2017 YA Reading Challenge

For those of you who saw that sorry post I put up earlier with bullet points while I struggled with this graphic program, I apologize, that was just sad. Anyways I know this is a little late, but odds are if you’ve already read a book this year, it probably fits somewhere on this list. 

Same deal as last year: 52 weeks, 52 books. Easy peasy. 

This year I really tried to be inclusive and get all sorts of contemporary issues and diversity in here. I want you to branch out as readers, to learn new cultures, to keep up on real issues-even if they’re fictionalized. Reading is a wonderful educational process. So here it is, I hope you enjoy. Explore, reach, tackle some new themes and genres. 

Tell me what you’re reading, what you’re excited about, recommend books. Help others complete this list and mostly, have fun. 

Side note: This can fit in all age ranges. It’s not ONLY for YA. Apply it as you will. 

2017

As always, happy reading!

Jordan

 

Release Day Blitz: Austin & the Magical Jawbreaker by Austin Hildenbrand with Heather Hildenbrand

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Austin’s normal 5th grade life is changed forever when he eats a magical jawbreaker that gives him superpowers. Now, it’s up to him to defeat the city’s evil candy-stealing villains starting with Tootsie and her chocolate minions.

Will Austin’s sweet-toothed superpowers be enough? Read on and find out!

This sounds super fun!

Jordan

 

 

Promo #Free & Giveaway: A Stone In the Sea by A.L. Jackson

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“A passionate ride of secrets, surprises, and steaming hot sex.”

~Penelope Ward, NYT Bestselling Author

“Sheer brilliance from start to finish.”

~MJ Loves to Read

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From NYT Bestselling Author A.L. Jackson…

Sunder lead singer Sebastian Stone is no stranger to trouble.

It follows him wherever he goes.

From his track record, he should have known Shea Bentley would be a problem. But the soft, innocent Southern girl was all he could see. All he wanted to see. Now they’re both drowning in a sea of desire, sinking hopelessly into a world of lust, and their passion refuses to let them up for air.

No matter how much he wants that to be enough…Shea has an inescapable past. One she would do anything to keep running from.

But some secrets never die.

If her history is dragged from the depths, it could tear his world apart. He has to decide if she’s worth fighting the tide or if they should just sink like a stone in the sea.

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A.L. Jackson is the New York Times & USA Today Bestselling author of contemporary romance. She writes emotional, sexy, heart-filled stories about boys who usually like to be a little bit bad.

Her bestselling series include THE REGRET SERIES, CLOSER TO YOU, as well as the newest BLEEDING STARS novels. Watch for the next installments, STAY and STAND, coming in 2017.

If she’s not writing, you can find her hanging out by the pool with her family, sipping cocktails with her friends, or of course with her nose buried in a book.

Be sure not to miss new releases and sales from A.L. Jackson

Text “jackson” to 96000 to receive short but sweet updates

Snapchat or Instagram @aljacksonauthor

Dreamy reading, 

Jordan

 

 

Blog Tour, ARC Review, and Excerpt: Demon Dialysis by Jennifer Siddoway

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Demon Dialysis - Book OneAmazon/Goodreads

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Inspired by the Rumpelstiltskin fairy tale, Wynnona Hendricks finds herself caught between the realms of Heaven, Hell, and Earth, fighting for her right to live.

The Demon Lord, Aidan, has activated her latent powers carefully hidden behind a mortal facade and now, she must conquer the Seven Deadly Sins or be sent to Hell herself as one of his minions. The only one who seems to believe in her is Caleb, the angel who chose to spare her life rather than risk the shedding of innocent blood, but by doing so, may have started a war between the factions, throwing the Mortal Realm into mayhem.

Follow Wynn as she fights to protect her family from being ripped apart, including her mother, who isn’t what she seems.

ExcerptFocus, I commanded myself sternly. Belphegor laughed at my apparent failure, but then a curious wrinkle came to his eye. His faces twisted into an unnatural and uncomfortable grimace. “What are you—doing…?”

“You’re the one who told me to eat, don’t you want to fill your own belly?” I mocked him callously. “I thought you’d find it satisfying.”

His visible discomfort only encouraged me as I visualized what was happening inside, using everything I had to keep up the summoning charm. Below his fingers, the skin started pulsating and bulging as something stretched and pushed from the inside of his gut. He groaned at the pressure and discomfort of an alien presence adulterating his very being. If he was trying to stop me or attack, I couldn’t tell—my heart and blood were pumping so hard. His moans turned into wails and shrieks as his clutching fingers could not contain the writhing snakes that suddenly exploded from his body, dragging with them the oversized and redundant viscera that remained firmly entangled within their twisted throes.

I hardly had time to savor the wet, sizzling flops of roiling snake and entrails hitting the ground before the demon vanished with a final screech. I stooped, panting and seeing red, as I collapsed on the ground from expending so much energy. He had been right, the auras had made me stronger. I don’t think I could have summoned that on my own. My eyes drifted in and out of focus, but then the indistinct light before me coalesced into Caleb standing there in all his angelic glory. The way he was looking at me didn’t have the usual tenderness though, and I actually shrank from the harsh anger burning in his eyes.

“You mind telling me what in the world that was?” he demanded.

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***I received this eARC/book as a gift in exchange for an honest review via the author

Here’s What I Liked:

  • Flawed characters who struggle with temptation, morality, and recognize that good and evil reside in all of us. The fight against their inner demons against all-too-real demonic forces is an uphill battle. Wynn makes mistakes, she fights hard, and is not always successful, that makes her relatable and easy to sympathize with. 
  • The premise is tried and true, but has a special twist. It’s taken a step further than your traditional Heaven vs. Hell trope, adding on a whole world of other paranormal creatures and complexities that blend well in both the para and human worlds. 
  • Aidan is a brilliant take on Lucifer. He’s playful, seductive, and yet, surprisingly helpful. It almost seems like he has a heart buried somewhere deep and dark in his chest. The interactions with Wynn were dangerous, foreboding, and amusing, despite the sense that something terrible would happen. Aidan makes good on horrific threats one second and is sweet the next. You’ll never know if you can trust him. Delightfully complex. 
  • The ending. Epic, in your face, violent and sudden. Seriously brutal. You won’t see it coming and it’s so quick it hits harder. Emotional turmoil extreme. This made me, more than anything else, hunger for the next book. 
  • The deadly sin trials were creative and graphic. You’ll be able to picture everything and they really helped Wynn to grow. 
  • Cover love.

Here’s What I Disliked:

  • The pace. After the initial meeting with Caleb and Aidan, it’s achingly slow at times. The space between the first few chapters, the trials, and that explosive ending drag and you’ll wonder what actually happened in those pages. 
  • Instalove. Wynn’s attraction to Caleb is automatic and understandable. He’s super cute and a sweetheart. Plus, the way he vouches for her, serious knight in shining armor. After that scene and the verdict (purposely vaguebooking to prevent spoilers), they don’t have much interaction and what interaction they do have (up until almost the end of the book with the roof scene) feels like nostalgia or a flashback. It’s a lot of telling, not enough showing. I didn’t experience and live through Wynn’s character because there wasn’t the opportunity, at least romantically. There was more lead up to a romance with Aidan. On top of that, Wynn makes offhand comments about how close she and Caleb are that almost feel like a lie because their interactions weren’t that memorable, were far apart, and short. 
  • At the circle ruling where Wynn meets all the paranormal entities, it’s a rush of information that suckerpunches. All of these details at once were a little overwhelming. There’s one description after another of each of these people without names and then they come in and have names and it’s hard to keep track. The world building is also jam-packed in this tiny section. It would have functioned a bit better and been less intense if it had been more spaced out. 

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Jennifer is a Florida based, Indie Author who writes paranormal romance and fantasy for young adults. When she’s not busy writing or burying her nose in a book, Jennifer enjoys doing medieval reenactment with her husband and two children. Demon Dialysis is a contemporary Young Adult Fantasy and her debut novel.

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If you like any of the following, you’ll enjoy this:

Fantastic reading, 

Jordan

Book Blitz & Giveaway: Twisted by Christa Simpson

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Can a man and woman be “just friends?”

After graduating from law school with honours, Edwin Santora, Abigail’s occasional ex and handsome housemate, could get a job anywhere he wants. Of all the places to land, why does he take a position with her small firm? As if sharing a house with her irresistible ex isn’t bad enough, it quickly becomes the least of her concerns. When Edwin’s macho arrogance begins to seriously affect her dating life, Abigail starts to reconsider their friendship; not that Edwin believes a man and woman can be “just friends” anyway.

With Edwin’s swoon-worthy stunts and fierce persistence, Abigail finds herself catching feelings. When Edwin makes a friendly proposal, no-strings-attached, Abigail can’t resist.

After some sexy role playing, she finds herself dangerously in love and wrapped back up in Edwin’s powerful grip. When Abigail risks everything, revealing a treacherous little secret, will their friendship pass the test? Or will they give in to the mysterious forces trying to drive them apart?

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Excerpt

Edwin Santora’s eyes were on me the second our solid wood door clunked shut.  After kicking off my shoes and giving a silent wave to my brooding, shirtless roommate, I rushed directly upstairs taking two steps at a time.

Within seconds, Edwin was flying up the stairs behind me, all brawn and pride.  He stalked me down the hall, his large agile physique a shadow of stealth.

No matter how smooth Edwin thought he was, I could always sense when he was lurking around.

I disappeared into the bathroom, ignoring his approach, heart still racing, cheeks flushed with a healthy glow.  It had been way too long and it was time for me to move on with my life.  The days of Edwin and I were over and I had finally faced that fact.  For that reason, I trusted my matchmaking to an eager co-worker.  What else could I do?  I didn’t seem to have any luck finding myself a man.

Edwin filled the doorframe with his imposing shoulders.  “Where are you going all dolled up like that?”

I should have slammed the door shut behind me while I had the chance.  The last thing I needed now was Edwin giving me a hard time.  It had been months since my last date and let’s just say that it’s not possible for this one to go any worse than that one had.

After carefully touching up my mascara in the mirror, I twirled around to face him, my glossy, brown hair fanning out behind me.  “I got a date!”  I smiled from honest excitement, but I really didn’t have time to chat about it.

“Who is he?” Edwin pried.

“You don’t know him.”

Edwin’s chest flexed under my warm gaze, his abs held tight, sculpted from stone.  Oh, I love watching him sweat.  He narrowed his aqua eyes in response to my devious smile.  Then, as if on cue, the doorbell rang.

I made my way to the bathroom door, but Edwin boxed me out with his hip and took off ahead of me.  He hurried down the hall with swift, powerful strides, every muscle in his body twitching with adrenaline.  There was no point in trying to fight him for the front door.  He had me beat.

“Do you think you could put on a shirt, Eddie?  Please?”

Edwin shuffled down the stairs and ignored my request.  “I’ll get it,” he hollered.  He was all too eager to answer the door and his mischievous grin gave away his greedy intentions.

“Edwin, be good!” I warned, stopping at the top of the open staircase.

“What?  I’m always good.”  He flashed me a sly smile and raised his dark arched eyebrows.

I knew it meant trouble, as the butterflies danced nervously in my tummy.  Edwin had better not blow this one too.  He had a tendency of scaring away my dates.  It was getting old.  I clung to the wooden post, hoping the poor guy would pass the test.

Edwin opened the front door ever so slightly and started in on his usual act, deliberately blocking my view.  Bastard.  Then he cracked the door open a little farther, teasing, his generous back still in the way.

He folded his bulging arms over his impressive chest and stared down at my date with eyes dark and voice low.  “Can I help you?” he asked firmly, acting all macho.

I nearly burst out laughing and had to hide the smile on my face to show that I was not amused.  Even if I was.

“Is this the home of Abigail Jenkins?” the poor guy asked, hesitantly.

“Yes,” Edwin answered, but he didn’t invite him in.

“Edwin!” I warned, scowling at his back.  I’d had enough.  As I started down the stairs to intervene, I struggled to interpret their mumbling.  It was time that I took things into my own hands.

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authChrista Simpson is a small town Canadian girl who enjoys beaches, dancing and dirt track car races. She lives in Tilbury, Ontario, with her husband and two beautiful daughters. On an ideal day you’ll find her relaxing on the beach, reading by the poolside or getting into trouble with her girls. You’re more likely to find her procrastinating with her bestie, working her butt off or chauffeuring her active family around.

Christa delivers in modern day fantasies with the most captivating alpha men and her breezy, entertaining writing style. She’s an all or nothing kind of girl whose mission in life is to prove that women do it better. Her romance novels are loaded with passion, suspense and sarcasm, much like her life. Pick up the first books in her Twisted and Destiny Series for free—no strings attached!

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giveawayTwisted Swag Pack (Bookmark, keychain, magnet & more!)
1 e-copy of The Twisted Trilogy (3 books direct to kindle)
3 e-copies of Twisted Desire (direct to kindle)

Enter The Authors Amazing Giveaway – Click Here

Read on, 

Jordan

ARC Review: Clallam Bay by L.C. Morgan

Clallam Bay ePubAmazon/Goodreads

synFresh out of college, Hailey Wells left the hustle and bustle of Chicago to accept a first-year teaching job in the cloudy coastal town of Clallam Bay. Across the country and away from everyone she knew, she found herself building new friendships and quietly observing the actions of her next door neighbor, local charmer Collin Locke.

The two forged an unlikely friendship, but for Hailey, it became much more.

He wasn’t what she was expecting.

She wasn’t his type.

Or so she thought.

Too bad growing closer to Coll also meant questioning what she really wanted out of life. Would a few stolen moments and some weather-worn letters be enough to bind them together, or would the tides of uncertainty rip them apart?

All books in this series are standalone and have their own individual story. All are intended for adults 18 and over. Includes sexual content and sensitive adult situations.

review

***I received this eARC as a gift in exchange for an honest review via the author

Clallam Bay is an introspective, short, and sweet romance that is really about finding out what you want when faced with the possibility of true love. 

Hailey is just trying to figure out her life. She’s kind of awkward, shy, a little embarrassed, and never seems to know what she’s doing. Always second guessing herself, Hailey is searching for the woman she wants to become beneath all the expectations and things she thought she wanted. Hailey is relatable. She makes mistakes, she loves Doritos, she eats her feelings, she wants a love that will last, not some fleeting one night stand. 

The plot is slow, achingly slow. Nothing really happens. Throughout the book it’s a lackadaisical, lazy, and mundane pace. Honestly, there’s really nothing to break up the slowness. It kind of stutters along. 

The romance builds, oh so slowly, and sweetly, but with so many doubts that it’s hard to root for them. The few and far between moments when they are together are soft and playful, getting to know each other. 

Letters. Coll’s letters to Hailey are a little rough around the edges, just like him, and revealing. So much about himself and his dreams, he hides away. Letting Hailey in is a way of opening his heart like he never had never. 

Secondary characters were so-so. Amber and Alyssa are basically the same person, except Amber is a controlling, food hating mean girl. I got a lot offended by the brash way she knocks Hailey down and tries to cover it up with less than a band-aid of apology. Other characters had a strong presence, but there wasn’t enough of them. I needed more.

In some ways, the story feels nostalgic and like a memory. Like Hailey is looking back and summarizing everything that happened in retrospect. More imagery, more details, and more interaction to solidify the emotions being built would have helped to intensify the romance. 

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L. C. Morgan resides with her husband on the outskirts of a small town in the heart of it all. A lover of many things, she puts family first and Diet Coke second. When not working she can be found spoiling her new nephew with lots of love and kisses while awaiting her own little bundle of joy or at home, face shoved in her Kindle, fingers typing away to free the words from her head. She writes them for you and hopes you enjoy them as much as she enjoys yours.

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If you like any of the following, you’ll enjoy this:

Pleasant reading, 

Jordan

Cover Reveal: From Burning Ashes by Stacey Marie Brown

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This war is not being played on a battlefield.

Killed by the man she loves, not even death is kind to Zoey.
Neither life nor her fae powers will let her go in peace.

In this final installment, Zoey’s strength, determination, and trust are put to the ultimate test. In the fight to protect the people she loves and stop DMG from experimenting on fae, humans, and animals to create soldiers, she learns the reality of how far Dr. Rapava will go to achieve his ultimate mission.

Of course, Rapava is not the only one willing to go to extremes. Vadik is hunting Ryker, and there is nothing he won’t do to get back the property he feels is his: both Ryker and the Stone of Destiny.

To end one evil, Zoey might have to make a deal with another. One she won’t be able to get out of. And it could be the worst decision she ever made.

Haven’t started reading the Collector’s series yet? Start with City In Embers!

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Zoey Daniels has been tossed from foster home to foster home, where she grows up fast and tough. When she is placed in her “last-chance” home, she finds a reason to stay and turn her life around: her foster sister, Lexie, who is paralyzed and confined to a wheelchair. Zoey will do anything to keep her safe.

After high school, Zoey is hired by a special government agency, the Department of Molecular Genetics (DMG), where she meets the other reason to remain: Daniel, her co-worker. The man she loves.

But there is something unique about Zoey. She can see fae. Because of this, the DMG hires her to work as a Collector: catching, researching, testing, and using the fae to save human lives. The work never registers on her sympathy radar. She was raised to think of fae as beasts that feed on humans and want to destroy them.

When devastation hits Seattle, Zoey’s whole world is turned upside down. The electric storm connects her to a ruthless fae, a Wanderer named Ryker, whose dealings expose them to even more trouble and danger. They embark on a journey, running and hiding from both the government and fae, both of which threaten their lives and those they love.

authWebsite/Facebook /Twitter

Stacey Marie Brown is a lover of hot fictional bad boys and sarcastic heroines who kick butt. She also enjoys books, travel, TV shows, hiking, writing, design, and archery. Stacey swears she is part gypsy, being lucky enough to live and travel all over the world.

She grew up in Northern California, where she ran around on her family’s farm, raising animals, riding horses, playing flashlight tag, and turning hay bales into cool forts. She volunteers helping animals and is eco-friendly. She feels all animals, people, and environment should be treated kindly.

Happy reading, 

Jordan