Category Archives: Book/Movie Review

Don’t Fear the Reaper. Well, maybe you should @eholloway300 @chapterxchapter

Is there such thing as a “Reaper” genre out there?

Call-Me-Grim-CoverI’m wondering, because last year I read MY SISTER’S REAPER by Dorothy Dreyer, and I also read CALL ME GRIM by Elizabeth Holloway. Both of these books were YA, and they each featured the Grim Reaper, but both in a very different way.

This year I got my greedy little hands on the sequel to CALL ME GRIM. Now, I have to admit, that this is the book that I was reading when I had that impromptu shove from a ghost while staying at Weisel Hostile in Nockamixon State Park.

DeathBecomesMeCoverDEATH BECOMES ME has the creepiest scene in it with a Reaper wearing a little girl’s body chasing people around. CREEPY!

Anyway… Both CALL ME  GRIM and DEATH BECOMES ME have a really unique twist on the whole idea of the Reaper, in that there are more than one, with the Big Bad Main Grim Reaper in charge of them all.

DEATH BECOMES ME picks up where CALL ME GRIM leaves off, and really digs deeper into the lore, and leaves you with a lot of questions, and a really odd feeling… I mean, did she really just send a soul off to … [[*/<>?:+**]]

Call-Me-Grim-CoverGAH! I can’t tell you because it will be a HUGE spoiler, but Wow! Does Elizabeth Holloway have a great (and maybe disturbingly twisted) imagination.

In a way, I felt like this book sewed a lot up for the characters. In some ways, it felt like “The End”, but there is another book coming out that I belive is the last in the series.

DeathBecomesMeCoverThere is still a huge question hanging out there that I, for one, want the answer to.

But maybe I don’t. I have a really bad feeling that a third book might leave me terribly disturbed.

This is a romance, by the way… but it is a romance twisted around the really well thought out, kinds creepy plot with grim reapers and people dying and stuff like that.  Wonderfully imaginative.

Just don’t read in it a 200 year old house in the middle of the woods. I won’t be making that mistake again.

Chapter by Chapter was nice enough to send me a copy of this book to review. So it is all their fault that I am seeing ghosts.

Click here to pick up a copy of CALL ME GRIM or DEATH BECOMES ME


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You can find Fire in the Woods at all these awesome bookish places!

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Kobo | Chapters Indigo! | iBooks | IndiBound |

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Check Out – “Claire Daly: Reluctant Soul Saver” by Michele Brouder


Clare Daly

Claire Daly: Reluctant Soul Saver

by Michele Brouder

Genre: YA, Paranormal Romance

First of all,

Let’s talk about COVER LOVE!

Yup, love it! What’s there not to like about old books? Certainly drew my eye, as did the idea of a bookish character who wanted to be a librarian (even though her wanting to be a librarian really had nothing to do with the plot, other than a little mention in the beginning)

What’s it about?

The book has this really long synopsis (that I’ll attach at the bottom) but in a nutshell, this girl’s hands start glowing one day, and she finds out she has these magical powers that she is supposed to use to guide “lost” spirits to heaven.

Pretty cool, right?

But of course there is a catch. There is this awesome bad-guy dude (Who I have to admit I liked a little more than the main character) who is after her.

Yup, he wants her dead, and also to steal this super-cool necklace that has been handed down through the generations. There is also an “almost” love triangle with a guy she mainly only talks about, and another angel-like guy who she apparently has known through many past lives.

Still with me? Good!

This story has a really interesting premise. Very strong religious content, and quite a tear-jerker at times. I really liked the whole idea of the story (which I can’t tell you too much more about or it will ruin it)

A few niggles: 

I think at times the story missed the mark in trying to create a love triangle that was emotionally non-existent to the reader, because we never really get to know the human boyfriend.

While the overall premise of who Claire is was quite interesting, I would have loved to see more of the bad guy. I think he is interesting enough to have his own book. I found myself  waiting for him to come back after a long absence to stir things up a bit.

Overall Impression?

Overall I did enjoy this book. I give it a solid three stars for some really interesting religious concepts, and a bang up ending that really kept my attention.

I heard that this book was on sale for $.99 on ebook. But it ends on November 19th. If you are reading this when this post first hits, you might still be able to catch the sale.

Clare DalyClare Daly


Purchase Links:

BAM | Amazon | B&N | TBD




  • One (1) winner will received a $25 Amazon Gift Card, a copy of Claire Daly: Reluctant Soul Saver, a book mark, a coffee mug, and some other stuff for ‘readers’ from the author (INT)
  • Three (3) winners will receive a copy of Claire Daly: Reluctant Soul Saver by Michele Brouder (INT)


Click here to enter the Rafflecopter!

About Michele Brouder:

I was born in western New York, the oldest of 5. I’ve loved reading since I was very little. From the age of 9, I’ve wanted to be a writer. In high school, I wrote a lot of angst-ridden civil war dramas ala Gone With The Wind, knowing more about the Battle of the Bull Run than a normal teenager should know. I dabbled in writing after that but didn’t get serious about it until 2006, when I decided that this was what I wanted to do for the rest of my life.

I’ve had many interesting jobs but my passion has always been writing.

I lived in Ireland from 2006-2013 with my husband and 2 boys. We moved back to the US and settled in Florida briefly (2 years) before returning back to Ireland in August 2015.

 Connect with the Author:  Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Pinterest


The long book synopsis, in case you were interested:

Clare DalyWhen seventeen year-old librarian wannabe Claire Daly is dragged kicking, screaming and cursing from everything she loves—her mam, her cozy Irish village and the dreamy boy next door—to take up arms in the battle of good versus evil, she learns the hard way that sometimes you don’t get to choose your own destiny, destiny chooses you.

Claire’s life plan is simple: head off to university to get her degree in library studies, summon up the courage to tell her best friend Chas that she loves him and live happily ever after. She never once entertained the idea that she might possess divine powers, that she might be predestined to battle Hell’s demons, or, to complicate matters further, that another love of many lives past might turn up on her doorstep. But life doesn’t always go as planned, and when a co-worker is viciously attacked by a demon and her own family threatened, Claire must face the truth: she is called to a higher purpose and has no choice but to answer. Claire sets aside her dreams and begins learning how to deal with the Unholy once and for all. Armed with only a crash course in soul saving and her wits, she gears up for the ultimate show down in Hell. But will it be enough?

Note: I was send a copy of this beautiful book in exchange for my honest review. Check out my Instagram to see some of the fun pictures I took of the book while reading it.  See ya!

Exciting News! And Also “Oops! I’m sorry!”

Woohoo! Guess what?

I just submitted the final version of ASHES IN THE SKY to my publisher. Whew!

This one has been a long time coming, and I’m sorry for everyone who has been waiting patiently. Publishing is a funny business. Releases dates change all the time.

The next step? Formatting for Ebook and Print. Awesomeness!

That leaves me free and clear for my writer’s retreat this weekend. Three whole days of writing in a cabin in the woods with a bunch of Nano-ers.

I’m hoping to make a huge dent (maybe even finish) the first book in my new series. I’m super excited!

This is where the “I’m sorry” comes in.

I have to admit… Things have been crazy over the last few weeks, and I dropped the ball on something.

DeathBecomesMeCoverI agreed to read and review “Death Becomes Me” by Elizabeth Holloway, and in all the mayhem, I wrote down the wrong date.

I was supposed to post my review today, but I haven’t even finished the book yet!

[She hangs her head in shame]

But I will say that I am totally enjoying it so far! This is book two in the series, and so far I think I may be enjoying it even more than the first one.

Call-Me-Grim-CoverHave you read Call Me Grim? This is a “Reaper” romance.

Yes, you heard me right. It is such an original theme, and I’ve never heard anything like it.

I’ll follow up with a full review as soon as I finish.

Until next time… wish me luck on my writer’s retreat. Woohoo!

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Sometimes a retelling just “works”. A review of the 2014 animated Tarzan movie

For family movie night recently, my husband pulled up “Tarzan – The Legend lives” (The 2014 version)

To be honest, all three of our boys 9, 12, and 14 rolled their eyes. I think I did, too.

ANOTHER Tarzan adaptation?   Pleeeeease say it isn’t so.

Within about three seconds, though, the movie caught my twelve year old’s attention as dinosaurs ran across the screen, and we were taken into outer space to see a meteor throttling toward Earth. For a while, I’d forgotten what the movie was about. This didn’t seem like Tarzan at all!

Really impressive animation

My fourteen year old and I jumped on board when we skipped to the future to see that they’d updated the story to a more present-day-like setting. Then a little accident happened, and the little boy gets stranded in the jungle.

This is where my youngest set aside his computer and started watching with the rest of us.

I have to say, this adaptation seemed the most “real” from the perspective of how Tarzan was raised by apes and how he moved and learned to live like an ape. My husband didn’t think that Tarzan would have forgotten people and words (he was about six when lost, and people show up when he’s about seventeen, I’d guess) I’m not so sure this is true.

While all the basic elements of the Tarzan story are there, I love how they wove in a sci-fi angle. And where stuff like this (crossing genres) usually bothers me, somehow it really worked in this story.

By the end, we were all huddled on the couch watching and enjoying this together – something that rarely happens in our house these days.

This movie had plenty of good old Tarzan for Dad, lots of explosions for Mom, and enough action and adventure to keep the kids happy.

For us, this adaptation totally worked. I’m surprised that I hadn’t even heard of it. I’m not sure if it did well in theaters, but I think this one is worth a watch from home.


The narrator of an audio book can make or break the novel.

The joy of audio books …

Game of Thrones has been out for quite a while now, and despite being a fantasy lover, I haven’t picked it up because hey, these things are HUGE, and I’d been warned that they were so detailed that the story moved slow at times.

1430695 YAY CHEERBut when I saw the audio book at the library, I figured that would be a great way to experience the book without cutting into my reading time. So I prepared to make Game of Thrones a part of my commute for the next few months (There were 28 disks in the set).

Project2At first I enjoyed the narrator, who’s British accent really added flavor to this medieval fantasy tale. The problem was, though, that his voice sounded like an older man. Now, this was fine when voicing Ned Stark, or the King …but most of the characters in Game of Thrones are kids 14 years old and younger.

I’ve listened to many talented actors voice novels this year, and each and every character sounded different. The female narrators had a knack for sounding like boys, and the male narrators had no problem sounding like girls.

Project1No matter who’s part this narrator read, though, sounded like an old man.

That made it really hard for me to get absorbed in the story when we were in the points of view of characters that were young, or even worse… GIRLS.

No matter how hard I tried, I envisioned an old man playing all the characters. It kinda ruined it for me.

Yesterday I got a ping from the library that my audio book was due back. I was only on disk 4 of twenty eight. Since someone else had requested it, I could not renew, so I returned the discs figuring I could take them out again at a later date.


But the more I think about it, I probably won’t. The sad truth is that I really wasn’t enjoying it, and I don’t want to get a bad taste for the book just because the narrator didn’t spark my imagination.

This will be my first DNF of 2015. Bummer.

If you’re interested in listening to narrators who were great, consider the audiobooks of Cinder, Scarlet, and Cress (All the Lunar chronicles) or the audio book of “14” by Peter Clines. Those narrators totally rocked a distinct voice for every character, be they male or female.


How can a book be both the worst and best you’ve ever read?

Alien Huh Close

I think we’ve all been there… we are gobbling up a book, loving every minute, and then all of the sudden Bam! Something happens in the plot that kills the book for you. Disappointment lingers. You place the book on your nightstand and think up reasons NOT to read. Then, after a few days, you grab something else, and that original book sits on your dresser, collecting dust.

I came very close to this in reading “14” by Peter Clines. Notice that I said “close.”

Let me explain.

This book was recommended to me by two readers on Instagram. This year my goal was to read only books that were recommended in order to really submerse myself in the current trends.

Anyway, that’s how I found “14”. Within a few pages, I was instantly engaged. This is odd for me, because the book is about an everyday guy who has a low paying job and gets an apartment in an old, historical building. Nothing exciting, right?

Yet I was flipping pages.

Then we meet the other people living in the building, and they each have their own quirks, their own voice, and their own … hmmm, I don’t know how to put it, but they each have their own “something special” that that drew me to them and made me want to read more.

So I kept flipping pages.

Soon, they all start discovering odd things about their building and their apartments, and that’s when the fun begins. I really can’t tell you anything else without ruining it, but at one point, something “happened.”

One of the characters looked out the window and saw a “xxxxxx”. Now, when I read this, I thought,

“Please tell me that he didn’t really see a “xxxxxx”.

But, alas, the main character actually DID see what I didn’t want him to see.

Alien SnarlI stopped reading. I was angry. Why did the author have to go there? I was loving this book! Why did he have to ruin it with a “xxxxxx”?

But the story festered and simmered in my brain. What were the characters going to do? Would they stop? Would they continue? Would the one character tell the others about the stupid “xxxxxx”?

I picked up the book, and eagerly started to devour it again. To my glee, the “xxxxxx” was not there after that scene, and I dove back into this amazing world.

Enter the climax. Wahoo! There were things I didn’t expect, and boom were we on a fun ride! (Meaning me and the characters, because we were all buds by this point.)

But then another hard stop, because the “xxxxxx” came back. And not only that, the “xxxxxx” “****ed”.

I wish I could fill in those blanks, but it would completely ruin this book.

Again, I was so frustrated that not only was there a “xxxxxx” in the book, but the “xxxxxx” also “****ed” that I considered placing the book down.

But I couldn’t.

My friends were in imminent danger. Would they survive?

Alien sour I realized that I wasn’t reading a book anymore. I was experiencing events. The story was happening around me, not inside the pages of a book. The writing is totally on point, maybe bordering on brilliant being that I WANTED to abandon the book. I just couldn’t.

After a while I was able to accept that the “xxxxxx” “****ed”. Not sure why. Maybe I just got used to it? Anyway, I was then totally able to enjoy the adventure with my new friends.

Yes, I’d have to say that this is one of the best-written books I’ve ever read, simply because of my need to find out more about the characters. But I would subtract one star in a review for two reasons.

#1, obviously, the “xxxxxx” – which I still wish was written differently, but so be it.

#2, The book starts out with a false action beginning. This was not a problem initially. Actually, I thought it was brilliant to show what would happen later in the story, since the beginning is very “everyday” contemporary. Unfortunately, this ended up ruining the end for me, because I thought I had read a passage that would happen in the future. When that DID NOT happen later in the book, I was taken aback, and scratched my head when the book was suddenly over.

Alien PKO_0003410-JPGBut in the end those things did not ruin the book for me, and I think it will be a long time before I am able to stop thinking about this story.

If anyone reads this book, (Please please please read this book) I would love to talk about it with you. I am very interested if anyone else was annoyed by the “xxxxxx” and if that aspect of the story was enough to ruin it for you.

Note: Mature content (mild sex scene) and a few F-bombs, but I didn’t find the language overused. I might even drop an F-bomb myself if I saw a “xxxxxx” coming at me.

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An 11 year-old Reviews Joshua and the Lightning Road by @DonnaGalanti “Omigosh! Action Adventure!” @Month9Books

Since Donna was nice enough to hang out and chat on Monday nights with us, I thought it would be great if I could get a middle grade perspective of her book.

This review comes directly from my eleven year old son, with a little prodding by Mom.  Details about what the book (and the book trailer) are about are at the bottom of the post. Enjoy!

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 Let’s start out with what you liked.

The main thing I liked about it was the non-stop action and adventure.

Other details I liked were how different things and different problems were introduced and there were so many things they had to do all at once. And I also liked how the story didn’t take place in one area, how they had to move to different realms all the time.

Also I liked how things started winding down at the end, and then they started winding back up at the end– At 75% it seemed like everything was safe and then it was like “Omigosh they’re not safe because (character name removed) is back!”


 Did anything special catch your eye?

Some of the things that caught my eye were how you didn’t know Joshua’s name until his friend mentioned it. You didn’t know his name until the second chapter. I kinda liked that.

Also, at the beginning, I liked how when the storm happened out of nowhere and then this guy showed up and all this action suddenly came out of nowhere. It was like, “Omigosh! Action adventure.”

(Mommy plays Devil’s Advocate) Was there anything you didn’t like?

(He had to think a minute)

The only thing I didn’t like was how hard it was to keep track of who the characters were. There were too many kids that he meets.

There was also one character that has something bad happen to him, but he still goes on the adventure, but is only mentioned once when they are eating but then you never hear about him again. What happened to him?

[Minor spoiler] They never found out who spilled the beans on the plan they had to escape from the mill. [End minor spoiler]

 Overall thoughts?

Even though there were a few things that bothered me, overall I really liked this book.  

Would you read another book n the series if there were one?



On a scale of 1 for the worst book you’ve read and 5 for the best book you ever read, how would you rate this book?

I would rate it a four

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There you go! Directly from my eleven year old son. I hope you enjoyed it!

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About Donna: Donna Galanti is the author of A Human Element and A Hidden Element (Imajin Books), the first two award-winning, bestselling books in the paranormal suspense Element Trilogy, and the middle grade fantasy adventure series Joshua and The Lightning Road (Month9Books). Donna is a contributing editor to International Thriller Writers the Big Thrill magazine and blogs at Project Mayhem. She lives in Pennsylvania with her family in an old farmhouse. Visit her at

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About Joshua and the Lightning Road:

Twelve-year-old Joshua Cooper learns the hard way that lightning never strikes by chance when a bolt strikes his house and whisks away his best friend—possibly forever. To get him back, Joshua must travel the Lightning Road to a dark world where stolen human kids are work slaves ruled by the frustrated heirs of the Greek Olympians who come to see Joshua as the hero prophesied to restore their lost powers. New friends come to Joshua’s aid and while battling beasts and bandits and fending off the Child Collector, Joshua’s mission quickly becomes more than a search for his friend—it becomes the battle of his life.

An 11-year-old’s review of The UnderTakers: The Last Siege of Haven


Before the review, a note from “Mom”:
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention how I first encountered a Ty Drago book.  For those of you who don’t know me, I have three sons. 14, 11, and 9.
My 14 year old (AKA the Monomaniacal Middle Grade Reviewer) is an avid reader. Always has been. After years of struggling to get Middle Dude to even read a comic book, I’d given up. Then I started having the same trouble with Littlest Dude. In a panic, I rescheduled a weekend to bring Littlest to meet Dan Gutman… the author of the only book the kid agreed to read if I twisted his arm.  Middle Dude came kicking and screaming (Well, not that bad, but he wasn’t happy)
What, Doesn't this look like Ty Drago?

What, Doesn’t this look like Ty Drago?

Anyway, this is where Ty Drago comes in wearing a big old red cape

(Well, kind of. We actually didn’t even meet him) …
While we were buying a few Dan Gutman books at the Barned and Noble stand, Middle Dude comes up and hands me this book. “Can we get this?” he asked. “It looks sooo cool!”
I flipped over this very thick book 480 stinking pages. It was HUGE.  I said, “You’re not going to read this.”
“Yes I am,” he pleaded. “It sounds awesome.”
I stared at this monstrous book that I knew would end up as a doorstop or mashed in the toy graveyard in the corner of his room. With a sigh, I purchased The Undertakers, figuring if he read five pages, I was way ahead of the game.
That is when the magic happened. That night, I found Middle Dude hiding under the covers with a flashlight READING.  Did you hear that? R.E.A.D.I.N.G.
I couldn’t believe it!  A few weeks later, he was done and asked for the second book. And then the third. And then the on-line material!
This kid who hated reading, was suddenly devouring Ty Drago books.  And once he blew through them all, he was far more open to trying other books. 
Now he reads every night with a smile on his face. Thank you Ty Drago!  You are my hero.
Enough of my babbling … Here is Middle Dude’s review.  I was going to correct his punctuation and typos and stuff, but I figured I’d leave it as he typed it.  Enjoy!
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The UnderTakers

The Last Siege of Haven.

To Ty Drago,
Over all i really liked the book. It was literally non stop acition and i read most of it on one night because it was so great. The only thing i disliked was that most of the book was based on getting amy to haven.
Throught out the book i just kept thinking in my head oh my gosh what will happen next. my favorite part of the book was when they were being chased by the baby malum, it really added alot of action to the book, like a hole new species.
another part i like was when helene got out of her homeless old lady suit for backup. that came out of no where. When prentended to lose his sight i was like oh my gosh how did he lose it he isnt eighteen yet and a bunch of other questiosn like who will be the leader.
i enjoyed the part when they set haven with traps so the corpses wouldnt get in. i was also sad when [SPOILER REMOVED] died, but at least {SPOILER REMOVED} saved [his or her] friends.
overall this was one of the best books that ive ever read and i cant wait for the next 2 (i think there will be 2 more) books that you will write.
it always seemed like every second was an hour when i waited for your book “the secret of the corpse eater”.
i hope it wont be like that for the 5 book. i hope that wont happen this time.
  Happy Reading,
[Middle Dude signed his name.  So cute! but Mom is removing for privacy’s sake]
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Purchase Links:

Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iBooks | TBD

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Rafflecopter! Enter to win one of 5 digital copies of Last Siege of Haven (The Undertakers #4) by Ty Drago Click here

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Ty Drago does his writing just across the river from Philadelphia, where the Undertakers novels take place.  In addition to The Undertakers: Rise of the Corpses,The Undertakers: Queen of the Dead, and The Undertakers: Secret of the Corpse Eater, he is the author of The Franklin Affair and Phobos, as well as short stories and articles that have appeared in numerous publications, including Writer’s Digest.  He currently lives in southern New Jersey with his wife and best friend, the real Helene Drago née Boettcher.

Author Links:  Website Twitter Facebook Goodreads

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Middle Dude received an arc for his fair and honest review. Where he would never pan a book (He’s cool like that) He has, like his older brother, respectfully declined to review a book after reading. He wouldn’t have typed all that out if he didn’t feel strongly about the book.

Book Review: The Artisans by Julie Reece

I’ve been looking forward to this book release for a long time. Julie Reece is the author of CRUX, which is one of my favorite paranormal/mythical novels.

Now she’s out with a brand new YA novel. Woohoo!

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The Artisans is a “Southern Gothic”. I had no idea what that meant, so I was surprised when it started to get a little scary. (At one point, I even had to shut my eyes, which made me remember that I was reading a book, which is a little hard to do with your eyes shut.) It is a creepy read at times, but only one spot got “gory” (Which was probably mild by horror standards, but it made me cringe a little.)

This is a loose Beauty and the Beast retelling, with a touch of the cobbler fairy tale thrown in for good measure.

A teenage girl is blackmailed into designing clothes in this “mean but cute” rich dude’s mansion in order to save her father. But there’s a catch – the mansion is haunted. And Mr. Hotness might have a few family secrets.

Ooooooo, yes,

They are the scary kind.

I enjoyed this book a lot, especially the last 30% or so when things started to heat up between the main characters, and the ghosties started to get a little… ummm, “impatient”. The last ten percent or so flew by. This is great for romance fans who don’t mind a little “boo” mixed in with their love story.

What is interesting though, is that this book is a duology, which means there is another book coming out. I am very interested to see where the author takes us in the next book, because The Artisans definitely had the feel of a stand alone. There is really nothing “left hanging”. So, if you are the type that likes a stand alone, don’t worry about picking up The Artisans. It definitely ends, and ends satisfactorily.

I would recommend this book for a nice quiet weekend read, or a fun book to hide under the covers with.

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Purchase Links:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | kobo | TBD | Goodreads

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Five (5) winners will receive a digital copy of The Artisans by Julie Reece (INT)

Click here to enter the rafflecopter!

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About Julie Reece

Born in Ohio, I lived next to my grandfather’s horse farm until the fourth grade. Summers were about riding, fishing and make-believe, while winter brought sledding and ice-skating on frozen ponds. Most of life was magical, but not all.

I struggled with multiple learning disabilities, did not excel in school. I spent much of my time looking out windows and daydreaming. In the fourth grade (with the help of one very nice teacher) I fought dyslexia for my right to read, like a prince fights a dragon in order to free the princess locked in a tower, and I won.

Afterwards, I read like a fiend. I invented stories where I could be the princess… or a gifted heroine from another world who kicked bad guy butt to win the heart of a charismatic hero. Who wouldn’t want to be a part of that? Later, I moved to Florida where I continued to fantasize about superpowers and monsters, fabricating stories (my mother called it lying) and sharing them with my friends.

Then I thought I’d write one down…

Hooked, I’ve been writing ever since. I write historical, contemporary, urban fantasy, adventure, and young adult romances. I love strong heroines, sweeping tales of mystery and epic adventure… which must include a really hot guy. My writing is proof you can work hard to overcome any obstacle. Don’t give up. I say, if you write, write on!


Eleven-Year-Old’s Review of “The Three Thorns”: Brotherhood and the shield by @Michael_Gibney @chapterxchapter @tantrumbooks @month9books

TTT-CoverI figured a middle-grade review would be best coming from a middle-grader. Here is what he had to say, in his own words:


What was the book about?

It was about three orphans who band together when a bunch of guys tried to kill them. They end up traveling to a new magical world and find out that they have special powers and are part of a prophecy that says they will bring down the evil emperor.

What did you like about the book?

I liked how there was lots of action and adventure. There wasn’t just talking all the time. There were a lot of fight scenes, and it never got boring.

Who was your favorite character?

Tommy was my favorite. He was the oldest of the kids, and he was really mean when the story started, but he changed over the course of the book.

TTT-CoverTell me about the bad guy.

He has assassins and a big army. You don’t really see him to much.

You mostly see the big scary assassins that are nine feet tall and in every fight scene. They are really more like the bad guys in the story.

What was your favorite part?

When they broke out of the orphanage, everyone chased them. Mr. Jennings offered a year of work off to any of the other orphans who caught the kids who escaped. There was so much action! And they forgot something and had to go back, and someone got caught and stuff, and it was really exciting.

On a scale of one to 5… One being that book you didn’t finish last year because it was boring, and five being the best book you ever read, how would you rate “The Three Thorns?”

TTT-CoverI think 4 stars.


There was a lot of action and a lot of chasing, but the part  where they were being taken to the castle didn’t have a lot of action.

There should have been some fight scenes to make it more interesting.

Would you be interested in reading the next book?

Yes. They ended it in a way that made me say “Omigosh I have to see what happens next!”

Would you recommend this book to your friends?

Yes, to my friends that like action adventure books.

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 A note from Mom:

There you have it, directly from my son. I have to say that each day he finished reading with a smile on his face. He is easily bored, and there are a lot of books in his “did not finish” pile. He does not put up with books that don’t keep his attention. There is a rafflecopter going on to promote this book. Click below to enter. Good luck!

Purchase Links:

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More about the book:


Three brothers born to a once powerful King were abandoned at birth and cast out into the old world as orphans – alone and unaware of the other’s existence or their royal heritage.

In the new world, by order of the false King, three of the most lethal assassins are sent to kill the children before they come of age and avenge their father’s throne.

But when the brothers find one another, Benjamin, Tommy and Sebastian must resist the temptation of magic and power if they are to defeat the unspeakable evil that has threatened them since birth.

The Three Thorns is book one in an exciting children’s fantasy series called The Brotherhood and the Shield from debut author Michael Gibney.


Michael Gibney began working in restaurants at the age of sixteen and assumed his first sous chef position at twenty-two. He ascended to executive sous chef at Tavern on the Green, where he managed an eighty-person staff. He has worked in the kitchens of Morgans Hotel Group, 10 Downing in Manhattan, and Governor in Brooklyn’s DUMBO, among many others. Over the course of his career, he has had the opportunity to work alongside cooks and chefs from many of the nation’s best restaurants, including Alinea, Per Se, Eleven Madison Park, Daniel, Jean Georges, Le Bernardin, Bouley, Ducasse, Corton, wd~50, and Momofuku.

In addition to his experience in the food service industry, Gibney also holds a BFA in painting from Pratt Institute and an MFA in nonfiction writing from Columbia University. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

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