Blog Tour: To Reap the Spirit (The Dead Dreamer Series Book 3) by Sarah Lampkin (Review/Giveaway)

To Reap the Spirit
(The Dead Dreamer Series #3)
By: Sarah Lampkin

To Reap the Spirit

Publication: October 13th, 2020
Genre: New Adult/Urban Fantasy

SYNOPSIS

Sanguis daretur. Ignis invocavit.

The third installment in the haunting Dead Dreamer series.

Somehow Brenna Whit has survived to her junior year at Nephesburg College. Despite all odds, she’s fought against the Gatekeepers and lived. But the battle for the Fade has only just begun.

New pieces have been added to the board.

The Fade opens to the Veil.

And a Shade from the past returns.

With Brenna’s secret out, everyone is after her: dead and living alike. Those from across the sea have come and they’re determined to regain control of their broken faction.

Questions will be answers

Fires will be lit

Chaos will reign

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REVIEW

Picking up from the situation of Book 2, To Reap the Spirit explores further into the Fade as more moving parts of the dangers surrounding Brenna’s Dead Dreamer side of things take on a new meaning. Much like Book 2, the Gatekeepers have called in another Dead Dreamer, Bridget to remedy and control the situation of her unsealing the doors to stop their conflicting goals. However, Bridget is a much more dangerous character that takes things further as she can cause some dire consequences with her power.

Book 3 brings in the equation of the different stances that the Guardians and Gatekeepers have as well as things that they also can’t seem to control while also giving Brenna her own further struggles with balancing life in the Fade and how far she can go before even she has her limits while also having the side of life with the living that she can’t seem to get involved with. At the same time, it explores another dimension other than the Fade called The Veil. At the same time, pulling in more characters to have bigger parts to play that were either present in previous books or at least mentioned. There’s a bigger element of action and danger throughout which does make it more engaging but at times, what made the previous 2 books stand out was the smaller scope from at least the character standpoint but to be fair, it was inevitable that it had to get bigger since we had already hints of bigger parties at play than what was happening in the college campus.

Overall, as a 3rd book of a series, its engaging because of how it manages to expand further into the story and world building on the elements from the previous books. At the same time, adding more characters expands further from just its main character Brenna while giving more room for other people to be involved like her interaction with her best friends, Aeria and Damon as well as having more roommates and new “enemies” that adds quite a bit to the story overall.

Score: 4.5 out of 5

Purchase Links
The Parliament House
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DEAD DREAMER BOOKS

To Dream is to Die (Book #1)

Eighteen-year-old Brenna Whit is entering college as a freshman and starting to meet new people, but she hides a dark secret. Because of an accident that happened three years ago, her spirit wanders the Fade whenever she falls asleep. It’s something she wants to keep hidden from the world, but when she sees someone watching her in spirit form, she fears the secret’s out. With new friends, possibly new enemies, school, and a new crush, Brenna has too much to worry about for just her freshman year of college.

Perfect for those who enjoy Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Supernatural

Goodreads

To Wake the Dead (Book #2)

Brenna Whit teeters the line between the living and the dead. Now that she’s back for her sophomore year at Nephesburg College, she’s determined to focus on the waking world. But when her own soul is trying to kill her and a new Dead Dreamer is fighting for power, Brenna is dragged back into the world of the dead.

The Gatekeepers are doing everything they can to restore the power they once held over the town of Nephesburg. With a mysterious set of twins arriving in town to help them prepare, Brenna must decide what’s important: continuing to hide her secret or reveal herself and fight for what she believes is right. The decision could end up leading to a permanent death for Brenna so she must choose wisely.

Classes have begun…

The battlefield is set…

Let the fight for the Fade begin.

Goodreads

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

A native of Richmond, Virginia, Sarah Lampkin is a 2015 graduate from Lynchburg College [University of Lynchburg] with a master’s degree in English. Since graduation, Sarah now lives in Northern Virginia working in the IT field as a Technical Writer while continuing her research for her graduate school thesis. When she isn’t working, Sarah continues her Celtic mythology research and Gaelic studies, while working on the Dead Dreamer series.

Dead Dreamer
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GIVEAWAY

Digital collection of the Dead Dreamer series (Everyone)
ENTER GIVEAWAY HERE

BLOG TOUR SCHEDULE

October 12th

Reads & Reels (Guest Post) http://readsandreels.com
It’s a Novel Life (Review) https://lifesanovelty.blogspot.com/
The Faerie Review (Guest Post) http://www.thefaeriereview.com
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October 13th

@the.b00kreader (Review) https://www.instagram.com/the.b00kreader
I Smell Sheep (Guest Post) http://www.ismellsheep.com/
Dark Whimsical Art (Spotlight) https://www.darkwhimsicalart.com/blogs/news
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October 14th

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October 15th

Dash Fan Book Reviews (Spotlight) https://dashfan81.blogspot.com/
Tranquil Dreams (Review) https://klling.wordpress.com/
Horror Tree (Guest Post) https://www.horrortree.com
Breakeven Books (Spotlight) https://breakevenbooks.com
Misty’s Book Space (Spotlight) http://mistysbookspace.wordpress.com

October 16th

The Magic of Wor(l)ds (Guest Post) http://themagicofworlds.wordpress.com Book Dragon Girl (Interview) https://bookdragongirl.com
Entertainingly Nerdy (Review) https://www.entertaininglynerdy.com Lunarian Press (Spotlight) https://www.lunarianpress.com/
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Blog Tour: The Collection of the Negatives (Blood Rising Book #1) by Violet St. Karl [Review/Giveaway]

THE COLLECTION OF THE NEGATIVES
(BLOOD RISING BOOK #1)

BY: VIOLET ST. KARL

Publication Date: January 11, 2019

Genre: Sci-fi/New Adult

SYNOPSIS

In a world with skyrocketing inflation and unemployment, blood has become the new commodity, and the rarer your blood type, the more it’s worth.

After losing her job and watching her savings dwindle, Liri is persuaded by a resourceful friend to sell her blood to ABO Blood Group, where she learns she is O Negative, the most valuable and sought after blood.

Unable to afford living in New York City, Liri reluctantly decides to move back home and live with her parents, but her plan is interrupted when a virus is maliciously unleashed onto the island of Manhattan, resulting in a citywide quarantine. Before being able to devise an alternative plan, she is secretly informed of a covert mission by ABO to evacuate Negatives out of NYC. Although reluctant to trust them, it’s her only viable choice to stay alive, but unbeknown to Liri, she and the Negatives are vital to activating opposing agendas on Earth and beyond.

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REVIEW

The Collection of the Negatives is the first book in the Blood Rising series by Violet St. Karl. As a first book in a series, one of the main concepts to build up the foundation of the characters and the scenario at hand. On that level, it does a great job. The world here is reminiscent of futuristic worlds where the world has been technologically advanced and yet when the apocalypse arrives, only selected people are chosen to escape to hopefully find a way to survive and keep the humankind going on and in this premise, it is specially selected for those with negative blood types. It is a creative angle for the foundation of the story and where the key sci-fi elements are and where the story is the most strong. The new adult elements particularly the romance bits here were a bit over despite the fact that they used that angle to give the story its turning point and unravel some of the mystery as well. However, it felt like it could have been executed better.

One of the strengths of the novel is the characters. While there are some flaws further down in the novel specifically with the main character, the basis of the characters have a good balance and distinct characteristics that help give them their own edge and place in the story as a whole. Plus, there is a good basis of building up different relationships especially friendships and alliances. As I mentioned before, the romantic part is the bit that I think wasn’t done quite as well but it also has to do with the fact that its part of the “new adult” genre style which I’m not a big fan of but that is a more personal preference. Its just by the last act, there is something about it that binds together a lot of weird shift in events but then it is a good way to set up for the next book.

Overall, The Collection of the Negatives is a decent way to start up a series. It sets up its characters well enough. There are some flaws and some little execution issues but it delivers on the suspense and the sci-fi elements are very strong and also has a lot of good ideas even if its a little weird.

Goodreads: 3 out of 5

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Violet St. Karl

Violet St. Karl’s love affair with science fiction and fantasy began at the tender age of four when she first saw Star Wars: Return of the Jedi, but nearly three decades passed before she started transferring the stories in her head onto the computer screen. Unbeknownst to Violet at the time of signing her lease, her Upper West Side apartment was the former site of Edgar Allen Poe’s old farmhouse, where he completed writing the Raven. However, she didn’t begin writing until receiving another sign from the universe a year later. While spending extensive time in Barcelona, she learned her flat once belonged to Mercè Rodoreda i Gurguí, a famous Catalan writer, an indication that living in the former residences of famous dead authors was no coincidence, but a sign to start writing.

After over a decade in New York, Violet recently returned to her roots in the Detroit area where is an advocate and proud Ambassador of the Authors Guild. When not writing or focused on strengthening the local literary community, she is planning which country to explore next.

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GIVEAWAY

For your chance to win a paperback copy if this book, AND a home blood typing kit (Maybe you’re a Negative?), click the link below!

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April 22nd

Reads & Reels (Review) https://readsandreels.com/
B is for Book Review (Interview) https://bforbookreview.wordpress.com
Jessica Rachow (Review) http://jessicarachow.wordpress.com
I Smell Sheep (Excerpt) http://www.ismellsheep.com/

April 23rd

The Caffeinated Reader (Review) https://www.thecaffeinatedreader.com
Tranquil Dreams (Review) https://klling.wordpress.com/
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April 24th

Breakeven Books (Excerpt) https://breakevenbooks.com
A Full Time Nerd (Review) http://afulltimenerd.com
Daily Waffle (Excerpt) http://www.dailywaffle.co.uk

April 25th

Pages and Paw Prints (Review) http://pagesandpawprints.com/
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April 26th

Port Jerricho (Review) http://www.aislynndmerricksson.com
Eclectic Review (Review) https://eclecticreview.com/
J Bronder Book Reviews (Review) https://jbronderbookreviews.com/

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Book Review: Something Great (Something Great #1) by M. Clarke

Something Great (Something Great #1)
By: M. Clarke

Something Great

Fresh out of college, life was predictable and comfortable for Jeanella. She had the strength of her friends, the security of her job, and she was dating a reliable man; it was all smooth sailing. That was until one night, when she met someone who made her feel things she’d never felt before—dangerous, heart pounding, breathless heat.

Never imagining she would see him again, Jeanella has no idea what to do when fate steps in and thrusts Maxwell Knight into her life, just as things were beginning to change around her. When she lands her dream job and travels to New York for Fashion Week, can she focus on her career instead of on Maxwell?

Will she ignore all the danger signs and jump straight into his arms; or would she miss out on the chance of finding something great? – Goodreads

As I work through the books (mostly free deals) on my Kindle to work on some saving habits and spending less habits, the next on the list was this one. To be honest, I haven’t been in much of a contemporary romance mood but then they usually are such easy reads that I couldn’t pass it up with the low energy levels I’ve been doing. Ironically, Something Great was not something great. I mean, look at the tagline up there, “She didn’t know what she was missing..until he found her.” Oh and believe me, the main guy here, Max is a pretentious rich guy. There is a difference in being self-confident and being pretentious and while the girl here, Jeanella seems to view him as self-confident, I couldn’t quite buy into it. With that said, half of Something Great already dropped to Something Good as we got to know this Max fellow more.

However, luckily, while I wasn’t a big fan of Jeanella’s choice in Max and how she changed her views so quickly and such, her character did start off rather on the right track. Her character’s heart is in the right place as she holds onto some of her values. But then, she also has some parts of her that are my absolute pet peeves when it comes to these novels. The main thing being that the moment any girl sees a hot guy, she just burns up and forgets everything and just wants to have sex with them. I’m not sure there is any enjoyment in it. I get the nervousness of seeing someone you are attracted in and Jeanella does have those moments but it is quickly masked by her desire to go to bed with him regardless of in the beginning when he is just a sexy stranger or when they get into a relationship and she get mad at him. Wanting to sleep with someone doesn’t measure love, at least not to me. So you can already see where Something Great falls apart for me.

All in all, I think I’m just not the audience for these books anymore. I sometimes find some that work well within my standards and I don’t know, create a man that I find is desirable within what I would think has those characteristics and makes me feel like its romance. Many times, it just feels like there’s a whole lot of lust in the way any scenario is described and that doesn’t link to what love is. If only authors didn’t confuse these two emotions so much, it would make for great contemporary romance. I guess, I’ll just keep hoping for the next one to hit the target better. Something Great was just something okay.

A Stone in the Sea (Bleeding Stars #1) by A.L. Jackson

I had a goal to go digging with something nice and romantic for the Valentine’s Marathon and I realized that I had stopped downloading romance books in a while. The only one that I found which I believe I had found fairly recently was this one called A Stone in the Sea which is the first book of the Bleeding Stars series. Never heard anything about this but then with movies, books and games, it is best to go in blind.

Let’s check it out!

A Stone in the Sea
(Bleeding Stars #1)
by: A.L. Jackson

a stone in the sea

Sunder lead singer and guitarist Sebastian Stone has everything—fans, fame, and fortune. He also has a heart full of bitterness and a reputation for a short-fused temper. But an outward reputation rarely reveals the true man inside. Facing assault charges after trying to protect his younger brother, Sebastian is sent to Savannah, Georgia to lie low until the dust settles in L.A. Shea Bentley is beautiful, kind, and hiding from the very lifestyle Sebastian has always embraced. When the mysterious, tattooed stranger begins hanging out at the bar where she works, Shea is quick to recognize he is nothing but trouble, but she’s helpless to the way her body lights up every time his intense gray eyes tangle with hers. They both soon find themselves drowning in a sea of desire and passion that won’t let them up for air. –Goodreads

Its been a tough ride of this genre of books of late. However, A Stone in the Sea is definitely a step in the right direction. The characters have some depth and back story. There are some very nice moments where other characters come into play to enforce a scene’s effectiveness. It banks a little on the sex scenes but that goes with the genre and those are quite well executed. What I did like the most was that one of the main characters, Shea was written quite self-aware of the normal tropes of the lady in this genre of books however, the frustrating parts is sometimes she will fall into those tropes and written as being irresistibly connected or in love with this mysterious Sebastian fellow. What does save the book a lot is the book structure which works in both Sebastian and Shea’s point of view. For the readers, we get the full picture and this helps us to accept situations as they occur and see how the characters react to know them a little better. At the same time, the supporting characters were quite unique and it would have been nice to have seen them get some bigger arcs as well.

Sadly, A Stone in the Sea was quite decent about halfway until things start getting on the repetitive side in the second half. Plus, a great deal of these books is buying into the characters and their scenarios and being able to imagine it. And in some of these, I’m not sure even my fantasies would wander in that direction and be okay with some of the heartbreaking moments. It hints at such a bad scenario that I wasn’t too fond of when the conflict broke the characters apart and the dialogue of the reconciliation. There were also these weird repeated words that popped up of their emotions or something that maybe reflected their feelings but it didn’t seem to do much for myself.

Overall, A Stone in the Sea is an average book. It works for the most part particularly in the first half. The second half becomes less intriguing to read due to distaste for certain characters and their decisions and the repetitive scenarios and dialogues that seem to dawn on the characters. The finale was also fairly easy to figure out before it ends in somewhat of a cliffhanger after a big reveal which as most of you know, I’m not a big fan of books that aren’t self-contained.

Blog Tour: Before the Tempest (UK Crush Series #4) by Tani Hanes (with Giveaway)

Blog Tour

Before The Tempest
(UK Crush Series Book #4)

by: Tani Hanes

Before the Tempest

Publication Date: March 21, 2017
Genre: New Adult Romance/Contemporary Romance

Synopsis

Aileen Foster, poor, orphaned, musically gifted, never imagined her life could change so much, so fast, but getting a job as interpreter for boyband UK Crush pitched her headfirst into tumult and a glamorous life she never thought she’d have. Now, engaged to band member Theo Shelley, and having survived her audition to Hamilton Conservatory in Manhattan, she’s off to the Bahamas with the boys while they write their new album. Life has never been easy for her, but she’s trying.

Add to Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34664760-before-the-tempest?ac=1&from_search=true

About the Author
Tani Hanes

Tani Hanes was born in Yokosuka, Japan. She spent the first few years of her life traveling back and forth between Japan and the US, making the permanent move to the Central Valley of California when she was five. She visited family in Japan on a regular basis, and attended college in Tokyo for one year at ICU before getting her degree in Language Studies from UC Santa Cruz. She has two children, and was a substitute teacher for fifteen years. Hanes currently resides in New York City with her husband and cats, Moss and Lily.

Previous books in the UK Crush Series

Author Links
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tanihanesauthor/
Website: http://tanihanes.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TaniHanes
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Tani-Hanes/e/B01M4PYCA6/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1493136660&sr=8-1
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16028512.Tani_Hanes
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/tanihanes/
Swoonreads: https://www.swoonreads.com/a/tani-hanes/6QA49L/

Buy Links
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Before+the+Tempest+by+tani+hanes
Pre-order Link for “Surviving the Hurricane” Book #5: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B072HKLYYV?ref_=pe_2427780_160035660

Giveaway:

5 digital sets of the UK Crush series and 1 complete print set of the UK Crush series, signed by author

Link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/0e7c6a8f4/?