Book Blitz: Mermaids and the Vampires Who Love Them by Debra Goelz

Mermaids and the Vampires Who Love Them
Debra Goelz
Published by: Hachette Audiobooks
Publication date: October 17th 2017
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult

Sixteen-year-old Waverly Fishwater believes that people who act suspicious are asking for her to spy on them. When she eavesdrops on one of her dad’s clandestine meetings, she learns that mermaids are being abducted. Fearing no one else will save them, Waverly swaps her tail for legs and heads to the site of the disappearances, but it doesn’t go as planned. After exposing mermaidkind to humanity, Waverly has to come to terms with leaving the home, friends, and school she loves. For her safety, she must go to a remote boarding school on the California coast.

Waverly discovers her new classmates are from a multitude of supernatural species, including werewolves, fairies, and minor Greek gods. But the bigger problem might be all the mermaid-blood loving vampires, and the fact that the most infuriating one has taken an interest in her already.

She must navigate this weird new world where her class schedule includes time-traveling history, fairy dance, interspecies biology, and sand-sculpting vain gods with rock-hard abs. The biggest letdown is that she still has to take algebra, even though polynomials are not her friends.

Just when she’s starting to fit in, she begins to unravel a dark plot that could destroy the bayside school and the oceans beyond. As she gets close to solving the mystery, the mernapper takes hold of her mind and hides the clues that will piece it together. Waverly is left with the knowledge of one thing: she’s next.

If Waverly is to expose the scheme and take out the mastermind, she’s going to have to rely on the most dubious kind of help-reckless gods, single-minded werewolves, and virtuous fairies. To avoid a supernatural catastrophe, Waverly must rally this eccentric band of heroes, learning to rely on the help of others in order to stay afloat.

Goodreads / Audible / Audiobookstore

Listen to an audio sample here!

 

Author Bio:

Debra Goelz is a refugee from Hollywood where she served for ten years as a financial executive for such companies as Universal Pictures, Dino de Laurentiis and Jim Henson Productions. Her performing career began and ended with her puppeteering a chicken during the closing scene in “Muppet Treasure Island.” After garnering over 9 million on-line reads, her award-winning YA fantasy, “Mermaids and the Vampires Who Love Them,” will be published by Hachette audio on October 17, 2017. She lives in a redwood forest in rural Marin County with her husband. Her two children have abandoned her to seek a college education in New York.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

 

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Book Tour: Last Chance by Gregg Hurwitz

The Rain brothers fight for the survival of humanity in Last Chance, the thrilling sequel to New York Times bestselling author Gregg Hurwitz’s YA debut, The Rains.

The New York Times bestselling author of Orphan X, Gregg Hurwitz, returns to Creek’s Cause to follow the Rains brothers as they fight an alien threat that has transformed everyone over the age of 18 into ferocious, zombie-like beings, in this thrilling sequel to The Rains.

Battling an enemy not of this earth, Chance and Patrick become humanity’s only hope for salvation.

 

Praise for RAINS

“The Rains is one of those all-too-creepy-and-believable stories that leaves you looking in your backyard for the next strange weed to poke through the ground. Chilling!”—Ridley Pearson, New York Times bestselling author

MY REVIEW

I received an ARC from Tor Teen via Jean Book Nerd Blog Tours for an honest review. What follows is my opinion. I wasn’t compensated at all.

Talk about an edge of your seat action packed read. I don’t think I’ve ever read a book by Hurwitz before this one, but now I think I’ll be looking into more.

Even though this is a second book (the first of which I hadn’t read), I wasn’t pulled away from the story and I wasn’t pulled away from the characters. The book instantly begins at a high emotional and action scene. We are being dragged with Chance towards the current Drone base of operations.

Right off the bat, you see what exactly was at stake and throughout the book, we learn what could possibly save the world from total destruction.

A science fiction/horror, this book doesn’t hide away from gore. If anything, it is gore galore. All within reason, mind you.

I was at the edge of my seat reading, reading during meals, and even reading past my usual bedtime. All because I wanted to see what was going to happen with Chance, Patrick, and Alex. Even right now, the book is fresh on my mind, pushing back anything else but to write this review. I’m not even sure if I finished processing what I’ve read to make a good opinion, but this book really grabbed me and took me on a wild ride.

I’m not a huge sci-fi fan, but apparently I love the post apocalyptic reads with aliens taking over. This book does remind me of another author I’ve read, but the stories aren’t too similar. It’s just the emotions from that author (N.W. Harris) and Gregg Hurwitz’s book are very similar. If you love one, you’ll love the other, that’s all I meant.

That said… holy cow. This is definitely a great ending to a story and an ending that you don’t necessarily need the beginning of to feel and witness all that happens. A definite read for new and old readers of Gregg Hurwitz. I’m going to have to read something fairly light now.

EXCERPT from LAST CHANCE by Gregg Hurwitz
Tor Teen, 2017

I barely had time to pull my gaze north when a meteor streaked down and embedded itself in the parking lot across from the other one. The earth shook. The few remaining cars were knocked onto their sides. The meteor plowed up a wake of asphalt.

It rested there, smoldering, the air around it gone wavy with heat.

Then it cracked open with a popping noise.

The jagged exterior hid the smooth orb of a cockpit inside. As the meteor hinged wide, I saw her inside, a sleek black form, slender legs drawn up to her chest.

The Queen uncoiled from the cockpit.

My guts turned to ice.

We’d risked everything to kill the last Queen, and here was another one, plopped down from the heavens to take her place. How many more were there? What had we even been thinking? The fight suddenly felt pointless. Not that I’d be around much longer to worry about it.

The Queen’s lustrous black suit held a vaguely feminine shape. She walked so gracefully that she practically glided across the ground. The closer she got, the taller she seemed.

At last she loomed over me.

“You are Chance Rain.” Her voice was digitized, feminine and yet seemingly without life. Amplitude bars flickered across her tinted face mask with each syllable. The helmet itself seemed to be translating. “You are one of the two.” She wasn’t asking; she was telling me.

I swallowed hard, managed to move my head up and down.

“Where is Patrick Rain?”

I felt my mouth start to wobble, so I bit down on my cheek. Warmth spilled through my mouth. “He’s dead.”

Copyright 2017 by Gregg Hurwitz

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
 

Gregg Hurwitz is the New York Times bestselling author of 18 novels, including HELLBENT (2018). His novels have been shortlisted for numerous literary awards, graced top ten lists, and have been published in 30 languages.

He is also a New York Times Bestselling comic book writer, having penned stories for Marvel (Wolverine, Punisher) and DC (Batman, Penguin). Additionally, he’s written screenplays for or sold spec scripts to many of the major studios (including the upcoming THE BOOK OF HENRY), and written, developed, and produced television for various networks. Gregg resides in Los Angeles.

Photo Content from Gregg Hurwitz

Book Blitz: Deadlands: Boneyard by Seanan McGuire

The newest book based on the hit Weird West RPG franchise Deadlands!

Step right up to see the oddities and marvels of The Blackstone Family Circus and Travelling Wonder Show! Gasp at pit wasps the size of a man’s forearm. Beware the pumpkin-headed corn stalker, lest it plant its roots in you!

Annie Pearl is the keeper of oddities, the mistress of monsters. Her unique collection of creatures is one of the circus’s star attractions, drawing wide-eyed crowds at every small frontier town they visit. But Annie is also a woman running from her past . . . and the mother of a mute young daughter, Adeline, whom she will do anything to protect.

Hoping to fill its coffers before winter sets in, the circus steers its wagons to The Clearing, a remote community deep in the Oregon wilderness, surrounded by an ominous dark wood. Word is that a traveling show can turn a tidy profit at The Clearing, but there are whispers, too, of unexplained disappearances that afflict one out of every four shows that pass through the town.

The Clearing has it secrets, and so does Annie. And it may take everything she has to save her daughter―and the circus―from both.

EXCERPT from Deadlands: Boneyard

At the back of the train—not quite the end, which was reserved for the wagons containing the dancing bear, the aging lion, the strange, terrible creatures of the oddities wagon, and the human attractions of the freak show—a small wagon bounced along, pulled by a pair of mules. One wore a straw hat. It was the sort of foolish affectation adored by children everywhere, and the mule bore up with stoic silence, plodding ever onward. Like so many of the teams in the circus train, the pair had been tied to the wagon ahead of them.

Unlike so many of the wagons around them, the occupants of this one were awake. Sadly so: Annie Pearl, mistress of the freak show, feeder of lions and bears and whatever else she was asked to care after, sat restless and awake beside her daughter’s narrow bunk, mouth pursed tight in worry.

“You’ll feel better if you take your medicine,” she said, in the cajoling, hopeful tone that has belonged to mothers since the very dawn of humanity. “Come along, now, Delly-my-dear. Be a good girl, and let me soothe your throat.”

Adeline shook her head. The wagon lights struck stubborn glints off her dark doe’s eyes. Annie sighed. Seven years old and the girl was still stubborn as a post, and twice as difficult to budge.

“I know you don’t like the taste of it, but there’s nothing to be done for that,” Annie said. “When we come to the next town, I’ll see if I can’t set enough aside to buy you some cherry syrup. Won’t that be fine?”

Adeline eyed her mistrustfully. She knew her mother well enough to know that an offer of that sort always came with strings attached.

“But you have to take your medicine now.”

Adeline frowned and shook her head fiercely, raising her right hand in the sign that meant ‘no.’

This time, Annie’s sigh was heavier. “Delly, you won’t sleep until you take your medicine. Until you sleep, I won’t sleep. If I don’t sleep tonight, I won’t be able to handle the bears in the morning. Do you want your poor old mother to be eaten by bears?”

Adeline giggled soundlessly at the thought before signing, ‘Bears would get sick on you.’

“Yes, probably, and then where would you be? Another circus orphan, and you can’t even sing for your supper. Really, you’re much better off simply keeping me alive, which means letting me give you your medicine so we can both get some sleep tonight.”

Adeline rolled her eyes. Recognizing the first signs of a pending concession, Annie sat back and waited.

Copyright © 2017 by Seanan McGuire

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
 

Seanan McGuire was born in Martinez, California, and raised in a wide variety of locations, most of which boasted some sort of dangerous native wildlife. Despite her almost magnetic attraction to anything venomous, she somehow managed to survive long enough to acquire a typewriter, a reasonable grasp of the English language, and the desire to combine the two. The fact that she wasn’t killed for using her typewriter at three o’clock in the morning is probably more impressive than her lack of death by spider-bite.

Often described as a vortex of the surreal, many of Seanan’s anecdotes end with things like “and then we got the anti-venom” or “but it’s okay, because it turned out the water wasn’t that deep.” She has yet to be defeated in a game of “Who here was bitten by the strangest thing?,” and can be amused for hours by almost anything. “Almost anything” includes swamps, long walks, long walks in swamps, things that live in swamps, horror movies, strange noises, musical theater, reality TV, comic books, finding pennies on the street, and venomous reptiles. Seanan may be the only person on the planet who admits to using Kenneth Muir’s Horror Films of the 1980s as a checklist.

Seanan is the author of the October Daye urban fantasies, the InCryptid urban fantasies, and several other works both stand-alone and in trilogies or duologies. In case that wasn’t enough, she also writes under the pseudonym “Mira Grant.” For details on her work as Mira, check out MiraGrant.com.

In her spare time, Seanan records CDs of her original filk music (see the Albums page for details). She is also a cartoonist, and draws an irregularly posted autobiographical web comic, “With Friends Like These…“, as well as generating a truly ridiculous number of art cards. Surprisingly enough, she finds time to take multi-hour walks, blog regularly, watch a sickening amount of television, maintain her website, and go to pretty much any movie with the words “blood,” “night,” “terror,” or “attack” in the title. Most people believe she doesn’t sleep.

Seanan lives in an idiosyncratically designed labyrinth in the Pacific Northwest, which she shares with her cats, Alice and Thomas, a vast collection of creepy dolls and horror movies, and sufficient books to qualify her as a fire hazard. She has strongly-held and oft-expressed beliefs about the origins of the Black Death, the X-Men, and the need for chainsaws in daily life.

Years of writing blurbs for convention program books have fixed Seanan in the habit of writing all her bios in the third person, so as to sound marginally less dorky. Stress is on the “marginally.” It probably doesn’t help that she has so many hobbies.

Seanan was the winner of the 2010 John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer, and her novel Feed (as Mira Grant) was named as one of Publishers Weekly’s Best Books of 2010. In 2013 she became the first person ever to appear five times on the same Hugo Ballot.

Photo Credit: Beckett Gladney

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Book Tour: Ten Thousand Points of Light by Michelle Warren

 

 

Title: Ten Thousand Points of Light
Author: Michelle Warren
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: October 18, 2017
Blurb
Five years
ago an unthinkable tragedy slashed Cait London’s life into two parts: before
she had amnesia and after. Determined to keep her past hidden and start
over, she moves to Chicago and plunges into a new job—all while keeping a
walled distance from everyone she meets.
It’s not
long before Cait reconsiders her solitary existence, and soon she’s stepping
beyond her boundaries and taking unthinkable chances, like crushing on her
impossibly sexy landlord, Evan Wade. He’s flirty, annoying, and with him living
in the same apartment building, she can’t stop thinking about him. If she can
sleep with him once, perhaps she can get him out of her system. The problem is,
Evan seems bulletproof to her advances. As the two develop a connection, it
becomes clear Cait may not succeed before her heart remembers what it feels
like to love.
Ten
Thousand Points of Light
is an immersive contemporary romance about the intensity of first
loves, the heartache of loss, and the power of forgiveness.
MY REVIEW

I received an ARC for an honest review. What follows is my opinion and no, I wasn’t compensated for this review. Unless you consider enjoying a read, but no, there was no monetary compensation.

Releasing today, yes, today, is Michelle Warren’s newest book, Ten Thousand Points of Light. This book is a contemporary romance about a woman trying to piece her past and embrace a new future. In the course of this journey, Cait London also attempts to do what she’s felt was the impossible . . . seduction.

So, this is going to be one of those cases where I’m going to have trouble not spoiling. If you’re wondering why, it’s because I really enjoyed this book. The blurb and story point of amnesia makes you feel that this book is going to have a lot of tears, emotions, and be a rather dark read for a romance. That said, it wasn’t.

It does have those emotions and possible tears, but the core of the book was filled with smiles and laughter. I found myself cheering on the characters, wanting to be Aggie’s best friend, and engulfing the last half of the book in one sitting.

And what more, I want more. I really do. I don’t really want or need more of Cait’s story, but I want to know more about the supporting cast. They didn’t feel cookie cutter. They felt real. All of the characters. This is a book that has the fluff, the soul, and the heart of a good read. I would recommend this for my mom (who I don’t usually have books for to recommend).

Michelle Warren, you have mastered the contemporary romance with this. I thought I loved your Seraphina Parrish Trilogy (young adult time travel, a must read for YA fans), but you have proved me that it isn’t just those books. I think you are going to be an instabuy for me. My poor, poor wallet.

Purchase Links
AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU
Free in Kindle Unlimited
Excerpt
In my bathroom, a man kneels on the floor inspecting a gigantic hole of exposed pipes with the roaming beam of a flashlight. I fold my arms and lean into the doorframe.
When I left to meet Aggie everything was functioning. My gaze examines the small room, picking out details: my expensive towels soak up a deluge of water pooling on the tiled floor, there’s a large pile of powdery, crumbled drywall, and then there’s the issue of ass crack—in my face. It is toned and tight, but still, it’s connected to my landlord, Evan Wade.
“Pipes burst, leaking a damn waterfall into 5A,” he says, not bothering to glance my direction.
“Did you have to use my good towels?” I purse my lips.
“I thought about using your sexy lingerie.” He eyes the laundry basket of delicates now sitting on top of the sink. “But the fancy towels seemed like a better option.”
Thanks, appreciate it.” I sidestep him, snatch the basket, and carry it to my bedroom, hiding it in my closet. If he had scrutinized it closer, which he probably did, he would have found an embarrassing amount of granny panties and more sports bras than a Lululemon.
“How long before it’s fixed?” How long before I can get rid of you?
“A week,” his muffled voice answers.
“What?” I race back only to find his sharky grin. Two vertical dimples slice beneath a permanent, mocha-colored five o’clock shadow. They punctuate his bronzy sun-kissed skin, making his caramel eyes gleam with amused delight. My gaze intensifies.

Book Tour: Rise of the Dawnstar by Farah Oomerbhoy

The Rise of the Dawnstar
Farah Oomerbhoy
(The Avalonia Chronicles #2)
Publication date: April 24th 2017
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult

Aurora Firedrake returns in the spellbinding sequel to The Last of the Firedrakes.

The seven kingdoms of Avalonia are crumbling and evil is spreading across the land like a plague. Queen Morgana is close to finding a way to open The Book of Abraxas and it’s only a matter of time until she uses the power trapped inside its pages to enslave the entire world.

With Avalonia growing more dangerous by the day, Aurora must travel through war-torn lands and deep into the heart of the fae kingdom of Elfi. Her goal is to find a legendary weapon infused with the last of the realm’s ancient magic—the only weapon in the world powerful enough to stop the queen.

Aurora might have survived her first battle against Morgana, but the true fight to save her kingdom and restore her throne has only just begun…

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

I received a copy of this book through Xpresso Book Tours for an honest review. Everything that follows is my opinion.

I should first begin that I didn’t read the first book. I didn’t even realize it was a second until I had the book in my inbox. Even though I should pay attention to those little details, I wasn’t in the least lost in the deluge of backstory. Nope, this book starts where the first ends (I assume) and you are pulled in.

I wasn’t confused and I wasn’t upset when I read.

That said, I found this book to be a fun Hero’s Journey fantasy. There’s plenty of action, a princess with immense power, and plenty of good looking gentlemen to keep your fancy. When I say plenty of good looking gentlemen, no worries. This wasn’t a case of every guy finds this girl attractive and wants to be with her. I didn’t feel the need to roll my eyes. These were just guys helping out a young woman on her journey to her grandmother’s kingdom.

Like I said above, there is plenty of action. I loved the action scenes that not only was Aurora stuck in, but participated in. She isn’t a powerful character who gets protected and doesn’t do anything (I’ve read too many of those heroines). Oh no, this girl is a scrapper. She fights, she talks smack, and she is fiercely devoted to people who help her.

Despite facing some prejudices in Elfi, the Fae country, Aurora is an ally to the Fae people. She sets aside their distrust and proves herself to be a person of worth. I like that in a character. She’s trusting, but fights when she needs to. It’s a refreshing read instead of a character who supposedly has power, but doesn’t do anything about it.

In the end, I’m finding myself wanting to read the first book. Not to find anything I may have lost, but just so I can say I have read what Oomerbhoy has written so far. Will I be reading the third? Absolutely.

Author Bio:

Farah Oomerbhoy is the international bestselling author of The Avalonia Chronicles. Her first book, The Last of the Firedrakes, was originally published on Wattpad where it gained nearly two million reads and a Watty Award. Since publication, her debut has gone on to win a silver medal in IBPA’s Benjamin Franklin Awards and the Readers’ Favorite Book Awards, along with winning a finalist placement in the USA Best Book Awards. Farah loves the fantastical and magical and often dreams of living in Narnia, Neverland, or the Enchanted Forest. With a master’s degree in English literature from the University of Mumbai, Farah spends her creative time crafting magical worlds for young adults. She lives with her family in Mumbai, India.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

 

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Book #102: Little Red and the Wolf by Alison Paige

Who said being eaten by the big bad wolf was a bad thing?

Maizie Hood struggles to keep her bakery turning a profit, her landlord from evicting her, and her dear Granny in a nursing facility. Wrestling with the decision to sell Gran s cottage is hard enough. The last thing she needs is her childhood big-bad-wolf nightmares turning into real-life adult fantasies. Sexy businessman Gray Lupo s sudden interest just makes matters worse. Is he the answer to her problems, or just a wolf in gentleman s Armani?

Since his wife was killed twenty-one years ago, Gray s life has been focused on two things: protecting the pack and avoiding the grown daughter of his wife s killers. When it becomes clear he can t do one without compromising the other, Gray finds playing big bad wolf to Maizie Hood s Little Red is a role he enjoys far more than he expected.

A real bad wolf s attack on Maizie changes everything. Gray can t deny the pull she has on his instincts and his heart. Suddenly he finds himself taking on a role he never thought he d want, as her protector and mate. Until the truth about his connection to her nightmarish past comes to light “

I was in need of something fairly light and I was out of harlequins. That said, I did have this erotica lying around from a random thrift store buy. Since I’m still doing Book Battle on Facebook (seriously, if you love reading challenges, check it out) and I needed a werewolf love interest, this sounded the best quick read.

I’m actually a big Little Red Riding Hood fan. I know the stories that may have inspired the original fairy tale and I know what the story could be about in general. And, I do love the idea of an adult little red riding hood with a werewolf. Emphasis on werewolf. I DO NOT condone beastiality. That’s nasty.

That said, there were moments when this book made me uncomfortable. There is a scene in the cottage where Maizie Hood meets a wolf face to face. The wolf is . . . lets just say, amorous. This wolf gets a little tongue happy. LUCKILY, it didn’t get to places that was seriously disturbing, but it was still a scene that made me a bit uneasy.

The rest of the story wasn’t too bad. There was a bunch of sex scenes, which is par to the course. The story itself was decent. Grey Lupo is trying to secure his pack’s land and the dynamics of the pack, but is having trouble with. Maizie is trying to secure her grandmother’s elderly care and her own financial troubles. These details could have made more meat for the story, but the sex and quasi-instinctual love is what takes center stage.

I mean, I wasn’t expecting more than that. So, ultimately, the book was what I was expecting. There were funny scenes and I enjoyed it enough to keep going. On the plus, it was a very quick read.

Book Tour (With Excerpt): Death of the Kona Man by Catherine Bruns

Death of the Kona Man
Aloha Lagoon Mysteries Book 9
by Catherine Bruns
Genre: Cozy Mystery
From USA Today bestselling author Catherine Bruns comes the next deadly
delicious Carrie Jorgenson adventure in paradise…

Carrie Jorgenson is living the dream in Hawaii. She has a steady job as a
waitress at the Loco Moco Café, a hot new love interest in her
manager, and the curtain’s about to rise on her role in a local
theater production. But when she’s asked to deliver food to a guest
at the Aloha Lagoon resort—who then drops dead!—her dreams
quickly become the stuff of nightmares.
World renowned food critic Randolph Cremshaw has no shortage of enemies.
He’s rude, patronizing, and famous for his one-star reviews. After
the coffee Carrie delivers is discovered to have been poisoned, she
and the café quickly rise to the top of the suspects list. A jealous
co-worker, thefts at the restaurant, and a performance that threatens
to blow up in Carrie’s face only make things worse. With an already
full plate, Carrie is also forced into making a decision that may
change everything for her. But this all pales in comparison when she
comes face to face with Randolph’s killer and what might be the final
curtain call…of her life.
Recipes included!
**Suggested to Read Death of the Big Kahuna first!**
**On sale from Oct 10th – 17th!**

Vivian and I started to read the article silently to ourselves. It was entitled, “You’d Have to Be Loco to Eat Here,” by Randolph Cremshaw.

Okay, this was not going to end well.

As my faithful readers know, Hawaii was my home for several years. I enjoy the tropical climate and always stay at the elegant Aloha Lagoon Resort whenever I return to the beautiful island of Kauai. I don’t typically review cafés, but a recent visit to the Loco Moco, which wears the name “loco” well, has forced my hand.

The history of this restaurant itself is an interesting one, to say the least. The place was originally owned by George Kama, who then sold it to Maya and Sampson Akamu. The couple was killed shortly afterward in a car accident, and their son Hale ran the place solo for about twenty years. Hale himself was murdered a couple of months ago, inside the actual restaurant. Now if that wasn’t enough to make you never want to look at a plate of their pork hash again, this is what I have to say about my recent dining experience at the hole-in-the wall establishment:

Pass. That’s all.

Service—Three stars. The server was attractive and pleasant but totally inept. I have my doubts that she could manage to walk and chew gum at the same time.

Beverages—One star. When I am served coffee in the beautiful state of Hawaii, it should not be in the form of mud, but a beverage that consists of freshly ground Kona beans. Eventually I did receive the latter after complaint, but the experience was already ruined for me. A bitter disappointment—yes, pun intended.

Cleanliness—Two stars. The best I can say is that the table wasn’t sticky, and the server was nice enough not to place her gum underneath it.

Quality of food—Zero stars. That moment when you ask for ketchup but receive Tabasco sauce instead…well, what else is there left to say, except that I left the place in burning anger. Yes, another pun for you.

Average these ratings together and you come up with 1 ½ stars, or in my opinion a complete failure, so don’t waste your time and hard-earned money here. Look elsewhere.

Skip the Loco Moco Café. You’ll thank me for it later.

Vivian covered her mouth with one hand as she finished reading, and I sucked in some air. This would no doubt be very damaging to the café. I silently fumed about the line that stated the server couldn’t walk and chew gum at the same time. Excuse me? I never chewed gum while I was working. What a jerk.

“How are Terry and Ava taking this?” I wondered if Keanu knew as well.

Poncho pressed his lips together tightly. “Not well. You just missed the latest episode of Terry’s screaming. I think Ava has managed to calm him down for the moment. The one thing they seem very curious about is how Tabasco sauce ended up in the ketchup holder.” He glanced piteously at both of us.

“I didn’t do it,” Vivian said quickly.

I shook my head back. “I filled some the other day, but I’m positive it was ketchup.” I distinctly remembered pouring the contents from the large container into the holders.

Poncho muttered something indistinguishable under his breath. “Anna filled a few the other day as well. Terry just called his royal highness—Cremshaw. Would you believe the man had the gall to tell Terry that he might remove the post from his blog if we would deliver breakfast and dinner to his room today? I am in the process of placing the breakfast items on a rolling cart. Carrie, he asked that it be delivered by the girl with the soulful dark eyes who waited on him the other day.”

A giant knot formed in the pit of my stomach. Great. Ava and Terry were probably upstairs right now throwing me under the bus for the ketchup incident. How I wished Keanu was here. I’d asked him what had happened after they’d found us kissing—nothing, he’d assured me, and left it at that.

“Lovely.” What was up with this guy anyhow? He didn’t like me but commented that I had soulful eyes? Was he a pervert in disguise? I didn’t want to go to his room alone. “Do I really have to wait on that creep again? I thought that food critics weren’t allowed to say such nasty things. “Can’t he be sued for slander because of the remarks he made about the Akamus?” Mercifully, he hadn’t identified me by name.

Poncho did a palms-up. “Ava and Terry are only concerned with giving the man whatever he wants right now. He is a freelance food critic and contributes to the most popular cooking magazine in the world. In short, he gets away with murder, and there’s nothing we can do about it.”

Vivian snickered as she helped us load the food onto the cart. “I bet he’s got more than a few people that would like to murder him.”

Poncho snorted. “It is tempting, ho’aloha. Believe me.”

About Aloha Lagoon:
**Books can be read in any order and they’re from multiple authors!**
There’s trouble in paradise…
Welcome to Aloha Lagoon, one of Hawaii’s hidden treasures. A little bit of
tropical paradise nestled along the coast of Kauai, this resort town
boasts luxurious accommodation, friendly island atmosphere…and only
a slightly higher than normal murder rate. While mysterious
circumstances may be the norm on our corner of the island, we’re
certain that our staff and Lagoon natives will make your stay in
Aloha Lagoon one you will never forget! visit us at
www.alohalagoonmysteries.com
The Aloha Lagoon Mysteries:
Ukulele Murder (book #1)
Murder on the Aloha Express (book #2)
Deadly Wipeout (book #3)
Deadly Bubbles in the Wine (book #4)
Mele Kalikimaka Murder (book #5)
Death of the Big Kahuna (book #6)
Ukulele Deadly (book #7)
Bikinis & Bloodshed (book #8)
Death of the Kona Man (book #9)
Catherine is the USA Today best selling author of the Cookies & Chance
mysteries. She lives in New York with her very patient husband, three
sons, and assorted cats and dogs. Catherine has a B.A. in English and
is a former newspaper reporter and press release writer. She also
writes the Cindy York and the Aloha Lagoon (Carrie Jorgenson)
mysteries. Her next Cookies & Chance mystery, Silenced by Sugar,
releases in January 2018.
Follow the tour HERE
for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!

Book #101: The Turn of the Screw by Henry James

A very young woman’s first job: governess for two weirdly beautiful, strangely distant, oddly silent children, Miles and Flora, at a forlorn estate…An estate haunted by a beckoning evil.

Half-seen figures who glare from dark towers and dusty windows- silent, foul phantoms who, day by day, night by night, come closer, ever closer. With growing horror, the helpless governess realizes the fiendish creatures want the children, seeking to corrupt their bodies, possess their minds, own their souls…

But worse-much worse- the governess discovers that Miles and Flora have no terror of the lurking evil.

For they want the walking dead as badly as the dead want them.

I actually had been wanting to read this book for a while now. When the criteria came up for October’s Book Battle had a Public Domain book, I knew I had to go for it. Especially with a horror of some kind. Since, The Turn of the Screw was not only short, but also in audio in my library, I went for that one. Besides, like I said, I had been wanting to read this book for a while.

I’ll be honest, I’m not sure what the horror really was. Yes, there are spirits and the spirits are alarming (eerie, creepy, and just don’t feel right), however, I didn’t quite understand the spirits’ motives. Not that a spirit needs a motive per se, but the story left open a plethora of possibilities that made me wonder just what the spirits were all about.

At first, I was thinking possession. Though that does seem to be the case in some parts (not going to go deeper than that), possession wasn’t a common horror choice in the era the story was written. Then, I was thinking the spirits were wanting to continue their inappropriate relationship with the children. Which, does seem to be the case as well, but my sick and twisted mind kept wondering what exactly these two people did to these children that was inappropriate (aside from pushing them away from societal norms).

I finally decided that I am left with how the book ends. In a resolution that there will never be a correct answer. We never really find out the deeper meaning of the spirits. Just like in life, we don’t always find the deeper meaning in the normal going ons. And though there is a resolution, it is a sad one and leaves the reader empty. Just as it leaves the female unnamed narrator.

Did I like the book? Yes, I think I did. Did I find it fulfilling? In its own way, yes. However, it isn’t what you find in modern ghost stories where the main character finds the crux of the spirit’s motives and finds a way to combat them. No, this is a story that feels almost realistic in its lack of complete resolution.

I find that to be the scariest part in this book.

Book #100: The Werewolf of Fever Swamp by R.L. Stine

Something weird is happening in Fever Swamp. Something really horrible. It started with the strange howling at night. Then there was the rabbit, torn to shreds. Everyone thinks Grady’s new dog is responsible. After all, he looks just like a wolf. And he seems a little on the wild side. But Grady knows his dog is just a regular old dog. And most dogs don’t howl at the moon. Or disappear at midnight. Or change into terrifying creatures when the moon is full. Or do they?

Talk about dating myself. 🙂 I’m serious here. I probably read this book in . . . oh gosh, the second grade? Maybe third? Either way, it was shortly after it’s original publication. Back when Goosebumps was the serious shit. So, why did I decide to read it again?

Well, I’m doing an awesome game (I’m bias about it for reasons) where you read through a criteria and gain points. You are reading with a team, you get to meet new readers, and you get to find out what other people would suggest. It’s great fun! On top of all that, you get a bookmark or a small prize of some kind just for participation.

If you are interested, look up Book Battle on Facebook. I’m an Admin and the current Team Werewolf leader.

Anyways, this book was suggested (which I totally forgot about) for the criteria “Childhood Favorite w/ 100+ pages” I figured a quick, not even one day read, was perfect to gain five points for my team.

And let me tell you, the nostalgia was palpable. I felt like that little girl eating up books like a madman. The story itself wasn’t as amazing as I remember, but it has that Goosebumps quality that makes a good R.L. Stine fan smile.

Would I read more Stine books? Yes, I would. Would I read this book to Bug or recommend Goosebumps to kids? ABSOLUTELY. This one is probably the less creepy of Goosebumps reads, but I would definitely read this to Bug. Even if it’s silly from the pure 90’s setting.

Book #99: Final Girls by Riley Sager

Ten years ago, college student Quincy Carpenter went on vacation with five friends and came back alone, the only survivor of a horror movie–scale massacre. In an instant, she became a member of a club no one wants to belong to—a group of similar survivors known in the press as the Final Girls. Lisa, who lost nine sorority sisters to a college dropout’s knife; Sam, who went up against the Sack Man during her shift at the Nightlight Inn; and now Quincy, who ran bleeding through the woods to escape Pine Cottage and the man she refers to only as Him. The three girls are all attempting to put their nightmares behind them, and, with that, one another. Despite the media’s attempts, they never meet.

Now, Quincy is doing well—maybe even great, thanks to her Xanax prescription. She has a caring almost-fiancé, Jeff; a popular baking blog; a beautiful apartment; and a therapeutic presence in Coop, the police officer who saved her life all those years ago. Her memory won’t even allow her to recall the events of that night; the past is in the past. 

That is, until Lisa, the first Final Girl, is found dead in her bathtub, wrists slit, and Sam, the second, appears on Quincy’s doorstep. Blowing through Quincy’s life like a whirlwind, Sam seems intent on making Quincy relive the past, with increasingly dire consequences, all of which makes Quincy question why Sam is really seeking her out. And when new details about Lisa’s death come to light, Quincy’s life becomes a race against time as she tries to unravel Sam’s truths from her lies, evade the police and hungry reporters, and, most crucially, remember what really happened at Pine Cottage, before what was started ten years ago is finished.

Final Girls was a club read for the Admin group in my Facebook Book Club. A bunch of us wanted to read it and went ahead. From the title and blurb, it has everything I could want. There’s murder, psychological intrigue, and it deals with the mental workings of survivors.

Sadly, I found it lacking.

The book itself is written well. The sentences and story is quick to get into and it is an overall quick read. However, I felt Quincy was the only character I could have any iota of emotion for and even that, it was small. She was filled with denial, anger, pain, and had no real form of therapy to help her out.

The other characters felt like cookie cutter characters to just illustrate how fucked up Quincy was. There was one character I liked, but he was so minor that there wasn’t a lot going on with him. I was hoping to see more of the reporter, but . . . nope.

As for the chapters with Pine Cottage, those were the best ones. We see tidbits of what had happened and what made Quincy be the person she is now. These were the chapters that had me going. I wanted to know the truth, even if Quincy didn’t.

In all, the book was decent. I wouldn’t keep it in my library though. I wouldn’t mind trying to read another of Sager’s work, but I won’t go out of my way for it.