Archive for October, 2016

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The Last Drop


The Last Drop by Andrea Perno

Jeremy always said Space Academy was Earth’s last hope. People only dream of leaving a dying planet in search of better lives. Avery never expected he would be forced to do just that.

On the heels of his brother’s murder, his father’s disappearance and Earth’s dwindling water supply now contaminated with a deadly virus, Avery and his younger brother have no choice but to leave Earth behind and join the survivors migrating the nearest habitable planet.

What they don’t know is that the rarity of water extends far beyond Earth and they aren’t the only ones fighting for survival.

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My Review

5 stars

The water on Earth has been used up and the few amounts left that are not polluted are fiercely guarded. Avery lives on one of these bases and although home life is rough, being outside the base means death. After the loss of his father and brother, Avery and his brother Jace find themselves in space on their way to Panacea. Panacea is an Earthlike planet, except it is already inhabited and water is scarce there too.

As Avery trains he makes friends with another fierce fighter, Clesandra. After an incident where a native, Zap, saved them, they find themselves trying to fight against Commander Smith’s plans to eliminate any competition and to horde the remaining water.

I really enjoyed this story. Avery is filled with doubt and not wanting to become his father. Clesandra is quick and mean, just the exact opposite of Avery. The story is almost scary in the face that it could really happen with today’s events. But I loved all the detail that goes into the science part of this story.

I don’t know if this is going to be a series but I do get the feeling that there is going to be more to this book. It’s a great story and one that I recommend people checking out.

I received The Last Drop from Candid Book Reviews for free. This is in no way influenced my opinion of this book.

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Dressing a Tiger


Dressing a Tiger by Maggie San Miguel

A father (Jack Dahlstrom) serving the Mob, hit men moonlighting as babysitters, an uncle in the Secret Service, famous politicians amongst family friends, a mother in need of shock therapy, and a kid who eavesdrops and remembers it all. Maggie San Miguel shares her unique childhood in this funny and poignant memoir reminiscent of The Godfather meets Running with Scissors. Her father’s prior knowledge of the Kennedy assassination and his unique friendships with Jack Ruby, John Connally, Henry Wade and infamous Mafia bosses Carlo Gambino, Sam Giancana and Paul Castellano is a story untold until now. As a negotiator for the Teamsters Union and a high-ranking associate of the Mob, Jack Dahlstrom collected an impressive array of friends and Mafia secrets that were never meant to see the light of day. Maggie San Miguel has just opened the blinds.

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My Review

5 stars

Follow along as Maggie, as a precocious 5 year old gets tricked into going to the dentist with her father’s friend Jimmy. Jimmy is more muscle for Jack Dahlstrom but does have a soft spot for Maggie. We continue along as Maggie shares meeting the different people that her father knows and does her best to avoid a mother that clearly has mental issues.

It is clear that although Maggie is a sweet child, one night in Austria bursts the bubble of childhood and opens her eyes to the world she really is in. While we follow along with Maggie, we also learn about the origins of her mother and father, what helped lead to her mother’s mental break down and many other adventures. It is a hard world that she lived in and she had to be tough to make it though.

I loved following along with Maggie on her different adventures. The Geisha’s and the ceiling and her selling things to earn money for Christmas stand out in my mind. But her life is not easy, especially when you learn how her mother could have used some help of her own. But I loved the look inside the lives of the famous people that we only hear bits and pieces about and only through the news. It breathes life into those names that you just read a blurb on Wikipedia about.

This is a great story and one that I recommend. It’s a joy to follow Maggie as the grows and to see the inner workings behind some players in the Mob. I really liked touching on the Kennedy assassination.

I received Dressing a Tiger from the publisher for free. This has in no way influenced my opinion of this book.

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Finding Mom

Finding Mom by Amanda Mawhinney

Non-fiction, parenting, self-help, personal growth, mom self-care.

Date Published: October 6, 2016

Publisher: My Koala Pouch publishing

Vitality. Passion. Tranquility. Do any of these words currently describe you?
Finding Mom will reawaken your dreams and help you to find and reinvent yourself.

Sometimes we love being a mom, but get frustrated when motherhood takes over our life. You are a mom and so much more. That’s why it’s important to start your journey to find your purpose beyond just being a mom. Learn the secrets to finding “me time” in even your busiest days. Uncover and recover your unique mom personality with a personality quiz. Create a sustainable and effective plan for your future that your family will support. No matter how busy you are, how many kids you have, or how young your children are, this book makes finding fulfillment possible for you.

What are you waiting for? Make a difference in your life and start finding yourself today!

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Authors Bio:

Amanda Mawhinney is an author, trainer and family relationship coach. Her professional passions are helping women to develop themselves and helping families to connect and build stronger bonds. Her blog, My Koala Pouch is where she writes about creating healthier families and fun activities for kids and adults.

Amanda holds a degree in Psychology from Clarion University of Pennsylvania. She was an HR professional at a company with over 11,000 employees worldwide. She designed, created and implemented many developmental courses and an orientation program. She trained management, developed employees, facilitated mentorship programs and strengthened interdepartmental teams. Before having children of her own, Amanda worked with children with behavioral issues and their families. As an AmeriCorps volunteer she taught disabled and at- risk youth about giving back to the community and the environment.

Amanda currently homeschools her two delightful daughters and spends her days enjoying the great outdoors, reading, writing and doing fun activities with her family.

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Finding Mom Excerpt

You may think that it’s impossible to get to know yourself while your children are young and that it will be easier when your children get older. The truth is, you don’t have to wait. I took my journal to the hospital with me when I had my second child and started implementing some of my goals right after I recovered from childbirth.

Refinding myself has really changed the entirety of my life. In the year following my own personal analysis, I managed to meet my goals of becoming an author, losing all my baby weight from both kids, and strengthening my spirituality. I discovered that I do not have the patience or the real skill for crocheting; I enjoy horseback riding and quiet time in the woods. Currently, I’m working through a couch to 5K program in order to run a race in a few months. I have future aspirations of having my own successful business, learning karate, and traveling the globe.

You may be thinking, “Well, good for you, Amanda, but I’m too busy to find myself.” Maybe you work full time, homeschool, have seven kids, and make all of your food from scratch. Maybe you volunteer at church or take care of an elderly parent or a special needs child. As mothers, our list of responsibilities is endless and our unique challenges may feel insurmountable. The thing is, if you really want to make a difference in your life, you will find a way. I purposely directed this book at moms because we face unique trials, and I wanted to really zero in on how you can make a difference in your life.

The “year of Amanda,” during which I took the time to find myself, was also one of the most hectic periods of my life to date. We had a new baby, my husband got a new job, and we moved from one house to another. All of this was going on while I was still actively raising and nurturing two children. The “year of you” may be even more hectic, but we are going to work together to make it a reality.

Are you ready for the “Year of You?”

This book is designed as an informational workbook to help you on your journey toward rediscovering yourself. I know there is so much in this book that it can be a bit overwhelming. You do not have to complete all of Part 1 at one time in order to get a lot out of this book. That’s why I broke the book down into three parts. You can explore as much or as little about yourself in Part 1 as you want, while still being able to turn your areas of improvement into actionable steps and goals in Part 2. In Part 3, you can learn how to take those goals and start applying them to your life. This book isn’t meant to be something to just read and forget. I want you to be able to take whatever time you have and put it into making a real change in your life.

After reading this book, you will be able to:

  • Incorporate personal time into your daily routine (with the kids around)
  • Identify your individual qualities, stresses, and opportunities
  • Understand your personality and your family members’ personalities
  • Set achievable goals particular to your life
  • Start a realistic personal development plan
  • Become the mom you want to be

If you actively partake in this book, you will have a solid plan for becoming who you are above and beyond the beloved label of “mom.” We have a lot to cover in this book, and I’m excited to help you change your life into one that is more fulfilling. As you turn the page, bring a pen to take notes and an open mind to discover your potential.

Let’s start finding you . . .

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The Naked Tree


The Naked Tree by Morgan Lee

It was one small taste that transformed the entire history of our world. Colette is Vaporless, an Outlander. No worth. No value. All because she had no Vapors, lacked the sweet nectar of The Tree, and her heart had an extra piece. The land of Alvon is suspended high above the Earth, a judgment placed on it by Lorde, the supreme deity nearly seven Eons ago. The leaders of the Triunity, Adamek, Levi, and Eviya have created Alvon in their own image, a world deeply rooted in science, technology and pleasure. Their very lives depend on the fruit and energy given to them by the Tree of Knowl, but suddenly the tree begins to reject them and starts to deteriorate causing all humans who have eaten from the Tree to deteriorate as well. Eviya pinpoints the cause of the decay and points the finger at Colette and the Vaporless ordering for the capture and sacrifice of every Vaporless. On her quest to stay alive, Colette meets Rowan, the leader of R.H.I.S.K and joins his rebellion in an effort to save her own life. With the entire land of Alvon against them, and every human being hunting them, R.H.I.S.K. sets off toward Ilan in search of a way to stop the Triunity. Will Colette survive? Or will the Triunity succeed in recreating the perfection of their world?

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Morgan Lee J.

For more information, be sure to contact Morgan Lee.

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My Review

5 stars

In a world created by the Triunity, man is made in a lab for specific jobs. Love and compassion have been removed and now they do the job given to them, receive the Vapor from the Tree of Knowl and enjoy themselves with violence. But several years earlier, the Vaporless we found in the labs. Man without the vapors from the Tree of Knowl.

The Triunity didn’t think this would matter so they made them unimportant, more for the abuse of the Vapors. But then a child was created in the traditional way, Colette. She was hidden for most of her life. But now that the Tree of Knowl is dying, and the Vaporless are being blamed, she may be the one person that is able to save everyone.

This is an interesting story. I admit that I was a little lost at the beginning of the story, but once I figured out what was going on, the story took off. Colette has been hidden in a hole by her parents and been doing what is needed to survive. When a bounty is put on the heads of the Vaporless, her survival gets even harder. But she finds the R.H.I.S.K. and they seem to be able to help, even after capture by the Triunity.

Even though she has been beaten down, Colette refuses to give up. I cheered her as she succeeded and prayed when it looked like she going to die. This book is a great thrill ride and a great introduction to a new author. I can’t wait to read other books from Morgan Lee.

I received The Naked Tree from the author/publisher for free. This has in no way influenced my review.

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Madame Lilly, Voodoo Priestess (Volume 4) by Dormaine G.

It’s 1890 in New Orleans, a time of rich white men, sprawling plantations, Voodoo, high class parties and the unspoken Placage. Amidst the thick heat, magic and sorrow, a beautiful Creole woman exists in this cruel world. Although born free, she never knew life without the call of a ‘Master’ – until now.

Blessed with an ancient power, Madame Lily has an agenda that has galvanized her into the deepest reaches of High Society and to the darkness that is swirling with Voodoo.

Elijah is a First Made Protector tasked to guard and cleanse the world of the evils that roam. He spent millennia with only goodness in his heart until cursed – one meant to corrupt his very soul with love, obsession and infatuation… for Madame Lily, a woman that should rightfully be his adversary.

Drawn together by fate and magic, these two forces face off and sparks fly. A love that never should have been is born – a love that may change everything for both of them.

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Dormaine G.

Author’s Bio:

Dormaine was born in Long Island, New York where she lived most of her life. As an adult she liked to travel out of the country though her favorite places to explore were her fantasy worlds as an author. She may be a nurse by profession but her heart has always belonged to writing. As a young child she spent many Saturdays in the library nurturing her love for books. There she discovered her fascination for the science fiction genre, through books, movies and graphic novels.

Now she resides in Colorado with her husband and two feisty dogs. After many years of working in hospitals and travel nursing she took time off to pursue a career in writing. Her first novel “Connor” is in one of her favorite genres, young adult urban fantasy. Her second love is for horror of which she created the “Madame Lilly, Voodoo Priestess” series. This is just the start of her exploration as she stays locked up her office in Colorado spinning more tales.

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My Review

5 stars

Madame Lilly is continuing her torture of Julius and Henry. But with the knowledge of who is her family, she is going to use that to her advantage. At the same time Elijah is having second thoughts about Lilly. Because of his involvement with Sanura he blames Lilly’s current situation on himself. He know that a curse had been placed on the family but he did nothing about it. If her would have acted sooner would he have been able to change the current situation?

I admit that I cannot get enough of this series. The books are short but filled with so much. You can’t help but cheer for Lilly with everything that has happened to her. I also loved learning more about Elijah.

I can’t wait to see what happens next with Madame Lilly. This series is very addicting.

Be sure to check out the other books in the series:


Madame Lilly, Voodoo Priestess (Volume 1) by Dormaine G.

Voodoo Priestess, Madame Lilly, will get her revenge tonight even if the price is her soul.

In the late 1800’s Odara, a Creole girl in New Orleans, grew up wealthy and having the best of everything. She was taught the ways of plaçage: to be a wealthy man’s common-law wife. She didn’t want to follow the ways of plaçage as her mother had, until she met the man of her dreams, Henry Nicolas. He was handsome, charming and rich; perfect in every way until their first night of marriage when she saw his true malevolent side.

For twelve long years Odara endured abuse in the worst ways possible, taking her from a naive child to a scorned woman. A woman fueled with such revulsion towards Henry she would give anything for vengeance.

Through voodoo, Madame Lilly was born, but with it came consequences beyond even her comprehension.

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 My Review

5 stars

Odara is a beautiful Creole girl that was raised to be a placage, a dark skinned common-law wife to a white man. Even though she is strong willed and doesn’t want this life, once she meets her father’s business partner she finds herself falling for Henry Nicolas. But once she is married to him he abuses her greatly. She tries to ask for help from his wife but is spurned and others that offer to help are too afraid of Henry to be any real assistance. Twelve years later, Henry has tired of her and plans to find another woman. Odara can’t let this happen to another woman and sets about becoming Madame Lilly, Voodoo Priestess to punish Henry.

This is a quick, great read. My heart broke for Odara, here she thinks that she is finally going to be married to someone she loves and be taken care of when she is just abused. I can’t blame her for getting revenge but she doesn’t fully understand what she is getting herself into. I love the ending, it leaves open the possibility of much more to come.

I loved this story, it’s a great revenge tale, and I can’t wait to see what happens to Madame Lilly next.


Madame Lilly, Voodoo Priestess: Soulless (Volume 2)

Madame Lilly, Voodoo Priestess: Soulless Soulless and vengeful proves a lethal combination for those who have wronged her. The time is 1890, the place, New Orleans, and Odara is lost to Madame Lilly, her soulless side—and she has not finished what she started. Unleashing two great forces, Theolus and Hearon, with ferocious appetites against her common-law husband, Henry Nicholas, is just the beginning of the end for Lilly—only she doesn’t know it yet. For the spirits she raised took what was left of her humanity and left a piece of themselves within her; a piece that craves chaos. Needing to maintain control over them to do her bidding, Lilly must do what is required even if it means becoming more like them. Tortured, scorned and damned, Lilly has one mission in life: Retribution.

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My Review

5 stars

Madame Lilly is continuing to punish Henry, but first she needs to get more power so she can control Theolus and Hearon. Upon her return to the swamp, she learns that Henry’s father, Julius, has put a bounty on her head. Lilly decides to take Henry home and destroy both his and Julius’ family. But Elijah is close and is bound and determined to try and save her.

Lilly is being drawn into Theolus and Hearon’s power. She has so much rage inside her that it is easy to find comfort with them. There are hints that her great grandma Sanura had the same abilities as Lilly but no one has ever told her anything about Sanura. Although Lilly is becoming the evil creatures she has summoned you can’t help but cheer for her after everything she went through.

This is a great series of love, abuse, power, and revenge. After how Soulless ending I can’t wait to see what happens to Lilly in Sanura.


Madame Lilly, Voodoo Priestess: The Time of Sanura (Volume 3)

History always has a way of repeating itself

Madame Lilly journeys back in time to her great grandmother’s era, the time of Sanura. Both women possess more than a kinship for they are each bound by harmful spirits whom they refuse to relinquish. By the hand of a mysterious being, Elijah, Lilly is transported into the past to witness the dark path Sanura chose that ultimately lead to her demise.

While in this era, Lilly feels the turmoil Sanura endured as a young girl. Even as she fights to deny her ability to see the non-living. But the more she refuses the sight, the more the dead seem to flock. And then a dreadful accident takes place forcing her to finally accept her once unwanted gift. She soon welcomes the dead.

Through Sanura’s struggle of growing up an innocent child being forced to take on the burdens no one should undergo, she ultimately transforms into a frightfully powerfully woman. Lilly watches from afar, as Sanura grows more commanding with each act of wickedness, until her final downfall. Even then, Sanura refuses to surrender her bound spirits for they need her as much as she thought she needed them.

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My Review

5 stars

Elijah is trying to save Lilly by sending her back in time to live through her great grandmother, Sanura. We meet Sanura when she is fifteen and being sold because her master’s wifeis very jealous of her. She is sold to Dr. Smith who seems to have an extraordinary medical advantage over other people. But Sanura learns the truth and starts learning about voodoo from Mandisa a slave of Dr. Smith’s. Eventually Dr. Smith’s secret comes out and Sanura punished Dr. Smith.

Sanura decides to live in the swamp among the dead and safe from men. Sanura is approached by Quentin to save his sick wife, but the more they are around each other, and attraction starts. Eventually the fall in love and have a daughter and Quentin’s wife cannot handle the thought of her husband and Sanura. She plans on kidnapping Sofie, Sanura and Quentin’s daughter and setting Sanura on the path to the end of her life.

I love how this story just keeps getting better and better. It’s great to learn the background to the story and about Lilly’s powers. I really like Elijah and how he tries to help Saruna but things don’t work out.

I am beyond excited to see what happens in Volume 4.


I received all four volumes from Sage’s Blog Tours for free. This has in no way influenced my opinion of this series.

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More Connecticut Lore


More Connecticut Lore by Zachary Lamothe

Journey through Connecticut using this unconventional guidebook containing 82 odd locations to visit on your next outing. Travel to the far-reaching corners of the state to discover Branford’s Thimble Islands and the Beckley Furnace in East Canaan. Learn about larger-than-life characters, like the legendary strongman Elmer Bitgood and the dead-and-ghostly religious zealot Jemima Wilkinson. Read spine-tingling accounts of a Norwich area medium and the specters of Woodbury. In addition to the extraordinary stories, discover tidbits sprinkled throughout that will give you “While You’re There” ideas to add to your trip and a section highlighting destinations along the way, like restaurants, breweries, and inns. There are 45 colorful images to enhance your tour. Connecticut has plenty of strange and unusual history and folklore that will have you wandering slightly off the beaten path. Carry a big stick!

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My Review

5 stars

Planning a trip to Connecticut? Like to go to the more obscure locations to visit? Look no further, this is the book you need. You will find abandoned and forgotten, ghostly, unusual and out of the way locations. You can flip through the pages with great pictures and history of the different locations. There are little notes under “While You’re There” to give you additional stops while visiting each location.

You can also peruse the Visitor Information section to see the sites listed by their order of appearance in the book. Afraid that some might not be accessible? No worries, they are not included in the Visitor Information section.

This is a very in-depth book of out of the way and less explored locations in Connecticut. This is a great addition if you are planning a trip or like me, a great exploration of another state. This would be a great addition to any bookshelf.


I received More Connecticut Lore from Schiffer Publishing free of charge. This has not influenced my opinion of the book.

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In the Mind of Revenge (The Shamed – 1) by Liv Hadden

Release: March 5, 2016

“Mine is a tale of pain, hate, lies, murder, injustice, vengeance, and love unreturned. It began much like yours; a hopeful innocent born to a world of endless possibilities. But my journey has rarely been paved with opportunities of light. Confronted by those who sought to eclipse what light I had found, the darkness came for me. Wrapped in its intoxicating embrace, I have risen from the dead to reclaim my dignity and the life that was taken from me. I have begun my journey into the mind of revenge. Revenge for me. Revenge for those like me. Those who are shamed.”

In the Mind of Revenge, book one of The Shamed Series, takes a deep look at how monsters are born. Set in a society that glorifies “normal” and demonizes different, this dark tale takes its readers on an emotionally wild ride of vengeance, murder, pain and desperation. Though the reader is warned by its main character, Shame, not to develop an attachment, the first person narrative combined with Shame’s uninhibited vulnerability makes it nearly impossible not to do so. Raw, vivid, honest, fast-paced and beautifully vulgar, In the Mind of Revenge is sure to have you emotionally twisted from beginning to end.

This is a story for the shamed, by the shamed. The question is, are you ready for it?

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Praise for In the Mind of Revenge

“If a cat has nine lives, Shame has 29.  Liv Hadden leaves us in the dark as to whether this character is a girl or a boy.  As Shame often muses, why is gender that important? It’s reflecting on issues like gender that makes In the Mind of Revenge more than just a rather exciting read.” – Reader’s Favorite

A somber revenge tale, but fronted by a protagonist both absorbing and sublimely complicated.” – Kirkus Reviews

“In the Mind of Revenge tackles hot-button social issues in a way that forces the reader to rethink the importance of what society deems as normal.” – Self-Publishing Review

“An absorbing crime story…”  – Blue Ink Reviews

MIND BLOWING! From the first sentence, “I am ugly.” to the last sentence, “I see you.” this book had me glues to the pages. I read this book in one night.”

Fantastic roller coaster of a book. VERY visual.  There were moments where I was too in the moment and felt as if I was truly there.”

“The ambiguity that surrounds the main character’s gender/sexuality is a welcome change. It allows you to get wrapped up in the character’s development.”

“It’s like Girl with the Dragon Tattoo meets Middle Sex.  The gender ambiguity coupled with the vague use of personal pronouns was bold and executed masterfully.”

“What a relief it is to not have a completely heteronormative main character with a love interest for once, and to also have it executed so damn well.  Shame’s identity is kept under wraps masterfully by the author and I almost hope she never reveals it.”

This book sucked me in as soon as I opened it. I swung from feeling pity and heartache for Shame, to hating the character, and back again. After whipping through it in under a week, I can honestly say the novel didn’t disappoint in the least–my main problem is desperately wanting the second and third installments in the trilogy to be written NOW so I can read them!’

Liv Hadden

Liv Hadden

Debut novelist Liv Hadden has been writing ever since she was a little girl. But, it wasn’t until 5th grade when her teacher said she’d one day write a book that she started taking it seriously.

Her Shamed series began in college, when Hadden employed her writing as an outlet for her feelings during a serious bout of depression. After a brief, yet impactful first night of writing, she dreamt of a shadowy figure, tormented and demonized by their own mind and realized this was the shadow of pain that hurting people everywhere felt.

She woke from her dream feeling more energized that she had in months, picked up her computer and began to write. “I felt if ever there was a story inside me and a character worth taking the leap, it was Shame and this story,” says Hadden. “This one in particular is personal in nature, and perhaps the very reason it’s so close to my heart.”

Hadden has her roots in Burlington, Vermont  and has lived in upstate New York and Oklahoma, where she went to college at the University of Oklahoma,, and earned her degree in Environmental Sustainability Planning & Management.  She now resides in Austin, TX with her husband and two dogs, Madison and Samuel and is an active member of the Writer’s League of Texas.

Incredibly inspired by artistic expression, Hadden immerses herself in creative endeavors on a daily basis. She finds great joy in getting lost in writing and seeing others fully express themselves through their greatest artistic passions, like music, body art, dance and photography. “I get chills when I have the great privilege of seeing someone express their authentic selves,” says Hadden. “I believe it gives us a true glimpse into the souls of others.

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Q&A with Author Liv Hadden

What inspired you to write In The Mind of Revenge and The Shamed series?

The tale of this story in particular is personal in nature, and perhaps the very reason it’s so close to my heart. When I was a senior in college, I experienced my first serious bout of depression. I didn’t entirely recognize it at the time, most likely due to self-medicating with alcohol. I called it partying; I was in college, so I was allowed to. I can’t tell you how many times that year I looked myself in the mirror and didn’t recognize me, at all. Not one inch.

I was almost 200lbs, had pushed away all my friends, could not get a job in my chosen field (environmental sustainability) and had absolutely no sense of who I was or who I wanted to be. One drunk night I decided I would write how I was feeling. It started with, “I am ugly.” I wrote about a paragraph, then went to sleep. That night I dreamt of a dark shadowy figure, one tormented and demonized by their own mind. This figure began to take shape, and at first I thought it was a shadow version of myself. Then, I understood it wasn’t just me. It was everyone.

This shadow was all the pain of everyone who was hurting. It was lonely, scared and ashamed. The next morning, I woke up feeling way more energized than I had in months, so I picked up my computer and started writing. I wrote anytime I was feeling lost, crappy, bored, horny…didn’t matter the feeling, if I felt compelled to write, I would.

I felt if ever there was a story inside me and a character worth taking the leap, it was Shame and this story. After years of writing, I really sat down and applied the story to paper. Three months of hard work later, I had a complete manuscript, and here we are now. It’s surreal and exciting!

You hit your readers hard with some pretty shocking topics. What do you think they’ll find the most surprising about In the Mind of Revenge?

I think the blunt nature of the writing will be jarring and/or refreshing, depending on who the reader is. I’d like to think the most surprising thing will be the lack of certainty of the gender of the character, ultimately leading to the conclusion that it doesn’t matter. Because it doesn’t!

Tell us about Shame and how you utilize your main character to drive home your message.

I chose to write the book in first person specifically so it would really be a dive into the mind of revenge. Because we have such an intimate, vulnerable look at the deepest, darkest places of Shame’s mind, it’s hard to decide from page to page whether you have hate or empathy for the character. I also created some contrast with the personalities Shame seems to draw in. They are very vocal, relatively clear on what they want/who they are, and are “good” (relatively speaking). Shame lacks self-awareness and the entire book is seen through this tunnel vision that I think speaks to the idea that A. revenge isn’t simple, gratifying or worth it and B. the pain and hurt Shame feels can only be healed when Shame is ready to address it and really see things from the inside out.

Does any of the book come from personal experience?

There are definitely bits & pieces of the story that are inspired by things I have experienced. I find that true of all my writing. However, I was never bullied the way Shame was, nor have I ever been on a bloody, self-destructive vengeance rampage. Four of the primary female characters (Cassie, Anna, Margaret & Sawyer) are named after my cousins, though their likenesses were not used.

Did you have to do any special research for your book?

I didn’t have to do much. A lot was inspired by the surge of bullying related suicides and school shootings since I was in elementary school. I grew up in a time where hearing of mass shootings was just “part of the nightly news”. It makes me sick, and I used my writing as an outlet for my anger, sadness and despair about my lack of ability to do much to change things. These are realities I grew up with, so the research was just living.

That’s an incredible motivation, and what a cool way to turn your frustrations into such a thrilling book! It’s shocking how things like that have really become ‘the norm’.

The thing that surprises me the most is that we (U.S. citizens) are STILL victim shaming. We still maintain it’s the woman’s fault for wearing that skirt, or the young gay boy’s fault for being on social media, or the transgender girl’s fault for not waiting until she graduated.

They’re issues that affect everyone there, so your book really appeals to anyone, of any age – especially given the vagueness of Shame’s gender.

I believe a reader’s experience is very personal to them, so I think my story is unique by supplying a genderless, ethnicity ambiguous character. Anyone can put themselves in this person’s shoes. I also think a lot of the issues surrounding bullying, gender fluidity and sexuality in the book are very relevant to today’s society and topics that need to be highlighted until they aren’t even topics anymore.

Since this is part of a series, did you craft parts of In the Mind of Revenge with other pieces of future books in the series? If so – what were they?

Yes and no. When I sit down to write, I just kind of let things happen. Once they’re written, I then create possibilities. So, I keep the future in the mind, but don’t craft a storyline based on where I think it’s going. I let it take me where it needs to go.

Sometimes, I have had an idea and it went in a totally different direction. I did leave several story details open purposefully: 1. To create the tunnel vision storyline of being in the mind of revenge and 2. Leave a lot of places for Shame to explore. For example, Shame hasn’t been paying attention to body changes outside of the current situation. In one part of the book, Shame is shot, but then we never hear about it again. Weird. How could someone be shot and forget about it? We’ll have to wait & see…

Can you tell us what readers can expect in book two, From the Mouth of Decay?

I am introducing a new narrator, so the story will come from two perspectives instead of one. We’ll learn more about what really happened to Shame the night of the attack, the results of the experimental surgery, and will also uncover more about Cassie and the life she has been living.

Instead of being so wrapped up in Shame’s world, we are going to start to see what’s happening at large because Shame is starting to see that. It’s a new awakening within Shame that causes the character to emerge from the small, clouded world of hate and regain pieces of the soul that used to be.


Audio Excerpt

Check out an excerpt from the audiobook here.

giveaway-domains-hostingSignup on Facebook here for the chance to win an audiobook, ebook or  of In the Mind of Revenge.

I was lucky enough to be invited to be part of this tour from Sami at Roger Charlie. I should have a review of the audiobook shortly.

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Stage Left (Bright Lights Billionaire – 1) by Ali Parker

From Best Selling Author, Ali Parker comes a new Billionaire Series filled with sexiness, humor and intense attraction…

Ethan Lewis has been in the bright lights for as long as he can remember. He’s just turned the cusp of celebrating his twenty-fourth birthday, and yet he feels more like eighty. Living the life of a celebrity isn’t all it is chalked up to be, and dealing with the unruly number of women who are more interested in his billions than who he is as a person is getting old. He has resigned himself to giving up on love and focusing on the only thing that truly gives back – his career.

Riley Phillips has always dreamed of being on a big stage with the warmth of the spotlight baring down on her, but she just couldn’t seem to catch the right agent’s attention. After giving a quick commencement speech as Valedictorian of her graduating class at Billmore High, she’s offered something she can’t refuse… The chance to work in Hollywood. It’s not all it’s chalked up to be, but she works hard and finally gets her big break four years down the line. There is a new movie that her agent wants her to audition for, and her co-star? The dreamy Ethan Lewis.

She scores the part, but soon regrets it due to his callous, overbearing persona. He’s nothing like the public touts, and she for one isn’t impressed.

Funny enough, he is – immensely.

This is book 1 in a continued series.

18+ Explicit sexual content and possible foul language.

Amazon     Barnes and Noble     Goodreads     iBooks     Kobo    Google Play 

Until October 29, 2016 you can get your copy for free.

Ali Parker

Author Bio:

Ali Parker is a full-time contemporary romance writer who left a life in Corporate America to try out living a dream. She loves coffee, watching a great movie and hanging out with her hubs. By hanging out, she means making out. Hanging out is for those little creepy elves at Christmas. No tight green stockings for her.

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Ali also writes Sci-Fi Romance under Liza Probz, and Western Romance under Jessica Mills.



“One moment you are panting needing a fan, and then next you are laughing out loud. I now can’t wait for book two.” ~ Amazon Reader

“WOW! Ali has done it again. I love her books! This book will keep you drawn in from the beginning to the end! This is the first book in this series and I cannot wait to get my hands on the second book! I loved the chemistry between Ethan and Riley!” ~ Amazon Reader

“Wow, just wow. This book will suck you in and keep you there until the very end.” ~ Amazon Reader

I loved this book! I could not put it down and immediately read the second book. The character development in this story is excellent. ~ Amazon Reader


Check out the rafflecopter giveaway for a signed copy of Stage Left here.

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Icarus Rising

Icarus Rising by N.W. Moors

Paranormal Romance

Date Published: 9/6/16

Publisher: Sunday Morning Publishing

 After his fall to Earth, Icarus has been in Hell, punished for his hubris. When he wins a chance at parole, he’s thrilled – except for the set of wings attached to his body. 

Eve Gregory runs a small bookstore in northern Connecticut. When she hires the handsome stranger to work for her, she doesn’t know the secrets he’s hiding. Or that becoming involved with him will embroil her with the Greek gods and goddesses. 

Icarus and Eve must perform a quest set down for them by Zeus. If they are successful, will that be end of their relationship? Or will love teach them a new way to soar?

Amazon     Barnes and Noble     Goodreads     Kobo     iBooks

Author’s Bio:

N.W. Moors lives in Portland, Maine, the land of lobster and pine trees. She grew up in Connecticut and retired north(it’s nice along the coast in winter). She’s a voracious reader and avid traveler – she loves to visit Great Britain and Ireland. Researching trips meant that she tries to learn as much about the area as possible and listen to great Celtic music. She’s also a knitter and hiker/walker with two cats(the cats don’t walk). She truly appreciates you sharing this adventure with her. She will continue to write about magic, love, and the small town of Antrim, Maine. Please leave reviews and like her Facebook page or follow her blog or twitter feed for further updates.

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My Review

4 stars

 Icarus has finally been released from Hell after serving his time. But Apollo and Artemis don’t agree with his release. Icarus is on earth but every time things start to be going well for him, Apollo and Artemis have to mess it up. Icarus is giving a tip from Athena to head to a small town in which he finds a small bookshop and Eve.

Eve gives Icarus a job and a place to stay, but she is drug into his life when she learns the truth about his past. Even and Icarus are on a quest for the golden fleece. Together they face the challenges from Apollo and Artemis.

This is a cute take on the Icarus legend. I loved following the different Gods and Goddesses. Icarus is trying to pick up the pieces of his life but is not going to get the chance with Apollo and Artemis harassing him. Eve is just a sweetie and I was glad to see that they started a relationship. This is a quick read and I do hope to read more from N.W. Moors in the future.

Reading Addiction

I received Icarus Rising from Reading Addiction Virtual Blog Tours for free. This is in no way influenced my opinion of this book.

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