Celine Reissued

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When Maegan Provan first published her vampire novel Celine, I gave it five stars. Now that she’s released a reworked second edition, I wish I could give it ten!

The basics are still the same, the title character is a girl who has been transformed into a “Night Touched”, a vampire created by the original vampire and then abandoned. With no one to guide her, she’s is quickly captured by Slayers, a group of humans who, in a world rife with paranormal creatures of all kinds, have dedicated themselves to protecting humanity – and that means killing vampires.

But instead of killing Celine, they see this as the perfect opportunity to study a Night Touched. Trapped, Celine reaches out in the only way she can – but psychically connecting with Harper.

When Harper was turned into a Night Touched, years ago, also abandoned. Since then, she has come to rely on her friends, as they move from town to town, always taking on personas, and leaving just before too many questions can be asked. But, despite their friendship, she feels alone. Perhaps that’s why the delicious human Silas catches her eyes, or maybe it’s because they’re fated to be together. Whatever the cause, she’s hooked, even though she knows she shouldn’t be, and then she starts getting visions of a young girl held prisoner – another Night Touched like herself. She knows she has to find her, but how can she, when Celine doesn’t even know where she’s being held?

As for what has changed, just… yes! Can I shout that? Now told through alternating points of view, we get to crawl inside not just Harper, but also celine, and the ever-tasty Silas. Flashbacks and other scenes give us a sense of why he’s doing what he’s doing, how he ended up where he is, and of course show us his confused, but irresistible attachment to Harper. Not just that, but the storyline is tighter, the word flow even better than before, still coupled with some great prose, and one heck of a big battle scene. I love, love, love this book, and I need to get it in paperback!

Get it on Amazon

 

Casting Call by Jonathan Harvey

Ha ha! I was doing some random google searches the other night and I ran into this old post by Jonathan Harvey that I wanted to share. Yeah, I am just going to steal it (images and all) and post it here because Jonathan is so cool he won’t care. You can see his original on his now abandoned MySpace though, and if you want to catch up with him he has a blog he occasionally posts in, a book he’s published called Shades of Plaid, and he writes the Terrible Turtle Conspiracy web comic.

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If you are looking for a book featuring Commando Cows of the Undead that fly around drinking blood from the udders of farm cows while dispatching bulls using submachine guns with extreme prejudice, then Shades of Gray by Joleene Naylor is definitely the wrong book. Shades of Gray is a delightfully gruesome paranormal romance that takes place during the dreaded war between vampire covens. The story’s heroine, Katelina, finds herself inexplicably caught up in a world of vampires. Not only does the poor woman have to grapple with the knowledge that vampires are real and that they want to kill her, but she also has to come to terms that the one who is sworn to protect her is a vampire himself.

Shades of Gray grabs the reader’s attention and keeps it throughout the course of the book. The story is well paced and well written. I was particularly fond of the villainy in the book. The characters were well developed. The book had a good balance of action and romance and the gore was at acceptable levels for a book of it type. I greatly enjoyed reading Shades of Gray and I am looking forward to reading the next book of the Amaranthine Series.

Now for the fun stuff! If they were to make a movie of Shades of Gray, who should be in it?

Jorick : The handsome vampire hero who protects Katelina! I’m thinking a dark haired Legolas, Orlando Bloom (Pirates of the Caribbean, The Lord of the Rings) should play Jorick.

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Katelina:  The main character of the story.  In the book the vamps are constantly putting her down for being plain.  This is a movie, so she should at least be pretty.  She should be pretty, but not overly sexy.  I chose Elisabeth Röhm (Heroes, Angel) she’s pretty not too young and she knows her way around science fiction.

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Oren is a friend of Jorick who loses most of his family during the Coven Wars.  He sticks with Jorick through the end.  He is the blond vampire.  For him I think we should cast Brad Pitt (Mr. & Mrs. Smith, An Interview with a Vampire).  He’s played a vampire before.  He was okay, I think he would make a decent Oren.

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Torina is Oren’s Sister.  She’s the sexy, red headed, femme fatale type.  I was thinking it would be cool to see Nikki Cox (Unhappily Ever After, Nikki) play this vamp.

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Jesslynn is the wife of Oren.  She is a proud dark haired and dangerous vampire coven queen.  I chose Angelina Jolie (Wanted, Tomb Raider) for this part.  She has the look and she works well with Brad Pitt.

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Kateesha is a treacherous and villainous vampire temptress whose alliances are questionable.  I  chose Aaliyah (Queen of the Damned, Romeo Must Die).  I know it’s type casting, but she was so darned awesome in Queen of the Damned.

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Patrick was Katelina’s old lover.  He’s killed off before the story ever really gets started.  Still, there are enough flashbacks of him that I thought why not cast him.  I’m thinking, why not James Marsters (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Smallville)

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Arowenia  is Claudius’s plaything.  She gets kidnapped.  She gets killed.  She is the catalyst to all this vampire unpleasantness.  Like Patrick she really has a small role.  So why not cast Leslie Bibb (Iron Man, Popular).  She’s young, pretty, and blonde.  What more do we need?

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 Claudius is the big bad of the book.  He’s the guy that has who is so upset about poor Arowenia being kidnapped that heads are going to roll.  Cast for this role is Gerard Butler (300, Law Abiding Citizen).  Because “This is Sparta!” just kidding.  It’s madness.

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Well there you have it.  Shades of Gray is all cast.  This might not make you want to read the book.  But heck, I think I’ll be first in line to see the movie.

 What do you think of Jonathan’s choices? Who would you pick to play the characters? And do you think I should take his advice and add undead cows (LOL!)?
 

Book Review: Air by Barbara G. Tarn

A good fantasy book should have six things.

1)      A diverse world with distinctly different cultures. Air has this. Silvery Earth has no only different magical races (each with their own customs and ideals(, but also distinct cultures of human occupants, as well. Like Tolkien and Middle Earth, Barbara Tarn has been working on Silvery Earth for many years through different stories and characters to create a world of great depth.

2)      A large cast of diverse characters. Air also has this. From the dark, brooding human Kumar, to the Sila Winged Jesminder, to the Naveen, the captain of the Guard and beyond, the story is told through a host of characters. This allows the reader to see all of the subtle pieces to the puzzle and watch as they fall into place to complete the full picture.

3)      Magic. Air has this in the form of the Magical races; winged Sila, Fajrulo who turn into dragons,  Waiora who live under the water, not to mention the Immortals themselves: Earth, Air, Water, Fire, and Ether.

4)      Something evil to fight against. There has to be a bad guy for the heroes to band together and defeat. The sect, a group of people who use blood and sex to gain power from the dark pond, fit the bill nicely. Though Ramesh, the high priest, is suitably twisted, I think it is Keiko who wins the prize for the most sadistic.

5)      Some romance. Whether it’s hinted at behind the scenes or out where you can see it, romance is a must. Air has several romance subplots, though to keep from spoiling surprises I won’t say who they are. I will say Kumar’s final decision was the most satisfying, though.

6)      Fighting. Wars. Death. Air has just enough of this to make the world believable, but not too much to make it seem gratuitous or overtly bloody.

This book has just the right mix of twisted, darkness and sweet light to make it a real page turner. I like that Barb didn’t pull punches when it came to the sect. They did despicable things and, though the actions are not detailed blow by blow, there’s enough that you know how atrocious their actions are.  I can imagine some women may take exception to the scene with Indira and Prince Anjan, but this is a fantasy novel, and fantasy societies are based on medieval societies. Social attitudes were very different then, and I was also glad to see that she stuck to that, too. I also have a deep, personal admiration for Ms. Tarn as I know English is not her first language. I can’t imagine the challenges of writing novels in another language!

In closing, did I enjoy this book? Yes! Do I recommend to to fantasy fans? Yes! Am I going to read the rest of Silvery Earth (including the short stories)? Yes!  And, I’m looking forward to it!

get yours :

smashwords: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/50628

amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Books-Immortals-Air-ebook/dp/B004UN4I1K/

paperback: http://www.lulu.com/product/paperback/books-of-the-immortals—air/16127364?

Emily Dahill CID Part One by Lindsay Downs

Before I get to the book itself I have to comment on this awesome cover. The cover artist for Astraea Press has a fantastic eye.

Okay, now that I’m done drooling, on to the review!

A collection of four stories, Emily Dahill CID, Part One, starts off heavy and ends with a big laugh. The first tale, Final Mission, recounts Emily’s near fatal copter crash in Iraq. She heals, but can’t seem to shake her new fear of helicopters. Even the sound of one flying overhead is enough to fill her with panic – until she meets her new partner. Dakota follows her into story two, A Body in the Snow, where he helps her to capture “the bad guy”. With a partner like that, bunny slippers are just fine for making the arrest.  In the third story, Right Place, Wrong Day, Dakota and Emily are both in for a little surprise when they agree to meet her friends for a camping trip, and the laughs continue in story four, Dog on Fishing where Dakota shows Emily and her friends the real way to fish. Told partially through Dakota’s eyes, it’s really a dog’s eye view!

Emily and Dakota have a special bond, and Lindsay shows this very well, not only with Emily’s thoughts, but also in their actions and reactions with and to one another. You get a sense of a very close and unique friendship that leaves both parties the richer for it. Her descriptions are rich, but not too wordy, so that you get a real feel for the scenes; from the sound of the bullets crashing around Emily and her team, to the cool lapping of the river.

If I had to pick a favorite line it would be“You know Special Agent Emily Dahill, I’ve been detained by all sorts of police, military and civilian, but I swear this is the first time by someone wearing bright pink, floppy eared, bunny slippers.”  That picture was just too much for me! Hee-hee!

Get your copy today from Astraea Press: http://www.astraeapress.com/#ecwid:category=662245&mode=product&product=5192868

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Emily-Dahill-CID-Part-ebook/dp/B005F5D2JG/

check out Lindsay’s website at: http://www.lindsaydowns.com/

Check it out….

Barb – aka author Barbara G. Tarn – was kind enough to read Legacy of Ghosts and leave a kind review 🙂 Be sure to check it out, and while you’re there check out her books! Her book is the next on my TBR list (If I ever finish this thing I am slogging through now… let’s just say I’m not going to bother leaving a review anywhere of the book I am currently reading.  And before anyone worries, it’s a traditionally published book by an author I had never heard of. I don’t think I’ll bother reading anymore of his, either.)

However, I have read some of Barb’s short stories and her graphic novels, so I happen to know she’s a good writer and I’m looking forward to hers! (Makes the current tedious read even more tedious!)

Book review: Legacy by LC Cooper

Genres: Adventure/Thriller/Mystery

Blurb: What happens to a restoration mechanic when he stumbles upon an insidious secret left hidden within the shadows of an evolutionary nightmare? “Legacy,” a fast-paced adventure novel is the tale of one man’s quest to realign the natural course of history. Events rooted in the final frantic days of World War II follow a carefully orchestrated plan that heralds in a new era for humanity.

My Review: It is World War II. A group of American pilots do a routine bombing on a train loading with German weapons, never knowing what it is they’re really bombing, or the Reich’s true plans.

Fast forward to the 1990’s. Collin Roggero works as a restoration mechanic, though his current task doesn’t interest him at all. As luck would have it, while looking through the warehouse he stumbles upon something that does; a group of world war II era crates. Inside he finds the parts to a German plane and something else. A mysterious cylinder and a bunch of random parts that he knows don;t belong to the airplane.

And that’s when the dreams begin.

Led to his fate by a mysterious “feeling” – call it destiny – Collin has to abandon his current life, and even his identity to unravel an age old mystery and stop a plot that’s been over fifty years in the making.

Legacy was a book that was full of twists and turns. LC Cooper does a good job of giving the reader the right information at the right time and maintains a good sense of suspense as well as a conveying a sense of urgency. You want Collin to succeed. You want him to be careful. You want him to watch out behind him…

I don’t want to spoil anything, but this book has one of the creepiest “monsters” (though I hesitate to use that word, as it doesn’t quite fit) that I’ve run into in a long time! It will definitely stick with me for a long time to come!

Links:

Songs of the Dead (Review)

Songs of the Dead by Dawn Colclasure

Dawn Colclasure’s dark poetry collection, Songs of the Dead, is not only dark, but passionate. Anger, fear, hurt and betrayal run under the skin of this work and shine through especially bright in poems such as No Turning Back, Deep Within and I am Madness. Colclasure examines the dark side of human nature; murder, drug use, violence, insanity and isolation. But, beyond the tales of death and darkness there’s also a message of empowerment; the voice of someone who has taken too much, for too long and has finally had enough.

Songs of the Dead is a re-release of the chapbook originally published in 2003 and, with more than twenty-seven new poems, it has more than earned the title “expanded”.  Colclasure has a flair for prose, with lines such as “walk on the moon and hear the stars breathe,” (from Death shows my Pain) and different poetry forms stop the reader from falling into a sing song rhythm of sameness and help to keep the collection fresh and interesting, page after page.

From poems of death and surrender, to fury and revenge, this is a poetry book to enjoy in the darkest of moods and one that anyone who’s ever “been there” will instantly empathize with.

Get your eBook copy today from Gypsy Shadow Publishing

  • Tales of the Executioners

    Short stories from the world of Amaranthine; a universe of blood and darkness where vampires don't sparkle and night is eternal. Each is about a member of the Executioners squad; the special vampire "police" force. Members both past and present share stories of assignments, origins, and more.

    Dark, light, love, laughter, death...you never know what you'll find in the shadows.

    Get your copy today!

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    Joleene Naylor's books on Goodreads
    Shades of Gray Shades of Gray (Amaranthine, #1)
    reviews: 13
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    Legacy of Ghosts Legacy of Ghosts (Amaranthine, #2)
    reviews: 9
    ratings: 27 (avg rating 4.37)

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    Joleene Naylor

    An independent author, freelance artist, and photographer for fun who loves anime, music, and writing. Check out my vampire series Amaranthine at http://JoleeneNaylor.com or drop me a line at Joleene@JoleeneNaylor.com

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