Monday, March 30, 2015

She-Hulk: Law and Disorder

I've never been huge on She-Hulk but when I saw this kick ass cover art I couldn't resist checking this comic out and I am SOO GLAD I did. It was awesome and gave me a whole new appreciation for the Jade Giantess. This comic doesn't focus on She-Hulk's work with the Avengers or the Fantastic Four, instead it centers on her work as a lawyer. After getting fired for not bringing in her famous friends as clientele, She-Hulk (aka Jennifer) opens up her own practice and starts cultivating clients. She gets to interacts with some characters we are familiar with (Doctor Doom, Tony Stark, Daredevil, Hell Cat and more) and finds out that lawyering own her own is going to be a lot more work than she initially thought. Totally awesome, humorous, and smart, this is a must read for Marvel fans.

Thirteen Reasons Why

Powerful, depressing, and eye opening. A must read for teens and adults alike. Thirteen Reasons Why tells the story of a teen that has made the decision to end her life and the bacstory as to how she reached that conclusion. She records several cassettes, and on each side she elaborates on a different reason as to why her life is no longer worth living. There are thirteen reasons and thirteen people that lead her on her self-destructive path and everyone listed must listen to the tapes and see how their actions (or lack thereof) played a part. The story is told through the perspective of Clay Jensen. When he receives the tapes in the mail one day, he has no idea what they are about. But as he starts listening to them he is overcome with horror, revulsion, and sadness. He could have done soo much more, he should have seen the signs, been a better person. Clay can only imagine how the other people on the tape feel. They are all implicit in one way or another. Hannah doesn't make the tapes to needlessly inflect pain on these people, she wants them to understand that their actions and words have far greater impact then they can ever imagine. Some of them she wants exposed or hurt, but others she wants to change, to become better people. An enlightening book on suicide, depressing but heartfelt.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Mansfield Park

Decidedly my least favorite of Jane Austen's novels. Fanny Price may be level-headed, but her weak, shy, awkward attitude failed to win me over. As the eldest daughter of many in a poor household, she was whisked away at age ten to live at her rich aunt's house as a ward. Always made to feel inferior, Fanny passes the time being timid, meek, and always ready to lend a hand. The four cousins she lives with pay her no mind, save Edmund, who takes her under his wing. When she reaches her eighteenth year she is introduced to all of her cousin's friends and is reluctantly allowed to be a part of their society. Fanny decides to become an excellent wallflower and never really pursues friendship with anyone. When Maria is married and Julia off in London, one of the neighbors and friends of her cousins, Mary, begrudgingly takes her in as a confident, beings as there is no other ladies to socialize with. At this time, Mary's brother becomes obsessed with Fanny and tries too woo her. But Fanny rejects all his advances because, while being a perfect wallflower, she saw his actions and manner towards her cousins and thought it very un-gentlemanly. At this time, dear Edmund decides that he might be in love with Maria, but he is disappointed that she looks down on the clergy, a career path that he will soon be undertaking. What are Fanny and Edmund to do? Is love obvious?

Not a bad read, but it definitely starts off slow and I wasn't in love with any of the characters. I wish Fanny had been a little stronger.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Visiting the Sins

The cover art on this book had me doubting that this was a dark southern comedy but boy was I wrong! It's crude, inspiring, hilarious, and dark all in one go. It blew my expectations out of the water! Told from the viewpoints of the Wheeler women through several generations, the confessions, lies, gossip, and sordid family history will keep the readers turning pages. As the problems get bigger and the past gets dirtier you can't help but admire these women for their spunk, bravery, and hard headedness. There's Pokey, the grandmother of the clan raised in a shack in Thorny Bog, she had to rut and scheme her way out of squalor. With no more than an eighth grade education she was married at thirteen, pregnant by fourteen, and abandoned by fifteen. The fact that she made it out alive makes her unapologetic, sassy, and crude. Pokey says whatever vulgar things come to mind and is more often than not a source of embarrassment for her daughter, Rebanelle. Rebanelle was determined to make something of her self so she left for college, married a lawyer, and moved back with her head held high. She tries to be high class but it's soo hard with her ridiculous mother. Her only daughter, Curtis Lee, also fails to meet her expectations. As a divorced alcoholic, Rebanelle still wishes that she had never given up on pageants. All she wanted was a daughter to be Miss Texas! The vignettes are powerful and funny and there manages to be a good undercurrent of religion, which normally I would roll my eyes at, but honestly it goes quite well with the vulgar, hilarious, nature of the family. Honestly, it was quite refreshing!

A remarkable debut from Melanie Denman. I eagerly anticipate her future works! A must read for fans of dark family sagas, humor, and inspirational fiction.

I received this book for free from iRead Book Tours in return for my honest, unbiased opinion.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

One for the Money

I will admit, this is the first Janet Evanovich book I've ever read. She's a very prolific and popular author, I've just never gotten around to checking her out because I wasn't sure if she would be my cup of tea. While I enjoyed One for the Money, I don't know how soon I will pick the rest of the series. They are light, fluffy fun reads, perfect for airports or the beach. This series focuses on Stephanie Plum, a young woman who, while out of luck and out of money, joins her cousin's bail bonds business and tracks down clients who have skipped out of their court hearings. Stephanie learns the hard way that there is a lot more to becoming an apprehension agent. She quickly finds herself wrapped up in a case bigger than she ever could have imagined, but deals with her ridiculous problems with wit and humor. A nice, easy, read.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Rasmus and the Vagabond

Children will eat up this adventure, as they imagine themselves as Rasmus, the runaway orphan. After he escapes the orphanage and "The Hawk" he encounters a tramp. Thankfully, this is the nicest tramp in the world and the two get along famously. Rasmus becomes dedicated to Oscar, God's favorite tramp, and the two pass their time singing or working for food. Things don't stay rosy for long though. The two encounter some masked robbers and the bad guys attempt to put the blame for the stolen goods on the tramps. Oscar and Rasmus must act quickly if they're going to save their reputation and stay out of jail! Rasmus never dreamed that leaving the orphanage would open such a world of adventure and mystery.

Rasmus and the Vagabond is a tale that will delight children, they will identify with Rasmus and his musings and will long for adventure on the road. Any fan of Pippi Longstocking will fall in love with this story, written by the same author. A quick read for all ages with great ink drawings dispersed throughout the story.

I received this book for free from Handlebar Publishing in return for my honest, unbiased review.

Summer Knight

This series just keeps getting better and better! In this fourth installment Harry Dresden has to not only deal with the Wizard's White Council and the Vampire's Red Court, but the Fairy Courts of Summer and Winter. He has to do a nearly impossible job for the Winter Queen and if he fails that then he will be revoked of his wizard status by the White Council, who would in turn hand him over to the Red Court to end the wizard vampire feud. No matter which way he turns, Harry runs into boatloads of trouble. He has to call on Billy and his werewolf gang to help him, but then he is worried about jeopardizing their lives. And to top it all off, someone who he hasn't seen in over a decade waltzes back into his life. Non-stop action and the creepy crawlies keep getting scarier. Well worth a read or listen :)

Friday, March 20, 2015

Unelmoija: The Timeshifter

A new adult urban fantasy that will captivate and intrigue readers. While this is the fourth installment in the Weeia series, it also serves as a standalone because it seamlessly catches the reader up to events that happened in the previous novels. Due to a centurion overdose that was administered to Amy in the past, her weeia abilities are on the fritz; she's more tired than usual and has suddenly been able to timeshift in her sleep. The timeshifting is a HUGE problem for Amy because she can't control it and if anything happens out of the ordinary it could screw up her entire future. She has to find a cure for the centurion lodged in her brain or she'll end up screwing her timeline and taking her friends and family with her. Determined to find the source of centurion and maybe a cure, Amy, her sister, and her boyfriend head to Cambodia to try and put a stop to their predicament. Even though time is pressing the trio find time for food, fun, and lots of sightseeing while on their quest. Will they find what they need and will they find it in time? Read to find out more!

For fans of fantasy and adventure.

I received this book free from the author in return for my honest, unbiased review.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

New from Max Lucado | ‘Miracle at the Higher Grounds Cafe’ and iPad Giveaway

Typical Max Lucado, sickly sweet, over the top, and sure to draw thousands of readers. A God Blog, a coffee shop, and a broken family are all about to intersect. Chelsea separates from her husband after his infidelity, takes their two children, and reopens her family's coffee shop, The Higher Grounds Cafe. Things aren't smooth sailing though; with hardly any customers she can barely keep the shop open. And to top it off the IRS hands her a bill totaling $80,000+. Chelsea needs a break. Little does she know that God has sent her guardian angel down to watch over her. Manny comes in disguise, he makes himself invaluable to her cafe as a barista and cares for her and her family. When a mysterious blog becomes associated with her cafe claiming that God will answer ONE question per person, she along with everyone else, is skeptical. But her business booms as people trek to her shop to ask God their one question and the answers seem so heartfelt and genuine? Is God really looking out for her and her family, can she save her marriage, and can she find God again? Fans of inspirational fiction and Max Lucado will be clamoring for more.

I received this book for free from Litfuse Publicity in return for my honest, unbiased opinion.

In Max Lucado's new fiction release, Miracle at the Higher Grounds Cafe, he asks, If you could ask God anything, what would you ask—and how would he answer? When a catastrophe strikes and her ex comes calling, Chelsea begins to wonder if the whole universe is conspiring against her quest to make it on her own. After a shocking discovery opens her eyes to the unseen world around her, Chelsea finds the courage to ask, and heaven answers in a most unexpected way.

Join Max in celebrating the release of his new fiction book by entering his iPad giveaway and RSVPing to his Coffee with Max webcast!


One grand prize winner will receive:
  • An iPad Mini
  • A copy of Miracle at the Higher Grounds Cafe
Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on March 23rd. Winner will be announced March 24th on the Litfuse blog. Then tune in later on the 24th for his Coffee with Max webcast. RSVP here!



Sunday, March 15, 2015

Season of the Dragonflies

Mix Practical Magic and Chocolat together and have it set in the Blue Ridge Mountains and you'll have a good idea what this book is about. Generations of women in the Lenore family have bottled the most alluring perfume that enables the wearers to succeed at anything they put their mind to. Senators, lawyers, musicians, doctors, and celebrities are just a few of the powerful jobs that women have obtained with the power of this perfume. Behind the powerful scent is a secret flower, a family of strong women, and just a hint of magic. After a divorce and failed career, Lucia moves back to the family home and business in the Blue Ridge Mountains. While there she discovers that her sister, Mya and her mother are facing troubles with some tricky clients and their beloved flower crop might be dying. Can they put aside all their differences and work together to save the family business from crumbling? A captivating read with enough intrigue to keep readers turning the pages. While the ending leaves a bit to be desired, the plot is unique and magical enough to almost make up for it.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Allingham: The Long Journey Home

The thrilling conclusion to the Allingham series packs in an insane amount of action and intrigue. Marshall Allingham has lost everything; his beloved wife has died and he can no longer function. He retreats to a shack on a peach orchard and lives the life of a deranged hermit. Convinced that he can communicate with the ghost of his wife and other deceased men, he separates himself off from society at a time when they need him most. An all out ranch war is engulfing their town. Bodies are piling up and everyone is pointing fingers at one another. One of the ranch owners sends for tough New York cop, Stosh Gorski, to come and investigate since Allingham is too indisposed to be any help. As the problems and bodies pile up, Stosh can only hope that Allingham will come to his senses because if he's going to end the ranch war, he's going to need all the help he can get. Filled with beloved characters from the rest of the series, Rosario, Old Pop, Pierce, the Irish brothers and more, readers will delight in the conclusion to this wild, rollicking, western series.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Novel Interiors

An enchanting coffee table book perfect for book lovers and interior decorators. Lisa Borgnes Giramonti takes readers on a picturesque romp through some of the prettiest and most well decorated homes I've ever seen. While the title makes it sound like this book will showcase home libraries, it does soo much more than that. This book will help you discover your design style through different literary worlds. According to the author, classic novels contain all the details needed for living a stylish life. The book is broken into six sections: Shall I put the kettle on, remembrance of things past, living au natural, oh the glamour of it all, anything goes, and sometimes a fantasy. Each section contains decorating tips, literary quotations and GORGEOUS photos that will make any homeowner want to go out and start re-decorating. This book is sure to have something for everyone, from the man that loves sleek geometric lines in The Great Gatsby to the woman who loves threadbare cozy chic like in Austen's Sense and Sensibility. A visually captivating and inspiring read!

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Summer of the Mariposas

Fanciful and inventive, this coming of age novel tells the story of five young sisters as they test the bonds of sisterhood. Their summer is turned upside down when they find the body of a dead man floating in their favorite swimming hole. Juanita suggests they take the body back to it's family and three of her sisters think it's a fantastic plan. Odilia, the oldest, objects but is soon overturned by the excitement and vigor of her sisters. Along the way they encounter many unbelievable things, things of legend that will either make or break them. With the help of the Aztec goddess they try to do right by the dead man, their family, and themselves. Full of ancient lore, family values, and heroic quests this book will entrance young adult readers.

Monday, March 9, 2015


I could not put this book down, I LOVED it! I enjoy reading fairy tale adaptations and "Cinder" is hands down the most exciting and inventive version of Cinderella I have ever read, hands down! The story opens in an apocalyptic future of Earth. After the fourth World War every continent merged to form huge provinces, there are five Earthen provinces and one Lunar colony. Technology has evolved to support hovercrafts, net-screens, androids and cyborgs. Young Cinder lives with her stepmother and two sisters, but she has NOTHING in common with them. She is a cyborg. Orphaned at eleven her stepfather took her in but was then tragically killed. Cinder is forced to work as a mechanic to support her "family" but all that changes when the prince stops by her stall and her stepsister is infected with the plague. Suddenly, everything in Cinder's small world is thrown off kilter and she must overcome everyone's prejudices about cyborgs and prove that she matters. Fantastic, unique, and well worth a read. I cannot wait to read the rest of the series!

The Girl on the Train

The kind of mystery that hooks you and won't let you go. The Girl on the Train has been compared to Gone Girl, but the only similarities lie in the mystery aspect, it's not as much of a shock or twist as Flynn's novel. That being said, it was still a damn good read. I listened to the audiobook which was fantastic! It was narrated by three lovely English girls and definitely helped me picture the book a little better. There are three different narrators, none of which are likable. I literally hated them all, especially the main one, Rachel. Rachel is a raging alcoholic and the least reliable narrator ever. Every scenario or decision she is in, is quite literally cringe worthy. Rachel rides the train every day. She especially loves staring at the people she passes, her favorite is a couple by her old house. She gives them imaginary names and backgrounds and tries to live vicariously through the happy life she "imagines" they have. One day though her little bubble is shattered when she sees the wife... with another man! That weekend the woman is reported missing and when Rachel sees that in the paper all hell breaks loose. One bad decision after another gets her more and more involved in the case. What if the couple's "happiness" was just a figment of Rachel's imagination? What if everything is?!?!?

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Splendors and Glooms

While this book was well written and fanciful, it wasn't quite my cup of tea. I read it because it's one of the Young Hoosier Book Award nominees and was highly commended for being a great book for middle readers. I won't deny it that, it's got a unique plot, memorable characters, and a sense of foreboding. The story follows two young orphans who are in the service of puppet master, Grisini. Grisini is a cruel, unlikable man, but little do they know that he dabbles in magic. When a young wealthy girl goes missing they wonder what his involvement can possibly be. They soon realize that things are not what they seem and they are in the middle of a decades old feud for power. Can the orphans help save the day, will they be able to tell right from wrong?

Tuesday, March 3, 2015


Third Jane Austen book down this year! Sadly, this one falls short of Pride and Prejudice and Sense and Sensibility for me. Emma had a much slower plot and I thought it was insanely predictable. Don't get me wrong, it's still a good read and I enjoyed all the banter and classic "mishaps" that Jane Austen's characters got themselves into, it's just not my favorite. Emma is an independent, fanciful young woman. She lives with her father and loves to play matchmaker amongst her friends. As new residents come into their English country village, Emma finds that she may have taken things a little too far. Minding one's own business seems to be the best course of action. Although not my favorite, still worth a read.