBarnes & NobleKobo BooksiBooksOne More Page (Signed Copies)

About the Author
Danielle Ellison spent most of her childhood reading instead of learning math. It's probably the reason she can't divide without a calculator and has spent her life seeking the next adventure. It's also probably the reason she's had so many different zip codes and jobs. 

When she’s not writing, Danielle is probably  eating cookies, fighting her nomadic urges, watching too much TV, or dreaming of the day when she can be British. She has settled in Northern Virginia, for now, but you can always find her on twitter @DanielleEWrites.

Author Links:
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