Review: The Dead House – The Naida Tapes by Dawn Kurtagich

dead-house-naidaAmazon/Kobo/B&N/iBooks

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There is a box. A box that should never have been discovered. And a warning beneath the lid.

This was for Kaitlyn. It was a mistake. Forget this box and leave the Isle. Don’t look any further.
I’m begging you. N.C.D. 2005

After the inferno that swept through Elmbride High, claiming the lives of three teenagers and causing one student, Carly Johnson, to disappear, Naida Chounan-Dupre was locked away for the good of society.

But that wasn’t the end of the story.

Because you can’t play with the devil and not pay the price.

The chilling, psychological horror of The Dead House returns with never-before-seen footage of the Naida tapes.

review

4/5 Stars 

What I love about Dawn Kurtagich is her ability to make the uncanny ridiculously terrifying. The mind is a dark and twisted place, and as humans, we have an astounding capacity to become consumed by our thoughts. What Kurtagich excels at is making the reader question the characters, to doubt them, and to sift through the story and fight hard to uncover what’s real before it’s too late. Is it supernatural or are the characters just having a mental break? You decide.

Some scenes are graphic, grotesque and may be triggering for some readers. Kurtagich is never short on description and I eat that stuff up. If you’re one of those horror film lovers who gets ecstatic over Paranormal Activity, Insidious, or Sinister, pick this up. 

The story is lively. There’s absolutely never a dull moment. From the initial intro to the new characters and relearning the old. There’s mystery, terror, intrigue, and such darkness it will consume you. 

If you haven’t read The Dead House in a while, you might want to revisit the ending. I read hundreds of books a year so some mentions of characters really threw me and there wasn’t enough reiteration of the earlier book at the time they were mentioned to make me feel like I had a grip on the back story.

Naida’s dead house. Chills. Her fear, her anxiety, the overwhelming sense of dread that she’s going to let the word out. The way she mutilates herself. EVERYTHING is twisted, and dark, and made of a fantastic combination of desperation and hope. 

For the most part, the characters were well-developed and memorable. Scott felt wishy-washy as a love interest and didn’t have much personality. Apart from one sweet scene, it was a bit of a let down. 

The camera footage. You truly feel like you’re watching. Each bizarre, weird thing becomes doubly disturbing when Naida attempts to explain. Everything you think you know, maybe, just maybe, you know nothing. 🙂 

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

Suspenseful reading, 

Jordan

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Cover Reveal: Fail to Fight by Maci Dillon

banner_pktmdfailtofightcover5x8_bw_highiBooks/Kobo/B&N/Goodreads

Cover Designed by: RBA Designs

Release Date: November 22, 2016

synAn emotional story of unrequited love…

Chloe

Now, I ask you not to condemn the man I loved without knowing all the details. What he did was inexcusable and unforgettable, yes, but I wanted to forgive.

What I struggled with was why he left me scared and broken, without a fight.

With no goodbye, no closure.

And without closure, there was no moving on.

Will

Visions of her would haunt my dreams for all eternity. That night destroyed my world and changed my life forever.

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Maci Dillon is a self-confessed lover of chocolate, wine and mummy porn. A mother of three sporty children, Maci fits in writing between her family and full-time Marketing & PA business. Maci is a daydreamer who loves writing short, erotic scenes and loves reading M/M, ménage and sports romance. A true minx at heart, in her spare time you’ll often find her by the beach with a cocktail in hand.

Romantic reading, 

Jordan

Release Day Blitz: Someone I Used to Know by Tessa Marie

Someone I Used to Know30812413Amazon/Goodreads

synCharlotte was not looking forward to Spring Break. No technology and a boy she can’t stand. But when she realizes the boy is actually a hot guy now, and wants to hang out with her (!) she cant help but think this break may turn into something pretty awesome. But, is he harboring a secret that will challenge their budding relationship?

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Tessa Marie aka Theresa Paolo lives in the same town she grew up in on Long Island, NY with her long time boyfriend and their fish. Her debut novel (NEVER) AGAIN, a NA romance, released in Fall 2013 with Berkley (Penguin). (ONCE) AGAIN will release this summer. She is also the coauthor of the Amazon bestseller KING SIZED BEDS AND HAPPY TRAILS and BEACH SIDE BEDS AND SANDY PATHS, a YA contemporary series. She has a hard time accepting the fact she’s nearing thirty, and uses her characters to relive the best and worst years of her life. She put her love of writing on hold while she received her Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing from Dowling College. When she’s not writing, she’s behind a camera, reading, or can be found on Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook.

Romantic reading, 

Jordan

Trailer Reveal: Descent-Stacey Rourke

 
Genre: YA Fantasy
Hosted by: Lady Amber’s PR 
synIt’s been two years since the lion roared … the eagle flew … and the fated Celtic warrior embraced her destiny. Now, with an unknown darkness swirling and the body count rising, the world needs a hero more than ever. A new battle is brewing. Who will answer the call to war? The time has come. The stage is set. And the Garretts are back in a brand new novella. Descent; The Gryphon Series Resurrection, Coming in Spring 2016. It’s hard to keep a bad pirate down…  
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 auth
RONE Award Winner for Best YA Paranormal Work of 2012 for Embrace, a Gryphon Series Novel Young Adult and Teen Reader voted Author of the Year 2012 Turning Pages Magazine Winner for Best YA book of 2013 & Best Teen Book of 2013 
 
Stacey Rourke is the author of the award winning YA Gryphon Series, the chillingly suspenseful Legends Saga, and the romantic comedy Adapted for Film. She lives in Michigan with her husband, two beautiful daughters, and two giant dogs. She loves to travel, has an unhealthy shoe addiction, and considers herself blessed to make a career out of talking to the imaginary people that live in her head. 
Visit her at Website/Blog/Facebook or on Twitter or instagram at Rourkewrites.

Happy reading, 
Jordan



ARC Review: Chasing Forevermore-J.D. Rivera

Chasing Forevermore Front CoverRelease Date: October 26th, 2015

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Mackenzie…

After being dealt a hard life, things were finally looking up. I had a wonderful boyfriend and perfect daughter.

Life was great.

But at some point, your past always comes back to haunt you, crashing into you when you least expect it. And all you can do is weather the storm, even if it’s hell bent on destroying everything.

Hayes…

Perfect girlfriend, check.

Perfect daughter, check.

All that was missing was Mackenzie sharing my last name. But life is never that easy. And some choices you make can destroy everything. I just pray I didn’t fuck up beyond repair. Because I can’t live my life without her and I’d do anything to make it right again.

review3/5 Stars

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

READ THIS BOOK IF:

  • You’re looking for a short, sweet, and realistic romance 
  • You’ve read Chasing the Stars and you’re dying to know what happened to Mackenzie and Hayes

PROS:

  • The attraction between Hayes and Mackenzie is undeniable as ever. The easy-going, warm way they are with each other makes them feel like a happily ever after in the making. They’re playful and loving, they glow right off the pages.
  • Mackenzie’s fears are real and well founded. No matter how solid we feel  in a relationship, the moment doubt creeps in, we start second guessing everything. Mackenzie’s love for Hayes is enough for her to wish his absolute happiness above her own. 
  • The scene at the rock, under the stars. OMG, everything stood still, my heart stopped, I did not, could not believe. Shock, fear, sadness all collided with an overwhelming urge to shake Mackenzie.

CONS:

  • Some sections are extensive and other scenes fall short and feel clipped.
  • The ending is abrupt and cuts off, it feels rushed and a little too easily resolved.
  • The drama with Mackenzie’s family, particularly her estranged brother should have been an emotional whirlwind as Mackenzie struggled to process her feelings but like many of the other scenes, they were short and didn’t have the emotional build up or impact. Mackenzie doesn’t go through a grieving process and everything piles up. There are a few loose ends that leave the story feeling like it could have been taken a step further. 

ExcerptChapter One

Mackenzie
     My life was perfect. I had the perfect boyfriend, the perfect daughter—I can honestly say I’d never been this happy in my entire life.
     Rolling over, my heart leapt at the sight of my man. Hayes was sleeping peacefully, the sheet flung below his hips, showing off his impressive chest. He had always been hot, but since he came back into my life, he’d gotten hotter, if that were possible. His chest and six pack were very impressive, along with his biceps. But that wasn’t what made my heart leap. It was his new tattoo. A huge star between his pecs with “Harley” written inside. Mac, his nickname for me, was over his heart, but that tattoo had been there for a while.
     “Why don’t you stop checking me out and kiss me instead?” Hayes rasped, pulling me on top of him.
 
     I giggled and let my lips seal over his. He immediately deepened the kiss and I sighed. Not only was he great looking, he was also a great kisser, among other things.
     “Happy birthday eve,” he whispered against my lips before kissing me again.
     “Thanks,” I said, pulling back and looking at the clock on the nightstand. “I better get up and get dressed. Why did I sign up for a morning class?”
     “I don’t know, babe. Can I join—”
     “Dadddddyyyy!” Harley yelled from her room.
     “Never mind.” He sighed and we both got out of bed.
     I stood still for a minute, listening to him talk to Harley. Hayes was such a good father. He had been since the moment he laid eyes on her, and it still shocked me. He had always been a player and a big partier, but I guess that just goes to show, if you really love someone, you’ll change.
     I headed into the bathroom, brushed my teeth, and took a quick shower before digging out a long sleeve black t-shirt and ripped jeans. I placed my wet hair in a bun and didn’t even bother with makeup. I wasn’t trying to impress anyone.
     When I stepped into the kitchen, Hayes was feeding Harley and he had a bowl full of cereal waiting for me. “I didn’t know how long you’d be and didn’t want it to be gross, so I left out the milk.”
     “Thanks,” I said, grabbing the milk out of the fridge and adding it to the bowl. After placing it back in its spot, I walked to the table and sat down. I scooped up a big bite and chewed the sugary goodness. “So, what are your plans for the day?”
     He shrugged. “Same as always. Although, I was thinking about going over to Carson’s and hanging out before I pick Harley up from the sitter.”
     I smiled and shoveled more cereal into my mouth. I’d never actually asked, mainly because I’m scared of his answer, but I’d been worried Hayes only sticks around because it’s the right thing to do. He’d been hanging out with Carson a lot over the last month, and I had overheard Hayes and Carson talking about old parties. Once I heard Carson refer to them as the “good ole days”, I felt that maybe Hayes’ “change” was only because he felt obligated.
     I mean, hell, he had replaced me quite easily. When we had reconnected, he had been dating a girl who looked similar to me for several months. Hayes had claimed he dated her because she was as close to me as he could get, but maybe he’d be better off with her. Young and carefree, not strapped down with a child. Stop it. He loves you. He loves Harley. Of course, I knew that, but insecurities died hard.
     “Babe, are you okay?” Hayes asked, snapping me out of my thoughts.
     I cleared my throat. “Yeah. I’m good,” I said, glancing at him. “I was just thinking about class.”
     “You sure that’s all you were thinking about?”
     I took one last bite of my cereal and stood before heading to the sink. “I’m sure.” I rinsed the bowl and placed it in the dishwasher. “We still leaving tomorrow morning for your parents’ house?” Tomorrow would be my birthday, the day before Thanksgiving. Hayes had planned a big celebration for me.
     “Of course.”
     “Since you want to hang out with Carson, I’ll pick Harley up from the sitter after my last class.”
     “Babe, I’ll pick her up. I have one class today and I’m only going to stop by his place for an hour or so.”
     “Okay,” I replied, then kissed Harley before walking into the living room to grab my bag. “I’ll see you tonight.” I knew it wasn’t fair, he deserved to hang out with his friends, but I couldn’t help the tightness in my chest.
     “Are you not going to tell me goodbye?” Hayes asked, spinning me around. “I won’t push you to tell me what’s wrong, but you better at least give me a kiss.”
     I smiled weakly, then placed a kiss on his lips. “Sorry,” I whispered. “I’m not sure what’s wrong with me.”
     Hayes smashed his lips against mine, giving me a hard, lingering kiss before pulling back. “I love you.”
     “I love you, too,” I said before opening the door and leaving.
 
***
     Heading to the union after leaving my second class of the day, my cell began ringing.
     I smiled at Miranda’s name on the screen. “Hey.”
     “Hey, isn’t today when you have that big gap between your second and third class?”
     “Yeah,” I replied, weaving in and out of people walking along the sidewalk.
     “Brad and I were wondering if you’d like to come have lunch with us. He’s picking me up in front of the union.”
     “Yes. I was on my way there anyway. I’ll see you in a minute.”
     “Great. I’ll be waiting.”
     We disconnected and I couldn’t help the sudden pep in my step. Maybe having lunch with my two best friends was exactly what I needed.
     I picked up my pace, walking as fast as I could until I reached the front of the building. Miranda’s long blonde hair waved in the wind, making her easy to spot.
     “Hey, you,” I said, coming to stand beside her and placing my arm around her.
     “I have missed you,” she replied, wrapping her arms around me. Miranda was my very best friend, aside from her boyfriend and my adoptive brother, Brad. And, of course, Hayes.
     “You just saw me like three days ago.”
     “I know, but I still missed you.” She looked down the street. “Brad should be here any minute.”
     “Okay.”
     I took a deep breath and tried to relax. I had no idea what had me all messed up inside, but I needed to get it under control. I knew Hayes loved me, and I knew he loved Harley. Maybe it was our impending trip back to Maverick and knowing I’d be there for more than a couple days. Running into my parents was a high possibility…if they still lived there. I was sure Hayes’ parents knew, but I never asked. I didn’t really want to know.
     “Here he comes,” Miranda said, stepping closer to the street.
     I glanced up and saw Brad’s big black truck pulling up in front of us. I walked closer and opened the back door, pulling myself up and in. “Hi,” I said. “I hope you don’t mind me crashing your lunch date.”
     Brad gave Miranda a peck on the lips before turning to face me. “Mackenzie, you know you are always welcome.”
     I smiled. “Thanks.” Brad could always make me feel better with just a simple sentence. He was my confidant, and basically, my and Harley’s savior. I had a deep love for him.
     “Where do you two pretty ladies want to go?”
     “Anywhere,” I replied as Miranda said, “Pasta House. I want lasagna.”
     I shrugged. “Fine with me.” Brad nodded and pulled away, but not before catching my eye in the rearview mirror. He knew something was wrong.
     “How was class, beautiful?” he asked Miranda, and I checked out. They hadn’t been dating long, but I knew they were it for each other. They were both blissfully happy, and neither of them felt beholden to the other.
     I was so gone in my thoughts, I didn’t even realize we had parked until Brad opened my door with a raised brow. “You coming?”
     Shaking my head to clear my thoughts, I said, “Sorry. I’m just spacey today.”
     “You will tell me what’s wrong. You know that, right?”
     I nodded. “I know. But I promise I’m okay.” I looked around, noticing we were alone. “Where is Miranda?”
     “She had to pee so she raced inside. Tell me what’s wrong.”
     I sighed. “Sometimes I just wonder if Hayes sticks around because he feels like he has to.”
     Brad’s eyebrows bunched. “What the hell, Mackenzie? That boy loves you.”
     “I know he does. I do. But I feel like I’m making him give everything up. He doesn’t get to have fun anymore.”
     “I can promise you he is perfectly happy. You need to stop worrying.”
     I looked to the ground. “It’s just—”
     “Don’t you dare even go there.” He took my chin in his hand, forcing me to look at him. “You are good enough for him. You and Harley are all he wants.”
     I nodded. “I don’t know what’s wrong with me. I just feel like I’m holding him back…with everything.” I shrugged. “Thank you for being here. I don’t know what I’d do without you.” I wrapped my arms around him and closed my eyes as he hugged me back.
     “I’m always going to be here, kiddo.” He released me, flashing a smile. “Now let’s go eat. I’m starving.”
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.
If you like any of the following, you’ll enjoy this:
7e4f1-labeled2blove2bcoverPageflex Persona [document: PRS0000038_00066]Everything_Pearl_high copy01c9f-everybody27safterlove_ebook
 

 

 

 

Jordan

 

Release Day Blitz: The Space Before & The Space Beyond-Melissa Pearl

 
“Sometimes to find your way…you have to get completely lost.”

Dale Finnigan is a teenage rebel; he lives for parties, girls and joy riding in stolen cars. In spite of his uptight parents’ constant warnings and lectures, he continues to run wild. His crazy lifestyle is the only way he can live and feel free…until his reckless behavior takes him down a path where there is no going back. In this prequel to The Space Between Heartbeats, find out who Dale Finnigan was before he became known as “Scarface”—the unassuming hero everyone underestimates.

WARNING: This book is intended for mature teen readers due to coarse language and mature content.

(Sequel to The Space Between Heartbeats)
Amazon
syn“There’s more than one way to say, I love you.”

Have you ever been so in love with someone, but not had the courage to tell them?

Nicole Tepper is that girl. She loves her boyfriend Dale, but fearing rejection, keeps her feelings buried deep. She can’t even let on how heartbroken she is when Dale begins applying for colleges thousands of miles away from her; never even whispering a word about how much she wishes he would stay close.

But, when Dale is rejected from Colombia University in NYC, due to a police record that follows him wherever he goes, Nicole soon discovers that love can drive her to do things she never thought possible.

There’s more than one way to say, I love you and Nicole is about to prove to Dale that she loves him beyond all common sense.
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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 is coming out 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 planned for 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.”

Happy reading,
Jordan

Review & Contest: Bitterroot Part 1-Heather Hildenbrand & SM Reine

bitterroot_part1_smallAmazon/B&N/Goodreads/iBooks

synSeventeen year-old Regan Vuk has lived her whole life under the shadow of her future: the pack alpha. She is fast, smart, and determined. According to her own pack members, she is a shoo-in. But Regan’s dad has a secret.

Seventeen year-old Charlie spent her adolescence drifting from place to place with a mother desperate to hide her illegitimate daughter from the unforgiving reality of werewolf pack dynamics. All Charlie has ever wanted is to know her father–and the family that’s been kept from her all these years. But most of all, she wants a place to belong in the world. Where she doesn’t have to pretend she can’t sprout fur and paws at will. Being kidnapped on her way home from prom was not she Charlie had in mind.

When Charlie finds out the only way to fit in with her new family is to defeat her long-lost sister for the role of alpha, she refuses. That is until she learns that the strange and alluring vampire she’s befriended, Owen, is the same vampire prince that’s been promised the winner.

Regan has no doubt that, although she loathes the vampires, it will be her who “wins” Owen.

Only problem: Charlie’s already fallen for him.

Bitterroot is a Young Adult Paranormal with a dose of sibling rivalry… Who will you root for?

teaserBitterroot Part 1 teaser 6

review2.5/5 Stars

***I recieved this eARC as a gift in exchange for an honest review via the authors

READ THIS BOOK IF:

  • You’re looking for something quick and entertaining (this is just over 100 pages)
  • You’re a sucker for the classic vampires vs werewolves conflict 
  • You watch The Vampire Diaries, Bitten, or Twilight

PROS:

  • Secondary characters were full of personality and quirks, so much so that it outshone the main characters. I found myself leaning towards characters like Brent, Bevin, Carter and even the vicious Sheridan.
  • The vampire in the woods is intense. That scene was a total adrenaline rush made of terror and attraction. It was PERFECT. He’s deep, talks about serious things, thinks things through before he speaks, and that sort of broody, flirty charm is there to sweep you off your feet. He’s not merely looks, it’s his sincerity, his willingness to listen that makes him attractive. 
  • Just short enough to leave you hungry for more and long enough to suck you in.

CONS:

  • The plot was predictable and lacked any twists or surprises. What should have been a big reveal was easily called from the beginning of the story or if you read the synopsis (I didn’t beforehand). 
  • Regan and Charlie were hard to root for and even harder to get to know despite being told from each of their POVs. So much focus is placed on the situation that the tiny details that make their personalities were missing. Their preferences, how they feel about basic things like clothes or music, anything like that was strangely absent. It’s like they had no life before this moment in time and nothing to attach them to the world. Charlie and Regan are crazy oblivious to what is right in front of them. It’s all sorts of frustrating.

Contest! Help spread the word about Bitterroot!

Share the following message on Twitter, FB, or IG OR follow me (Heather Hildenbrand) on any of these platforms and get entered to win a signed swag pack including a paperback of Seasons of the Moon by SM Reine & Dirty Blood by ME! Contest ends 9/26!*

2 sisters. 1 vampires prince. Can family survive forbidden love? #Bitterroot for .99. http://bit.ly/Bitterroot1

*Contest not affiliated with FB, IG, Twitter, or any other outside entity. Must be 13 years or older. Void where prohibited.

Keep reading, 

Jordan