Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Reviews of The Pearl Savage and The Savage Blood by Tamara Rose Blodgett

The Pearl Savage (Savage, #1)
The Pearl Savage by Tamara Rose Blodgett
Kindle Edition 

Good Reads Synopsis:
"The Guardians," have saved a fragment of 1890s America in nineteen spheres when a natural disaster threatened to drive humanity to extinction. One hundred forty years later, Clara is a seventeen-year old princess that feels a great obligation to her kingdom that is encased in a steam-engineered, bio-sphere for their survival. Clara's father, King Raymond, passes away when she is only twelve, leaving the Kingdom of Ohio in the sadistic rule of her mother. Queen Ada has promised Clara's hand in marriage to an abusive prince of a neighboring sphere. When it's discovered that there are people outside the sphere that did survive, Clara deliberates on escaping Outside to a future free of abuse and tyranny. Unbeknownst to Clara, the Clan people of the Outside have their own calamity and set of perils. Those two objectives collide in an emotional and tumultuous story of love, duty and survival. 

* I purchased this book. All opinions in this review are mine alone. No compensation has been received for the review.*
My Turn:
I was completely drawn into this book. So much so that I read it all the way through. Even in the dark when our electric went out. I read by candlelight. I was truly blown away by the story. It is so much more than what is in the synopsis. Queen Ada is actually Clara's step mother. When it becomes a question of her life, Clara runs away from the sphere to cross into the Outside. As she is escaping the evil prince catches up to her. Before he can do harm the Outsiders, (whom are referred to as Savages by those in the sphere), enter the sphere intent on kidnapping Clara for their own purposes. The Outsiders "rescue" Clara by kidnapping her. The Outsider's are large, strong men with gills. They need the princess in an attempt to unite with those of the sphere so they can get women to breed with. They are also seeking the rumored "select", women they are told who are special to their race and who will bond with them. Clara, it seems, is the first one of the select they have come across. This makes her more valuable to them. It also means that their plans will be changed as they can no longer negotiate her release. As a select she will have to bond to one of them. But the evil prince is hot on her trail. He has no plans of giving up marrying Clara. As if this is not enough on the Outside there is also the "fragment". They are kind of a rebel band of savages. They also need females to breed with. Clara is being chased by all. She feels the pull to certain members of the Outsiders and has agreed to choose one as a husband. But which one will it be when several want her enough to fight for her? 
During all the conflicts Queen Ada herself decides to seek Clara. When she is killed she whispers to Clara the secret that she is not Clara's natural mother but her step mother. Clara's mother is ...a mermaid!
 So as you can tell there is plenty of action in this book. When I got to the end of it where Clara decides she must find her mother the mermaid and she still has not chosen her husband I nearly cried. Fortunately Book two was already out. So even though it was around 3 am I bought book two.
The Savage Blood (Savage, #2)
The Savage Blood by Tamara Rose Blodgett
Good Reads Synopsis:
Matthew and Bracus of the Band travel alongside eighteen-year old queen, Clara Williamson, as she journeys to the sea to unlock the puzzle of her lineage.
Trouble strikes when the fragment absorbs Prince Frederic and undertake plans that involve Clara and her home sphere in a dangerous scheme of coercion.
It isn't long before Clara discovers the Guardians terrible secret through horrible circumstances she must escape from. 
Can Clara protect herself from her own destiny?

Back to me:
In the Savage Blood we return to the Sphere and find clues to locate Clara's mother and then we are off to find her. I do not want to give away the story so I will just say there is a lot of action going on in this book too. The characters are becoming more fleshed out and we are learning more of Clara and why she is so special. This novel takes place in a future world but maintains its roots in the past. You will understand that when you read the book. Tamara did an amazing job writing the differences in language, (using archaic dialogue  with occasional modern slang - which is explained). I can't imagine the difficulty she had doing that. Kudos to her for managing it so successfully. Tamara writes in a way that you feel a part of the world she paints. You are drawn into it and you forget the world you live in. It is fantasy at it's best. If you like a fast paced, action packed, fantasy you can believe story you will love The Savage Series. You will soon be as hooked on this amazing series as I am. The most awesome thing? You can get THE SAVAGE PEARL  right now for FREE on Amazon for the Kindle. You can't beat that. So hurry over and get the free book and watch yourself be sucked into Tamara's Savage Series.  The Pearl Savage Kindle Link

Tamara Rose Blodgett Books:

Death Whispers (Death, #1) Death Speaks (Death, #2) Death Screams (Death, #3) Death Weeps (Death, #4)
Blood Singers (Blood, #1)

While I wait for Savage Book Three I am reading the Death Series. And I am proud to say Tamara is an ALASKAN AUTHOR! Oh yeah! 

Tamara Rose Blodgett Links:

There are 2 very cool contest on here that ends Christmas Eve so check it out

Comments Always Welcome!

Review of Spin The Plate by Donna Anastasi

Spin the Plate

Spin The Plate by Donna Anastasi
PaperbackSecond Edition - July 2011196 pages
Kindle Edition
Published by Black Rose Writing

"Spin the Plate" is the story of Jo, a woman who has come through a traumatic childhood, not battered and broken, but powerful and enraged. A tattoo artist by day, she roams the streets of Boston at night to forget her past and feed her two passions: rescuing mistreated creatures and inflicting bodily harm on their perpetrators. Unassuming and unafraid, Francis, a man harboring a secret of his own, is the one person Jo can't seem to scare off. Right from the start, he sees clearly the caring soul buried deep within Jo's hard exterior and puts into motion a succession of life-altering happenings.

Winner of 2011 Gold Medal in Women's Fiction, Living Now Book Awards
2011 International Book Award Finalist, Romance and Chick Lit Categories .

*Book was reviewed with no compensation. All opinions are mine.*

I can't say I enjoyed this book because it is disturbing. But I want to. I was engrossed with this book from the start of reading it. At first Jo is someone who you think you will hate. She is tough and angry. She does not present herself to the world in a likable manner. But then as the story goes along and you get to know her, you find that you care for her very much. I think the author did a remarkable job with developing this character and staying true to the complexities of child sexual abuse. The feelings and patterns in a survivor are never clear. When you mix in the abuser as a parental figure it gets muddier. Donna did an exceptional job leading us through the mud. I loved the way she wrote Francis. It is extremely difficult to form trusting relationships after a traumatic childhood. I appreciated the way the author took the time to slowly build their relationship. I think this is an excellent book for anyone who deals with child abuse issues.  Not in a way that the book can be used clinically. I do think it does bring up some of the issues that survivors deal with and perhaps helps to bring an understanding. It will give you something to discuss. I think this book is very well thought out and written. I do not recommend it to those under 18 unless they have an adult reading it with them. It does contain some intense scenes.  I do think this is an awesome book for reading clubs. 
I give this book 5 stars even with the scenes. Normally I do not want to read that. I have a hard time with this issue. However in the sense of this book I think the use was justified.  I believe the author achieved a difficult balance of presenting the abuse and the trauma without sensationalizing it. There is also a Christian theme in it. This is well written and just becomes part of the story without being overbearing. 

For more information on Donna Anastasi please visit http://spintheplate.org/

Comments Always Welcome!

12 Days of Christmas with Phil Truman

12 Days of Christmas Extravaganza is being brought to you by Peggy at Pawing Through Books, Jennifer at Books and Barks, and myself. 

Each day for the next 12 days each of our blogs will feature a different author. There will be guest posts, interviews and giveaways! So be sure to stop at each blog to join in the fun!

A special thank you to all the authors who are participating and those who have donated prizes!


Today's guest is:

Phil Truman

The Question of Santa

“Is Santa real, Gramp?”
The boy’s gramp, White Oxley, drove on quietly for a few seconds, trying to decide what tack to take with this question. It was one of those a child asks, whose answer would become a defining moment in that young life. Most parents preferred to put off answering such questions. White could think of three: Is Santa real? Is the Tooth Fairy real? and What is sex? It was an awesome responsibility. White had to be careful.
They were headed into town, WalMart to be exact. Jakey had spent the night with them, as was his habit on Fridays. The boy’s grandmother needed to do some Christmas shopping, so they’d all piled into the pickup to make a morning of it.
 “Why you asking a question like that?” It was a stall tactic. White looked over at his wife in a silent plea for help. She smiled and winked, but said nothing. She always did this to him, taking delight in letting him dig a big hole before she came to pull him out.
“Sammy Botts told us Santa’s all fake,” Jakey answered. “That grown-ups made him up. That parents are the ones who put presents under the tree on Christmas Eve.”
Jakey was in the first grade, the toughest of all school years: the start of reading and writing, math, homework, and no front teeth. Also, there was usually some know-it-all older kid who broke the news about Santa to the last of the innocents.
“Edie Jean started crying when Sammy said that,” the boy continued. “And started pounding on him, until Miss Halley stopped her.”
“Well now, why’d Edie Jean do that?” White asked, still hoping to divert the subject.
“She said she asked Santa to give her daddy a ride home on Christmas Eve. He’s in the Army fighting bad guys somewhere far off,” Jakey said matter-of-factly.
“Well…” White said. He sighed and looked to his wife again, but she’d turned her head toward the window, studying the passing countryside. White knew why, figured she was thinking about her brother Ben and that empty Christmas now so long ago.
“Is he, Gramp?” the boy implored again.
“What do you think, son,” White asked.
“I think he’s real,” Jakey said, nodding.
“Well, there you go,” his gramp said. “As long as that’s what you believe, then he is. Believin’ is a powerful thing.”
White glanced over at the boy. Jakey looked thoughtful, so White continued.
“Sammy Botts just ain’t got all his facts. Parents do put some of them presents out on Christmas Eve, but that’s only because Santa asks folks to help out. You see, there’s a whole lot more kids nowadays compared to when I was a kid. It’s just more easier for Santa to get it all done that way before Christmas morning.
”So you tell Sammy he’s got it wrong. That if he was to believe Santa’s out there, like you, then by damn, he’d be out there; if he don’t, he won’t.
“White!” his wife said with the admonishing tone she used when he swore.
White went on. “Seems to me, though, life’d be a whole lot more fun if you was to believe in Santa Claus.”
“Yeah,” Jakey said starting to smile.
“One more thing,” White said. “Monday morning I want you to go up to Edie Jean, and tell her this. Tell her it come from your gramp who happens to know Santa personally.
“You tell her that Santa will try his da…his goldurned best to pick up her daddy and bring him home, but that it ain’t entirely up to Santa. You see, a soldier ain’t likely to leave his buddies if they need his help. Could be her daddy won’t be able to make that rendezvous with Santa. But if he don’t, it won’t be because he don’t love his baby girl. No sir, jist the opposite. He loves her so much he’s willing to stay over there and fight those bad guys so’s to keep her safe back home; to make sure she has a happy and peaceful Christmas.
“You tell Edie Jean, if her daddy ain’t home by Christmas, not to worry. He’ll be there shortly.”
“Okay,” the boy said.
White wheeled the pickup into the WalMart parking lot. “You think Santa is still here?” Jakey asked. “‘Cause I want to go see him again.”
“Why, I believe he is,” his gramp answered.
White looked at his wife and smiled. She touched a tissue to her eye and blew him a kiss.

Phil Truman is the author of two novels. You can find out more about them using these links:

Legends of Tsalagee Game

                                 Legends of Tsalagee                           GAME

Phil would also welcome your visit to his personal sites:

To be entered for a chance to win a Kindle version of Game please leave a comment with your favorite holiday tradition. Please be sure to include your email so I can contact you if you win!
When you finished here please stop by and see Jenn at http://www.booksandbarks.com/and Peggy at http://www.pawingthroughbooks.com

And be sure to enter the Rafflecopter Form to be in the big Giveaway!  ENTER HERE

Comments Always Welcome!

Review: Inheriting Murder: A Bobwhite Mountain Cozy Mystery

Inheriting Murder: A Bobwhite Mountain Cozy Mystery by Jamie Rutland Gillespie My rating: 5 of 5 stars ...