Completion Date: June 27, 2007
Pages: 343
Publication Year: 2007 (Signet Eclipse)
Purchased in 2007
Book Two in The Gardella Vampire Chronicles

Reason for Reading: I wanted to find out what happened next, of course.

In Italy, a powerful vampire is amassing the power to control the souls of the dead. Lady Victoria Gardella de Lacy-a vampire slayer for just over a year-races across Europe to stop what could be the most deadly army the Gardellas have ever faced. She is accompanied by Sebastian Vioget, a man as tempting as he is untrustworthy.

But when Victoria discovers that she has been betrayed by one of her most trusted allies, the truth will challenge all her powers as a Venator-and as a woman.
I am so happy that I finally found the time to sit down and read this book! I bought it when it first came out, and then June just got away from me. I finally got my chance, though, so I am happy to report that I read it!

When I read books, one of the most important things for me is how women are portrayed in the novel. I am a girl, and I like to read books where I can either relate, admire, or look up to the female characters. I am not interested in the "too stupid to live" female characters that can be quite common in different forms of literature. I think that in the 21st-century people are passed needing to read about the damsel in distress that is saved by her valiant knight. I know that I am! Lady Victoria Gardella Grantworth de Lacy is a woman, she may be a venator, but she is a woman first. She has taken on the role of protector and sworn to rid the world of vampires, but she is also battling with wanting the things that normal women in society have. This battle is one of the key themes of the novel.

Going back to how I like to read books with smart female leads, Victoria is put in a position where she is not protected as she normally is, and she still manages to kick vampire butt. This is very important to both her and to me as a reader, because it shows that just because she is a woman living in the nineteenth-century, she is still capable of protecting herself, even without that which makes her a venator. It is also nice that Victoria can be a woman and a vampire slayer because it seems to be common in other parnormal books that the women are all about the vampire slaying and less about being women. There is nothing wrong with being a female, the problem is how they are portrayed.

The other lead role in this book goes to Sebastian Vioget, which I am sure delighted many readers because he got a lot of page space. The other two men from book one did not, as one is dead and I will let you figure out Max on your own by reading the book. I am not sure who I like better, Max or Sebastian. I think they both have interesting characteristics, and that they would both equally be interesting to have lots of page time in the coming books in the series. I am also not sure Victoria really has to pick anyone, she has no intention of ever marrying. Sebastian turns out to be more than meets in the eye in several instances during this book. The reader learns a lot about him and why he found himself running a bar that was for vampires and humans.

A lot of things happen in this book. A great deal of it takes place in Rome, where a new threat is rising to give problems to the mortal race. It is up to Victoria and a few others to save the city, but I think saying too much about that would give away a big aspect of the plot. Colleen also introduces some other men to the mix, but none, for me, are as great as Sebastian and Max. I also highly doubt they will be her lovers in future books, if mentioned all.

Parting Thoughts: It is June 28th today, and I am sad because I have to wait until next year to find out what happens next. Did anyone read the little spoiler for The Bleeding Dusk in the back of the book? I never read them because I am interested in the book as it is, I do not need to be anymore anxious for its release. I think that this series has a good thing going for it, and that this book stands up to, if not surpasses The Rest Falls Away. I highly recommend this book and this series. Another great read, and one of my favourites of the year. To see my other favourites, see my Thursday Thirteen on my other blog.

Colleen Gleason's second book in the Gardella Vampire Chronicles is barely out on the shelves and she's offering Twisted Kingdom readers a special opportunity to win an ADVANCE COPY of THE BLEEDING DUSK, the third installment in the Gardella Vampire Chronicles.

In order to be entered in the drawing, you need to send an email to me at Twisted_Kingdom_Blog AT hotmail DOT com along with a picture of RISES THE NIGHT in a store THAT IS NOT A BOOKSTORE IN THE US, CANADA, or AUSTRALIA.

That's right....a picture of the book in a bookstore in a country other than the US, Canada, or Australia--or a drugstore, grocery store, airport store, or other non-bookstore location anywhere (including the US and Canada).

Send the picture on and you'll be entered to win an advance copy of THE BLEEDING DUSK!


So, ladies and gents, I need feedback. I imagine that some people out there must want an advanced reading copy of The Bleeding Dusk, but I have only received one picture! I am looking for some feedback, are people looking and just not finding anything? Should I extend the date passed the tenth? I live in a town where the chances of Rises the Night appearing anywhere but a bookstore is very slim, so I need other people to let me in one what is going on. This is a very flexible competition because Colleen does not even have the advanced reading copies in her possession yet.

Remember, if you live in North America, the idea is to find the book somewhere other than a bookstore: the airport, grocery store, Wal-Mart, etc. If you live elsewhere, you can take a picture of the book wherever you see it, so that includes the bookstore. You do not have to buy it, just throw the camera in your purse when you go grocery shopping or make sure the camera phone is charged.

In other news, I am just finishing up Rises the Night, so expect a review of it soon!

This is the first book in The Great Book of Amber.

Amber, the one real world, wherein all others, including our own Earth, are but Shadows. Amber burns in Corwin's blood. Exiled on Shadow Earth for centuries, the prince is about to return to Amber to make a mad and desperate rush upon the throne. From Arden to the blood-slippery Stairway into the Sea, the air is electrified with the powers of Eric, Random, Bleys, Caine, and all the princes of Amber whom Corwin must overcome. Yet, his savage path is blocked and guarded by eerie structures beyond imaging—impossible realities forged by demonic assassins and staggering horrors to challenge the might of Corwin's superhuman fury.
I was so lucky to have won this book because, so far, I am really enjoying the series. This is the first book, and it was a good introduction. To be honest, so far I believe that the collected works is the best way to release this series because the books flow into one another in such a way that they can all be the same book. Corwin, a Prince of Amber, is the main character. He has been exiled on Earth, and has no memory of who he is and where he came from. The nine brothers are fighting for the throne of Amber, and it is these brothers that Corwin has to beat in order to become king. He just does not necessarily know this yet.

In this book, we really get our first glimpse of Corwin, and through him get a rundown of the family tree, and what a large family tree it is. Nine is just the brothers, there are several sisters, too. The family is all rather old, but for them Amber is the real world and the place that we call earth is just a shadow to them. The whole family is against one another, with brief alliances happening from time to time to gain power. Power is the name of the game for this family, that is for sure. Female characters are rather lacking in this power struggle, though. They make their appearances, but just as quickly they vanish so that their brothers can battle things out.

Overall, though, a very good first book to this series. I have also read book two, which I will review soon, and I plan to read more of the series soon. What does everyone think of the 1977 cover?

Margaret Weis has written a lot of books during her career, she had several books out this year alone. For the Author of the month challenge, though, I will be concentrating on her work on the Dragonlance novels. I will not be able to read all of them, of course, but I am hoping to read a couple between now and July 15th and then continue with more throughout the year.

Dragonlance : Chronicles (with Tracy Hickman)
1. Dragons of Autumn Twilight (1984)
2. Dragons of Winter Night (1985)
3. Dragons of Spring Dawning (1985)
Dragonlance Chronicles (1988)
4. Dragons of Summer Flame (1995)
The Annotated Chronicles (1999)

3. Test of the Twins (1986)
2. War of the Twins (1986)
1. Time of the Twins (1986)
Dragonlance Legends (1986)
The Annotated Legends (2003)

Dragons of Glory (1986) (with Douglas Niles)
The Best of Tales (2000) (with Tracy Hickman)
The Best of Tales Volume 2 (2002) (with Tracy Hickman)
Spectre of Sorrows (2004)
Dragons in the Archives: The Best of Weis And Hickman (2004) (with Tracy Hickman)
Intro to Dragonlance Boxed Set (2004)
The Magic of Krynn: Tales, Volume One (2005) (with Tracy Hickman)
Holy Order of the Stars (2005)

Dragonlance : Tales (with Tracy Hickman)
3. Love and War (1987)
1. The Magic of Krynn (1987)
2. Kender, Gully Dwarves and Gnomes (1987)
Dragonlance Tales: Magic of Krynn, Kender, Gully Dwarves and Gnomes and Love and War (1991)

Dragonlance : Tales II
1. The Reign of Istar (1992) (with Tracy Hickman, Richard A Knaak and Michael Williams)
2. The Cataclysm (1992) (with Nancy Varian Berberick, Tracy Hickman, Roger E Moore)
3. The War of the Lance (1992) (with Tracy Hickman, Richard A Knaak and Michael Williams)

Dragonlance : Dragons (with Tracy Hickman)
1. The Dragons of Krynn (1994)
2. The Dragons at War (1996)
3. The Dragons of Chaos (1996)
Dragons of Time (2007)

The Second Generation (1994)

1. The Doom Brigade (1996)
2. Draconian Measures (2000)
Dragonlance : Raistlin
1. The Soulforge (1997)
2. Brothers in Arms (1999) (with Don Perrin)

Relics and Omens: Tales of the Fifth Age (1998)
Heroes and Fools: Tales of the Fifth Age (1999)
Rebels and Tyrants: Tales of the Fifth Age (2000)

1. Dragons of a Fallen Sun (2000) (with Tracy Hickman)
2. Dragons of a Lost Star (2001) (with Tracy Hickman)
3. Dragons of a Vanished Moon (2002) (with Tracy Hickman)
War of Souls Gift Set (2003) (with Tracy Hickman)
The Search for Power (2004)

Sovereign Stone (with Tracy Hickman)
1. Well of Darkness (2000)
2. Guardians of the Lost (2001)
3. Journey into the Void (2003)

Dragonlance : Tales from the War of Souls (with Tracy Hickman)
1. The Search for Magic (2001)
2. The Players of Gilean (2003)

Dragonlance : Young Adult Chronicles (with Tracy Hickman)
2. Night of the Dragons (2003)
1. A Rumor of Dragons (2003)
3. The Nightmare Lands (2003)
4. To The Gates of Palanthas (2003)
5. Hope's Flame (2004)
6. A Dawn of Dragons (2004)
Chronicles for Young Readers Gift Set (2004)

1. Amber and Ashes (2004)
2. Amber and Iron (2006)
3. Amber and Blood (2007)

Dragonlance : Dark Chronicles (with Tracy Hickman)
1. Dragons of the Dwarven Depths (2006)
2. Dragons Of The Highlord Skies (2007)

Not even all of these books interest me, but hopefully the ones that do, I will read in the coming months.

MacKayla Lane’s life is good. She has great friends, a decent job, and a car that breaks down only every other week or so. In other words, she’s your perfectly ordinary twenty-first-century woman. Or so she thinks…until something extraordinary happens.

When her sister is murdered, leaving a single clue to her death–a cryptic message on Mac’s cell phone–Mac journeys to Ireland in search of answers. The quest to find her sister’s killer draws her into a shadowy realm where nothing is as it seems, where good and evil wear the same treacherously seductive mask. She is soon faced with an even greater challenge: staying alive long enough to learn how to handle a power she had no idea she possessed–a gift that allows her to see beyond the world of man, into the dangerous realm of the Fae….

As Mac delves deeper into the mystery of her sister’s death, her every move is shadowed by the dark, mysterious Jericho, a man with no past and only mockery for a future. As she begins to close in on the truth, the ruthless Vlane–an alpha Fae who makes sex an addiction for human women–closes in on her. And as the boundary between worlds begins to crumble, Mac’s true mission becomes clear: find the elusive Sinsar Dubh before someone else claims the all-powerful Dark Book–because whoever gets to it first holds nothing less than complete control of the very fabric of both worlds in their hands…

This was one of those books where first person narration was a huge disadvantage to the story because the story slowly unfolded through Mac’s eyes, and Mac was, simply put, too stupid to live. There’s just no other way to say it. She’s described as a 22-year-old blonde from Georgia, who grew up pretty sheltered. Thoroughout the story, there were numerous mentions of how she looked like Barbie; how pretty she was and how much she loved the color pink. I swear I got so tired of reading Mac’s ramblings about nail polish, clothes, shoes and whatever else came into her empty head: ("I’m big on drinking lots of water. Hydrating one’s skin from the inside out is even more important than using a good moisturizer on the surface.") But what was so frustrating about her was that she never knew what was going on and, because she didn’t know, the reader didn’t know, either. Mac was always in way over her head without a clue as to the kind of danger she was in, and she kept making the same mistakes over and over again—more concerned about her outfit and make-up than how she was going to stay alive. Not to mention the fact that she couldn’t see things that were right in front of her. Halfway through the book and she was still trying to deny what she was and it was irritating, especially when proof kept starting her right in the face. All she really did was follow around Jericho, blindly doing whatever he told her to do.

As for Jericho, he was supposed to be a shady, mysterious, character that’s always “in the know” with the dark side of things, such as criminals and whatnot. He was written as an Alpha male but he just came off as a jerk to me and a pretty bland one, too.

Besides the TSTL heroine (and bland hero), my main problem with this book is that it’s so blatantly a series setup; the plot never really gets off the ground and by the end, hardly anything has been resolved. The majority of the plot threads are just left hanging for the next book. I don’t mind if a book is a series starter or apart of a series—if you want to carry some subplots over for the next book, fine—but at least give me a solid story with some real resolution to the main plot by the time I finish the book. I felt like this book was just an intro book without any real substance. Anyone who brought this book in hardcover (raises hand) got ripped off.

In truth, I think Moning’s writing just isn’t for me. I tried one of her Highlander books before and found it mediocre at best, but I decided to try this one anyway because I heard she was doing something different with this series—not so much romance as paranormal suspense coupled with Fae. Also, I didn’t think it’d be fair to judge Moning’s entire works based on one book, but again, I was left wanting.

Final Word:

I found Darkfever’s plot boring; the heroine TSTL, the creatures unimaginative and Jericho a dull, jerk.

So, last months author of the month has been over for a few days, but I sort of lost track of the date. I find that June has gone by very quickly! That means that I meant to have Colleen Gleason's book read by the 15th, but I lost track of when the 15th was! Many apologies, but she is giving away an advanced reading copy of her new book, so it was a good author of the month month.

Now, we move on to the new author of the month: Margaret Weis. So, my plan is to read as many Dragonlance books as I can between now and the 15th (or so) of July. Tomorrow I will post a bit of a biography and a book list. I really like her writing, so hopefully I can get through a lot of her books! First, though, I am going to read Colleen Gleason's new book and post all about it!

Colleen Gleason just emailed to say that Rises the Night has been spotted in a Walgreen's in Texas, so that means that it should start appearing in stores across North America. Just remember, you do not have to buy it, just drop the digital camera in your purse when you go grocery shopping or make sure you have battery on your camera phone, and when you spot it, just take a picture and send it into Twisted Kingdom. If you live in the United States, Canada, and Australia, you have to try and find it outside the bookstore, but if you live anywhere else, anywhere you see it is fine. So far... I have one picture. So, hopefully I will get a few more between now and July 10th. The email is twisted_kingdom_blog AT hotmail DOT com. Although if you forget and send it to the regular email, those will count as well!

Kellen's mother has always insisted that her only child was born male, not female, so Kellen has been raised as a boy. Then she is forced to go to school, where she meets Gryffin, whose mind is as strong as his legs are damaged, and the two become friends and allies. A few years later, the two get jobs working at a nearby inn, the Parmer Arms. When it is discovered that Gryffin is the kingdom's new Dream-Maker, someone whose mere presence can help dreams come true, he is whisked away to the castle, leaving Kellen behind. By now, their friendship is shading into something more.Will it endure?
This is book three in The Safe-Keeper series following on from The Safe-Keeper's Secret and The Truth-Teller's Tale.

This was my favourite in the trilogy I think. I really enjoyed all the characters in this book more than the characters in the other books. The way that all the pieces of the novel come together is very interesting. The main character is Kellen, her mother thought for sure she gave birth to a boy, so she raised her daughter as a boy for years. It took Kellan to get her own identity and break away from the norms that her mother set for her. She gets her own life and meets some very interesting people along the way.

Gryffin helps her out a great deal. They are both outcasts at school, Kellen because she is not sure if she is a boy or a girl and Gryffin because his legs are damaged. Between the two of them, they work together to get their lives together and be happy. Gryffin also is the new dream-maker, taken over from the older woman that lost her powers in The Truth-Teller's Tale. Dream-makers grant wishes, but rarely have any good luck themselves. Gryffin's good luck comes, though, but will Kellen and him be able to be together when he is the dream-maker is for you to find out by reading this book.

A very fine ending to a great Sharon Shinn trilogy.

After saving the world from his fiendish father's side of the family, Cal Leandros and his stalwart half-brother Niko have settled down with new digs and a new gig-bodyguard and detective work. And in New York City, where preternatural beings stalk the streets just like normal folk, business is good. Their latest case has them going undercover for the Kin-the werewolf Mafia. A low-level Kin boss thinks a rival is setting him up for a fall, and wants proof. The place to start is the back room of Moonshine-a gambling club for non-humans. Cal thinks it's a simple in-and-out job. But Cal is very, very wrong.

I got to page 24, yes 24, before I decided I couldn't take anymore. The story is told from Cal's point of view and he tries just too damn hard to be cool, witty, and sarcastic. Like a private eye from one of those Maltese Falcon wanna-be B movies. He also tells us more than once that his brother is the very best and most efficient killer. I half expected the guy to be Superman or something. That's the problem with the way the book is written. In merely 24 pages the author managed to bore me because he tells, tells, tells the audience what he wants us to believe rather than trying to show it to us. Perhaps if Cal didn't think his brother was "the bomb diggity" or Bruce Lee reincarnated and perhaps if he didn't try so damn hard to sound cool I could have cared enough to stick with the story. As it is he grated on my hot damn nerves like a wanna-be teenage punk.

A sad 2 out of 5. Just because the book cover is nice.

The lovely women of Twisted Kingdom have graciously allowed me to hijack their blog for a bit. As for who in the world I am, my name is Rene Lyons. I'm a paranormal romance romance author who writes for both Samhain and the soon-to-be-opened Tease Publishing. I have three books out so far, all in eBook format and two in print. They are the first three books in a series I've titled the Templar Vampire Series.

Now...enough of that and on to the post. ;)

When I was a little girl I hated to read. And I mean hated it. And then it happened. I was roughly fourteen or so and I had strep throat. This put me on bed rest for the better part of ten days. Bored to death of daytime television (remember, this is back before the wonderful days of cable), I annoyed my mother to the point that she tossed a book in my face and told me to read it or go to sleep. Either way, she was done with my whining. So, I read. And read. And read. The book was Shanna by Katherine E. Woodiwiss. Needless to say I was hooked. A new obsession with reading was born. I read it in two days - and for those who know the book, it's a big one. More than anything, the happy ending got me. As soon as I was well enough, I raced to the book store and loaded up on romance novels. Oh yeah. I was a changed girl. I began to read everything I got my hands on. Books. Magazines. Hell, I even read the ingredients on boxes of cereal. The more words I took in the happier I was. Then, along came a treasure called Saving Grace by Julie Garwood. That book began me down the path that led to where I am today. I happened to have been in a god-awful relationship at the time I read SG, so I felt the book mirrored my emotions. By the time I was finished with it, I knew writing was something I wanted to do. I had to put my emotions down on paper. I had to tell the stories playing out in my mind like wonderful little movies. I had to....well, I just had to do everything that came with writing.

So, here I am, almost twenty years after reading Saving Grace. I did it. I made my dream come true. Determination and belief in one's self are things I hope to pass onto my daughter. I want her to look at me and be inspired to never give up on whatever dreams she may have. I mean, come on, I'm just a chick born and raised in Brooklyn (no, I don't live there anymore) who likes to jot down some stories. If I can come this far (with a very long road left to travel down), I hope my daughter can see that she can do the impossible as well.

Okay, was that too preachy? lol

Thanks to the incredible women of Twisted Kingdom. I had a blast taking over your blog. ;)

Thanks for stopping by Rene!

To the forest on the shore of the Kingdom of the Isles, the orphan Pug came to study with the master magician Kulgan. But though his courage won him a place at court and the heart of a lovely Princess, he was ill at ease with the normal ways of wizardry. Yet Pug's strange sort of magic would one day change forever the fates of two worlds. For dark beings from another world had opened a rift in the fabric of spacetime to being again the age-old battle between the forces of Order and Chaos.
After reading Flight of the Nighthawks back in April, I decided it was time to go back in the pages to the first book in Raymond Feist's career. I was a little worried because people had told me that Pug, the main character, had annoyed them in this book. It was not a problem for me, though. I think it was actually good that I had read a later book because instead of seeing Pug as an annoyance, I saw him as the character that would grow up to be in Flight of the Nighthawk.

This is the book that explains how Pug became Pug. It is in this book that he gets the chance to become a magicians apprentice and learn the trade that will be so vital in his future. By the title, us as readers know that this what will occur for him, but on the day that the townspeople pick their apprentices, Pug is the very last one chosen. He fears that no one will pick him and then he will have to leave forever, but the King's Magician assures that does not happen and steps forward to offer Pug an opportunity that few will ever get the chance to experience.

It is actually aways interesting to me when an author puts enough time into a series that you can actually watch a fictional character grow up. Pug is just a child in this book, but by Feist's newest series he is by all accounts a grandfather, even if his son did not actually provide the sperm that made the children. I think that as a whole this series will be interesting because you get to watch Pug grow up from an annoying little kid to the very powerful adult. To watch him struggle to learn how to use magic was amazing, to see him be the brave soul that saved the princess was actually a little funny, and to watch his country be thrown into war a time for the cast of characters to grow.

This is book one in the Riftwar Saga. I look forward to reading the future books in this series.

At first I couldn't for the life of me figure out just how I felt about this book. It's just that kind of a book. Lucky for me I finally figured I don't care much for it and so here we are with this review.

From Amazon we have the plot:

When her parents, the king and queen of Wonderland, are killed by her Aunt Redd, Alyss Heart escapes by jumping into the Pool of Tears. Her jump takes her to Victorian Oxford, where she emerges from a puddle, lives as a street urchin, and is eventually adopted by Reverend and Mrs. Liddell. Unable to make anyone believe her fantastic story, she finally confides in Charles Dodgson, who says he will write a book about her. When she discovers that Alice's Adventures Underground is full of make-believe, and not her story or her real name, she sadly resigns herself to life as a Victorian girl of privilege. Meanwhile, back in Wonderland, the Alyssians form a resistance movement and attempt to overthrow the despotic Redd. For years, Hatter Madigan searches the world for Alyss so she can return to Wonderland as Queen.
Mailyn Says:

I have to admit there are a few things that attracted me to this book. Mainly the reviews mostly promising this was anything but Lewis's Wonderland. That was fine with me since I have never cared for the Alice books one bit. In fact, they are right up there with Pride & Prejudice in the "books I cannot stand" category.

Another thing was the plot which sounded interesting.

Unfortunately that was the only interesting thing about this book: the premise. The actual execution of it left much to be desired. The characters were, as many people have observed, as one-dimensional as they come. The all-powerful Alyss, the trusted bodyguard, and a host other cliche characters, along with some very bad writing, make this one of the most boring books I've read in a long time. I was mildly interested in the first couple of chapters but by the time I started seeing everything coming a mile away I just skipped ahead to see how Beddor would end it all.

All in all, a big waste of time regardless of whether you love or hate the original Alice books.

A 2 out of 5 just to give it a few points for the premise.

Kailana Says:

It's sad that you did not like this book Mailyn because while I did not think it was the best book ever, I also did not think it was a waste of time either. I really do not like Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll. I consider it one of my least favourite books of all time. I can never even finish it, I find myself skimming. This book I read from cover to cover, so that puts it a bit ahead of the original.

I agree that the book is a bit predictable, but it was an original take on a classic story. The majority of the characters were compelling, but some of them I think he could have been developed a bit more. I did have the story figured out a great deal of the time, but Alyss interested me and she was a great figure to watch develop. I like how you can see aspects from the oringinal reworked. The Cheshire Cat works for her evil aunt, cards play an important aspect, and the catapillars are the philosophers that represent Lewis Carroll. It also shows how the story that we know of Alice in Wonderland progressed into the story that Beddor has written.

I liked this book better than the original. It is going to be a trilogy, so we will see if by the time book two comes out I still have enough interest in the story. Not a book to be bought in hardcover, but not a totally waste of time either.

Ladies and Gents, it is my pleasure to present a very new interview with Rene Lyons. She is the author of the Templar Vampire Series, and she is here today to answer both our question and any that you may have to ask her. She will also be back in the next couple days to do a guest blog post and there is a rumour of a give-away, so stay tuned! The books in her series so far are as follows: Midnight Sun, The Daystar and Tempting Darkness. You can read her blog by clicking here.

Twisted Kingdom: What is your favourite colour?
Rene Lyons: People always think it's black. Actually, it's white.

TK: What is your favourite food?
RL: Lasagna.

TK: Do you have any pets?
RL: Little Man and Bugsy are my two cats and I have one fish named Al Capone.

TK: Is it hard being a mom and an author at the same time, or do you have a nice balance?
RL: Most of the time I've found that perfect balance. But there are days when it's pure chaos around here and I can't even think.

TK:What is your favourite author/book?
RL:This Is All I Ask by Lynn Kurland, who also happens to be my favorite author. That woman could write a grocery list and I'd buy it. I also adore Anya Bast. I don't read much erotica, but I truly get lost in her books.

TK: Besides yourself, what is your favourite author/book from Samheim Publishing? Why do you recommend it?
RL: Nuermar's Last Witch by AE Rought is the sort of book that grabs you and doesn't let go until the last page. I loved the depth of the characters and the urgency of AE's writing style.

TK: What is it like to make the move from e-books to seeing your books in print? Did you feel the same for both experiences, or was one more exciting than the other?
RL: Although it was incredible to know my book was available as an eBook, the truth is, there's nothing like seeing your book in print. When I first held Midnight Sun - turned the pages, saw my words on paper - I felt as if I were in a wonderful dream I never wanted to wake from.

TK: Do you have rules for how your female characters are going to act in your books as a female author, or do they just take on roles of their own? (I'm sorry, I had to ask...)
RL: The only rule I make sure I stick to is that, none of my heroines can be Too Stupid To Live. I have no problem scrapping an entire book and re-writing it if she falls into that awful catagory.

TK: Which cover is your favourite? Was it weird to ask your friend to appear on the front of one your books?
RL: The Awakening is my favorite cover. I designed and created it myself, so I'm really proud of it. Andy Douglas and I had only just met when he was on the cover of Tempting Darkness (he's also on the cover of The Awakening). And no, it's not weird at all to have him on my books. In fact, it makes those two books very special to me. I'm blessed to have him as a friend. He's an amazing person.

TK: If you were given the chance of going back and re-write a scene or a character, what would it be?
RL: I'd re-write Midnight Sun. Yes, the entire book. I'd put back in a lot of Sebastian and the Templar's backstory that was taken out during edits. I'd also extend certain scenes between Sebastian and Allie that I now see played out in more detail in my mind.

TK: If you got offered the chance to make a movie or television series of your books, would you do it? Why or why not? And if you would, who would you like to see playing the lead roles?
RL: Of course I'd love to see my Templars in a movie or a television series! Wentworth Miller would have to play Sebastian. I'd have to have Andy Douglas play Lucian, because now, that's who I envision when I think of that character. As to Constantine, Raphael, and Tristan, maybe your readers can help me with who could play them.

TK: What's happening in the future? Any release dates for new books or new series that you will be working on?
RL: I'm writing Eternal Sin, the fourth installment of the Templar Vampire Series. Come July 31st, The Seraphim: Setheus will be released as an eBook. In October, Tempting Darkness will become available in print. The Awakening will also be released in October through Tease Publishing. Stella Price and I, along with a handful of other authors, are working on a project we plan on completing for Fall of this year. I can't say much about it yet, but I can tell you this: The New Generation of Romance is coming soon!

Upon completion of this interview, I have another question, so if Rene happens to read this, maybe you could say in the comments what readers can expect from The Seraphim: Setheus.

An apprentice clockmaker facing failure...a writer with a story he can't control....a girl whose courage will need to match her kindness...a prince whose mechanical heart is winding down...a clockwork knight with murderous tendencies...and a doctor who just may be the Devil.

Their stories come together piece by piece in this chilling tale where nothing is as it seems, but like the gears of a strange and wonderful clock, everything fits together.
In my second year of university I took a fantasy course, and this book was supposed to be one of the books we read, but it never ended up happening. I hate to admit it but I am not really a huge Philip Pullman fan. I have read The Golden Compass, and it just did not do anything for me. I do not have a big urge to read the rest of the trilogy. I am not sure why I picked this book up considering my feelings on his other writing, but it was on the TBR pile and I thought I would give it a try.

I will admit it, for such a short book and for such a young reading level, being labeled as for ages 9 to 12, I thought that this book was very thought provocing. What would happen if you were a storyteller who had a story in a dream, wrote it down, but were not sure how it ended until one of your story characters walked into the bar you were reading in. What if you were an apprentice to a great clockworker and it was your turn to prove to the world what you were capable of, but for the first time ever there is nothing new to go on the clock. Or, if you were a little girl with a big heart facing a dangerous situation. What if all these things were parts of a story, and there was an evil doctor who was going to bring all the people that seem unrelated together.

In a way, this is a book about books and how sometimes the fiction can become the reality so you should be careful what lines you put to the page. This book is only 107 pages, a book that you can easily read in one sitting, but a lot happens in some very short pages. Welcome to your darkest fairy tale.

I was looking for books to buy one day and came across Thief with no Shadows by Emily Gee. The back blurb sounded good and there was a quote saying something like "great romance story!" ... and so I bought it. I guess I'm easy LOL

Thief with no Shadows by Emily Gee: 2.5/5
published by Solaris in April 2007

Melke is a wraith and so has the ability to become invisible. As a result, wraiths are usually persecuted because they are great thieves and spies. Melke has promised her mother that she would never become a thief; however, she breaks that promess in order to save her younger brother, Hantje, from the fire-breathing salamanders. So in exchange for her brother, she must steal a necklace from the sal Vere.

As soon as Bastien sal Vere is aware of the theft, he goes after Melke, but he is too late. Furious, he forces Melke to steal back the necklace. See, what Melke didn't know was that the necklace was made up of tears of psaaron, some sea creature, and it was the solution to a curse... and so Bastien desperately needs it in order to free himself and his sister.

My thoughts: I was quite disappointed in the book, not only because the great romance story wasn't there, but also because I think that the world building was lacking and there wasn't enough character development. Let's start with the world building... I thought that I miss a chapter or two where things were explained. There are 4 "paranormal" creatures and they're pretty much feared and each of them use sex in a certain way... and that was the only thing that was explained. There wasn't much about the geography or even day to day life or what kind of powers/abilities people could have. I mean, Bastien can talk to dogs in his mind and Liana, his younger sister, has a healing gift... but how rare are those powers... I have no idea. So my thoughts are that the author had this storyline all figure out, but not the world building and so she figured out she could still write the book. It's just seems to me that the book was lacking.

Now, the characters... well perhaps it wasn't a lack of development, but it was hard to be attached to them, to care. I think that the majority of them were uni-dimensional and that's too bad... cos it was very difficult to like them. Melke seems to passive and Bastien was a real jerk in my opinion... which is why it I didn't see any romance between them at all. Basically, Bastien despises wraith and he's very angry at Melke and so, he treats her really badly. I don't often dislike heroes in my books, but in this case, I really had difficulty to see a good side to Bastien. I just wanted him to get over his dislike and suddenly, he was already in love... I didn't buy it...

The idea and storyline wasn't bad, but the book would definitively have been better if it was a bit more developed.... because of this, the flow of the book was akward.

Rowan doesn't believe he has a brave heart. But when the river that supports his village of Rin runs dry, he must join a dangerous journey to its source in the forbidden Mountain. To save Rin, Rowan and his companions must conquer not only the Mountain's many tricks, but also the fierce dragon that lives at its peak.
This short book is marketed to readers ages 8 and up. I should have been reading other books, but I recently read a review of this book and decided that I was going to pause in all that I should be doing to see if this was a series that interested me. It is very much a series for the young at heart, and I think I would be interested to see what happens in the later books.

This book takes place in a land called Rin. It is set in an age that is before the time that we are experiencing on earth, it is a very simplistic lifestyle and the citizens are all tradespeople who are very much tied to the land. When the villages river runs dry, though, the people are left faced with a dangerous situation. The water is the only source of refreshment for the bukshah, well water not being sweet enough for them. If the village people do not get to the root of the problem, the bukshah (which I picture as cows-like) will die and take a main resource away from the village leading to its eventual demise.

Once the village people are aware that there is a problem, they band together to formulate a plan that leads to the eventual decision that they are going to have to climb the Mountain and figure out what has stopped the water from flowing. Six brave souls volunteer for a mission that has never successfully been completed before: Strong Jonn, who is in love with Rowan's mother; Marlie, the weaver; Allun, the outsider that has something to prove; Bronden, the practical; and Van and Ellis, the inseparable twins. They are all brave souls, the bravest in the whole village, but a visit to Sheba, the towns oldest resident sets the tale on a different path.

The story is centred around Rowan. He is quiet, withdrawn, and fearful, but also the keeper of the bukshah. This is his story because Sheba chooses for this to be his tale. She teases the village folk that come to visit her, offering only a rhymn as their clue to the success of this mission:
Seven hearts the journey make.
Seven ways the hearts will break.
Bravest heart will carry on
When sleep is death, and hope is gone.
Look in the fiery jaws of fear
And see the answer white and clear,
Then throw away all thoughts of home,
For only then your quest is done.
Rowan, a visitor to Sheba's house, fears this rhymn. He has no way of knowing what lies in store for him and just how things will play out for him. He is ever fearful and refuses to believe that he can be brave, but he will be tested, as all the members will be, and the reader will get the chance to see whether this mission is successful or not. Oh, and there might even be a dragon for readers to meet.

My favourite thing about this book was that it is about a town where gender does not seem to matter. The women are just as strong and willing as the men, with three of the seven adventurers being women. I am always fond of novels that see women as more than weak and defenseless. As for downfalls, it is not the best book I have ever read, but it is a good start to a series that is focused towards younger children. It will teach them to root for the underdog.

Harper Collins also believes that this would be a book for Ron of Harry Potter fame. To see why, click here to be taken to the post they have provided.

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About Me

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Since I was a little girl I have been fascinated with books. Early photos show me with a book in hand, even if it was not exactly my reading level... My first word was a made-up word meaning 'book', actually. I suppose I had my priorities at an early age... Over the years my interest in books has become one of the defining features of who I am as a person. You can probably call me a bookworm. While I have other interests, reading will always be the one I talk about the most, even if I am not focusing on it as much as I used to.