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Thursday, March 30, 2017

Book Blitz+Giveaway: "The Animal Under the Fur" by E.J. Mellow


The Animal Under the Fur 
E.J. Mellow
Publication date: March 30th 2017
Genres: Action, Adult, Romance
From award-winning author E. J. Mellow comes an action romance dripping with vengeful delight.

Orphaned on the streets as a baby, Nashville Brown, a.k.a Kill Operative 3, knows better than to rely on anyone. With heightened senses and superhuman strength to survive, she’s been raised as the perfect assassin.
The trick to her success? Keeping everyone, even her best friend, at arm’s length.
Losing his entire family in the span of a year, Carter Smith left his ability to love buried deep in their graves. His only concerns now are completing his missions and effortlessly charming the next temptress to warm his bed.
The key to his accomplishments? Working alone mixed with a Casanova smile.
But when a deadly weapon needs to be stopped from falling into the wrong hands, the lone wolves find themselves thrown into an explosive partnership. Can Carter and 3 lower their guns aimed at one another long enough to succeed, or will their unwillingness to compromise end up destroying more than their perfect records? Whatever their differences, both agree on one thing—in the game of lies and deceit, the line between friend and foe is often blurred by blood splatter.
The Animal Under The Fur is a hate-to-loath-to-love standalone novel filled with savagery, secrets, and enough angst to wrinkle the pages you’ll find gripped in your hands.




Author Bio:
E.J. Mellow is the award-winning author of the contemporary fantasy trilogy The Dreamland Series and The Animal Under The Fur. With a bachelor's degree in Fine Arts, E.J. Mellow splits her time between her two loves – visual design and writing. Residing in NYC, E.J. is a member of Romance Writers of America and their Fantasy, Futuristic & Paranormal Chapter. She has no animals but loves those who do.









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Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Excerpt Reveal: "Twist" (Dive Bar #2) by Kylie Scott

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                                                    twist


From New York Times bestselling author Kylie Scott comes the second sizzling stand-alone novel in the Dive Bar series! When his younger brother loses interest in online dating, hot bearded bartender Joe Collins only intends to log into his account and shut it down. Until he reads about her. Alex Parks is funny, fascinating, and pretty much everything he's been looking for in a woman—except that she lives across the country. Soon they're emailing up a storm and telling each other their deepest, darkest secrets...except the one that really matters. When Alex pays Joe a surprise visit, however, they both discover that when it comes to love, it's always better with a twist.


  Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon AUS | Amazon CA | iBooks | B&N | Kobo | Google Play 



                                         exclusive without tape


 I watched the streetlights cast shadows on the angle of his cheekbone, the furrow of his brow. Strange how his manly beauty had grown on me, redefining or rather stretching my usual boundaries. Perhaps some people’s allure came from the inside out.
A good thing.
Their ways and their words did the wooing instead of their physical appeal. Not to diss Joe’s impressive physique. As nice as a pretty face was, though, the personality, the person beneath the skin, should matter more. Anything else was pretty shallow and unlikely to last. Guess that was the difference between my scratching an itch with a stranger and the way this man had me tied up in knots. And not even neat, sea-worthy knots. I’m talking, haven’t washed or brushed your hair in forever and there’s a big old mess back there.
 Shit. At the bar, he’d flirted with me. Full-on flirted with me, his supposed platonic friend who was not his type. No way did I know what to do. Normally Valerie would be first on my hit list of people to call. But she’d just tell me to jump him, regardless of what else was going on, or any possible consequences. Plus, with him beside me it would be kind of uncool. But a couple of whisky sours or no, I was pretty certain I hadn’t imagined his interest.
 As Mom had always said, however, best to be sure.
 “What are the renovating plans for tomorrow?” I asked.
 “Rip out the old fittings and prepare the space for new.”   I nodded.
“So we’ll be doing some pounding and screwing?”
 “Ah, yeah.” The man cast me a look out of the corner of his eye. “Sound okay?”
 “Absolutely. Can’t wait to get my hands back on that big hard hammer.”
 “Great,” he said, throwing me another questioning look. I gave a nice bland smile.
 Yeah, pal. Two could play at the what-the-fuck-is-going-on flirting game. I turned in my seat, all the better to face him.
“Did you want to bang, Joe?”
 “What did you say?” Wide eyes flashed my way.
 “Like I did on that wall today. That was fun,” I said with all due sincerity.
“Will we be doing more of that?”
 A pause.
“Sure.”
 “Awesome.”
 Another quizzical look.
 “Something wrong?” I inquired politely.
 “No.”
His Adam’s apple dipped as he swallowed hard, shifting in his seat, gaze decidedly unsure. The poor fool couldn’t begin to understand the crazy he’d unleashed with his little taunt. Get rough with the man? My starved libido was well beyond the rough-and-tumble stage. No more hiding or denying, sticking to the sidelines of life. It was my time to step forward and be brave. When it came to Joe Collins, I was more than ready to say yes.
 “I just . . .” he started. “Never mind.” Neither of us spoke as he pulled into a parking space a short walk down from the hotel. I leaned over, placing my hand on his denim-covered thigh. The muscle tensed beneath my fingers. Shame on me for straying a little close to his loins.
 “Thanks so much for tonight, Joe. I’m so glad we decided to be friends. Because you, sir, make a great friend.”
 “Right. Good.” A frown.
“How much did you have to drink again?”
 “Not nearly enough. Quick, let’s get to my hotel room so I can have more!” I threw open my door. “Okay.” Hands stuffed in his pockets, he followed me inside, lingering a step or two behind. Guess he didn’t like it when people’s moods got all mixed up and mercurial either. Funny, that. I nodded to the dude at the front desk and pressed the button on the elevator. It opened immediately. Mirrors and old-timeylooking wooden framing decorated the small space.
We both leaned against the back wall as it slowly ascended. “Yeah, sure can’t wait to do some banging, and pounding, and screwing around with you, Joe.” I smiled. “Sound good?” He just gave me a dry look from his superior height.
All confusion gone from his handsome face. Confined spaces only made him seem bigger, even more imposing than usual. No way, no day, however, was I crawling back into my shell or turning into a shadow. We’d agreed to work on our issues, so fine, I was putting it out there. Still, my bravado was fading, I could barely meet his eyes. The man affected me in all the ways.
 “It’s hard, no pun intended this time, because sometimes it feels like you want to be just friends,” I said. “But then other times you flirt with me and I honestly don’t know what’s going on. No huge surprise there, I know. Social awkwardness is my jam. But I thought I mostly understood where you were coming from.”
 A ding from the elevator and the doors opened at our stop. I walked out, his bearded hotness following slowly behind, stalking me almost. For certain his usual cool, easy-going-guy persona was missing in action. The man radiated tension, intensity, even. And if he didn’t, I definitely did. Inside the hotel room I went for mood lighting, only turning on the table and bedside lamps. I rubbed sweaty hands against the sides of my pants.
“What you said back at the bar about me getting rough with you, however. Now, that almost sounded like a dare.”
 “Did it?”
 “It did.” Arms hanging loose at his sides, he just watched me, saying nothing. Jerk.
 “So tell me.” I stood at the foot of the bed, facing him. Every part of me was wired, wide awake. “What’s going on, Joe?” His shoulders rose and fell on a deep breath.
“I realized something tonight.”
 “What?”
 “That I was falling into old habits. Doing what was easy instead of doing what I wanted.”
 “Huh?”
 “It was just before you spilled ice on that guy’s pants.”
 “Sure. I can see how you’d be seduced by my smooth moves,” I said, voice filled with much doubt. My insides were ready to spontaneously combust. I swear I could feel sweat breaking out all over me, the man was just that hot. Also, my nerves were on high alert. One corner of his lips tipped up.
“You know how you said you weren’t jealous?”
 “Yes?”
 “Well, I was.”
 Wow. I had nothing.
 “This is the part where you’re supposed to admit you were jealous too,” he supplied.
 “I didn’t think it needed to be said. I’m not that good a liar.”
 “True,” he said. “Anyway, I made the pass at you and then I was leaving it up to you to figure out what you want. To be brave and make the next move.” Softly, I laughed and shook my head. Men were such idiots.
 “Make the first move? This isn’t a game. As I said last time the subject of sex came up, previous hurt feelings, etc. It’s going to get complicated.”
 “Yeah, probably,” he said, voice deeper than I’d ever heard it.


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kyliescottimage     Kylie is a New York Times and USA Today best-selling author. She was voted Australian Romance Writer of the year, 2013 & 2014, by the Australian Romance Writer’s Association and her books have been translated into eleven different languages. She is a long time fan of romance, rock music, and B-grade horror films. Based in Queensland, Australia with her two children and husband, she reads, writes and never dithers around on the internet.

You can learn more about Kylie from http://www.kylie-scott.com/   FACEBOOK | TWITTER | FACEBOOK FAN GROUP | INSTAGRAM | GOODREADS

Cover Reveal: "All Closed Off" (Rusk University #4) by Cora Carmack

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From New York Times bestselling author Cora Carmack, comes the highly anticipated fourth standalone title in her Rusk University Series, ALL CLOSED OFF! A passionate story and journey, get ready to be mesmerized with Stella’s story! ALL CLOSED OFF is coming your way May 1, 2017!

                         ALL CLOSED OFF - cover

Cover Design and Photography by Kelsey Kukal-Keeton at K. Keeton Designs

ABOUT ALL CLOSED OFF (Releasing May 1, 2017):

Stella Santos is fine.

Maybe something terrible happened to her that she can’t even remember. And maybe it drives her crazy when her friends treat her like she’s on the verge of breaking because of it. Maybe it feels even worse when they do what she asks and pretend that it never happened at all. And maybe she’s been getting harassing emails and messages for months from people who don’t even know her, but hate her all the same.
But none of that matters because she’s just fine.
For Ryan Blake, Stella was always that girl. Vibrant and hilarious and beautiful. He wanted her as his best friend. His more than friends. His everything and anything that she would give him. Which these days is a whole lot of nothing. She gets angry when he’s there. Angry when he’s not there. Angry when he tries to talk and when he doesn’t.
When Stella devises an unconventional art project for one of her classes all about exploring intimacy—between both friends and strangers—Ryan finds himself stepping in as guinea pig after one of her subjects bails. What was supposed to be an objective and artistic look at emotion and secrets and sex suddenly becomes much more personal. When he hits it off with another girl from the project, Stella will have to decide if she’s willing to do more than make art about intimacy. To keep him, she’ll have to open up and let herself be the one thing she swore she’d never be again.
Vulnerable.
    ALL CLOSED OFF - full cover wrap  

Add it to your Goodreads

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Don’t Miss All of Cora’s Standalone Rusk University Series Titles!

 

ALL LINED UP

Amazon ** Barnes & Noble ** iTunes

ALL BROKE DOWN

Amazon ** Barnes & Noble ** iTunes

ALL PLAYED OUT Amazon ** Barnes & Noble ** iTunes





Cora Carmack - author pic      About Cora Carmack: Cora Carmack is a twentysomething New York Times bestselling author who likes to write about twentysomething characters. Raised in a small Texas town, she now lives in New York City and spends her time writing, traveling, and marathoning various TV shows on Netflix. She lives by one rule: embrace whatever the world throws at you and run with it (just not with scissors).          

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Cora Carmack Goodreads









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Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Cover Reveal: "Starshine" by Melody Winters


Starshine
Melody Winter
Publication date: 29 March
Genres: New Adult, Romance
Film student Ella Summers can’t believe her luck when she is selected to work on the set of the most anticipated film release of the year—STARSHINE. For the next four weeks, she’ll be in the studio with heart-throb and leading man Alex Denton, and his co-star—and recent ex—the stunning Amy Strickland.
But her first day on set has her questioning the true character of the enigmatic and sexy Alex. The charming celebrity she’s adored on screen disappears before her very eyes—if indeed he ever really existed.
Off-camera arguments between Alex and Amy become difficult to ignore, and when Ella uncovers layers of deceit and closely guarded secrets between them, she becomes involved in a battle that has far-reaching implications.
With the paparazzi hounding her every move for the most sensational story they can get, Ella becomes deeply embroiled in Alex’s life. Can she break down his seemingly impenetrable walls, or will he remain the arrogant ass she first met?
STARSHINE is set in London, England. Beware though—Alex Denton has a crude mouth, and an equally wicked smile.








Author Bio:
Growing up, Melody showed a natural ability in art, a head for maths, and a tendency to write too long English essays. Difficult to place in the world when she graduated, she pursued a career in teaching, but ended up working in finance. Melody is convinced the methodical times she spends working with numbers fuel her desire to drift into dream worlds and write about the illusory characters in her head.
Melody Winter lives in York, North Yorkshire, England with her husband and two sons. When not dealing with football, rugby, and a whole plethora of 'boy' activities, she will be found scribbling notes for her stories, or preparing for another trip to the nearby beaches at Scarborough and Whitby. With an obsession for anything mythical, Melody revels in reading and writing about such creatures.

For more information on Melody visit www.melodywinter.com or connect on Twitter @melodywinter




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Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Authors I'm Dying To Meet


                                          

This meme is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.
This week’s topic is Top Ten Tuesday #103: Top 10 authors I'm dying to meet. Since I've never attended any of the bookish events, like Apollycon or BEA, here's a list of the authors I'd love to meet!


10: Emily Taylor, author of "A Soul to take": She is a debut author from REUTS Publications and I had the honor to know her from Wattpad. She has an amazing writing style and she is pretty cool too! Don't tell her that but she also creates amazing covers! ;)


9: Anne-Marie McLemore, author of "When the moon was ours": I loved her first book "The Weight of Feathers" and I'd love to meet her one day in person!



8: J.R. Ward, author of The Black Dagger Brotherhood series and more: Yeah, I'm pretty much obsessed with her stories! Filled with amazing characters and action, this is an author I'd love to meet in person too!


7:  Nalini Singh, author of the Psy-Changeling series and the Guild Hunter series: You clearly know a good urban fantasy book when you read one of Nalini's stories. Though I love all of her books for me the Guild Hunter series is one of the best!



6: Claudia Gray, author of the Firebird series and the Evernight series: Also one of my favorite authors. I'd love to discuss anything sci-fi or Star Wars related with her!



5: Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff, authors of the ILLUMINAE series and their own respective books: I couldn't seperate this duo of awesomeness! I'm always jealous of the bloggers who get the chance to take photos of them on BEA or other bookish events!



4: J.M. Frey, author of the Accidental Turn series: I couldn't leave out yet another one of my favorite REUTS authors! Her humor and style as also her characters are some of the best I've know in all my years of blogging!



3: Jennifer Armentrout, author of too many books to count! From Greek mythology and aliens to the New Adult genre, no one can match with Jennifer and her amazing talent of creating funny and emotional characters! She pretty much made me obsessed with Supernatural and West Virginia references too!
I don't know what I'd do first if I ever met her in person.



2: Sarah J. Maas, author of the Throne of Glass series and A Court of Thorns and Roses series: I also hope not to faint when I meet this author. I'm pretty sure her waiting line is HUGE in every event. And I hope her hand will be better soon!



1: Neil Gaiman, one of the best authors I had the honor to read: "Stardust" was the first story I had the chance to read (from a birthday gift) and I loved it even more than the movie. Now with "American Gods" coming on April as a tv series and his recent book "Norse Mythology", which was a masterpiece, I think I'll just stand mutely in a corner.



Honorable mentions:









Saturday, March 25, 2017

Cover Reveal+Excerpt: "A Chosen War" by Carly Eldridge






Summary from GoodReads

Nineteen-year-old Maia has spent her life haunted by dreams of a man with uniquely brilliant blue eyes. She never expected she’d actually come face-to-face with him, or that he’d be the harbinger of a chaotic new life. But as shocking as meeting Blake is, it’s less unsettling than her sudden ability to adversely affect electronics and seemingly control—even heal—plants.


Before she can figure out what’s happening, Blake’s cryptic warning about the impending approach of something big manifests as a freak earthquake, destroying Maia’s home and killing her parents. Devastated, Maia has no choice but to turn to Blake, where she learns that the earthquake was not as natural as it seemed. The reigning Terra guardian, or Mother Earth, has gone rogue, wiping out her replacements in a series of orchestrated natural disasters around the world—and Maia is next.


Worse, she’s the only one who can stop the Terra guardian from destroying not just Earth, but the fabric of the universe itself. Now, thrust into a world of celestial beings charged with the protection of the universe, Maia must come to terms with her new powers, and the idea that her destiny was shaped long ago. And she must do it all before she faces off with the woman who controls nature itself.

Intelligent and thought-provoking, A Chosen War takes the idea that everything is connected and wraps it in globe-spanning adventure with just a tinge of romance.



Release date: April 25th, 2017
Page count: TBD
Formats: Trade paperback, .mobi, .ePub, .PDF
Paperback ISBN: 978-1-942111-41-2
Electronic ISBN: 978-1-942111-42-9
Price: TBD
Distribution: Smashwords, Amazon KDP, Ingram Content Group



Enviromental changes and a war across the fabric of space? Sign me in!








EXRERPT

Something brushed against the tips of her fingers, accompanied by a tiny electrical shock. Yelping, Maia jumped back, shoving the abused digits into her mouth to suck away the pain. Only then did she notice the azalea bush beside her. It had been entirely barren this morning, way past its bloom, but had since erupted in fresh blossoms.

However, it’s sudden flowering wasn’t what had made her heart falter in fear. Now, instead of its typical dark pink flowers, red and white florets also competed for space. Choking back a scream at the waxy perfection of the plants, she ran into the house with images of Disney movie magic scampering along in her mind. Taking the first right turn, Maia careened by her homemade dark room and down the hallway to her bedroom. Slamming the door behind her with a kick of a muddy foot—the clogs abandoned halfway down the hall—Maia stood in the middle of her artistically chaotic---some would argue, messy---sanctuary, staring at her fingers.

Maia shook them out, tilting her head back until it met the door behind her with a thud. What was going on? Maia’s chest tightened as she started to hyperventilate, and her stomach responded with another wave of nausea. She hadn’t eaten anything yet that morning, and she shuddered to think what her stomach would produce.
“Get a grip,” Maia repeatedly muttered.
“Get a freaking grip. I can only control me.”
Placing her hands on her knees, Maia tried to sort through the facts.
Ok, number one: her father’s illness, two: Beth’s grief and absurd work schedule, three: the long list of missed opportunities of a promising career, and now . . . this? How was she supposed to handle it all? In the next few days, Maia was expecting to hear back on some possible freelance contracts in the area. What she really needed was the money and the exposure, not hallucinations. Sure, crazy made for good art, but Maia wasn’t into the avant-garde. Whatever happened in the garden was a fluke.






About the Author:

Carly Eldridge is the author of A Chosen War (April 2017). She calls New York City home; the vitality of the metropolis, with its rich history and culture, provides an unending source of inspiration. She can often be found exploring the city, in awe of its always surprising display of art, beauty, and raw American grit.

www.carlyeldridge.com | createdbycarly@gmail.com | @endlessbindings






Friday, March 24, 2017

Movie Review: Beauty and the Beast


When I first created Milky Way of Books I had in mind about reviewing not only books but also movies. In the end I decided to keep the blog book-only.

BUT, today is the exception! I finally had the chance to go and watch the adaptation I've been waiting for since 2016! Beauty and the Beast is one of my top Disney classics and I would like to take the chance and give this movie both the pros and the cons it deserves.

NOTE: I'll try not to spoil you much BUT if you've seen the Disney 1991 version then you can't be spoiled about the ending.



                                                                   *Thanks Sherlock*

The movie begins with the much known prologue but instead of the male narrator we have a female one. The costumes and the historical element the movie gets adds more depth in the timeline where the story takes place.

Personally, I've placed the plot on France in the beginning of the 19th century probably after the French revolution or after the Napoleon wars.


The prince is turned into the Beast and from there we move into Belle and her song. Now, here's an issue I noticed too along with other friends from the blogsphere. Belle is truly innovative and she doesn't only likes reading. She teaches how to read too, but the reactions of the villagers are bordeline into bullying.

They not only think her "odd" or "a beauty but a funny girl", they scorn her! And let's not get started with Gaston! Many have mentioned that Luke Evans would be a better Beast than Gaston. I disagree; the role fit him like a glove, he can sing and act and that can be seen into the scenes of the "Gaston" song.

Yes, none of the actors, except from Dan Stevens, have the PERFECT voice like the original ones, who were auditioned as musical actors too, but this is Hollywood. The comments about auto-tuning Emma Watson's voice, or how Ewan McGregor wasn't a great Lumiere maybe are true for some but for me ALL the actors and actresses gave their best.

Especially Emma. As Belle, she is smart and brave (watch the invitation to dinner scene), she understands from the start that there is a curse in the castle and even nurses the Beast back to health after the wolf attack.



The library scene was also one of the good points of the movie. I think that Disney dug into my mind and conjured THE Library I'd love to have if not the 1991 version. I loved how Belle and the Beast interact through all the movie but the library scene is one of the best ones.

I would prefer Belle to do a happy, squeaky dance as she goes to explore the books, but none is perfect. Also, I was very happy to see the Beast as a bookworm, especially when he argues with Belle about Shakespeare and Romeo and Julliet. That was funny!


And let's move into the ballroom scene. The setting was stunning and despite the different opinions I loved the dress. If it were made just like Cinderella's I think there'd be difficulty in moving. Just remember how she tried to escape.


A great dress but not much to move with.


At the same time the dancing between Belle and the Beast was sweet and you could see how emotional that could make anyone. The slow touches, how hesitant is the Beast at first but then he moves like a pro and also how great Belle gave the feels through all the scene.


There were two new songs also in the film. Knowing that Alan Menken was behind them made me sure that they would be amazing. Especially "Forevermore". I teared up when the Beast sung, because we may see usually in YA fiction the girl feeling lost and heart-broken, but with that song you could see a man who looks like a Beast, thinks he doesn't deserve the girl BUT he lets her go knowing that he will be left behind with the memories of her as a companion.

I wouldn't mind adding some of the Beast's screaming here, similar to the animated film.



And let's go into the final act. The "Mob song" is as scary as real life. And not only because Gaston becomes a lunatic, (there's also a suspicion from me that he suffers from PTSD but that doesn't give him points), but because the villagers FOLLOW HIM! There was once a post on Tumblr as also on Teen Vogue, where Gaston as a character represents all the bad things you can see in society. From misogynistic attitude to using his own friend, Gaston became more villainous in the film.

And I never minded his ending.



So, let's talk about LeFou. When I first saw the trailer I thought that he would be as simple minded as the animated version. But then the rumors about the gay representation spiked and everything when to hell. And I clearly couldn't understand why.

Why are people so angry with LeFou for being gay and don't notice other important elements of his character? How he tries to stop Gaston from being a complete wacko, or when he saves SOMEONE in the final battle? Why? You think there weren't homosexual men and women in 19th century? In a time where for a woman to know how to READ was a tabboo? Imagine how those people felt.

At the same time he offers a happy tune to the plot with his humor and his singing in the "Gaston" song.

The plot holes we also had from the animated version were filled in the movie. The curse also became even more horrible for both the servants and the Beast, not to mention that both Belle and the Beast had more family background here than in the 1991 version.

My ONLY tiny objection was the scene where the Beast dies. I didn't expect THAT to happen but the transformation was as stunning as the original one. There were no fireworks though...



The ending was very, very satisfying. Everyone in the cinema were singing "Be our Guest" and the final chorus of "Beauty and the Beast" song. Not to mention that I'll keep the mementos of going itno the cinema, like a dragon who hoards her gold.




Those are Greek by the way.
Will I go to watch the movie again? Yes, I will. And if you still don't want to see the movie after everything you've read and seen in general on the internet? Well then.




FINAL VERDICT: 5 OF 5 GLORIOUS STARS