Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Destined (Trusted #2) by Taylor L. Stimac - Release Day Post, Review, Author Interview and Giveaway!

Destined (Trusted #2) - Taylor L. Stimac
Official Review:

In the wake of Tegan's apparent kidnapping, everyone is eager to get back to normal. Tegan, however, becomes determined to uncover Damien's secrets and reclaim her sanity.

The constant obsession with Damien begins to put a strain on Tegan's newfound love life as Rake begins finding ways to cope with her behavior. A downward spiral has begun that may prove to be irreversible.

Follow the journey as Damien's secrets are revealed and Tegan discovers just what she is destined to become.

Destined: Book 2 in The Trusted Series:

What's your destiny

Author Info:

Taylor L. Stimac is a Young Adult novelist with a passion for storytelling. She graduated from East Central University in Ada, OK with a Master’s degree in Educational Technology. She’s been an English teacher since 2010 but has since found that her passion lies in writing prose rather than teaching it. When she’s not writing, Taylor enjoys painting, listening to music, and crafting. She resides in Arkansas with her husband and daughter.

My Review:

I think I liked Destined better than I liked Trusted. Just overall, there was more depth to the characters and the writing was better and stuff. It had me reading late into the night (oops..? I do this way too often *blush*) and was definitely a page turner...or a kindle/computer it still a page turner? I don't know...

This book picks up right after Trusted left's after the kidnapping and everything is running amuck. Like, seriously, how much weirder can it get? The only person who remembers Damien is Tegan, and she's all alone. You know one of the things I adored in this book? The 'OH FUCK' moments, of which they were many. Those moments when you came to an epiphany before the character and you were like: 'HOLY CRAP EVERYTHING MAKES SENSE NOW!' Those moments...just....*sigh* I don't know if I could've...just...they were just amazing.

The characters built up and brought new ideas to life. This book was slightly more...paranormal...and definitely up there with my faves. But, honestly, TAYLOR IS SUCH A TEASE WITH HER PROLOGUES AND EPILOGUES !!!! If you've read the first book you'll know what I mean...and if you haven't read the first book then I don't know why you're here!

This book did, however, clear up some stuff for me. Like how I feel about Rake and Damien. And although I'm still partway torn, I'm nowhere near as torn as I was at the end of the last book. BUT TAYLOR YOU BETTER HURRY UP WITH THE NEXT BOOK!!!! pleeeaaasssee *pouty face*

Overall, great book that you should definitely read, but go and get Trusted first. I think this is a much better book than Trusted, but let me know what you think!! :D

Author Interview:

Hi Chloe! Thank you so much for chatting with me!

How did you became a published author?

Well, I had always dreamed of writing a book and finally came to a point in life where I thought “what better time to write one than now?”. So, while working part time, I started staying up and writing until the wee hours of the morning. When not writing, I was researching the publishing process. After lots and lots of research, I decided that self-publishing was the right path for me and began refining my manuscript. Once I finally garnered the courage, I hit the “upload” button and here I am today. It was the scariest, most gut-wrenching thing I have ever done, but I couldn't imagine my life now if I hadn't.

Have you always wanted to write? What was the first thing you wrote?Yes, since I was a small child. My mom still has a box full of all of the crazy stories and stuff I came up with. I guess, though, that it was in high school that I really developed my love for writing. I had a really great English teacher that encouraged me to pursue a career in writing. I thought she was crazy at the time, but I'm thinking now that I'm glad I listened to her.  The first thing I can really remember seriously writing and wanting to have it published was when I was five or six. It was an endearing poem about a monkey that escaped from a zoo. Lol

You said after researching the publishing process that you decided to self-publish. What made you go that route?
I just didn't think the traditional route made much sense for me at that point. I had an established career, so I wasn't really looking to go all out with this writing thing. It is my favorite hobby and definitely my passion, but I wasn't into scouring the masses for an agent, hoping they liked my three paragraph pitch enough to represent me, then praying like a mad-woman that someone out there thought that my story was good enough to publish it. The fact is, I liked my story, and I believed it was good enough; I wasn't necessarily looking for anyone to affirm that. (I'm also a bit of a control freak and wanted to be involved in the entire process.) In addition, everything I researched showed that the traditional publishing route moved at a snail's pace. The waiting game is not one that I play well. ;) It made zero sense to me to write a novel (my baby!) and have the ability to share it with the world and then not do it. I literally started toying around with writing a novel in December 2012 and by June, I had written and published Trusted. It was just always a no-brainer for me and the results have far surpassed anything I could have ever imagined!

In one sentence, tell us what The Trusted Series is about.
Wow, that's a tough one, but I'll give it a go. The Trusted Series follows sixteen year old Tegan Summers on a crazy, suspenseful and very realistic journey of first love, life (with paranormal experiences), and finding her place in the world.

What is one thing you wish you could tell people about your books?
Aside from “please read them and leave a review”? :) Probably to just keep an open mind as you read through them; especially with Trusted. I noticed that the reviews were split pretty evenly; some readers really got what I was throwing down and others didn't quite understand the introduction of some characters (mostly Damien). I would just encourage them to be patient and keep reading; there's a whole crazy roller coaster ride in store for Tegan. :)

So, when will the sequel to Trusted be out?
I am actually just finishing up Destined and hope to have it out within the next couple of weeks.

And does it pick up where Trusted left off?
Yes, it does. And, all of the questions you had while reading Trusted are guaranteed to be answered in this book!

How many books will there be total in The Trusted Series?
There are four books total: Trusted, Destined, Broken and Forgiven. I am hoping to have the final two out next year, but I am also working on a few children's books, so I'm not making any promises. ;)

Where did the inspiration for the Trusted series come from??

The story of Tegan and Rake has been in my head for a long time. Just wanting to create a love a story focused around where I grew up was really the driving force. Once I started writing, the rest just sort of fell into place and has continued to evolve.

What are the characters based on? Different parts of you? People around you?

I would say that Tegan and I are similar in a lot of ways. Lol  Just kind of insecure and influenced heavily by those around us. We always have the same innate need to protect those things that are precious to us. Other characters, like Sara, are completely fictional yet kind of represent people that I wish were in my life. My parents definitely influenced Tegan's, though they are not quite as eccentric. ;) And Rake and Damien just sort came along as two broken people kind of searching to be made whole. Tegan sort of has some healing effect on both them that they just can't shake.

What's one song that describes your personality?
Oh, gosh. ONE song? Lol It depends on which day you ask me! Today sort of feels like a Bobby McFerrin "Don't Worry, Be Happy" kind of day as I am nearing completion of my second novel and find myself getting aggravated at every roadblock that gets in my way. Ask me tomorrow though, it'll be vastly different. :)

What's your favourite part about being an author?
I love being able to interact with readers, it is by far the best part! I love hearing how they interpret the story, what frustrated or confused them. With their feedback, I'm not really an author, just another writer.

What's your favourite season and why?
I absolutely love the Fall. There's something about the leaves changing and the crisp air, it just feels perfect. I could sit outside and write all day long on a perfect Fall day.

What's your favourite thing about where you live?
It's funny, but it's actually the thing I used to despise most: the small-town vibe. When I was younger, I wanted so badly to move to a big city with multiple shopping malls and theaters and theme parks. Now that I'm a bit older and have to drive in bigger cities and have a daughter of my own to raise, I couldn't be happier with my small town life. :)


Woohoo, this is my first giveaway! So here goes...let's see if rafflecopter will work for me!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

The Sound Of Shooting Stars by Heather Allen (Blog Tour) - Review and Author Interview

Title: The Sound of Shooting Stars
Author:  Heather Allen
Genre:  Contemporary YA
Publication Date:  11 November 2013
Event organized by:  Into the Night Reviews

Jamie Grey grew up tossed around between foster homes. At an early age he shut the world out, deciding he wouldn’t care. Whatever life had to throw at him, he would look the other way. Now his senior year is about to start and he’s been forced into yet another new home. This will be the last time, he assures himself. When an unexpected curveball comes his way in the form of a certain stubborn seventeen year old girl, Jamie soon finds out that life doesn’t always work out the way you plan it.

Beckett Chase has been entitled her entire life. Living in the plush landscape of Palm Beach, Florida, she’s never wanted for anything. She’s always taken what and who she wants with no remorse. When she sets her sights on Jamie Grey and she’s met with rejection, her descent from the top begins.

With a twist of events causing Jamie and Beckett’s worlds to collide, will they be able to put aside their differences or will fate intervene offering an entirely different option?

My Review:


Like, wow.

If I was speaking right now you'd probably think I was dead because I'm like just blankly staring into space, like wow! This book is...just, wow. Oh, wait, have I told you WOW yet? Okay, let's hope my vocabulary rapidly expands because 'wow' won't get me far in life...

This book is a mix of everything - suspense, mystery, drama, love, hate, feuds, family issues, destiny and everything else. It's also extremely relatable - someone and something for everyone to feel and somehow it just pulls everyone together. It almost felt like I was being pulled into a big, warm hug with every other reader in the world...and,dayum, it felt good!

This book gave me the warm fuzzies, some of the blech ickies, definitely the 'ooh-tell-me-more'-sies, and what would a book be without the page turneries? To be honest, I stayed up until 1am the night before my exams to finish this...oops?

The plot line was engaging, although the twists and turns came out of nowhere. Heather was really nice that way - allowing us to not fret the secrets because there wasn't much hint of them until BAM **spoiler alert**.

The characters had depth, so much depth I'm currently nursing my broken heart surrounding the fact that I'm not friends with them. I'm also mourning the fact that, although I want Jamie Gray, I want him to be with Beckett Chase. WHAT DO I DO???? Jamie, do you have a twin?? *she said hopefully*

In all seriousness, I don't know why you're sitting here reading my review and not reading the book! And if you've already read the book I don't know why you're not re-reading it or posting on your own site to tell all of your friends to read it!!

5 stars - I'm reading this again!!

Author Interview:

Where did the inspiration for The Sound Of Shooting Stars come from?
Stars doesn’t have a neat and pretty story behind my inspiration unfortunately! I’m a teacher by day and I see many kids everyday who go through situations like Jamie’s. I guess we all have something we are striving for, his was a place to call home. And Beckett’s character, I’m from Palm Beach County, Florida, she is close to my heart. I delved into a multitude of changes in high school as most of us do, to find myself.

What are the characters based on? Different parts of you? People around you?
As I said, Beckett is extremely loosely based on me and some of my background. Jamie is just who I would have loved to come and rescue me. J My real mother’s name was Jamie. She died of MS when I was an adult but the last time I saw her, I was nine. In so many ways she was lost. Jamie Grey was lost for a while as well.

What's one song that describes your personality?
This is HARD! J- You Always Make Me Smile- Kyle Andrews
-I always try to look on the bright side of things!

What's your favourite part about being an author?
I love creating new worlds but more than that the characters that live in them. I’m a people person so shaping a character whether after something I already know or something completely different is exciting! My second favorite part is meeting new people. I’ve met so many amazing readers and other authors on my short journey so far.

Have you always wanted to write? What was the first thing you wrote?
No, writing was always something I thought I wasn’t very good at. I started a journal in sixth grade and continued into high school. What I wouldn’t give to have that thing now that I am writing! LOL! I have no idea whatever happened to it. For a long time I thought I was a better artist than writer, um no, definitely not!

What's your favourite season and why?
Summer, I live in Florida so summer is scorching hot. But during the summer I get to spend every day with my kids and doing something in the water. I love the water- pool, ocean, river, any of the above!

What's your favourite thing about where you live?
My favorite thing about Melbourne, Florida is the weather and that it’s not too big and not too small. We do lack great places to shop but those are a short drive away. My kids get to grow up with the same kids but it’s big enough that we don’t runinto the same people all the time. I get cold easily so a regular temperature of 75 in November is good for me! J

Link to Spotify Playlist:  The Sound of Shooting Stars      

Author bio and social networking links:

Heather Allen is the author of The Just Breathe Trilogy, and newly released- The Sound of Shooting Stars. Heather finally realized her dream of becoming an author only recently with her mermaid trilogy. She savors every moment on this new journey and the wonderful friends she has met along the way. She has many more books planned. More ideas pop up than she has time to write about.

Heather currently resides in the scorching hot state of Florida with her husband and three children. She holds degrees in education from The University of Central Florida and Nova Southeastern University. She is a hopeless romantic who loves to read just about anything, coffee and Jelly Belly jellybeans. When she isn’t teaching, writing or reading, Heather can be found at the beach or out on the water boating.



Purchase Links: (ONLY 99c DURING THE BLOG TOUR!!!!!!!!)


Heather is offering an amazing Giveaway in conjunction with the blog tour!  Prizes include ebooks & paperbacks by Tiffany King, Carol Kunz, Rachel Wade, Misty Provencher, Heather Dencker, Heather Allen and Heather Gunter as well as tickets to Indie Girl Con in February 2014 and a gift card.