Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Forged by Erin Bowman (Taken book 3)

SPOILER ALERT! If you haven’t read the first two books in the series, Taken and Frozen, Stop! I don’t want to ruin the series for you.

Please visit the Recaptains blog if you need a refresher on the first book in the series.
Epic Reads posted a series recap on their website.

“A rebel has to risk it all.”
“The time has come to take a stand.”

Two months have past and Gray Weathersby is tired of sitting around, waiting, and giving Frank an advantage. Two months of being in Pike with the Expats and nothing to show for it. Gray and his twin brother Blaine have drifted apart since their emotional reunion. Blaine wasn't there to witness their father’s death or Gray killing his own forgery. Blaine doesn’t life with the guilt knowing that half of Group A’s people died because of the decision he made to enter into an alliance with the Expats. Things are strained between he and Bree since she decided to put herself first. Gray knows that Frank still holds control over the real Emma and all of Claysoot. When Gray, Bree and the others are invited to a meeting with Vik, the leader of the Expats, and his second in command Adam, one look is all it takes for Gray to realize that something is wrong. Contact with the Rebel headquarters was lost earlier in the day.

It seems that Frank has attacked Cervice Valley without any warning. He either knew the coordinates or just struck the whole mountain range. Gray realizes that if Blaine had stayed behind, his brother would possibly be dead. Furious, Gary wants to know how long they're going to wait around while Frank strikes. Adam tells him that they have been trying to build support for their cause in order to be able to strike on multiple fronts. Gray notices Bree slightly shake her head and he realizes that she agrees with him but for now he needs to be quiet. Elijah and a crew will take a shuttle to the east and immediately survey the damage. Everyone else will meet back in the morning for another meeting. What should have been a night of celebration for Clipper's birthday, is now a night of devastation as he wonders if his mother is still alive.

Clipper is determined to still celebrate his birthday. At first, Gray is non-social but soon realizes that he can be with his friends and still worry about the future. At the bar, everyone including Bree is there. Clipper is happy throwing dates and Gray goes to get a drink. Soon, Jules comes over and starts to make a pass. Gray is having none of it and lets her know that there is only one girl for him. Jules spits back that Bree won't have anything to do with him. She leaves and makes her way over to Blaine. Before too long, they are flirting madly with one another. Sammy comes up and the two of them talk about what they hope their futures will bring. Neither initially mentions the girl of their desires. It's only been a week since either has talked about Emma. Gray realizes that he will always have feelings for Emma, just like he does for his family but his heart lies elsewhere. Sammy says that he should never give up on Bree and Gray lets him know that he doesn't plan on it.

The next morning, Gray sees Blaine freshly showered at the meeting. He never came back last night to his bunk and Gray is pleased that his brother has found someone. Vik tells the assembled group that they haven't received any word from Elijah. Adam busts in and asks if they know yet. Vik asks Gray if his group is still willing to play a part, there is something they can do. Their mission will be to see what the water treatment plant that lies on an island dividing the east from the west hides. Frank has had enough water for years. The heavily fortified plant has to be hiding something else. If Gray accepts, their mission will be to find out what it contains. Bree questions what they think is there in order to go after such a secured building. Seemingly insulted, Adam tells them that a spy has found a way in. Gray sees this as their chance to finally do something but Blaine disagrees, After their argument, Gray realizes that Blaine’s hesitation over doing things has always been an attempt to keep his brother safe. Checking on Bree before they head out, Gray tells her that he is never going to give up on her. She still trusts him but doesn't want anything more. He is not sure that he believes her but then wonders if he is just being insensitive. Giving her some space, Gray realizes that he has made more headway with her than he has in a long time by her reaction.

What will Gray and company discover on their mission? Can the Expats destroy Frank? Why did Frank have Harvey create forgeries? Has Cervice Valley been annihilated? Is the real Emma still alive? Will Gray be able to win back Bree’s heart? Will anyone return to Claysoot? Who makes it out alive?

Shocking twists and turns will have the reader racing to the end of these series. 

Visit Erin Bowman’s website.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

The Replaced by Kimberly Derting (The Taking book 2)

SPOILER ALERT! If you haven’t read the first book in the series, The Taking, Stop! I don’t want to ruin the series for you.

“How do you move forward after someone steals your past?”

It has been seventeen days since Kyra Agnew watched her boyfriend Tyler Wahl, her father and Agent Truman be abducted by the same aliens who took her five years earlier. The experiments/modifications they conducted on Kyra and the other Returned leaves their blood poisonous to humans. The only reason she and the others took Tyler to the Devil’s Hole to be abducted was a last ditch effort to save his life after he was accidentally exposed to Kyra’s blood. Her hope is that the aliens can cure him and be able to find him before the NSA’s Daylighter Division does.

While searching through a classified email that Jett intercepted from the NSA, they are discovered and locked out. Before that happens a popup containing only the word “supernova” is seen. Kyra is positive that it was from her father, a nickname he gave her. Simon and Jett try to convince her that it might be a trap, looking for the Returned. She takes in their looks of pity but is undeterred. The email from the NSA leads the to believe that the NSA might be holding Tyler at their Tacoma facility. Simon thinks that they should check it out even though it is the type of place the Returned should avoid. Kyra knows that Simon has his own reasons for going. She believes that the email is about Tyler because it was signed by Agent Truman, the same agent who disappeared the same night as Tyler and her father. Kyra is haunted by all that she has done and the unanswered questions. Jett knows that the Returned always come back after forty-eight hours. Kyra is the only known exception.

Simon, Jett and Kyra pack the SUV with supplies for their mission to rescue Tyler. Willow is tagging along but doesn’t think that the trip is a good idea. Things really take a weird turn when Natty decides to join them. The group is shocked even more when she and Thom share a tender goodbye. Things really get tense when Thom becomes the sixth man for the mission. He and Simon are able to put aside their differences during the trip. Throughout the drive, Kyra cannot help but wonder what Agent Truman might have in store for her.

Arriving at the Tacoma facility, they divide into two teams. Kyra isn’t happy that she isn’t initially on the team who will rescue Tyler. Plans are changed and Kyra will now be with Simon and Willow. She is floored to find out the plan for Jett’s team was to cause an explosion to draw attention away from their entrance. They make it to the enormous lab and find nothing. Willow goes off to search elsewhere, leaving Kyra and Simon in the main lab. Suddenly, the alarms stop blaring and the lights come back on. Hearing rushing footsteps, the two don’t know which way to run. Thanks to Kyra’s quick thinking and Simon’s steady hands, the two skip into a vent. Simon promises to take care of Kyra. Her worst fears come true when Agent Truman makes his presence known. He sends his best men out in hazmat suits to capture the dangerous teens. Looking behind them, Kyra sees a staircase leading down. They run through the maze of duct work until one of Truman’s agent grabs a hold of her wrist. He looks at her and says “It’s you!” Simon outs off some sort of knockout drug while Kyra holds her breath. The two are able to escape with Willow’s help.

Outside the building looking for the others, the three into Agent Truman again. He isn’t dressed in a hazmat suit like the others and is holding a gun. The trio is stunned when he pulls the trigger and shoots Simon. Willow goes to charge him and he shoots her as well.. Kyra cannot believe neither had blood spilled. Taking awhile to heal themselves, Several of Truman’s soldiers rush forward. They shoot a net at them, trapping Willow. Simon and Kyra run, leaving Willow behind, and meet up with the others.

Are Kyra and the others able to rescue Willow? Why wasn’t Agent Truman protected against Kyra’s blood? What has happened to Tyler? Will Kyra be able to find him? Was the popup message really from her father? Does Kyra’s heart completely belong to Tyler or is Simon worming his way? What is so special about Kyra that Agent Truman will stop at nothing to get her?

This trilogy will be completed in 2016.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

The Wicked Will Rise by Danielle Paige (Dorothy Must Die book 2)

SPOILER ALERT! If you haven’t read the first book in the series, Dorothy Must Die, Stop! I don’t want to ruin the series for you.

Please visit the Recaptains blog if you need a refresher on the first book in the series.

“My name is Amy Gumm - And I’m the other girl from Kansas. My mission? Kill Dorothy. And who is actually wicked?”

Oz is in disarray after Amy’s failed attempt at killing Dorothy. The Wizard has told her that the key to eliminating Dorothy will be to kill her three friends first. She does manage to kill the Tin Woodman and retrieve his clockwork heart. She and Ozma were carried off by Ollie and Maude to the queendom of the Wingless Ones and meet Queen Lulu. The members of the Order have disappeared and Amy is concerned about finding Nox. It seems that she has developed some feelings for him. When Pete resurfaces, she uncovers the truth about who he really is. As the landscape changes in Oz and the magic begins to flow again, Amy realizes one thing; she doesn’t know who she can trust.

Will Amy find Nox? Who is Pete? Can she trust the members of the Revolutionary Order of the Wicked? Will Princess Ozma ever be fit to rule Oz once again? And can Amy remove the Lion’s courage and take back the Scarecrow’s brain in her attempt to rid Oz from Dorothy’s rule?

Book three will be published in 2016 but two more prequel novellas will be released before the conclusion of the trilogy.

Visit Danielle Paige’s Facebook page.

Two prequel novellas have been published outlining Dorothy’s rise to power since Dorothy Must Die.
The Witch Must Burn - In which Jellia spends some time with Glenda at her castle.

The Wizard Returns - In which we learn what happened to the Wizard after he supposedly left Oz

Monday, April 6, 2015

Miss Mayhem by Rachel Hawkins (Rebel Belle book 2)

SPOILER ALERT! If you haven’t read the first book in the series, Rebel Belle, Stop! I don’t want to ruin the series for you.

“Some titles aren’t won - they’re earned.”

Since the disastrous night of the Cotillion, Harper Price, David Stark and Ryan Bradshaw have been trying to fulfill the duties of the roles that have been forced upon them. David is an Oracle and his “aunt” Saylor protected him, literally with her life. When she died, she passed on her powers as Mage to Ryan. With Harper as his Paladin, a superpowered warrior, and Ryan by his side, David hasn’t had a substantial vision since that night. A spell was cast at the Cotillion that intensified his powers, which included the ability to make more Paladins. David has no idea that Harper and Ryan have been working to keep his visions to a minimum and insubstantial.

While on a “mission” to keep a couple of Harper’s friends from a less than successful future marriage, David is struck by a substantial vision. All he will tell her is that they need to go, now. Harper sends Ryan a text to meet them at the twins’ house. It is an emergency. Ryan is waiting on them when they arrive and Harper fills him in on what he has missed. She has him alter the twins’ memories so that they don’t recall witnessing David’s vision. David is in a hurry, insisting that they need to leave right away. He drives the three of them out into the country and stops where a burnt plantation home once stood. In it’s place now is a beautiful replica that Harper can sense the magic surrounding it. Turns out that David has led them to the Ephors, the very group that Saylor died to protect him from.

The three walk inside the house. They are staring at a painting when a voice behind them says that it is titled, “The Oracle Speaks”. Standing behind them is a man in his forties, dressed in a suit. He informs them that the Ephors can help David with his visions. Harper reminds them about Saylor’s warnings but David asks Alexander where Bee is. Harper’s thoughts immediately turn to her missing best friend. The four of them move into a study to talk about the vision. Alexander states that the Ephors want to help David learn about his powers as the Oracle. He notices that David has grabbed Harper’s hand and finds it interesting. No other Oracle and their Paladin had a romantic relationship. With all of the visions, there isn’t time. Harper tells Alexander that the three of them have everything under control. That’s when Alexander drops the bomb that Harper isn’t a full Paladin.

Harper must undergo the Periamos ritual. She doesn’t have a choice in the matter and her test began when she arrived. Should she fail, a new Paladin will come forth, one that has already started her training. All three turn around and see Bee walk into the room. She looks completely unharmed. They rush her and David is stricken when he realizes that he cannot see either girls’ future. Alexander says that it would be an unfair advantage during the Periamos. Harper attempts to argue but Alexander cuts her off. She will have to complete three mental or physical tests by the end of the moon cycle. Either she will live or die at the end. Bee is her replacement should she fail. If Harper is successful, Bee will no longer have her Paladin powers. David accepts Alexander’s offer of help because he feels that they really need it.

Will Harper survive the Periamos? Can David trust Alexander or will Harper’s fears come true? Who is Alexander? What visions does David have of the future? Can Harper and David’s relationship survive?

The trilogy will finish out with a third yet untitled book sometime in the future.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

I'll Meet You There by Heather Demetrios

The graduation/welcome home party for Josh Mitchell doesn’t go as planned for Skylar Evans. The two worked together at the Paradise Hotel before Josh joined the Marines and shipped out to Afghanistan. Skylar briefly dated his younger brother Blake during his deployment. Not much happens in the blink and you might miss it town of Creek View, located just off of California’s Highway 99. In fact, at the end of summer, she will start at San Francisco State and leave Creek View behind. Looking everywhere for Josh to welcome him home, she hears him before she sees him. When Skylar turns around, she is stunned to see his gaunt face and lifeless eyes. It is only when he takes a step towards her for a hug does she notice that Josh has lost his left leg, courtesy of the Taliban. After Josh moves on to a new group of friends, Skylar questions Blake on the situation. Josh made their mother promise not to tell anyone. Leaving the party, Skylar recalls the last words Josh said to her before his deployment. “This is as good as it gets for me.”

The first week that Josh is back home, Skylar only runs into him once. She went to pick up her friend Dylan at the diner after she had finished her shift. While waiting, Skylar sees Josh sitting alone at a table, staring out the window, his food untouched. She  recalls how popular Josh was before joining the Marines. Knowing that it is only proper, Skylar walks over to say hello.The first thing Josh says to her is how good she looks. She jokes that he would hit on Marge, the hotel owner, given the chance. Nope, not going there but he is coming back to work as the handyman until he figures out what to do with his life. While driving Dylan to the nearest Walmart, Skylar finds that she cannot keep her mind off of Josh. Dylan says that she is wonders what he would be like under the sheets.

When Skylar gets home, she is surprised to find their trailer door unlocked. She and her mother are adamant about locking it. Her mother should be working at Taco Bell. Carefully opening the door, she hears her mother coughing from the bedroom. Skylar finds her sitting on the bed and just thinks she is having a bad day. Skylar is floored when her mother tells her that she has lost her job and breaks down. Skylar is so close to leaving Creek View behind and her worst fears have come true. She cannot leave her mother alone.

Skylar’s life soon spins out of control. Her mother begins drinking again and refuses to look for a job. And to Skylar’s horror, her mother starts having a guy over. Working at the hotel, Skylar begins to see Josh every day. She no longer sees the wounded warrior or the carefree boy before he joined the Marines. War has changed Josh. His life now revolves around physical and group therapy at the VA and trying to decide whether to stay on the Marines or take an honorable discharge. The two start to spend more time together and Josh becomes the one bright spot in Skylar’s life while everything else comes crashing down around her. Skylar finds herself falling for Josh, but when he starts running away from close encounters, she wonders if she has read Josh’s signals wrong.

Will Skylar be able to leave Creek View behind? Does she get to go to college? Can she help her mother turn her life around? Is Skylar getting the wrong message from Josh? What horrors and loss did Josh suffer in Afghanistan that haunt him? Can Skylar help Josh move forward?

Visit Heather Demetrios’ website.