The Last Glass
by T. M. Lazar
Release Date: October 24, 2014
Genre: YA Paranormal Romance
Tori Knight moves to a small New York town where things aren’t always what they seem. Though reluctant to leave her old life behind, she meets new friends, and falls for a guy.
Crispin DeMortimer is the most popular boy at Grimmsburg High. He had a summer fling with Natalia, the rich doctor’s daughter, and also heir to a secret society. However, when he sees Tori for the first time, he feels an instant connection with her, one he has never felt before. Lucky for him, Tori feels the same.
It’s the start of a new chapter, for both Tori and Crispin, and Grimmsburg, NY is where untold secrets will be revealed, and challenges beyond anyone’s imagination will be brought forth. Will the secrets of Grimmsburg bring Tori and Crispin together, or will these life changing secrets be too much for them both?
This is book one in the series The Creatures of Grimmsburg by T.M. Lazar.
This dream was different. I saw Crispin. I actually saw him! I was wearing a red gown.
“You look lovely.” Crispin said, as he held out his hand for me to take.
“Thank you.” I took his hand in mine. I let him lead me out onto a balcony.
I noticed Crispin was wearing a suit that was dark red velvet. My breath caught as saw the view. It was incredible; the moon shined brightly on us, I watched the shadows dance around. Within all the beauty, there was something very wrong about being here. Deep down I knew it was something bad. I just didn’t know what exactly.
I looked up into his beautiful face and asked, “Crispin, why are we here?” I did my best to keep my voice steady as I spoke.
Letting go of my hand he sighed. “This is an amazing view, isn’t it?” I let out a sigh and nodded. He continued, “However, that’s not why I brought you here.”
My voice shook as I spoke, “Crispin?”
He smiled, “I’m terribly sorry that it has to be this way, Tori.” My heart started to race as I caught the sight of his fangs glistening in the moonlight. I covered my mouth and shook my head.
“No!” Crispin laughed at my denial. “No. No.” he stopped laughing as he stared at me. There was no more emotion left in his face, only hunger, in his red eyes.
I screamed, as I ran away from the balcony. I screamed for help, but no one heard me. I glanced over my shoulder to see Crispin was no longer on the balcony. I was startled and fell, as I came face to face with Crispin. I was terrified. I scrambled away from, him but he walked faster. Crispin bent down and picked me up. He held me by the throat. Hot tears rolled down my cheeks. “Please don’t, Crispin.” I whimpered. His grip loosened, he tilted my head to expose my neck even more. “Please, no.” I pleaded. Crispin just smiled. Then he sank his fangs into my throat. I screamed.
“Tori, Tori, Tori wake up!” Sophie shook me. My eyes popped open. I sat up and brought my hands to my throat. Tears stung my eyes. My breathing was rapid. Finally, it slowed. Sophie looked at me, terrified. “Are you okay?” She reached out to touch my arm and I flinched.
I dropped my hands into my lap. I shook my head, “a nightmare, a real bad one.”
What stopped me was her! Beautiful long honey brown hair and those eyes! Man, she was smoking hot. She had on a tight blue top that made her tits look awesome. As I kept running my eyes down her body, I saw the faded skinny jeans that molded to her curves perfectly. And fuck, she had to have on cowboy boots. I have a thing for chicks in cowboy boots! I ran my eyes back up her incredible body and she caught me staring.
A smile came across her face as the blood crept into her cheeks. She looked away slowly, then back to me. I watched as she slowly lifted her head and our eyes met again and my breath caught. I have to know her! As we continue to stare at each other, I could feel my teeth throb from the pain of my fangs wanting to elongate. This feeling felt intense, I never felt like this before, I wanted her to be mine! I wanted to claim her as my own I would to protect her. I wanted to… Where the hell were these thoughts coming from?
“Crispin? Are you okay?” Carly waved her hand in my face. When I snapped out of whatever just happened I looked at Carly, “What?” I asked annoyed. “You were…” Carly trailed off as she looked at the girl, “Oh my God,” Carly whispered. What did Carly know that I didn’t? I looked back at the girl. Who was she, and why am I feeling things for her?
T.M. Lazar lives in upstate NY. She started writing her debut novel, The Last Glass, at the age of 16. At the age of 19, she made her dream a reality. She was signed by Entertwine Publishing. Along with writing, she is an avid reader, and loves to spend time with her family and friends, camping, swimming, drawing, dancing, and just hanging out! She will also be starting college soon, and majoring in Liberal Arts and Literature.
Sounds amazing, right? Already added to my TBR.
- The structure of this story is amazingly well done. The way it’s set up, letting the reader into multiple minds and revealing secrets hidden from the main characters does wonders for adding suspense and foreboding. The tension is high and continues to mount, you keep waiting for the final axe to drop on their happiness because, as the reader, you know it’s inevitable buy even with this knowledge, the hope for a happily ever after is overwhelming.
- Sebastian is a mouth-wateringly sexy CEO with a chip on his shoulder. He’s a playboy with a habit of using women for his desires them tossing them to the curb the same night. He’s brazen, animalistic, and hyper-sexual. Be ready to blush at his raunchy thoughts, they’re beyond steamy and irresistible. Sebastian is haunted by his past and immensely selfish. He wants what he wants and he always gets it. He loves a good conquest and everything in life has come easy to him. Yet, he’s left psychologically scarred by a mistake from his past, so much so that he can’t escape and despite how much he wants to punish himself, he is a decent human being that deserves happiness.
- Sebastian and Skylar are fire and ice. One moment they’re hot and bothered, the next they’re pushing each other away in bursts of anger and heated words. Sebastian is enamored with Skylar, she becomes his world, his everything, and the sheer extent of his emotions is breathtaking. His love knows no bounds and even when it kills him, he resists temptation because he knows he’ll break her. He’s always doing sweet, thoughtful things for Skylar because he is enchanted by her smile. He aims to light up her world and make her forget the nightmares of her past. He’s also one of those delicious men who crowd space in an almost predatory way but he makes Skylar feel safe and protected.
- The sex scenes are complex moments of passion and giving. They’re aggressive, sweltering throes of sexual tension mixed with slow, sensual love making.
- Marie, the bakery owner, is hilarious. She’s that saucy, perverse older woman who is constantly winking and making jokes. Plus, her creation will leave you hungry for pastry.
- Lucas is a sweetheart. He’s charming, lovable, playful, and always attentive. He soothes and delights Skylar, and despite his tainted sexual past, is quite the romantic. Some of his thoughts will leave you breathless and eager for his next section.
- While this is a sinfully sexy romance, there are many dark, disturbing elements. Skylar’s assaults are horrific. Every single incident is a devastating, violent, and extremely detailed encounter. There’s no telling is Skylar will make it out alive. The descriptions of the physical assault are enough to stick in your thoughts for some time. I don’t think I’ve ever felt more scared for a character.
- Trevor and Brandon are sick, disgusting human beings. Their lascivious and disturbed thoughts on women and what they want to do to Skylar are nauseating and graphic. The blunt way they talk about scarring and ruining her made me feel physically sick. Mia Michelle perfectly captures the psychotic and twisted minds of these men. The anxiety escalates throughout and despite Skylar’s bliss, you know the worst is to come and it’s heartbreaking.
- Skylar is courageous, ambitious, and an all around genuinely great person. She works herself to the bone to support her sister, after every traumatic, horrible thing that happens to her, she picks herself up and remains strong for her little sister. It’s remarkable that she can even function after some of these incidents, let alone start to thrive. Skylar’s hopes and dreams are as beautiful and pure as she is, she thirsts for love and has so much to give. Truly, Skylar is a model for recovery and rebirth. Her smiles dazzle and bewitch, she has the world wrapped around her finger and takes no notice, she’s that modest. Her emotions are complex and conflicted. Her attraction to both Lucas and Sebastian is a source of agony and yearning.
- If you’re looking for something more than just a tasty CEO romance, something with emotional carnage and devastating secrets, pick this up now.
- Some of the sexual phrasing was noticeably repetitive, especially in terms of self stimulation.
- There were a few typos.
- Elements of the plot seemed to fizzle out and felt almost random. The incident with the guy in the nightclub Jaxx. There was a totally creepy and semi-sadistic section told from his perspective that hinted at future assault that added serious tension. There was a feeling that Skylar would never be safe, that someone would always be the hunter and she, the vulnerable, unsuspecting prey. On top of that, for a character that is so close to her sister, Sophie, practically like a second mother, her presence is largely absent and you could feel the void. I would have loved to see more sisterly bonding or at least small interactions to establish and confirm their relationship. There was more bonding with the bakery lady than her own sister or even best friend, Kylie.
- Everyone is weirdly obsessed with Skylar and it’s unrealistic. It’s not simply that she’s extremely attractive, it’s a psychologically crippling need to be with her, so much that it almost feels toxic and dangerous for both parties.
Other Books in the Series
My top ten films to watch on Halloween.
Halloween is, for me, almost as exciting as Christmas. It incorporates just about all the things I love: horror, magic, sugar and dressing-up! So if, like me, you have organised a bit of a Halloween gathering and want a list of great films to watch through the night, then look no further. Here’s my top ten frightening movies, without spoilers:
1) Sinister - I originally watched this at the cinema, it scared the hell out of me. It was the first film I’ve ever seen that, when the lights came up, strangers were nodding at one another for comradery! Still scary on the small screen and very apt for me as it features an author as the protagonist.
4) Dog Soldiers – werewolves when they were scary rather than romantic. Furry fun with special forces hunks. It also features one of my fav actors Sean Pertwee (who should have been the new Doctor Who!)
I also wanted to give a quick nod to a couple of TV shows too – scares can be just as intense on the small screen. At the moment I’m loving ‘The Strain’ and ‘The Walking Dead’ and am eagerly awaiting the start of the next American Horror: Freak Show.
So settle in, pop some corn, grab a handful of sweets and turn off the lights. Watching a couple of these films through the night on Halloween will not only be entertaining but will keep you awake for the night, and that might be the only thing that keeps you safe…
“I am Britannia. I am your protector. I will fend off the hungry hordes of undead hands that reach toward you. I am your steadfast defender. I will stand between you and the zombie masses as they try to taste your flesh. I am strong, unyielding, and dedicated to your survival. All I ask from you… is your blood.”
A five-hundred-year-old bloody game of vengeance will need to be put on hold if vampires are to survive the zombie uprising. Britannia and Nicholas, bitter enemies and the only two surviving vampires left in London, have to work together to save un-infected humans and deliver them safely to a vampire stronghold in the Scottish Highlands. Unable to drink the zombie ‘bad blood’, the remaining vampires need the humans to stay alive. But will the vampires tell the survivors who they are and what they want from them? Will Britannia be able to hold back her vengeance for the greater good? Is survivor Josh the reincarnation of Britannia’s murdered true love? And can she bring herself to deliver him to the ‘safe’ hold? Survival instincts run deep, but bad blood can run deeper.
I guess I’ve always been a storyteller, not in a ‘liar liar pants on fire’ kind of way, although I do work in advertising! When I was little, kids would crowd around me in the playground and I’d tell them tales of blood soaked horror filled with vampires, werewolves, ghosts and more. Yes, most would consider me a disturbed child, but my playmates couldn’t help themselves, they’d huddle around me every break time like an ancient tribe feeding off the fear; and that’s how I learned that horror stories hold a certain power, no matter what some might say, everyone is addicted to a good scare, especially if it is somewhat rooted safely in unrealistic beings… or are they unrealistic?
Writing was really a natural progression. Right now I’m obsessed with writing: a YA Urban Fantasy novel, a Paranormal Romance novella series, and several short horror stories! So I’m currently living in a functional fiction coma – and loving it!
I’ve so far been published in 5 countries: USA, UK, Australia, Ireland and Canada and had short stories included in 40 anthologies with over 17 publishers.
Chosen (Daughters of the Sea #3) by Kristen Day
RELEASE DAY BLITZ
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!
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.
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.
True Colors & Two Faced by Melissa Pearl
October 20th to October 24th, 2014
Caitlyn 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…
- 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.
Caitlyn 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.
- 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.
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.”
If you like any of the following, you’ll enjoy this:
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.
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.