Release Day Blitz: Chosen-Kristen Day

Chosen (Daughters of the Sea #3) by Kristen Day



cooltext1690355244 copyThe essence of who we are lies not in what we have, but in what we are willing to give up. Because in the end, Time and Tide wait for no one.

After sacrificing all that she had, the evil princess of the Underworld is still successful in her bid to tear Finn from Stasia’s life. In the midst of her search to reclaim him, Stasia is summoned to the island nation of Cyprus to take part in an age-old ritual; unveiling the missing pieces of her ancestry and re-igniting an ancient war. As she struggles to both save Finn’s soul and free Carmen’s mind, Stasia’s bravery and determination will be pushed to its breaking point. A dark storm is forming on the horizon, and the forces who are vying to destroy her may be much closer than she thinks. Destiny weaves a sticky web of evil, betrayal, and revenge that can only be undone by the purity of love and the soul’s unyielding will to survive. In the last installment of the Daughters of the Sea trilogy, the past will collide with the present as Stasia’s future hangs in the balance. The prophecy that paved the way for her new life may indeed be the very thing that strips her of the ones she loves the most.

Haven’t started the Daughters of the Sea series yet? Start it off with Forsaken!



cooltext1690355244 copyOnce you’ve been touched by darkness, it never leaves you…

Abandoned by her parents as an infant; seventeen year old Hannah spent her childhood wading through countless foster families until being adopted by the Whitmans three years ago. Unfortunately, Atlanta’s high society wasn’t quite ready for Hannah…or the strange events that plague her

Chilling visions of murder, unexplained hallucinations, and a dark, mysterious guy who haunts her nightmares all culminate to set in motion a journey of self-discovery that will challenge everything she’s ever believed; not to mention her sanity.

Sent to live at The House of Lorelei on Bald Head Island, NC for ‘kids like her’, Hannah quickly realizes things are not what they seem. Her fellow ‘disturbed’ teens are actually the descendants of mythical Sea Gods and Goddesses. And so is she.

But when Finn, the ghost from her dreams, appears in the flesh; her nightmares become reality and her dark visions begin coming true. Inexplicably drawn to him, she can’t deny the dangerous hold he has on her heart. The deadly secrets he harbors will ultimately test her courage and push the boundaries of her love.

She must decide if she is ready to embrace the ancient legend she is prophesized to be a part of. The fate of all the descendants will forever depend upon it.


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I am a southern belle at heart with a crazy streak that desperately tries to escape at every opportunity. I love all things nostalgic, rustic, and quirky. I’ve been told I see the world through rose-colored glasses, but I prefer to think of them as kaleidoscope glasses – swirling and morphing reality into something I can digest (who hasn’t pretended those pasty lima beans were really kiwi strawberry jelly beans?).

When I’m not writing I’m making jewelry, painting, drinking sweet tea, watching the discovery channel, or going on random adventures in the mountains of North Carolina with my amazing husband.

Pleasant reading,

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ARC Reviews: True Colors & Two Faced-Melissa Pearl

The Masks series

 True Colors & Two Faced by Melissa Pearl


October 20th to October 24th, 2014


cooltext1712921505 copyCaitlyn Davis always cruised through life, not being the type to ruffle feathers or involve herself in high school drama. That is, until a chance encounter with a strange, homeless man changes everything.

Suddenly, Caitlyn has the ability to see behind people’s masks. She discovers that her life isn’t as simple as she imagined and high school is filled with secrets…some very sinister ones.

Unable to ignore her new gift, Caitlyn embarks on a mission to learn why one of her friends suddenly appears terrified, but masks her fear with a bright, smiling veneer. Will Caitlyn’s new ability lead her into hot water? Or is her new found vision a blessing that will expose her friends’ true colors?

Her quest will lead Caitlyn to lose friends, stand up for those in need, and even find love.

At Palisades High School every face tells a story…

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  • The concept of the story, of being able to see behind people’s masks and gleaning the truth that people are hiding is compelling and really draws you into the story. As Caity learns to peel back the layers, you’re forced to ask yourself what you might be missing and if everything you had an inkling of unease about is real.
  • The chemistry between Eric and Caity is perfect. It’s a slow burn that eases into a beautiful warmth that leaves no doubt about the undeniable respect and love between them.
  • Eric is a sweetheart. He’s compassionate, understanding, and willing to go to the ends of the Earth for Caity. His past is filled with heartbreak and hurt and yet, he’s hopeful and searching for the kind of love that will transcend all hardships and brighten his life.
  • The topic of abusive relationships is not often discussed in YA and I think it’s because often people are hesitant to write about it or simply are more comfortable with placing it in an adult category. Kudos to you, Melissa for writing about something so heart wrenching and conveying the fear, the unease, and the authentic, raw emotions that threaten to overwhelm and break.
  • Indie is a bittersweet character. She’s so strong, her fear is heartbreaking and you will feel compelled to want to protect her and so angry at her suffering.
  • The antagonists are so creepy, rough, and violent that some of the more graphic scenes will really turn the blood in your veins to ice. You will be cheering these characters on, hoping beyond hope that they will be enough to outsmart these villains and come out of their obstacles if not unscathed then triumphant.
  • Caity goes through such growth that it’s almost a rebirth. The magical powers she’s given by the homeless man awaken what she pushed aside for her reign with the populars. She remembers that kind, honest girl who is eager to help those in need who was raised by great parents who supplied her with strong morals. The struggle within herself to conform or fight is something that most high schoolers have to go through before they find who they want to be and what will make them happy and okay with themselves. Although some of her behavior is a little reckless, her unswerving desire to aid those who are being hurt is really as remarkable as it is admirable.


  • I’m torn between loving Caity and wanting to strangle her out of confusion. As the protagonist, in some respects she is really strong. (I talked about this in the Pros section) Her personality is split. When she is acting like your average insecure yet determined heroine she is wonderful and easy to relate to but in some sections she has some weird phrases and word choice that make her seem like a 90-year-old cat lady. I understand that her parents are much older, that these might be the clichéd colloquialisms she’s used to but as a popular teenage girl it’s a little unbelievable. Her weakness is her aversion to drama. She passively sits by and takes abuse from people who she calls her friends and naïvely believes the best in people. It’s crazy that she can’t see the monsters within her best friends when they’re openly slapping her in the face.


cooltext1712921505 copyCaitlyn Davis has an unusual gift. She knows exactly how people feel. Everyone wears a mask, but she sees the hidden truth. This ability has changed her life, both for the better and worse. She can choose to ignore what she sees…but what happens when it involves the guy she loves?

Eric Shore knew getting involved with a girl who could read people was risky, but he couldn’t help himself. Caitlyn is gorgeous and he loves being with her. Their relationship is going great…until she tells him that his step-brother and star basketball player, Connor, is doing drugs. Having looked up to the guy for years, Eric just can’t buy it. Things only get worse when Caitlyn questions the true nature of Eric’s favorite teacher.

The first year at college is supposed to be amazing, but theirs is off to a rocky start. As masks are peeled away, secrets will be exposed, dangers will be revealed, and both must decide out of the people closest to them, who is telling the truth…and who is being two-faced.

cooltext1719331023 copy4/5 Stars


  • Caity and Eric are quickly becoming one of my favorite couples. They know each other so well and because of that they’re constantly jeopardizing their relationship trying to protect each other. They’re hyper aware of each other’s feelings and do everything in their power to ease worry and amp up the happiness. Caity and Eric have the light and floaty love that feels like cloud 9. You can feel the adoration pouring off the pages. Eric’s sections, how he views Caity as perfect not simply because she’s gorgeous but because of her big heart is swoon worthy. 
  • Eric’s past is emphasized in a whole new light. All of his fears about Caity’s reckless behaviours, his underlying paranoia about people leaving, and his reluctance to date Caity at first are all explained by small snippets that have scarred and weared on his soul. Eric’s disillusionment and reluctance to believe Caity’s dislike of those he admires is sad. The hurt little boy, the one who has suffered a life of disappointment when it comes to people staying and caring for him is a dull ache that resonates throughout the story.
  • Drug abuse, corruption, gambling, and the dangers of mixing even legal substances like Adderall is a potentially life-threatening and disastrous lifestyle that permeates many college campuses and is not talked about enough. The hyperness, the anxiety, the dehydration, and heart-racing effects of Adderall mixed with organic elements or energy drinks could kill and sometimes does. More awareness of the scary reality of what can happen when taking drugs not prescribed to individual NEEDS to happen, especially in YA. Melissa did a fantastic job capturing the fear and visual signs of these drugs.
  • Another important element of this story was being drugged, and not always associated with date rape. Memory loss, inability to identify where the drugging took place, and having no idea what happened, blacking out is a terrifyingly real and traumatizing subject. Conner’s puzzlement and later, anxiety over his missing memories is enough to put anyone on edge and makes you rethink the possibility of being drugged for reasons other than date rape.
  • SPOILER SKIP IF HAVEN’T READ: Nicole’s story. This is something of nightmares and it’s particularly horrifying because it happens all the time. What’s worse is that Nicole was in a supposedly safe area, monitored by what should have been trustworthy individuals and she was assaulted against her will with no memory, only pictures. I can’t even imagine how traumatic that would be. Nicole is shaking, mortified, and manipulated all because of something out of her control. I screamed for her and for any girl this story really hits home because it could happen to anyone.


  • The puzzle pieces were a little obvious. It was frustrating waiting for the protagonists to put everything together.
  • Caity’s insecurity drove me crazy. She’s full of doubts. For someone who can see beneath the masks and gets so infuriated when Eric questions her abilities, she’s the hardest on herself. Everything is up in the air and she’s terrified that Eric will leave her because of her powers despite knowing that’s he’s enamored with her. Between Caity’s lack of confidence in herself and her insistence that she “can’t”, it contradicts her bravery and thirst for justice.

cooltext1718229341 copyMelissa

Melissa Pearl was born in Auckland, New Zealand, but has spent much of her life abroad, living in countries such as Jordan, Cyprus and Pakistan… not to mention a nine month road trip around North America with her husband. “Best. Year. Ever!!” She now lives in China with her husband and two sons. She is a trained elementary teacher, but writing is her passion. Since becoming a full time mother she has had the opportunity to pursue this dream and her debut novel hit the internet in November 2011. Since then she has continued to produce a steady stream of books. Recently she signed with Evatopia Press and her first Evatopia book was released in February 2014 – True Colors, The Masks Series #1. She is very excited to be trying out new things this year while continuing to publish under her own name as well. She has six books releasing in 2014 and is excited about writing each and every one of them.

“I am passionate about writing. It stirs a fire in my soul that I never knew I had. I want to be the best writer I can possibly be and transport my readers into another world where they can laugh, cry and fall in love.”

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Release Day Blitz & Giveaway: Hotwire-Cindy M. Hogan


Tour: Hotwire by Cindy HoganHotwire
by Cindy M. Hogan
A Christy Novel #2
Publication Date: October 21, 2014
Genres: Action / Adventure, Contemporary, Young Adult

Purchase from AmazonPurchase from B&NPurchase from KoboPurchase from iBookstorePurchase from Smashwords cooltext1712921505 copyDivision spy Christy Hadden can’t wait for her latest assignment posing as a student at a prestigious New York City academy and car thief extraordinaire.

The best part of the mission is her attractive handler, Jeremy, and her new team. The worst part? The sociopath masquerading as the academy’s most popular guy.

But soon she realizes the car thieves are much more than they seem. Her simple spying mission becomes more dangerous than anyone imagined. If the organization discovers her true identity, they won’t hesitate to kill her, and if she fails, others will suffer the same fate.

Young Adults, teens and adults will love this exciting suspenseful adventure with a dash of romance. You won’t want to put it down.

Add to Goodreads

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cindy author pic colorCindy M Hogan is the bestselling and award winning author of the Watched trilogy, a YA suspense series with a dash of romance. She has since branched off to write a mystery, Gravediggers, that won Best YA novel of 2013, a contemporary romance, Confessions of a 16-Year-Old Virgin Lips, and the first in a spy series, Adrenaline Rush, the 2nd of which, Hotwire, is due out in Oct. 2014.


She graduated with a BA in education and is inspired by the unpredictable teenagers she teaches. More than anything she loves the time she has with her own teenage daughters and wishes she could freeze them at this fun age. If she’s not reading or writing, you’ll find her snuggled up with the love of her life watching a great movie or planning their next party. Most of all, she loves to laugh.

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Release Day Blitz & Giveaway: Runaway-Brina Courtney


Runaway (Camryn Cruise #1) by Brina Courtney


cooltext1712921505 copyCamryn Cruise is not human. But she doesn’t know what she is. Not yet.

The world is falling apart and her only escape is Camp Silverlake where she frequently stayed as a child. But Camryn’s summers weren’t filled with crafting and swimming, they were spent learning combat skills and how to protect herself from the outside world.

Now she must return to Camp Silverlake to learn the truth, about who she is and she’ll discover the secret hidden within her blood. A secret that could save them all.

cooltext1718236401 copyThe Cryptid Chronicles Set!


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cooltext1718229341 copyBrina

Brina Courtney is a young adult author obsessed with chocolate, crime shows, and fantasy movies. She’s spent the last few years as an elementary teacher and a high school cheering coach. She lives in a small town in Pennsylvania with her husband and two very loud, small dogs.


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Pleasant reading,

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Release Day Blitz, Excerpt & Giveaway: Impossible-C.A. Gray

Originally posted on Young Adult Book Madness:


cooltext1756232230 copyIMPOSSIBLE is the final installment in the Piercing the Veil trilogy.

The Shadow Lord has the Philosopher’s Stone, and therefore an army of invincible penumbra. He also possesses the fragments of Excalibur, the legendary sword prophesied to be the instrument of either his own destruction, or that of the Child of the Prophecy. The sword, he knows, requires blood to be reforged… and he knows exactly whose blood he wants.

Meanwhile, the Watchers are desperate to steal back the fragments of Excalibur and find out how to reforge them before the Shadow Lord does. Isdemus places Peter and Lily in Carlion’s sister cities for safe-keeping until the war begins. But Peter and Lily have an idea that might enable the Watchers to steal back the fragments, in spite of the Shadow Lord’s invincible army. Their plan requires them to travel halfway across the world, to an…

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ARC Review & Interview: Chasing the Stars-J.D. Rivera

Mackenzie Blanchard’s life wasn’t easy; never had been, never would be. She thought things were looking up when she started yet another new school her senior year. She made friends and was enjoying life the best she could.

One friendship turned into something more, and just when she felt safe, things were ripped apart.

Hayes Morgan had never cared about anyone but himself. He was living the life he wanted, just having fun. He never dreamed that he would fall for the new girl in school.

What started out as a sweet friendship turned into something he never thought possible, until she vanished…

Their paths collide a year after they last saw each other, but they are both harboring secrets. Will they be able to trust and love each other again, or will the secrets rip them apart forever?

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3.5/5 Stars

***I received this eARC in exchange for an honest review and participation in this blog tour.


  • When Hayes isn’t around other women, he’s charismatic, flirty, and just oozes sex appeal. He’s full of compassion and adoration for Mac, she’s his everything and he goes out of his way to make her feel like she lights up his life. This side of Hayes is way different than his partying side, who hits it and quits it, and then gets irate when girls talk to him after he got what he wanted. This Hayes charms and protects Mac, he always knows when she needs to be wrapped in his arms or keep quiet and just be there for her. Underneath all of his outlash, he’s an honest (brutally), wonderful guy who gives Mac something that she’s never had before, unconditional love. 
  • Domestic abuse is an emotional whirlwind of agony, heartache, depression that spirals into psychological trauma. It’s hard to read the physical beatings, which are graphic and coupled with screaming and verbal abuse, but it’s harder to see how it wears on Mac’s self-worth. A big part of Mac’s hesitancy to trust, to believe people can change, or to think that Hayes’ feelings for her might be real is because all of her life she’s been drilled in how worthless she is, how lazy, and horrible, and the fact that her mother stands by and watches, not saying anything when she cries out for help is heartbreaking. That Mac is able to overcome her abuse and open her heart to love is beautiful to read. She is still able to laugh and tease, and be the cheerful, gorgeous girl she is is beyond courageous, it’s pretty astounding and J.D. Rivera does an amazing job capturing the multiple layers of her character. 
  • Together, Hayes and Mac flip-flop between volatile and steamy. Their relationship is the perfect friendship, it’s easy-going, fun, and playful. The way these flirt and poke fun at each other sparks a sort of glow, I couldn’t stop smiling. The thoughtfulness and the way the get each other is romantic and natural. Other times, because they’re so stubborn, they clash and misunderstand each other. They both jump to conclusions and while Mac always thinks the worst, Hayes is perpetually confused. It’s dramatic, exhilarating, and made of sexual tension. 


  • Hayes Morgan is a complete and utter asshat. There, I’ve said it. Despite all of his redeeming qualities, which really is only his love for Mac, it doesn’t make up for the majority of the novel treating women like a misogynistic pig. Sure, you can be the kind of man who doesn’t “do” serious relationships, who lets girls know that their sexual encounter is a one-time, meaningless thing, but there’s no need to be an inconsiderate jerk about it. The way he talks to women was shocking, abrasive, and frankly made him really unlikable several times in the book. You can be a playboy and yes, you can treat women like crap but I cringed every time he threw out those scalding truths. If you feel like a woman you just used for sex is worthless and meant nothing, you don’t have to call her a whore and throw it in her face because you can’t deal with your own issues. On top of that, what killed me was that Mac got some twisted pleasure half the time when Hayes treated his one-night-stands rudely. Go ahead and feel wonderful that Hayes treats her like his Northern Star but the fact that she just brushes his insults aside and actually preens at some of it made me question just how much I admired Mac. Hayes verbal abuse was sickening and despicable at times, and although he is a “recovering” playboy or someone that is going through a great change in character, it outweighed his charm. 
  • Many of the secondary characters fell flat and sort of fizzled out midway.
  • One of the subthreads, namely, Hayes’ father’s political position and the importance of keeping their relationship secret seemed like a huge deal and then it became a non-issue. There was no backlash or any other mention of his dad’s political image, I expected more drama or at least a conclusion to this aspect of the story.

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  1. Chasing the Stars seems like a shift from your earlier new adult romances. How is this book different, what inspired you to write it?

Yes, it is a little different! I had a dream about these characters and I had to write their story. It varies in the fact that they are meeting in high school and it’s a young love, but they also go through a lot to get to the end.

  1. Lately there’s been a lot of buzz about people being “over” the New Adult trend. Do you feel new adult is just a trend? What are your thoughts on this?

I don’t really know to be honest. I just write whatever is in my head. So some books that I write might be New Adult and some might be something completely different.:)

  1. Have you ever thought about writing something paranormal? What do you love about contemporary?

I don’t think I could write paranormal but I’ll never say never. I’m not really sure what it is about contemporary but I’ve always loved it.

  1. Tell me about your Trying series.

Trying to Get Over You is about a couple in college that have been together for some time. They are presented with some obstacles and have to fight for their relationship.

  1. Is there anything you’d like readers to know about Chasing the Stars?

Chasing the Stars is an emotional read but I hope it’s also a great love story. I hope everyone loves Hayes as much as I do.

  1. What inspires you to write?

I’ve always been a people watcher. Usually while I’m watching them I’ll be making up some story about them in my head. If it’s not from people watching, it’s from a dream.

  1. What are some of your favorite romances? TV, movies, books.

The Notebook. I loved that book and movie. I also love Gabriel and Julia from Sylvain Reynard’s Gabriel’s Inferno.

  1. What is some advice you’d give aspiring writers?

I would tell them to write, write, write. Never give up on your dreams.

  1. Do you do anything particular when you write? Have a specific playlist or favorite writing snack?

I don’t listen to playlists but I do have to eat Chex Mix while writing. :)

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J.D. Rivera lives in Oklahoma with her husband and two boys. Her life consists of school projects, homework, cartoon shows, and little league sports. She loves Diet Mountain Dew, the OKC Thunder, costume jewelry, the beach, and reading.


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ARC Review: Amazon Burning-Victoria Griffith

Amazon Burning_CVRGoodreads/Amazon/B&N/Astor+Blue

***I received this ARC as a gift in exchange for an honest review via Astor&Blue Publishing.

cooltext1712921505 copyWhen 22-year-old aspiring journalist, Emma Cohen, is forced to flee the comforts of her NYU student life, she maneuvers an internship from her father at his newspaper in Rio de Janeiro.  There, Emma is immediately swept into a major news story–and a life-threatening situation–when a famous jungle environmentalist, Milton Silva, is mysteriously murdered.

Emma must now enter the Amazon rainforest with her father to investigate; both awed by the enormity and beauty of the Amazon, and appalled by its reckless destruction.  Not only will Emma have to brave the primal world of the Amazon, she must fight to survive the kidnappers, villains, corrupt activists, and indigenous tribes that lay in wait along the ever-twisting trail of the murder case.  Stretched to the brink, it’s up to Emma, her father and the dreamy news photographer, Jimmy, to unravel the mystery and live to tell the tale.

Amazon Burning by Victoria Griffith is a spectacular debut Young Adult novel.  Griffith’s powerful rendering of the Amazon rainforest forms the perfect, wildly exotic backdrop for this extraordinary tale of a young urban woman coming of age in the midst of intense conflict.

cooltext1719331023 copy3.5/5 Stars

+++I would not classify this as YA but more of a New Adult murder mystery or contemporary.


  • This cover is beautiful. It captivates, the colors explode off the book capturing the wild and untamed majesty of the Amazon. (Though I’m not too sure about that black purse).
  • The descriptions of the Amazon are bold, dark, and embrace the dangerous whimsy of the deepest recesses of the jungle. Between the landslides, the vicious animals, the uncertainty of life or death, it’s a precarious world that reeks of danger and corruption. The suspense mounts as each scene is laced with the unexpected and the anticipation of something sinister. 
  • Mystery, Nancy Drew style, weaves throughout the plot. There are clues that shout out, clues that are subtle, and those that are so seemingly random you don’t know what to make of them. The puzzle is tantalizing. You’re consumed with the desire to solve the riddle of the murder and everyone looks suspicious. It’s hard to know which characters to trust. 
  • I learned so much from this book. It was like being transported to a magical and slightly nightmarish dream world. Insight into the crime rings, the risks journalists take, the prevalence of guns and attacks on the streets were terrifying and enlightening. It really opened my eyes to issues in the Amazon in terms of environment and domestic crime. The Amazonian Indians, the Yanomami, I had no clue that they existed or any idea about how their culture words and interacts with the rest of Brazil. These tidbits of information were fascinating and show that Victoria did her research. 
  • Emma was an uncoventional protagonist. She’s headstrong and courageous but scared. She throws herself into stories, fighting for her career and refuses to give up on her dreams because something scandalous marred her image. Her fears are very real, of intimacy and trust but also her fear of what humanity is becoming and how we treat our fellow man. The scenes in the hospital were brutal, bleak, and disturbing but hopeful. There’s so much to be said about advocacy and the power a great journalist has in spreading the word and getting funding.
  • Jimmy is a bubbly, sexy, and funny male lead. He’s playful at some points and extremely serious in others. He’s devoted to his photography and very passionate about using the photos to make a statement. Paired with Emma, this duo is dynamic. They accentuate each other’s strengths and calm their nerves by getting lost in their chemistry. 


  • The subplots were left undeveloped and although they played a significant part in character growth and overall personality, there was not enough discussion. For example, Emma’s father, Mike, as a journalist was kidnapped by the Taliban and tortured, leaving him with severe nerve damage. This was mentioned briefly but it says a lot about how Mike deals with Emma’s aspirations and the events that happen later in the book. There’s a huge disconnect between this story, the near-rape sexual offense and battery lawsuit, and emotions. 
  • Environmental activism is a prominent aspect of this story but merely discussed, there wasn’t any in depth exploration into the politics. It seemed like, at first, because of the way the story was set up, that this would be the foundational motivation and guideline for the entire investigation but it gets lost as smuggling exotic animals, kidnapping, and the illegal gold trade get thrown into the plot.
  • The sex scenes alternated between flowery and blunt.

cooltext1718229341 copyAuthor Website

Victoria Griffith is the author of the award winning non-fiction picture book The Fabulous Flying Machines of Alberto Santos-Dumont (Abrams, 2011), which won numerous awards, including the prestigious Parents’ Choice. The book was recently translated into Portuguese for the Brazilian market and was also released in audio book version.

Before becoming a full-time author, Victoria spent twenty years as an international journalist, fifteen of those years as foreign correspondent for the UK’s Financial Times. During that time, she had fun writing on a wide range of topics, including Brazil’s Yanomami Indians, architecture, space exploration, the human genome, and the growth of the Internet. She even managed to fit in some children’s book reviews. Her most terrifying assignment was preparing lunch for Julia Child, who praised the Brazilian fish stew but refused to touch the blackberry dessert. Victoria lives in Boston with her husband and three daughters.

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