Friday 24 May 2013

Blog Tour: Review & Giveaway: The Last Hour

Hey, everyone!  Today I'm part of the tour for The Last Hour.  Don't forget to stop by the other blogs; you can find the schedule here.

Title: The Last Hour (The Thompson Sisters)
Author: Charles Sheehan-Miles
Publisher: Cincinnatus Press
Released: 19th April 2013
Rating: 5 of 5 stars

I don't really know where I'm supposed to start with this review.  Five and a half hours after finishing it, and this book is impacting me even harder than when I read it.  I guess my brain needed time to process all the emotion and some of the things that go on in here, because it absolutely was not an easy ride.  Reading this was like being on a super fast, super intense rollercoaster: emotions running high and as much as you might want to, you can't get off.  There are loop-de-loops for when things turn upside down, and a couple of slower areas where you can sit back and relax, thinking everything's going to be fine, admiring the scenery - but then another loop-de-loop appears right in front of you and you're back to speeding along.  And then, when you know the rollercoaster is coming to an end, you don't come to a sweet, safe stop.  No.  You get flung off it altogether.

Carrie and Ray's lives have been hell for the past year and a half.  After meeting each other in Just Remember to Breathe, time saw them falling for each other hard and fast. Neither was expecting to find someone so perfect for them, and they couldn't have been more thrilled, each completely in love.  And for a time, everything is perfect.  And then it all falls apart.  Ray knows something from Afghanistan, and now that he's shared it, he doesn't get a moment's peace; the military and the FBI are on his back.  Carrie's entire career is at risk because of someone's false accusations.  With the investigation and press interfering in their daily lives, it's a struggle to make it through.  But then, just when they think things can't possibly get any worse, a car accident puts Ray and one of Carrie's younger sisters in hospital.  And it's this that's really going to change everything.

The Last Hour addresses so many issues, so many emotions.  And most important of all, it's a real representation of life.  There are going to be characters you despise, acts and images of brutality, events that you wish didn't happen because don't Carrie and Ray deserve to be happy, for goodness' sake?  Interwoven with those are the sweeter moments, of course, times when you can see how much they love each other, when they forget about everything else.  But life is not easy, not simple, it's not pretty - and Sheehan-Miles does not pretend otherwise.  This book is unapologetically real.  If life doesn't come with guarantees, with shortcuts and, sometimes, with fairytale endings...why should this story?  And, as always, Sheehan-Miles writes this beautifully, in a manner that makes everything even more real, maintaining the complexity that is found in both of the other Thompson Sisters standalones.  His writing is a treasure to read.

If this book is true to life, it makes sense that it would leave me heartbroken.  Before I started it, I had absolutely no idea that Carrie and Ray's journey would be so tough.  I know that after finishing Just Remember to Breathe, I'd been so looking forward to reading Carrie's story, because she's always been a fantastic sister, supportive, and acting like a mother to her younger sisters where their actual one failed.  I wanted to know her story. I wanted her to find her own happiness.  I'd loved Ray, too, and I wanted the same for him.  What amazed me most of all was how strong they both were.  I was completely overwhelmed by how their love for each other enabled them to be supportive and courageous even while their lives were crashing down around them.  And even after the accident, and Carrie's husband is lying in a hospital bed, she is still taking care of her sisters.  After doing it for so many years, it's what she's used to.  What she wants.  I felt relief and compassion when she started letting her sisters take care of her.  And Ray, before the accident, he didn't want her getting caught up with all his baggage and then with the implications of the investigation, so he was strong enough to give her the option to leave.  And when she stayed, he was always there for her.  These two were utterly selfless, utterly compassionate, completely deserving of the other.  Which made everything that much harder.

Clearly if you want fluff, Charles Sheehan-Miles is not the way to go.  But if you want to read something outstanding?  Something filled to the brim with emotions and questions and relationships and strength and identity? That's when you go looking for him.  This is definitely the hardest of the three books, and I can't say I'm entirely happy with the way things ended.  But I think that's a good thing.  This isn't the first book I've read with a difficult ending, and it doubtless won't be my last.  It's a challenge to meet, something to wrap my head around and accept and reflect on.  I think about this book and I think about all the issues that come with it.  About choices, and how they define you and what consequences they have.  I think about the characters' lives after all this has happened, and how they're going to move on, and, in some cases, hopefully grow.  It's a standalone, and the last of the Thompson Sisters books, so we'll  never really know.  But there's enough in the end to give you hope.  A small amount, but it's there nevertheless.  Life is one big juxtaposition, and Sheehan-Miles truly offers something extraordinary in his presentation of it.

I know this is a slightly longer review than usual.  I know the analogy I used probably isn't all that great, and some of this maybe doesn't make sense.  But what I also know is that I can't possibly write something that will fully do this book justice.  It really adds something to your life, and despite the pain that comes with reading it, I can say without hesitation that this was worth it.  Completely.  So for those of you looking for that outstanding read?  This book is one to remember.  More than that, this author is.  And I can't begin to express how grateful I am that he's written such books, and that I actually got to read them and have them be a part of my life.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday 21 May 2013

Astarte's Wrath: Bath Scene: Xarion's POV

Hey, guys!  So I'm actually putting something up here again after ages.  Again, I'm so sorry and again, thank you for being so understanding!

Anywho, on to the reason for this post.  I can't even tell you how excited I was when I opened up my inbox and saw an email from Trisha Wolfe.  Seriously.  And then to see that it was about the Bath Scene from Astarte's Wrath in Xarion's POV! This time, the whole. Completed. Scene.  Cue squealing.  And clapping.  And a reminder to breathe.

So I'm leaving the link for all you lucky people here.  Because I'm generous that way.  Be warned, the content is a little mature.  If you're comfortable with that, I wish you happy reading!  And happy reading to you all anyway. :)

Cover Reveal: Pinned Up

PINNED UP by C. Michelle
NA Contemporary Romance
Coming soon!
Readers in search of something fresh in the adult contemporary romance department will celebrate the arrival of C. Michelle’s vibrant debut novel, Pinned Up. Full of snappy dialogue, edgy humor, and a lot of heart, this fun look into the world of a modern-day pin-up model is one interesting journey. Are you ready to embark on a wild ride?
Twenty-five-year-old Nina Moretti lives a double life of sorts. She’s a victim advocate during the day and as a side gig, lives out her 1940s fetish as a pin-up model. This arrangement suits her well, as does never having a steady boyfriend. Trust is an issue that was ruined for Nina at a young age and has yet to be recovered. While she may not “do” serious relationships, she has found fulfillment in her work and hanging out with her best friend, Kade—the greatest sidekick any woman could possibly want. All is well in Nina’s hectic, but satisfying life…
That is, until she meets Josh, a stunningly handsome man who has a notorious reputation as a ladies’ man. Living in San Francisco, California, Nina has met her fair share of eligible bachelors. But there is something different about Josh, something that compels her to try and get to know him better. For his part, Josh has always been reluctant to commit to any woman, largely as a way to spite his well-meaning, but rather overbearing mother. Nina, however, sparks his interest in a way that no other woman has before. What are two people, both scared of commitment, supposed to do?
Readers will feel an array of emotions as Nina and Josh do the unthinkable—embark on a relationship together. As they navigate the pitfalls of romantic entanglement, both come to realize that their pasts are intertwined in ways that they could never imagine. Perhaps they have more in common than just their fear of relationships.

A heartfelt novel depicting modern love with a refreshing twist, Pinned Up is a must-read.

Reveal hosted by...

Wednesday 15 May 2013

Book Blast (Giveaway): Imdalind Series

Joclyn Despain has been marred by a brand on her skin. She doesn't know why the mark appeared on her neck, but she doesn't want anyone to see it, including her best friend Ryland, who knows everything else about her. The scar is the reason she hides herself behind baggy clothes, and won't let the idea of kissing Ryland enter her mind, no matter how much she wants to.

The scar is the reason she is being hunted.

If only she knew that she was.

If only she had known that the cursed stone her estranged father sent for her 16th birthday would trigger a change in her. Now, she is being stalked by a tall blonde man, and is miraculously throwing her high school bully ten feet in the air.

Joclyn attempts to find some answers and the courage to follow her heart. When Ryland finds her scar; only he knows what it means, and who will kill her because of it.

“Loved the world, the concept, all of the characters (good and bad), and just everything about this story! On to the next one!” -Jena, Shortie Says

“I loved this book from the very first lines… I think it will be hard to move on to another story for a while. -Steele Reviews

“It’s amazing and left me at the edge of my seat through the night as I read.” - Zach’s YA Reviews

On May 15th - 16th Kiss of Fire will be free on Amazon!

Can also be found on Barnes & Noble

Book 2 in the Imdalind series!

Joclyn is in hiding, hunted by the man she still desperately loves. Ryland is gone, his mind erased, no memory of Joclyn remains. But, Joclyn’s heart desperately begs her to hold out hope. While, in reality the black eyed monster that possesses him, attempts to kill her over and over.

If it wasn’t for Ilyan, Joclyn would be dead by now.

Ilyan. The man who once stalked her, is now Joclyn’s protector, the only thing she has left. He protects Joclyn from the men who seek to end her life, and while she is haunted by dreams where Ryland begs her to break the bond between them.

Ilyan is there. Always there.

Ilyan trains and prepares her, teaching her everything she needs to know in the hope that one day she can avenge Ryland, if not protect herself from him.

And then there is her father.

The man who has never been there, is suddenly responsible for everything. And who he is has made Joclyn into something she never wanted to be.

The Silnỳ.

"If you like magic and paranormal books you NEED to read this series." - Book Briefs

"Eyes of Ember was so amazing! I can't even put into words how amazing. It's Brilliant." - Imagine a World

Get your copy of Eyes of Ember for only $.99! 

Can also be found on Barnes & Noble

Rebecca Ethington is a story teller and author from Salt Lake City, Utah. She has been telling stories since she was small. First, with writing crude scripts, and then in stage with years of theatrical performances. Rebecca’s first stint into the world of literary writing, The Imdalind Series, was released in October 2012 and since its release each book has been found in several top 100 lists on Amazon. Rebecca is a mother to two, and wife to her best friend of 14 years. Her days are spent writing, running, and enjoying life with her crazy family.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday 10 May 2013

Blog Tour: Favourite Quotes & Giveaway: The Forgotten Ones

Title: The Forgotten Ones (The Danaan Trilogy #1)
Author: Laura Howard
Publisher: Self-published
Released: 30th April 2013

Allison O'Malley's plan is to go to grad school so she can get a good job and take care of her schizophrenic mother. She has carefully closed herself off from everything else, including a relationship with Ethan, who she's been in love with for as long as she can remember.

What is definitely not part of the plan is the return of her long-lost father, who claims he can bring Allison's mother back from the dark place her mind has gone. Allison doesn't trust her father, so why would she believe his stories about a long forgotten Irish people, the Tuatha de Danaan? But truths have a way of revealing themselves. Secrets will eventually surface. And Allison must learn to set aside her plan and work with her father if there is even a small chance it could restore her mother's sanity.

Favourite Quotes:
'"I want to take care of my mother.  It's all I want."  I curled my fingers into fists and pulled my shoulders back, looking back up at the stars.  I'd had this conversation countless times with Nicole over the years.
    "I know you do," he said softly.  I glanced back at him, surprised he wasn't telling me that what I wanted was ridiculous.  "But...who will take care of you?"'
'He brought his hands up and cradled the back of my head, so gentle.  His lips moved against mine - not taking, only asking.'
'As I blew out my candles, I wished the same thing I wished for every year - to be strong enough to take care of my mother.'
'"...That's what got me through the day, knowing you'd still be there when I got home.  No matter what happens, Mom, I will be with you."'
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday 9 May 2013

Blog Tour: Review, Excerpt & Giveaway: Of Silver and Beasts

Title: Of Silver and Beasts (Goddess Wars #1)
Author: Trisha Wolfe
Publisher: Self-published
Released: 19th April 2013
Rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

I am convinced that Trisha Wolfe is made of magic.  Magic mind, magic hands (for her ability to put on paper what is in her mind), magic that runs into her book and then reaches out to the reader to grab them and hold them in place, forcing them to continue reading. Why?  Because yet again she has created another fantastic world, another set of characters who don't give you the option of not loving them, and because...well, because she's Trisha Wolfe.

Welcome to Cavan, one of the Three Realms and a place where women are the protectors.  Kaliope is the new head of the Nactue, the Empress Iana's personal guard.  Sworn to a lifetime of duty and protection, she couldn't be happier, having trained for this since she was a young girl.  But when another of the Three Realms is attacked, it falls to Kal to guard Prince Caben, the last remaining heir to his kingdom.  As far as she's concerned, he's a spoiled prince who is keeping her from protecting the the Empress.  But things only get worse when the Otherworlders attack, and Kal and Caben find themselves kidnapped and taken below ground.  The rules are much different here; for survival, they will have to fight to the death in a caged arena, against others who have also been kidnapped from different realms.  Kal's urge to find her way out strengthens when she realises she needs to get back the relic that was stolen from the Empress, for the survival of both Iana and Cavan.  And then of course there's the matter of why the Otherworlders have been attacking.  And through all this she has to somehow keep both herself and the prince alive.

Wolfe truly excels at her worldbuilding.  Her worlds are complex, made up of different elements, and yet they all fit together to create an outstanding backdrop.  In this case we have a queendom, where women are highly respected and are the ones chosen to look after their families and generally take a slightly more leading role in society.  There is the mythological element, where it is custom to pray to the goddesses.  I love mythology, and when done well, they make a book incredibly intriguing; needless to say, it was done well here.  I really enjoyed reading about what each of the goddesses were responsible for, and of the divide between good and evil, and then how this was extended in the story.  The Otherworlders are the enemy race who live below ground, a concept both intriguing and perhaps slightly unfathomable when looking at it from a personal perspective.  I can't imagine living most of my life underground, away from the fresh air and the sun (although to be honest, it's not like the sun comes out here all that often anyway).  I really liked how they were presented overall as really aggressive, the enemy, but then you see this other side to them and realise that it's not all what it seems.  Finally, the idea of mercury being the most valued material, the thing that keeps everything running and that everyone depends on.  This world is one that has been thoroughly explored, and it is clear that the author has taken the time to really get to know it herself.

Kal then builds on this herself by being a really strong character.  She never shirks from her duty, and she will do what she thinks needs to be done; her loyalty, her strength, her sense of needing to protect others and always putting herself second, all these are emphasised through her relationships with her friends and mother.  It was really nice to see her grow throughout the book, allowing herself to confront old memories and letting someone in - someone who is not female.  Kal's past is an incredibly sad one, where her brutal father had no care for her mother and even less for her; when I found out what he did to her, I was shocked and horrified, not to mention angry.  It's easy to see how that affected her attitude towards men.  Caben himself I found to be quite different from the usual love interests, even aside from the fact that he is a prince. He, too, grows throughout the book, becoming more responsible and more aware, really becoming stronger in all senses of the word.  I loved the dynamics of their relationship and how that kept changing, and it was so heart-warming to see them accept each other despite their pasts and be there for each other. The secondary characters were well-written too, and their happiness and pain became my own.  Bax was a particular favourite; as soon as I started to see certain things, it didn't take long for me to warm to him.

Once again this author has astonished me with the world she has created, and I really just had to carry on even when I told myself I would stop reading at a certain point.  It's clear that Trisha Wolfe has explored each angle of this world, and because of that I felt like I was right there in Cavan and then underground, experiencing everything for myself; I had a clear understanding of how this world worked.  What pains me now is that we have to wait for the sequel.  I will have to come up with ways to get my Trisha Wolfe fix in the meantime.

    The cool sensation of the fresh water on my skin helps me forget my nerves and I lie back, floating just below the top of the water. My body dulls, the cold soothing my sore muscles, and I welcome the numbness. The ceiling of the cave is sprinkled with tiny clusters of white lights, dotting the canopy above our heads like stars in the sky. I feel as if I’m sitting on the rooftop of my apartment, staring at the night sky, not here in the Otherworld, awaiting my death.
    The water rolls, rocking my body, and I glance over as Caben floats up beside me. He’s on his back also, and points to the lights dusting the cave ceiling.
    “Diamonds,” he says.
    “Really?” I don’t know much about any minerals other than mercury. And somehow, diamonds as our stars makes my chest heavy. It’s too beautiful. “How can you tell?”
    “The ultraviolet light shows the impurities,” he says. “The imperfections actually absorb the dark light, causing the diamond to emit a visible glow.” He chuckles. “A very expensive lighting effect.”
    I laugh. “Quite expensive.” They twinkle as they reflect the rippling water. “But almost more heavenly than the stars.” I lower my voice at the end, hoping he didn’t hear my spoken thoughts.
    Caben doesn’t speak, and the trickling of the stream and lap of the pool becomes the only sound as we float in compatible silence. I could drift off, fall asleep in this peaceful place, but I know we still have a mission to complete before the Reckoning.
    This thought awakens me, and I touch my feet to the bottom of the pool and begin to wade toward the edge.
    I hear Caben’s heavy groan. “No you don’t,” he says, and captures the bottom of my tunic. He tugs me through the water, back to the pool’s center. “Not yet. This could be our last reprieve, and I plan for us to enjoy it.”
    As I turn to face him, his fingers slip from my shirt to my waist, grazing my stomach. My skin prickles, and I shiver, matching the trembling water around us. His deep blue eyes meet mine, and he swallows, his Adam’s apple working. Slowly, he begins to inch up my tunic—
    “Wait.” I place my hand on top of his.
    He cranes an eyebrow. “It should really have time to dry before we go back.”
    Logically, that makes sense. But the heated look he’s giving me says so much more. And regardless of the attraction I may feel for the prince—a woman would have to be blind—and whether or not we actually escape this hell ... what then? We share an intimate moment once, and go back to our stations in life, simply pretending nothing happened?
    Or maybe I’m reading too much into his gaze. He’s a man, and physical desire is self-serving. He may die ... and he probably wants to bed a woman one last time. Everything about his character screams he’s not one who thinks past the moment.
    I could lose myself for now, give in to the pulse quickening my blood with need, but I’ve never shown a man the clamp over my heart. It would have to be something I did for a different reason if I ever chose to do so. Not merely because I may die soon.
    As I push his hand away and start to swim off, he grasps my waist, encircling his firm arms around my stomach, and pulls my back to his chest.
    “Don’t run from me,” he breathes into my ear. “I’m not asking for anything. Not even whatever it is you’re hiding. Just stay here.” 

 Help Trisha and the Tuff Girl Legion get to 50 reviews on Amazon to read this full scene from Caben’s POV! Scene will release on Trisha’s blog. You can bookmark the bonus material here!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday 8 May 2013

Blog Tour: Review, Excerpt, Trailer & Giveaway: Chantress

Title: Chantress (Chantress #1)
Author: Amy Butler Greenfield
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Released:7th May 2013
Rating: 4 of 5 stars

Lucy has been told never to sing, for if she does, nothing good will come of it.  But when she hears a song on the wind, she cannot help but sing it herself, and this leads to her finding herself in London.  She stumbles upon members of the Invisible College, a group dedicated to overthrowing Scargrave, the Lord Protector whose power has all of London terrified.  The only one strong enough to defeat him is Lucy, who is thought to be the last Chantress - at least, the only one with her powers still intact.  It is not easy, however, as she has spent her whole life in the dark; she needs to learn and to train in order to fully understand her powers.  The question is if she can do this before time runs out.

The plot in Chantress is uncomplicated and, while not much appears to happen, at least not for a great deal of the book, I still thoroughly enjoyed the writing style and the ideas that Greenfield has created here.  The world in which this is set was well-thought out, and the backdrop of seventeenth century England fitted the story perfectly.  There is indeed something magical about just the thought of this setting, even without the fantasy elements - for me, anyway.  I was content to read at the pace Greenfield set, her writing too compelling for me to lose interest.  I was admittedly somewhat disappointed at the Shadowgrims.  They are meant to be creatures that evoke the deepest fear, yet they barely have a physical presence within the book.  All that I heard, and the little that we see of them, was not enough for me to find them at all disturbing.  Still, the concept was an intriguing one, and I very much commend Greenfield for the wonderful ideas that you come across in reading this novel.

Lucy was a likeable character, one I sympathised with when she discovered just how much about herself and her life had been witheld from her.  Despite one or two issues at the beginning, she does grow a lot throughout the book, and I really liked seeing her gain that confidence within herself and making choices that showed her to be strong of character.  Nat was a character particularly easy to appreciate, and it was nice to see his growth, too.   One magical, one scientific, both of them fit together brilliantly.  One of the things I truly enjoyed about their romance was how slow it was.  It has only a slight presence, and it takes a while just to start at all, but it was enough to complement the plot and was really very expertly written.  Not only that, but there was no drama that arises from a love triangle; this was a relationship about the two of them alone, and that made it all the more compelling to read about.

Aside from a couple of issues, this was a really enjoyable novel.  I loved the historical setting and getting to know all about Chantresses, with music as a real focal point.  It's clear that the author knows her characters and her world, and her writing alone is enough to make you want to continue reading.  I'm definitely looking forward to seeing a sequel.

    The wind howled at the cracks in the window, making the candle dance.  My mother's letter fluttered in my hand, and I thought I caught the whisper of a tune.
    This is it.  This is your chance to go home.  Be bold, and take it.
    I grasped the chain and pulled it over my head.
    The moment the stone was off, the songs came for me - hundreds of them, humming like bees, flickering like fireflight, crossing like shadows.  And the strongest one was the wild tune I'd heard in the garden.  This time, however, it went on and on.  It spoke of the sea and of home and of times long past.  It tugged at my heart and my throat and my lips.  Sing me, it said.
    And I did.
    I had no idea what the words were, or what phrase came next.  But I did not care.  A dizzying sense of freedom flooded over me.  All I wanted to do was give voice to the notes that came to me, one after another, in an endless stream of sound.  We climbed together, strong and sure, rising ever higher.  I felt as if I were flying.
    Sing and the darkness will find you.
    Norrie's warning rang out in my mind.  But it seemed to come from somewhere far away, somewhere very much farther than the music itself.
    I hardly even noticed when Norrie herself banged the door open.  With a horrified cry, she bounded forward and clutched my wrist, the net of seaweed dripping in her hand.
    "Lucy!  No!"
    But already the wind was rising.  It swirled through the room, midnight black, and caught us both in its grasp.  As the candle went out, the song rose to a shriek, and everything around us vanished.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday 6 May 2013

Blog Tour: Review & Giveaway: Echo

Title: Echo
Author: Alicia Wright Brewster
Publisher: Dragonfairy Press
Released: 25th April 2013
Rating: 3 of 5 stars
Purchase: Amazon UK | Amazon US | Barnes & Noble

The end of the world is in ten days, and Ashara, or Asha, is expecting to spend her last few days peacefully with her family.  But on the first day of the countdown, she finds out that she has to report to the Council for training - as an Ethereal.   Elemental powers run through family and as far as Asha knows, she doesn't have any.  But this is soon replaced by other news.  Mages are the ones responsible for the end of the world, all converging to one single area, and it's the job of every person with an elemental ability to hunt them down.  For Asha, the problem lies in the fact that she seems to be the root of all the trouble.

Echo was a simple enough read, with a straightforward plotline and a world easy to understand.  There's something appealing about the concept of a world where people can control the elements; in this case, there are six: earth, air, water, fire, metal and ether.  I quite liked the idea of a countdown that started right from the book's beginning, one that everyone in this world was aware of.  It made a change from those books where only a handful of people are able to prevent total destruction; this time, it's everyone possible coming together to work against the cause.  The idea of Mages, too, was a little different.  While there are books out there with Mages, I haven't read too many, and I liked how they were portrayed here.  This isn't a particularly heavy read and there aren't too many layers, which meant I was able to get through this fairly quickly.

Asha was, for the most part, easy to relate to.  Her confusion about what is happening comes across really clearly, and her personal relationships make her all the more likeable. Hers is not a family of rivalry or indifference.  Her mother, stepfather, sister, all of them are close to each other and to her and vice versa.  It's obvious, too, how much she misses her brother, who died when she was younger.  I also absolutely loved the relationship between her and Rey.  With all the talk of love triangles lately, I'm just going to put you out of your misery straight away and tell you there is not a love triangle here.  These two are just really close friends (and distant family relations), and I really appreciated that.  The romance was between Asha and Loken, who used to go out together, back before the time of impending doom.  I could appreciate the difficulties between them, but I did find their relationship somewhat hot/cold.  Having said that, I still ended up liking Loken and rooting for their relationship.  Asha herself I took some issue with, occasionally questioning her attitude and her choices.  In the end, though, she remained a generally likeable character.

Echo is a quick, simple read, with some genre twists you might perhaps not expect upon reading the synsopis. There was a nice blend of ideas here, coupled with characters not hard to relate to, and overall, it was quite enjoyable.

a Rafflecopter giveaway