Monday, July 24, 2017

Long live the...MONARCHY by Laura Pritchard

Hi there!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.
 
Today, we're putting front and center book one in a NEW Young Adult trilogy that you don't want to miss.  How can I say that so confidently?  Well, for starters, I've read it and let's just say that's it's REALLY GOOD.  For middles, I'm gonna say that the comparisons I'm about to make initially will have you salivating for more.  For finishing, I'll share my experience and let you decide from there.  Sound fair?  Good.  Now, let's get to today's ebook of choice...
 
 
 
Monarchy
The Monarchy Trilogy, Book 1
by
 
About the book...
In the times after the reformation, the leaders of the new world have created the perfect society. There is no exaggerated wealth or famishing poverty. There is no starvation or crime or disease. The citizens of the sectors are secure and well nourished, forever protected by the life the Monarchy have so gracefully afforded.
 
No one mentions the things that are lacking. Constance thinks about it often.
 
At the age of sixteen, Constance is snatched from her family in a twisted ceremony called 'Removal.' Forced to reside in the Citadel, the fortress of the Monarchy, she faces a brutal induction to evolve into a soldier of the Brigade; sworn peace keepers of the sectors. While she grapples with the feeling of revolution that rage in her mind, Constance is trained by Calloway, the guard with an elusive past who shadows her every move.
 
Remaining peaceful, however, is the last thing on the minds of the inhabitants of sector six. Uprisings and rebellions are common place with her own kinsfolk being injured and killed as a consequence. When the time comes, Constance must decide which side she will choose in a battle that will determine her future. It is a choice that she should never have to face; weighing her own life against the lives of those that she loves.
 
 
 
AMAZON  US  |  UK
 
 
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So, obviously I read the book, or rather ebook, or this post would be a moot point from the start...but seriously, I am OH SO GLAD THAT I DID and I think you will be too.  As promised, I shall begin with the comparisons...

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At face value, we've definitely got a combination of The Hunger Games and Divergent going on here...and no, those were my exact thoughts as I was reading prior to having seen any other reviews that may or may not draw the same comparison.  Why mention these big names?  Because there are so many similar elements...name likeness, society structuring, job assignments, uttered-every-so-often-catch-phrases, etc...but like any good writer, or book for that matter, it matures into its own story where yes, things were borrowed, but not stolen, making it something worth clamoring for.  Oh and boy will you be clamoring for it!  Now, on to that reading adventure insight I mentioned...

Right from the start, Constance's story pulls you in as we get to know her, her family, and what life is like in the every day within her sector.  We learn that the Monarchy is there to provide for the people, taking away decisions, struggles, and choices.  No longer is there a high or low class...all are equal.  But are they REALLY?  I mean, there are always going to be those that feel they can lord over you or others, taking what they want, and leaving the rest like dust in the wind...it just seems that now they are the ones solely in control.  Well, just as there are those that will always seek power, there are those who seek to overthrow it, and their numbers are starting to grow.  It matters not that a few were captured and publicly executed...that just gives their fight more of a cause.  But what happens when those you love become one of the enemy and allegiances switch sides?  It's not so black and white anymore and in a revolution, there's no room for those in gray.

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I seriously LOVED this story!  It takes the world we live in, turns it on its ear, and reveals just what too much power can look like even if it was started with good intent.  It's not so far removed from a possible future to be unbelievable and yet you can't help but hope it would never come to pass.  I mean, no division of classes sounds fabulous but not at the cost of relinquishing our power of choice to those that feel better suited to wield it.  I really felt Constance's character was authentic.  Her reactions to things felt true, heavily laden with guilt when things went amiss, yet brightened by each small success.  The time spent in induction was heartbreaking.  The horrors they went through, themselves and for each other, beyond reason or sanity.  Frankly, I was surprised that any retention of their same selves was even possible let alone accomplished.  I was SO worried when the little dictator (Lex) pulled that last little stunt and Constance took a downward spiral...it didn't seem possible for her to recover and yet the fact that she even tried showed her inner strength.  Does she remain her same self?  Perhaps...but there will always be a part of her that locked itself away that day. 

As we begin to wind down as I am getting a tad long winded (Sorry!), I have to mention, the negatives...of which I really only had two.  First up, the potential romance (one sided as it may be) scene between Constance and Theo.  Yeah...not buying it, and the abruptness with which it unfolds didn't really flow with the rest of the writing.  Second, I had a tiny issue with something at the end.  Call it a personal preference but to me, Constance's lack of understanding in regards to what was unfolding even though she wasn't a part of the plan, felt a smidge off for her character.  She's a bright girl and catches on pretty easily to most that she's confronted with, some might say even MORE than most, but this one thing just skipped all thought, all comprehension.  Perhaps she was just thrown by the whole situation, who am I to judge...I'm truly not, just noting.

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 In the end, it was well worth the read and then some.  True, it may have had a grammatical or formatting glitch here or there, and perhaps I didn't agree with EVERY minute detail (all noted already), but all in all, I WAS HOOKED!  Really, really, REALLY can't believe we have to wait until next year for the sequel....especially with that ending.  OMG!  I need to know what happens to...and what about...and how is Calloway going to...and what about Theo...and we can't forget Daisy...but...but...

Recommended for Young Adult Dystopian fans, teen age and above due to some violent content.
 
 

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About the author...

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Laura Pritchard was born and raised in a small town in the South Wales Valleys in the United Kingdom. She is a teacher by day and an author by night! She currently teaches music to children who have been expelled from mainstream school.

"I have written for as long as I can remember! I have distinct memories of filling notebooks with stories from a very young age. The passion for writing came from a love of reading!"

"I came up with the initial story for my novel, Monarchy, about 2 years ago and have put all of my time and effort into perfecting it since then. Being a mum to 2 young children and a secondary school Music teacher alongside means I have become a professional life juggler and I try to fit as much writing time as I can! I am currently penning the follow up to my first novel, Anarchy, to be released in 2018."


SITE


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Special thanks to author Laure Pritchard for the ebook for review.  (THANKS!)  For more information on this title, the trilogy, or the author, feel free to click through the links provided above.  This title is available now wherever ebooks are sold!  Be on the lookout for book two, Anarchy, set to release 2018, and the concluding title in 2019!  (Really...that long of a wait?!  Eek!)

Until next time...

...may you always be graced with their approval...

...I mean, remember...if it looks good, READ IT!
 
 
 
 
 
 


Sunday, July 23, 2017

BLOG TOUR: Thomas Troll's Travels by Nicolas Starling

Hi there!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.

Today, we're playing host to a stop along the Authoright Marketing & Publicity blog tour for a Children's Fiction release filled with fantasy, fun, and far off places.  It stars a little guy by the name of Thomas who just so happens to be a TROLL.  I know, I know...we're use to hearing about them under bridges, but hey, this is Norway, or at least that's where we start off, and considering it's their homeland, I'm pretty sure connecting structures aren't their only hang outs.  Ready or not, here comes today's ebook of choice...


by
Nicolas Starling
Clink Street Publishing

About the book...
Thomas the Troll comes from Norway. Like most Trolls he is mischievous, naughty and full of adventure.

One day, he has to leave Norway because the troll elders are going to punish him for being so cheeky.  Thomas decides to live in England and has had all kinds of adventures on the way there.  He meets elves, gnomes and brings Ticklefish with him; Ticklefish are great fun and nearly as naughty as Trolls.  Thomas meets pirates a friendly ghost and even thinks he's sees the queen!

Some people think Trolls are a fairy tale. I don't. Do you?




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Thomas the Troll isn't content to just let life pass him by.  No siree, he prefers more sneaky endeavors that seem to get him in A LOT of hot water.  The last one though...stealing all the Troll toffee (not just a sweet tooth satisfier, either)...takes the cake, or rather toffee.  In one felt swoop he goes from prankster and trouble maker to the outcast of the village...basically the "most wanted" number one slot, if he were a human.  Good thing he doesn't mind relocating because that's really his only option.  Good thing he's open to meeting new people and creatures because he's about to.  Good thing he makes friends just as fast as enemies because he's gonna need all the help he can get.  Pillaging pirates, slumbering Trolls and Gnomes, even a Tinkerbell-esque elf that probably would be upset that I just referred to him as a girl fairy, even if his penchant for turning into a winged critter was more often than not, there's a wide cast of characters introduced along the way that leave their mark indelibly on Thomas and friends, passing on messages and morals along the way.

Now, for the tough part.  While it certainly had its moments and fair share of surprises, for me, the magic never really seemed to stick, and the traveling was a bit over the top. Though aiming for the kiddo audience, some of the content and writing begs for a slightly older age group, yet the tale doesn't seem to steer us that direction in concept or plot. I will say Thomas was a sweet troll underneath his mischievous exterior, and what he did for Tracy or even Ronnie, was commendable... I just can't say I was in love.  Who knows...perhaps YOU will be!  All it takes is just the right audience and TADA...instant magic.




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About the author...


Living in Scarborough, North Yorkshire, retired Butcher Nicolas Starling has always enjoyed entertaining people both young and old with his vivid imagination.

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Special thanks to Rachel at Authoright Marketing and Publicity for the ebook for review as well as the chance to bring this tour to you.  (THANKS!)  For more information on this title, feel free to click through the links provided above, or seek the out the other stops on the tour going on RIGHT NOW!

Until next time, remember... if it looks good, READ IT!







Thursday, July 20, 2017

Black or White?: Colorblind by Leah Harper Bowron

HI there!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.

Today, we're stepping back in time to the year 1968.  What's the significance?  Aside from the war waging on the other side of the world, lives were being torn apart on our very soil after two highly publicized assassinations.  WARNING...what you are about to read will be hard at times, but it's a part of history, something to be learned from, not forgotten.  Ready or not, fair readers, let's turn our attention to today's book of choice...




by
Leah Harper Brown
9781943006083
Sparkpress


About the book...
The time is 1968. The place is Montgomery, Alabama. The story is one of resilience in the face of discrimination and bullying. Using the racially charged word "Negro," two Caucasian boys repeatedly bully Miss Annie Loomis--the first African-American teacher at the all-white Wyatt Elementary School. At the same time, using the hateful word “harelip,” the boys repeatedly bully Miss Loomis’s eleven-year-old Caucasian student, Lisa Parker, who was born with cleft palate and cleft lip. Who will best the bullies? Only Lisa’s mood ring knows for sure.



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Short and decidedly not sweet due to the subject matter covered, but oh so telling of an age not so far in our past to be considered ancient history.  

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Lisa is your average eleven year-old, just trying to figure out life and get through the daily struggle that it currently is.  What struggles could a little girl have?  More than you might think, considering the times she lives in and especially when we take into account her own secret, which is decidedly bigger than whom she simply has a crush on.  Grant it, her hidden truth shouldn't matter, after all, it's more an omission than a secret, and it doesn't define her, but let's face it...people can be cruel and sadly, she is surrounded by them both at home and school.  

Now, Mr. Parker (her father) is a good man, always teaching Lisa by his side not by his hand, and it's obvious she gets her sense of truth and justice from him.  Her mother?  Not so much...in fact, if I had her within ear's reach, she'd get a piece of my mind!  Then we have Miss Annie Loomis, a breath of fresh air in these stagnant parts, no matter how much she wishes to be anywhere but where she is.  The struggles they will face, the ignorance they will have to combat, the similarities of their tails even before they were acquainted, will astound, while the lessons to be learned reverberate long after the final page turn. 

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Overall, the author does a wonderful job of reminding us that while, yes, everyone can be a victim of bullying for whatever reason, it's up to ALL OF US to stop it in its tracks, whether we're one of many or a voice of one.  WORD TO THE WISE...the book is written the way that is is (antagonistic, and straight forward) to reflect the times, the thinking, and small mindedness, but boy can it be hard to read! It had me seeing daggers and my heart clenching at the ignorance, while wanting to whisk Lisa and friends away from it all.  ...and that's before I even knew that the author was writing from her own experiences to some degree!  I know I'll be remembering the brave deeds of little Lisa for many moons to come, and hoping against hope that other readers will be touched similarly.



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About the author...


Leah Harper Bowron is a lawyer and James Joyce scholar. Her article “Coming of Age in Alabama: Ex parte Devine Abolishes the Tender Years Presumption” was published in the Alabama Law Review. She recently lectured on Joyce’s novel Ulysses at the University of London and the Universite de Reims. She lives in Texas and has a daughter named Sarah and a cat named Jamie.




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Special thanks to Paxton at PR by the Book for the ARC for review.  (THANKS!)  For more information on this title, the author, or those promotions on the horizon, feel free to click through the links provided above.  This title just celebrated its book birthday July 11, 2017 via Sparkpress, so be on the lookout for it on bookstore shelf or virtual retailer of your choosing.

Until next time, remember...if it looks good, READ IT!

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

The Crowns of Croswald by D.E. Night

Hi there!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.
 
Today, we're diving into the Glanagerie bottle (more on that in a moment) after the first book in what is posed to be an EPIC new series!  It's a work of Middle Grade Fantasy that will have readers making comparisons to a particular wizardry story, but for all the RIGHT reasons.  Don't believe me?  Ah yes, I figured you may need more than simply a nudge in the right direction...though count your lucky stars, it could be hundreds of quills flying at you and poking you in the rear end!  *ahem*  Anyway, let's get down to business because today's post starts out as magic filled as the story itself.
 
 
 
What you're looking at is a box.
SURPRISE!
Okay, just kidding, but only just.
THIS box is what arrived on my doorstep so many odd days ago.  If you look carefully there, it has book spines on the side with rather peculiar titles that spark the imagination from the word go.  Well, of course I couldn't wait to see what was inside, so a few tape slices later and...
 
 
We're in...but into what is the real question.
I mean, the "specially created for" bit was lovely and mysterious, especially if you noticed who exactly the box was FROM (take another look...go ahead)...and what's with this newspaper inclusion...
 
 
Why, it looks like a discarded copy of Scriven This, the go to guide for news in the scrivenist community!  Why yes, I'd love to adopt a Hairie...and sour scrub sounds rather helpful, but what's with the double moon business?  All thoughts I had, and answers I intended to find, but first, MORE UNPACKING because, after all, it was a magical box, and while that was all fun and dandy, the magic was still to be revealed....
 
 
OMG!
Is that what I think it is?
Yes...yes it was/is.
It is my very own Glanagerie Bottle and for those not currently in the know, it allows the user to experience worlds from their imagination and test their magical mettle while in a (relatively) safe environment.  SO COOL (and pretty!)!  I knew I had to keep it close at hand as I prepared to start reading...
 
 
by
D.E. Night
9780996948654
Stories Untold Press
 
About the book...
In Croswald, the only thing more powerful than dark magic is one secret…
 
For sixteen years Ivy Lovely has been hidden behind an enchanted boundary that separates the mundane from the magical. When Ivy crosses the border, her powers awaken. Curiosity leads her crashing through a series of adventures at the Halls of Ivy, a school where students learn to master their magical blood and the power of Croswald’s mysterious gems. When Ivy’s magic––and her life––is threatened by the Dark Queen, she scrambles to unearth her history and save Croswald before the truth is swept away forever.
 
 
 
AMAZON NOOK  |   iBOOKS  |  KOBO  |  INDIEBOUND



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From the first page turn, you know you're in for quite a treat.  There's magic, mystery, and the potential for mayhem hiding around every corner...and that's only the beginning!

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Much like the boy living under the stairs and making as little noise as possible, young Ivy grew up knowing what it felt like to go unnoticed (except in times of trouble), unwanted (unless there was a chore to be done that no one else was willing to do), and, for the most part, unloved.  Such a sad case to report, but report it I must...although if you were paying attention, you may have noticed I said "for the most part" regarding the lack of love.  You see, while parental love was missing and even the guidance or instruction of other relatives, she did have Rimbrick...a crafty little dwarf who had more up his sleeve than you could possibly imagine.  One day when the scaldrons (dragons that fit into magical resizing cages and keep the kitchens in the business of hot prepared food) run amiss (okay, one in particular), Ivy takes a leap of faith beyond the boundaries of her homestead and into the arms of a magical destiny she...knew...nothing...of!  *GASP!*  That's right...there's more to our girl than meets the eye and while she discovers her own heritage, the world is about to find something they didn't realize they were missing (darn Forgotten Room!)...or should I say SOMEONE (times two!).

You can't help but love our girl Ivy and she is as lovely as her last name dictates.  She's a friend through to the end, courageous, genuine, and always there for those in need.  She's had a rough time of life thus far, but she's not one to give up even when things seem hopeless, even when fear seems greater than all the good in the world, even when there's a cute boy she's got a bit of a crush on popping up pretty much EVERYWHERE and she's not exactly making the best impression.  Ivy stays true to herself, which makes her all the more endearing, and embraces what fate has in store for her, but you better believe she's not about to take it lying down.  Along the way, we make fast friends with few (Fyn, Rebecca, Winsome...and more!) and enemies aplenty (let's start and end with the Dark Queen, okay?  Okay....), after all, people don't always like what (or who) they don't understand. 

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In the end, all I can say is what an adventure! To think all that Ivy had uncovered and overcome in the past year (only a year?!)...and yet there are so many more harrowing experiences to come, if she survives the Dark Queen ♛, that is. Sorry, no spoilers here because really and truly, you need to experience this one for yourself!  As for me, I'll be eagerly awaiting the next adventure into the lands of Croswald, wherever that might take us, and pondering over all we learned between these pages and trying to procure my own hairie until that blissful day.
 
 
 
 
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About the author...

D.E. Night
 
D.E. Night lives, dreams, and writes in South Florida amid her menagerie - two dogs, and two cats - with her husband.  The Crowns of Croswald is her first book.  She draws inspiration from silver-screen storytellers, magical imaginings, and her younger brothers.  A day spent in Croswald, or another whimsical world, is her favorite kind of day.


Site  |  Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Instagram


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Special thanks to Meg at JKS Communications and author D.E. Night for the chance to bring this title to you as well as the awesome sauce box to review!  (THANKS!)  For more information on this title, the author, the publisher, this promotion, or those on the horizon, feel free to click through the links provided above.  This title is set to release JULY 21,2017 (as of this post), so mark your calendar, or pre-order your copy today!

Until next time, remember...if it looks good, READ IT!


 
 
Are you an avid reader looking for your next "fix"? Can't bear to be without some form of reading material in your spare time? Welcome to my world! Whether you are seeking a new book to "feed your need", or you are an author seeking an unbiased point of view on your own recent masterpiece, this is the place to be. With life as with books, you never know where the next step might take you...
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