Thursday, August 31, 2017

Review: No More Noisy Nights by Holly L. Niner

By Holly L. Niner
Illustrated by Guy Wolek
Picture Book
32 pages
 ages 3 +

When tired Jackson climbs into bed after unpacking all day, he hears… OOOEEEeeeOOOEEEeeeOOO!BOOGETY WOOGETY WOO!Plink! Plunk! Plink! Who is making so much noise and how will Jackson ever get to sleep? Despite some silly, sleepy mistakes, genteel Jackson finds a fun and quiet activity for each of his noisy neighbors. He finally gets a great night’s sleep – and discovers three new friends in the morning.


Simple yet clever--this mole takes on the weirdest neighbors in a delightful way.

Jackson has just moved into his new home and can't wait to get some rest after all of the work he's done, but sleep doesn't come easy. The strangest noises come from above, below and even from his own house. Somehow, he has to find a way to deal with them and get some much needed rest.

Jackson comes across as a more traditional, serious mole. He has a normal mole home with perfect older, bachelor style. So when the strange noises start, it's time for a surprise. The noises come from the most non-traditional creatures and create a lovely contrast, which opens up all sorts of possibilities. The ghost and fantasy beings clash against Jackson, but he handles the entire thing with amazing finesse and cleverness. Without many words, the solutions slide into place and young readers will understand right away what's going on. In other words, this book does not talk down to them.

The illustrations are bright, crisp and bring across a snuggly atmosphere. Jackson's home, as well as Jackson himself, carry earthy colors and are illustrated in a familiar way. When the creatures come in, the surrounding atmosphere doesn't break, but allows their bright boldness to mold in to Jackson's world. There are small details to notice time and again, which keep those pages turning and insure the book will be revisited again and again.

The plot itself is simple, and the text just right for younger listeners to grasp. There's a wonderful balance between the story being told and unspoken actions, which are simply understood. While Jackson's problem might seem serious, there's a lovely dash of silly humor thrown in as well, which insures giggles without going over the top. It's a nice mixture, which kids ages 3 and up are sure to enjoy.

And here they are. . .

The Author - 

Holly L. Niner grew up in Newburgh, New York with her nose in a book and a boogey monster in the basement. she is a speech therapist and the award-winning author of Mr. Worry: A Story about OCD, I Can’t Stop: A Story about Tourette Syndrome, and The Day I Ran Away. Holly lives in Fort Wayne, Indiana with my husband and a lazy, crazy cat. 

The Illustrator - 

Guy Wolek has created art in many forms over his 35-year career - courtroom sketching, character development for animation and film, editorial and portraite work for newspapers and magazine, including as a  regular artists for the Chicago Tribune - and of course children's book illustration. In the past 20 years, Guy has illustrated over 600 projects.

Seraphina's Vengeance by Sheena Hutchinson

Seraphina’s Vengeance
by Sheena Hutchinson
YA Paranormal Romance
Cover Designer: Cover Me, Darling
Hosted by: Lady Amber's PR

SEPTEMBER 18th, 2017!!!

One year ago, Seraphina’s entire world seemed to have dived into a mythical land over night. She’s somehow even gotten used to the madness of it all. But what happens when the craziness stops? Things become quiet… too quiet.

Sera should have known that things weren’t as quiet as they seemed. After one of the best nights of her life, Sera is forced into this treacherous journey to save one of her loved ones.
But following the path of evil begins to take its toll on Sera. As she struggles with her own internal dilemmas, Nate starts to take matters into his own hands. When this unseen world finally begins to affect Sera’s emotions and her relationship, can she hold it together to save her loved ones? Will love conquer all? Or will it turn her evil… forever?

Sheena is a born and raised New Yorker, even her writing can’t hide her hard sarcasm. She claims destiny lead her to writing again. She constantly strives to be a positive role model and write stories that empower and inspire.  
Sheena always roots for the underdog, believes in love at first sight, and that everyone should have their happily ever after. While God is currently writing her love story she continues to put all her time into her writing as she is constantly getting new inspiration.
For more on Sheena and her books visit her website

Buy Links: Seraphina’s Awakening:
Seraphina’s Initiation:
Seraphina’s Vengeance (Pre-Order):

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Review: Pink Lock Picks and Sequined Witch Hats by Carla Rehse

Pink Lock Picks and Sequined Witch Hats

by Carla Rehse

Publication date: July 24th 2017
YA Urban Fantasy

Seventeen-year-old Gracie Mason is homecoming queen, co-captain of the cheerleading squad, and a member of the student council. She’s also a budding burglar. While attempting her inaugural break-in, Gracie blacks out and wakes up far away from the scene. It turns out she accidentally intruded on a male witch’s “circle of power,” and now she’s bonded to him for life. To break the bond, Gracie must delve deeper into a society of witches that involves a secret club, a shadowy council, and all sorts of magical mischief.
Gracie quickly learns that dissolving the bond with Asher, admittedly a very handsome and charming witch, is more complicated than she initially thought. And right when it seems things can’t get any worse, witches start turning up dead. It’s clear that Gracie is out of her depth as her quest to sever the bond magically turns into a murder investigation.

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A snarky, sassy, and cute read with heaps of magical action and a bit of sweet romance too.

Gracie Mason was born with a silver-spoon and has it all. When she accidentally is bonded to a male witch for life, her world turns upside down. But Gracie isn't just anyone and knows how to take on anything with style. That is, until she stumbles over a secret group who is trying to take over the witch king's throne and change the world. 

Gracie Mason is a character packed with personality and will either be one a reader loves or can't stand. She's rich. She's flippant. And she's so over the top that a sequined witch hat in the middle of town hall wouldn't stand out on her. Her dialogue and attitude is so cliche that it hurts, and her love for fashion reminds of a silly, rich-teen-girl drama on TV. But on the same hand, Gracie isn't a person easy to categorize. She has a 'dark' side which is so askew to the snobby princess image that it gives her exactly the twist needed to make her likable and easy to cheer for. And she has heart. She keeps it buried, and it shows in a pure Gracie Mason way...but it's hard not to find her intentions golden.

Boring is not a word which can be used to describe this book. The pacing holds steady, bringing in one unexpected twist after the other. Nothing is as it seems, and it's impossible to predict where everything's going. There's a bit missing on the explanations behind the intrigue and some of the magical aspects, but it's not enough to ruin the fun. And that's what this is, a story with tons of magic, a bit of mystery and quirky humor to make sure the entire thing never runs too deep or serious.

The romance is sweet, not smooth and a little mumble-jumbled at the end. It's not love at first sight, and the chemistry stumbles rather than flows. But, in a way, it works. There's a dib and a dab, lots of uncertainty, sparks which could turn into more, and a lovely sense of possibility and nothing written in stone. In other words, this book might lead into more story to come. Or it might not. 

Summed up, this isn't a read for everyone, but it holds definite character and fun. Readers who love humor with their magic and adventure, and are ready to meet a girl who takes on life with her own style are sure to enjoy this fun read.

And here she is. . .

Although not a native Texan, Carla prides herself on having mastered the correct usage of “y’all” and “bless your heart.”
Carla is owned by a persnickety kitty, who rules the computer keyboard and only allows Carla to write when demands for cat treats are met. 


Cover Reveal: Night of the Hunter by Susan Harris


Check out the FB Live cover reveal below for the fourth book in THE EVER CHACE CHRONICLES by Susan Harris. Fan-favorite Telfie and YouTube channel star Melanie Muses celebrates NIGHT OF THE HUNTER's cover reveal with her fans in style! Enjoy the video cover reveal and then be sure to visit Melanies Muses on Telfie to check-in and get your official NIGHT OF THE HUNTER sticker here:
If you can't see the above video (sometimes not viewable in email format), watch it here.


PRE-ORDER ON AMAZON / Available for pre-order on all other retailers Friday!
Night of the Hunter by Susan Harris (The Ever Chace Chronicles, #4) Published by: Crimson Tree Publishing Publication date: November 13, 2017 Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance
"He shattered my wings, but forgot I had claws." ~Caitlyn Hardi (Night of the Hunter)
Caitlyn Hardi is on a mission…a suicide mission. Driven by the pain of the past, she sets out to confront the monster deep in the Catacombs of Paris—the one who took everything from her. Caitlyn doesn't care if she survives Paris. If dying means keeping everyone she loves safe—especially Donnie—then Caitlyn can accept that…as long as she can take her maker to Hell with her.


And here she is. . .

Susan Harris is a writer from Cork in Ireland. An avid reader, she quickly grew to love books in the supernatural/fantasy and Dystopian genre. She writes books for young adults and adults alike. When she is not writing or reading, she loves music, oriental cultures, tattoos, creepy snow globes, DC shoes, stationary, anything Disney, Marvel movies, psychology and far too many TV shows. If she wasn't a writer, she would love to be a FBI profiler or a PA for Dave Grohl or Jared Leto.
Website / Goodreads / Facebook
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Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Review: Cap'n Rex & His Clever Crew by Henry L. Herz

by Henry L. Herz
Illustrated by Benjamin Schipper
Sterling Children Publishers
Picture Book 
ages 3 and up
32 pages

Shiver me timbers! It's the DINOSAUR PIRATES!

Meet Captain Rex and his band of buccaneers. These dinosaur pirates sail the seven seas in search of buried treasure, but whenever they hit an obstacle—like a giant shark or pea-soup fog—the crew members are quick to say they can’t overcome. To this, Captain Rex just glares with teeth bared and says, “CAN’T YE?” And, somehow, the crew always comes up with a clever solution.
A delightful story about using one’s creativity and individual strengths to solve problems. It will encourage kids everywhere to think and say, “I can!”


Dinosaurs set sail in a cute and quirky pirate adventure.

These dinosaurs are serious pirates, and they are ready to head into adventure. Dangers mount as they embark to find the buried treasure, but no matter how hard things get, these pirates are determined to make it through.

Dinosaurs meets pirates--a combination which is sure to make many young boys' hearts pound faster and their imaginations take flight. This isn't a serious book, but sets out on pure adventure and fun. The captain and his crew are as salty as pirates should be but still pack a ton of humor and silly fun. Blunders and troubles mark every step of their journey, and it's fun to see what happens to them on the next page.This is not an informative book in the sense that learning comes first. rather, this is a quirky adventure with a bit of pirating fun and a few things which can be learned along the way - the kind kids can take out and use to pretend they are pirates too.

The text is kept at a minimum and comes bright and bold when the situation demands it. Fun, pirate words and phrases are peppered in between the excitement and silliness, and just in case some of these terms aren't familiar, a glossary with definitions is hoisted on the last pages. The illustrations are simple and bring across the atmosphere well. Each hilarious event comes to life, insuring giggles and snorts. This is a lovely adventure, which sails off into goofiness with a crew one will either love or simply find odd. But it's a combination which is hard not to smile at and enjoy.

And here they are. . .

The author. . .

Henry Herz has an engineering BS from Cornell, an engineering MS from George Washington University, and an MA from Georgetown University, none of which helps him write children's books. Nevertheless, his love of fantasy and science fiction inspired him to write the picture books Monster Goose Nursery Rhymes, When You Give an Imp a Penny, Mable and the Queen of Dreams and Little Red Cuttlefish. He lives in San Diego, CA with his wife and two coauthor sons, and enjoys eating Boston Creme Pie.  You can find out more about him and his works at

Benjamin Schipper has created illustrations for Highlights for Kids, Knopf, Penguin Random House, Amplify, Chick-Fil-A, and Children's Theatre of Charlotte. He lives in Greenville, SC 
with his wife Karen and their little black dog Willow. 

Review: Amazing Animal Friendships by Pavla Hanácková


Odd Couples in Nature
by Pavla Hanácková
Illustrated by Linh Dao
Sterling Children's Books
Informational Picture Book
36 pages
ages 5 to 9

Discover some of nature's most unikely--but valuable--friendships!

Sometimes two are better than one--that's a matter of fact, even when the pairing seems very odd! From sharks and cleaner fish, to zebras and birds, to plants and their pollinators, strange friendships in nature exist everywhere.

With bite-sized text and quirky illustrations, this fascinating book introduces children to the weird and wonderful symbiotic relationships between animal species.


Symbiotic relationships in the animal kingdom are simply fun to learn about in this quirky yet informational book.

There's a whole lot more to animals than meets the eye, especially when it comes to their relationships with other species. Big or small, animals help each other in the most amazing ways. Zebras and birds, hippos and fish, bugs and plants. . .the cooperation knows no bounds.

This book introduces young readers to the world of symbiotic relationships. Since many kids won't even know what that means, the concept is presented in a clear and easy style on the first few pages. After that, each two-page spread is devoted to a certain type of symbiotic relationship. From ants and aphids to shrimps and fish to hippos and their friends, this book covers a vast array of relationships found in nature, and it does this with pizzazz.

Each category is introduced with a quick title and followed by a short paragraph, which explains the type of help the presented creatures need and give. The rest of the page is speckled with small paragraphs, each describing a certain symbiotic relationship and the benefits it provides. These are accompanied by illustrations, which display the relationship clearly while still packing in a wonderful dose of quirky humor. To make sure the whole thing stays ordered, little arrows point to the accompanying illustration at the end of each square of text.  It's clear. It's informative. And it doesn't forget the silly fun. As an extra twist, several not so desirable relationships are pointed at as well.

The text is a little advanced for the youngest readers but kids ages five and up should feel fairly comfortable. It isn't a book to be read in one sitting but works great to flip through in spurts as interest allows. At the end of the book, a short glossary stands ready to help out with those more difficult words and an index provides a quick way to find information, which a young reader is searching for something specific. 

All in all, this is a fun book with tons of great information. There are some well known animal pairings as well as some unfamiliar ones. And it's something kids will gladly come back to time and again.

And here they are. . .

Pavla Hanackova is a writer who specializes in children’s nonfiction.

Linh Dao is a freelance illustrator and animator.

Monday, August 28, 2017

Review: Forest World by Margarita Engle

by Margarita Engle
Atheneum Books for Young Readers
Middle Grade Fiction
ages 9 to over 100
188 pages

AUGUST 28th, 2017!!!

A middle grade novel in verse that tells the story of a Cuban-American boy who visits his family’s village in Cuba for the first time—and meets a sister he didn’t know he had.

Edver isn’t happy about being shipped off to Cuba to visit the father he barely knows. The island is a place that no one in Miami ever mentions without a sigh, but travel laws have suddenly changed, and now it’s a lot easier for divided families to be reunited. Technology in Cuba hasn’t caught up with the times, though, and Edver is expecting a long, boring summer.

He was NOT expecting to meet a sister he didn’t know he had. Luza is a year older and excited to see her little brother, until she realizes what a spoiled American he is. Looking for something—anything—they might have in common, the siblings sneak onto the Internet, despite it being forbidden in Cuba, and make up a fake butterfly. Maybe now their cryptozoologist mother will come to visit. But their message is intercepted by a dangerous poacher, and suddenly much more than their family is at stake. Edver and Luza have to find a way to overcome their differences to save the Cuban jungle that they both have grown to love.


Through lovely rhyme and verse, this tale paints a plot with feelings and emotions, allowing the beauty and depth to meld with adventure.

Edver and Luza might be brother and sister, but they come from two very different worlds. When Edver's mother suddenly sends him away from Florida to travel to Cuba, he's not sure what to make of anything. Especially when he meets Luza, the sister he didn't know that exists. Confusion reigns, but as they grow together, an adventure begins which will bond them for life.

This is a story written in verse. By flip-flopping between Edver and Luza, the author allows each character's thoughts to come to life through poetry. The plot unfolds slowly through each pair of eyes, while bringing in a beautiful depth not often seen in middle grade fiction. Each poem is relatively short - usually only between one to two pages - and opens up the story in all directions through a well thought out choice of words. Edver and Luza might be siblings, but they are different in every way. And it's this strong contrast which creates the extremely vivid imagery.

Two worlds collide. The children have grown up not only in different countries and cultures, but the gap between their wealth, ideologies, interests, way of life and dreams is wider than the ocean that separates them. Doubt, anger, uncertainty, curiosity, hope and expectations pour from every page. The writing flows with tons of beauty, while adding a bit of adventure in as well. The added twist of preserving endangered species makes this a delightful read. There's even a short glossary and explanation at the end to help readers gain a deeper understanding of the danger these animals are in.

Although this is a beautiful, original and compelling read, most middle graders won't necessarily have the patience to dive into the woven words. The thoughts and feelings of Edver and Luza are well fitting for the age group, but the adventure comes slowly, and the characters develop with more depth than most readers of this age group are ready to swallow. But that doesn't mean that there aren't a few out there who wouldn't love to read this. A slightly older age group will possess the maturity required to digest this tale to its fullest, and adults are sure to enjoy it as well. These readers are sure to get lost in Luza and Endver's world and leave with a new appreciation for the problems people from different cultures face as well as the horrid troubles found in the animal world. 

And here she is. . .

MARGARITA ENGLE is the national Young People's Poet Laureate, and the first Latino to receive that honor. She is the Cuban-American author of many verse novels, including The Surrender Tree, a Newbery Honor winner, and The Lightning Dreamer, a PEN Literary Award for Young Adult Literature winner. Margarita was born in Los Angeles, but developed a deep attachment to her mother's homeland during childhood summers with relatives. She continues to visit Cuba as often as she can. Visit her at

Cover Reveal: Hair In All The Wrong Places 2 by Andrew Buckley

Last year, HAIR IN ALL THE WRONG PLACES by Andrew Buckley introduced us to teenage werewolf, Colin Strauss, and the creepy and strange town of Elkwood. The book was released by Month9Books and was also picked up by Scholastic Book Clubs in North America. Now it’s time for things to get hairier . . .

I reviewed this first book from Andrew Buckley last year and loved it (gave it 5-stars). Although I could place the whole review again here . . .that might be a bit much. So, if you're curious, head on over Here to see my exact thoughts.

ANYWAY. . . 

Today is the official cover reveal for HAIR IN ALL THE WRONG PLACES 2: THE PERILS OF GROWING UP WEREWOLF! Below you'll find the official cover along with links to pre-order your copy! The official release date is October 3rd (just a couple of days before this year's full hunter's moon) so mark your calendars!

You can check out Buckley's interview with Month9Books regarding what you can expect from the sequel, why he decided to write a werewolf series in the first place, introducing the new villain, and a couple of hints about the mystery surrounding Jeremy. 

Happy Howling!

And here it is!

Being a werewolf is no picnic. Colin’s constantly hungry, spends a ton of time shaving, and fights to keep his emotions in check to avoid turning into a giant, drooling, hairy, smelly, howling wolf. But Colin’s not the only creature hanging around the town of Elkwood. Vampires, zombies, goblins, ogres, and other questionable visitors and their various shenanigans have got everyone on edge.

Colin just wants to live a normal life, date, and get his homework done on time. But the town of Elkwood needs him. So when a secret government organization asks for his help, will he be able to control the animal inside, or will he give in to the perils of growing up werewolf?


Month9Books Interview -
Andrew Buckley’s Website -

Cover Reveal: Sunburner by Claire Luana

by Claire Luana
Moonburner #2
YA Fantasy

SEPTEMBER 25th, 2017!!!

Kai, the newly-crowned queen of Miina, finds her reign threatened by a plague of natural disasters that leave death and destruction in their wake. Are the gods truly angry at the peace between the moon and sunburners, or is something more sinister to blame? Kai’s throne and her very life may be forfeit unless she can appease the gods’ anger and her peoples’ superstitions.
Determined to find a solution, Kai and the Sunburner Prince Hiro embark on an extraordinary and dangerous journey to discover the true cause of the plagues. What they find is an ancient enemy determined to plunge their world into eternal darkness—and one desperate chance to save it.

And here she is. . .
Claire Luana grew up reading everything she could get her hands on and writing every chance she could. Eventually, adulthood won out, and she turned her writing talents to more scholarly pursuits, going to work as a commercial litigation attorney at a mid-sized law firm. While continuing to practice law, Claire decided to return to her roots and try her hand once again at creative writing. She has written and published the Moonburner Cycle and is currently working on a new trilogy about magical food. She lives in Seattle, Washington with her husband and two dogs. In her (little) remaining spare time, she loves to hike, travel, binge-watch CW shows, and of course, fall into a good book. 


Sale: Push & Pull by Emily Cyr

Title: Push & Pull
Emily Cyr

Hosted by: Lady Amber’s PR

 Book one in The Vampire Favors Series:      
Never make a deal with a vampire. It always comes back to bite you; or so Addison Fitzpatrick has learned. In true Addison-fashion, she'd angered a drug dealer; she may have "forgotten" to pay him. Just when it was time to pay the piper, she was offered a way out by an unlikely being. Cannon Blackwood, master of vampires, made her an offer she couldn't refuse. Now, Addison owes Cannon three favors.   
Seven years after that fateful meeting, just as Addison's life is getting back on track, Cannon calls in one of the favors she owes him. There is a new drug that threatens the very existence of the vampire race and Cannon needs Addison, along with his brother Lachlan, who happens to be a professional thief, to steal it and destroy any evidence of it.    
Not only is the future of the vampires on the line, but with both Cannon and Lachlan vying for her attention, her heart is as well. Addison has difficult choices to make and dangerous favors to repay if she wants to see the light of another day.

Emily Cyr is a stay-at-home mom turned writer. She holds a degree in middle grades education with certification in English and social science. She has always had a love of all things paranormal and fantasy, but it wasn’t until Emily’s husband said the words, “Why not?” that she considered putting her thoughts and ideas into the book, The Lightning Prophecy. This trilogy was just the start for Emily. It seemed to open a creative door that had been locked.
Emily has always been an avid reader. Through reading came her love of writing. The more she read, the more she knew she wanted to create her own world. Many of her first works were fan fiction.
Emily and her family currently reside in Cibolo, Texas. She has an incredibly supportive husband who is also an officer in the United States Air Force. They have three sons, ages 6, 4, and 1. Somehow, even with the demands of being a parent to two little boys, she finds time to escape to her fantasies and write them down.

Author Links:
Instagram: emilycyrauthor

Buy Links: