Feyre, Rhysand, Lucien, oh my! – my thoughts on A COURT OF WINGS AND RUIN


****Spoiler Alert! ****

There may be some spoilers in this review. Please read at your own discretion

I have really mixed feelings on this book, especially since I’ve been waiting on pins and needles since I finished A COURT OF MIST AND FURY. Now THAT book I loved (minus the gratuitous sex scenes).

Don’t get me wrong. I liked this book, but I felt the pacing was off and it was too long. There were some exciting scenes that got me turning the pages, but seeing as it took me about 4 days to read this…

It should have never taken me that long to read this book. ACOMAF was completed in a day and I was left with my mouth open and my heart aching and “No. no no!!” spewing from my lips. I HAD to have the next book. It just couldn’t end that way.

And now that I’ve read ACOWAR…yeah, I could have waited.

I think the book could have used a bit more editing. I felt that some scenes went on far too long and others fizzled before they ever started. I got really annoyed with Rhysand and Feyre. I mean, no one has that perfect of a relationship. There were moments when there should have been angry emotions, where they really should have been totally pissed off with each other, and then it just went poof as if showing true emotion as a couple is a no-no. And let’s not get me into talking about the side characters: Elain, Nesta, Mor. I think Maas underused them. I really wanted to learn more about what happened to Nesta and Elain in the Cauldron, but it was glossed over, with minor mentions here and there. It was so ‘telling’, not ‘showing’, which really irked me. Here was this huge opportunity to share the horrors of what happened to Feyre’s sisters, and it was barely mentioned. And then we learn that Elain and Lucien are connected as mates. (actually, we learn that at the end of ACOMAF, but it’s accented more here.) But Maas never does anything with that. It felt so ho-hum. And then Lucien takes off and he’s gone 1/2 of the way through the book and when we do see him towards the end, it’s brief, glossed over and there is no closure or anything with Elain and him. Does she take off Greyson’s ring? Does she fall for Lucien? Is Lucien really going back to the Spring Court with Tamlin? After everything, he’s just going to leave Elain? He’s mated to her. Up until this part, the ‘mated’ stuff in this series is serious. You can’t just turn it off, and yet, with these two? There is no heat. There’s no trying. This “mated” thing between them is unresolved and bland and monotone. There’s not heat. There’s no try on Lucien’s part. It really irked me. I’d rather have seen Lucien try and Elain shove off his advances. Maybe even use that underdeveloped magic she gained while in the Cauldron to push him away – or bring him closer.

And what’s with Nesta and Cassian? We all know she’s hot for him, but again, it seemed like Maas was too focused on Feyre and Rhysand that she forgot to go all ninja on Nesta and Cassian. Again, an underdeveloped relationship that should have been a case of fireworks going off, but instead, it ended in a dud.

We never do really find out what the creature was under the library. Well, we kind of do, but it’s not scary, at least not what we were lead to believe.

And how does Feyre just become ‘friends’ with all these bad guys. It’s like she just walks in a room and they all will do anything for her. The Attor, the creature in the library, the Bonecarver, they’re just so willing to help her. There is no intensity, no danger. Nothing she has to really work for. I really wanted to see and feel Hybern’s goons coming into the library.  I wanted to see Feyre battle them on her own, but noooo, she was rescued once more, proving she’s not the badass she wants people to think she is.

Even though I was disappointed in this ‘final’ book in the series, it was still a decent read. I also found out at the end that there will be another book coming. I’m not waiting on the edge of my seat.  I hope this new book goes into Lucien’s relationship with Elain, Tamlin and his mother.  I want there to be explorations and resolutions with Nesta, Elain, Cassian and the whole Court of Dreams. I want Tamlin to heal and find peace. I want there to be some sort of ‘forgiveness’ between him and Lucien. I want Lucien and Elain to find their paths to one another. And I want Mor to reveal more of her secret. Yeah, that was another unexplored part that left me hanging.

I give it 4 stars – barely – mainly for the intense scenes that had me turning pages like my fingers were on fire.

This book was bought and given to me as a gift by a friend.  Thank you, TR!!  You’re the best!!

THE TICK TOCK MAN – Release Day Celebration and Giveaway!


I can’t tell you guys how excited I am for this author!!  Such a great Middle-Grade read. Kids are going to eat this one up, and I’m so happy to be a part of The Tick Tock Man’s birthday!! And don’t you just love that cover!!! Gaahh!! so excited!!

 

 

Hello Readers! Welcome to the Release Day Celebration for

The Tick Tock Man by R.M. Clark,

presented by Tantrum Books / Month9Books!

Grab your copy today!

Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post.

 

Happy Book Birthday, R.M. Clark!

 

 

When the clocks in town stop, thirteen-year-old CJ discovers an unusual “clock world” where most of the citizens are clock parts, tasked with keeping the big clocks running. But soon the seemingly peaceful world is divided between warring factions with CJ instructed to find the only person who can help: the elusive Tick Tock Man.

With the aid of Fuzee, a partly-human girl, he battles gear-headed extremists and razor-sharp pendulums in order to restore order before this world of chimes, springs, and clock people dissolves into a massive time warp, taking CJ’s quiet New England town with it.

The Tick Tock Man by R.M. Clark
Publication Date: May 2, 2017
Publisher: Month9Books/Tantrum Books

Google Play | BAM | Chapters | Indies | Amazon | B&N | Kobo | TBD | iBooks

Excerpt 1:

Now it was nine o’clock. I sat up and grabbed the clock with every intention of tossing it against the back wall. What a pleasure it would have been to see it smash into a million pieces. I win!

But, this clock was a birthday present from Uncle Artie. He’d said it was “a special clock for a special kid.” I didn’t like being called “special” because that had a different meaning at school. But it was a cool clock.

Until now. I mean, what kind of noise was that? Certainly not the alarm sound I was used to.

Excerpt 2:

The clock on the radio displayed 4:05. I compared it to my watch, which I had put back on before sitting at the head of the table. The time was frozen at two o’clock. How strange. My watch always worked perfectly. When Uncle Artie gave it to me, he said it was a one-of-a-kind watch that would never need winding. I decided it was best not to tell anyone.

We drove through what we called downtown Hambleton, and only a few people were on the road. It was Thanksgiving, so this was not too surprising. In fact, it was one of the reasons we went for a drive on major holidays. Most people were home, and we usually had the roads to ourselves. Dad and Grandpa liked it that way.

Excerpt 3:

The next thing I felt was a blast of cold air as everything went dark. I found myself floating just above the ground and shrinking by the second. I was pressed against the glass cover of the Hoffhalder. Then, in an instant, I was inside the clock, right next to the gears and chimes and other clock parts. The clock face absorbed mine, and I couldn’t feel my nose or ears. After a few seconds, my vision finally adjusted enough for me to see out into the dining room.

Excerpt 4:

I went to the spare bedroom and grabbed the box for Uncle Artie’s clocks. I replaced them one by one, starting with the crescent moon clock. After the German village cuckoo clock made its way into the box, I noticed something extra strange. All Uncle Artie’s clocks were stuck at two o’clock. How come no one else noticed this? That question troubled me as I put the box of clocks in its resting place. It was as if those clocks had something to say but couldn’t say it.

When I came back down I gave the Hoffhalder another hard look, this time from the other side of the room. As much as I tried to convince myself this was just a clock, I knew that wasn’t the case. It spoke to me, although I couldn’t completely understand it.

Things were going from strange to downright weird.

 

R.M. Clark is a computer scientist for the Dept. of Navy by day and children’s book writer by night. He lives in Massachusetts with his wife and two sons.

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Release Day Celebration: The Sky Throne by Chris Ledbetter | Excerpt | Giveaway


I am so excited that THE SKY THRONE by Chris Ledbetter is available now and that I get to share the news!

If you haven’t yet heard about this wonderful book by Author Chris Ledbetter, be sure to check out all the details below.

This blitz also includes a giveaway for a 1-month subscription to Owl Crate courtesy of Month9Books and Rockstar Book Tours. So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.

Haven’t heard of THE SKY THRONE? Check it out!

Title: THE SKY THRONE

Author: Chris Ledbetter

Pub. Date: April 18, 2017

Publisher: Month9Books

Format: Paperback, eBook

Pages: 292

Find it: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | TBD |iBooks

 

Synopsis:

Duality dwells at every turn, and an adolescent Zeus will learn that all too well when Hyperion attacks his family on Crete.

When the dust settles, his mother is unconscious and his best friend left for dead.

Stacking epic insult upon fatal injury, Zeus discovers the woman who raised him is not his biological mother. But to ensure her safety while she recovers, a heavy-hearted Zeus leaves her behind to seek answers at Mount Olympus Preparatory Academia.

Zeus embarks on a quest to discover who ordered the attack on his home, avenge the death of his friend, and find his birth mother. When some of his new schoolmates vanish, Zeus’s quest is turned upside down, and the only way to make things right is to access the power of The Sky Throne, confront a most dangerous enemy, and take his life back.

On his way to becoming king of the Greek gods, Zeus will learn to seize power, neutralize his enemies, and fall in love.

“Destined to have a sequel or two, young teens will appreciate the story, and teachers will appreciate that it instructs readers about the pantheon of gods.”–Kevin Beach, VOYA Magazine

Exclusive Excerpt

The Oceanids descended upon the campus from their barracks like a wave crashing against the shore. Telesto, the most beautiful sea nymph by several stadia, smiled at me for the first time since I’d been going to the school. Okay, it wasn’t a full smile. The corner of her lip twitched upward as she flipped her wavy, aquamarine hair over her shoulder and glanced past me. But that counts, right?

I backhanded Anytos in the chest. “You saw that. That’s my opening. If I don’t make my move, she’ll be gone to the upper school next year.”

“Pssht, she is beyond the Mediterranean beautiful. Completely unattainable.”

“Did you see that come hither stare she flashed me?”

“Looked more like indigestion.”

“You are as wrong as you are false. Cover my back. I’m moving in.”

I crossed the courtyard in a flash and caught Telesto’s arm as she reached the weather-beaten front door to the main school hall.

“Telesto, you look as if the sun radiates from you.”

She paused and leaned back against the doorframe. “You’re just saying that because I wore my yellow tunic today.”

“You shine with such brilliance; you should wear yellow every day.”

She folded a strand or two of stunning teal hair behind her ear and twirled the ends. “But what happens when I wear my purple tunic?”

“A tunic hasn’t been invented that could dampen your beauty.”

She giggled and turned away from me for a moment. “Zeus, is it?”

I nodded, surprised she even knew my name.

“You’re the one who pulled that massive prank on my mother, Headmaster Tethys, aren’t you?”

Oh, that’s how she knew me. Not invisible after all. I bowed. “I am him. He is me. One and the same.”

“Crazy. She was so mad.” She shook her head, stifling a smile.

“As far as I can tell, language arts must be your favorite subject. Your tongue is spectacularly sharp-witted.”

“Not really. But I am feeling a little inspired right now.”

Several strands of her hair fell to cover half her face. “Are you going to the bonfire at the beach tomorrow night?”

“I wasn’t invite—”

Several of Telesto’s broad-shouldered, dark-haired brothers bumped into me from behind. “Those are uncharted waters, boy. Careful now,” One of them called over his shoulder. Those were the first words they’d ever spoken to me. Telesto rolled her eyes. “Pay them no mind. They’re harmless. You were saying?”

“Those bonfires are an Oceanids and Potamoi thing? It’s kind of a secret club that you have to be born into, right? Being brothers and sisters, children of Headmasters Okeanos and Tethys… young water deities in training… masters of rivers and streams…”

“I guess. But you should come out any way. It’s all night, under the stars. Eating, drinking, stargazing… What’s better than that?”

Gazing into her mesmerizing, iridescent eyes, my mouth fired before I could stop it. “Kissing you under the stars. That’s better.”

“Sprint much? You’re a fast mover.”

“I just go after what I want.”

“Well … ” A pink tint rose on her high cheek bones. “We shall see. But first you have to show up.”

Her lips twitched gain. “I have to go to class. See you tomorrow?” She disappeared inside the school hall.

About Chris: 

Chris Ledbetter grew up in Durham, NC before moving to Charlottesville, VA in 11th grade. After high school, he attended Hampton University where he promptly “walked-on” to the best drum line in the conference without any prior percussion experience. He carried the bass drum for four years, something his back is not very happy about now.

After a change of heart and major, he enrolled in Old Dominion University and earned his degree in Business Administration. He’s worked in various managerial and marketing capacities throughout his life. He taught high school for six years in Culpeper, VA, and also coached football.

He has walked the streets of Los Angeles and New York City, waded in the waters of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, and climbed Diamond Head crater on Hawaii and rang in the New Year in Tokyo, Japan. But he dreams of one day visiting Greece and Italy.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | YouTubeGoodreads

Giveaway Details:

1 winner will receive a 1-month subscription to Owl Crate, US Only.

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Of the Trees by E.M. Fitch


 

I am so excited that OF THE TREES by E.M. Fitch releases today and that I get to share the news! If you haven’t yet heard about this wonderful book by Author E.M. Fitch, be sure to check out all the details below.
 

This blitz also includes a giveaway for a $25 Fandango Gift Card, US Only courtesy of Month9Books. So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.

About The Book:

of-the-trees-coverTitle: OF THE TREES

Author: E.M. Fitch
Pub. Date: February 28, 2017
Publisher: Month9Books
Format: Paperback, eBook
Pages: 345

Find it: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | TBD | iBooks | Kobo | Google Play Books | Indiebound

Cassie and Laney fancy themselves amateur ghost hunters. When a carnival comes to town, Cassie embraces the chance to try something new.

Carnival workers watch the girls with a collective gaze that ignites in Laney a dark and dangerous fascination, leaving Cassie unnerved.

It’s not just their age or the unsettling way they stare. There is something in the shifting of their skin and the way their features seem to change in the shadows.

Cassie can’s shake this sickening feeling that there’s more to the carnival than meets the eye.

When townspeople suddenly start dying and bloody warnings appear around town, Cassie is lured into a nightmare where trees whisper and strange, shape-shifting men haunt the backwoods she once hunted for ghosts with her best friend.

Then Laney goes missing, and only Cassie can get her back. But the creatures of the trees aren’t simply going to hand Laney over to Cassie without getting something in return.

Excerpt:

He didn’t hesitate, didn’t speak. His hands raked up from her hips, settling warmly on her waist, and he brought his lips purposely to hers, pressing her hard back into the tree. She squeaked, surprised and shocked at his directness—and more shocked at her response.
 
She didn’t protest, and he took full advantage of the gasp she emitted as he nipped at her lower lip. The unnatural heat that had been plaguing her flared into life, searing her insides. He wasn’t gentle, and he wasn’t slow; he angled against her, his whole body pressing to hers. His mouth slid open, coaxing hers to do the same, and his tongue slid along her own. She felt muddled, confused. It was delusive, fast, and unexpected. She was frozen. 
 
But he wasn’t. His hands came around her, stroking under her jacket and up her back, his fingers dancing lightly as he drew them down her sides. His kisses were heady, more intoxicating than the beer she had, and her brain shut down. She kissed him back, hard and without thought. He pulled back from her mouth, trailing his lips over her jaw and to her neck, tracing the bounding lines of her arteries with the tip of his tongue. A sigh escaped without her permission, and she felt his lips curl into a lazy smile before he dragged them up to seal over her own again.
 
Her mind was hazy, but through the haze came a burst of noise. A moan, loud and distinct cut through the silence of the forest. She started, stiffening in his arms. He ignored it, his hands tracing up her body and landing on her neck. His fingertips traced intricate patterns on her skin as he angled her head into the kiss. She felt weak, unable to stand on her own, but his body kept her securely pinned to the tree, and she didn’t move.

Someone, someone nearby, whimpered. Cassie’s eyes flew open. She didn’t even remember closing them. Her breath came sharp and fast; she was gasping into the kiss. He broke free again, bending back to the column of her throat, his fingers leaving her neck and trailing slowly and seductively down her front. Her head fell back to the tree, and she was blinking fast. It was unreal. It felt so unreal. He was everywhere, surrounding her. Her mind was clouded and her thoughts scattered. There was nothing, nothing at all but his lips and his body and his warm, warm hands. She shuddered underneath him, and he stooped lower, yanking the edge of her jacket back and trailing his tongue over her exposed collarbone.

About E.M: 

E.M. Fitch is an author who loves scary stories, chocolate, and tall trees. When not dreaming up new ways to torture characters, she is usually corralling her four children or thinking of ways to tire them out so she can get an hour of peace at night. She lives in Connecticut, surrounded by chaos, which she manages (somewhat successfully) with her husband, Marc.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Giveaway Details:
1 winner will receive a $25 Fandango Gift Card, US Only.

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EMBERS IN THE SEA by Jennifer Eaton is finally here!



I am so  excited that EMBERS IN THE SEA by Jennifer M. Eaton releases today and that I get to share the news! If you  haven’t yet heard about this wonderful book by Author Jennifer M. Eaton, be sure to check out all the details below.

This blitz  also includes a giveaway for a Perfectly Posh, Posh To Meet You Set ($20 value), and an Alien Charm Necklace US Only courtesy of Jennifer & Month9Books. So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.

Title: EMBERS IN  THE SEA (Fire in The Woods #3)
Author: Jennifer M. Eaton
Pub. Date: January 31, 2017
Publisher:  Month9Books
Format: Paperback, eBook
Pages: 300
Find it: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | TBD

Alien scientist David has dealt with disappointment his entire life, but failing to breathe life into the planet Mars is his greatest regret. Out of options and in need of a new home for their people, the alien Caretakers rekindle their plan to inhabit Earth. First they will have to eliminate the human race, including Jess, the only human David holds dear.

Humanity has one final chance at survival. David needs to emulate Earth’s precipitation on Mars. But the catalyst to make it rain lies in the fathomless depths of Earth’s ocean.

The clock is ticking down to humanity’s last hours as Jess and David face  a world more alien than either of them can imagine. The sea hides secrets, but  some secrets don’t want to be found.

 
Excerpt:
 
We rattled, cascading and spinning. My sight blurred. My breakfast  threatened a reappearance. I closed my eyes and prayed David and Edgar could  bring us under control. The tiles rumbled beneath my cheek before we collided to a stop.
 
My body left the floor before slamming back down once again.
 
Oww.
 
I blinked until I could focus. David lay across the side of his seat, his  head dangling near the floor.
“David!” I dragged myself from the unforgiving tiles and sat him back in his chair. His head lolled back, his mouth slightly open. “Oh, God. David, please wake up!”
 
Pressing my fingers against the side of his neck and his wrists, I sought  a pulse. I couldn’t find one, but relief flooded me as his chest rose and fell  in a shallow breath. I glanced over each shoulder, and toward the back of the  ship, looking for what, I didn’t know.
 
Why hadn’t the seats come to life and protected us?
I grabbed the edge of David’s chair, pulling him from the seat and into my arms. “David?” I kissed him and ran my fingers along the side of his face. “David, please … ”
 
I would have felt less empty if part of my chest had broken off and  floated away into the abyss. I didn’t care that we’d crash-landed again. I  didn’t care that the marine floor was probably more alien than the green planet  we’d been marooned on. I didn’t care that the pressure of an entire ocean weighed down on us. And I didn’t care that he left me alone for two years.
 
He was here. Now. And hurt. I fisted my hands and pushed with my mind. If  he needed strength, maybe I could send it to him.
 
His lashes fluttered. His eyes opened, but didn’t seem to focus. “Jess?”
 
I gulped back a sob. “Yeah. I’m here.”
 
He tried to sit up, but frowned and relaxed back into my arms. “Are we  okay?”
“I don’t know.”
 
 
About Jennifer: 

 

Jennifer M. Eaton hails from the eastern shore  of the North American Continent on planet Earth. Yes, regrettably, she is human, but please don’t hold that against her. While not traipsing through the galaxy looking for specimens for her space moth collection, she lives with her wonderfully supportive husband and three energetic offspring. (And a poodle who
runs the spaceport when she’s not around.)
During infrequent excursions to her home
planet of Earth, Jennifer enjoys long hikes in the woods, bicycling, swimming, snorkeling, and snuggling up by the fire with a great book; but great adventures are always a short shuttle ride away.
 
Who knows where we’ll end up next?
Giveaway Details:
(1) winner will receive a Perfectly Posh, Posh To Meet You Set ($20 value), US Only.

(1) winner will receive an Alien Charm Necklace, US Only.

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Cover Reveal – Embers in the Sea


OMGosh, it’s finally here!!  The cover to book 3 in the Fire in the Woods series!!

I LOVE this YA series and I normally don’t like alien tales, but this one is fantastic!

Check it out!!  I’m so excited for Jennifer.

A quick note from the author:


Fire in the Woods has been an incredible journey for me. In book one, Jess and David raced through the woods of New Jersey. In book two, they raced through space, and spent some time on an alien planet. For book three, I needed a brand new frontier, and Earth’s vast oceans seemed the perfect setting for a new alien adventure. I really hope everyone enjoys Jess and David’s race through the sea, because the ocean has secrets, and some secrets don’t want to be found.

 

On to the reveal!
 
Title: EMBERS
IN THE SEA (Fire in The Woods #3)
Author: JenniferM. Eaton
Pub. Date: January 31, 2017
Publisher: Month9Books
Format: Paperback, eBook
Pages: 300
Find it: Goodreads
|
Amazon | B&N | TBD
Alien scientist David has dealt with disappointment his entire life, but failing to breathe life into the planet Mars is his greatest regret. Out of options and in need of a new home for their people, the alien Caretakers rekindle their plan to inhabit Earth. First they will have to eliminate the human race, including Jess, the only human David holds dear.
Humanity has one final chance at survival. David needs to emulate Earth’s precipitation on Mars. But the catalyst to make it rain lies in the fathomless depths of Earth’s ocean.

The clock is ticking down to humanity’s last hours as Jess and David face a world more alien than either of them can imagine. The sea hides secrets, but some secrets don’t want to be found.

 

Excerpt

1Homework Sucked.

I tucked back the dark bang that flew in my face, shifted my seating, and balanced Philosophers of the Pre-modern World on my crossed legs.

Squinting in the morning sunshine, I forced my eyes to read the passage from Colton’s Lacon one more time:

“Time is the most undefinable yet paradoxical of things; the past is gone, the future is not come, and the present becomes the past, even while we attempt to define it.”

I closed the textbook and tossed it on the grass. “Why should I even care about what some old cleric guy said two hundred years ago?”

“Because he’s a famous old cleric guy.” Matt plucked the book from the lawn and dusted a few stray grass clippings from the cover.

“I came to college to study photography, not to be confused beyond reason by dead philosophers.”

Matt handed my book back as we stood. “Philosophy is supposed to broaden your mind.”

“Yeah, well, I’m broad enough.” I could sense a witty retort forming on his lips. “Don’t say it.”

He held up his hands. “I wouldn’t think of it.”

A group of people pointed at us from across the courtyard, and my fingers twined around my necklace, pressing the charm into my palm.

Here we go again.

When I first came to Columbia University, this was one of my favorite places to relax. The grass was like a hug from home, despite the New York skyline looming just over the trees. But each semester I had to dodge more and more Jess-watchers. Why they were still interested in me after all this time, I didn’t know.

It had been nearly two years since David left Earth to help his people populate Mars, and there’d been no impromptu spaceship sightings yet. But alien chasers still flocked to Columbia University thinking today might be the lucky day.

“How about we go this way.” Matt tugged me away from the wide-eyed group. Several of them raised camera phones, then looked at the sky.

It was always the same, as if just because Jessica Martinez walked outside, a spaceship would magically pop out of nowhere and whisk her away.

“You know, it wouldn’t hurt you to smile once in a while.” Matt waved at a guy holding a late model Nikon camera with a cheap lens attached to the front. “You always look ticked on the tabloid covers.”

I left the walkway and stomped across the grass. “These aren’t paparazzi. They’re just gawkers, and they’re driving me crazy. I wish they’d just let it go.”

Matt laughed. “Let it go? You’re Jess Martinez: the girl who saved the world from Armageddon. Twice. I think you need to cut people some slack.”

I stopped by the oak trees beside the library and watched a bird hop back and forth from the grass to the cement walkway. “I just want to be normal again. I want people to stop staring at me all the time.”

“Then you better stop wearing those tight jeans because, damn, girl, I’d snap a few pictures too if I thought I could get away with it.”

I smacked his shoulder, like I always did when he complimented me in his own, Matt-like way. It felt like we were back in New Jersey, back when I was “just Jess” and friendships weren’t so much a luxury.

“So, when is your cancer conference over?” I asked.

“It’s a symposium, and I’ll be here for a few more days.”

A few more days. It wasn’t enough. “Thanks for coming to see me. I missed you.”

Red stained his cheeks. “Yeah, I missed you too.” His gaze drifted to the tree. “Bobby says hi, by the way.”

I cringed and tried to hide my sneer. “I can’t believe you guys ended up friends after what he did to you in high school. He’s such a jerk.”

“Yeah, but he’s a connected jerk.”

“You don’t need him, Matt. You’re brilliant.”

He shrugged. “Brilliant only gets you so far. Bobby has the charm and means to get my work noticed.”

“And in return, you get him good grades?”

“I can’t take his exams for him, but yeah, I help with the other stuff.” We walked to the library steps, where he reclined against the marble. “He quit McGuire for you, you know?”

“That doesn’t change anything. He and I are never getting back together.”

“He’s trying to get back in your good graces … change the world so you see him differently.”

I eased down beside him. “Did he ask you to say that?”

Matt’s eyes opened like saucers. “Am I that transparent?”

“I can’t believe he’s pretending to care about cancer research just to impress me. When will he learn to take no for an answer?”

“So, you’re serious? You’re really not into him anymore?”

“Not. At. All. Not if he were the last guy on the planet.”

A smile spread across Matt’s face. “Good. You can do better. He’s a weasel.” He cleared his throat. “Just don’t tell him I said that. He’s still bigger than me.”

I mustered half a grin when three people jumped in front of the steps and tried to pretend they weren’t taking pictures of me.

“Wow,” Matt said. “They really don’t let up, do they?”

“Not too much, no.”

He stood and helped me to my feet. “How about we go inside somewhere? Is there anywhere around here we can catch an early lunch?”

I folded my arms. “Seriously? We’re in New York City. Name your poison.”

His grin made me forget about the roving photographers. “Anywhere quiet, where we can kinda be alone.”

I straightened. “Alone?”

He slipped his cold fingers around mine. “I meant it when I said I missed you.”

Whoa. I slid my hand away. “Weren’t you just rooting for team Bobby?”

“Yeah, well, I figure if the referee has banned Bobby from the game permanently, that kinda makes room for team Matt to swoop in and maybe win one for the eggheads of the world.”

A flash of seventeen-year-old Matt, bruised and bleeding on the sidewalk after Bobby beat him up for taking me to a movie flashed through my mind, before my vision refocused on the brilliant med student Matt had become. I’d saved the world from aliens, but Matt was going to save the world from cancer. He believed it. I believed it. Matt was one of those guys who could do anything.

As long as he could avoid getting beat up again.

And with me at his side, he would get beat up again. Going to college hadn’t changed Bobby that much, even if Bobby was riding on Matt’s gravy train.

Matt just put himself way out on a limb. But did I want to go out on that skinny little branch with him?

A smile burst across my face. Maybe I did. “How about something a little more casual, like ice cream.”

He held up his hands. “Whoa there. I don’t know. Ice cream sparks of commitment. We’ve only known each other for what, eight years? I think you’re moving a little fast for me. I thought I was pushing it with lunch.”

I punched him in the arm.

He punched me back. I loved that. No airs. No games. No attitude. Just Matt.

Maybe, just maybe, I could get my life back. Maybe I could be happy again.

A startled cry echoed through the courtyard.

“What is that?” a man yelled.

Matt grabbed my hand and we followed the throng away from the steps and onto the South Lawn. A huge hole had formed in the clouds, widening into a shimmering circle of crystal blue.

I plucked my camera out of my backpack and joined the amateurs clicking away with their cell phones. I hid my amusement behind the lens of Old Reliable.

These people had no idea what a picture could be, how to focus in just the right place, how to find tone in the simplest of images, and catch the perfect light to evoke the exact mood. I hit the shutter four times as the anomaly widened, expanding past several city blocks. Nature never ceased to astound me.

A few more photography students added their lenses to the crowd. There’d be no deficit of pictures for the papers to choose from, that was for sure.

I snapped seven more shots. The race was on. Click. Who would take the best shot? Click. Who would be the first to get their work into the papers?

Me. That’s who. Click. Click.

The shape shifted and elongated, swirling until it settled over the courtyard and froze as if someone pressed the pause button.

The crowd grew silent. I lowered my camera. WTF?

The air in the middle of the circle formed a nearly transparent, shimmering bubble. A rainbow formed across its surface; the stripes brilliant, clear, and defined. Dozens of breaths hitched as an iridescent flicker blasted across the apparition. The form pinched and molded into a colorful, swirling tube that slowly dropped from the sky.

Oh. Crap.

Matt tightened his grip on my hand as the other spectators stepped away. Half their gazes staring up, the remainder staring at me.

“Friends of yours?” Matt asked.

I shivered. “No. That’s not Erescopian technology.” At least I didn’t think it was. Erescopian ships were liquid metal … shiny opal or silver. “That just looks like … ”

“Water,” Matt whispered.

Water hanging in the sky. Or more like a lake … a huge lake with a giant elevator tube dropping out of it. So. Not. Good.

The cylinder fell in short, billowing waves before settling on the middle of the South Lawn. It was there, but it also wasn’t—like it took a picture of what was on the other side and played it like a video, hiding the tube like a chameleon. Wicked cool—if I wasn’t standing so close to it.

Matt inched back, glanced at me, then returned to my side. If I wasn’t riveted to my little patch of grass, I wonder if he’d have run.

Camera shutters triggered like crazy. Everyone gawked at me, like I was supposed to know what to do.

Yeah, cause Jess Martinez knows all there is to know about spaceships.

A whoosh echoed through the open area, like the Jolly Green Giant had blown out a candle, but without the wind. The people on the other side of the cylinder lit up as if a hundred suns flooded them. They stepped back, shielding their eyes.

My fingers tightened on the strap of my camera. I’d seen that light before, on the tarmac two years ago, as hundreds of Erescopian soldiers left their liquescent spaceships and stepped on Earth for the first time.

A siren blaring from behind the buildings broke my frozen stance. I raised Old Reliable, clicking off shots that probably would amount to nothing, until a human form materialized within the cylinder’s hazy brilliance.

 

Jennifer M.
Eaton hails from the eastern shore of the North American Continent on planet Earth. Yes, regrettably, she is human, but please don’t hold that against her.
While not traipsing through the galaxy looking for specimens for her space moth collection, she lives with her wonderfully supportive husband and three
energetic offspring. (And a poodle who runs the spaceport when she’s not around.)
 
During infrequent excursions to her home planet of Earth, Jennifer enjoys long hikes in the woods, bicycling, swimming, snorkeling, and snuggling up by the fire
with a great book; but great adventures are always a short shuttle ride away.
 
Who knows where we’ll end up next?

 

 
3 winners will receive eBooks of FIRE IN
THE WOODS, ASHES IN THE SKY, & an eGalley of EMBERS IN THE SEA,
International.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Are you an author with a #WordPress website #book #promotion


Please leave your information on the original site’s comments, not in mine, please. 🙂 🙂

How To Ebook

best-free-wordpress-themes-for-writers

I’m compiling a website list of authors with WordPress sites. Please list yours in the comments.

If you’re a Michigan author please let me know also.

Thank you.


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Gotta Have $.99 ebook deals!- #BlackFriday


Guys, peeps, book fiends, book nerds. Yeah. You.  Month9Books and Tantrum book has all their ebooks for $.99 through the end of Black Friday! This includes my book …

IN THE SHADOW OF THE DRAGON KING eBook Cover 2700x1800

Yep, this awesome, YA epic fantasy is up for grabs for $.99!! You can’t beat that price!  It’s also been getting super reviews, so why not give it a whirl?? You can pick up at any of these fine retailers:

    

 

Also up for grabs for $.99 (among many, many more):

 

        

           

Grab a copy or two today!!!  Thank you so much for your support.  I love you guys!!! 🙂

 

Music for your Thanksgiving Day


Here’s an oldie but goodie post from a turkey day already past. 🙂 Enjoy

YA Chit Chat

Turkey day is here everyone!  Time to loosen those belt buckles and prepare to feast.  Smokers and ovens are working overtime today in American households to produce the perfect golden-brown turkey.  Millions of red and gold potatoes will be cooked, smashed and whipped. Sweet potatoes will be casseroled and garnished with melted marshmallows.  Green beans will be infused with cream of mushroom soup and dried onions.  There will be squash, corn, cranberry sauce, gravy, dressing/stuffing, copious amounts of wine and alcohol, pickles, olives, celery sticks, tomatoes, deviled eggs.  And when the times comes, we will all gather around the table and give thanks for all the friends, family, bounties and blessings we have in our lives, including the music that makes this day so joyful.

What?  Thanksgiving Day has its own music?  Yeppers, it does, and the proof is below.  Celebrate and enjoy.  All I ask is that in your…

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Top Seven Just Released #HarryPotter #PopFunkos You Must Have!


I love Pop Funkos. I only have 3 and they are all Harry Potter, but I want more, more, more. I have my eye on Jack Sparrow, Rapunzel from Tangled , and all of the Hunger Game figures. But the ones I want more than anything are the new Harry Potter Funkos that were released in October.

Who wouldn’t want Delores Umbridge sitting on their bookshelf?

or

this awesome version of Bellatrix LeStrange?

Or maybe you’d prefer

Professor McGonagall

Or Mad-Eye Moody

Or the despicable Lucius Malfoy

Maybe Harry Potter with a dragon egg, or Hedwig is more your style.

     

No matter what your choice, Harry Potter fans can’t go wrong with these new Funkos. I know they’re all on my Christmas list. Which one(s) do you like the most? Which will be the first you add to your collection?