Release Week Blitz + Giveaway | Memories of Ash (The Sunbolt Chronicles #2) by Intisar Khanani

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Hello readers! Welcome to the Release Week Blitz for

Memories of Ash (The Sunbolt Chronicles #2)
by Intisar Khanani

Fantasy lovers, this one’s for you! Love magic, look no further!
And you definitely need to check out the awesome giveaway found below.

Happy Book Birthday, Intisar!

Let’s celebrate everyone!!

 

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In the year since she cast her sunbolt, Hitomi has recovered only a handful of memories. But the truths of the past have a tendency to come calling, and an isolated mountain fastness can offer only so much shelter. When the High Council of Mages summons Brigit Stormwind to stand trial for treason, Hitomi knows her mentor won’t return—not with Arch Mage Blackflame behind the charges.

Armed only with her magic and her wits, Hitomi vows to free her mentor from unjust imprisonment. She must traverse spell-cursed lands and barren deserts, facing powerful ancient enchantments and navigating bitter enmities, as she races to reach the High Council. There, she reunites with old friends, planning a rescue equal parts magic and trickery.

If she succeeds, Hitomi will be hunted the rest of her life. If she fails, she’ll face the ultimate punishment: enslavement to the High Council, her magic slowly drained until she dies.

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Title: Memories of Ash
Series: The Sunbolt Chronicles, Book Two
Author: Intisar Khanani
Cover Designer: Jenny Zemanek
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Release Date: May 30, 2016
Publisher: Purple Monkey Press

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Apple | Kobo

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excerpt

I start forward, my eyes on the bundle ahead of us. I cannot quite make out what it is. Something sticks out from the bulk of it, reaching across the floor like an errant branch, dried twigs.

Filled with foreboding, I draw closer, straining to make out the thing in the light of the glowstone. The mage slows beside me. My throat closes up. I stare, frozen mid-step, at the shape stretched out before me: a body that is nothing more than papery skin curled over the brittle bones within. A mummified corpse, preserved by the endless heat, untouched by nature, its clothing long since dissolved away. Its bones protrude obscenely: each rib tracing a line around its chest, the pelvic and hip bones encased so tightly in skin that the gaps, the natural spaces formed by the bone, seem translucent, as if the light were shining through thin parchment.

My stomach tightens into a ball. I swallow hard, forcing down the bile in my throat. The skull bears no expression, dull teeth showing through leathery lips, the eyes long since shriveled away. But that hand, outstretched… A plea. Or a single, hopeless attempt to escape death.

Beside me, the mage breathes a curse.

 

 

OTHER BOOKS IN THE SERIES:

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The winding streets and narrow alleys of Karolene hide many secrets, and Hitomi is one of them. Orphaned at a young age, Hitomi has learned to hide her magical aptitude and who her parents really were. Most of all, she must conceal her role in the Shadow League, an underground movement working to undermine the powerful and corrupt Arch Mage Wilhelm Blackflame.

When the League gets word that Blackflame intends to detain—and execute—a leading political family, Hitomi volunteers to help the family escape. But there are more secrets at play than Hitomi’s, and much worse fates than execution. When Hitomi finds herself captured along with her charges, it will take everything she can summon to escape with her life.

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About-the-Author2

Intisar Khanani

Intisar Khanani grew up a nomad and world traveler. Born in Wisconsin, she has lived in five different states as well as in Jeddah on the coast of the Red Sea. She first remembers seeing snow on a wintry street in Zurich, Switzerland, and vaguely recollects having breakfast with the orangutans at the Singapore Zoo when she was five. She currently resides in Cincinnati, Ohio, with her husband and two young daughters.

Until recently, Intisar wrote grants and developed projects to address community health with the Cincinnati Health Department, which was as close as she could get to saving the world. Now she focuses her time on her two passions: raising her family and writing fantasy. Intisar’s current projects include a companion trilogy to Thorn, following the heroine introduced in her free short story The Bone Knife, and The Sunbolt Chronicles, an epic series following a street thief with a propensity to play hero when people need saving, and her nemesis, a dark mage intent on taking over the Eleven Kingdoms.

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Release Week Blitz: Review + Excerpt | Charged by Jay Crownover

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From New York Times bestselling author Jay Crownover comes CHARGED, the latest in her sexy The Saints of Denver Series, releasing May 24th! Known for her strong heroines and alpha males, you won’t know what hit you as you read Avett and Quaid’s story. Keep reading for more about the Leagle Eagle and Avett and order your copy today.

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From the New York Times bestselling author of the Marked Men books comes the second installment in the Saints of Denver series featuring a bad girl and a by the book attorney who could be her salvation…or her ruin.

Avett Walker and Quaid Jackson’s worlds have no reason to collide. Ever. Quaid is a high powered criminal attorney as slick as he is handsome. Avett is a pink-haired troublemaker with a bad attitude and a history of picking the wrong men.

When Avett lands in a sea of hot water because of one terrible mistake, the only person who can get her out of it is the insanely sexy lawyer. The last thing on earth she wants to do is rely on the no-nonsense attorney who thinks of her as nothing more than a nuisance. He literally has her fate in his hands. Yet there is something about him that makes her want to convince him to loosen his tie and have a little fun…with her.

Quaid never takes on clients like the impulsive young woman with a Technicolor dye job. She could stand to learn a hard lesson or two, but something about her guileless hazel eyes intrigues him. Still, he’s determined to keep their relationship strictly business. But doing so is becoming more impossible with each day he spends with her.

As they work side-by-side, they’ll have to figure out a way to get along and keep their hands off each other—because the chemistry between them is beyond charged.

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 REVIEW

My rating: 4 stars

Charged follows Avett Walker and Quaid Jackson. After the incident at the bar Avett finds herself in legal trouble, thanks to Asa she finds herself with lawyer, Quaid. From his first meeting with Avett, Quaid knows this case isn’t going to be a usual for him – there’s something about her honesty that intrigues him and makes him act differently.

In the Marked Men series I was not really fond of Avett, I mean I really did not like her, but after reading this my opinion about her completely changed – she is a cinnamon roll that needs to be protected at all cost. I just wanted to hold her and tell her everything will be alright and it’s not her fault; I’m glad Quaid was there to do that. She was so broken she didn’t realise the amazing support she had around her – she was drowned in her mistakes that she felt she didn’t deserve the support she received. Her emotional growth was a pleasure to read.

Quaid was absolutely drool-some, ahhh Legal Eagle *_*. He was dealing with his own demons but he overcame them and that was fantastic. There wasn’t much of a character growth, it was more like him breaking down his wall and becoming himself. He was pretty amazing to begin with and when he shed his walls I knew I was a goner.

The chemistry between Avett and Quaid was explosive, and while the romance was steamy and swoon-worthy, the story was much more than that. It was about not letting your past define you, but how you move forward from it. The story had me on the edge of my seat till the very end.

I loved the appearance of old character and some new ones. There were hints for future stories and I, for one, cannot wait. I’m not sure whose story I want more first, I kind of want both right now. I shall patiently wait for the next one.

EXCERPT

Quaid

              She let her arms fall and scooted forward on the chair. She leaned forward and looked at me intently. Her eyes were mesmerizing and I found myself distracted by all the different colors trapped there. I had to ask her to repeat herself when I realized she said something and was waiting for a response from me. I needed to get my head in the game where this girl was concerned…this girl…that was the part I seemed to keep forgetting.

              “What did you say?” My voice dipped lower than it normally was and I shifted in my seat as other parts of me started to notice all the interesting and attractive things about Avett Walker as well.

              “I said, I Googled you.” She swept some of her hair back from where it had fallen over her shoulder, and I literally had to force myself to keep my gaze locked on her face as the motion pushed her chest up higher and tighter against the plain, black T-shirt she had on.

              “Oh, yeah? How did that work out for you?” I knew what she would find: my service record, my wedding announcement, my work history from the firm, various tidbits on my most high profile cases, and various articles chronicling my divorce. Most divorces weren’t newsworthy, but when one of the people involved came from money and the other was as high profile as I was, it made for good filer on a slow news day. I was curious to see what her interpretation of the snapshot of my life that existed on the internet was.

              She got up from the chair and started to pace back and forth in front of my desk as she talked. “It worked out well enough, I guess. I saw that you were enlisted when you were younger, which explains why my dad immediately liked you.” She looked at me over her shoulder and a tiny grin tugged at her mouth. “He doesn’t usually like anyone instantly. It takes him a while to warm up.”

              I listened with half an ear as I watched her brightly colored hair swish around her shoulders. She didn’t come across as the girly or overly feminine type, so I wondered why she had gone with such a delicate and pretty pink when coloring her hair.

              “I learned that you’re a Colorado native, that you grew up in the mountains, that your birthday is right around Christmas, which means you’re almost thirty-two, so you’ve accomplished a lot in your career in a short amount of time. I also learned that you own a lot of suits.”

              I snorted out a surprised laugh at that last part, which made her stop pacing. She took a step closer to my desk and put her hands on the opposite edge, leaning forward. The new position made her T-shirt gape at the collar, and even though I refused to look down, I could see the hint of a leopard-print bra peeking out. That hint of something forbidden made my mouth go dry and had my pulse kicking. It was a powerful reaction to very little provocation, and I made myself beat it back, forcibly.

And don’t miss the first titles in The Saints of Denver Series!

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Jay Crownover - author picAbout Jay Crownover:

Jay Crownover is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Marked Men, The Point,and the Saints of Denverseries. Like her characters, she is a big fan of tattoos. She loves music and wishes she could be a rock star, but since she has no aptitude for singing or instrument playing, she’ll settle for writing stories with interesting characters that make the reader feel something. She lives in Colorado with her three dogs.

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Release Week Blitz | The Secrets We Keep by Trisha Leaver


About THE SECRETS WE KEEP

Title: THE SECRETS WE KEEP
Author: Trisha Leaver
Paperback release date: April 26, 2016
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR) | Square Fish
Pages: 304
Formats: Paperback 978-1250073624) | Hardcover (978-0374300463) | Audio (978-1501212222) | eBook (ASIN: B00OFKKFFQ)
Genre: YA Contemporary
Ages: 12 and up

Description:

Twin sisters. A fatal accident. A devastating lie. Which girl survived?

“A girl takes over her twin sister’s identity in this emotionally charged page-turner about the complicated bond between sisters.”

Ella and Maddy Lawton are identical twins. Ella has spent her high school years living in popular Maddy’s shadows, but she has never been envious of Maddy. In fact, she’s chosen the quiet, safe confines of her sketchbook over the constant battle for attention that has defined Maddy’s world.

When–after a heated argument–Maddy and Ella get into a tragic accident that leaves Maddy dead, Ella wakes up in the hospital surrounded by loved ones who believe she is Maddy. Feeling responsible for Maddy’s death and everyone’s grief, Ella makes a split-second decision to pretend to be Maddy. And everyone believes her. Caught in a web of lies, Ella is faced with two options–confess her deception and risk devastating those who loved Maddy, or give up her own dreams and live her sister’s life.

Find it: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes | IndieBound | Goodreads


Praise

*”Leaver’s brilliant novel is the high school version of What Happened to Janie? The compelling premise will attract readers and the strong characterization will keep them enthralled.” -VOYA, STARRED REVIEW

*“Leaver’s story is certainly entertaining and intriguing. VERDICT This should be a primary purchase for any library with patrons who love melodramatic mysteries and romance.” SLJ, STARRED AUDIO REVIEW

“Trisha Leaver crafts a powerful and haunting novel that will keep you up long after you read the last page. Full of twists and turns and FEELS, this book questions how far a person will go for her family . . . even if it means losing herself.” – Lynne Matson, author of NIL


The Excerpt

I don’t remember her room being so cold. Even snuggled into her sweater the chill seeps in, settling into my bones like a whisper from beyond. That’s where I will sleep tonight…in Maddy’s bed, surround by her scent. Mom wants to change the sheets, but I won’t let her. The hint of vanilla mingled with Alex’s dark cologne brings a little piece of my sister back to me each night.

The only thing I have left of my old life is a few sketches and a poor replica of the friendship bracelet Josh gave me. It took me days to re-create, to weave the strings into the right pattern. It’s not perfect, but it goes with me everywhere, a tiny reminder of who I once was and what Josh still means to me. The real bracelet is gone, cut off and tossed aside just like my life.

I want to make peace with my choice, but Maddy’s secret haunts me. The dark pieces of her life are hid- den in the back of her closet for no one but me to see. She’s not who I thought she was, but that doesn’t matter. Maddy was my sister, my twin sister, and I’ll do anything for her, including losing myself.


The Teasers

There was a fear behind his words, a fear that I would change my mind and reveal a secret I didn’t even know.”

“I am already gone. I died that night on the side of the road with my sister.”


About Trisha Leaver

Trisha Leaver lives on Cape Cod with her husband, three children, and one rather disobedient black lab. She is a chronic daydreamer who prefers the cozy confines of her own imagination to the mundane routine of everyday life. She writes Young Adult Contemporary Fiction, Historical Fiction, Psychological Horror and Science Fiction and is published with FSG/ Macmillan, Flux/Llewellyn and Merit Press. Her YA Contemporary, THE SECRETS WE KEEP, was named one of the best YA novels for summer (2015) by Teen Vogue and received starred reviews from VOYA Magazine and School Library Journal (audio). For more details, check out her website at http://www.trishaleaver.com

Find her: Website | Twitter | Tumblr | Facebook | Instagram | Goodreads


The Giveaway

There is a blitz-wide giveaway, courtesy of the author, for:

  • ONE (1) winner will receive a $25 Amazon Gift Card
***Giveaway is open to anyone 13 or older who can accept an Amazon Gift Card***

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Review + Spotlight + Giveaway: Cuff Me by Lauren Layne

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Cuff Me
by Lauren Layne
New York’s Finest Series
Publication Date:
March 29, 2016
Genre: Romance

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Vincent Moretti is one of the NYPD’s top homicide detectives-and one of the most eligible bachelors in town. His family, however, thinks he should date his longtime partner, Jill-a sassy, sexy, smart-mouthed blonde who drives him absolutely crazy.

Behind the quiet authority, tough-guy demeanor, and dark aviator glasses lies a man with a big soul-and a hard body that can soften any girl’s heart. After years as his coworker, Jill Henley has given up hope that anything could happen between her and Vin. Besides, loving him would break all the rules. But seeing Jill with someone else triggers feelings in Vincent he never knew he had. Now he’ll have to stop playing good cop/bad cop-and find a way to convince her to be his partner for life. . .

Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks | Google Play

My Review

Vincent Moretti and Jill Henly are NYPD’s top homicide detectives. When Jill’s mother gets sick, Jill takes a three month leave to aid her mother. During their time away Vin realises the importance of Jill in his life. On the day she gets back she drops a bomb…she’s getting married.

Lauren Layne never ceases to turn me into a pile of goo. Cuff Me is a story with the ‘will they, won’t they’ vibe. The Moretti’s have been rooting for Vin and Jill for as long as they have known Jill, and they appear to know more about the situation than Vin and Jill themselves.

Vin being an introvert has not had a lot of luck in socialising which has thus made him believe he is incapable of love that is not familial. Jill despite wearing her heart on her sleeve refuses to acknowledge her true feelings for Vin.

For Vin, Jill is his everything, it’s how he thinks of her and when he finds out she’s engaged, to be married, his whole world comes crashing down. Jill, despite not labelling her feelings for Vin, is tired of waiting and when she gets an opportunity at love and companionship she takes it.

Things start looking down for Vin and Jill after she comes back engaged. They’ve been in sync with one another for years and their first case after Jill’s leave isn’t too hot. Jill and Vin both rely on each other implicitly, but their unable to connect with the case as they have previously.

I am a sucker for subtle romance and this is an epitome of subtly. Like when Vin bought Jill and maple bar doughnut on her welcome home party. Or when he tried setting up a romantic dinner. It’s the little things they did for each other and how in tune they are with each other that had me swooning.

This was much more than a friends to lovers romance. They’re each other’s everything long before they give them a chance romantically.

I also enjoyed being introduced to Marco. I really hope he and Elena get their own books. I’m not ready to say goodbye to the Moretti’s.

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Excerpt

One never really realized how much New York City got under your skin until you left it for a while.

It was like one minute New York was your adopted home—a little bit intense, a lot scary.

And the next, you were holding your breath as your plane landed, your entire body on edge with the anticipation of being home again.

Jill Henley smiled as the plane touched down, her eyes closing just for a moment at the realization that she’d be sleeping in her own bed tonight. Going back to her job tomorrow. Eating at her favorite gyros place tomorrow.

But none of that—not the city, nor her pillow-top bed, nor the really freaking amazing gyros—were as important as who awaited her.

The Morettis.

Jill loved her mother desperately—it was the reason she’d spent the past three months in Florida taking care of her.

But the Moretti family had become every bit as much family to Jill as her own mom.

She couldn’t wait to see them again.

All of them.

Okay, so maybe there was one Moretti in particular whom she was especially excited to see.

Not that the excitement was mutual.

As she walked through JFK toward baggage claim, she couldn’t figure out for the life of her why she was even the tiniest bit disappointed about the fact that Vincent Moretti wouldn’t be the one picking her up from the airport.

She hadn’t even asked him. He might have said yes. Maybe. But it would have been done with a grunt and a grumble, and probably a lecture about how his workload was double because his partner had “up and ditched him.”

Besides, it made more sense for Elena to pick her up anyway.

Not only was Elena her best friend, but Elena was an attorney at a fancy-pants law firm, with access to a company car that was a hell of a lot nicer than Vin’s car and didn’t smell like old coffee.

Plus, Jill had news.

Big news.

The biggest.

The kind of news that female friends squealed over in the appropriate, gushing manner.

So why was she so nervous?

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About Lauren Layne

A long-time romance reader, Lauren Layne thinks the only thing better than reading about happy endings is writing them. She now pursues a full-time career in Happily Ever After, a job she’s naturally suited for after marrying her high school sweetheart. A bit of a nomad, Lauren’s lived everywhere from Orange County to Manhattan. Her hobbies include coffee by day, wine by night, and lots of writing in between. She’s also a total website nerd and insists you check out LaurenLayne.com!

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