Book Blitz: Fairly Twisted Tales for a Horribly Ever After (REUTS Publications)

Blurb: When it comes to fairy tales, there are plenty of things that go bump in the night. Things so morbid and grotesque, so sinister and diabolical, they haunt your imagination; warnings from generations past that still manage to terrify.

In 2013, authors came together for the annual Project REUTSway writing competition, penning their own interpretive twists on stories we're all familiar with. Seventeen were chosen, bringing twenty-five new versions to life. From The Brother's Grimm, to Hans Christian Andersen and beyond, these tales are not the ones you grew up with. They are, however, Fairly Twisted Tales for a Horribly Ever After. Dare to find out what happens when "once upon a time" ends in the stuff of nightmares?

An exclusive hardcover will be available from REUTS Publications in the coming weeks, but you can devour these stories now for Kindle and Nook!

This NaNoWriMo season, REUTS Publication is inviting you join us in creating the next talented collection. So brush up on your histories, legends, and cultural lore, because we’ll be looking for the most original, fantastic versions of tales that have braved the centuries. The globe-trotting of world mythology will make weekly theme stops to visit Egyptian, Celtic, and even more rich lore from other areas of the world. This all starts November 1st, so make sure to grab your pens and ready those typing muscles for the twists that will be revealed on the Project REUTSway on twitter, or on their website.

Book Review: Seven Minutes in Heaven (The Lying Game #6) by Sara Shepard

Well, at last the series is over. Hallelujah.

Summary (as seen on Goodreads):

My sister wants the truth.

But sometimes the truth hurts.

For months, my long-lost twin, Emma, has been living my life and trying to solve my murder. She's unearthed dark secrets about my friends, my family, and my tangled past. But when it comes to finding my killer, she keeps running into dead ends.

Until my body shows up in Sabino Canyon. Suddenly everyone knows there are two girls who look like Sutton Mercer—and that one of them is dead. At first the police assume the body is Emma's. But as questions and accusations start flying, it's harder than ever for Emma to keep playing me. The truth is bound to come out eventually. And when it does, Emma will be suspect number one in my murder investigation. If she can't find my killer before time runs out, she'll end up behind bars . . . or worse.

  • I managed to get through this without spoiling anything except Nisha's death from last book for myself. So that's good. I know that has nothing to do with the book itself, but wanted to make a note of that.
  • I appreciated the reference to The Crucible. Love that play.
  • It was cool that Thayer subtly said Emma's name and got her to pause in her tracks, thus letting him figure out that Emma wasn't Sutton.
  • How nice for the MC to not end up with someone at the end of this novel. For that this doesn't get a 1-star review.
  • Thayer finally got suspicious! Yay! Although it's frustrating that no one else was really suspicious of anything before this...

  • Never really super liked Celeste to begin with, but why basically remove her in this book when she was only so recently introduced? I expected her to have a bigger role. Not that I ever really liked her that much, but still.

  • I was confused as to why Garrett wasn't investigated sooner. It didn't really make sense, especially re-suspecting Laurel a few books ago.
  • Not enough hints to make it realistic that the killer was Ethan. There is something called balancing clues and not being obvious. This didn't have enough clues leading up to the conclusion. A little more instability, more signs of antisocial personality disorder would've been nice. Ethan played his part way too well for it to be realistic.
  • Dislike how it was predicted that Sutton's death would be pinned on Emma way early on in the series, and then it happens... not very original.
  • It's cool that Emma is able to occasionally see flashes of Sutton toward the end of the series, but it never made sense when it happened. It was always just random, apart from when Sutton is able to help Emma get away from Ethan. That was disappointing.
  • While Thayer and Laurel did save Emma's life, it was a deux de machina - in a seemingly hopeless situation, even though Emma had called Laurel for help, it feels like a save just to make sure the heroine wins.
Overall, this series had a lot of potential but didn't quite live up to it. Perhaps if it had been better condensed or something it would've been better, but overall, not my favorite series. 2 jellyfish for this particular book, especially because of who the killer ended up being.

Thanks for tuning in, and as always, feel free to leave suggestions and such for reading or comments below!

Book Blitz: The Land Uncharted by Keely Brooke Keith

Title: The Land Uncharted
Author: Keely Brooke Keith
Release Date: October 21, 2014
Publisher: Edenbrooke Press

Lydia Colburn is a young physician dedicated to serving her village in the Land. Day and night, she rushes by horseback to treat the ill and injured, establishing a heroic reputation as the village’s new doctor.

Naval Aviator Connor Bradshaw is flying over the South Atlantic Ocean on a mission to secure any remaining sources of fresh water in a 2025 world torn apart by war. A malfunction activates his aircraft’s ejection system, parachuting his unconscious body to the shore of a hidden land. 

Lydia risks her safety to help the injured outsider despite the shock of his mysterious arrival and the disastrous implications his presence could have for her peaceful society, which has gone undetected for seven generations.

Connor searches for a way to return to his squadron, but his fascination with life in the Land makes him protective of Lydia and her peaceful homeland. And while Lydia’s attraction to Connor stirs desires she never anticipated, it also pushes an unwanted admirer to stage a dangerous attempt to win her affection.

As Connor tries to keep the Land off the radar, he learns the biggest threat to Lydia lurks in her village. But when Lydia’s greatest passion and darkest fear collide, will she look to the past or the future to find the strength to survive?

Add The Land Uncharted to your shelf on GoodreadsShelfariLibraryThing, or FictFact

Pre-order today!
 Have your ebook of The Land Uncharted signed via Authorgraph!

Advance Praise for The Land Uncharted:
"Not only is Keely's writing beautiful and full of vivid detail, but the story and characters are incredible! I love the way she crosses genres and how well it all blends together.” -Christina Yother, author of Reverie

The Land Uncharted captured my interest from the opening lines. Keely Brooke Keith skillfully weaves an engaging story that explores the possibilities of a simple, peaceful existence in a society set apart from a world ravaged by conflict. Equal parts suspense and romance, this debut novel is a compelling read.” -Heidi McCahan, author of Unraveled

About the Author
Keely is a bass guitarist and lives on a hilltop south of Nashville. When she isn’t writing stories or playing bass, Keely enjoys dancing, having coffee with friends, and sifting through vintage books at antique stores. 

Author Links:
Twitter * Facebook * Goodreads * Instagram * Pinterest

Book Blitz Organized by:

Book Review: Cross My Heart, Hope to Die (The Lying Game #5) by Sara Shepard

The books would blend one into the next if I didn't write reviews immediately after reading them. This is a good practice, I think.

Summary (as seen on Goodreads):

Ever since Sutton Mercer's murderer tricked her long-lost twin, Emma, into coming to Tucson, Emma has been trying to solve the mystery of Sutton's death. And now someone else is back in town--Becky, Sutton and Emma's birth mother. As Emma gets closer to discovering what exactly happened the night Sutton was killed, she learns that Becky isn't all that she seems. Turns out Sutton wasn't the only Mercer girl with dark secrets. 

  • While the same pattern from the other books is repeated, at least the suspect is much more realistic this time.
  • Clever dialogue - when Garret says "We've got to, like, preserve the earth's resources," it shows so much of his real attitude without having to say so. Showing rather than telling lacks a lot in these novels, so it was nice to see something like this, however subtle, be present.
  • Interesting dynamic now that Sutton can touch some things - it's finally something different, and Sutton also isn't so passive anymore.
  • The murderer comes back, but the murderer has also been kind of absent. Don't really know how to feel about this.

  • Strange word choice - for example, what does "groused" even mean?
  • This love triangle thing that keeps happening through so many books kind of needs to stop. (Okay, so I'm kind of a hypocrite, but shh.)
  • The use of adverbs. Adverbs can be replaced with words that better show a scene.
  • Confusing thing about the whole grandmother and mother thing, especially when Mr. Mercer says "Your mom and I have never stopped talking about this." Couldn't tell if this was Kristen or Becky.

While the same predicable pattern continues (not going to continue the predictable pattern of saying this is a thing), this book was at least better than the previous one, so it gets back up to a 3-star. I don't see any book in this series getting above three jellyfish from me, though.

I don't remember who recommended I read this. Wish I could hear their thoughts! Anyway, please leave thoughts below! :)

Book Review: The Legacy (The Birthright Trilogy #1) by Necole Ryse

It is a pleasure and an honor to review a novel written by a friend of mine, Necole Ryse! I do keep my reviews fair even if I am friends with someone. Also, I received an e-book version of The Legacy from Necole from a contest, and that also in no way influenced my review.

Without further ado, let the review begin!

Summary (as seen on Goodreads):
Nineteen-year-old Raevyn Jones has never worn a designer gown. She's never had access to unlimited champagne or chauffeured limo rides. But when she is dropped in the midst of the Black Ivy League—against her will—she has to pretend that everything is normal, as if she belongs. When her new friends start to question her sketchy past and her shaky legacy at Benjamin Wallace Fitzgerald University, Raevyn realizes she will have to rely on her street smarts more than ever before. Raevyn starts to receive cryptic text messages and emails from an anonymous sender and she soon discovers that not only does someone want her to leave B.W.Fitz--someone also wants to end her life.

Instead of my usual format, just for this book, I'll give a brief summary of my thoughts.

There was great use of detail occurred throughout the story. The way Antoine was weaved in, especially in the first chapter and throughout, was well-balanced between showing the reader details without bogging them down with too many. This helped with immersion in the story, adding to its realism.

This story was unique due to the fact that the characters are all African-American. What a treat! Hopefully, more literature will begin to present more balanced character ethnicities. While it was great to have minority characters present, it would have been nice to see more of the black culture presented and weaved in throughout the story. For example, foods, traditions, etc. Yes, the MLK speech was a good touch, but perhaps the addition of something that non-black people wouldn't know about would have really added to the story. As an Asian-American, I'm aware that not everyone outside of the Asian community knows that many Asians often give part of their paychecks to their parents throughout their parents' lifetimes as a thanks for raising them for the first 18 years of life and, in most cases, also supporting them throughout college. Details like that about black culture would have really enhanced the story, and it was slightly disappointing to not see more of that.

It was really cool that Antoine was part of the story even though he never physically appears during it. The nickname "Bird" is incredibly clever, and added a lot of realism. Even though he doesn't physically appear, it's obvious that he's not a black-and-white character. He is deeply flawed, yet sweet and caring, making him a very realistic character. However, Raevyn's reaction to being away from Antoine was somewhat unrealistic. She did think about him a little bit, but there wasn't enough tension with the love triangle and her missing Antoine when she kissed Jeffrey, for example. More tension there would have been more realistic, especially considering what Antoine did for her. (Also, love triangles are seriously overused in general in YA literature... but I'll just not comment too much on that except to say that love triangles need to stop existing.)

Finally, while I normally don't comment on summaries, it was a bit frustrating that it took so long to get to the expected plot. Perhaps if the summary had included a little more about what was going to happen with the boys and the girls she was going to meet, it would have made more sense.

The story does get points for its twists and turns, and for not being predictable. Raevyn's reaction to what happened to Jeffrey at the end showed that she's grown up somewhat, and the ending definitely leaves readers wanting more. Overall, a few things could have made this novel much better, but it was still an enjoyable read. Due to the inclusion of minority characters, the fabulous incorporation of detail, and the unpredictable plot, I'll give this 3 and a half jellyfish. (I do round up for friends. Sue me.)

I look forward to the next book! And you should too.

Cover Reveal: Evolution by Kate Wrath

Cover Reveal

Cover of Kate Wrath's Evolution

Outpost Three is still standing… barely. But the deadliest threat it has ever faced is on its way– a violent force that will annihilate every man, woman, and child. With the Sentries under his control and Grey’s army defeated, Matt is more powerful than ever. Eden is little more than his prisoner, but that line is blurring as her affection for him grows. Now, as the Outpost faces total destruction, Matt must sacrifice the possibility of attaining Eden’s love in the vague hope that her past might hold the key to saving them all. Eden’s journey will begin to unravel the mysteries of her previous life, reveal dangerous new questions, and change not only the future of Outpost Three, but shape the course of history. This eagerly anticipated sequel to Kate Wrath’s E begins an epic quest into the dark, dystopian landscape of Eden’s world. Click to preorder.Connect with Kate: Kate Wrath's WebsiteGoodreads TwitterFacebook PinterestRock the Book

Cover Reveal: Fairly Twisted Tales for a Horribly Ever After by REUTS Publications

Here comes an exciting anthology from REUTS Publications! Lovely cover below.

Blurb: When it comes to fairy tales, there are plenty of things that go bump in the night. Things so morbid and grotesque, so sinister and diabolical, they haunt your imagination; warnings from generations past that still manage to terrify.

In 2013, authors came together for the annual Project REUTSway writing competition, penning their own interpretive twists on stories we're all familiar with. Seventeen were chosen, bringing twenty-five new versions to life. From The Brother's Grimm, to Hans Christian Andersen and beyond, these tales are not the ones you grew up with. They are, however, Fairly Twisted Tales for a Horribly Ever After. Dare to find out what happens when "once upon a time" ends in the stuff of nightmares?

Add To GoodReads - Follow On Twitter 

The 2013 organization was Reading Tree/Discover Books, a “green” charity which promotes literacy in the US by keeping books out of landfills, funding library sustainability, providing books to low-income families, and more.

For the 2014 season, we’re giving you the chance to decide where proceeds will go! The new year also brings with it a new theme. So brush up on your histories, legends, and cultural lore, because we’ll be looking for the most original, fantastic versions of tales that have braved the centuries. 

Hop on over and check it out! And while you're at it, if you're a writer, consider participating in Project reutsway this year! ;)

Book Review: Hide and Seek (The Lying Game #4) by Sara Shepard

It's nice to be two thirds of the way done with this series. Wonder what's coming next! Thoughts below.

Summary (as seen on Goodreads):

My friends and I used to play lying games.

Now my twin sister is living one.

When I was alive, my family seemed picture-perfect. My adoptive parents adored me, and my little sister, Laurel, copied my every move. But now that my long-lost twin, Emma, has taken my place to solve my murder, we’re both learning just how flawed my family really is.

Laurel is shooting Emma nasty looks and sneaking around with my ex-boyfriend. And it turns out my parents are keeping a huge secret—could it be the reason I’m dead?

How far would they go to keep the truth buried? No one can harm me now, but Emma is still fair game. And if she’s not careful, she’ll end up buried, too. . . .

  • The author is getting a better grip on handling the dual Emma-Sutton POV thing. At times it still feels a bit jarring, but there is a slight improvement of smoothness.
  • The idea that Mr. Mercer might have been the killer was interesting, although I kind of guessed all along that this would be proven false - just like every other novel in the series.

  • While the secret behind Becky is very interesting, it also kind of feels like a cop-out. There was a slight hint that it was coming when Emma wonders if she got some traits from some of the family members she was around, but currently the secret really is quite messed up and feels very weirdly placed.

  • The grounds for suspecting Laurel are shaky and don't make any sense. The book was still dedicated to this idea that it could be Laurel for way more time than necessary.
  • Sutton isn't supposed to have a heart, so how is it thumping? This contracts "If I could have shivered, I would have," and "I wished I could cry, too." But somehow this still happens: "I opened my mouth and wailed." This definitely threw me off a lot.
  • Too many random italics. If I used capital letters instead, perhaps that would explain some of my annoyance. "I'd FEEL it." "I HADN'T seen it yet." "Unless we...FIND her." Italics usually go for thoughts, not for emphasis of random words. Someone who has published as much work as Shepard has should have a better handle on how to use italics.
Again, I do find it difficult to review and rate work of this genre, but I'll keep giving it a shot anyway with the next two books. For now, this book shall receive two jellyfish, mostly due to the whole Laurel weirdness thing.

Any thoughts about this series, especially the theory that all the possible murder suspects end up being anything but?

Book Review: Two Truths and a Lie (The Lying Game #3) by Sara Shepard

It bugs me that I didn't review the first two books, but it can't be helped now...

Summary (as seen on Goodreads):

Sutton Mercer watches from the afterlife as her long-lost twin, Emma Paxton, takes over her identity to solve her murder. But after ruling out her early leads, Emma still hasn’t found Sutton’s killer. A lot of people wanted her dead—but one name keeps popping up: Thayer Vega. When the gorgeous and mysterious Thayer returns to town, Emma has to move fast to figure out whether he’s back for revenge…or if he already got it.


  • Subtle differences between Sutton and Emma, such as Emma's dislike of pineapples and Sutton never saying "sir". While Emma has gotten down the big differences, these little ones still make it difficult for her to continue in Sutton's life, which is interesting.
  • Progress with Emma and Ethan's relationship is nice. At least it makes it feel like the story is actually going somewhere.
  • Still a fan of the strange dual point of view thing. While it is unusual, it is appropriate for the story.


  • The writing isn't extremely "clean." It very much reads like a middle grade novel, while I feel like this series straddles middle grade and young adult. Therefore I'm not so strict about wanting good form, but at the same time I don't think any book in this series will get a 5-star rating if this keeps up.


  • The books have a predictable pattern of one person seeming to be a suspect, then turning out to not be it. This wouldn't be a problem if it wasn't so obvious, but unfortunately, it is. (Correct me if I'm wrong, but this is what I recall from the first two books.)
  • How do all these high school students get beer? I even double checked and looked up Arizona law, and people must be 21 to buy alcoholic drinks.
  • A lot of the writing can be "telly." An example would be "Mr. Mercer looked horrified." There are facial features that the author could have described to help readers actually see the scene.
  • While the girls have little regard for their pranks hurting people, framing someone for plagiarism is an area that is really crossing a line, even for these girls. I was surprised that there wasn't at least one other person attempting to be a voice of reason.
  • Realism question when it comes to the psychiatric hospital. It's true that psychiatric hospitals won't release information about their patients, even if asked specifically by name (the joys of being a psychology major), but I'm not convinced that the assistant wouldn't check the phone number to make sure it came from somewhere legitimate before giving out information so freely.
Overall, I'm not a great rater or reviewer of chick lit, so I'll probably give pretty similar ratings throughout the rest of my ratings for this series: 3 jellyfish.

Thanks for tuning in! Hopefully, I'll be able to put the rest of the series' reviews up as well in the coming weeks.