01.29.13

Troll or Derby by Red Tash

Posted in Review at 12:45 am by Amber

Title: Troll or Derby
Author: Red Tash
Source: Heroines with Heart Blog Tour in exchange for an honest review

In Troll Or Derby, fifteen-year-old Roller Deb is singled out by town bullies for both her skates, and for being different. When her popular homecoming queen of a sister is kidnapped by a scuzzy drug dealer, Deb must flee the trailer park in which she’s grown up, and rescue her. Along the way, Deb becomes enmeshed in the magical realm of trolls and fairies, and the blood-thirsty version of roller derby at which these beings excel. But spending too much time among the fairies comes with a price. Will Deb choose to save her sister, with the aid of a mysterious troll? Or will she be lost to the lures of roller derby, and this magical new realm, forever?

Troll or Derby Book CoverThe story begins with a prophecy and a troll’s wish to thwart it. However, some prophecies are bound to come true, even if it takes over a decade to happen.

Each chapter is told from either Deb’s or Harlow’s (the mysterious troll) point of view. It worked for me. Deb has common sense which she usually uses to her advantage. She’s a little off her game when she realizes the rules are different than what she’s used to. Harlow serves as her guide and companion for most of the book.

The fairies in Troll or Derby are not like the fae I’ve read in other young adult-ish novels. It was refreshing. They are henchmen for the current Troll king, mean, bloodthirsty and sometimes high on faeth. That’s right, the fae have their own version of meth in the fae world. And if they aren’t involved with the king, they’re just looking to stay alive.

Tash’s world feels timeless. She makes classic pop culture references which won’t date the story in another few years but helps you connect with Deb and Harlow. Overall it was solid writing and storytelling.

 

About Red Tash

Red Tash is a journalist-turned-novelist of dark fantasy for readers of all ages. Monsters, SciFi, wizards, trolls, fairies, and roller derby lightly sautéed in a Southern/Midwestern sauce hand-canned from her mama’s recipes await you in her pantry of readerly delights. Y’all come, anytime. Also, visit her at http://redtash.com/.
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01.21.13

Mailbox Monday – January 21st

Posted in Event at 5:07 pm by Amber

Mailbox Monday

A big thank you to Marcia for originating Mailbox Monday. This weekly meme is now on tour with a new host each month. January’s host is Lori of Lori’s Reading Room.

Two books came into the house this week. Troll or Derby by Red Tash for review as part of the Heroines with Heart January tour. Troll or Derby Book Cover

In Troll Or Derby, fifteen-year-old Roller Deb is singled out by town bullies for both her skates, and for being different. When her popular homecoming queen of a sister is kidnapped by a scuzzy drug dealer, Deb must flee the trailer park in which she’s grown up, and rescue her. Along the way, Deb becomes enmeshed in the magical realm of trolls and fairies, and the blood-thirsty version of roller derby at which these beings excel. But spending too much time among the fairies comes with a price. Will Deb choose to save her sister, with the aid of a mysterious troll? Or will she be lost to the lures of roller derby, and this magical new realm, forever?

The other book is Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel so I could participate in the readalong with It’s All About Books and The Bluestocking Society. I can’t recall the last time it was so difficult for me to get my hands on a book. Both nearby libraries had all their copies checked out with long waits. Overdrive’s 6 audio copies were checked out. I went to the bookstore on Sunday and there were no copies with Mantel’s other books. I finally found three copies on a love themed table in the back.

In the ruthless arena of King Henry VIII’s court, only one man dares to gamble his life to win the king’s favor and ascend to the heights of political power

England in the 1520s is a heartbeat from disaster. If the king dies without a male heir, the country could be destroyed by civil war. Henry VIII wants to annul his marriage of twenty years, and marry Anne Boleyn. The pope and most of Europe opposes him. The quest for the king’s freedom destroys his adviser, the brilliant Cardinal Wolsey, and leaves a power vacuum.

Into this impasse steps Thomas Cromwell. Cromwell is a wholly original man, a charmer and a bully, both idealist and opportunist, astute in reading people and a demon of energy: he is also a consummate politician, hardened by his personal losses, implacable in his ambition. But Henry is volatile: one day tender, one day murderous. Cromwell helps him break the opposition, but what will be the price of his triumph?

In inimitable style, Hilary Mantel presents a picture of a half-made society on the cusp of change, where individuals fight or embrace their fate with passion and courage. With a vast array of characters, overflowing with incident, the novel re-creates an era when the personal and political are separated by a hairbreadth, where success brings unlimited power but a single failure means death.

What arrived in your mailbox this week?

01.18.13

Excerpt from Rest for the Wicked by Cate Dean

Posted in Event at 8:39 pm by Amber

Today’s post is part of the January 2013 Heroines with Heart blog tour.

About Rest for the Wicked by Cate Dean

Claire Wiche is an ordinary woman, running her Wicca shop, The Wiche’s Broom, in an ordinary California beach town. But Claire wasn’t always ordinary, and she isn’t quite human. She hides a secret, and a past she thought she had put behind her.

A past that is about to explode into her present.

When it does, and everyone she loves is in danger, Claire must face up to her past – and become what she left behind in order to save them.

About Cate Dean

Cate Dean has been writing since she could hold a pen in her hand and put more than two words together on paper. She grew up losing herself in the wilds of fantasy worlds, and has had some of her own adventures while tromping through the UK, and a few other parts of the world. A lover of all things supernatural, she infuses that love into her stories, giving them a unique edge. When she’s not writing, she loves cooking, scaring herself silly in the local cemeteries, and reading pretty much anything she can get her hands on. Also, visit her at http://catedeanwrites.com/.

Rest for the Wicked by Cate Dean

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01.14.13

Heroines With Heart 2013 Blog Tour

Posted in Event at 3:48 pm by Amber

Sounds very romancy, doesn’t it? I received an invite to join the tour and liked what I saw. Information on it is below:

Heroines With Heart is a massive blog tour that runs throughout 2013, that features books with strong female protagonists. We have authors from several different genres, including young adult, mystery/thriller/suspense, romance, sci-fi/fantasy, and Christian fiction. We are also giving away fun digital prizes and sharing new and noteworthy books throughout the year. Want updates?

A Month of Letters 2013

Posted in Event at 7:56 am by Amber

A Month of Letters 2013

It’s nearly that time again. February is A Month of Letters challenge. All you have to do is mail an item every day the post runs. In the United States that is 23 days. You don’t have to mail a letter or a post card. You can mail a newspaper clipping, a magazine article, or a swatch of fabric. Anything. Hopefully you’ll get something in return.

So far I’ve stocked up on note cards, paper and envelopes. Next week I’ll pick up a bunch of forever stamps and plan out my calendar.

Are you going to do it this year?

Mailbox Monday – January 14th

Posted in Event at 3:02 am by Amber

Mailbox Monday

A big thank you to Marcia for originating Mailbox Monday. This weekly meme is now on tour with a new host each month. January’s host is Lori of Lori’s Reading Room.

I’ve been checking out quite a few books from the library recently or trying to get through my TBR pile. I did receive some LibraryThing Early Reviewer winnings.

The Burning Time by J.G. Faherty. The Stranger has come to open a gateway to the Elder Gods. One country mage with the help of a woman and teenage son will have to defeat him.

Forever Man by Brian W. Matthews. Police Chief Elizabeth “Izzy” Morris enjoys keeping the peace in the small town of Kinsey in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. But when her seventeen-year-old daughter goes missing after a school dance and the mutilated corpse of the girl’s date is discovered in the nearby woods, Izzy’s police skills are stretched to their limits.

What arrived in your mailbox this week?