In the Absence of You: Book Blitz + Giveaway

In The Absence Of You
Sunniva Dee
Publication date: June 28th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance

Aishe is running. Running from the burn of a love she knows will consume her.
Running from a soul mate she’s never even met.
If only she hadn’t been hired as a merch girl for the hottest indie band on earth.
If only she’d never laid eyes on its front man, Emil—intense, sexy, and so unlike the men of her culture.
If only she hadn’t fallen onto his lips, then into his bed.
If only her flame hadn’t exploded into a full-on forest fire.
If only Emil’s heart didn’t belong to someone else.
***

Emil is running. Running from a broken heart.
Running from who he was with her.
If only Zoe hadn’t left.
If only Aishe hadn’t been right there.
If only she hadn’t been so damn gorgeous—insistent—different.
If only he could control himself around her.
If. Only.

Goodreads / Amazon

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Excerpt:

AISHE

I come from a family that burns with love. You wouldn’t understand unless you were one of us. I’m not just talking my father and my mother—I’m talking every one of my ancestors. It’s in our genetic build to spend all of our energy on love.

Once we come of age, it strikes and blazes with a fire that eats you alive. This love is a plague that boils in my race and in my culture, and I wouldn’t know a different way unless I’d broken free and seen strangers love with milder flames.

Tonight, my eyes go from the merchandise on my table to the blond-headed burst of life hopping off the stage. His gaze shimmers with amusement, a cocky lip twitching as he slaps high-fives to guys and pinches girl-cheeks on his way over.

“Aishe! You got those super-tight, hot little tees with the broken heart thingy on the front? The ones the chicks dig?” he asks once he’s in front of me, Emil, the vocalist of Clown Irruption, one of the hottest alt-rock indie-bands out there. I’ve been their merch girl for a few months now. Each night, I zoom in on Emil with less and less difficulty.

“Yeah. Troll picked them up this morning,” I say referring to their tour manager.

“This is so cool—finally we see actual merch money,” Emil laughs out. Then he sets a hand to the table and squints at me. “You’ve done much better than your cousin. I mean, Shandor, man.” He shakes his head playfully. “He couldn’t draw dudes to the stand worth shit.”

My face loosens in a smile. I send a subtle glance at Shandor, who’s busy wrapping things up on stage, coiling cables and breaking down drums. To sell T-shirts wasn’t what he burned for. Shandor was born with the plague of our people too, but he hasn’t found his beloved yet. My people, we need something to obsess over, so if it’s not a man’s love for a woman or vice versa, it’s something else, and Shandor, he loves his music. Once the band promoted him from merch guy to monitors on stage, he recommended me to fill his spot, and voilà, here I am.

Shandor raises his head and stills on us, focus intent from under dark locks. He’s got a sixth sense for when guys chitchat with me. Like me, he left our traveling community years back, but the need to protect any girl of our people is so deep-rooted I doubt he ever questions it. Shandor would do everything in his power to stop any man, employer or not, from toying with his little cousin.

I straighten so that I’m tall for my height. Though I’m not overly curvy, I’m lean and strong. Supposedly, I’m also fiery, a bit fierce, a bit ferocious, traits that make me who I am, traits I don’t need here in the outside world as opposed to amongst those I was born to.

I intimidate most men with the stance I take right now, but I can’t intimidate Shandor. He glares, telling me without words what not to do, and next he pierces his stare into Emil’s back. Oblivious, Emil juts his index finger at the case of lukewarm beers behind me, wiggles it back and forth quickly, lips pursed in anticipation. “Hand over one of those babies, will ya?”

Gypsies fighting for man teaser

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Author Bio:

Between studies, teaching, and advising, Sunniva has spent her entire adult life in a college environment. Most of her novels are new adult romance geared toward smart, passionate readers with a love for eclectic language and engaging their brain as well as their heart while reading.

Born in the Land of the Midnight Sun, the author spent her early twenties making the world her playground. Southern Europe: Spain, Italy, Greece–Argentina: Buenos Aires, in particular. The United States finally kept her interest, and after half a decade in Los Angeles, she now lounges in the beautiful city of Savannah.

Sometimes, Sunniva writes with a paranormal twist (Shattering Halos, Stargazer, and Cat Love). At other times, it’s contemporary (Pandora Wild Child, Leon’s Way, Adrenaline Crush, Walking Heartbreak, and Dodging Trains, coming in late March 2016).

This author is the happiest when her characters let their emotions run off with them, shaping her stories in ways she never foresaw. She loves bad-boys and good-boys run amok, and like in real life, her goal is to keep the reader on her toes until the end of each story.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Pinterest / Instagram / Tsu.co

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Giveaway (INTL)

  • $50 gift card

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Book Review: Pretty Is by Maggie Mitchell

pretty is

Title: Pretty Is
Author: Maggie Mitchell
Publisher: Orion
Date: May 5th, 2016
Pages: 320
Format: ARC
Source: from Publisher for a review

 

Synopsis (from Goodreads): Everyone thought we were dead. What else could they think?

One summer, nearly twenty years ago, two twelve year olds
were abducted and kept captive in the forest.

There they formed a bond that could never be broken.

What really happened in the woods that summer?

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Review:

„Pretty is what pretty does.“

A dark and disturbing psychological thriller debut – perfect for fans of ICE TWINS and I LET YOU GO. <– that’s how this novel was pitched.

Now, I will take some liberty and say that it was dark because my eyes closed multiple times while reading. No matter how hard I tried to stay awake, this disturbingly boring novel just had that effect on me.
I know ICE TWINS is a huge hit and that book is on my tbr list for months now. However, if it’s anything like PRETTY IS, I won’t mind if it stayed on that list forever.
Somehow, I believe it is better then this novel because, in my opinion, writing as boring psychological thriller as this one couldn’t be an easy task to do.

Pretty Is follows two women who, when they were twelve years old girls, were captured by a thirty-something guy and spent several months with him in the woods.

Sounds interesting, right? That’s what I thought too.
Boy, how wrong I was!

This book is based on actual events that happened in real life.
We can say it was a tool Maggie Mitchell used to tell herself the end of the story she read about in an article more then few years ago.

To be honest, I blame the writing style.
This story had some potential but it was presented to us in such a boring way that even when I wanted to be engaded and care about it’s characters, I was already bored to death that I could bring myself to care.

Pretty Is is composed of four parts: three of them being told from two alternative prospectives, Lois’ and Carly-Mae’s (or Carly’s, because that is the new name she gave to herself). One part, the second one, is a piece of Lois’ book that she wrote, in which she speaks about her and Carly’s experience in the woods, but packed in work of fiction.

My main critic would go to the fact that Lois’ and Carly-Mae’s voices sounded exactly the same.
Those two women took different paths in life and I expected from them to sound different.
Lous being an english professor at university and Carly-Mae being an actress, I really expected from Lous to use some bigger words and to basically sound more educated.

An excerpt from the book called „Deep in the Woods“ also sounded the same (and I get that it sounded the same as Lois POV, because she wrote it), and all four parts were just plain boring.

Fourth part had more action in it but when we came to it, it was too late already. I just couldn’t care less.

We never got the main answer we actually wanted but were left with the conclusion that, sometimes, there are no answers.
I get that, because that is what happens in real life sometimes, but in my whole honesty, I feel like I have been robbed for several hours I spent reading this book.
And I am sorry I feel that way, and I am even more sorry when I think that the author has put so many hours, days, maybe even months into creating this novel and here I am, giving you my honest review and not saying anything good.
But that is how honesty works.

The story ended with an opened ending but, as I already said, when I got to that point I didn’t care anymore. I was just glad it was over.

2

Three Short Book Reviews: The Unexpected Everything, The Nearly-Weds and Through the Looking Glass, and What Alice Found There

Recently, my good Goodreads friend and a blogger, Lola from Hit or Miss Books , gave short reviews to multiple book in the same post. You can read it here.

I really liked that idea and because of Lola I got an inspiration to do similar thing.

I decided to post three short reviews for book I read but didn’t feel like writing full lenght reviews about them.

 

The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson

the unexpected everything

The Unexpected Everything was a really fun summery read. It follows the story of Andie who is a politician’s daughter. Because of the scandal behind her father’s name, her summer plans changed and she finds herself a job as a dog walker.
Along the way, she meets a cute guy and you can  all guess where the story goes from there…

The story also focuses on friendship and how, with time, we can just grow apart.
With some cute scenes, swoony moments and some predictble situations handled in an unimaginable way, this book is one that should be on your tbr list for this summer.
I highly, highly recommend it to every ya contemporary lover.

Who could say no to this adorable cover anyway?

3,75

The Nearly-Weds by Jane Costello

the nearly weds I had some fun time reading this book.

The story takes place in Boston where our main character Zoe goes as an English Babysit.

If you didn’t know, this book is a winner of Romantic Novelists’ Association Romantic Comedy Award.
That being said, I don’t think I have to tell you it is full of funny situations and toughts.

Zoe was a great narrator and I think it would be awesome if there was movie based on this book.
Who knows, maybe one day we’ll have a chance to see it.

4

 

Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There by Lewis Carroll

alisa I had the strangest dream.
I dreamed I found myself in Wonderland, went there trough the looking glass, but while I was there, I couldn’t remember what Wonderland looked like.

After I woke up, I decided it was the best time for me to finally read this book and find my answers.

When I was growing up, I liked watching Trough the Looking Glass animated movie better then Alice in Wonderland, even if it wasn’t Disney’s.

Now when I was reading it, some pictures from that movie came to my mind, I was reminiscing about some scenes I complitely forgot about.

What took me by surprise was how I knew some quotes even though I couldn’t have know them from that very movie.

Also, I noticed how some characters that weren’t in the first book, but were in Disney’s movie for the first time showed up here, in Trough the Looking Glass.

When I look at them only as books, I can’t say I’m sure which story I like better.
I think this one made me smile more often, even if I think that Alice in Wonderland has better quotes in it.

5

Book Review: Martini Henry by Sara Crowe

martini henry

Title: Martini Henry
Author: Sara Crowe
Publisher: Penguin Random House UK, Doubleday
Date: June 16th, 2016
Pages: 416
Format: ARC
Source: from Publisher for a review

 

Synopsis (from Goodreads): Life isn’t an exact science. Things can be troublesome. Like pregnant step-mothers, the ins-and-outs of French existentialism . . . having an unexceptional name.

In 1988, seventeen-year-old Sue Bowl has a diary, big dreams and £4.73. What she wants most of all is to make it as a writer, as well as stop her decadent aunt Coral spending money she doesn’t have.

Living in their crumbling ancestral home should provide plenty of inspiration, but between falling in love, hunting for missing heirlooms and internship applications, things keep getting in the way.

So when a young literary professor moves in and catches Sue’s eye, life begins to take an unexpected turn . . .

From the author of Campari for Breakfast, a witty and enchanting novel about what happens after you think you’ve grown up and fallen in love, perfect for fans of I Capture the Castle, Love, Ninaand Where’d You Go Bernadette.

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Review:

From the very moment I heard (or should I say read) about Martini Henry being published, I had a strong feeling this novel will be right for me. I was right.
It was totally my cup of tea, that I enjoyed with cups and cups of tea.

The story follows Sue Bowl who goes to Greece to participate in creative writing course. There, she stumbles upon a book called FOR THE CONCERN OF THE RICH AND THE POOR. She realizes that book she found is not the one of fiction genre, but is probably a work of someone who knew her predecessors, as some of things that happened there were happening on her aunt’s property.

Martini Henry is written in one of the most interesting ways I have ever came across.
There is a Sue’s diary from where we follow the main story and it is the biggest part of the book.

Sue want to be a writer and, even though she doesn’t have a college degree, she reads a lot and is very skilled when it comes to expressing herself.
She likes to use big words and everytime she learned the new one she likes to make a note about it.

Then, there are notes, letters and lines Sue receives or sees while we follow her story.
We also get a glimpse of her work of fiction and can see how her personal life reflects on her writing.

Along with all that, Martini Henry contains small parts of FOR THE CONCERN OF THE RICH AND THE POOR, a 3000 pages long book that Sue reads.

There is so many good things I want to say about Martini Henry that I don’t even know where to start…

The writing style is really good and so beautiful, I would even dare to call it perfect.

Sue’s story takes place in 1988 and it really felt like it was written in that time period.
FOR THE CONCERN OF THE RICH AND THE POOR takes place after 1850 and, because I never read any book from that period in english, I can’t judge if the writing was authentic. However, I can tell that it sounded like it could be and that the writer captured the difference between Sue’s and London’s (that is the narrator of FOR THE CONCERN OF THE RICH AND THE POOR) in a really, really good way.

I also want to state that the book Sue was reading wasn’t there just for the sake of being, but had it’s own function and it intertwined with Sue’s story.

Martini Henry is a piece of literary fiction. That means, it’s pacing is on the slow side.
It took me some time to really get into this book (I would say something like 70 pages) and I think taking my time with it was the best decision I have made, because I really feel like I experienced Sue’s story in the best possible way.

The same goes with it’s characters too. It took some time to get to know them but after I used to them I got attached to them as well.
Sue, her aunt Coral and Joe were my favorites (especially Joe).

This is story is not just about chasing a dream, but is also about self discovery and about relationships with people around us.

As you may know, english is not my native language and I often like to emphasize that I am still in a learning process.
Thanks to this book, I discovered so many new words that now I would highly recommend it to anyone who wants to expand his vocabulary.

Not only did Sara Crowe did an amazing job when it comes to presenting this story to us in an attractive way, but I feel like the editors did a perfect job too.
We can clearly see that there has been so much effort put in order to bring this book to life, especially closer to the end.
If you ask me, all their hard work was worth it.

A copy of my Martini Henry goes to my special shelf where I keep my very few books that I want to reread many times in my lifetime because I feel like I can learn something new from it everytime I read it.

4,5

Waiting on Wendesday (#11): The One That Got Away by Melissa Pimentel

wow

Waiting on Wendesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine. It spotlights upcoming releases we can’t wait to read.

This week I am eagerly anticipating:

the one that got away

The One That Got Away by Melissa Pimentel

Publisher: Penguin

Publication Date: August 11th, 2016

Summary:

Ruby and Ethan were perfect for each other. Until the day they suddenly weren’t.

Ten years later, Ruby’s single, having spent the last decade focusing on her demanding career and hectic life in Manhattan. There’s barely time for a trip to England for her little sister’s wedding. And there’s certainly not time to think about seeing Ethan there for the first time in years.

But as the family frantically prepare for the big day, Ruby can’t help but wonder if she made the right choice all those years ago? Because there’s nothing like a wedding for stirring up the past…

 

Why am I waiting?

When I first read the blurb I couldn’t help but think this would be a perfect romantic movie, if it ever gets to be filmed.

I can’t recall when was the last time I read a book about two old lovers meeting again after more then few years, and to be honest, I kind of feel like I need that kind of story in my life.

That is why I simply can’t wait to read The One That Got Away.

Plus, the cover is just too cute!!

A Summer of Secrets by Alice Ross: Book Review (Blog Tour)

summer of secrets for JENNY

 

I am so happy to be today’s host for A Summer of Secrets blog tour. I enjoyed reading this story and would like to thank Jenny from Nevrland Blog Tours for giving me this opportunity.

A Summer of Secrets

A perfect, feel-good summer read about love, life and family.
One long hot summer. Secrets never stay buried for long…

Portia is determined to restore Buttersley Manor, her family’s crumbling ancestral home, to its former glory. Yet she has a feeling that there are a few forgotten skeletons in the dust-covered cupboards.

Jenny has put her life on hold for far too long. It’s time to finally start living and to dig up those hopes and dreams she’s kept hidden all these years – but is she brave enough?

Rich is happily married with a beautiful wife and lovely daughter. In fact, his world is perfect until a very unexpected consequence of his past walks through the door…

Joe would like nothing more than to travel back in time to when he and Gina were happy. But is it too late to rescue what they once had?

One thing’s for sure, nothing’s ever quite what it seems when it comes to life in the country!

Goodreads * Amazon

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Review:

Four characters, four stories, one village, one short book. That all equals one enjoyable summer read.
And as a cherry on top, it has a cute cover with bright colors that makes you feel good just when you look at it.

A Summer of Secrets follows four different characters: Portia, Jenny, Rich and Joe who’s lives intertwine as they live in the same place, a little village called Buttersley.

From all the stories in the book, I think Joe’s one was the most interesting one. However, not one of them grabbed my attention from the very start and after I finished the whole book, I can’t say I was touched by either of them.

However, I think this is still a very good read and would likely recommend it for days when you want to read something light that will bright up your day and make you forget the world around you.

The writing style was simple and easily readable. It does not have any memorable quotes just like the whole book does not have any memorable situations, but when you take everything in and out, the final product is still very good.

This is second book in the series but can easily be read as standalone.
In fact, you don’t have to read the first book in order to read this one because it follows totally different cast.

It is written in third person.

Now, after everythig I wrote so far, you probably think I wasn’t emotionally engaged when it comes to this novel, but that is not true.
In fact, at some scenes  I even wanted to transform myself into Buttersley and shake some characters, and the lawyer in me wanted to give Joe and Rich some legal advices.
I felt sorry over Jenny and it kind of broke my heart to see how she gave up her life in order to make her mother happy and how she couldn’t find the strenght in herself to rebel.

All in all, I am pretty satisfied with this book. Yes, it does have some flaws that could easily be solved with editing, and yes, it will probably vanish from my mind few months from now, but it still kept me entertained and made me feel better.

The end was okay, but I think Rich’s and Joe’s stories could have been more developed.

If there will be the next book in the series I believe it will follow some other characters which is good but ashame at the same time, because I feel like Rich, Joe, Jenny and Portia have more stories to tell and it would be interesting to read where their lives would bring them.

3

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About the author:

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Alice Ross used to work in the financial services industry where she wrote riveting, enthralling brochures about pensions and ISAs that everyone read avidly and no one ever put straight into the bin.

One day, when nobody was looking, she managed to escape. Dragging her personal chef (aka her husband) along with her, she headed to Spain, where she began writing witty, sexy, romps designed to amuse slightly more than pension brochures.

Missing Blighty (including the weather – but don’t tell anyone), she returned five years later and now works part-time in the tourism industry.

When not writing, she can be found scratching out a tune on her violin, walking her dog in wellies two sizes too big (don’t ask!), or standing on her head in a yoga pose.

Twitter * Website

Midsummer’s Eve Giveaway Hop

midsummer eve hop

Welcome to Midsummer’s Eve Giveaway Hop, hosted by BookHounds.

In this giveaway, I am giving you a chance to win a book of your choice, worth 16 US$ or less, from The Book Depository.

The giveaway is international as long as TBD ships to your country.

After you enter this giveaway, don’t forget to visit other blogs for more giveaways.

 

You can enter here:

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DISCLAIMER:

  • This giveaway is international as long as The Book Depository ships to your country.
  • You must be 18+ old to enter or have your parent’s permission to enter (because I’ll need to ask you to give me your adress so I could send the book to you).
  • I am not responsible for the shipment, but am responsible to order a book on time (The Book Depository is responsible to deliver you a book on time and in a good condition).
  • Once chosen, winner will be emailed and will have 48 hours to reply, otherwise another person will be chosen as a winner
  • NO CHEATING! Cheaters will be disqualified

Good Luck! :)
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