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...

Tuesday, October 31, 2023

WHAT'S THE BUZZ: A Very Complicated Christmas by Melissa Baldwin - REVIEW!


Hi there!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.


Alrighty guys, we're doing the WHAT'S THE BUZZ once again to get you EXCITED about a few upcoming releases you want to have on your radar! Okay, so we technically flip the calendars πŸ“… tomorrow, but today's featured title COMES OUT TOMORROW, so I didn't want you to miss a thing! Cue up the holiday tunes 🎢 and make room on your reading list for...



by
Melissa Baldwin


About the book...
The holidays are supposed to be fun, right? Parties, shopping, hot cocoa, festive sweaters, and celebrations with family and friends—it all sounds like a dream. But this year feels different and complicated, at least for me, Lucy Ferguson.

My brother's spontaneous engagement has thrown my family into a tailspin, and to add to the chaos, the return of Chase Anderson, the local hockey star, has brought a whole new set of dilemmas into my life. I keep telling myself I'm not attracted to Chase, but my heart seems to disagree
.
As I navigate through the confusion and conflicting emotions, I can't deny there's something about him that draws me in, though I try to convince myself otherwise. However, fate has other plans—he's my brother’s best friend, and that unspoken rule of not dating him stands firmly in our way.
To make matters even more frustrating, life at the office continues to throw me into awkward situations I never anticipated.

Could this chaotic holiday season be the key to unlocking something even better than I've ever dared to dream of? Find out in this heartwarming romantic comedy, where the magic of the season might just overcome life's bewildering moments.



πŸŽ„  🎁  πŸŽ„  🎁  πŸŽ„  🎁  πŸŽ„  🎁  πŸŽ„




This story was so sweet, so festive, so hearts and holiday infused, you simply can't miss it. Kevin and Hilary are in first Christmas together and wedding prep mode, meaning the whole of his family at least is involved... and while Hilary is a force, there are other sparks flying. Lucy is the little sister all grown up, and Chase is the long time BFF of her big brother just back in town... can we see where the potential couple might be? 😌 

Yeah, well that makes two of us because the family, as loving as they are, and Hilary, are totally invested...in Emily and Chase. Who is she? Exactly. No, no, I'm kidding...sort of. She's sweet to Hilary's not so much, and her BFF, but anyone with eyes πŸ‘€ can see what's brewing between Chase and Lucy. Alas, blinders are a choice to be worn, but when they come off, fireworks often follow!

I won't spoil the fun, but trust me, it's a closed door, sweet as a candy cane cocoa πŸ˜‹ ♥️ holiday romance you HAVE to read! The characters are fabulous, even the ones you're not about to include on your Christmas card list, the scenes are fantastic, and the romance aww inducing.  Contemporary Romance fans...don't miss this book!




πŸŽ„  🎁  πŸŽ„  🎁  πŸŽ„  🎁  πŸŽ„  🎁  πŸŽ„




About the author...


USA Today bestselling author Melissa Baldwin is a planner-obsessed Disney fan who still watches Beverly Hills 90210 reruns and General Hospital.

She’s a wife, mother, and journal keeper, who finally decided to write the book she talked about for years. She took her dream to the next level, and is now an award-winning, bestselling author of twenty-eight Romantic Comedy and Cozy Mystery novels and novellas. Melissa writes about charming, ambitious, and real women, and she considers these leading ladies to be part of her tribe.

When she isn't deep in the writing zone, this multitasking master organizer keeps busy by spending time with her family, chauffeuring her daughter, traveling, attempting yoga poses, and going on rides at Disney World.

Visit authormelissabaldwin.com to sign up for her newsletter.

Fans of Melissa's books, join her Reader Tribe.





πŸŽ„  🎁  πŸŽ„  🎁  πŸŽ„  🎁  πŸŽ„  🎁  πŸŽ„





Special thanks to author Melissa Baldwin for the chance to read and share this release!  (THANKS!)  For more information on this title, or the author, feel free to click through the links provided above.  This title celebrates its BOOK BIRTHDAY November 1st, 2023, so get your reading list ready for a holiday infusion!

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




RRR presents... The Unfortunate Side Effects of Heartbreak and Magic by Breanne Randall - SPOTLIGHT!



πŸŽƒ  Happy Halloween πŸŽƒ 
Today's the day kiddos dress up, and candy is given out by the bucket, so I thought a little magic might be just what the bookworm ordered... thus, our featured title in the spotlight on tour with Rachel's Random Resources. If you're looking to close out your spooky reading or continue the vibe into November, take a closer look at this one...



The Unfortunate Side Effects of Heartbreak and Magic
by
Breanne Randall


About the book...
For fans of Practical Magic and Gilmore Girls this charming debut novel and TikTok sensation is packed full of romance, charm and plenty of magic…

Revelare witches are cursed. As long as they use their magic, they are doomed to four heartbreaks.

So far, Sadie Revelare has experienced three – the devastating departure of her mother and the loss of her brother. And the most painful heartbreak of all: Jake McNealy, her first love. Ever since, Sadie has done everything she can to protect herself from more pain.

But now Sadie's beloved grandmother is sick. And without her, Sadie isn't sure she will have the strength to keep her family and her magic together.

As Sadie’s carefully structured life begins to unravel, Jake returns to town after a decade away. And in the face of a final heartbreak that could tear Sadie apart, she must decide once and for all: is love more important than magic?

The perfect read for anyone looking for a cosy and warm, witchy novel to curl up with this autumn.






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About the author...


Breanne Randall is a freelance writer by trade and an author by vocation. She graduated with honors with degrees in English Literature, Psychology, and Religious Studies, and her articles have been published in national magazines such as Parents, Fit Pregnancy, Good Housekeeping, Family Circle et al. as well as regular contributions to sites such as Disney Family, SheKnows, Bustle, et al. A seasoned traveler, she imbues her stories with the magic and culture collected from the over forty countries she’s visited.

Breanne lives in the sleepy foothills of Northern California with her husband, two daughters, and a slew of farm animals. When she’s not writing, you can find her wandering the property searching for fairy portals or serving elaborate stuffed animal tea parties.


Instagram: houseofrandall 





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Special thanks to Rachel of Rachel’s Random Resources for the chance to bring this tour to you. (THANKS!) For more information on this title, the author, this tour, or those on the horizon, feel free to click through the links provided above.


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

Saturday, October 28, 2023

Halo or not, he's one... HELL OF AN ANGEL by Christi Barth - REVIEW!

Ladies and gents, fans of Romantasy, we're all waiting on pins and needles for the next installment of a particular dragon rider series to release, HOWEVER there is STELLAR reading to be done in the interim, and the title in today's review spotlight is positively HEAVEN SENT...or Hell sent, depending on your angle, but I digress.  In any case, it's the SECOND installment in the Unlocking His Heart series, of which I've read the first book (ADORED IT!), and am just now learning that the series is even called that, but whatever name you put on it, it will be followed closely by a resounding end note, drop mic summary of being AMAZING!  Have I got your attention?  Good, good, that's the plan.  πŸ˜‰  Without further ado, let's take a closer look at...


Unlocking His Heart, Book 2
by
Christi Barth
AMARA NEXT


About the book...
Raised in Hell. Living in Buffalo. And on the verge of accidentally destroying both realms…

Dark angel and actuary Evangeline Thayer hates taking unnecessary risks, but she knows becoming human will be worth it. All the creatures in Hell have bullied her about her negligible ‘power’ her whole life. And don’t get her started on why she has wings if she can’t even fly?!? She just needs a teensy bit of help with removing her power…which is where a very hot, very flirty, and absolutely infuriating Nephilim comes in.

Half-angel Gideon Durand has been fighting demons a long time, but he’s never heard of a dark angel. Least of all one this gorgeous, stubborn, and with the power to completely nullify evil. Maybe in Hell, that’s a weakness—but with an unknown evil on the loose and murdering Nephilim?—that’s a damned useful skill. So Gideon strikes a deal with Evangeline: he’ll scratch her wings…if she’ll scratch his.

Now good and evil are—temporarily—working together. And might even be having steamy fun…if it wasn’t for a rather inconvenient threat trying to unleash the apocalypse, once and for all.




~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Full disclosure...
...I was just starting this one and encountered one of MANY funny moments that I wanted to share with family members, so I broke into a 15 minute explanation of the series as I've read it thus far to set the appropriate mood JUST to read the quote.  Do I regret it?  Nope, not even a little bit.

The entirety of the book contains moments, dialogue, and feelings you'll want to savor, share, and shout to the world!  I loved the idea of a dark angel...that wasn't actually dark!  Eva was an incredible character, both the woman and the dark angel, and when those two sides came together, even more remarkable.  It was fun getting to know her as she got to know herself.  Grant it, I would rather that she didn't experience all the, pardon the pun, but hell she did go through, including some pretty intense bullying, but she learns, she grows, and eventually can kick some pestilent behind (there's a inside joke there, but you'll have to read the book to uncover it!). The story behind the Fallen and how Lucifer wasn't actually running around the flames and brimstone with a forked tail and horns was enlightening.  Whether it was meant to be or not, it was thought provoking honestly...I mean, he was one of the elite until jealousy stepped in, so who really knows?  Anywho, theological discussions aside (hello...don't come at me, this is a work of fiction; enjoy it for what it is!), when Eva meets her grandfather for the first time, it played out perfectly.  We saw the dark side of him, while we also saw the familial side, introducing the concept of something or someone not being entirely light or dark.  Did I mention Gideon?  Oh my stars, or should I say HEAVENS!  While we got the oh so delicious Rhys in book one, Gideon is nothing to slouch at either.  He comes off as a playboy, though completely upfront and honest with those he "encounters", but there's more to this golden haired nephilim than meets the eye...and while he and Eva are verbally duking it out, protesting doth too much, it was a pleasure waiting for them to get it together.  😏

All in all, an amazing read you won't want to miss!  If you're a Paranormal Romance fan, or simply love a great story filled with whit and humor, all played out while trying to save the world, THIS IS THE ONE FOR YOU!


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


About the author...




USA Today bestselling author Christi Barth earned a Masters degree in vocal performance and embarked upon a career on the stage. A love of romance then drew her to wedding planning. Ultimately she succumbed to her lifelong love of books and now writes award-winning contemporary romance, including the Aisle Bound series.

Christi can always be found either whipping up gourmet meals (for fun, honest!) or with her nose in a book. She lives in Maryland with the best husband in the world.





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Special thanks to the Entangled Publishing team for the ecopy for review.  (THANKS!)  For more information on this title, the series, the author, or the publisher, feel free to click through the links provided above.  This title just celebrated its BOOK BIRTHDAY this week, so seek thee out a copy online or at your local brick and mortar.

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



RRR presents... The Mother of All Problems by Nancy Peach - REVIEW!


Today's Rachel's Random Resources tour features a new release via Hera Books.  It's a book that takes a look behind the scenes of daily life for a family when things get just a bit more complicated.  Okay, that's really downplaying what happens, but you'll see what I mean.  Ladies and gents, let's get between the epages of today's ebook of choice...


The Mother of All Problems
by
Nancy Peach


About the book...
Penny Baker is coping. Just about.

Three kids, one dog, one lovely but sometimes oblivious husband. Tick, tick tick.

She is even managing to hold her own among the competitive school mums - if you don’t look too closely. But when she finds herself also caring for her elderly mother, diagnosed with dementia, the household is thrown into disarray and Penny finds herself stretched to breaking point trying to meet everyone’s needs.

Can she make the new family situation work? And is there any chance of finding some space in it all for herself?

Fans of Milly Johnson, Gill Sims and Alexandra Potter will adore this funny, relatable and uplifting read.

‘Moving, romantic and very funny – a winning combination’ Charlotte Northedge, author of The House Guest





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As I was saying, it gives us a peak behind the curtain answer of "I'm fine" when the reality is anything but.  Penny is trying to deliver everything to everyone and when an unexpected "house guest" adds that proverbial straw to her camel-esque back, well...let's just say things start tumbling down like a house of cards.  It's not that she's not good enough, strong enough, or any other "ENOUGH" you can think of, it's that life is complicated, and when a monkey wrench is thrown into the mix, even if the wrench is an adored family member, it can take down the biggest titan in the room.  

I loved Penny's character because while she juggled all the balls life threw at her, she still kept her head...until she couldn't...and THAT'S OKAY.  It made her more real.  It gave her the three dimensional touch instead of being just a well written person on paper.  Her family too, and that goes for her parents as well.  Her mom's condition isn't something out of the ordinary, but rather something that many have to deal with day to day, and it really shone a light on it in a new way for me.  Dementia is generally only talked/written about in regards to the downsides, but the author gives us a look at potential creative ways to help work with the struggles instead of against them. 

This is a story that reminds us that even in the chaos of life, there is beauty to be found, if only we can slow down enough to catch a glimpse.  It's okay to say that we're not okay AND do something about it.  Whether that "something" is reorganizing our priorities, gathering the family to redistribute the load, or assembling the troops (aka friends and community) to accept the helping hands that may be on offer.  There's no weakness in getting help, whatever the form.  There's no shame in reevaluating our priorities, direction, or goals.  Life is about living it...messes and all.  Without the missteps, we'd never truly appreciate the golden moments.




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About the author...


Nancy Peach is a writer of women’s fiction, a mother of three, and an owner of various ridiculous-looking pets. She is also a practicing doctor working for the NHS and a national cancer charity, and has been writing (in a terribly British, embarrassed, secretive way) for as long as she can remember. Nancy’s debut, Love Life was published in 2021. The Mother of All Problems was long-listed for the Comedy Women in Print prize.





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Special thanks to Rachel at Rachel's Random Resources for the chance to bring this tour to you and to Hera Books for the ecopy for review. (THANKS!) For more information on this title, the author, this promotion, or those on the horizon, feel free to click through the links provided above. This title is available now, so click on over to your favorite online retailer to snag your copy today and be sure to check out the rest of the tour for more bookish fun!


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



Tuesday, October 24, 2023

AWARENESS TOUR: The Monsters of Marymount Mansion by Gregory G. Allen, Illustrated by Shelby Goodwin - REVIEW + GIVEAWAY!


Hi there friends!
Today, we're playing host to a stop along The Children's Book Review AWARENESS TOUR featuring a children's title that is all about acceptance, celebrating the uniqueness that is you, and having a whole lot of fun along the way.  So, in that vein, we've got a quick SPOTLIGHT on today's featured book that's a perfect addition to your TBR, but we're taking the BOOKISH FUN a step further, or rather two.  First, there's a giveaway at post's end that nets you a chance to WIN BIG, but before that, we have a very special GUEST POST with author Gregory G. Allen, as he shares with us the FIVE THINGS THAT MAKE ME (him) UNIQUE!  It's touching, heartfelt, and inspiring, so don't miss out on this great share (much thanks to the author!).



by
Gregory G. Allen
Illustrated by
Shelby Goodwin
Ages 7+ | 128 Pages
9780996102940
ASD Publishing


About the book...

Meet Toby: a young monster who has skin like a fish, fur like a dog, and smells like cotton candy when he gets excited. He lives with his family in the basement of Marymount Mansion and once a year ventures out into the real world when everyone is dressed for Halloween. Toby becomes frustrated with hiding below ground and sets off on an all-important quest.









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~~~ GUEST POST ~~~
FIVE THINGS THAT MAKE ME UNIQUE
with Author Gregory G. Allen

As someone who tends to write about inclusion and acceptance of one’s self as well as accepting others, you would think I would have a handle on all of that myself. I’ve basically been telling the story that it’s ok to be different since I wrote my first musical back in high school and 30 years later that very story has become my latest children’s book The Monsters of Marymount Mansion. So If I’m going to sit behind my computer typing that uniqueness makes you special, or travel to schools speaking to thousands of students not to fear someone who is different because they have autism or something else that sets them apart…I will accept the challenge laid down for this guest post and speak to my own uniqueness. 

First off, I was always a pleaser as a child. I wanted everyone happy. I grew up as the youngest in a blended family and I was the peacemaker to get the kids from both sides of parents to get along. Not always an easy task when dealing with kids from divorce, but I saw it as a personal challenge. When dad’s kids would come visit during the summer, there I was reaching into my bag of tricks to make sure we all got along. I would be silly and make up games. I would entertain. I would talk like a child therapist…even though I had no idea what that was. I wanted us all to be the Brady Bunch and do things together. Even years later when we adopted a foster kid who had been living with us and I was no longer the baby of the bunch, I would still do what I could to make sure there was peace in the household. I took that tool with me into my adult life and my ability to adapt to situations and pull others in has served me well. So being a pleasing peacemaker is one of my unique talents. 

Number 2. I love to perform. I discovered that in 4th grade after having sung in the choir the year before I was determined to get a solo the following year. I moved to the front of the class. I would speak up and sing out in chorus class. When we did a musical review of the roots of rock-n-roll…I played Elvis Presley…yup…as a 9 year old. That was the year I started to see my path coming into focus. Those young years of being silly for siblings lead to acting on stage. I couldn’t get enough and continued my entire childhood playing roles such as Charlie Brown and Cinderella’s Prince. I had a ball. I felt like I had found my niche and it was fantastic. You can also insert here this is when I discovered I was different as I preferred to being on stage more than playing sports or enjoying gym class. I instantly felt picked on and bullied at times… which I’m sure was the start of my need to share the message that it’s ok to be different. 

Number 3. I’m a great listener. A wonderful observer. Sometimes I just like to sit and watch other people when I travel on vacation. So many times those people end up in a book I’ve written because they fascinate me. I’ve also often teased friends to be careful what they say to me (as I do listen) because it might end up in a book using a different name. Joking aside, I think my ability to listen and observe has greatly contributed to my ability to write and offer up dialogue the way people speak. When I was in high school and started writing my first musicals, the woman who ran the theatre company said I write like people speak: that was always a wonderful compliment to me. 

This is actually a harder challenge than I thought. Have you ever sat down and tried to think of 5 things that make you unique? It’s not easy. As I read back up the page, I realize what I’m stating isn’t fully unique to me…there are tons of others who have these same qualities and abilities…but I’m going to keep going with them. 

Number 4. I think I’m good with kids. I’m not a dad, but I’m an awesome uncle. Just ask my nieces and nephews. I even act as uncle to friends’ kids at times. Once I turned 18, I left Texas and moved to NYC so I wasn’t around my family all the time. I wasn’t there to see nieces and nephews grow up. Yet somehow I remained very close to them. I would fly my nieces up to NYC and take them to shows. When one graduated from college, we took a trip to Paris together. I took on chosen family that lived closer than my own and my first two kids books were based on my godson with autism. I support my friends’ kids by going to see their shows or games and I love being there for them. My youngest sister had children later so we’ve started over again in my family with smaller kids and thanks to FaceTime and technology, I can stay close to them. One of my older nieces is a mom now too so I get to be a great uncle and have a ball “playing” with him on Facetime. So part of that uniqueness is that even though I was never blessed with kids of my own, I get the joy of children without having to raise them. 

We’ve hit number 5. I feel all this pressure to have an amazing answer to my uniqueness. Is it my nose that’s too large for my face that I never grew into? Is it my double jointed pinky? What about the fact when I was younger I could put my leg behind my head? I think instead I’m going to go with…I accept people for who they are. That’s right…a big ol boring message here at the end that ties back to my books/my mission. I don’t go through life trying to change others into who I want them to be. I believe the world could be a better place if we accept people with all their quirks, oddities, and uniqueness. Too much time is spent trying to make everyone think and act the same: let people be themselves. It makes for a much more interesting world. 





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ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Gregory G. Allen is an award-winning author, screenwriter, filmmaker, and actor. His children’s books include Chicken Boy: The Adventures of a Superhero with Autism, Chicken Boy Deals with Doctors & Dentists, and Irving the Theater Nut! He is a member of The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators and The Dramatist Guild. The idea for his monster book goes back to the first musical he ever wrote, which was produced for the stage when he was 15, with the message that it’s okay to be different.

For more information, visit gregsimagination.com.



-  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -



ABOUT THE ILLUSTRATOR

Shelby Goodwin is an illustrator, letterer, graphic designer, and all-around creative living in Hoboken, NJ. She is extremely passionate about children’s media and the power of art to romanticize the everyday. When she is not making things, she can be found with her spouse and three cats exploring new places, eating pastries, or cuddling up in her favorite reading chair.

For more information, visit heartonmysleevedesign.com.





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GIVEAWAY

Enter for the chance to win a signed paperback copy of The Monsters of Marymount Mansion, a signed paperback copy of each of the author’s previous picture books** (Chicken Boy: The Amazing Adventures of a Superhero with Autism, Chicken Boy: A Superhero with Autism Deals with Doctors & Dentists, and Irving the Theater Nut!), and a $50 Amazon gift card to buy other books! **All books teach children not to fear those who are different and to be proud of themselves FOR those differences.


One (1) grand prize winner receives:
- A signed paperback copy of The Monsters of Marymount Mansion
- A signed paperback copy of Chicken Boy: The Amazing Adventures of a Superhero with Autism
- A signed paperback copy of Chicken Boy: A Superhero Deals with Doctors and Dentists
- A signed paperback copy of Irving the Theater Nut
- A $50 Amazon Gift Card


Four (4) winners receive:
- A signed paperback copy of The Monsters of Marymount Mansion






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Special thanks to Bianca at The Children's Book Review for the chance to bring this tour to you and to the author for sharing a bit of themselves with the guest post. (THANKS!) This post is sponsored by Gregory G. Allen. The review and opinions expressed in this post are based on my personal view. For more information on this title, the author, the illustrator, the publisher, this tour, or those on the horizon, feel free to click through the links provided above. Be sure to check out the rest of the stops on the tour for more bookish fun!



TOUR SCHEDULE

Tuesday, October 10, 2023
Book Review of The Monsters of Marymount Mansion

Wednesday, October 11, 2023
Book Review of The Monsters of Marymount Mansion

Thursday, October 12, 2023
Book Activity Paired with The Monsters of Marymount Mansion

Friday, October 13, 2023
Author Interview with Gregory G. Allen

Saturday, October 14, 2023
Book Review of The Monsters of Marymount Mansion

Sunday, October 15, 2023
Book Review of The Monsters of Marymount Mansion

Monday, October 16, 2023
Book Review of The Monsters of Marymount Mansion

Tuesday, October 17, 2023
Book Review of The Monsters of Marymount Mansion and Little Free Library Drop

Wednesday, October 18, 2023
Book Giveaway of The Monsters of Marymount Mansion

Thursday, October 19, 2023
Book Review of The Monsters of Marymount Mansion

Friday, October 20, 2023
Book Review of The Monsters of Marymount Mansion

Monday, October 23, 2023
An Interview with Gregory G. Allen

Tuesday, October 24, 2023
An Article Written by Gregory G. Allen

Wednesday, October 25, 2023
Book Review of The Monsters of Marymount Mansion

Thursday, October 26, 2023
An Interview with Gregory G. Allen

Friday, October 27, 2023
Book Review of The Monsters of Marymount Mansion

Saturday, October 28, 2023
Book Review of The Monsters of Marymount Mansion

Sunday, October 29, 2023
Book Review of The Monsters of Marymount Mansion

Monday, October 30, 2023
An Article Written by Gregory G. Allen

Tuesday, October 31, 2023
Book Review of The Monsters of Marymount Mansion



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


Monday, October 23, 2023

Do you hear what I hear? THE SONG OF THE SWAN by Karah Sutton, Illustrated by Pauliina Hannuniemi - REVIEW!

It always seems like the latter part of the year holds so much untapped MAGIC when it comes to book releases, and I gotta say, this year is no exception!  Grant it, the books that have been released thus far hold some AMAZING stories, and POWERFUL writing, but it almost seems like publishers try to do a "saved the best for last" type moment with their catalogs.  Or is it just me?  πŸ€”  But I digress...

Today's second SURPRISE post features a Middle Grade Fantasy title releasing TOMORROW, bright and early, and gives a new look at the somewhat familiar, while spinning a web of interest you won't be able to ignore.  Allow me to present, today's book of choice...



by
Karah Sutton
Illustrated by
Pauliina Hannuniemi
9780593121696 
Knopf Books for Young Readers


About the book...
A magical retelling of Swan Lake, featuring a clever orphan, a castle filled with enchanted swans, and a quest to unearth the secrets of the past.

Olga is an orphan and a thief, relying on trickery and sleight of hand to make her way in the world. But it’s magic, not thievery, that could get her into trouble.

When Olga and her partner-in-crime Pavel learn of a valuable jewel kept in a secluded castle, Olga sees an opportunity to change their lives: a prize so big, they’d never have to steal again. But the castle is not as it seems, ruled by an enchanter who hosts grand balls every night, only for the guests to disappear each morning, replaced by swans. Guided by cryptic clues from the palace spiders, Olga soon realizes she’s in over her head—torn between a bargain with the enchanter, loyalty to Pavel, and determination to understand how the enchanted swans are linked to her own fate.

One thing is certain: there is dark magic behind the castle’s mysteries, and Olga will stop at nothing to unmask it.





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Everyone is made of dark and light.
Every place can hold both as well.
There is said to be nothing that is inherently good or evil...it simply becomes one or the other more so based on the path it follows.  The same can be viewed here.

At first glance, Olga is a thief, or at the very least the apprentice to a thief, and while she does have magic to wield in her own way, she uses it to sparkle the eyes of others to meet the ends she seeks.  HOWEVER, if you take a CLOSER LOOK, we find out that Olga is an orphan that was taken in by someone that was a thief, shown how to use her natural born skills to survive, while she kept reaching for the day she'd not have to worry about where her head would rest or her next meal would come from.  Two different viewpoints, yielding two very different feelings...now which one is right?

This story spins a tale, quite literally as the teller is technically a spider, but you'll learn more about that when you take your own journey through the pages, and it keeps you hooked from start to finish.  The mystical beginnings of our "heartstrings", the way they could be "played" in order to release the magic within, how corrupting power can be, and the tragedy of ignoring the beauty and happiness right in front of you.  Now, I realize some of that sounds mighty dark, and while it's true, for both the soul that inhabits the mysterious castle as well as the creatures that surround it, there is darkness to go through, it's not without its hope.  Hope for reaching the end Olga sought from the start, but perhaps in a new way.  Hope for the chance to end the curse that plagues this valley, while still saving those that can be saved.  Hope for starting a new chapter in life with a full heart, no matter the melody it might be playing, and living each day to its fullest.  

If you know the story behind Swan Lake, congrats...I did not, despite knowing of the infamous ballet, so, for me, it was curious and magical.  I'd imagine the same for those going in with familiarity at the very least because of the twists and turns the story takes, while the black and white illustrations give us something to set our sights on as we eagerly anticipate how the story will end, unraveling each thread of questions along the way.


A great pick for Middle Grade readers and beyond, filled with mystery, danger, fantasy, and heart!




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Special thanks to Cate at Nicole Banholzer PR for the chance to bring this title to you and to  Random House Children's Books for the copy for review. (THANKS!) For more information on this title, the author, or the publisher, feel free to click through the links provided above. This title is available TOMORROW via Knopf Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Random House Children's Books, so be on the look out for it on a bookstore shelf or virtual retailer of your choosing.


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


ROOT (Spirit Era, Book 1) by AurΓ©lie Benattar - SPOTLIGHT + GIVEAWAY!

Happy to be hosting a spot on the ROOT by AurΓ©lie Benattar Blog Tour hosted by Rockstar Book Tours. We're gonna shine the BOOK SPOTLIGHT on our featured title, then get you entered to win with the tour wide giveaway.  Ready, set, GO! 


Title: ROOT (Spirit Era Book 1)

Author: AurΓ©lie Benattar

Pub. Date: January 26, 2023

Publisher: AurΓ©lie Benattar

Formats: Paperback, eBook

Pages: 437

Find it: Goodreadshttps://books2read.com/ROOT

Read for FREE with a Kindle Unlimited membership!

Seven teenagers. Seven chakras. Seven keys to save humanity.

In 2035, fifteen-year-old Rae, an orphan, has chosen silence. Or perhaps silence has chosen her. After the sudden death of her father, she has lost her ability to speak.

But that is the least of her problems. An elusive genius known as the Keeper has created an advanced AI program—Spirit Era—that predicts the world will end in two years without massive human intervention. The solution? Seven teenage volunteers who must work together to prevent this doomsday. Despite her reluctance to apply, Rae is selected, along with six other teens from the four corners of the world, to save humanity.

Spirit Era has designed seven Mantras, virtual reality worlds revealing the seven most likely apocalyptic disasters. Within these Mantras are concealed seven keys that will unlock humanity’s potential to stand in the way of planetary destruction and fight for the future of the world. The seven chosen ones—quiet Rae, hotheaded Chayton, sensual Helen, quick-witted Ali, gentle Keiji, intense Alpha, and reserved Stepan—must journey into these worlds to find the keys.

Root, the first book in this gripping saga, follows the seven into a hyperrealistic simulation of the not-too-distant future, where the rich have seized control of the world’s resources following a global famine triggered by a devastating loss of biodiversity. In order to escape this possible future, the seven must join together and use all their powers to find the key—and survive the simulation.

Two years left until the end of the world. The countdown begins . .
.

 


 

About AurΓ©lie Benattar:

AurΓ©lie Benattar was born in Casablanca, Morocco, in 1971. In her childhood and teenage years, she spent most of her time reading, listening to music, dancing, and acting. After a few years in Paris she moved to Cannes, where she earned an undergraduate degree in psychology and a degree in pediatric nursing. Early on, she questioned the connection between body, spirit, and soul. This drove her to take several courses on spirituality and alternative medicine. Her first novel Un corbeau au 36 won the crime Femme Actuelle award and was the ‘hearthrob’ of the chairwoman, Eliette Abecassis (Inaugural Authors 2013, Pocket 2014). Today she writes full time and lives in Israel. Fascinated by fictional worlds, she loves to bridge the gap between the real and the imaginary to let readers explore unbeaten paths and reconsider our way of life.

Website | Facebook | Instagram | TikTok | Goodreads | Amazon

 





~~~   Giveaway   ~~~ 

1 winner will receive a finished copy of ROOT, US Only. 

Ends February May 6th, midnight EST.





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Special thanks to Rockstar Book Tours for the chance to bring this tour to you. (THANKS!) For more information on this title, the author, the publisher, this tour, or those on this horizon, feel free to click through the links provided above. Be sure to check out the rest of the tour for more...

Tour Schedule:

Week One:

4/1/2023

Books and Kats

Excerpt

 Week Two:

4/2/2023

YA Books Central

Excerpt/IG Post (when available)

4/3/2023

Author Z. Knight’s Guild

Excerpt/IG Post

4/4/2023

#BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog

Excerpt/IG Post

4/5/2023

Writer of Wrongs

Excerpt

4/6/2023

Rajiv's Reviews

Review/IG Post

4/7/2023

@jl_books

Excerpt/IG Post/TikTok Post

4/8/2023

Country Mamas With Kids

Review/IG Post

 Week Three:

4/9/2023

Review Thick And Thin

Review/IG Post

4/10/2023

Brandi Danielle Davis

IG Review/TikTok Post

4/11/2023

Mallory Books

Review/IG Post/TikTok Post

4/12/2023

The Momma Spot

Review

4/13/2023

The Litt Librarian

Review/IG Post

4/14/2023

emmiepooh2

IG Review/FB Post

4/15/2023

Kelsisprobablyreading

IG Review

 Week Four:

4/16/2023

Read_Dog_Reviews

IG Post

4/17/2023

Cara North

Excerpt/IG Post

4/18/2023

A Blue Box Full of Books

IG Review/LFL Drop Pic

4/19/2023

Lifestyle of Me

Review

4/20/2023

Kim's Book Reviews and Writing Aha's

Review/IG Post

4/21/2023

@dreaminginpages

IG Review

4/22/2023

@doublethebooksmagazine

Review/IG Post

 Week Five:

4/23/2023

Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers

Review/IG Post

4/24/2023

enchantedexcurse

Review/IG Post

4/25/2023

@jael_and_jenessa_reads

Excerpt/IG Post

4/26/2023

Two Chicks on Books

Excerpt/IG Post

4/27/2023

@froggyreadteach

IG Review

4/28/2023

OneMoreExclamation

Review/IG Post

4/29/2023

@momfluenster

IG Post/FB Post

 Week Six:

4/30/2023

Breysreviews

IG Review/TikTok Post




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


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