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Review – Death Weeps October 30, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in 4.5 stars, Paranormal, Young Adult.
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Title: Death Weeps

Author: Tamara Rose Blodgett

Publisher: Tamara Rose Blodgett

Publication Date: May 18, 2012

ISBN-13: 978-1475200867

Available at: Amazon Kindle

From Goodreads:

Caleb faces possible jail time for using Clyde as a undeadly weapon. When he’s exonerated with probation lasting a year, Caleb has to watch his every action. Tensions run high when after the death of Jade’s only relatives, she must live with an undesirable foster family who are anything but what they seem….

Life gets complicated for everyone when the scientists responsible for the paranormal manifestation threaten a parellel world to Caleb’s own. In a bid to stop the destruction of their world, while saving his own, Caleb must defend two peoples against the long arm of the Graysheets.

Time begins to run against him when he discovers through an unlikely source that his friends have been given a drug that causes progressive insanity. Can he find the antidote in time to save them? To save Jade?

Review:

I’m not sure where to begin this review or what to say. I loved this book so much! If you do read this book, you should read Blodgett’s Savage series because there is crossover. If you happened to read my review of Savage Vengeance or if you read the book, then you know a little bit of what happened. Read my review here. In Death Weeps, we get the story from Caleb’s point of view and more information about the crossover.

What I love about Blodgett’s writing is that in this book it becomes more polished while maintaining its original flavor. There were moments when the book got a little over the top but that’s what makes it great! It’s what I’ve come to expect of these books. It’s like a comic book with a big balloon word that says “pow!” You expect a little over the top punch.

Caleb and the gang have gotten older and their maturity has reflected such a change. It was a job well done. Their growth was seamlessly integrated into the story as there was a lot of action to absorb.

Clyde’s character was also more fully developed. If you haven’t read the novella, Death Inception then do. It gives you a more in depth look into his past and how he became a zombie. I kind of fell a little in love with Clyde when I read Death Inception.

The Graysheets, the evil government agents, are more heinous then ever. I grew to hate them even more. As the book wore on, Caleb’s purpose in life became even more clear and he may be meant for more then simply escaping the clutches of the Graysheets.

If you haven’t picked up this series, what are you waiting for? It’s exciting, it’s fun, it’s romantic. The final book is coming out soon. I’m both looking forward to it and dreading it as I don’t want this series to end.

It’s Monday! What are you reading? (23) October 29, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in Book talk.
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This Monday meme is held by the The Book Journey. Feel free to join in and tell us what you’re reading!

Title: Blood Song

Author: Tamara Rose Blodgett

Available at: Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

Julia has been ripped from the escape she’d planned for herself. When she awakens to discover that her reality has shifted to include a supposed soul-meld with a man she hates, and who hates her… she rebels. Julia doesn’t want to be captive in a gilded cage.

Broken from the horrific events surrounding her friends, Cynthia migrates to the very city that Julia resides, determining to find her as the police follow the bread crumbs she’s left in her wake.

The Feral has come full circle and must begin a new life from the shadow of the old. His placement in the hierarchy of the pack is uncertain when he finds that he has an integral enemy and a pack member to protect.

Can the vestiges of Julia’s former life be restored so she might reunite with her one true love or has that door closed forever because of supernatural circumstances beyond their control?

For some reason I’m not enjoying this series as much as I have the Savage series or the Death series. There are a lot of reasons why and I’ll enumerate them in my review of the book but basically there’s no tie in to the first book so I’m not sure where the book left off. It’s been awhile since I read the first book, I needed a little refresher. All I’ve been able to do is piece together what I can remember from the clues in this current book. The plot is complicated and this hasn’t been easy so I’ve been pretty lost for a lot of the book. That’s one of the main reasons I’m not enjoying the book. You could chalk it up to the failings of myself as a reader, but I like to think that I’m not the only one that has had read many other books since the first came out and has had a memory lapse. I’ll keep plugging away in the hopes that things get better!

Title: The Portal

Author: Alan Zendell

Available at: Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

Harry Middleton is born in an America staggered by a century of decline, a time of medical and technological marvels beyond the reach of most people in a shattered economy. Pessimism and despair are more common than optimism and hope, and a desperate government bets the future on space.  The lunar and Martian colonies have not provided the hoped-for salvation, so despite an angry, disillusioned public, the first star mission will soon be launched.

Harry is a special child, smart, precocious, his only confidante an embittered grandfather.  When the old man dies, Harry is lost, until he meets Lorrie.  At thirteen, they bond, certain they’ll spend their lives together, but a year later, she disappears, and Harry is desolate.

With help from his friend Carlos, Harry begins a quest to find her, but he quickly learns how powerless he is.  Even the police lack the resources to help.  Harry and Carlos can only depend on themselves and each other.  An unlikely duo, Harry is an academic prodigy while Carlos is a stud athlete.  Realizing that school and baseball are their  tickets out of the morass they’re caught in, they inspire each other to greatness in both.

Trying to move on with his life, Harry has a college sweetheart, but as long as Lorrie haunts him, he knows the relationship is doomed.  He gains celebrity and wealth, but the thing Harry wants most, finding and saving Lorrie from whatever fate took her from him remains beyond his reach.  And always, in the background, are the deteriorating state of the country and the coming star missions.

And of course, there’s the Portal.

I plan on reading The Portal next. It’s was submitted to me for for review by the author. I read a sample of the book and I enjoyed it so I’m looking forward to reading the rest of the book.

Title: The Duchess of the Shallow

Author: Neil McGarry and Daniel Ravipinto

Available at: Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

A game is played in the fog-shrouded city of Rodaas, and every citizen, from the nameless of the Shallows to the noblest of the Garden, is a player or a pawn. And no one is as he appears.

Not Minette, brothel-keeper and obsessive collector of secrets. Not Uncle Cornelius, fearsome chief of the gang of brutes and murderers known as the Red. Not the cults of Death, Wisdom, and Illumination, eternally scheming and plotting along the Godswalk.

And certainly not the orphaned bread girl known as Duchess.

Yet armed with nothing more than her wits, her good friend Lysander and a brass mark of dubious origin Duchess will dare to play that game for the most coveted of prizes: initiation into a secret society of thieves, spies and rumormongers who stand supreme in a city where corruption and lies are common coin.

The Grey.

This book is another book submission. It looks really good and I look forward to reading it. I love reading about thieves and assassin guilds.

That’s what I’ll be reading this week! What will you be reading?

It's Monday! What are you reading? (23) October 29, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in Book talk.
Tags: , , , , , ,
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This Monday meme is held by the The Book Journey. Feel free to join in and tell us what you’re reading!

Title: Blood Song

Author: Tamara Rose Blodgett

Available at: Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

Julia has been ripped from the escape she’d planned for herself. When she awakens to discover that her reality has shifted to include a supposed soul-meld with a man she hates, and who hates her… she rebels. Julia doesn’t want to be captive in a gilded cage.

Broken from the horrific events surrounding her friends, Cynthia migrates to the very city that Julia resides, determining to find her as the police follow the bread crumbs she’s left in her wake.

The Feral has come full circle and must begin a new life from the shadow of the old. His placement in the hierarchy of the pack is uncertain when he finds that he has an integral enemy and a pack member to protect.

Can the vestiges of Julia’s former life be restored so she might reunite with her one true love or has that door closed forever because of supernatural circumstances beyond their control?

For some reason I’m not enjoying this series as much as I have the Savage series or the Death series. There are a lot of reasons why and I’ll enumerate them in my review of the book but basically there’s no tie in to the first book so I’m not sure where the book left off. It’s been awhile since I read the first book, I needed a little refresher. All I’ve been able to do is piece together what I can remember from the clues in this current book. The plot is complicated and this hasn’t been easy so I’ve been pretty lost for a lot of the book. That’s one of the main reasons I’m not enjoying the book. You could chalk it up to the failings of myself as a reader, but I like to think that I’m not the only one that has had read many other books since the first came out and has had a memory lapse. I’ll keep plugging away in the hopes that things get better!

Title: The Portal

Author: Alan Zendell

Available at: Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

Harry Middleton is born in an America staggered by a century of decline, a time of medical and technological marvels beyond the reach of most people in a shattered economy. Pessimism and despair are more common than optimism and hope, and a desperate government bets the future on space.  The lunar and Martian colonies have not provided the hoped-for salvation, so despite an angry, disillusioned public, the first star mission will soon be launched.

Harry is a special child, smart, precocious, his only confidante an embittered grandfather.  When the old man dies, Harry is lost, until he meets Lorrie.  At thirteen, they bond, certain they’ll spend their lives together, but a year later, she disappears, and Harry is desolate.

With help from his friend Carlos, Harry begins a quest to find her, but he quickly learns how powerless he is.  Even the police lack the resources to help.  Harry and Carlos can only depend on themselves and each other.  An unlikely duo, Harry is an academic prodigy while Carlos is a stud athlete.  Realizing that school and baseball are their  tickets out of the morass they’re caught in, they inspire each other to greatness in both.

Trying to move on with his life, Harry has a college sweetheart, but as long as Lorrie haunts him, he knows the relationship is doomed.  He gains celebrity and wealth, but the thing Harry wants most, finding and saving Lorrie from whatever fate took her from him remains beyond his reach.  And always, in the background, are the deteriorating state of the country and the coming star missions.

And of course, there’s the Portal.

I plan on reading The Portal next. It’s was submitted to me for for review by the author. I read a sample of the book and I enjoyed it so I’m looking forward to reading the rest of the book.

Title: The Duchess of the Shallow

Author: Neil McGarry and Daniel Ravipinto

Available at: Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

A game is played in the fog-shrouded city of Rodaas, and every citizen, from the nameless of the Shallows to the noblest of the Garden, is a player or a pawn. And no one is as he appears.

Not Minette, brothel-keeper and obsessive collector of secrets. Not Uncle Cornelius, fearsome chief of the gang of brutes and murderers known as the Red. Not the cults of Death, Wisdom, and Illumination, eternally scheming and plotting along the Godswalk.

And certainly not the orphaned bread girl known as Duchess.

Yet armed with nothing more than her wits, her good friend Lysander and a brass mark of dubious origin Duchess will dare to play that game for the most coveted of prizes: initiation into a secret society of thieves, spies and rumormongers who stand supreme in a city where corruption and lies are common coin.

The Grey.

This book is another book submission. It looks really good and I look forward to reading it. I love reading about thieves and assassin guilds.

That’s what I’ll be reading this week! What will you be reading?

Review – Death’s Inception August 21, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in 5 stars, Paranormal Romance.
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Title: Death’s Inception

Author: Tamara Rose Blodgett

Publisher: CreateSpace

Publication Date: June 17, 2012

ISBN-13: 978-1477424087

Available at: Amazon Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

Kyle Ulysses Hart and his team of scientists mapped the human genome in the year 2010. As Brain Impulse Technology came online… so did the long arm of the United States government. A covert, military-driven regime was born with genetic manipulation the key to future widespread control.

When pharmaceutical laboratories, funded by the Graysheets, discover a way to unlock paranormal potential through compulsive inoculation, their exploitative dream is realized.

Clyde and Caleb’s lives are predestined to intertwine as they cross paths, his history becoming Caleb’s future.

A lone teenager named Jeffrey Parker, falls prey when he manifests the rare, Affinity for the Dead.The Graysheets abandon all pretense of stewardship, ripping him from his family for their nefarious purposes.

Can Jeffrey remain who he was destined to be in an environment exclusively built for mass control?

Review:

This prequel to the Death series was enlightening and revealed a lot about Clyde and Jeffrey Parker. I’m a big fan of Tamara and her writing. This novella was no exception to how much I love her work.

When Jeffrey’s life falls apart as his paranormal powers start to awaken, his life falls apart. The Graysheets take control of his life and he’s changed forever. It was particularly tragic seeing how the Graysheets took over Jeffrey’s life.

I was really excited to get a glimpse of Jeffrey as a teenager. He’s exceptionally smart and precocious. He has to become incredibly tough because of all the trauma he’s gone through. He’s also extremely determined. Jeffrey showed a side of himself that we wouldn’t have otherwise seen.

Seeing Clyde when he was alive was surprising and delightful. Clyde was a great character to explore. On one hand you want his story to have a happy ending on the other hand you know it doesn’t end well. It was tough. I still thought his story was sweet.

I thought the transitions from one story to another were smooth. There was never a sense of being jarred out of your senses or of their being a stilted conversation lag. There’s also romance in the story, but I’ll leave you to read it to find out whose romance it is.

Although I wanted to read even more once the book was through, I didn’t get the sense of an incomplete story. I think all good books leave you with the sense of wanting to prolong the experience no matter what, just like this one did.

Review – Death's Inception August 21, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in 5 stars, Paranormal Romance.
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Title: Death’s Inception

Author: Tamara Rose Blodgett

Publisher: CreateSpace

Publication Date: June 17, 2012

ISBN-13: 978-1477424087

Available at: Amazon Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

Kyle Ulysses Hart and his team of scientists mapped the human genome in the year 2010. As Brain Impulse Technology came online… so did the long arm of the United States government. A covert, military-driven regime was born with genetic manipulation the key to future widespread control.

When pharmaceutical laboratories, funded by the Graysheets, discover a way to unlock paranormal potential through compulsive inoculation, their exploitative dream is realized.

Clyde and Caleb’s lives are predestined to intertwine as they cross paths, his history becoming Caleb’s future.

A lone teenager named Jeffrey Parker, falls prey when he manifests the rare, Affinity for the Dead.The Graysheets abandon all pretense of stewardship, ripping him from his family for their nefarious purposes.

Can Jeffrey remain who he was destined to be in an environment exclusively built for mass control?

Review:

This prequel to the Death series was enlightening and revealed a lot about Clyde and Jeffrey Parker. I’m a big fan of Tamara and her writing. This novella was no exception to how much I love her work.

When Jeffrey’s life falls apart as his paranormal powers start to awaken, his life falls apart. The Graysheets take control of his life and he’s changed forever. It was particularly tragic seeing how the Graysheets took over Jeffrey’s life.

I was really excited to get a glimpse of Jeffrey as a teenager. He’s exceptionally smart and precocious. He has to become incredibly tough because of all the trauma he’s gone through. He’s also extremely determined. Jeffrey showed a side of himself that we wouldn’t have otherwise seen.

Seeing Clyde when he was alive was surprising and delightful. Clyde was a great character to explore. On one hand you want his story to have a happy ending on the other hand you know it doesn’t end well. It was tough. I still thought his story was sweet.

I thought the transitions from one story to another were smooth. There was never a sense of being jarred out of your senses or of their being a stilted conversation lag. There’s also romance in the story, but I’ll leave you to read it to find out whose romance it is.

Although I wanted to read even more once the book was through, I didn’t get the sense of an incomplete story. I think all good books leave you with the sense of wanting to prolong the experience no matter what, just like this one did.

Review – Blood Singers August 7, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in 4 stars, Paranormal Romance, Young Adult.
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Title: Blood Singers

Author: Tamara Rose Blodgett

Series: The Blood Series

Publication Date: March 8, 2012

Publisher: Tamara Rose Blodgett

ASIN: B007IVVKWG

Available at: Amazon Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

Twenty-year old Julia Wade, a young woman tragically widowed, is in the middle of a bizarre bid between two mythical species who are vying for the unique properties she offers; her blood. The vampires need her to balance the food load of the human species and give them their coveted “Lightwalkers.” The Were wish to be moonless changers; a Rare One can make that a reality.

Julia wants to belong to herself.

Can she free herself and begin a new life?

Review:

Julia Wade is an average high school student, in love with her high school sweetheart. They do what normal teenagers do. Eventually they get married in Las Vegas then he tragically gets killed and she gets kidnapped by vampires. In the end, different factions end up fighting over her because she’s a “Rare One”.

The book’s premise was unique. The writing was very engaging and while I understood Julia’s grief after the death of her husband I wished she had shown more spine. Still she found her footing and became someone I could like if not admire. Maybe she’ll grow more in future books.

The men in the books are numerous and varied. There’s William the vampire, Joseph the werewolf, then there’s Scott the Blood Singer. They’re each unique and have something to recommend to themselves. My favorite is William but it’s hard to say who the front-runner is.

There was an unexpected twist in the book that once you figured it out, it took a long time to culminate. Other then that this was a great read. There were other unexpected turns that took me by surprise.

I have one problem with the book that really bothered me. I think it was excessive to use Julia’s clenching bladder in the action scenes. I think one scene with a clenching bladder is more then enough. . .

Other then that this is a really good book.  I’m anxiously awaiting September for the release of the next book.

Review – The Savage Vengeance May 3, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in 4 stars, Fantasy.
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The Savage Vengeance

by Tamara Rose Blodgett

The degradation of Queen Clara’s sphere continues without apparent end. She must ask for assistance from the neighboring Kingdom of Kentucky to combat the demise of their way of life. However, the alliance isn’t as strong without the promise of marriage, which in the past stood to unite the spheres.

Tensions run high, the ruination of additional spheres an imminent threat, causing strife and conflict. When Clara is seen as a pawn in a greater scheme and change of leadership, the Travelers interfere in an unforeseen way.

When two different groups of Travelers’ objectives collide, a cataclysmic event ends in a scenario of unprecedented upheaval and resolution. Can Clara and the Band save the sphere and in so doing the people of the future? Will Clara find the peace and love she deserves?

This review may contain some spoilers.

This book was fantastic! I loved every minute of it. I read it in one day that I set aside just for it.

The courtship antics were toned down, much to my relief, leaving room for more adventure. There were less damsels in distress, which really did annoy me. Don’t get me wrong, Clara did find herself in a lot of trouble but she found herself rescued in new and interesting ways.

“Two different groups of Travelers’ objectives collide.” That’s when the book gets really interesting. My mind really boggled at what exactly was going on. I had a hard time grasping exactly what was going on but when I did understand it I loved it! I won’t say what went on for fear of spoiling it too much because that’s what I loved about the book the most.

The introduction of Calia who is a headstrong warrior female is another thing I loved about the book. Blodgett shows, once again, that there can be women in that world that can be both independent and strong.  It’s a nice contrast to the more delicate females more prevalent in the series.

This is by far the best Savage book so far in the series. I eagerly await the next installment which should be out in September.

The Pearl Savage and Savage Blood January 23, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in 4 stars, Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Steampunk.
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The Pearl Savage

Savage Series

by Tamara Rose Blodgett

(also available in paperback)

The Pearl Savage has two cultures. The sphere-dwellers and the clan-dwellers.

A cataclysm separated the two cultures. This restricted the sphere-dwellers in a force field that would shield them from what they believed would be toxic air for 140 years.  The clan-dwellers survived the cataclysm and live outside the spheres in the Outside.

The sphere-world is very steampunk in essence. From the force field that encases their world in a sphere to their machinery, everything runs on steam.  Their culture is very Victorian as well.

Clara is the Princess of the Ohio Sphere. Her mother Queen Ada is a drunken despot bent on marrying her to the sadistic Prince Frederic.

Within the clan-dwellers, there is a group called the Band. They are the protectors of the tribe. They kidnap Clara in the hopes of gaining diplomacy with the sphere-dwellers and ultimately rescue her from the Prince.

We find Clara and other female characters needing to be rescued from dire situations time and time again. I found this exasperating to say the least.

Nonetheless, I found the plot and the concept of the book novel enough to keep me engrossed within the digital pages. Blodgett’s style of writing is easy to keep pace with. Her characters, which may make me want to smack them at times, are still sympathetic and likable. For these reasons I couldn’t put the book down.

4 of 5 stars.

The Savage Blood

Savage Series

by Tamara Rose Blodgett

(also available in paperback)

In the second book of the Savage Series, Clara travels alongside Matthew and Bracus to Cape Cod.

Again, we find the females of the group needing to be rescued time and time again. Again, I grew weary of this theme but I found myself entranced by the overall plot of the series and the book so I read on.

I also grew tired of the number of romantic interests that waxed and waned in Clara’s horizon. I felt it was overdone and contrived.

Yet, I like the easy style of writing Blodgett has. It was easy to pass the time and before I knew it I had finished the book.

She also introduced new elements to the plot that intrigued me. I won’t say what they are as they’d be spoilers. I think spoilers are anathema.

Be warned, the book ends on a terrible cliffhanger, but it does have me looking forward to the next installment. That makes this book a success, despite it’s pitfalls.

4 of 5 stars

Death Screams January 19, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in 4 stars, Paranormal.
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Death Screams

by Tamara Rose Blodgett

(also available on NOOK)

This is the third novel in the Death Series and it’s normallywritten in the first person through the eyes of the protagonist Caleb. This one starts off with Jade’s perspective. The book continues to take sporadic leaps off of Caleb’s narrative into other people’s perspective. I found this a bit dizzying, disconcerting, and bumpy.

Otherwise I thought this book was as much fun as the first two books. It was a fun, frolicking ride with a bunch of teenagers with paranormal powers in a futuristic setting.

There are very bad guys. Despicable to the bone. One of them is preying on Astral Projection students. When they’re in the Realm he attacks them at their most vulnerable.

If that’s not enough, Jade, Caleb’s girlfriend is becoming an emancipated adult and her abusive father is making threatening moves towards her. Carson and Brett, the antagonist jerks from previous years are back to their old tricks. Finally, Parker, the extraordinary government Grey Sheet necromancer keeps showing up at inopportune times with his zombies.

There’s a kick-ass grandpa. He made me wish he was my own.

Caleb is a sympathetic hero even if he’s prone to machismo that tends towards sexism. His intentions are good. If truth be told his girlfriend really does tend to be the helpless sort, which is frustrating to say the least.

More often then not, it does come off as being sweet. So it’s easier to swallow.

It’s a fast-paced book, filled with not only fun adventures but serious mayhem. I’ll admit that Blodgett is one of my favorite easy-to-read, fun-for-an-afternoon-escape Indie writers. I was looking forward to the release of this book for quite awhile and I wasn’t disappointed by it.

4 of  5 stars