Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Book Review ~ Jesus Jackson by James Ryan Daley

Jesus Jackson
by James Ryan Daley


Synopsis
Jonathan Stiles is a 14 year-old atheist who is coping with his first day of ninth grade at the fervently religious St. Soren's Academy when his idolized older brother Ryan is found dead at the bottom of a ravine behind the school. As his world crumbles, Jonathan meets an eccentric stranger who bears an uncanny resemblance to Jesus Christ (except for his white linen leisure suit and sparkling gold chains). Jesus Jackson, as he calls himself, offers to provide faith to Jonathan. He also suggests that Ryan s death may not have been an accident after all. Jonathan teams up with Henry, his new best friend at St. Soren s, to investigate. The two boys find footprints leading to the ravine that match Ryan s sneakers. They are assisted by Ryan s grieving girlfriend, Tristan, who also thinks the accident theory is bunk. The police, however, will not listen. But Jonathan knows something the police do not know: Shortly before his death, Ryan was doing cocaine with fellow footballer and number one suspect Alistair not far from the ravine where his body was found. An inspired Jonathan battles sanctimonious school psychologists, overzealous administrators, and a cavalry of Christian classmates on his quest to discover the truth about Ryan's death and about god, high school, and the meaning of life, while he's at it. But he keeps getting distracted by Cassie Alistair s quirky younger sister who holds the keys to the answers Jonathan is searching for, but who also makes him wonder if he should be searching for them at all."

Click HERE to add to Goodreads


Book Trailer
My Thoughts
Jonathan Stiles is your typical 14 year old boy who idolized his older brother, Ryan.  Growing up, Ryan convinced Jonathan that there is no god and that all religion was false.  As Jonathan starts his first day of school as a freshman, Ryan is found dead at the bottom of a ravine behind the school.  Jonathan is convinced that it's murder and the murderer is none other than the star of the football team, Alistair.

That day, Jonathan meets up with Jesus.  Jesus Jackson that is.  Jesus Jackson has an uncanny resemblance to Jesus Christ except he dresses like he came straight from the 1970's - white leisure suit and all.  As Jesus learns that Jonathan is without faith in anything, he offers up his services by providing what Jonathan needs - restoring his faith. 

And this is what this story is about (at least what I got out of it), finding faith to believe in something you can't see or touch.  Just that feeling that there is something greater out there and we just have to believe - in something. 

I think my most favorite quote of the book came from the part where Jesus tricked Jonathan into falling several feet from the bleachers.  Although he came out of the incident unhurt, he asked Jesus what would have happened if he had gotten hurt.  Jesus replied,

".....it was worth a shot.  That taking a leap of faith is always worth a shot.  After all, whether you land on your feet or fall on your face, at least you'll know what's on the other side.  At least you'll know the truth."

Jesus Jackson was an absolute delight to read.  The writing is flawless and the story line flowed smoothly.  The only thing I did not like is the ending seemed a bit rushed or perhaps I just didn't want the story to end.  Either way, this was a touching and meaningful story that will make the reader think outside the box and provide some entertainment along the way.  Give this one a shot...you won't be disappointed.

A special thanks to Poisoned Pen Press for providing me with an Uncorrected Proof of Jesus Jackson in exchange for an honest review.

My rating:  4 out of 5 stars



About the Author
Hi. I'm James. I’m a writer, editor, and designer of various paper-based and digital things. Since finishing my MFA at the Vermont College of Fine Arts in 2004, I’ve been spending most of my time teaching writing to college students, creating websites about video games, and writing mystery novels about pensive young ne’erdowells. When I’m not obsessively poring over pixels and pronouns, I can usually be found arguing with strangers on the Internet or seeking out adventure with my indomitable wife and two indefatigable daughters.

Author Links


Purchase Links
Amazon * Barnes & Noble

Follow on Bloglovin

Book Blitz & Giveaway ~ Midnight Kiss: Four New Adult Paranormal Romances by Alyssa Rose Ivy, Jennifer Snyder, Juliana Haygert, Sarra Cannon


Midnight Kiss: Four New Adult Paranormal Romances
by Alyssa Rose Ivy, Jennifer Snyder, Juliana Haygert, Sarra Cannon
Publication date: October 1st 2014


Synopsis
This Halloween, prepare to be haunted by a kiss…
Midnight Kiss is a limited edition collection of four BRAND NEW, NEVER RELEASED novellas, all set in New Orleans on Halloween night.

AFTER MIDNIGHT by Sarra Cannon
From the outside, Becca Goldberg looks like any normal freshman girl at Tulane, but she’s been keeping a terrible secret. She’s really Allison Moore—a young witch from Peachville hiding out from an evil coven of witches known as the Order of Shadows. She thinks she is safe until an unexpected accident occurs. Now, she only has until midnight on Halloween until her identity is discovered.
She must turn to the hottest, most elusive guy on campus for help. Will he help save her? Or will her life come crashing down around her after midnight?

THE MIDNIGHT TEST by Juliana Haygert
Being the weakest witch of her generation, nineteen-year-old Hazel is convinced she’s supposed to live a normal, human life—except for the occasional ghost hunting. When Hazel moves to New Orleans, the most powerful witch coven in the world grants her a chance to join them, but only if she passes a dangerous test on Halloween night. Everything is going fine until mysterious Sean steps in Hazel’s way, putting her entire test at risk.
Will she be able to ace the test and keep them both alive at the same time?

SEDUCTION’S KISS by Alyssa Rose Ivy
Never agree to a road trip to New Orleans with your roommate. At least not when your roommate is dragging you along while she reconnects with an ex boyfriend. Possible consequences of failing to take my advice:
1) Unknowingly going out with a vampire stripper.
2) Getting kidnapped by said vampire’s nest mates.
3) Falling head over heels for your winged hero.
Believe it or not number 3 is the worst one, especially when no one believes you that he exists.

KISS OF AWAKENING by Jennifer Snyder
With one kiss, everything will change…
When a mysterious letter arrives from her estranged mother, twenty-one year old Kenna Blake and her best friend, Bree, make a trip to New Orleans hoping for a little Halloween fun and to get away. The mystifying Crescent City has something else in store for her though.
Cryptic messages, a hot tour guide, and a new sense Kenna can’t seem to explain are just the beginning of this eye opening trip. Will Kenna accept what awakens with in her or will she crumble under its reality?

Click HERE to add to Goodreads

Click HERE to read my review



Purchase Links

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Enjoy some excerpts....
AFTER MIDNIGTH by Sarra Cannon

My mouth hung open and I shook my head, unable to believe that John Pierce—the guy who had practically gone out of his way to make me feel like an idiot—was now the only thing standing between me and a fate worse than death. I had no idea what to say.
“Are you going to stand out there all night waiting for whoever’s looking for you? Or are you going to come inside where it’s safe?”
“Is it?” I asked, my voice trembling.
“What? Safe?” His eyes twinkled in the dim lighting. “You’re the one who came to me for help, remember?”
I forced my mouth closed and nodded. John stepped aside and let me pass.
The foyer was all high ceilings and polished wood floors. A crystal chandelier hung down from the top and a large sweeping staircase rose toward the second floor. Huge mirrors framed in gold adorned the walls, along with massive paintings that probably each cost more than a year's tuition at Tulane.
People in long, flowing gowns and capes and masks floated through the hallway like ghosts. None of the overhead lights were on, but candlelight flickered everywhere I looked.
The house was warm and dark and the moment I crossed the threshold, a strange heat blossomed in my belly.
I didn't know if it was the atmosphere of the party or the fact that I was standing uncomfortably close to a half-naked god, but I found it difficult to breathe. I couldn't take my eyes off him. He looked different in this setting. Better, if that was even possible. And to finally get a glimpse of the chiseled abs I'd known were hiding beneath his shirt? I couldn't decide if I'd just walked in to heaven or hell.

THE MIDNIGHT TEST by Juliana Haygert
     
A rush of dread and concern fleeted through me. I wanted to approach him, but after last evening, I wasn’t so sure I should. I had thought about him a lot last night. About how disturbed and lost he was, and how I really wanted to help him. Which was crazy. Why was I torturing myself like that?
Convinced I would regret my decision, I sat on the bench and scooted closer to him, but not too close.
Sean lifted his head, leaned back into the bench, and stared at me with wide eyes. “What are you doing here?” The bruises on his face were now black.
“I could ask you the same thing,” I said, trying to sound casual. “You don’t look like the praying type.”
One corner of his lips quirked up—my heart sped up—and his gaze traveled over me. “With that hair, piercing, tattoo, and all, I would think the same of you.”
I shrugged. “What? Just because my style is a little different, I’m supposed to be a faithless bad girl? A troublemaker?”
Sean returned his eyes to mine. “Well, I like your style.”
I felt a little blush creeping in my cheeks. As if realizing he had said something he shouldn’t, he turned his gaze to the altar.
Damn it. The guy couldn’t just say things like that and then leave me hanging. And why the hell was I thinking about that? The guy was damaged, broken, depressed. And he was rude to me yesterday. As much as I wanted, flirting with him was not right. Not until I helped him. Because I did want to help him. In fact, I wanted to tell him I was going to the mansion tomorrow night, and I would avenge his sister and his best friend. Hopefully, knowing they were resting in peace, Sean would be able to move on.

SEDUCTION’S KISS by Alyssa Rose Ivy

“Come now, I assure you we’re going to get to know each other very well.” He licked his lips.
“No, we’re not.” I looked him straight in the eye. That’s when I noticed he had this same weird colored ring in his eyes that Duncan had. I looked at the other men, they had the same thing. Freaky.
“We are. And right now you’re going to put your wrists together so I can bind them.”
“Excuse me?”
“You heard me.”
“Why would I do that?” I stepped back. That turned out to be a mistake as I walked right into Duncan’s chest.
“Because you’d rather I didn’t kill your friend.”
I noticed he said friend in singular. Perceptive. Not that I wanted anything to happen to the guys.
“Please, just let us go. Is it money you want? I don’t have much, but I’ll give you what I have.”
Jeryl laughed. “Money? You think we want money from you?” He stepped closer just as Duncan wrapped his arms around me from behind. “We want something more primal from you.” He held his hand over my neck like he was going to choke me “Much more primal.”
“Don’t touch her!” Shaun yelled.
Jeryl laughed. “Showing concern for the girl who rebuffed you? Humans are so interesting.”
“Like you’re not human?” Chad asked.
“No. We’re not.”
In a flash, one of the guys holding Reyna leaned her head back and rested his long sharp teeth on her neck. Fangs. The guy had fangs.
Jeryl laughed at my obvious fear. “Hold your hands out behind your back, or he bites.”

KISS OF AWAKENING by Jennifer Snyder

Pulsating red lights lit the darkness behind my eyelids, and I opened them to see what it was. Delvin’s aura was throbbing. Its deep, dark red acting as a strobe light in sync with the beat of my heart—or maybe that was his. Moving my hand through his hair, I noticed the ring on my finger was a bright, glowing red as well.
A low sound emanated from Delvin as the heat in my mouth cooled to a sweetness unlike anything I’d ever experienced before. The red of his aura speckled with flecks of gray, and the rhythm Delvin had set for us slowed.
While my mind seemed to gather all of this, I couldn’t process any of it because something was happening to me. My insides were burning and cooling as though I was suffering from an insane bout of hot flashes. Every trace of the tequila I had consumed evaporated from my mind and body until I was completely sober.
Delvin’s hands fell to his sides. The edges of my dress he’d held fell to my feet in a swooshing motion. He grew ridged in his stance. While his lips had long ago paused in their movement against mine, I couldn’t pull back. I couldn’t stop whatever was happening. The taste was amazing, and the rush I was getting—an incredible high I had never felt before—rocketed me higher. Alcohol couldn’t touch this feeling, nothing could.

Meet the Authors

Sarra Cannon:
Sarra Cannon writes contemporary and paranormal fiction with both teen and college age characters. Her novels often stem from her own experiences growing up in the small town of Hawkinsville, Georgia, where she learned that being popular always comes at a price and relationships are rarely as simple as they seem.

Her best selling Young Adult paranormal series, Peachville High Demons, has sold over 140,000 copies and been featured on Amazon's Top 100 eBooks for Children & Teens. The first book in the series, Beautiful Demons, will be adapted into a graphic novel by Sea Lion Books later this year, and a spin-off series will begin in 2014.

She is a devoted (obsessed) fan of Hello Kitty and has an extensive collection that decorates her desk as she writes. She currently lives in South Carolina with her amazingly supportive husband and her adorable son.


Juliana Haygert
While Juliana Haygert dreams of being Wonder Woman, Buffy, or a blood elf shadow priest, she settles for the less exciting--but equally gratifying--life of a wife, mother, and author. Thousands of miles away from her former home in Brazil, she now resides in Connecticut and spends her days writing about kick-ass heroines and the heroes who drive them crazy.

Co-founder and contributor at NA Alley (www.naalley.com)

Subscribe to Juliana's newsletter to stay up-to-date with new releases: http://eepurl.com/CKsmX



Alyssa Rose Ivy
Alyssa Rose Ivy is a bestselling New Adult and Young Adult author who loves to weave stories with romance and humor. Although raised in the New York area, she fell in love with the South after moving to New Orleans for college. After surviving law school and earning her masters in library science, she turned back to her creative side and decided to write. She lives in North Carolina with her husband and two young children, and she can usually be found with a cup of coffee in her hand.


Jennifer Snyder
Jennifer Snyder lives in North Carolina were she spends most of her time writing new adult and young adult fiction, reading, and struggling to stay on top of housework. She is a tea lover with an obsession for Post-it notes and smooth writing pens. Jennifer lives with her husband and two children, who endure listening to songs that spur inspiration on repeat and tolerate her love for all paranormal, teenage-targeted TV shows.

Find out more about her latest novel by visiting her website:
jennifersnyderbooks.com






Follow on Bloglovin

Book Review ~ Midnight Kiss: Four New Adult Paranormal Romances by Sarra Cannon, Juliana Haygert, Alyssa Rose Ivy, Jennifer Snyder

Midnight Kiss: Four New Adult Paranormal Romances
by 
Sarra Cannon, Juliana Haygert, 
Alyssa Rose Ivy, Jennifer Snyder



This Halloween, prepare to be haunted by a kiss…

Midnight Kiss is a limited edition collection of four BRAND NEW, NEVER RELEASED novellas, all set in New Orleans on Halloween night.




AFTER MIDNIGHT 
by Sarra Cannon

 Synopsis
From the outside, Becca Goldberg looks like any normal freshman girl at Tulane, but she’s been keeping a terrible secret. She’s really Allison Moore—a young witch from Peachville hiding out from an evil coven of witches known as the Order of Shadows. She thinks she is safe until an unexpected accident occurs. Now, she only has until midnight on Halloween until her identity is discovered.

She must turn to the hottest, most elusive guy on campus for help. Will he help save her? Or will her life come crashing down around her after midnight?


My thoughts on After Midnight
Imagine that you have to live your life always looking over your shoulder afraid that the Order of Shadows will find you and take you away.  Well, this is Allison’s life.  Hiding out in New Orleans, all she wants to do is blend in and be normal, well, as normal as a witch can get.  She has a crush on a hot guy, John Pierce, but he rarely gives her the time of day.  Her life gets a bit hectic though when the potion she desperately needs each month to keep her ‘hidden’ literally falls out of her hands. It then becomes a race against time to find a way to hide from the Order.  Little does she know that her help lies in the hands of John, but can they find what they need before the clock strikes midnight? 

After Midnight was a great start to this box set.  Full of twists and turns and a little New Orleans magic, this one was a delight to read.  It was short and sweet and left me wanting more.  There wasn’t a lot of romance with this one, but it was just the right amount of spookiness to set the mood for Halloween.  I really want to see more of Allison and John and really hope they make another appearance in a future novel.  Ms. Cannon is a new author for me, but I am definitely adding her books to my TBR list. 



THE MIDNIGHT TEST 
by Juliana Haygert

Synopsis
Being the weakest witch of her generation, nineteen-year-old Hazel is convinced she’s supposed to live a normal, human life—except for the occasional ghost hunting. When Hazel moves to New Orleans, the most powerful witch coven in the world grants her a chance to join them, but only if she passes a dangerous test on Halloween night. Everything is going fine until mysterious Sean steps in Hazel’s way, putting her entire test at risk.

Will she be able to ace the test and keep them both alive at the same time?


My thoughts on The Midnight Test
For Hazel, her dream of joining the White Sisterhood coven is put to the test when she is tasked the seemingly impossible in order to prove herself to the coven.  The situation becomes even more complicated when sexy but mysterious Sean enters the scene. 

The thing I love about box sets is that you get to discover new authors and in this case, fall in love with their work.  The Midnight Test had all of the ingredients needed for a spectacular story.  Witches, Ghosts and a blooming romance make this story one that kept me turning each page wanting to know more. It was a fast-paced and very intriguing story that kept me captivated throughout.   Loved it!




SEDUCTION’S KISS 
by Alyssa Rose Ivy

Synopsis
Never agree to a road trip to New Orleans with your roommate. At least not when your roommate is dragging you along while she reconnects with an ex boyfriend. Possible consequences of failing to take my advice:

1) Unknowingly going out with a vampire stripper.
2) Getting kidnapped by said vampire’s nest mates.
3) Falling head over heels for your winged hero.

Believe it or not number 3 is the worst one, especially when no one believes you that he exists.


My thoughts on Seduction's Kiss
A weekend trip with her best friend gets messy as Daisy gets abducted by a nasty group of vampires.  Lucky for her, a winged hero sweeps in and saves the day. 

Seduction’s Kiss was really different from the first two books in this box set.  I have not read any of The Crescent Chronicles yet, so I am not familiar with the back story on Owen, but after reading this short and sweet novella, I will most certainly check out the series. This one was full of some humorous and sarcastic dialogue which was quite a refreshing take on your typical paranormal romance.



KISS OF AWAKENING 
by Jennifer Snyder

Synopsis
With one kiss, everything will change…

When a mysterious letter arrives from her estranged mother, twenty-one year old Kenna Blake and her best friend, Bree, make a trip to New Orleans hoping for a little Halloween fun and to get away. The mystifying Crescent City has something else in store for her though.

Cryptic messages, a hot tour guide, and a new sense Kenna can’t seem to explain are just the beginning of this eye opening trip. Will Kenna accept what awakens with in her or will she crumble under its reality?

My thoughts on Kiss of Awakening
Kenna’s mother who has been absent for most of her life except for the occasional gift, delivers a cryptic message that Kenna just can’t ignore.  
“The time has come, my sweet girl, for you to find out who you really are.  The Kiss of Awakening is upon you.” 

Along with this message is a plan ticket to New Orleans.  The trip falls on Halloween weekend, so Kenna and her BFF, Bree, decide to make it a girl’s weekend.  Who wouldn't want to go to New Orleans for Halloween…right?  Once there, they meet up with a super-hot bartender, Delvin, and the three are inseparable as Delvin shows the girls what the Crescent City has to offer.  One stop that Kenna must make is to the Midnight Cauldron where she is to get her gift from her mother.  This gift however is one that Kenna only wishes she could return - for this gift will change her life forever. 

Kiss of Awakening was amazing!  Jennifer Snyder is a wonderful story teller, and her talent shines through in this novella.  With vivid descriptions and a plot that keeps you wondering what is going to happen next, Kiss of Awakening is a definite page turner. 



Overall Thoughts on 
Midnight Kiss:  Four New Adult Paranormal Romances

This box set of four novellas was as perfect as it gets and is well worth every penny.  I really liked the fact that although each story was different, the author’s incorporated the Midnight Cauldron and its owner, Kalisa in every story.  I thought it really brought all four stories together beautifully.  I really can’t empathize enough on how amazing these four novellas are and they are a must read for any paranormal romance fan.

5 out of 5 stars



Click HERE to add to Goodreads



Meet the Authors
Sarra Cannon
Click HERE to read about Sarra Cannon

Juliana Haygert
Click HERE to read about Juliana Haygert

Alyssa Rose Ivy
Click HERE to read about Alyssa Rose Ivy

Jennifer Snyder
Click HERE to read about Jennifer Snyder

Purchase Links


Follow on Bloglovin

Release Day Blitz & Giveaway ~ Brew and Boil by David Estes

Happy Release Day!

Today, David Estes is proud to release two of his new novels, Brew and Boil.  I think they sound spectacular and can't wait to read them!  Read more about the two books below and don't forget to enter the awesome giveaway!


 Brew Synopsis
Salem’s Revenge strikes without warning or mercy, ravaging the powerless human race under the forces of united gangs of witches, wizards, and warlocks. During the slaughter, Rhett Carter's foster parents and sister are killed, and his best friend and girlfriend are abducted by a gang of witches calling themselves the Necromancers, who deal in the dark magic of raising the dead. Rhett’s sword-wielding neighbor with a mysterious past saves Rhett from becoming another casualty of the massacre and teaches him the skills he needs to survive in this new world.

Rhett is broken, his normal high school life of book blogging and football playing shoved in a witch-apocalyptic blender. The only thing he has left is his burning desire for revenge. Armed with his new witch hunting skills and a loyal, magic powered dog named Hex, he sets out into the unknown with one mission: hunt and destroy those who took away everyone he ever loved.

But Rhett isn’t just a witch hunter; He has secrets of his own that he has yet to discover, secrets that his enemies will stop at nothing to keep him from.


And discovering the truth about himself is the human race’s only hope.



Boil Synopsis 
Revenge. That’s all  that’s left for witch hunter Rhett Carter. The magic-born have stripped  everything from him - killed his friends, cursed his warlock father,  shattered his future - leaving him bare and broken, but not dead. Their  mistake.

When Rhett and Laney are suddenly thrust in different  directions, Rhett must decide who to trust and who to kill. Backed by  his trusty canine sidekick Hex, Rhett will embark on his deadliest  mission yet, one that will lead him directly toward those who want him  dead, pushing his unique resistance to magic to the edge and back again  as he tries to remove his father’s curse.

Separated from Rhett,  Laney seeks to understand the strange changes to her sister, Trish,  who’s believed to be the last living Clairvoyant, and what role she’s  destined to play in the future of humankind.


Wrapped around  everything are four major groups: the Necromancers, the Changelings, the  witch hunters, and New America, the remnants of humanity. When the  major forces are brought together for an epic battle, the fate of the  world hangs in the balance.

https://www.goodreads.com/series/115327-salem-s-revenge Click to purchase BREW http://www.amazon.com/Boil-Salems-Revenge-Book-2-ebook/dp/B00NXFPMPC/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1411722568&sr=1-1&keywords=Boil+Estes
Get both Brew and its sequel, Boil, the first two books in the Salem's Revenge series, for a special price of $0.99 each for a limited time only (Amazon Kindle exclusive: Brew until October 17th; Boil until October 7th) Click on the above buttons to take advantage of this limited time deal!

Goodreads  ●  David's Blog    Twitter  ●  Facebook    Tumblr 
and his  Goodreads Fan Group
     
David Estes was born in El Paso, Texas but moved to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania when he was very young. David grew up in Pittsburgh and then went to Penn State for college. Eventually he moved to Sydney, Australia where he met his wife. They now live together in their dream location, Hawaii. A reader all his life, he began writing novels for the children's and YA markets in 2010, and started writing full time in June 2012. Now he travels the world writing with his wife, Adele. David's a writer with OCD, a love of dancing and singing (but only when no one is looking or listening), a mad-skilled ping-pong player, and prefers writing at the swimming pool to writing at a table.



http://www.amazon.com/Fire-Country-The-Saga-Book-ebook/dp/B00B7VTXFO https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/16160701-fire-country
To celebrate the launch of Brew and Boil, David Estes is also giving away FREE Kindle copies of his popular YA dystopian AND adventure book, Fire Country.
Follow on Bloglovin