Posted in Books read

Mini Reviews – 2 Short Stories

Snow White’s Revenge

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Published – 12 July 2016

Review Notes:

  • A short story retelling of Snow White’s classic tale.
  • Here she is portrayed as a strong, independent lady, who wants revenge for her family and land, after the evil Queen takes over.
  • She is imprisoned at a young age by the Queen, then escapes and that’s where her adventure begins.
  • There is some character development, but because this story is short, the pace makes development hard.
  • You also see a bit of magic in this tale.
  • Romance is also a small part of this story and I had hoped to see something new here,  but the essence of the classic tale was prominent in the plot.
  • I’d love to see where Casey takes the tales in the future.

Keep an eye out for her other novels:

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Back by Sunrise

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Published – 20 November 2014

Review Notes:

  • A beautiful tale about family, friendship, love and loss.
  • There is some element of magic here, although you do not expect it at the start.
  • This enhances the plot, rather than distracting the reader, in an unexpected way.
  • Couldn’t put this book down.
  • Symbolism is a huge part of this story.
  • We get subtle hints of the lessons the main character needs to learn.
  • The ending to this exceptional tale gave me chills!

Keep an eye out for his other novels: (there are more)

Posted in Book Tags

The Get To Know Me Tag!!

I found this tag over at MyBookishDream and decided to do this tag myself.  I always want you guys to know me, and as I blog, you will probably learn even more about me.

 


About Me:

Name:  Chrissie
Nickname:  Blommetjie – My Dad calls me that.
Birthday:  1st of June
Star Sign:  Gemini – The Twins
Occupation:  I am a Customer Service Representative

Designed with a snug-fit full page of typography, this print highlights the positive traits that are commonly associated with each astrological sign. A unique medallion in the center features a starry:
Truly who I am…

Appearance:

Hair Color:  My natural hair color is a general brown, however, I recently wanted a change and colored my hair a dark reddish-brown color.
Hair Length:  I have long hair, just past my shoulders, and are growing it.
Eye Color:  A dark brown, but my emotions can sometimes lighten my eye color.
Best Feature:  My eyes, I love my eyes.
Braces:  I’ve never needed to get braces.
Piercings:  Two piercings in each ear.  The earrings I am currently wearing were gifts from my 16th birthday from my parents and my grandmother on my mom’s side.
Tattoos:  I do not have any tattoos currently, but want to get one on my ring finger on my right hand – the word ‘Family’ with a small heart next to it.
Right or Left: Right handed.

Music and Cross
Tattoo I want on my right shoulder…

My Favorites:

Movie:  My absolute favorite movies are the first and second The Mummy movies, however, the third one was not as good.  My recent favorite is Safe Haven.  Surprisingly, my favorite genre is horrors.
TV Show:  This one is extremely hard to answer because there is a fairly large list of loves here.  Once Upon A Time and Grimm is my current all time favorites.  I also enjoy the X-files and Roswell, Once Upon a Time, Hellcats, Gossip Girl, Teen Wolf, Criminal Minds, Haven…  There are so much more.
Color:  Blue, specifically baby blue.  Also green and purple.
Song:  I have never been able to choose one song, ever.  At this moment I’d say it would be Young and Beautiful by Lana Del Rey.
Restaurant:  It would depend on what I am in the mood for.  If I want pizza I’d go to Romans Pizza – thick crust, Regina.  If I want pasta I’d go to Parrots – they have an amazing dish – Penne Bertucci (a lovely pasta dish with chicken, broccoli, parmesan cheese and a white sauce).
Shop:  Any bookstore, obviously, and if there is a sale – I would trample over anyone who gets in my way.  I also like Music Moods, and Musica – for DVD’s and Series….
Books:  I have a whole bookcase full of books.  Right now the Starcrossed series is my all time favorite, by Josephine Angelini.
Shoes:  Boots, ankle, knee high, cowboy, flats, wedge style.  BOOTS!

There are like 105 episodes so you may want to start watching now before there are too many:
Just bought season 5!!  Eeeeppp!!!!

How am I doing currently:

Feeling:  Lazy, it’s quiet at work and I’m wishing I can just go home now…
Single or Taken:  Single – happily so, for now.
Eating:  Homemade mini pizzas with different toppings.
Thinking about:  Writing a book and taking part in the NaNoWriMo challenge in November.  I haven’t yet decided whether I will be able to make time to actually keep up with that much writing yet!
Watching:  Season 2 of Once Upon A Time – want seasons 3 – 5 now!!!
Wearing:  Bootleg jean, black tank, a tribal cardigan in black, white, and blue, and black wedges.

 

Get Inspired by Fashion: Casual Outfits | Tory Goes Tribal:
Dream Outfit!!

 

 

My Future:

Want children:  Yes, hopefully, one day I’ll meet my future husband and have two kids.  Boys preferably.
Want to be married:  Yes, and I’d want a relationship like my mom and dad has.
Careers in mind:  Freelance writing, blogging and writing novels (working hard towards this dream career.)
Where you want to live:  Scotland or Ireland.  Maybe somewhere in Canada.  Still looking at a few place, want to visit these places before I decide.

The Trinity Library, Dublin, Ireland. - Click image to find more Film, Music & Books Pinterest pins
The Trinity Library, Dublin, Ireland…  Yes, please!

Do you believe in:

God:  Yes
Miracles:  Yes, for sure!
Love at first sight:  Nope, I believe that the strongest relationships are built on a strong friendship.
Ghosts:  Yes
Aliens:  No, not at all.  But it’s an interesting theory.
Soul Mates:  Yes
Heaven:  Yes
Hell:  Yes – I am drawn to the Greek version, which is mythical, but so intriguing.
Kissing on the first date:  Depends on the date, but I’ve never kissed on the first date yet.
Yourself:  Definitely!

 

Jesus
Always!

There you have it, me in a big nutshell…  Anything more you wanna know?  Leave me a comment, k?

You can send this real card, in the real mail, right now from your computer or smartphone. When you visit the site, click the green box  Edit And Send Card, add your own words, add the recipient, click Send, and it will be printed and sent to them right away. Technology is awesome!:


I’d like to nominate:

TeacherOfYA
Jazz@SwooningOverFictionalMen
Melanie@MelToTheAny

Posted in Writing

Don’t Judge A Book By Its Movie – Prompt Challenge

This is not something I’ve seen yet, and I am so interested in seeing what I can come up with for this one.

The original post was done by Don’t Judge A Book By Its Movie 2016 Blog and I got nominated by Word Junkie 427.  Please check out both these blogs, they are so unique and fun to read and explore…

Basically, how this works is, the blogger chooses a prompt for the nominees (there needs to be three) and they need to write a story based on, and including, that prompt.  The original prompt was:

“A couple of teenagers are crouched down, hidden in the shadows of a grimy viaduct. Searchlights are sweeping the streets, searching for them. They are out beyond curfew. Write up happens next.”

So, my prompt is:  

“I sunk your battleship.”, I whispered into the night.

So, let’s start…


Mom has locked herself in her room again.  I shuffle to the table, sit down and watch as another strike falls just short of my ship.  “Nope, sorry.  You’re still missing.”, I smile.  I’ve never had such a winning streak, before tonight.  I look intently at my board, certain I know where to place this peg.  I look up triumphantly.

“I sunk your battleship.”, I whispered into the night.

After that, my mom found me and started yelling that this is no time to be playing with my imaginary friend.  But he wasn’t imaginary and he was so mad when she said that.  He yelled!  I covered my ears with my hands, trying to block out the awful sound.  She was flung clean across the room, hitting the far wall with a loud thud.  I closed my eyes.  I didn’t want to see what happened next.

She was screaming, my mom…

That is the last thing I remember of that night.

Afterward, I was woken up by a policeman.   There was blood on the far wall and a small hand print, that was all I saw before he covered my eyes and led me outside. They never could explain what had happened that night.  The hand print was not mine.  All they knew was that there was no way that I could have done all that…

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I want to find out what could have happened that night.  I studied criminology and paranormal activities, but nothing has been able to successfully explain that night.  I recently requested the old case file again and finally received the confirmation.

I walk up the stairs and into the dimly lit police office.  To the clerk at the front desk, I say:  “I’m here to see Detective Reece.”
“And your name is?”
“I’m Mary, Mary Whitemore.”
“Just a moment, please.”

“Miss Mary, you’ve grown up to become a beautiful young lady.  Give me a hug.”, Detective Reece has gotten gray and reminds me of a loving grandfather.  “Hallo, Detective.  How is it that, now, on the 15th anniversary of my mother’s death, that I get to see her file?  I have been asking for years now…” “I dunno kiddo, I was just as surprised as you were, when the confirmation came through.  Seems someone wants you to know, I guess.”

We head down the hall, catching up on general things.  We turn right into an interrogation room.  “Sorry bout this, this is the only open space we have.  You mind?”, he shrugs, knowing I wouldn’t mind in the slightest.  What I wanted was in the box on the table, waiting for me.  “No, thank you.”, I smile at him dismissively.  “I’ll leave you to it.”, with that he turns and stalks out, closing the door behind him.

Inhaling deeply, I lift the lid off the box.  A small cloud of dust floats up.  I peek inside and, taking another deep breath, I pull out the first thing.  In a small evidence bag is my mother’s favorite necklace – a tiny gold heart with a red crystal inside dangles on the chain.  Suddenly my knees give out, and I fall into the chair positioned behind me.  My breath hitches.  I thought this was lost.  I didn’t even know she was wearing it.  Why would she?  This belonged to my older sister, Lucy, who drowned when I was 4.

An instant pain flashes through my head, dislodging an old memory.  I must have just turned 4.  There is birthday candles, sixteen of them; Lucy is blowing them out.  I reach my hand towards the cake, but she slaps it and I start crying.  Mom yells at her, asking why she did that, but she just smiles and shrugs.

Then another, more painful, pain shears into my head, doubling me over with its intensity.  We’re at the lake, having a picnic on the bank.  Mom receives a call and gets up to answer it. Lucy wants the last cupcake, but I got it first.  She is mad, grabbing for it.  I scream and push her, and she pushes back harder.  I topple over and fall into the river.  Mom turns and sees me fall.  She saved me.

After she made sure I was okay, she sprinted to Lucy, grabbing her by the arm and dragging her into the lake.  She was pushing her head under the water. NO!  I ran to her, trying to get her away from Lucy, but I was too small to do anything.  She died.  Mom killed her!

I open my eyes, tears streaming down my face.  “Now you see why I had to do it?  She was drunk that night and she was going to hurt you.  Just like she hurt me…”,  I look up, startled.  She is sitting on the table, my imaginary friend.  “Lucy?”


I’d like to nominate:

Jill@RantAndRaveAboutBooks
Drew@TheTattooedBookGeek
Gretchen@ChicNerdReads

My prompt:

A little girl is terrified of the monster under her bed, but what she doesn’t know is that the monster under her bed protects her from the real monsters – her parents!

Start with:  “Mommy!  Help me…”

Posted in Books read

Broken Leaves of Autumn

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Book – Broken Leaves of Autumn

Author – Eli Hai

Publisher – Unknown

Genre – Contemporary Romance

Rating:

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Disclaimer: This book was sponsored by Ebookpro and gifted to me to provide an honest review. In no way does this affect my opinion or reviewing process.


First off, the cover is beautiful, a real autumn-inspired cover. This is what drew my attention to the book.

This was a somewhat slow read since I’ve yet again stepped outside my preferred genre for this one. This story focuses mostly on religion – specifically Ultra-Orthodox Jewish and Christian religion and what happens when these religions mix. There are strict rules to follow and a lot of things that can never happen.

The pace is quite slow with this story and there are a lot of plots to follow and keep track off (it’s not hard though).

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We mainly follow the story from the point of view of Jeff, who leaves his hometown to move to Brooklyn, in search of a better life for himself. He meets Ahron when he arrives in Brooklyn, who helps him get on his feet and invites him into his home and world. We also get a point of view later from Arhon’s life. And we see a different world through Rivka, Ahron’s youngest sister.

The book’s plots in respect to each character seemed, at first, very vague and somewhat disconnected but develop slowly.

The writing in this book is superb! The way scenes are put to words is almost poetic and creates this tangible image of the surroundings. It really sucks you in…

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We get a lot of insight to the Jewish religion and touch on the relation between religions. This was really well portrayed…

I would recommend this novel to people who want to learn about religion and want to immerse themselves in these surroundings. Overall, a slow, but well-developed read!

Posted in Cover Reveal

Amber Fang

Book – Amber Fang
Author – Arthur Slade
Series –Librarian. Assassin. Vampire. – Book 1

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Release Date – 20 October 2016

Synopsis:

Librarian.  Assassin.  Vampire.

Amber Fang enjoys life’s simple pleasures – a good book, a glass of wine and, of course, a great meal.

Raised to eat ethically, Amber dines only on delicious, cold-blooded killers.  But being sure they’re actually killers takes time… research… patience.

It’s a good thing Amber’s a librarian.  Her extraordinary skills help her hunt down her prey, seek out other vampires, and stay on the trail of her mother, missing now for two years.  One day she stalks a rather tasty-looking murderer and things get messy.  Very messy.  Amber, the hunter, becomes the hunted.

And then, from out of nowhere, the perfect job offer as an Assassin.  She’d be paid to eat the world’s worst butchers.  How ideal.

Until it isn’t.

Amber Fang is the first book in a new action and adventure vampire series by bestselling author Arthur Slade.  It’s a mindbending mix of full throttle action with a pinch of comedy and a dash of romance, reminiscent of James Patterson, Christopher Moore, and C.N. Crawford.

Posted in Cover Reveal

Spotlight Post

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Scorched Souls in Spotlight

Welcome to the exciting Spotlight Tour with Novel Publicity.  Today, I’m sharing the spotlight for Scorched Souls, the final story in the Chosen Trilogy by Jeff Altabef and Erynn Altabef.  Don’t forget to enter for your chance to win some great prizes, including an Amazon Gift Card, a Paperback of Scorched Souls and a dream catcher!

Participate in the Giveaway

Get your copy of Scorched Souls


Here’s an Exclusive Excerpt:

I lean back in my chair; he’s dumped a bucket of ice water on my head, and the chill settles into my bones.  “So the Chosen were set up to fail.  You’ve planted a bomb on the planet to explode when the Deltites take over.”
He nods, a smug self-congratulatory grin on his face.  “A Heart Stone to be precise.  It was the only logical action to take.”
Bile burns my throat.  “But billions of humans live on the planet…  They will all die.  They have souls”
Still, my father’s logic is undeniable.

“Another complication has developed.”  Two different human faces materialize above us and hover in front of the image of Earth.  “The woman’s name is Summer Stone.  She’s what humans call Native American, and is the mother to the Alpha among the Chosen.  The man is not from her tribe  He’s what they call Irish.”
“So? ”  Why does he care?
“The calculations behind the Chosen were extremely advanced and fragile.”  A third face joins that of the others.  “The Alpha’s name is Juliet Wildfire Stone.  She was supposed to be born from a union between two members of the same Native American tribe.  That genetic combination was the only way humans could produce a Chosen strong enough to be an Alpha and draw power from the other three.  The secret order had specific rules regarding this, yet they failed to heed them.  Fools!  I can’t predict what the outcome will be of this particular pairing.”
I study the faces and notice that Juliet has inherited much of her physical appearance from her mother: the long straight black hair, the caramel colored eyes, brown skin and high cheekbones – all but her sharp nose, which resembles her father’s.
Her eyes seem to sparkle, but I shake my  head.  These are only holographic images.  I can’t read too much into them or let my imagination cloud my reason.  “I don’t understand the problem.  Either she is powerful enough to be the Alpha, or she isn’t.  Since you want them to fail, why do you care?”

My father bores his gaze into me, and an icy blade carves into my chest and twists.
“There is a third possibility.”
My body turns weak.  I’m lucky I’m already sitting.  It’s unthinkable, but it’s the only thing that might frighten my father.  “You’re afraid she’s an… abomination.”
“I can’t rule it out.  Even if she is, she won’t be strong enough to defeat an Elite, but we can’t take any chances.  I want you to go to Earth.  Make sure the Chosen fail and never find out about our plans.  They can’t tell the Deltites about the Heart Stone I’ve planted on the planet.  If they retrieve that crystal, all would be lost, and they could use its power against me.”
“Me.”  I point to my chest.  “Why me?  Why not send someone else, someone who has already proven-”
“I trust no-one else with this!  You will succeed and return to Alpha, and when you return you will take the final test.  This way we have an excuse for your… reluctance to finish the final exam.”

Two small discs fly into his hand, and he hands one to me.  “This one is programmed with my brainwaves.  You will use it when you have succeeded.  I will keep the second here, so I can contact you… if need be.”
I sense the implied threat in his words and bow my head.  “Yes, father.  As you command.”
If pure evil exists in this universe, it’s sitting next to me, and I am this monster’s son.  What does that make me?
I glance at the hologram of Earth above me.  It’s a beautiful planet.
He’s sentenced billions of humans to die, but can I carry out the punishment?


About the Book:

Fate and destiny clash in the explosive, heart-pounding conclusion to the award-winning Chosen series.

Survival is not enough.
Alliances will be formed.
Loyalties tested.
A choice made.

My name is Juliet Wildfire Stone and I’m not just a Chosen, I’m the Alpha… and the fate of Earth rests in my hands.  When I finally met the Prime Elector, he wasn’t anything like I expected.  He was supposed to be our mortal enemy, a monster I needed to destroy to fulfill my destiny, yet he was nothing like that – he’s young, brilliant, and looks like an angel.  Caught in the middle of a conflict between two ancient foes, which threatens to rip Earth apart, I must do what is right at all costs.  To choose my fate, and Earth’s future, I will need to navigate a new path, form unlikely alliances, and solve ancient mysteries forgotten for centuries.  Yet I cannot do it alone.  Will the other Chosen follow me?  Do I have the strength to make the right choice, or will the people of Earth be enslaved for all time?

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About the Author:

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Jeff Altabef is an award-winning author who lives in New York with his wife, two daughters, and Charlie the dog.  He spends time volunteering at the writing center in the local community college.  After years of being accused of ‘telling stories’, he thought he would make it official.  He writes in both the thriller and young adult genres.  Jeff is very happy and proud that his co-author for the Chosen series is his teenaged daughter, Erynn Altabef.  Wind Catcher, the first in the Chosen Series, has won the 2015 Readers’ Favorite Gold Medal for Coming of Age Novels, the 2015 Beverly Hills Book Award for Best YA Fiction and a Mom’s Choice Award.

As an avid Knicks fan, Jeff is prone to long periods of melancholy during hoops season.  Jeff has a column on The Examiner focused on writing and a blog designed to encourage writing by those who like telling stories.

Connect with him on:

His website:  http://www.jeffaltabef.com
Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/Jeff-Altabef-Author-479282732198216/?fref=ts
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/JeffAltabef
Newsletter:  http://www.jeffaltabef.com/newsletter


erynn

Erynn Altabef is an avid reader, dancer, and community activist.  Some of her favorite authors are Veronica Roth, Joelle Charbonneau, and her dad!  (That would be Jeff Altabef.)  She just started her freshman year at Connecticut College, is proud to be a camel!!!

Connect with her on:

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/erynnaltabefauthor/

Posted in Musing Mondays

Musing Monday

Musing Mondays are hosted by Jenn@BooksAndABeat and every Monday she has the basic questions, you can choose which you’d like to answer.


I’m currently reading…

Broken Leaves of Autumn

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Synopsis:

An impossible love triangle on the backdrop of ultra-orthodox Brooklyn.

Jeff Palmer is a young Christian arriving in New York from a distant town in Arizona after a clash with his abusive father, with the aim of building a new life for himself.  In Brooklyn, he grows an unexpected friendship with Ahron, a young ultra-orthodox Jew that helps him find a job and invites his to his home.  Jeff meets Eva, a successful business woman, who works as a broker at the World Trade Center.  When Rebecca, Ahron’s sister, falls in love with Jeff, she throws her life, and his, into a swirl.

A touching and mind-opening novel that will catch your attention from the very first page.

Broken Leaves of Autumn is a fascinating and many-folded love affair that takes the reader from small-town Arizona to the Ultra-Orthodox Jewish community of Brooklyn NY, and from World Trade Center ‘ground zero’ to Israel.  It is a delicate and absorbing love story which will not leave you indifferent.

A sensitive and perfectly written story that holds an unexpected surprise.