BEA Bound

Hello Everyone! I’m sorry I’ve been so MIA lately! Thank you for your patience with me and not unfollowing me! Seriously y’all, thanks for sticking with me!

As promised I will be attending the BEA conference. A little late but still excited to be able to attend and enjoy. I hope to have some great giveaways coming soon! Will I see any of you there? Is there any author attending you would like to see giveaways from? Let me know!

20130529-194808.jpgNYC Bound! YAY!

Blog Tour Excerpt & Giveaway: Wide Awake by Shelly Crane

Title: Wide Awake
Author: Shelly Crane
Release Date: March 23, 2013
Genre: Contemporary
Age Group: Young Adult
Blurb: A girl.
A coma.
A life she can’t remember.

When Emma Walker wakes up in the hospital with no knowledge of how she got there, she learns that she’s been in a coma for six months. Strangers show up and claim to be her parents, but she can’t remember them. She can’t remember anyone. Not her friends, not even her boyfriend. Even though she can’t remember, everyone wants her to just pick up where she left off, but what she learns about the ‘old her’ makes her start to wish she’d never woken up. Her boyfriend breaks up with the new girl he’s dating to be with her, her parents want her to start planning for college, her friends want their leader back, and her physical therapist with the hazel eyes keeps his distance to save his position at the hospital.

Will she ever feel like she recognizes the girl in the mirror?

Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | Smashwords

Excerpt: ​He smiled that Mason smile that set me on fire all over. Then he put one hand on the other side on the hospital bed and the other lifted toward my face. I waited, bated breath, gulping, sweaty palms, fluttering eyes, the works. His face got so close before he stopped. I thought he had decided against whatever he was doing he waited so long. I began to pull back in disappointment, but he reached behind my neck gently and pulled me to him. The barest of touches was the best way to describe our first kiss. It wasn’t really a kiss at all. His bottom lip barely brushed my top one. When he leaned back and opened his eyes, he must’ve seen the confusion and frustration in my face.

He chuckled. “I just had to taste that coconut…” he licked his lips, “but I don’t want to kiss you when you’ve been angry at me and I messed up our date.” He said ‘date’. Like…a date. “I want to kiss you when if we go another second without it, one of us will combust.”

My breaths were raging. I tried to calm myself. “I…” I failed.

​”I want to give you back your first kiss, the one that jerk stole from you. And I want it to be something that even a coma can’t make you forget.”

Giveaway: One lucky person will be walking away with an ebook copy of Wide Awake by Shelly Crane. To enter this Rafflecopter giveaway CLICK HERE.

About the Author:
20130513-062818.jpgYA author from a small town in Georgia and loves everything about the south. She is wife to a fantastical husband and stay at home mom to two boisterous and mischievous boys who keep her on her toes. They currently reside in everywhere USA as they happily travel all over with her husband’s job. She loves to spend time with her family, binge on candy corn, go out to eat at new restaurants, buy paperbacks at little bookstores, site see in the new areas they travel to, listen to music everywhere and also LOVES to read.

Her own books happen by accident and she revels in the writing and imagination process. She doesn’t go anywhere without her notepad for fear of an idea creeping up and not being able to write it down immediately, even in the middle of the night, where her best ideas are born.

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Where has this week gone?

Hey guys! Sorry I’ve been MIA this week! I had so much planned and with the exception of some reading, I haven’t gotten anything done. I started a new job and its been a tad bit more overwhelming than I expected. So as I said, I’ve been reading and these are the book reviews you can expect to see this week:

    Rise (Eve #3) by Anna Carey
    Scarlet (Lunar Chronicles #2) by Marissa Meyer
    Dare You To (Pushing The Limits #2) by Katie McGarry
    Haven (Apocalypsis #4) by Elle Casey

As for Giveaways since I haven’t decided on what to giveaway this month, it will have to wait. However, Elle Casey is have a huge indie giveaway Elle Casey’s Springtime Indie Book Giveaway. 190 titles and 1,554 copies to give away. Be sure to check it out by clicking here.

And last but not least Happy Mother’s Day.

Book Review: Ascended by Debra Ann Miller

AscendedTitle: Ascended (Fallen Guardian Saga #2)

Author: Debra Ann Miller

Rating: 3 of 5 Stars

Blurb: When Vie and Carter set out to complete their mission, neither could have ever imagined being separated from each other.

Vie is feeling completely alone in The Gates, just barely going through the motions. Gabriel, her closest friend, tries to distract her with the news of a possible traitor in their own backyard. While Vie longs to be back on Earth with her love, she knows the danger that this traitor could bring, and sets her mind to drawing them out to protect the people she loves.

Carter is left alone on Earth clinging to the empty vessel that used to contain his love, unable to let go and move on. Carter starts putting the events of the past few weeks together and realizes something more is going on.

All the while Lucian is working up a plan to keep Vivian’s soul and get everything he’s always wanted, including revenge against Vie and anyone she’s ever loved.

With both Vie and Carter working to find out what is going on in their respective worlds and defeat Lucian, will they ever be able to find their way back to each other?

My Review: Ascended picks up where Descended left off. Carter and Vie have been separated and miss each other desperately. The story is once again told in third person POV allowing for the reader to better understand the characters. With that being said their pain was real and just confirms to the reader how they truly are soul mates. Then after a chapter or two, the story really starts. I mean plot twist after plot twist, one reveal after another, and the same wide array of amazing characters keep us intrigued and amazed.

Ascended really isn’t that long yet it’s a fast paced novel and so much happens. But here is the part where I tell you what I didn’t like. Sadly, I had trouble connecting to the story. It truly was amazing and in a way, way better than Descended. Yet not being able to emotionally connect to the story, kept me from being able to love it.

So all in all, an amazing story. It is well written, has lots of action, has the recurring themes of friendship, family and love that I loved so much in Descended and an unpredictable story line that always keeps you guessing. Again, it was amazing but not being able to connect with it kept me from falling in love with the story or its characters.

*I received a free copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review.

Congrats Winners!

As you guys know, we ended the month with quite a few giveaways. This post is solely to congratulate these lucky suckers. 🙂

Of our David Estes Author Spotlight

1) One ebook copy of The Moon Dwellers– Congrats Julie S.!

2) One ebook copy of Fire Country– Congratulations Jessica!

Of The Damaged Blog Tour

1) One ebook copy of Damaged by H.M. Ward- Once again, congrats to Julie S.!

Of the Book of the Month Giveaway

1) One hardcover copy of The Eternity Cure by Julie Kagawa- Tamara congrats!

All winners have been notified. Thank you to all who entered and I should have another great giveaway coming up soon. 🙂

Cover Reveal & Excerpt: Just One Cup by Cassandra Giovanni

Just One Cup

Author: Cassandra Giovanni

Publisher: Self Published

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Age Group: New Adult

Release Date: June 20, 2013

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Blurb: Emma Walker was a writer who’d lost herself to someone else’s anger–who had given up on ever feeling like herself again.
Evan Levesque was a rock-god–the one all the woman wanted, but he’d never gotten used to the loneliness between the stage and real life.
With just one cup of coffee they’ll begin a journey of self-discovery at each others sides, but can Emma handle Evan’s fame while dealing with her own demons? Emma’s checkered personal past, a bad relationship that haunts the edges of her memories, threatens to make everything implode on them when Evan takes matters into his own hands.
Sticks and stones may break my bones, but your words…they’ll destroy my soul–Can Emma handle being put back together and facing who she’s become because of it?

Excerpt:

When he came off the plane he was wearing aviators, a black button-up, dark wash jeans and those Converse shoes that I hated on anyone but him. He lifted his sunglasses and broke into a smile as I ran into his arms. He dropped his bag and spun me around as soon as I was in his arms.
“How did you know?” he asked as he set me on the ground, his hands tangled in my hair.
“You told me what flight you were on.”
He shook his head and held my chin in his hand. “I’ve always wanted to have someone to wait for me—to spin them around and then do this.”
He pulled my chin up and tilted it until our lips touched—soft at first and then the reminder that we hadn’t kissed in two months came over us. The only thing that could pull us apart was the whistle that echoed through the terminal and then the incessant flash of cameras.
“Crap,” Evan hissed, his forehead pressed to mine with his hands on either side of my face so they couldn’t get a good picture of me. “You don’t want them to know who you are yet, do you?”
I shook my head but said with my voice shaking, “I knew the risk.”
He swallowed and then smiled. “Tilt your head down so that your hair covers your face from view.”
I did what he said and then felt his hands slip the glasses over my eyes. As I looked up his cocky half-smile made me laugh.
“They look a hell of a lot hotter on you,” he teased, throwing his duffel bag over his shoulder and wrapping his arm around my waist so that his fingers were in the front pocket of my jeans.
“I don’t think that’s possible,” I replied, breathless from the feel of his touch as my t-shirt rose, exposing the flesh of my hip to his warmth.
“It’s very possible with you,” he whispered into my ear as we made our way past the flashing cameras. “I can’t wait to see the tabloids on this one.”
“It would be much better if we did something dangerous, like locked ourselves in a public restroom.”
He looked down at me through his eyebrows. “Really? That’s not all that clean.”
“I haven’t seen you in two months,” I said, turning and stopping in front of him. “I’ve thought about you every single day. Do you know what that does to a girl? Especially when pictures of you half-naked are strewn across the internet.”
“I see you found those.” His voice was edged with amusement, but his face was red in embarrassment.
I pulled on the collar of his shirt before leaning up on my toes and whispering into his ear, “I need some real ones.”
“What do you need pictures of when I’m here?” he answered, his breath hot on my chin, voice seductive.
“I need you to burn the images into my mind then,” I said before gently biting his ear.
His free hand drifted down the small of my back to my rear pocket. “I thought I already had.”
“Mhmm…I need more.”
“I have to admit I kind of enjoy this.” He smirked down at me. “But teasing me like this is just cruel.”
“Does the rental car have blacked out windows?” I asked over my shoulder as I turned.
I watched his Evan’s Adam’s apple rise and fall. “I sure hope so.”

About the Author

cassandra giovanniCassandra doesn’t remember a time when she wasn’t writing. In fact, the first time she was published was when she was seven years old and won a contest to be published in an American Girl Doll novel. Since then Cassandra has written more novels than she can count and put just as many in the circular bin. Her personal goal with her writing is to show the reader the character’s stories through their dialogue and actions instead of just telling the reader what is happening. In 2012 she became a published Young Adult author, releasing In Between Seasons (The Fall, #1) and Walking in the Shadows. In 2013 she branched out by using her artistic illustrating talents to publish her first Children’s novel, The Adventures of Skippy Von Flippy: Tales of Friendship (Skippy Tales, #1). Cassandra will also release her first New Adult novel, Just One Cup, in the Spring of 2013.

Cassandra is a freelance professional photographer known for her automotive, nature and architectural shots. She is the owner of Gio Design Studios, a photography and publication marketing company that designs covers and marketing materials for authors utilizing the company’s photography. She is currently studying to receive her associates degree in Marketing. Cassandra is happily married to the man of her dreams and they live in the rolling hills of New England with the other loves of her life their dogs, Bubski and Kanga.

Book Review: Girl Meets Underworld by Jess Watkins

Girl Meets Underworld Title: Girl Meets Underworld

Author: Jess Watkins

Rating: 1 of 5 Stars

Blurb: Having lost her mother and brother, Stella stands on the roof of her building, about to jump. She is stopped by a handsome young man, who jumps first. Somehow, he survives and Stella soon discovers that Conner holds a dark secret and more than a passing connection to her own unhappiness.

But Conner isn’t the only man to take an interest in Stella. Will is dangerous. He has mood swings, a crazy older brother and the ability to heal abnormally quickly. Stella knows what Conner is, but what exactly is Will – and why does he appear to know more about Conner than she does?

My Review: I have the feeling that I’m going to struggle a bit with this review. After all, I have a lot to say. I hope you guys will bare with me and give me the opportunity to extensively review Girl Meets Underworld. There will be spoilers and very strong opinions.

Girl Meets Underworld is a book that the blurb does not at all prepare you for. But allow me to paint an accurate picture- if you can picture a world where Twilight meets the Vampire Diaries you would be golden. Bella- oops, I mean Stella is a girl ignorant to the supernatural world. She stands on her buildings roof in the hopes of committing suicide after severe bouts of depression due to having lost her family. Some dude magically appears and talks her down, Conner. Yes, he is a vampire. But let me not leave out any spoilers– there’s also Will, the unstable werewolf that completes this love triangle.

There is a very long list of things I do not like about this book. Even from the beginning. I did, however, keep to it. I didn’t read any reviews but this book has an overall 4 Star rating. That’s pretty good in my book. So I kept at it, hoping it would get better. And it kinda paid off because at times it did in fact get better. Well that enjoyment never lasted long and I ended the book with a red forehead from all of these face-palms and an undeniable frustration over cliches and stupid characters.

Hmm… Which to take on first? Cliches or stupid characters? It’s a tough one to decide on…. I don’t want to run out of steam or anger on one topic… Hmm.. Well, I guess we’ll start off with cliches. Try and leave the best for last…

The world of cliches was revealed very slowly to me. From one overused concept to another. For a fan of the supernatural, I’ve read plenty of books dealing with vampires and was sorely disappointed with the lack of originality. Well, here is my list of overall vampire cliches:

1. Vampires have to be invited in
2. Sleep during the day
3. Can be killed with a wooden stake to the heart
4. Turn to ashes when they die

Now, all you fans of the supernatural, tell me if any of these sound familiar. And please, don’t be shy to calling them out as you spot em.

1. Vampires finding the smell of werewolves repulsive.
2. In order to become a vampire, you need to die with their blood in your system.
3. Humans fearing vampires. Oh, wait a minute. That actually sounds legit. I mean, why shouldn’t prey fear their predators? Oh, but wait, that sounds good until its followed up by this: “You’re right, it’s not normal for someone like me to do these things, but I don’t like being what I am. You make me feel human. Being with you makes me feel more like myself. I enjoy spending time with you. That’s all.”

Ok, enough on cliches. As previously mentioned, Stella is in a love triangle between a vampire and a werewolf. This alone screamed Twilight to me but as I kept reading the lack of originality in this triangle seemed to stop here and then simply becomes a confused tangle of words and plot progression. Let me explain. Conner, was very Edward like- all gallant and attractive and thoughtful. Definitely worth the swooning- after a point. Enter Will the werewolf and I assume readers all united to scratch their heads. I was left confused and wondering how in the world this even happened. I quite literally flipped pages back and forth to make sure I didn’t miss something or accidentally skip pages.

Will, is introduced as a clueless and insensitive teen. You know what they say about first impressions? Well, this saying was lost on Stella who gave him a chance to make up for his screw up. This chance turns into a date that ends badly. Not to bore you all to death I’ll get to it. Stella takes the majority of the book to figure out what he was but in this time Will is abusive and injures her. Is a bit of a stalker and doesn’t know when to back off. Goes into full molester mode and doesn’t understand the meaning of no. Boy was I fuming when Stella kept giving him chance after chance and creating one excuse after another for him. With that being said, I think you can appreciate my confusion when out of nowhere she claims to *wait for it* love him. I mean this a dude that repeatedly molested her, physically hurt her and doesn’t stay away even when she asks him to. Mind you, this a first person narrative. One you would think would allow insight into such a declaration. Nope. None was offered and I’m still confused about it.

*Cue Twilight Theme Music* Now before what we assume is going to be an epic battle between the two races, Stella has to make her choice, Will or Conner. She, much like one whose name rhymes with Stella, struggles with the decision, until of course, she realizes there was never any question. It easily went to the one she loved the most, the one who she knew deep down in her gut was the one for her. Yes, the vampire.

Stella frustrated me to no end. Overall, I had trouble connecting with her. I didn’t understand her reasoning and whenever she started to win me over- with her action and words, there would then be something that shot that all to hell. If were to be extremely honest and calling things by their names, I would tell you that the reason I found her so frustrating was because I found her to be stupid and her reactions and emotions unrealistic.

I could continue this review by expressing my unhappiness with the various inconsistencies I found throughout the novel. This rant would include how her father changed from caring and loving to aggressive, cruel and abusive in the blink of an eye. Or I can go on about how vampires supposedly heal instantly unless of course you are Conner. What the hell? I really have no clue what the distinction is that made this situation different but it took Conner days to heal and I didn’t get it. But then again I’m not going to go into those things. I’m going to end my review with these final words.

Frustrated as crap, I read the book. Now, as I was writing this review I read all of my notes and can’t help but laugh. Laughing, I suddenly realize that I should be mourning the hours of my life wasted on this book. While I feel that suggesting this book not be read is pretty cruel, I would warn that you proceed at you own risk.

*I received a free copy of this novel from the author in exchange for an honest review

Guest Post by David Estes: Do you believe in soul mates?

Do you believe in soul mates?

David Estes

I do! And I’m a guy! Is that weird? Are you saying “Awww, that’s so cute!” or are you saying “This dude’s a cheeseball for sure!”? Well, regardless of whether you think I’m a hopeless romantic with my head in the clouds and no clue about reality, let me explain why I believe the way I do. Yep, this is my true love story!

Before I met Adele I wasn’t so sure about the whole “soul mate thing.” I didn’t necessarily have an opinion either way, because I didn’t have enough experience to decide on it. Well, all that changed when I met my future wife. Adele and I, although not exactly alike in every single way, connected in a way that made it impossible for us to stay away from each other. We love each other’s conversation, jokes, laughs, touches, and everything else. We moved in together after 6 weeks, were engaged in 3 months, and were married in 9 months. Yeah, we moved fast!

She’s my sunrise and moonbeams and crashing waves and lightning bolts. She makes life better and happier and more worth it. I’m sure I’m hitting plenty of clichés, but they’re all true, and here comes another one: she makes me a better man. Without her, I’m loster than the plane crash victims on the hit TV show Lost. In short, she’s my soul mate.

In fact, it was Adele who encouraged me three years ago to start seriously writing, which had always been a dream of mine. I wouldn’t be a fulltime writer today if it wasn’t for her!

So, regardless of whether you have a soul mate yet, or believe in that sort of thing, my belief in the concept absolutely has an impact on my writing. I like the characters who I believe are meant to be together, to find each other, to have the chance for their relationship to grow, and to stay together. When I believe two characters are soul mates, no other characters can get in the way no matter how attractive or smooth they are. I rarely do love triangles for that reason.

So does that mean all my books are cheesy romance novels with sunshine and picnics and stolen kisses? Not at all! My characters have endless and brutal struggles in their quests to be together, many of which will tear them apart before they’re eventually brought back together. Happy endings aren’t always a sure thing in my dystopian novels, leaving the reader in suspense and hoping for the best. Challenges make my characters stronger and more appreciative of the time they do have together. That’s real life, whether you have a soul mate, a best friend, a sibling, mother, or father. Our trials define us and mold us together like super glue.

Now I’d love to hear from all of you! Do you believe in soul mates? Do you have a soul mate already? Why or why not? All opinions are welcome as I believe everyone has a different take and there isn’t any right or wrong answer! Leave your opinions as comments below!

I’d like to thank Tiffany for the chance to come on her awesome blog and talk about soul mates!

David Estes

Blog Tour Excerpt and Giveaways: Damaged by H.M. Ward

Damaged

Author: H.M. Ward

Publisher: Laree Bailey Press

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Age Group: New Adult

Release Date: April 6, 2013

Buy on Amazon |Buy at Barnes and Noble

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Blurb: A new adult romance novel by New York Times & USA Today Bestselling Author H.M. Ward

Life sucks. And, as soon as Sidney picks up the pieces something always knocks her back onto her butt. It’s never pretty, but this time is different. This time pretty isn’t even the right word.

Peter is the personification of perfection. It’s like he fell off his angel perch in purgatory, because let’s face it–any guy that hot has got to be naughty. He was probably sent here to ruin her life.

Peter is beyond beautiful with his sexy blue eyes, dark hair, and toned body. Add in his charming wit and Peter is everything Sidney ever wanted in a man, but when things get hot and heavy Peter shows her the door. Sidney takes the walk of shame and leaves. It’s the end of the worst blind date ever. Her life couldn’t possibly reach higher levels of suckage, but it does.

The next morning everything comes crashing down. The insanely hot guy from last night, the one that saw her half naked, is teaching at the front of the class room.

Damaged Excerpt

He watches me as I try to crank the engine. It doesn’t start. It doesn’t catch. I look at the little gauges and notice the battery. He’s standing next to me now. “So, you’re a mechanic?”
I shake my head, “I just pretend to be. It makes for more interesting evenings.” I grin at him, not sure what’s come over me. I never talk random guys, but it’s not like he’s random anymore, right? Hot guy’s face falls and I realize that he believes me. “I’m just kidding. I know a little about cars. For instance, I know this one isn’t going anywhere tonight.”
“And why’s that?”
“Your alternator’s dead. Either that or you shoved a hamster up the tailpipe—” My face falls. I wonder if he did something stupid. Guys do all sorts of stupid things to talk to girls. I get out of his car and slam the door. Then, I tilt my head and cross my arms over my chest. “Tell me that that isn’t the reason the car won’t start.”
He laughs and presses his hand to his chest, shocked that I’d say such a thing. “No, I didn’t do anything like that! And correct me if I’m wrong, but you were the one who came onto me first. I didn’t get here early and sabotage my own car just so I could meet a girl, who I didn’t know was coming.” The way he smiles is contagious. He runs his hands through his dark hair, like he wishes he could say more, but he doesn’t. The corners of his mouth curve and he gives me a look that makes tingles slip over my skin.
I step toward him, smiling too wide. “I did not come onto you!”
“You did. Right back in there.” He points toward the restaurant. His face is serious, all smooth features and big blue eyes. “You sat at my table and made me very uncomfortable. I haven’t had such a beautiful woman overtly hit on my like that before. It was quite embarrassing.”
My smile is making it hard for my mouth to hang open in shock. It keeps opening and then my grin snaps my lips shut. “I did not!” I know he’s teasing me, but I can’t stop. I don’t want it to stop and I realize that I’m actually laughing.
His arms are folded over his chest. He taps a finger to his lip like he’s remembering. “You did. You ordered wine and just assumed that I’d put out. Really Sidney, you’ll have to learn to control yourself a little better from now on.” He looks at me out of the corner of his eye, as he glances at his car.
I know he’s baiting me, but I can’t ignore him. I can’t walk away and I don’t want to. He smiles at me with those wicked lips. It makes me want to kiss him, hard. I change tactics. I want to throw him so far off balance that he falls over. I step in front of him and look up at him from under my lashes. “Okay, you caught me. I like you. I want you. I can’t keep my hands off of you. But tell me this, beautiful man; why should I bother controlling myself when I can tell that you want me so much?” Slowly, I step closer to him. Our bodies are a breath apart as I look up into his eyes.
He’s smiling and manages to say, “You shouldn’t.” He watches me, waiting to see what I’ll do. I feel my heart pounding. His eyes drift to my lips and back to my eyes. Every inch of my body flickers to life. I want to feel his hands on me. I want his lips on my mouth. From that look in his eye, I know he wants it too.
I lean in closer, teasing him. I feel his breath on my lips. His scent fills my head and I breath him in. “Are you always this irresistible?”
“Are you always this coy? Do you just flirt, leaving your lips way too close to a man that desperately wants to kiss you?”

Giveaway

(1) This giveaway is US Only: Kindle Fire Prize Pack: Contains 1 Kindle Fire, a Signed copy of DAMAGED, plus all of H.M. Ward’s romance ebooks: DAMAGED, New York Times & USA Today Bestseller SCANDALOUS, SCANDALOUS 2, THE ARRANGEMENT VOL 1 -5, SECRETS 1-5, THE SECRET LIFE OF TRYSTAN SCOTT 1-4, and CHRISTMAS KISSES. (Value $230)
Enter by clicking here.
(2) An ebook copy of Damaged is up for grabs and this includes international entries. Just click here to enter.

About the Author

H.M. Ward

NEW YORK TIMES & USA TODAY Bestselling author H.M. Ward is a native New Yorker living in Texas. Ward was featured in the Washington Post for her debut novel Demon Kissed. Romance series by H.M. Ward include Secrets, Scandalous, The Arrangement, and The Secret Life of Trystan Scott.

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Book Review & Giveaway: Fire Country by David Estes

Fire CountryTitle: Fire Country (Country Saga #1)

Author: David Estes

Rating: 5 of 5 stars

Blurb: In a changed world where the sky bleeds red, winter is hotter than hell and full of sandstorms, and summer’s even hotter with raging fires that roam the desert-like country, the Heaters manage to survive, barely.

Due to toxic air, life expectancies are so low the only way the tribe can survive is by forcing women to procreate when they turn sixteen and every three years thereafter. It is their duty as Bearers.

Fifteen-year-old Siena is a Youngling, soon to be a Bearer, when she starts hearing rumors of another tribe of all women, called the Wild Ones. They are known to kidnap Youngling girls before the Call, the ceremony in which Bearers are given a husband with whom to bear children with.

As the desert sands run out on her life’s hourglass, Siena must uncover the truth about the Wild Ones while untangling the web of lies and deceit her father has masterfully spun.

My Review: Fire Country starts off with a girl, surviving in a dystopian world. She is trying to mentally prepare herself for the traditions of her tribe, The Heaters. All while dealing with bullying, an abusive father and circumstances beyond her means. She has a best friend, Circ, who she’s starting to see as possibly more than a friend but she knows their romance is impossible as there is a way for mating among the Heaters that doesn’t even allow them the possibility.

Siena, the main character, was real. Her insecurities, I very much understood, related to and believed. She’s not only dealing with insecurities and emotional and physical scars but there is a world of suspense and conspiracy going on around her. She puts herself in situations to try and unravel these mysteries and boy, was I in for a treat. Siena has a strong will and an even sharper mind. She is physically lacking- too skinny and weak. Yet this does not stop her. She learns to accept who she is, her body and see what she thought were negatives as positive. I love her transformation and seeing her become as physically strong as she is mentally.

So characters: As already covered, Sienna is awesome. Circ, her best friend, is beautiful. He is there for her. Both emotionally and physically. He is strong, a warrior, and uses his strength to protect his people and her. Their romance is truly something I loved. Perry OMG, Perry! He is fricking amazing. I love his banter with Sienna. He has such a prickly personality (Ha!) and dry sense of humor and I loved him! If his name was anywhere on the page, I laughed. And then laughed some more. The best thing about Perry? So much about him is amazing but I won’t spoil the best part.

Estes writes in a way that allows for the reader to completely immerse themselves in the novel. From the language to the imagery to emotions that run so pure that you sometimes forget yourself while reading. You laugh and cry and mourn and leap with joy. Speaking of laughs, there was something I thought of after finishing this novel that I just want to share. Have any of you watched Laugh At My Pain a comedy special by Kevin Hart? He has this ongoing joke throughout the show. He’s joking about money and how when he can’t afford something he explains his financial situation, “Because the way my bank account is set up… I have a checking and a savings but all the money is in my savings…” The more he tells it, the funnier it becomes. Estes, did something to that effect in Fire Country. An ongoing joke that even in the most suspenseful or heated moments cause a laugh. This novel gave me an insight to Estes’ sense of humor and I gotta say, you are a funny man!

The novel ended well and after all the bangs and fireworks one would expect of a grand finale and then the pace slows to fill in all the blanks that we wondered about throughout the novel. It also set the tone for the sequel, which quite honestly, I’m looking forward to. I also know this series is described as a sister series to The Moon Dwellers, but I didn’t really understand it at first. Now I do and I feel that these books, in both series, are a must read.

*I received a free copy of this novel from the author in exchange for an honest review.

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