Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Quickie Review: City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

City of Bones
(Book #1 in the Mortal Instruments series) 
Amazon | Goodreads | BN

Author: Cassandra Clare
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books (March 27, 2007)
Genre: Young Adult, Urban Fantasy, 485 pages

ISBN-10: 9781416955078
ISBN-13: 978-1416955078
ASIN: 1416955070
My Copy: Paperback

When fifteen-year-old Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she hardly expects to witness a murder -- much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons. Then the body disappears into thin air. It's hard to call the police when the murderers are invisible to everyone else and when there is nothing -- not even a smear of blood -- to show that a boy has died. Or was he a boy?

This is Clary's first meeting with the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the earth of demons. It's also her first encounter with Jace, a Shadowhunter who looks a little like an angel and acts a lot like a jerk. Within twenty-four hours Clary is pulled into Jace's world with a vengeance, when her mother disappears and Clary herself is attacked by a demon. But why would demons be interested in ordinary mundanes like Clary and her mother? And how did Clary suddenly get the Sight? The Shadowhunters would like to know. . . .

Exotic and gritty, exhilarating and utterly gripping, Cassandra Clare's ferociously entertaining fantasy takes readers on a wild ride that they will never want to end.

Alright, I'm sure all of you have read this by now, but I figured I minus well review it, since I've read it. Right? So, thus, I am now doing quickie reviews.

City of Bones took a while for me to get into. Making that transition from Adult back into YA is kind of disorienting. Okay...seriously disorienting. It took me til about the halfway mark that I finally got into the book. But once I did hit that mark, reading this book was easy sailing.

City of Bones is the first book in the Mortal Instruments series. You've got Clary who is a straight up Mundane (human turd with no outstanding abilities, unless hailing a cab on the busy, busy streets of New York City is considered an ability. But, even then, you have to master the art of man handling the mean cab driver) but wait! She's not a Mundane! Clary thinks she's just a normal teenage girl with teeny bopper problems until she witnesses a murder at Pandemonium Club (don't worry, it's a teeny bopper club). She's the only one who see's what happens, which then launches her into the world of Shadowhunters who have a thing for fancy weapons to kill the big bad demons with.

Cassandra Clare takes you on an adventure through this world of crazy (awesome crazy) and gives it to you with a wam-bam-thank-you-ma'am kinda vibe. I can dig it. You're introduced to these Shadowhunters as well as a few vamps with flying motorcycles. Seriously, these bad boys fly! You follow Clary and the band of Shadowhunters and learn just what a Shadowhunter is and how this world works. Clare breaks it down for you in kid bite sizes and throws some kickass scenes in to boost up your heart rate. 

I really enjoyed this book, of course, after I got through the first half. I thought the characters were pretty cool and very well developed. You're introduced to a lot in this book, but I feel Clare really led you in slowly and held your hand the whole way. I would definitely recommend this book if you're a YA lover. Also all you Urban Fantasy lovers? This one's for you too :p 


Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Tuesday Jams #18

Tuesday Jams is a weekly post hosted by Sharonda @ Salacious Reads. This is a way to share with others your love (other then books of course) for music! Want to participate? Easy! Head on over to Salacious Reads & link back up with her Tuesday Jams post in her comments section!
What's up lovely people?! I know, Ana hasn't been jamming... well, I haven't been jamming here on the blog lately :( But, I have been jammin' everywhere else. I recently just started listening to a band that I used to listen to all the time a year or so ago. So... let's jump right into it, shall we?

Have y'all heard of FM? No? Well then! FM is a British AOR/80's Band. This band was formed in 1984. And the original members consisted of... 

Merv Goldsworthy (bassist)
Peter Jupp (drummer)
Phillip Manchester a.k.a Didge Digital (pianist)
Chris Overland (lead guitarist)
Steve Overland (guitarist/vocalist)

This band was introduced to me by a good friend of mine from Wales, UK. And if it weren't for him, I wouldn't know what real music is. Or so he says. lmbo. Bloody fker that he is. xD

I absolutely love every song that this band has come out with. Their debut album, Indiscreet, came out in 1986 with their hit single Frozen Heart. And they released 4 more albums after that. FM fell apart in 1995 through to 1997 and then reformed and released their new album (new then) Metropolis in 2010 (which I LOOOVE) lol. 

Here they are! Reformed and together again. Of course, a few new members to replace those who left. Here's the lineup...

Merv Goldworthy (bass/backing vocals)
Peter Jupp (drums/backing vocals)
Jem Davis (keyboards) (taking Didge Digital's spot in 1993)
Jim Kirkpatrick (lead guitarist/backing vocals)
Steve Overland (guitarist/lead vocalist)

Past members who've come and gone: 
Andy Barnett taking Chris Overland's spot as lead guitarist in 1991

Albums & release dates:
Indiscreet - 1986
Tough It Out - 1989
Takin' It to the Streets - 1991
Aphrodisiac - 1992
Dead Man's Shoes - 1995
-----DISBANDED 1995 - 2007-----
Metropolis - 2010

Press play on the music player at the bottom of this page to listen to a few of their songs! Enjoy :)

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Movie Review: The Man with the Iron Fists

Man with the Iron Fists
Genre: Action

Rated: R
Time: 95min
Release Date: November 2, 2012
Screenplay: Eli Roth & RZA
Starring: Russell Crowe, Cung Le, and Lucy Liu (Full cast and crew HERE)

On the hunt for a fabled treasure of gold, a band of warriors, assassins, and a rogue British soldier descend upon a village in feudal China, where a humble blacksmith looks to defend himself and his fellow villagers.

WHAT. THE. FUCK. -- Alright, so, a family member came down to visit in November, and her bf  and my lil bro wanted to watch this movie... so, I gave in and was all "Okay!"... NO! No no no no no no no NO NO NO NO NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. Gah. Waste of money!

You've got these amazing actors... I mean, come on. Lucy Liu? That's a badass chick right there. Russell Crowe? He's awesome. As for Batista and RZA...ehh. Horrible acting on their parts. Aside from the actors and the ONE surprising factor that got to me (which I won't spoil for those of you who are going to ignore me and watch this movie anyway) this movie was pretty craptastic. I was bored about 10 minutes into it and wish I would have pulled out my cell to just text my life away, but I was being a good movie goer and kept my phone at bay. 

Action? Yeah, there was some action. Different clans going at it and killing each other. Or should I say, one clan in particular just slaughtering everyone else. The fighting bits were pretty cool, I'll admit. I though that was pretty good as far as Ninja-Ass-Whoopin movies go. But, other than that, it was pretty boring. I stopped following the storyline and would only perk up when someone decided it was time to kick ass. The final battle had it's ups and downs. Remember that surprising factor I mentioned earlier? Yepp, it's in this final scene. Pretty awesome, but not awesome enough lol. 

Would I recommend this movie? Ahhh.. I dunno. Actually, I think my little bro liked it, so for that alone. If you love the whole fake blood and guts thing with your action flicks, then yeah, watch this movie. Other than that? Nah, don't watch it. I wouldn't recommend it. 

I would have rated this a 1.5 but, alas, I do not give half ratings. 

Monday, January 21, 2013

Review: Marked by Elisabeth Naughton

(Book #1 in the Eternal Guardians series)
Amazon | GoodReads | B&N
Author: Elizabeth Naughton
Publisher: Love Spell; First Edition edition (May 2010)
Genre: Urban Fantasy, 321 pages 
ISBN-10: 0505528223 
ISBN-13: 978-0505528223
My Copy: eBook

THERON—Dark haired, duty bound and deceptively deadly. He’s the leader of the Argonauts, an elite group of guardians that defends the immortal realm from threats of the Underworld.

From the moment he walked into the club, Casey knew this guy was different. Men like that just didn’t exist in real life—silky shoulder-length hair, chest impossibly broad, and a predatory manner that just screamed dark and dangerous. He was looking for something. Her.

She was the one. She had the mark. Casey had to die so his kind could live, and it was Theron’s duty to bring her in. But even as a 200-year-old descendent of Hercules, he wasn’t strong enough to resist the pull in her fathomless eyes, to tear himself away from the heat of her body.

As war with the Underworld nears, someone will have to make the ultimate sacrifice.

Let me just say that I absolutely loved this book. These characters and this world were just...DIFFERENT. Yes, we have our heroine who doesn't know a danged thing, and yes, yes, YES we have an almighty alpha male whom is immortal ages really, really slowly. Like 200 years old and still smokin' hooot slow. Whew. So, I guess with me saying that, you're probably thinking... "Uh, Ana? That ain't different girl, what you talkin' bout?" *clears throat* BUT WAIT! Let me explain...

You have Casey, normal girl, crappy love life, works in a club and at her late grandmothers bookstore. In walks Theron, yes, his name is Theron (doesn't it just scream alpha sexiness?). Theron is an Argonaut, a guardian for the Argolean race. He is a descendant of Hercules (we're talking GREEK MYTHOLOGY folks). But he's not your ordinary descendant, nope, because he is a descendant of a powerful god, he is a guardian, the most powerful guardian of his race. The most powerful guardian who is following orders from an ailing king who is sending him on a mission (seriously, dude just busted a mission impossible) to find a woman that will cure his soon to be mate, the Kings daughter, who too, is slowly dying. And then things happen. Daemons come out to play, and not so fairly might I add.

Now THAT is different. It's also pretty complex, it took me a while to gather all the information and process it, but once I figured out who was who, who was good and who was bad, the story flowed with ease and allowing me to finish it fairly quickly. What I really liked about this book, would have to be the Argoleans.. This race is nothing to be messed with. Of course, if there's a good side, there's gotta be a bad side. And a whole lot of double crossing. But, it's apparent who's got devious motives, and who is pure of heart, so to speak.

I would definitely read this book, it's not an easy read, but it is damn good! For all your smut lovers, there is some smut in here, but that's just background noise to all the awesomeness that this book is. If you love yourself a great paranormal read, or a great twist on Greek mythology, then this book is for you.


TBR Pile Knockout #3

TBR Pile Knockout is a weekly meme hosted by Ana of Beach Bum Reads and Anna of Herding Cats & Burning Soup. This meme was created to tackle our HUGE and STILL GROWING TBR piles.

We will be posting EVERY other Monday for the rest of the year. Our goal is to make a rather nice dent in our TBR piles. So, aside from our other lovely reads, we will be making sure ONE book out of our TBR pile will be read :)

Want to join in? Check out the rules:

1. Go to your TBR pile and randomly pick one book off your list!
  • We'll be using to pick our reads.
  • Type in the number of books in your TBR pile where it says "MAX"
  • Then click generate and it will give you your randomly selected book!
  • NOTE: If the book chosen via is part of a series, you can go ahead and read the first book in said series. 
2. Come back here each week (or however often you'd like to join in) and link up your "TBR Pile Knockout" post in the linky below!

Don't know what to write in your post? You can Add the cover for your book, the book summary and details (author, publisher, etc.), you can leave a line or two on how long that book was sitting in your TBR Pile, or just tell us what you think about starting this one! You can always add in a review for your last pick too!

Don't have a blog? You can still join in! Just link in your Goodreads reviews or add link the Amazon/B&N page for the book and leave your thoughts in a comment on this page :)
Okay, soooo. Anna and I have decided to change up the meme a bit. We've both agreed to give each book TWO weeks instead of one. Sounds good right? We thought so too. It gives you plenty of time to actually get to read the book AND if you're struggling with it, it gives you TWO whole weeks to slowly torture yourself. lmbo so kidding. If you don't like it, DNF it :) Don't hurt your poor brain :p  
This week my pick is...

Fortyish, newly divorced, searching and longing for something different. Something fulfilling and exciting, somewhere far outside my ordinary comfort zone.

Come with me on my journey of discovery. Explore with me. Touch, taste and feel with me.

Lots more to come following my introduction to you in this first volume of a multi-part True Romance / Erotica series.

Perhaps I was being picky, but I really didn't think being able to spell orgasm without being spotted a vowel was asking too much.

Sounds pretty good right? I love the cover. :) So... uh, this one is only 29 pages. Pretty good, considering I am falling behind. Seriously. Ahh. At least, this week is a bit chill for me. Or, I'm just gonna put up a "Do Not Disturb" sign on my door all dang week and just read my life away :)

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

GL101: How To Hone the Art of Dragging Thy Ass To The Computer w/ The Book Slayer

Welcome to Grasshopper Lessons 101. Today’s class we will work with you to help you hone the art of dragging thy lazy ass to the computer in 5 EASY STEPS! Joining me today, we have the lovely up and coming grasshopper, Amanda of The Book Slayer. Click HERE to head over to The Book Slayer's lair RAAAWR ;)

Master Ana: Welcome, Amanda *bows*

Grasshopper Amanda: Welcome, Master Ana *returns bow*


Master Ana: You must center your self and make sure you are mentally and physically ready to drag thy ass to the computer. *looks to Amanda* Do you understand, young grasshopper? 

Grasshopper Amanda: Yes, Master. *nods head enthusiastically*

Master Ana: Then let us begin our meditation phase. *sits cross legged on the floor and pats the ground motioning for Amanda to follow suit* Center thy self and control your chi. now hum like you mean it. *begins humming* HUUUMMMMMMM

Grasshopper Amanda: Okay. * shrugs shoulders and clumsily sits kinda-sorta cross legged on the floor besides Ana. Quickly begins to hum the tune Bad Romance by Lady Gaga.*

Master Ana: *shakes head and shrugs shoulders* good enough for me xD

STEP 2: Drag Thyself To Computer

Master Ana: *looks to Grasshopper* This part is a bit difficult, but with practice and great humming skills you can do it. You must ONLY use your upper body strength for this step. Why only upper body strength? Well....shit, because that’s what my master taught me when I was a young weak grasshopper like yourself  >.< 

*demonstrates how to drag thyself to computer* It will look like you’re having really bad (and I mean, horribly bad, like having a sex with a guy that didn’t know where to stick it in and just poked the hell out of you with his extra small weiner) sexual intercourse with the floor, and sound like it with all the grunting, but I assure you, there is nothing sexual about it. Or sexy for that matter. Now, go ahead and start dragging yourself across the room. *Points from one end of room to the other* 

Grasshopper Amanda: What?! I don’t.... I cannot... How do I even respond to that?! Sexual grunting without it being sexual?! O.O *visions on Easy A, where Emma Stone and the gay guy, you know who I am talking about, are having fake sex.*... *Shakes head* I cannot believe I am doing this. *starts dragging my ass across the room.*

Master Ana: Very good! You’re doing well! *records Amanda’ dragging her ass across the room on mobile phone* for future classes of course xD 

STEP 3: Break Time

Master Ana: Remember to take 2 minute breaks in between each foot that you’ve managed to drag yourself. This will allow you to catch your much needed breath and continue to work on your humming, or in your case young grasshopper, your Lady Gaga humming. Understand?

Grasshopper Amanda: Now you tell me! I, apparently, was a little enthusiastic. I will have to dumb down my enthusiasm in order to better drag my ass across the floor. Sorry, Master Ana. 

Master Ana: Apology accepted. *pats Grasshopper Amanda’s back* there, there. Let’s move on, shall we?

Grasshopper Amanda: *nods head* Yes, I think we shall.

STEP 4: Re-energize

Master Ana: Congratulations! You’ve finally made it to your beloved computer. Now before you go grabbing your shotgun and shooting the hell out of the monitor for being too far to reach, go ahead and reward yourself with a 30 minute nap from all that exertion! 

If the hubby walks by and asks if you need help up off the ground, give him a dirty look and tell him in your best caveman impression... “NO! I am WOMAN! *points to self* I am STRONG! *flex arms*...*switch back to sweet wife voice* wait, honey, can you bring me a cup of coffee, please?” then continue to sit and bask in your re-energizing phase as your husband looks at you like you’re dressed in a meat dress. 

Grasshopper Amanda: Pssh. All I have to do is start taking clothes off in order to get whatever I need. *winks* It is a well known secret to woman domination. *Smiles sweetly at husband and takes off shirt* Can you get me a glass of water, love? See how fast he moves for me?! Now time for that nap. *rests head on the floor* Wish I would have brought a pillow with me. *sigh*

Master Ana: *raises eyebrow* well, then. You sha’ll be teaching your own Grasshopper 101 classes yourself. *nods head and mutters to self* yes, indeed, very soon. *jots down this tidbit of information*

Grasshopper Amanda: *pops head up and grins* You have no idea, young one. Men want only two things. 1. Sex 2. Food most likely in that order, but that’s for another time. *winks* Where were we?

Master Ana: Lol, sex and food, eh? I can do fuck no...they have hands and know where the kitchen is *rolls eyes* yes, we were moving on to the last and final step.

STEP 5: Forget & Repeat

Master Ana: Now, that you’ve mastered steps 1 - 4, you will hear your children calling you from a distance...bringing you out of your quick nap. You come immediately to attention and forget all about your troubles of dragging thy ass to your computer screen. But, before you leave your computers side, you turn your head and look squarely into the towers eyes (because the tower is laughing deviously at you for exerting yourself) and say in a harsh whisper ‘this isn’t over, computer. I sha’ll conquer you and download to my hearts content” *insert Cruella DeVille laugh here* then put on your mommy smile and trot over to your children forgetting all about your quest to drag thyself to the computer until you have to repeat all these steps when the kids are down for a nap. 

Grasshopper Amanda: Oddly enough, this does tend to happen. Damn you, computer! *waves fist at computer screen* It does mock me and my efforts. Let’s not forget about how slow these things are. Why just the other day... Oh, I was already moving on to forget. lol 

Master Ana: Lol. Yes, we will have a ranting session on our computer in our next class. *helps Amanda off the ground and pulls out a ribbon* This here, this is your ribbon for completing the course. *mysterious applause comes from speakers on computer followed by evil laughter*  o.O *hands Amanda the ribbon* Congratulations! And good luck with your future dragging of thy ass to the computer. Remember, you are the master, the computer is a chump waiting to get it’s ass kicked or thrown out the window. *evil laughter coming from computer dies and goes silent*

Grasshopper Amanda: *greedily grabs ribbon from Master Ana.* I would like to take this time to thank my family for their support and my dogs for not vomiting on the floor. Lastly, thank you Master Ana, for enabling me to be the best at dragging my ass to the computer. My blog will love you and my computer shall dread me. *takes a bow*

Master Ana: You’re welcome :) And remember to hum ;) 

Thank you all for joining us for Grasshopper Lessons 101. This lesson was brought to you by, Beach Bum Reads & The Book Slayer. Til’ next time! 

Master Ana: *Walks away humming Lady Gaga’s Bad Romance* Oh, hell. 

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Blog Tour: Review: A Beautiful Lie by T.E. Sivec

Thanks for stopping by! This tour is brought to you by Madison of Madison Says.

Don't forget to check out the other blogs participating in this tour HERE.

*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review*

A Beautiful Lie
(Book #1 in the Playing with Fire series)
Amazon | Goodreads | BN
Author: T.E. Sivec
Publisher: Self published (January 2, 2013)
Genre: Romantic Suspense, 388 pages

He saw her first, but his friend made the move.

She settled for the safer choice, but her heart knew the truth.

They love, they crave, they lie.

Garrett McCarthy, Annabelle Parker, and Milo Roberts were as close as friends could get. They shared in each other's joy during graduations, promotions, and engagements. They consoled one another through heartache and loss.

When one of the friend's life is tragically cut short, it's up to the two left behind to pick up the pieces and find out the truth - no matter the cost. As they slowly start to uncover the nature of his deception, and the very powerful people behind it, they begin to question everyone and everything, even themselves.

Everyone has secrets - some do it for love while others do it for power. Those secrets can change perceptions, alter reality and sometimes destroy lives.

What do you do when you find out your whole life has been a lie?

Ahhh. What to say, what to say. This is definitely different from Tara's previous works. BUT, not totally different. You can still feel the comedy pulling through, especially with some of the characters in this book. And the easy flow of the story line as well. You've got two best friends with feelings for each other, but who are freaking oblivious to it. You've also got a shit load of secrets that make the book all that more interesting and keeps you on the edge and wanting to know what the hell is going to happen next. Yeah, I had to stop reading a few times and look at my screen with a "What-The-Fuck-Was-That" kinda face, which then turned into "Unholy-Shit-That-Was-Not-Foreseen-In-My-Crystal-Ball" kinda face. And then re-reading said surprising part of the book and getting my mind blown again and again...and again. Mhm. Like I said, shit load of secrets. 

The attraction between Parker (Annabelle) & McCarthy (Garret.. *takes a minute to swoon over this character and his name*)  is definitely there, if hiding under a heavy ass blanket and is suffering from suffocation, just wanting to jump out and bring these two together so they can stop THINKING about... 
  • kissing
  • hard ons
  • rolling around in the bed
  • doing her from behind
  • joining the mile high club
  • on the table
  • every. damn. where.

There were a few things I both liked and disliked. Let's start with the dislikes, shall we? I'll admit, it took a while to get into this book. After the first couple of pages I had to put it down. Then after a bit of pushing through, I'd grown to get more into the story. There was a bit of whiplash, the POV jumps from character to character, which was one of the downers for me. On to likes... I really liked the story as a whole. Being a Romantic Suspense, I thought the romance and the suspense tied together really well. There was a lot of suspense and just as much romance, though, the romance was starting to scare me, in a "Oh-My-Gosh-Stop-Thinking-About-Doing-Her-From-Behind-And-Do-Her-Already" kinda way. So, it was a really slow-ish kind of build up, unless you release some of that sexual tension with all the naughty thoughts running through their heads lol. The whole government aspect of it added a bit of that suspense, and of course all the asskicking weapons they got to haul around too. 

Overall, I thought the book was pretty good and flowed really well, it just took a while for me to get into it. It was good, but I wasn't jumping up an down with joy. Would I recommend this book? Yepp, go ahead and grab yourself a copy and dive into this world of secrets and suspense. T.E. Sivec gives you something new to look forward to, aside from her romantic comedies, and yepp all you series lovers out there, this bad boy is book numero uno in the Playing with Fire series. 


T.E. Sivec is the pen name for Tara Sivec. Under T.E. Sivec, she delves into a more serious genre that is her absolute favorite to read - romantic suspense.  She loves reading a book and feeling her heart speed up with anticipation and wanted to be able to give that feeling to her fans.
T.E. lives in Ohio with her husband and two children, living the dream of being a full-time writer.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Feature & Follow #13

Feature & Follow is a weekly meme hosted by, Parajunkee and Alison Can Read. Each week, each host will have their own Feature Blog which allows them to show off more new blogs! It is a fun way to keep in touch with fellow bloggers, meet new bloggers and gain new followers.

This Weeks Question Is:
If you could choose one supernatural being/creature to really exists what would it be and why?
WEREWOLVES! I do love my vamps, but... werewolves. YES! GRRRR. lol. I love their whole Alpha vibe and how they pretty much demand respect. I'm all for it! ^_^ Plus, I can get down with the whole pack thing.

If you're a new follower let me know and leave a link back to your blog so I can follow you back!

Chattin' It Up + Giveaway with Jessica Scott

Ana: Welcome to Beach Bum Reads! I’m glad you can join me today :)
JScott: Thanks so much for having me today! 

Ana: We’re going to start off with some basics…Can you tell us a little about yourself? 
JScott: Um, you mean other than I’m slightly insane? I’m your average working mom, trying to balance life, a job, kids, pets and not burning dinner. Let’s be honest, I burn dinner. A lot. 

Ana: lol. you and me both xD -- What was the first book that got you into reading? 
JScott: Oh wow. Honestly, I don’t ever remember not knowing how to read and I’ve always been a book worm. I thought it was really cool that my hometown library highlighted a print copy of my book To Iraq & Back because I spent so much time there as a teenager. 

Ana: What/who inspired you to become a writer?
JScott: Wow, you know I started writing fanfiction based on Anne McCaffrey’s Pern series when I was a kid. I’ve always gotten these good idea but never really wrote much beyond a few hundred words. Then in 2007, I started writing and actually finished a book (that shall never, ever be published but hey, it was a learning process). And I’ve never stopped writing since. 

Ana: Is there anything you want to say to aspiring writers? 
JScott: Learn your craft. Read. Don’t be so anxious for publication because while it’s a goal, it should not be why you write. Write because you love it, because you can’t not write. Don’t write for the money (ha!) or the fame (ha ha!). Write because it’s what you are, you know? 

Ana: *nodding head in agreement* -- Inquiring minds want to know…okay, okay, my little brother is standing over my shoulder and he’s in AJROTC and he is asking…
Lil Bro: What rank are you?
JScott: I’m a captain stationed at Fort Hood. 

Ana:  Being active in the military, how do you manage to compose a novel?
JScott: I’ve still got my me time, despite being a soldier. Writing is how I relax and it helps me look at things from a different perspective. Sometimes when something truly bizarre happens, I think that’s going in a book some day. It helps get me through, you know? 

Ana: Your books are military based that have some pretty steamy bits and pieces in it, do the soldiers get kinky down at base? 
JScott: Um, young, single and generally fit. I’ll let you decide, lol!

Ana: LOL! Good answer! -- Your characters are going through some tough battles as well as fighting a battle in your books, how hard was it to pull all these different stories together and make them work in a book?
JScott: It was very tough to get my books demilitarized for the average non military reader. I discovered very early on that words that are part of my every day lexicon confuse civilians. So while I might thing TOC, I have to write out and have my characters say tactical operations cell. There’s just no other way to avoid confusion. 

Ana: Are you currently working on anything? Care to share some tidbits (or…a lot of tidbits lol)?
JScott: I’m finishing up Laura & Trent’s book, the much awaited conclusion to the story started in BECAUSE OF YOU and I’m also finishing up the final touches on Reza’s story called COME HOME TO ME. After that, I’ve got a couple other things in the pot but those are secret. 

Ana: Okay, last question… and I’ve gotta ask… are you a beach bum? 
JScott: There is nothing better than a day at the beach! Seriously, I love watching my kids dig in the sand and just relax away from the internet and cell phones. It’s really great to unplug and just unwind. 

Ana: Thanks for stopping by! It was a pleasure having you here today :)
JScott: Thanks for the great interview! 

Think Fast

Water or Soda?
JScott: Water

Coffee or Tea?
JScott: Coffee

Zombies or Vampires?
JScott: Vampires

Rap or Rock?
JScott: Rock

Day or Night?
JScott: Night

Salad or Burger? 
JScott: Burger

Concluding our little chat, Jessica has offered to do a giveaway! *happy dancing here, people* .... are you happy dancing? GOOD! What's up for grabs you ask? o.O ALL THREE of Jessica Scott's books! *more happy dancing* Yepp, that's right. You get books 1 & 2 in the Coming Home series AND Jessica Scott's nonfiction novel To Iraq & Back

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Jessica Scott is a career army officer, mother of two daughters, three cats and three dogs, wife to a career NCO and wrangler of all things stuffed and fluffy. She is a terrible cook and even worse housekeeper, but she's a pretty good shot with her assigned weapon and someone liked some of the stuff she wrote. Somehow, her children are pretty well adjusted and her husband still loves her, despite burned water and a messy house.

Oprah has called her. True story.

Her debut novel BECAUSE OF YOU launched Loveswept, the first Random House digital imprint.

She's written for the New York Times At War Blog, PBS Point of View Regarding War, and IAVA. She deployed to Iraq in 2009 as part of OIF/New Dawn and is currently a company commander stationed at Fort Hood.

Most recently, she's been featured as one of Esquire Magazine's Americans of the Year for 2012.

Review: Until There Was You by Jessica Scott

Until There Was You 
(Book #2 in the Coming Home series)
Amazon | Goodreads | BN
Author: Jessica Scott
Publisher: Loveswept (December 8, 2012)
Genre: Military Romance, Adult, 253 pages

A by-the-book captain with a West Point background, Evan Loehr refuses to mix business with pleasure—except for an unguarded instance years ago when he succumbed to the deep sensuality of redheaded beauty Claire Montoya. Since that brief lapse in judgment, Evan has been at odds with her. But when he is asked to train a combat team alongside Claire, battle-hardened Evan is in for the fight of his life.

Strong, gutsy, and loyal, Captain Claire Montoya has worked hard to achieve her high military rank. In Evan Loehr, Claire sees a spoiled commander who puts the rules before everything else—including his people. Army orders force them together and Claire soon discovers that there is more to Evan than meets the eye. He too has dark secrets and deep longings. For all their differences, Evan and Claire share two crucial passions: their country and each other.

Until There Was You is pretty good book. You've got Captain Claire Montoya who is set in her ways, has no problem breaking the rules, and is loyal to a fault. Then on the other hand you have Commander Evan Loehr who is on the straight and narrow and follows all the rules to a T. No ifs ands or buts about it with this hawt hunk of a man. So of course the two clash and disagree, but that doesn't stop the building attraction that they have towards each other. 

Evan and Claire both have there issues. Both being held back by their pasts, which is causing them pull away from what they so obviously are craving...each other. Until There Was You was definitely a tease throughout most of the book, but hey, if you love a tease, then go on right ahead. I for one wanted them to stop kissing and then fighting right after. But, everything tied in so well that the actual heat factor for this book was not so bad. There was definitely a build up with these two, which made reading through the entire book that much more interesting. 

One of the main things that I like about this book, is that there is more than just a battle to prepare for. You have these soldiers, who are willing to lay down their lives for their country and on top of that, they are battling their own demons. And as you continue to read, those demons start making themselves known. You learn the reason behind Claire's loyalty and why Evan is nick named Captain America. These demons making the stories of these characters hard to read at times. Guilt, being one of those main demons. Eating at you until you finally cave into it. But you have the other characters who can see right through that and are slowly breaking through these demon filled walls. But, I won't go into more detail about that. PICK UP THE BOOK :) 

Jessica Scott brings the military life to you in this book, and of course makes all those big military words easier to bare. (Thank goodness) Fighting a war is one thing, but fighting your past is another. Put those two together and throw in some much needed alone time between two characters and you've got yourself a great book. Would I recommend this book? Definitely. Love yourself a good romance book based around the military? Then pick up Until There Was You. This is actually the second book in Jessica Scott's Coming Home series. This book can be read as a stand alone.


Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Chattin' It Up + Giveaway with Stephen Bradlee

Ana: Welcome to Beach Bum Reads! I’m glad you can join me today :)
SBradlee: Ana, thank you so much for inviting me. I really appreciate it. 

Ana: We’re going to start off with some basics…Can you tell us a little about yourself?
SBradlee: I guess as a writer I am a bit unique. Although I have been writing for most of my life, outside of magazine articles, I have never published under my own name, including Falling In Love. I am using a pen name partly to help hide Sherry’s identity. Besides writing, I love—surprise, surprise—reading, as well as sports, traveling and mostly enjoying life with my wife, our daughter and our dog.

Ana: What was the first book that got you into reading? 
SBradlee:  Strangely enough, it was my first Hardy Boys mystery when I was really young. I ended up reading the entire series in a very short time. Those books first taught me about plotting because every chapter ended with a cliffhanger, and that was really the beginning of learning to write suspense.  

Ana: What/who inspired you to become a writer?
SBradlee:  I’ve wanted to be a writer for as long as I can remember. I wrote my first book when I was four before I had learned any written words.  It was really a comic book about my cat and I hunting for a mouse and when we found one, I wouldn’t let her kill it.  It was based on a true story.  

Ana: Is there anything you want to say to aspiring writers? 
SBradlee: I guess two things. One is to write the book that you would love to read. If you write it well hopefully enough readers will also love it enough to make you relatively successful. If not, you know that you will always have one very loyal fan.  Secondly, believe in your ability to create something special. Writing can be so difficult and writers can be so insecure about their work and so afraid of exposing their most intimate thoughts and feelings that the writing itself can become intimidating. You have to believe that in the end it will not only be worth it but that you will give something to the world that no one else can. 

Ana: I absolutely loved Falling In Love, but let’s pretend I have no idea what it’s about, can you tell us a little bit about it?
SBradlee:  Well, the book is based on the true story of a young women’s battle to overcome sexual addiction.  I didn’t really want to call it Falling In Love because to me the title shouts “romantic comedy.” But there is a line in the book about her falling in love every weekend, and Sherry’s life really was a series of falling in love. And falling. And falling. In the end, she has to do the hardest thing for her, to find self-love. 

Ana: Falling In Love is a based on a true story, is it easier or harder to write a story that stems from someone’s life?
SBradlee:  I think it is probably easier because the true story is at least some version of a first draft. But then you have to be true to that story and to the person it is about and that can become very difficult.

Ana: What was the hardest part about writing Falling In Love?
SBradlee:  Sherry wanted to tell her story but she also wanted to remain anonymous.  So I had to change some of the events in the book but still keep the emotional impact of the original events.  That was much harder than I had imagined it would be.  

Ana: At the end of Falling In Love there’s a hint at a sequel, is there another book in the works for Sherry?
SBradlee:  I would love to do a sequel to Falling In Love but it is really up to Sherry. I’m like a lot of readers of the book. I’d love to know what happens next.

Ana: Your bio says you’ve worked as a script doctor, can we probe a bit and find out which scripts you’ve worked on? 
SBradlee:  I’m sorry Ana, but I don’t think I can say anything. For most of the films, contractually, I’m not allowed to say that I worked on them. Under my real name there are rumors about what films I’ve worked on and most of the rumors are true. But because I’m writing under a pen name I am hesitant to mention anything that might reveal my identity. I know this is a lousy answer and I apologize for that.

Ana: Okay, last question… and I’ve gotta ask… are you a beach bum? 
SBradlee: Absolutely! I’d love to spend every day at the beach with an umbrella drink in one hand and a book in the other. 

Ana: Thanks for stopping by! It was a pleasure having you here today :)
SBradlee: The pleasure is all mine. Thank you so much.

Think Fast:

Water or Soda?  
SBradlee: Soda

Coffee or Tea?
SBradlee: Coffee

Zombies or Vampires?
SBradlee: Vampires

Rap or Rock?
SBradlee: Rock

Day or Night?
SBradlee: Night

Salad or Burger? 
SBradlee: Burger

Concluding our chat Stephen is giving away an eBook copy of Falling In Love. But WAIT, there's more! For every 50 likes on Amazon, Stephen is going to be giving away another eBook copy of Falling In Love. Yepp, more chances to win this amazing book and a chance for you to read Sherry's story. There are currently 8 likes on Amazon, so we will be starting there.

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Stephen Bradlee is the pen name for a Hollywood film executive. He has ghostwritten celebrity autobiographies and has worked as a script doctor. He is married and lives with his wife, their daughter and their dog.

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