Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Cover Reveal: Stained by Cheryl Rainfield

Ack, cannot believe that I forgot to post this yesterday. Things are still very unsettled at the moment form the move. :(

About the author:

I write the books I needed as a teen and couldn't find.
I love to write--and I love to read. Books nurture me, helped me survive the abuse I endured as a child and teen. I write fantasy books and edgy, realistic fiction for teens.
My fantasy books often hold hope that I need, and feel others might need, too, while reflecting on forms of oppression or pain, while my realistic fiction is gritty, intense, and emotional. All of my books have fragments of the abuse I experienced. I write about some of the harsh things teens go through...things that I think shouldn't be hidden. But I also write about healing, hope, and love, and finding courage and strength.

You can hunt Cheryl Rainfield at-
Goodreads | Twitter | Website |
Check out what Cheryl Rainfield has to say about her upcoming release.
Like I did with SCARS and HUNTED, I drew on some of my own experiences of bullying, abuse, and trauma to write STAINED and to give it greater emotional depth. Like Sarah in STAINED, I experienced abduction, imprisonment, periods of forced starvation, mind control, and having my life threatened. And like Sarah, I tried hard to fight against my abuser, keep my own sense of self, and escape. I hope readers will see Sarah's strength and courage, and appreciate her emotional growth as she reclaims herself.

Stained by Cheryl Rainfield, November 19, 2013. Published by Harcourt Children's Books.
In this heart-wrenching and suspenseful teen thriller, sixteen-year-old Sarah Meadows longs for "normal." Born with a port-wine stain covering half her face, all her life she’s been plagued by stares, giggles, bullying, and disgust. But when she’s abducted on the way home from school, Sarah is forced to uncover the courage she never knew she had, become a hero rather than a victim, and learn to look beyond her face to find the beauty and strength she has inside. It’s that—or succumb to a killer.
You can pre-order Cheryl Rainfield's Stained at-
Amazon | Book Depository | Powell's | Books A Million |

Wish List Wednesday

Fury of the Phoenix (Kingdom of Xia, 2) by Cindy Pon, March, 2011. Published by Greenwillow Books.

The Gods have abandoned Ai Ling.
Her mysterious power haunts her day and night, and she leaves home--with just the moon as her guide--overwhelmed by her memories and visions and an unbearable sense of dread. For Ai Ling knows that Chen Yong is vulnerable to corrupt enchantments from the under-world. How can she do nothing when she has the skill and power to fight at his side? A dream has told her where he is, the name of the ship he is traveling on, his destination. So she steals off and stows away on board.
The ocean voyage brings with it brutal danger, haunting revelations, and new friendships, but also the premonition of a very real and terrifying threat. Zhong Ye--the powerful sorcerer whom Ai Ling believed she had vanquished in the Palace of Fragrant Dreams--is trapped in Hell, neither alive nor dead. Can he reach from beyond the grave to reunite with Silver Phoenix and destroy Chen Yong? And destroy whatever chance Ai Ling has at happiness, at love?
In this sequel to the acclaimed novel Silver Phoenix, four lives are woven together and four destinies become one, now and forever.
Why: I really enjoyed reading Silver Phoenix last year and am dying to know what is going to happen to Ai Ling in book two. One of the reasons I loved the first book so much is because Cindy Pon did an incredible job with imagery and setting.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesdays is hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. To participate, simply do the following: Grab your current read Open to a random page Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn't give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Monday, January 28, 2013

ARC Review: Liar & Spy

Liar & Spy by Rebecca Stead, August 7, 2012. 180 pages. Published by Wendy Lamb Books. Source: Won.
When seventh grader Georges (the S is silent) moves into a Brooklyn apartment building, he meets Safer, a twelve-year-old coffee-drinking loner and self-appointed spy. Georges becomes Safer's first spy recruit. His assignment? Tracking the mysterious Mr. X, who lives in the apartment upstairs. But as Safer becomes more demanding, Georges starts to wonder: how far is too far to go for your only friend? 
First Sentence:
There's this totally false map of the human tongue.

Blitz: Fighting to Survive by Rhiannon Frater + Giveaway

Today's post is for Fighting to Survive by Rhiannon Frater, an adult series...with zombies.

About the author:
Rhiannon Frater is the award-winning author of the As the World Dies trilogy (The First Days, Fighting to Survive, Siege,) and the author of three other books: the vampire novels Pretty When She Dies and The Tale of the Vampire Bride and the young-adult zombie novel The Living Dead Boy and the Zombie Hunters. Inspired to independently produce her work from the urging of her fans, she published The First Days in late 2008 and quickly gathered a cult following. She won the Dead Letter Award back-to-back for both The First Days and Fighting to Survive, the former of which the Harrisburg Book Examiner called ‘one of the best zombie books of the decade.’ Rhiannon is currently represented by Hannah Gordon of the Foundry + Literary Media agency. You may contact her by sending an email to

You can haunt Rhiannon Frater at-
Website | Goodreads | FB | Twitter |
Fighting to Survive (As the World Dies, 2) by Rhiannon Frater. Adult Zombie Series - Paperback Release: January 29th 2013 / Tor Books.
It’s time to clear the hotel.
The fort has grown crowded as survivors of the zombie apocalypse have found safety between its walls.  Winter is coming; soon it will be too cold to live in tents and other makeshift shelters.  The leaders of the survivors—Katie, Jenni, Juan, Travis, and Nerit—decide it’s time for an assault on the zombie-occupied hotel that looms over the town square.
A pitched battle in the banquet room is the start of a harrowing, room-by-room struggle from Reception to roof.  As the sun sets, the people of Ashley Oaks gather in the hotel’s rooftop ballroom and gazebo to celebrate their survival.  Gazing out over the beauty of the surrounding Texas countryside, it’s hard to believe that death and danger lurk around every corner.
The fort’s search and rescue teams have attracted unwanted attention from bandits who see the fort as competition for food . . . and as a ready source of women.  The first attacks are minor, but everyone knows there is worse to come.
And beyond the fort’s walls, the zombies shamble, moaning, eyes fastened hungrily upon the living.
You can add Fighting to Survive to your Goodreads shelf.

Or, you can purchase it at:
B&N | Amazon 

The giveaway is for one copy of book 1 and one copy of book 2--the mass market releases. Open to US & Canadian addresses. Ends February 10th, 2013.

Friday, January 25, 2013

All About Middle Grade Interview: Darby Karchut (author of Finn Finnegan)

I am very excited to welcome Darby Karchut, author of Finn Finnegan, to the blog for this week's All About Middle Grade Challenge. Hope y'all will give her a very warm welcome.

About the author:

All her life, the archetypal hero and his journey have enthralled Darby Karchut. A native of New Mexico, Darby grew up in a family that venerated books and she spent her childhood devouring one fantasy novel after another. Fascinated by mythologies from around the world, she attended the University of New Mexico, graduating with a degree in anthropology. After moving to Colorado, she then earned a Master’s in education and became a social studies teacher.
Drawing from her extensive knowledge of world cultures, she blends ancient myths with modern urban life to write stories that relate to young teens today.
Darby is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators and the Pikes Peak Writers Guild. She lives in Colorado Springs, Colorado with her husband, where she still teaches at a local junior high school. She enjoys running, biking, and skiing the Rocky Mountains in all types of weather.
Griffin Rising is her first novel. She is currently working on the next books in the series, Griffin's Fire (April 2012) and Griffin's Storm (December 2012). Her middle grade novel, Finn Finnegan, will be released March 2013 from Spencer Hill Press. The next book in the Finnegan series, Gideon's Spear, will be released from Spencer Hill Press in February 2014.

You can haunt Darby Karchut at-
Goodreads | Website |


1. Could you tell us a little about your book, Finn Finnegan, and what readers can look forward to seeing in the book?

Finn (not bleedin' Finnegan) MacCullen is eager to begin his apprenticeship. He soon discovers the ups and downs of hunting monsters in a suburban neighborhood under the demanding tutelage of the Knight, Gideon Lir. Both master and apprentice are descendents of the Tuatha De Danaan, a magical race of warriors from Ireland. Scattered long ago to the four corners of the world, the De Danaan wage a two thousand year old clandestine battle with their ancient enemy, the Amandán, a breed of goblin-like creatures.

Now with the beasts concentrating their attacks on Finn, he and his master must race to locate the lost Spear of the Tuatha De Danaan, the only weapon that can destroy the Amandán, all the while hiding his true identity from his new friends, Rafe and Savannah, twins whose South African roots may hold a key to Finn's survival.

Armed with a bronze dagger, some ancient Celtic magic, and a hair-trigger temper, Finn is about to show his enemies the true meaning of "fighting Irish."

2. Finn and Gideon, definitely make quite the pairing as master and apprentice in this modern set mythological adventure. What did you enjoy most when it came to creating the relationship between the two of them?

I decided early on that these two were going to have a rough-and-tumble relationship, with lots of head butting and arguing (Finn is a thirteen year old boy, after all). And with both of them being blessed with a generous share of the Irish temper, sparks fly, often with humorous results. But underlying everything is a growing bond of affection and respect and mutual dependence. Sometimes, they are as much father and son as they are master and apprentice.

3. So, what made you want to write a middle grade book based upon Irish mythology with some amazing Celtic warriors?

Middle grade is magic. Pure magic. I teach middle school (students the same age as Finn) and I love watching as my students, especially the boys, take their first steps from childhood to manhood. I wanted to give boys heroes they can believe in: a hero their own age they can measure their growth against, as well as an adult hero they can emulate.

And why Irish mythology? Because the dual nature of the Celts make for some dynamic character development. Finn and Gideon are both warrior bards in the ancient sense of the term. They are hunters and fighters, but they also love to sing and the written word.

4. How much research did you have to do in regards to the Celtic language that you sprinkled throughout the book? Any favorite phrases?

Thank goodness for the Internet! I am constantly looking for translations and pronunciation guides for the various phrases I use. My foreign language is limited to six years of Latin (classical, not medieval), so I’m learning Gaelic right along with the boyo. While I did research for Finn Finnegan, I began a list of phrases I will use in the other books of the series. My favorite phrase in book one is codladh sumh. It means “sleep well.” A nice touch by this blue collar, no-nonsense master to wish his headstrong apprentice a good night.  

5. If you could have any, and I mean any, mythological story in the world be 100% truth, which would you choose? Why?

Well, I hope I don’t offend anyone, but the “mythological story” I would love to be 100% true is the Christian “myth” which is not a myth at all, but True.

6. It's always nice to meet a fellow lover of fantasy books. What three fantasy book would you say have made the biggest impression on you as a reader? Why?

The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien, the Prydain Chronicles by Lloyd Alexander, and The Ranger’s Apprentice series by John Flanagan.

7. The world has fallen to a robot invasion and only one heroine/hero can possibly save the day, who do you choose?

Hmm, that would be a toss up between Aragorn from The Lord of the Rings or Gwydion from the Prydain Chronicles. Or Lassie. Lassie would be cool.

8. Care to tell us about your writing cave?

This question made me grin. Writing cave – I wish! I write on a laptop. It travels with me all over the house, to school, and so on. I write whenever I have a fifteen minute window. I am always writing. Or thinking about writing.

9. Any upcoming projects that you can share with us?

Book two, Gideon’s Spear, is with my editors (hi Trish and Vikki!!) and will be released February 2014. I am wrapping up the first draft of book three, tentatively entitled The Hunting. Book four, The Burnt Bones, is outlined and patiently waiting for me to get going on it.

DK: Thank you so much for letting me visit with you and your followers today. I had a blast answering these questions!

Darby, thank you, for stopping by and answering some questions. Definitely looking forward to next next book in this incredible series.

Y'all can read my review of Finn Finnegan.

Finn Finnegan (The Adventures of Finn MacCullen, 1) by Darby Karchut, March 12, 2013. Published by Spencer Hill Press.
Finn (not bleedin' Finnegan) MacCullen is eager to begin his apprenticeship. He soon discovers the ups and downs of hunting monsters in a suburban neighborhood under the demanding tutelage of the Knight, Gideon Lir. Both master and apprentice are descendents of the Tuatha De Danaan, a magical race of warriors from Ireland. Scattered long ago to the four corners of the world, the De Danaan wage a two thousand year old clandestine battle with their ancient enemy, the Amandán, a breed of goblin-like creatures.
Now with the beasts concentrating their attacks on Finn, he and his master must race to locate the lost Spear of the Tuatha De Danaan, the only weapon that can destroy the Amandán, all the while hiding his true identity from his new friends, Rafe and Savannah, twins whose South African roots may hold a key to Finn's survival. Armed with a bronze dagger, some ancient Celtic magic, and a hair-trigger temper, Finn is about to show his enemies the true meaning of "fighting Irish."
You can read my review of Finn Finnegan

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Wish List Wednesday

Perfect Scoundrels (Heist Society, 3) by Ally Carter, February 5, 2013. Published by Disney Hyperion.
Katarina Bishop and W.W. Hale the fifth were born to lead completely different lives: Kat comes from a long, proud line of loveable criminal masterminds, while Hale is the scion of one of the most seemingly perfect dynasties in the world. If their families have one thing in common, it's that they both know how to stay under the radar while getting--or stealing--whatever they want. No matter the risk, the Bishops can always be counted on, but in Hale's family, all bets are off when money is on the line. When Hale unexpectedly inherits his grandmother's billion dollar corporation, he quickly learns that there's no place for Kat and their old heists in his new role. But Kat won't let him go that easily, especially after she gets tipped off that his grandmother's will might have been altered in an elaborate con to steal the company's fortune. So instead of being the heir--this time, Hale might be the mark. Forced to keep a level head as she and her crew fight for one of their own, Kat comes up with an ambitious and far-reaching plan that only the Bishop family would dare attempt. To pull it off, Kat is prepared to do the impossible, but first, she has to decide if she's willing to save her boyfriend's company if it means losing the boy.
Why: Because its the newest Ally Carter book and I love her writing and this series to pieces. Plus, how could I resist more heists, as, well as more Kat and Hale. 

Trailer Review: Senshi by Cole Gibson


Kill Bill meets Buffy in this supernatural samurai taleRileigh Martin would love to believe that adrenaline gave her the uncanny courage and strength to fend off three muggers. But it doesn't explain her dreams of fifteenth century Japan, the incredible fighting skills she suddenly possesses, or the strange voice giving her battle tips and danger warnings. While worrying that she's going crazy (always a reputation ruiner), Rileigh gets a visit from Kim, a handsome martial arts instructor, who tells Rileigh she's harboring the spirit of a five-hundred-year-old samurai warrior.

Relentlessly attacked by ninjas, Rileigh has no choice but to master the katana--a deadly Japanese sword that's also the key to her past. As the spirit grows stronger and her feelings for Kim intensify, Rileigh is torn between continuing as the girl she's always been and embracing the warrior inside her.

"This action-packed novel has a unique and compelling plot...Fans of Carrie Asai's Samurai Girl series will be particularly interested, but even readers who dislike supernatural story lines will enjoy this tale of modern samurais."
~School Library Journal~

"An action packed page-turner tempered with slow-burning romance."


Is Rileigh’s only hope for salvation to team up with her sworn enemy?

Rileigh Martin just wants to do normal teenage things, like go on romantic dates with Kim, her boyfriend and past life soul mate. Although that seems impossible when she’s the reincarnation of Senshi, a fifteenth century samurai warrior. After a ninja ambush leaves her unable to control her ki powers, Rileigh vows to get them under control before her friends lose more than their eyebrows. But when Kim leaves her for his past life betrothed and the other samurai stop talking to her, Rileigh realizes she doesn’t have any friends left to worry about.

As the ninja attacks increase, Rileigh learns that the reincarnated kunoichi, a powerful female ninja, wants to kill her in order to reclaim her destructive powers. Alone and with increasingly unstable powers, Rileigh’s only offer of help comes from Whitley, her sworn past life enemy. Rileigh knows she doesn’t stand a chance against the kunoichi by herself, but Whitley’s sudden allegiance might be hiding a much deadlier agenda.


Author Cole Gibsen

When Cole Gibsen isn't writing books for young adults, she can be found rocking out with her band, sewing crazy costumes for the fun of it, picking off her nail polish, or drinking milk straight from the jug -- provided no one is looking.

Trailer Reveal

Senshi Book Trailer from ZFilm on Vimeo.

Giveaway Details

ARC of Senshi + Signed Katana
Signed Katana
3 Mystery Books
Open to US, Canada & Mexico
Ends 2/6/13

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Cover Reveal: Kiss of Fire by Rebecca Ethington

Joclyn Despain has a scar. In fact, it is almost like a brand on her skin. She doesn’t know why it appeared on her neck, but she doesn’t want anyone to see it, including her best friend Ryland, who knows everything else about her. The scar is the reason she hides herself behind baggy clothes, and won’t let the idea of kissing Ryland enter her mind, no matter how much she wants to.

The scar is the reason she is being hunted.

If only she knew that she was.

If only she had known that the cursed stone her estranged father sent for her 16th birthday would trigger a change in her. Now, she is being stalked by a tall blonde man, and is miraculously throwing her high school bully ten feet in the air.

Joclyn attempts to find some answers and the courage to follow her heart. When Ryland finds her scar; but he knows what it means, and who will kill her because of it.

Find Rebecca Ethington...

Books Available at Amazon and Barnes and Noble

GIVEAWAY: Paperback copies (US ONLY) of Kiss of Fire and Eyes of Ember, or, if you live outside the US and you win this giveaway, you will automatically win ebook copies. :) 

Good luck! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesdays is hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. To participate, simply do the following: Grab your current read Open to a random page Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn't give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Monday, January 21, 2013

ARC Review: Finn Finnegan

Finn Finnegan (The Adventures of Finn MacCullen, 1) by Darby Karchut, March 12, 2013. 200 pages. Published by Spencer Hill Press. Scource: publisher.

Finn (not bleedin' Finnegan) MacCullen is eager to begin his apprenticeship. He soon discovers the ups and downs of hunting monsters in a suburban neighborhood under the demanding tutelage of the Knight, Gideon Lir. Both master and apprentice are descendents of the Tuatha De Danaan, a magical race of warriors from Ireland. Scattered long ago to the four corners of the world, the De Danaan wage a two thousand year old clandestine battle with their ancient enemy, the Amandán, a breed of goblin-like creatures.

Now with the beasts concentrating their attacks on Finn, he and his master must race to locate the lost Spear of the Tuatha De Danaan, the only weapon that can destroy the Amandán, all the while hiding his true identity from his new friends, Rafe and Savannah, twins whose South African roots may hold a key to Finn's survival. Armed with a bronze dagger, some ancient Celtic magic, and a hair-trigger temper, Finn is about to show his enemies the true meaning of "fighting Irish."

First Sentence:
"Son of a goat!" The boy swore and jumped back.

Hitting the Dusty Trail...Again

Alright, so some of y'all may remember that over the summer I moved. Well thing is I'm hitting the road again as we traverse to the new new location for my dad's new job (post retiring from the USCG). We've only known where/when we were going for a week, so....

While I have scheduled up some posts, you can expect fewer posts and less tweets over the next few days to a couple of weeks while we get everything all set up.

Authors, if you signed up for the All About Middle Grade Challenge, don't fret, I'll get your interview questions out to you as soon as I can. If I haven't emailed you yet, I'll do that as soon as I can, too. Right now, all the interviews for January/February are all scheduled and ready to go, I just need to finish up and send out the March ones.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Blog Tour: Tens List with Bisi Leyton

About the author:

Bisi Leyton was born in East London in 1978. She grew up in London, Nigeria and the States, listening to the stories life and love from aunts, cousins and big sisters.
She lives in London, but has worked around Europe including France, Germany, Ireland, Belgium and the Czech Republic. She has a fondness for reading graphic novels.

You can haunt Bisi Leyton at-
FB | Blog | Goodreads | Twitter |

Tens List

My top ten books

This list is going to be righteous mix of books because I’m really picky about what I read and also can love a book for ages. The books I’ve listed either inspired to me to keep reading or to start writing, so you’re going to find some classics in here, but I hope you’ll surprised and even a little baffled.

Let’s go

Number Ten
Gulliver’s travels – Swift’s novel was a chore to read in high school, but I read it again a few years ago and discovered it was amazing. I found the satire rich and the writing very natural and surprisingly modern.

Number Nine
Matlida – Roald Dahl’s middle grade novel was one of the first books that kick started me into reading again.

Number Eight
Civil War by Mark Millar – I am a lover of graphic novels and this one was good as it dealt with very adult and timely issues. Following on from the Patriot Act, it explored the extent to which freedom could be limited for the ‘greater’ good.  It did cop out at the end as the writer didn’t seem to take a side, but I suppose he wanted to leave it to reader to choose.

Number Seven
First Among Equals by Jeffery Archer. It is not a secret I am a huge Jeffery Archer fan. I liked this book because it gave an insight into what it took to become prime minster of Britain. I do not know what drew me to this book, but once I read it I was hooked on Archer.

Number Six
Kane and Abel / The Prodigal Daughter / Shall We Tell the President by Jeffery Archer. The books were one of the first I read that had a strong female lead who wasn’t super powered.  Instead, she used her intelligence and cunning to get what she needed and she succeeded.

Number Five
A Twist in the Tale by Jeffry Archer. Okay, this will be the last Archer book I promise. In this book of short stories, each tale ended with a twist no one saw coming. Trust me even now you’d be surprised.

Number Four
The Lorax by Dr Seuss (or Dr Seuss in general). He was an amazing writer and I’m surprised at the level of thinking he pitched to young readers. Even as adults I struggle to live up to his moral code.

Number Three
Sweet Valley High Series – I do not think these are the best written novel, but I loved the books growing up because they were pretty much all that were available at my middle school and high school in Nigeria. All cool the girls read them and I managed to read a few I borrowed from friends.
I soon felt the stories were limited with quite a few cultural gaps, so I started writing fan fiction where I felt the series left off.

Number Two
1000 Years of Annoying the French – It was humorous overview of British History. I needed a book like this as I’m a British citizen, but I lived overseas as a teenager and never learned our history, properly.  I’m sure if I had learnt British history, it wouldn’t have been this funny.

Number One
Enid Blyton’s the Far Away Tree . This was the first novel I read. I should read it again. I remember reading this late into the night, laughing at some of weird but very offensive parts of the book.

Wistieria (Wisteria, 1) by Bisi Leyton, August 15, 2012.

Sixteen year old Wisteria Kuti has two options—track the infected around the Isle of Smythe or leave the only known safe haven and face a world infested with flesh eating biters. But even with well-armed trackers, things go wrong and Wisteria ends up alone facing certain death, until she is rescued by the mysterious Bach. Uninfected, Bach is able to survive among the hordes of living dead.
Eighteen year old Bach, from a race known as The Family, has no interest in human affairs. He was sent here to complete his Great Walk and return home as a man—as a Sen Son. The Family regard humans as Dirt People, but Bach is drawn to this Terran girl, whom he has never seen before, but somehow knows.
Hunted by flesh eaters, cannibals, and the mysterious blood thirsty group called Red Phoenix, Wisteria and Bach make their way back to the Isle of Smythe, a community built on secrets and lies.

Friday, January 18, 2013

All About Middle Grade Interview: L.S. Hullinger

I am very excite dot welcome L.S. Hullinger, author of Alibi's Ghosts, The Larger-Than-Life Small World of a Medium's Daughter and Cydni Hazard, Empathic Detective, to the blog. Hope y'all will give her a very warm welcome.

About the author:

Linda S. Hullinger has had short stories, essays, and articles published in literary and commercial magazines as well as newspapers since 1989. Since then she has self-published a paranormal short story collection, Holiday Spirits.
Under the pen name, L.S. Hullinger, she has published two middle grade paranormal mysteries: Alibi's Ghosts, The Larger-Than-Life Small World of a Medium's Daughter, and Cydni Hazard, Empathic Detective.
She currently lives in the United States with her family. (from Amazon)

You can haunt L.S. Hullinger at-
Goodreads | Website |


1.  In ten words, for each, could you tell us about both of your middle grade books, Alibi's Ghosts, The Larger-Than-Life Small World of a Medium's Daughter & Cydni Hazard, Empathic Detective?

Alibi is guided to solve mysteries by the spirit world.
Cydni’s empathic nature leads her to uncover a neighborhood secret.

2.  In Alibi's Ghost, what made you want to write a book about where the MC could communicate with the dead?

After scheduling readings with clients for over thirteen years, and noticing how the spirit world interacted with my family during that time, I thought it would be interesting to write about a MC who could solve mysteries in that manner. I also wanted to help middle graders who are interested in learning about spiritual communication and paranormal experiences to be able to do so in a fun and informative way without being frightened.

Did you always plan on making Alibi's mother a medium? Yes.

3.  Since embarrassing situations seem to happen quite a lot to MG characters, can you give us a hint as to any embarrassing situations both of your MCs may find themselves in?

In Cydni Hazard, Empathic Detective, Cydni stays with her Aunt Ettie while her father is at a computer convention. During that time, Aunt Ettie asks Cydni to do the ‘scarecrow dance’ which is her method of shaking off negative energy that Cydni unknowingly collected while at an antique shop. Unfortunately, the young man, Nick, who Cydni likes, happens to witness the dance, embarrassing Cydni.

In Alibi’s Ghosts, Alibi gets caught by a store owner with a handful of items that appear to be stolen.

4.  Ms Hullinger, both of your books sounds like fascinating mysteries with some interesting characters. Which of the two was the hardest to get down onto 'paper'?

Alibi’s Ghosts was the most difficult. Many different scenes came to me while writing it, but they were never in chronological order. I had to eventually write a series of scenes and then arrange them like a puzzle.


I had already structured most of the plot for Cydni Hazard just through note taking before writing it, so it flowed much more easily.

5.  In both of your books the main characters, Alibi and Cyndi, both have a unique ability, how did you choose what Alibi and Cyndi would be capable of?

I wrote Cydni Hazard first and chose empathy because that is an ability that I am very familiar with, and I wanted to explore the possibilities of my character using it to solve a mystery.  With Alibi’s Ghosts, I discovered, from my own experiences, that information from a medium could become misconstrued and present a different type of mystery to solve.  As you can probably tell, I’m a big fan of mysteries and I always try to incorporate some type of mystery into my novels and short stories.

 If you could go back and change their ability to something new, what new found power would you wish to give them?  I don’t think I could change their abilities or the mysteries would not work out.

6.  Given the chance, which power or ability would you like to claim as your own? How would you use this power, for good or evil?

Actually, I have both abilities. I am an empathic medium, and I just retired last year from scheduling readings and holding seminars for grieving parents since 1999. As much as I enjoyed traveling and helping others connect with their loved ones, eventually it became too draining physically. I now spend my time writing in hopes that I can help others learn how to communicate with their loved ones on their own through my stories. Even though both novels are told through the eyes of a middle grader, each story shows different ways to pay attention to the signs from the spirit world that are designed for any age group.

7.  The world has fallen to a robot invasion and only one heroine/hero can possibly save the day, who do you choose?

Alibi. She would have the spirit world to guide her in saving the day. Since Cydni is empathic and her abilities rely on deciphering her out-of-character emotions, she would not be able to ‘pick up’ anything from the robots in order to overcome the invasion.

8.  Care to tell us about your writing cave (include picture if you want)?

Due to the lack of quiet time I had at home, I wrote most of Cydni Hazard in the parking lot of the library near my house. There is a beautiful pond and wooded area that I could look out at while sitting in my car.  Later, while working on Alibi’s Ghosts, I was able to use my writing room on the second floor of my house that overlooks a pond. My desk is at the window facing outward. The rest of the room is mostly bookcases overfilled with books. I work better and am more creative when I’m able to have a long distance view of things. I cannot work in a room with no outside view.

9.  Any upcoming projects that you can share with us?

Currently, I’m in the process of revising a novel about a walk-in.

Alibi's Ghosts, The Larger-Than-Life Small World of a Medium's Daughter by L.S. Hullinger, June 7, 2012.
Alexandra ‘Alibi’ Vernon is the eleven-year-old daughter of a psychic medium whose behavior is repeatedly influenced by kids from the Other Side. From building sub sandwiches in her sleep to sneaking into a stranger's attic, Alibi has her innocence challenged on a regular basis. Since her mother is fairly new at medium work, she only schedules two readings a week. However, this particular week, she accidentally schedules five readings, five days in a row. During this time, each child from the Other Side has a mysterious clue for Alibi to unravel, and she begins to notice each clue is connected in some way with the other readings. With a bit of ghostly charade playing, lots of trouble dodging, and the help of her deceased relatives: Grandpa Edgar and Cousin Kyle, along with her living but scaredy-cat best friend, Daisy, Alibi is able to solve the mystery and help all five grieving parents simultaneously.  
Cydni Hazard, Empathic Detective by L.S. Hullinger, July 4, 2012.
Twelve-year-old Cydni Hazard wants two things in life: to be able to use her empathic abilities to connect with her deceased mother and to become a professional paranormal detective. In order to get what she wants, she feels she must learn as much as possible from her spiritually gifted Aunt Ettie, all the while keeping her supernatural talents hidden from her skeptical father. But no matter where Cydni goes, the spirit world hunts her down and brings stray cats with mystical messages that she must decipher to keep her life on a somewhat normal keel. That's not easy when her empathic nature leads her into unfamiliar territory and behavior. She never knows where she'll be going, what she'll be doing and who will be influencing her, guiding her to unravel the latest paranormal mystery. So when she spends a week at Aunt Ettie's new house and learns the small town of Blue Star claims to have a haunted pond, Cydni is empathically led to discover the truth.

Blog Tour Review: Provex City + Giveaway

Provex City (The Lorne Family Vault Series, 1) by Michael Pierce, April 14, 2012. 324 pages. Source: CBB's Book Promotions/author.
Fifteen-year-old Oliver Grain begins his school year fighting off bullies, learning about the boy who committed suicide in his room, and trying to understand why his history teacher, Mr. Gordon, has taken such a personal interest in him.
Do you believe in ghosts? Do you believe you can make bullies simply disappear? Do you believe you can walk through walls?
Mr. Gordon tells Oliver: "When you truly believe anything is possible, you will be able to open doors where there were only walls." And one of those doors leads Oliver to Provex City, which puts him in far greater danger than he can possibly fathom.
First Sentence:
Helen leaned against the kitchen counter with a pocket sized wooden box in her hand.
I'm always a little nervous when I start reading self published books. Not because I've read a lot of bad ones, but sometimes they could use a lot more editing and just general cleaning up, but thankfully that was not a big problem with Provex City.

The prologue is what really caught my attention when I started reading Provex City.Why, because the beginning was a little weird and thus had me wanting to delve deeper into the story so that I could see why Oliver's gave her children, and took one herself, a pill to forget all that they knew so they could have a fresh start. It was strange yet fascinating because you had no idea what she/they were trying to forget and how it was going to play into the story line later on in the book.
  While it may have taken a little longer than expected for the twist in the prologue to be explained away, I still really enjoyed the way it tied into the story and that there was this little piece of knowledge to tease you as you read.

It took me some time to warm up to the main character, Oliver. Not because he was a boring character, but because I felt that while he had all these questions regarding his family he did not seem all that pressed to find out the answers...quickly. What I did like about him was that he was skeptical and did not immediately believe all the things his teacher was trying to teach him in their private lessons. I enjoyed the fact that he did not buy into what the teacher was trying to get him to right away because it was a more real reaction then if he had been all for it out the gate.

What I ended up enjoying most about Provex City would have to be the writing-even though the beginning was slow. The reason I liked the author's writing is that I felt that he did a great job on building the two worlds that of ours and Provex City. While Provex City itself reminded slightly of another city in something else I've read before, I really liked that vast contrast between the world that we know and the one that held the answers to all of Oliver's questions regarding his past. It was definitely interesting to see the differences between the two and how it changed things for the characters,

Even though Provex City was a good read I felt that it took a little long to get to the big plot point that was hinted at in the prologue. While the story did take time to take off and get down to business, I really liked the actual story and even the characters...even if they did have a tendency to make poor decisions. What kept me from giving this one a full five pineapples is the mysterious past of Oliver and his family was not revealed till like the last four chapters. I was in a constant state of waiting for things to start to come together and for Oliver to find out what I had already guessed.

Final Verdict: Provex City was a an intriguing read with two well thought out worlds.

Provex City earns 4 out of 5 pineapples.

About the author:
I spent the early years of my life bouncing around the East Coast and moved to Southern California in high school. I graduated from Cal State Fullerton with a bachelor's degree in Management, but continually took creative writing classes. It was the classic struggle between passion and practical.
I stopped writing for a while and focused on building a career through serving people Starbucks coffee. I loved coffee and I still do. It just wasn't my true calling.
Writing beckoned me back to a magical world of possibility, and I could only resist for so long. As Mr. Gordon would say, "Believe anything is possible." In the routine and obligations of everyday life, it's sometimes hard to believe. But lost in a story, I feel absolutely free. And my furthest exploration into that freedom has become my first novel, Provex City, which is Book One in the Lorne Family Vault Series.
You can stay up to date on all things concerning the Provex City.


 Three winners will receive a paperback of Provex City and a $15 Amazon Gift Card (INT)
 Five additional winners will win paperback copies of Provex City. (INT)

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Manga Review: Strobe Edge 2

Strobe Edge 2 by Io Sakisaka, January 1, 2013. 200 pages. Published by Viz Media LLC. Source: Edelweiss/publisher.
What is love, anyway? Ninako Kinoshita’s friends tell her it’s one thing, but Ninako wonders what this mysterious feeling really is. When she meets Ren Ichinose, the handsome, enigmatic guy that all the girls worship, her life takes an unexpected turn. With just a few words and a smile, he changes her world...
Once Ninako realizes that she’s fallen for Ren, she confesses her feelings to him even though she knows he has a girlfriend! Meanwhile, a new semester brings an outgoing guy called Ando into Ninako’s life—is Ando just an outrageous flirt or will he turn out to be Ninako’s savior?

Cover Reveal(s): Justice and Blood & Gold by Rhiannon Paille

Today is y'all's lucky day. Not only do y'all get to see the reveal for the second book in Rhiannon Paille's  The Ferryman and the Flame series, but you get to see the cover for the novella, too.
Rhi was never a normal girl. Her life was an urban fantasy wrapped in a paranormal romance and served with a side of horror. To escape her everyday weirdness she began writing fantasy. She studied at U of Sedona and MIMT, obtaining a PhD in Metaphysical Science and Parapsychology. She's married to a chef/comic book shop owner and has a fondness for architecture. She frequents twitter and facebook, but if you really want to get to know her you should visit her site:

You can haunt Rhiannon Paille at-
Website | Goodreads | FB | Twitter |

About the author:

Justice (The Ferryman and the Flame, 2) by Rhiannon Paille, January 22, 2013.
How far would you go to destroy yourself?
Krishani always knew he would have to go to the Lands of Men, but he never thought it would be like this. Enemies everywhere, an ancestor he can't respect, elders he can't trust, a curse he can't stop and friends he can't help but hate. Desperate to end the pain, he sets out on a quest to find the other Flames and face the enemy that took everything from him. 

You can add Justice to your Goodreads shelf.

Blood & Gold (The Ferryman and the Flame, 2.5) by Rhiannon Paille, January, 2013.
This is JUSTICE from the villain's POV.
The Daed are pawns to one of the most powerful members of the Valtanyana. Crestaos is insane, his hunger for the Flames insatiable. The closer the Daed get to achieving his goal, the more expendable they become.

You can add Blood & Gold to your Goodreads shelf.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Wish List Wednesday

Rump: The True Story of Rumpelstiltskin by Liesl Shurtliff, April 9, 2013. Published by Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers.

In a magical kingdom where your name is your destiny, 12-year-old Rump is the butt of everyone's joke.
Rump has never known his full name—his mother died before she could tell him. So all his life he's been teased and bullied for his half-a-name. But when he finds an old spinning wheel, his luck seems to change. For Rump discovers he can spin straw into gold. Magical gold.
His best friend Red Riding Hood warns him that magic is dangerous—and she's right! That gold is worth its weight in trouble. And with each thread he spins, Rump weaves himself deeper into a curse.
There's only one way to break the spell: Rump must go on a quest to find his true name, along the way defending himself against pixies, trolls, poison apples, and one beautiful but vile-mannered queen. The odds are against him, but with courage and friendship—and a cheeky sense of humor—Rump just might triumph in the end.
An inventive fairytale retelling, perfect for fans of Gail Carson Levine or Shannon Hale.
Why: Because it sounds fantastic, and I love the idea of Rump having to go on a quest to discover who he really is. This just sounds like a fun, new twist on the characters story.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Call to Bloggers

Just wanted to pass this along to y'all. Entangled is looking for bloggers to add to their list. See below for all the info.

Here are the requirements:
Do you have a blog?
Do you love to review books?
Do you want access to books before they release?
If your answers to these questions is a resounding "YES" then you're the right blogger for the job.
We want you! Now's a great time to join The List.
If you want to be a part of The List, here's what you have to do:
1. Add Til Death to your Goodreads TBR pile: 
2. Leave the following in the comments section at (
a. Your Name
b. Your Blog URL
c. Your Goodreads Name
d. Your Email Address

Additional Option: URL to your blog post about this call for bloggers.
Priority will be given to those who help spread the word by creating a post on this call for bloggers on their blog. *smiles*

Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesdays is hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. To participate, simply do the following: Grab your current read Open to a random page Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Cover Reveal: The Forgotten Ones by Laura Howard

The Forgotten Ones
Author: Laura Howard
Genre: NA Paranormal Fantasy Romance
Expected release date: May 15, 2013
Age Group: New Adult
Cover Designer: Stephanie Mooney 

Book Description:

Allison O'Malley just graduated from college. Her life's plan is to get a job and take care of her schizophrenic mother. She doesn't have room for friends or even Ethan, who clearly wants more. 

When Allison's long-lost father shows up, he claims he can bring her mother back from the dark place her mind has sent her. He reveals legends of a race of people long forgotten, the Tuatha de Danaan, along with the truth about why he abandoned her mother.

Share on Facebook and/or Twitter and you could win a $50 Amazon (or B&N) Gift card!

Book Blast: Starflower by Anne Elisabeth Stengl


When a cursed dragon-witch kidnaps the lovely Lady Gleamdren, Eanrin sets boldly forth on a rescue mission...and a race against his rival for Gleamdren's favor. Intent upon his quest, the last thing the immortal Faerie needs is to become mixed up with the troubles of an insignificant mortal.

But when he stumbles upon a maiden trapped in an enchanted sleep, he cannot leave her alone in the dangerous Wood Between. One waking kiss later, Eanrin suddenly finds his story entangled with that of young Starflower. A strange link exists between this mortal girl and the dragon-witch. Will Starflower prove the key to Lady Gleamdren's rescue? Or will the dark power from which she flees destroy both her and her rescuer?

Amazon * Barnes & Noble * Christian Book


The Kiss by the River:

The girl did not stir when Eanrin lifted her into his arms; her sleep was profound indeed. Her head lolled over his arm, and he was obliged to part her thick hair to uncover her face. It was an uncommonly beautiful face for a mortal.
However, this girl’s beauty was different from any he had ever before seen. For one thing, her skin was rich dark brown, and her hair glossy black. For another, she was imperfect. Her teeth, visible between gently parted lips, were a little crooked. Mud stained her skin, making it darker still, and her brow, even in sleep, was puckered with anxiety or fear. Her dreams must be wicked indeed.
Eanrin grimaced at the sight and almost put her down again. After all, a princess with dreams like those probably had a tale of woe to match. She would certainly wake with expectations of a handsome hero to aid her. As far as Eanrin was concerned, a dash of heroism was one thing, but commitment to a cause? Never. Rushing off to the rescue of Lady Gleamdren was different, for he had determined that she must be his wife and the sole inspiration to his life’s work. Besides, he loved her.
This creature meant nothing to him.
But blood oozed from the abrasions on her wrists. And her body, mortal and vulnerable, lay in his arms. Eanrin rolled his eyes heavenward as though to seek some holy aid. Then he braced himself and wiped the mud off her lips with the edge of his cloak. She frowned in her sleep and stirred, but did not wake.
“Nothing for it,” he muttered. Closing his eyes and trying not to smell her any more than he must, he leaned in and kissed her . . .

Author Anne Elisabeth Stengl

Anne Elisabeth Stengl makes her home in Raleigh, North Carolina, where she lives with her husband, Rohan, a passel of cats, and one long-suffering dog. When she's not writing, she enjoys Shakespeare, opera, and tea, and studies piano, painting, and pastry baking. She studied illustration at Grace College and English literature at Campbell University. She is the author of HEARTLESS, VEILED ROSE, MOONBLOOD, and STARFLOWER, with DRAGONWITCH due to release in 2013. HEARTLESS and VEILED ROSE have each been honored with a Christy Award.

Blog Tour Schedule

BookBlast Giveaway
$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash
Ends 1/31/13
Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, January 14, 2013

A Candidate for Murder

A Candidate for Murder by Joan Lowery Nixon, 1991. 224 pages. Published by Laurel Leaf. Source: Bought.
With her father running for governor of Texas  Cary can accept some of the changes in hr life-interviews, no time with her father, tension with her boyfriend. She even knows to expect occasional crank phone calls. But these calls in the night are different and frightening. And Cary is sure someone is following her-stalking her.
     What has Cary unknowingly witnessed that places her in danger? To find out, she digs deeper into the political intrigue surrounding the election. But sometimes digging for the truth can lead to more danger...
First Sentence:
I stepped out onto the darkened country club terrace and shut the heavy carved door behind me, muting the music and the laughter coming from the ballroom.

Cover Reveal: The Dragon Empire by Heather McCorkle

Today, y'all get to see the reveal for Heather McCorkle's upcoming fantasy book, The Dragon Empire.

About the author:
I am an author of fantasy, in all its many sub-genres. Living green, saving endangered species, helping other writers, and supporting fabulous authors are a few of my passions. I am also a volunteer for the IS Foundation which works to make the world a greener place. When I'm not volunteering, writing, or surfing my social networking sites, I can be found on the slopes, the hiking trails, or on horseback. As a native Oregonian, I enjoy the outdoors almost as much as the worlds I create on the pages. No need to travel to the Great Northwest though, you can find me here, on my blog, and Monday night's on Twitter where I co-moderate the #WritersRoad chat.

You can haunt Heather McCorkle at-
Website | Goodreads | FB | Twitter |

The Dragon Empire by Heather McCorkle -- February 2013 / Compass Press

On Yacrana, dragons stand at the top of the evolutionary ladder instead of humans. Such an advanced species is not without its issues though.

There's trouble in the Dragon Empire, the kind that could start a war between dragons and the races of people. Hidden factions of dragons believe they should rule the lesser races, not simply stand aside and allow them to develop as they will. Having lived so long in peace, the Emperors turn a blind eye, many oblivious that such attitudes even exist.

Despite being only an architect class, emerald dragon, Grendar is willing to risk banishment and death to stop that which his rulers refuse to see. The hope of peace lies not within the scaled breast of a dragon however, but within the hands of a group of people. But if the hidden factions have their way, these people won’t live to fulfill such a destiny. With a reluctant seer at his side, Grendar must leave his precious Empire for the outside world to save those that will one day save his kind.

You can add The Dragon Empire to your Goodreads shelf.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Book Feature: A Tale of the Other Kind: A Therian Novel

Today, I am featuring A Tale of the Other Kind: A Therian Novel as part of a blog tour. =)

About the author:
Leandi Cameron is an award-winning journalist and assistant editor for the the Boksburg Advertiser, and has now also added the titles "author" and "publisher" on her plaque with the release of her first novel, A Tale of the Other Kind: A Therian Novel.
Cameron is from Johannesburg, South Africa, (maiden name Rostoll).
At school she wasn't the most popular girl, as she was a victim of bullying, but found comfort in her books, and soon discovered her talent for writing at a tender age.
She, therefore, resorted to spending most of her time writing poems, short stories and songs during her afternoons and evenings.
Cameron confesses that she filled her nights reading every young-adult horror, paranormal, romance and fantasy novel she could get her hands on.

A Tale of the Other Kind (A Therian Novel) by Leandi Cameron.
Kai Emery likes to be indiscernible; however, his infatuation for his classmate, Sienna Fynn, has made his invisibility status all the more impossible to upkeep. His world spirals out of control when he discovers that he is a shapeshifting were-leopard, and finds himself unable to control his newfound anatomy.
An unpredictable vampire enters his life, leading him down a path that soon reveals his destiny, and discloses another world, filled with magic and terrifying darkness. When he finds himself in danger from the god of magic and darkness for disobeying a curse bestowed upon his kind, forbidding him from falling in love with a human, he has to fight for survival, and protect everyone that he loves.
You can haunt Leandi Cameron at-
FB | Blog | Twitter | Website|

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Best Middle Grade Reads of 2012

Over the year, I have had the opportunity to read some incredible middle grade titles, so I thought what better way to commemorate my favorites then with a list. I'm sure y'all know how much I love making lists, especially ones that are for things I love.

In no particular order, I would love to present my:

My Top 10 Middle Grade Reads:

1. Small Medium at Large by Joanne Levy
This one was just so much fun to read, and so well written that my MG list would be incomplete without including it. I also really loved how well  Joanne Levy captured the voice of Lilah.

2. Sleuth or Dare series by Kim Harrington
I had to include the whole series because this is one that you need to read from start to finish because each of the books is a continuation of the previous one. My other reason for including this series is that Kim Harrington did a killer job with the characters and mysteries within each book.

3. Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Chris Healy
One of the reasons I loved this one so much is because Chris Healy took the some of the most popular and well known fairy tales and turned them upside down. It was just so fun and the princes' actually had personality.

4. Nevesink by Barry Wolverton
This was perhaps on the of the funnest and most memorable books that I read last year. I don't usually read books that feature animals as the main characters, but what Barry Wolverton did with this one was create a thrilling read.

5. Liar & Spy by Rebecca Stead (review coming soon)
I loved the emotional depth in this one, and the way that Rebecca Stead was able to capture the the feelings of the character. I also really enjoyed that this one is not what it seems at first.

6. Fourth Stall (series) by Chris Rylander
Chris Rylander's Fourth Stall series has to be the funniest series that I have red in ages. Not only is it funny, but you will love Mac and Vince and the ups and downs of the business.

7. The Cavendish Home for Boys and Girls by Claire Legrand (review coming soon)
This one was creepy, disgusting at points, and one of the most enjoyable books I devoured last year. You must check out her writing.

8. Book of Wonders by Jasmine Richards
Jasmine Richards debut was breathtaking. I loved her characters, writing, and the plot from the very beginning and just cannot wait till the next adventurous book she writes.

9. The Cabinet of Earths by Anne Nesbit
Anne Nesbit's writing had me laughing, at the edge of my seat, and even at times made me tearful because the characters were going through so much.

10. Cold Cereal by Adam Rex
This one was a crazy, fun ride. This was one of those books that made me wonder what rock I'd been living under since I had never read anything by him before.

These are my favorite middle grade reads from last year. What were some of y'all's favorite middle grade reads from the past year? Have you read any of the one son my list?