Tuesday, December 31, 2013

New Years Eve Blog Hop

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There it is, 2013 closing its doors on our dreams and 2014 opening its windows to let our new passions and desires in.

What are you wanting to achieve in 2014? Me, I have 60 books I want to read, 12 stories I want to write and loads of movies I want to see with the hubby. I am exhausted just thinking about how busy I am going to be this upcoming year. But I love it!!!

This might seem crazy but I thrive on all of this. I LOVE Reading, I LOVE Writing and I LOVE spending time with the hubby.

So what I think I really am saying is I'm going to spend 2014 getting back to my roots, to myself and my family. That's what I am looking forward too. Writing out my crazy imagination, relaxing with a good book and curling up at the end of each and every day with the man I love and cherrish.

I hope that 2013 was good and full of happy memories for you the visitor on my site. For me, there was a mixture of the good, the bad and the need to wipe from my brain.

2014 is going to be amazing, I can feel it.

I am excited on some of the books I am going to be able to share with all of you. I have so many to tell you about. (Reviews in Jan and Feb!)

I am going to do a giveaway on my blog ... it's going to be simple -- you tell me what the one thing is that you hope to achieve next year that ISN'T something typical. What I mean is, don't say you want to lose weight, that's a normal goal. Tell me you want to read 300 books, you want to paint a picture, you want to write a short story or learn to play the piano. Give me something creative and fun. Everyone who participates will receive a free ebook from The Art of Safkhet selection. Just leave your goal and your email and I'll shoot you over a surprise. OH, and specify, Kindle, Epub or PDF!

Thanks and Happy New Years!!

New Years Eve Blog Hop


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AJ Williams

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Sunday Review: Hostage by Kay Hooper

Title: Hostage

Author: Kay Hooper

Genre: Mystery
Published: November 25th, 2013

Purchase: Amazon & Barnes & Noble

Source: I purchased this copy on my own.

Blurb: Haven operative Luther Brinkman has been sent into the wilderness of the Appalachian Mountains of Tennessee to locate escaped felon Cole Jacoby, a mentally unstable bank robber. Supposedly, Jacoby hid more than ten million dollars from his last heist before he was captured—and rather mysteriously escaped federal custody. And once Brinkman finds Jacoby, the agent is left severely wounded, with no way to convey his location to Haven.

Callie Davis, an agent with the FBI’s Special Crimes Unit, has been in the area for some time, due to the foresight of her boss and unit chief, Noah Bishop. But when she finds the wounded Brinkman, her rescue mission turns into a deadly game of cat and mouse.

What neither Luther nor Callie know is that their quarry is far more than an escaped bank robber. And that in hunting him, they will find themselves being hunted by him, and will discover him to be the worst monster either of them has ever known


Oh Bishop -- How I love you.

Kay Hooper is such an inspiration with her FBI Series. I always forget how much I really love all of the characters until I"m knee deep in her new releases.

This story had three rotating story lines. Hollis and her ghosts on one side of the vortex, Callie and her skills of reflecting negative energy on the other. Then Cole Jacoby in the center of it all.

There were a few twists and turns that happened that I didn't see, but that's always the case when I read a Kay Hooper novel. She keeps me drawn in and excited always.

This was an excellent addition tothe Bishop Series. And with all of the Bishop books my one complaint is, I NEED MORE BISHOP!!!! Bishop and Tony cracked me up with their ending banter. I found myself giggling at Tony's comments.

What a great read and I really can't wait for the next book in this wonderful series.

Read - A -Thon: Remembering 2013

- Best of 2013


-Worst of 2013


-Favorite new author

Steven dos Santos

-Book that surprised you


-Book that disappointed you


Saturday, December 28, 2013

Best of 2013 - Year in Review

It's Ashley's BEST OF 2013 post.

It's going to contain a little bit of everything and keep in mind this means that I experienced this in 2013 not that it originated in 2013 necessarily-- So hang tight and here ... we ... go!

--GAMEBOARD OF THE GODS - I was so hesitant to read this book. I had read all the bad reviews and my opinion had been swayed that I woudln't like it. But then, a freind convinced me, and I picked it up. Thank God I did! Richelle Mead did such a fantastic job! The PNR fans who can't switch to Sci-Fi were just too hard on her. I am awaiting the next book in the Game of X series and hope she doesn't take too long getting it out to us!

--THE CULLING - This book was just drop dead freaking AMAZING! I loved it couldn't put it down and I am ANXIOUSLY awaiting the sequel. I loved interviewing the author and seriously cannot wait for the next one!!

--MALICIOUS - This book I devoured in one day. It comes in a close third. The story was so captivating that I just had to read it while I was at work even. It became addicting!

--FORGED - This was my first ARC I have read for another author who isn't a friend of mine already and it was such an enjoying read. Love this series in general but there was just something special about reading it in ARC form.

-- STYXX - I am debating in my own head about this -- While I only gave it a 4-star I really loved that it drew so much emotion out of me. It made me angry mad and furious at SK and the characters. Which to me, is just as important as the star rating. SK's writing is great, the style, the art form, and this book is worthy of all the hype it received.

--LES MISERABLES - WOW That's all I can say to this movie. It was just drop dead amazing. this sound track has gotten me through many nights where I just needed inspiration and there it was, helping me along. The cast's voice melts me each and every time I listen to any of their songs.

--THOR - Holy Freaking Hotness Batman! Yeah, Thor - he just makes you purr. There was SO MUCH about this movie that I loved. The only thing I didn't like was that it ended! Loki was my favorite I think - I am always attracted to evil. Deff go watch it!

-- ANCHORMAN 2 - Now this one I was extremley hesitant of putting on this list. My husband pointed out to me that I hadn't laughed this hard in a movie as I did in this one and sadly he was right. I just wish the ending wasn't so over the top. But I did enjoy it and the movie did make me laugh.

--PITCH PERFECT - One of my friends had been telling me what a great movie this was and then one day I caved. Yup it was a kick ass kinda flick


This moment was quite hard to say it was a let down as it propelled my blog into a whole new element but the movie itself was a blah. MAN OF STEEL, what a dull let down. My blog post about it however went viral and that was huge! Who knew that some random opinion of a Houston Blogger would cause the Super Hero forums to explode! I got a great laugh for about two weeks and I thank all my fellow geeks for putting my blog into the top Google Blogs of the summer! haha!!


The day I walked into my new job at my old place of employment on August 1st. I was so freakin glad to be back there!

So this was my wrap up of 2013. Next year I hope to have a lot more categories.
See ya'll tomorrow as I continue my end of the year blog count downs each day!

Friday, December 27, 2013

Read - A - Thon: Rainbow Book Spine

Rainbow Book Spine....grab books from your shelf that have the following spine colors to make a rainbow: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, & violet

Vonnies Reading Corner & A Night's Dream of Books

Here are a few books on my To Be Read List for 2014


Last night I finished FORGED, the ARC by Jacquelyn Frank. And let me just say, it was freaking amazing!!!! I can't wait fort he next book to come out in January so I can read what happened before this ARC. The way everything sits now, FORGED will be my first five star review of 2014.

Catch the host Vonnie's main post at Vonnie's Reading Corner

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Last Minute Read - A - Thon!!!


It's the last push of the year and Vonnie's Reading Corner and A Night's Dream of Books are hosting a Read - A - Thon! If you love reading - grab a book, cozy up and join them and their blog world friends in that last struggle to finish your list!

Goals --

I want to read two more books by the end of the year - That will bring my grand total up to fifty-six for 2013, six more than I aimed for.

What two am I reading?

Forged, an ARC copy from Random House by Jaquelyn Frank.
Serendipity by Janet Nissenson, ARC from the Author

Another goal that I have is I'd like to hammer out the final book count/list I want to read for 2014. I want to start a list, twenty five books that I want to read for me, then twenty five books I want to read for review blog tours, and then ten random books tossed in here and there. Bringing my total to sixty for 2014. Now, the ten random and the twenty five for blog tours obviously I won't have those made out, but the twenty five I want to read for me - that will be a main list I make up.

I will also post reviews for all sixty of these books inside the 2014 year.

So come and join myself and my blogging friends in our 2013 end of the year fun!

Catch the host, Vonnie at Vonnie's Reading Corner

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Christmas Day and all through the house...

It is that time of year that everyone breaks out their holiday memories and pours the emotion out into the bloggersphear to expose all of you to a little bit of them that you might not have known otherwise.

This blogger is doing just that!

I was talking to my mom the other day on the phone and she was telling me how these little posts I write about my childhood warm her heart. It got me thinking about what on earth will I post about for Christmas. That's when it hit me, the year i swore Santa was real!

Now I am not sure exactly how old I was, somewhere between seven and nine. I'm guessing eight. My dad would know better.

That year my brother and I were with our father for Christmas and we went to his parents (my grandparents) house in New Orleans for the celebration. My grandma had gone all out, she even hired a Santa to come and deliver presents for us.

I mean come on, it's SANTA! What kid wouldn't love that?!?

To make matters more interesting, when Santa left after giving out our presents I heard that sacred noise. The clattering of reindeer on the rooftop! I call out and inform everyone, "I hear reindeer!" Or at least in my memory that's what I did haha. My late uncle Mark begin to inform me that, no, sadly, it was not reindeer.

"But uh huh, yes it was!" I argued. I rushed to the window and looked out into the vast darkness of the Christmas Eve night and that's when I saw it!

"Uncle Mark! It's Rodolph! See his nose!!!"

Then ensues the debate. "Ashley that's a plane."

"No! it's Rodolph Uncle Mark!"

On and on it went, and still to this day the eight year old inside of me swears that yes! There was clattering of  hoves on my grandparents rooftop and YES! Rodolph was taking flight leading Santa and his sleigh through the night sky.

I really laugh when I think about this memory. It warms my heart and makes me smile. I've been trying to remember a Christmas before this one and I'm coming up short at the moment. I've seen videos of previous holidays but I really think this is the first one I remember on my own. And that makes it extra special.

It also makes me sad because it reminds me of the family member we lost far to early in life. My uncle was a wonderful man, a great father, and the best damn uncle the world ever had. He would have been 52 this year.

So it seems this year when I think back on Christmas and the holiday that most of the world comes to celebrate with gift exchanges and meal sharing, I am reminded of what the Spirit of Christmas is to me.


This year I am taking an extra moment to remember those who have gone before me. Those who wait for me beyond the golden gates in Heaven. And those family members who helped create a little piece of me, even if it was the tiniest spark.

Grandpa Pete, Grandma Blanche, Aunt Lee and Uncle Mark. My love for you shines a little brighter today.

(Photo is myself, my dad (left) and my late uncle Mark (right)

Monday, December 23, 2013

Fire and Ice Book Tour: Deviltry Afoot by Carol Pritt

Title: Devilitry Afoot

Author: Carol Pritt

Genre: Occult, Paranormal
Published: September 3rd, 2013

Purchase: Amazon & Barnes & Noble

Source: I received a copy of this for a honest review

Blurb: Seeking justice for her daughters murder Tina must seek answers in the supernatural realm. Terror is spreading over Pendale. Love is pitted against a dreadful force.

I wanted to read this book because I enjoy a good horror book. I like seeing the imagination of others. This book concept was unique and different. The ideas that this author came up with were fresh and that was important to me.

My main and only issue with this book was at times it was hard to follow with chapter changes. It skipped through time because that's how the story line was meant to be followed but the transitions weren't always smooth.

I would have liked to see a bit more gore but I know I like more detail than others in that regard.

If you want a fresh idea for a horror read them you should consider this book. The writing style was easy to read and Tina was an extremely likeable character.

I give this book three and a half stars.


Guest Post


It is the season for a good scare.  My novel Deviltry Afoot provides that.
I don’t think a paranormal novel is just for Halloween though.  The popularity of television shows like Ghost Hunters, Paranormal Witness, Ghost Mine, and others shows the interest in such matters
It is escapism from day to day cares.

It releases tension as waking from a nightmare does.
I can remember loving Dracula and the Wolf Man movies as a child.  There was also the Twilight Zone and others   I was frightened at the viewing but I did really expect a visit form a vampire in real life.

When I am home alone late at night any nervousness comes from the fear of an intruder not from some supernatural being.

What fascinates us about the paranormal?  Better minds than mine have explored this issue.
I only know when writing the about weird and occult I become lost in that realm and nothing is impossible.

Good and evil do exist. 

About the Author:

Carol Pritt lives in the northeast with her family. She has two Associate degrees, one in Liberal Arts, and the other in Journalism from the local community college. Ms. Pritt enjoys writing, reading, spending time with her family, and playing with her pets. This is her first novel.

Author Links:

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Desert Rose Blog Tour: Spotlight Heide Garrett

3 Awesome Short Stories that chronicle the journey of a girl who believes in fairy tales.

These Contemporary Fairy-Tale Fantasies, published by Half-Faerie Publishing, are preludes to Heidi Garrett's Once Upon a Time Today  collection!

Short Story #1:

-Title: The Girl Who Watched for Elves (Once Upon a Time Today #0.0)

-By: Heidi Garrett

-Published: October 24th, 2013

-Pages: 27


Do you believe in fairy tales?

One afternoon, a young woman visits a tarot reader. When he interprets the images in a twenty-card spread, she begins to understand her past, present, and future, in a new way.

Follow her transformational journey as she rediscovers a sense of life's magic.


If you don’t have a Kindle reader, you can find an app for any device here!


Short Story #2:

-Title: The Girl Who Dreamed of Red Shoes (Once Upon a Time Today #0.5)

-By: Heidi Garrett

-Published: October 19th, 2013

-Pages: 31


When she listens to the cantadora tell an old fairy tale, her life changes.

Disconnected from her spirit, a young woman lives a life of longing. She feeds herself reckless amounts of doughnuts and candy, but there's never enough to fill the void inside her.

What will?

She comes across an audiobook exploring an old fairy tale, and can't resist buying it. When she gets home, and listens to the story of The Red Shoes, the threshold between her dreams and daydreams begin to blur...

If you don’t have a Kindle reader, you can find an app for any device here!


Short Story #3:

-Title: The Girl Who Couldn’t Sing (Once Upon a Time Today #0.75)

-By: Heidi Garrett

-Published: November 3rd, 2013

-Pages: 29


Heather Baker struggles to find the balance between fantasy and reality in her everyday life. Enticed by Neptune, the planet that rules everything hazy and glamorous--she's desperate to become the next indie singer/songwriter sensation. Dogged by Saturn, the planet that rules obstacles and everything practical--she's confronted with the limitations of her abilities and talent. Which planet will win?

***Includes links to songs from the original CD, The Faith of a Crucified Child, and the DVD, My Name is Heather Baker, Welcome to My World***


If you don’t have a Kindle reader, you can find an app for any device here!


About the Author

Heidi Garrett is the author of the contemporary fairytale novella collection, Once Upon a Time Today. In these stand-alone retellings of popular and obscure fairy tales, adult characters navigate the deep woods of the modern landscape to find their Happily Ever Afters. The Original Fairy Tale short stories: The Girl Who Watched For ElvesThe Girl Who Dreamed of Red Shoes, and The Girl Who Couldn’t Sing are a prelude to that collection.

She is also the author of The Queen of the Realm of Faerie series, a fairy tale/high fantasy mashup about a young half-faerie, half mortal woman who must save both the Enchanted and Mortal Worlds.

Heidi was born in Texas, and in an attempt to reside in as many cities in that state as she could, made it to Houston, Lubbock, Austin, and El Paso. Heidi now lives in Eastern Washington state with her husband, their two cats, her laptop, and her Kindle.

Being from the South, she often contemplates the magic of snow, and hopes to remind readers that:

Once upon a time, you lived in an enchanted world…

Learn more about Heidi and enjoy her stream-of-consciousness reading journal, Eating Magic, at: www.heidigwrites.blogspot.com

If you want to say Hello, give her a shout out on Twitter: www.twitter.com/heidigwrites

She is now on Facebook: www.facebook.com/heidigwrites

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Secret Cravings Publishing Author: Tamsin Flowers - The Crimson Bond

What to give your vampire for Christmas…
It's so tough every year finding the right gifts for your friends and family, but it's even tougher if you have to buy a present for a vampire! What can you give to a man who's too glamorous for socks or a woman who won't eat chocolate?

Here are a few ideas of things they might like…

·         The male vampire in your life would certainly appreciate a new black cape - we suggest a fine worsted wool, perhaps with a black fur trim for the winter.

·         A teeth whitening kit to keep those pointed fangs sparkling bright.

·         How to Tame and Train Your Bat - this book is absolutely essential for any vamps with a pet bat.

·         For vampire girls, red lip gloss never goes amiss - the shinier the better.

·         If the love of your life is a bloodsucker, what about buying them an antique ring, preferably showing a vampire coat of arms.

·         The love books? They've probably read the Bram Stoker classic but they'll be fascinated by a biography of Bela Lugosi, Max Schreck, Lon Chaney Jr, Boris Karloff or Christopher Lee.

·         Or if they prefer fiction, why not give them a copy of The Crimson Bond for their e-reader?

·         And avoid, at all costs, Twilight perfume and Buffy the Vampire Slayer board games!

Anyway, I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas holiday and enjoy whatever Santa brings you…


Willow Jackson develops an unhealthy obsession Etienne Corbeau; little does she realise he's a suave, sophisticated vampire.  After appearing in her dreams, Willow is astounded to find Etienne in her room for real and even more shocked when, in the throes of a passion she can’t resist, he sinks his teeth into her neck and drinks her blood. 

But Etienne is greedy and to save Willow's life, his wife Elouise forces her to drink vampire blood.  From this moment Willow is herself a vampire, forming an unbreakable bond with Elouise which forces her to choose between the beautiful new vampire and her husband of two centuries. 

As Willow learns to tame her bloodlust and vampire sex carries her to new heights of physical pleasure, Elouise is snatched away from her.  The battle lines are drawn: now she and Etienne will fight for possession of the woman they both love...

Even with the shutters thrown wide, there wasn’t enough of a breeze to dry the sweat off Willow Jackson’s skin as she lay writhing, naked and alone, on the huge double bed. But it wasn’t the heat keeping her awake. After all, she’d lived in Santa Fe for most of her nineteen years and it was still only spring. The mercury would rise far higher over the summer months.

It was an unhealthy obsession that was keeping Willow awake. An imaginary scenario played over and over in her mind. The heroine? Herself, naturally. The hero? Her creative writing tutor Etienne Corbeau, and it didn’t play out in the stuffy lecture hall where she spent Tuesday and Thursday mornings hanging on his every word. No, in her imagination they were in the woods. She would be standing with her back against the rough bark of a pine tree, feeling the scratch of it through the fine chiffon of her dress.   He would be walking toward her, tall and so sure of himself, pulling off his tie and discarding his shirt as he got closer. Revealing a sinewy, brown torso, lightly peppered with black hairs, making the breath catch in her throat, and lighting a fire between her legs. As he approached, his eyes would rake up and down her body. She would watch his chest heaving as his breath became ragged. Seconds later, they would come together in an urgent embrace.

But then, just as their mouths were about to fuse in a blistering kiss, just as she was about to surrender to his caress, the image would dissolve. Damn it. Always the same. She would be back in her bed, the sheets twisted around her legs and a sheen of sweat between her breasts. Frustrated and wanting him more than ever. She kicked the covers away and let a hand stray softly and slowly down her stomach toward the dull throbbing between her clammy thighs. But it was him she needed, not her own fingers.
She sat up sharply and dropped her head to her hands, elbows resting on bent up knees. Why was she torturing herself like this? She could never have him. He had to be at least ten years older than she was. She doubted whether he would give her a second glance if she was the sole women left on the planet. And he had a wife. Willow had seen them together more than once. The woman was stunningly beautiful and perfectly groomed, with expensive clothes that fit like a glove and never a hair out of place. So it was no surprise to see, in his wife’s presence, the suave and elegant Monsieur Corbeau had eyes for no one else. Another surge of longing swept over Willow as she remembered watching them getting into their car together at the end of school. A ravishing couple, evidently in love. Willow had noticed Etienne’s hand slide down the curve of his wife’s shapely rear as she’d climbed into the dark red Porsche, looking up at him with parted lips and an adoring glance.

Willow’s legs slackened and fell wide apart. She leaned back against the headboard and pressed her right palm hard against her downy mound of Venus. A sharp little moan escaped her mouth and she bit hard on her lower lip, hoping her roommate, Jordy, sleeping in the next room, hadn’t heard. In a moment her hand was slick with sweat and juice, her engorged clit pressing up hard against the base of her fingers. A tendril of toffee-colored hair fell across her face as she arched back in pleasure and her blue eyes closed as another image Etienne Corbeau flooded her mind. And her senses. If she couldn’t have him in real life, she would at least have him in her imagination.
This time the picture show didn’t stop and as she teased and twisted her nipples with one hand and explored the dark recess between her legs with the other. It was as if they were at last together.

“You want me, don’t you?” he whispered in her ear. She could virtually feel his hot breath on her neck.

She nodded, unable to speak, and in her mind she felt his body pressing tightly against hers.

“Then tell me,” he said. His voice sounded real in her ears.

“I want you,” she gasped. “I need you.”

“Use my name.”

She opened her eyes to be sure, but she was definitely alone in the room.
“Etienne, please come to me.”

Buy links
You'll find The Crimson Bond at Secret Cravings, Amazon, All Romance, Kobo, Barnes & Noble and Smashwords.

Tamsin Flowers
Tamsin Flowers loves to write light-hearted erotica, often with a twist in the tail/tale and a sense of fun.  In the words of one reviewer, 'Ms Flowers has a way of describing sexual tension that forces itself upon your own body.' Her stories have appeared in a wide variety of anthologies , for publishers including Cleis Press, Xcite Books and Go Deeper Press. She has now graduated to novellas with the intention of penning her magnum opus in the very near future.  In the meantime, like most erotica writers, she finds herself working on at least ten stories at once: while she figures out whose leg belongs in which story, you can find out more about her at Tamsin's Superotica or Tamsin Flowers.