f0zKg0J4zFLYz-Yq0aednQVqREE Once Upon a Prologue: October 2011
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Friday, October 28, 2011

Follow Friday - #18

++ } Follow Me Friday, aka "Follow My Book Blog" is probably the coolest meme I've come across in awhile.  It's hosted over at Parajunkee's View and also now at Alison Can Read, and us amazing book-a-holics get the chance to answer a reading-related question, as well as make new friends over the weekend.  It's a great way to kick off said weekend, and a really fun and easy way of stealing our way into the hearts of fellow book blogger's.

{ ++ } Each week, Rachel and Alison each feature one lucky blogger and the feature this week is Ems at Ems Reviews Books; Alison's is Jessi at Reading in the Corner. Everyone please head on over to their blogs, follow, and show them some love!  It's a huge honor (I think!) to be featured.

Question of the Week

Q:  If you could have dinner with your favorite book character, who would you eat with and what would you serve?

{ ++ } My favorite book character is Daemon Sadi from Anne Bishop's Black Jewells trilogy, and frankly, were I to have him over to dinner, I'm not sure I would be able to concentrate on eating dinner.  Reason being is Daemon exudes sexuality like whoa, and I'd (hopefully) fall prey to that. However, were we to eat, I imagine it'd be something home-cooked, a meat-and-veggies deal. 

Until We Meet Again

Please check out my author interview with Victoria Schwab and giveaway of her debut novel, The Near Witch.  It's a spooky, romantic, awesome read, and what's even cooler is that if I reach 300 GFC followers by the time the giveaway ends, I'll give away a SECOND copy!  So follow me here or on Twitter, or go for any of the other extra entries available!  

Everyone have a fantastic weekend! 

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Review: Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi
Expected publication: 11.15.2011 (Harper Collins)
Pages: 432
Rating: 5 of 5 stars
Series: Shatter Me (1)
Further info: Goodreads | Amazon
Find the author online: Blog | Twitter 

Juliette hasn't touched anyone in exactly 264 days. The last time she did, it was an accident, but The Reestablishment locked her up for murder. No one knows why Juliette's touch is fatal. As long as she doesn't hurt anyone else, no one really cares. The world is too busy crumbling to pieces to pay attention to a 17-year-old girl. Diseases are destroying the population, food is hard to find, birds don't fly anymore, and the clouds are the wrong color.

The Reestablishment said their way was the only way to fix things, so they threw Juliette in a cell. Now so many people are dead that the survivors are whispering war- and The Reestablishment has changed its mind. Maybe Juliette is more than a tortured soul stuffed into a poisonous body. Maybe she's exactly what they need right now.

Juliette has to make a choice: Be a weapon. Or be a warrior.

My Review

Tahereh Mafi's debut novel opens by introducing us to Juliette, locked away from society and a dying civilization for 264 days, because Juliette has a secret, a gift, a curse: her touch is dangerous, possibly lethal to others.  Deprived of human contact, Juliette believes she is every foul thing anyone has ever called her.  Right away, my heart went out to her, because for every time she's been kicked, everyone who has called her a freak, even through being shunned by her own family, Juliette still has a good heart, and a lot of compassion.  She has spirit, and a genuine desire to reach out to others, which makes her ability all the more crushing.  And Juliette is stubborn, too, in a way that made me applaud her throughout the book: she will not let herself be used, and she will not allow herself to become the weapon others wants her to be.  She has morals and she has spunk, and a fierceness that I wish I had.  Over the course of Shatter Me, I fell head over heels for our tortured, uncertain, heroine.  I wanted to hold her so many times, and I wanted to grin triumphantly with her on a few other occasions. 

As superbly fleshed out as Juliette is, so are the other supporting characters, especially Adam, Kenji, and Warner.  I like my villains with a side of charming, the sort of evil you hate, but also find yourself kind of wishing they were in more scenes, and Warner was exactly that.  And although I loved Adam (more on him in a minute) Kenji was my absolute favorite secondary character.  I found him fascinating, and can't wait to find out more about him, as well as a few other characters who were introduced closer to the end of Shatter Me

Something else I really adored about Shatter Me was the relationship between Adam and Juliette.  I think at some point last year, I hit the plateau of thinking I'd seen it all in novels as far as romance; romance, for me, was starting to feel tired.  I've read a few books this year where I really connected with the couples, and Adam and Juliette are probably one of my absolute favorites.  I am tempted to go back and re-read the book just to read their scenes.  They were steamy when they needed to be, tender and sweet when they needed to be, and overall they felt so genuine, to me.  I loved what they each brought out in the other.  I think readers are really going to fall in love with these two! 

And I can't do the book justice without mentioning the Tahareh's writing style.  I could get lost in passages from Shatter Me, and I could post examples here, but all I'm going to do instead is just say...please read this book.  Please give it a chance.  There are a lot of disjointed or choppy passages, but there is a good reason behind them.   The structure is used to represent Juliette's fractured state of mind, and her feelings for the Reestablishment.  (I found the whole reasoning behind the Reestablishment scary and also totally possible, which made the story all the more gritty and realistic for me.)  Plus there is a fantastic set-up for the sequel, which I feel totally confident will only build on the fantastic, heart-wrenching, and poignant Shatter Me


This book was sent to me via the author in exchange for an honest review.  No money or compensation of any sort changed hands.  I read and review books purely for the love of doing so.  

Memorable Quote

“All I ever wanted was to reach out and touch another human being not just with my hands but with my heart.” - Juliette

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Review: Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick

Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick
Published: 10.13.2009 (Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing)
Pages: 391
Series: Hush, Hush (1)
Rating: 4 of 5 stars
Further info: Goodreads | Amazon
Find the author online: website | twitter

For Nora Grey, romance was not part of the plan. She's never been particularly attracted to the boys at her school, no matter how much her best friend, Vee, pushes them at her...until Patch comes along. 

With his easy smile and eyes that seem to see inside her, Nora is drawn to him against her better judgment, but after a series of terrifying encounters, Nora's not sure whom to trust. Patch seems to be everywhere she is, and to know more about her than her closest friends. She can't decide whether she should fall into his arms or run and hide. And when she tries to seek some answers, she finds herself near a truth that is far more unsettling than anything Patch makes her feel. 

For Nora is right in the middle of an ancient battle between the immortal and those that have fallen - and when it comes to choosing sides, the wrong choice will cost her life.

My Review

When I started Hush, Hush, I wasn't sure at first if this was the book for me.  With several parallels to Twilight, I was a little wary of the story; luckily, Becca Fitzpatrick quickly put all my fears to rest as she crafted a darkly thrilling novel that ended on a satisfying note, yet left me anxious for the sequel, to see if it answered the questions Hush, Hush, raised.  Yes, there is a lead female who is inexperienced when it comes to romance; yes, there is an instant attraction between the lead characters, and yes; there is the supernatural element with a threatening undercurrent.  But in no way does any of this detract from the story as the talented Ms Fitzpatrick waltzes toward a stunning finish.

While there were some areas I felt could use improvement, I found the story so enjoyable, and it definitely held my attention.  (I read most of it in one sitting.)  Nora and Patch's relationship was definitely what really hooked me.  From the start, Patch just exudes that "stay-away-from-me-I'm-not-good-for-you" vibe that I find appealing.  Added to that is the tortured side he reveals as the book unfolds.  That's pretty much a knock-out punch for me - bad-boy-with-a-good-heart is always going to make me swoon.  And Patch does have a heart though Becca Fitzpatrick had me wondering at points!  I love what Nora brings out in him, as well as what he makes her feel.  And I especially loved that their relationship was not unorthodox, that despite that instant spark of attraction, Nora fights it.  (Which led to some HOT moments!)

I was also a huge fan of the fact that Nora was a little more outgoing and confident than some YA heroines.  All too often authors just don't take the time to truly flesh out their lead female.  Nora wasn't quite as fierce as I wanted her to be (there were a couple moments I wanted her to punch Patch!) but she was pretty cool, and easily sympathetic.  I loved that she is able to keep a clear head about her own self-worth, and that even when she's falling for Patch, she is still able to make decision (good or bad) and that she remains her own person.  

I also loved all the humor in the book, especially Patch's darker humor.  All the characters had some good one-liners, even in unexpected moments.  Nora and Patch's banter had me cracking up at times.  And while I really dug the history and the reasoning behind what was happening to Nora, I also wished Becca Fitzpatrick had given us a little more depth.  I hope there will be more in Crescendo!  And this is really picky but some of the wording, like descriptive phrases and such seemed redundant.  Other than that, my only other gripe is that the prologue felt totally out of place.  I get why it was what it was, but I was hoping for more pay-off from what was begun there!  

Otherwise, I'm starting Crescendo soon, and for anyone who hasn't read Hush, Hush...why haven't you?  

Memorable Quote

“...I'm not good," he said, piercing me with eyes that absorbed all light but reflected none, "but I was worse.”- Patch

Author Interview + (Halloween) Giveaway: The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab

{ ++ } Victoria Schwab was kind enough to answer a few of my burning questions about her writing as well as about her novel, The Near Witch.  I finished this book and then kept thinking about it, and with Halloween around the corner, I knew I wanted to host a giveaway of this fantastic book.

About the Author

Victoria is the product of a British mother, a Beverly Hills father, and a southern upbringing. Because of this, she has been known to say "tom-ah-toes," "like," and "y'all."

She also tells stories.

She loves fairy tales, and folklore, and stories that make her wonder if the world is really as it seems. 

(author bio taken from the author's Goodreads page)

The Interview

{++} What inspired you to write The Near Witch?

NW was actually inspired by my love of fairy tale, and two sentences thought up six months apart.

1. There are no strangers in the town of Near.


2. The wind on the moors is a tricky thing.

{++} Do you have a favorite memory of writing The Near Witch?

There was something so intensely comfortable about the rhythm of writing this book. I carved out two hours every single night for two months, and would leave my senior art studio and walk to this coffee shop on the edge of campus and write from 9pm until the coffee shop closed at 11pm. By the time I sat down at one of the tables, tea in hand, I was ready. It was a kind of transformation, the way everything else fell away.

{++} Was there any certain point you realized you were a writer, or have you always known?

No. Or rather, not exactly. I always WANTED to be a writer, but at no point did I feel certain I would become one. At least, not a published one. I knew I would WRITE, because it makes me happy and whole, but I still don't believe I've become a publisher author. I find it best not to let myself believe it, and that way I keep slaving in the hopes of one day achieving that mantel. I don't know if I'll ever believe I've made it.

{++} Do you have a favorite fictional character or book? What about a book or series you wish you could visit?

I'm a big fan of Kristin Cashore's books, as well as Neil Gaiman's. But to visit, I'd probably choose The Mortal Instruments, especially if I could be a Shadowhunter, or Harry Potter, if I could get into Hogwarts :)

{++} What is your favorite part of the writing process? Is there any certain point that makes you giddy, or is the whole thing too awesome for words?

The beginning, embarking on a new idea, and the thrill and potential of it, and then the end. There is no greater high than completing a book, and looking back over the pages and marveling at the fact that somehow this tangled thing in your head is now outside of your head. As for the part between the beginning and end, well, that's a bit harder.

{++} If you weren't a writer, is there another career that would make you happy?

 I think I would be a baker. I really love working with my hands. And sugar. And I've always wanted to have a bakery where everything is named after a fairy tale character. But to be honest, I'd probably still write, even if it weren't a "career," especially because it doesn't FEEL like a career. It feels like a dream.

{++} Do you listen to music while you write, create playlists or anything, or prefer silence?

When I'm writing, I need ambient noise (the kind found in cafes) but I can't listen to music with lyrics, because I find it too distracting.

{++} How would you summarize The Near Witch, tweet-style?

 A fairy tale about a town called Near, where a stranger appears one night, and the following night the children vanish one by one by one.

{++} Can we expect more of the same type of prose (very haunting and almost poetic) from you in the future? Can you talk up your next project?

 My next project is as different as it can be, while still being me. There's a huge shift in the nature of the prose (a modern narrator) but I can't get away from my lyricism. I like the way words go together too much.

That next book is called THE ARCHIVED and I'm sickeningly excited about it, but because it doesn't come out for awhile, I'm not supposed to say much. I will say that it's a bit like Buffy meets The Shining meets If I Stay meets a library :)

Up for Grabs...

 The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab 

Why this book: It drew me in immediately.  (Check out my review.)  The writing was so lyrical and haunting, and perfectly matched the eerie plot.  I read the book about a month ago and now I'm wishing I had waited.  It's spooky and perfect for reading right now around Halloween!

The Giveaway...

All you have to do to enter is leave a comment!  But there are all sorts of opportunities for extra entries! 

Waiting on Wednesday - #15: Darker Still by Leanna Renee Hieber

{ ++ }  This weekly event/feature is graciously hosted by Jill of Breaking the Spine.  You know that feeling you get when you're browsing upcoming books on Goodreads or Amazon and one strikes your fancy?  Maybe you squee.  Maybe you giggle to yourself.  Maybe you bounce in your seat.  We all get excited (I do a combination of all three of the previous choices...) about new books, be it a favorite author you're familiar with, or someone whose work you'll be reading for the first time.  Jill's meme gives us the chance to spotlight what we are anxiously awaiting this week.

I'm waiting on...

The Picture of Dorian Gray meets Pride and Prejudice, with a dash of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

New York City, 1882. Seventeen-year-old Natalie Stewart's latest obsession is a painting of the handsome British Lord Denbury. Something in his striking blue eyes calls to her. As his incredibly life-like gaze seems to follow her, Natalie gets the uneasy feeling that details of the painting keep changing...

Jonathan Denbury's soul is trapped in the gilded painting by dark magic while his possessed body commits unspeakable crimes in the city slums. He must lure Natalie into the painting, for only together can they reverse the curse and free his damaged soul.

 Darker Still by Leanna Renee Heiber
Expected publication: 11.08.2011 (Sourcebooks)
Further info: Goodreads | Amazon

{ ++ } First of all, the cover is gorgeous.  And secondly, the plot sounds really spooky and kind of awesome.  I definitely feel drawn to this book and am going to give it a try!

{ ++ } What about y'all?  What are you waiting on this week?

Sunday, October 23, 2011

In My Mailbox - #13

{ ++ } Kristi at The Story Siren hosts this weekly meme which gives bloggers a chance to highlight the books we bought, checked out, won, or otherwise procured over the last week.  And whether I've came into money (brb, laughing forever) or only had the goods to splurge on a book or two, they all deserve some love.

{ ++ } This is my first IMM in a couple of weeks, so enjoy!  Be sure to leave me links to your IMMs so I can come visit.  :)

Received for Review

(Thank you to Michelle McCleod, Ashley Willis, and Macmillan publishing)

Tempest by Julie Cross [ Goodreads | Amazon ]

Love Potions by Michelle McCleod [ Goodreads | Amazon ]

The Calling by Ashley Lynn Willis [  Goodreads | Amazon ]


Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick [ Goodreads | Amazon ]

Crescendo by Becca Fitzpatrick [ Goodreads | Amazon ]

Silence by Becca Fitzpatrick [ Goodreads | Amazon ]

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor [ Goodreads | Amazon

Lord of Rage by Jill Monroe [ Goodreads | Amazon ]

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Giveaway winner: Take This Regret by Amy Lichtenhan

{ ++ } I'd like to send out a huge congratulations to the winner of the e-book copy of Amy Lichtenhan's Take This Regret.  The winner is Sharon at Obsession with Books

{ ++ } Thank you to everyone who entered.  Check back soon for a new giveaway and another chance to win!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Guest Post: Author Amy Lichtenhan

After Amy approached me to read and review her novel, Take This Regret,  I knew within a few chapters that I was reading something very special.  I stretched out my reading of the novel over several days simply because I quickly grew so attached to the characters, and to Amy's writing - so much so that I partnered with Amy to host an e-book giveaway of Take This Regret, which is going on now!  Please head on over to check that out once you read Amy's guest post on the subject of why she writes, as she so aptly calls it, "romance with more."


Thank you to Molli for inviting me to be a guest on Once Upon a Prologue! 

I was really excited when she asked me to share with you about the reasons I write Romance With More.

At the heart of it all, I guess the answer to that is pretty simple – I read and write romances because the stories make me feel so good.  I love immersing myself in two character’s lives and witnessing firsthand the progression of their relationship and the intimacy that goes along with it.

When reading I rarely venture out of romance. There are so many worries as we travel from one day to the next, the stresses and fears, that when I sit down with a book, I want to be guaranteed that happily ever after. When in real life I know things can’t always work out the way I might want them to, I know in the pages of my favorite book they can.

Anyone else out there with me?

So what about this whole Romance With More thing?

When writing both Pulled and Take This Regret, I tried to delve deeper into the characters emotions and, in the process, really give you as a reader the chance to connect with them.  When you read one of my novels, I want you to feel what my characters feel, to hope for them and to hurt for them, to care about them and their ultimate happiness. I also love to write children into my plots since as women we either have children or, if we don’t, we can understand wholeheartedly the innate need to protect them. Mix those two together and the story lines can get a little intense.

The tag line Romance With More really came by way of reader’s comments. I kept hearing things like, I loved this book, but it wasn’t what I expected and This wasn’t a typical romance, there was more.

But my books are definitely romances—a hero and heroine on their way to a happily ever after, even if they have to face some very difficult trials before they get there.

So Romance With More just ended up sticking!

Now that you know why I write Romance With More, tell us a little about you. What is your favorite genre to read/write and why?

More about the author

(Bio taken from the author's website)
Amy Lichtenhan first found a love for writing during her days as a young mother and college student. She filled the journals she carried with short stories and poems used as an emotional outlet for the difficulties and joys she found in day-to-day life.

Years later, she shared a short story she’d been working on with her two closest friends, and with their encouragement, this story became her first full length novel, Pulled.

Amy resides in Southern Arizona where she lives with her husband and three beautiful children, where she enjoys the freedom of working from home. Her favorite pastime is spending time with the ones she loves.

Read the first chapter of Take This Regret here | preview chapter one of Pulled here
Visit Amy's Facebook page
Follow Amy on Twitter or Goodreads

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Review: Eve by Anna Carey

Eve by Anna Carey
Pages: 318
Series: Eve (1)
Rating: 3 of 5 stars
Further infoGoodreads | Amazon
Find the author online site | twitter

The year is 2032, sixteen years after a deadly virus—and the vaccine intended to protect against it—wiped out most of the earth’s population. The night before eighteen-year-old Eve’s graduation from her all-girls school she discovers what really happens to new graduates, and the horrifying fate that awaits her.

Fleeing the only home she’s ever known, Eve sets off on a long, treacherous journey, searching for a place she can survive. Along the way she encounters Caleb, a rough, rebellious boy living in the wild. Separated from men her whole life, Eve has been taught to fear them, but Caleb slowly wins her trust...and her heart. He promises to protect her, but when soldiers begin hunting them, Eve must choose between true love and her life.

My Review

The night before her graduation, sheltered Eve has an eye-opening experience: she discovers what waits beyond the walls of her school.   And for the first time in her life, Anna Carey's sheltered heroine has to make a decision for herself that will profoundly affect her future.  I admired Eve's courage...the bravey it takes to leave behind the only life she's ever known, but I wanted to cringe reading about her on her own, because of how ill-prepared she is to cope with the situation she's in.  Eve doesn't know how to make a fire or hunt, or gather any food.  She simply has never been taught anything; the school and the Teachers have always provided everything she needed.  

Eve loses a little of her doe-eyed innocence throughout the book, but her naive view of the world colored the book for me, and I never really connected with her as a character.  I couldn't help but sympathize with her to an extent - everything she's ever believed is in question.  She's being forced to ask herself if the people who have always taken care of her ever had her best interest at heart, if the King of New America can really be trusted, and so forth.  But I think I kept waiting for her to take some major steps forward, which didn't really happen until the very end of the book, for me.  

I found a lot about this book interesting though.  I thought Arden, a secondary character, was fascinating.  I am really hoping she will show up in the sequel.  I enjoyed her both as a foil to Eve, and as an individual.  I also loved Caleb.  He was a rather swoon-worthy love interest (and I could kiss Anna Carey for NOT including a love triangle.)  Caleb and Eve gravitate toward one another a little quickly, but much more slowly than in some books I have read.  To me, their connection felt sweet and genuine, and was one of my favorite things about the books, as well as Eve's time with the group of refugee boys.  

Some things that got under my skin: the King's ulterior motive.  It was tossed out there, but never really fleshed out.  I assume that will be explained in the sequel.  Also, it bugged me that at one point Eve clearly stated she didn't have many memories of her mother, but then throughout the book, she has vivid flashbacks.  And I was kind of dismayed that there wasn't more information about the plague. I feel like the world-building could have been a little more fleshed out.  

Otherwise, this was an interesting look at a rebuilt America, and I am definitely intrigued enough to look into the sequel when it is available.  


This book was provided to me from the author in exchange for an honest review.  No money or compensation of any kind changed hands.  

Memorable Quote

I opened my eyes to the face I'd imagined so many times.  Caleb smiled, his hair tickling my forehead.  I pressed my hands to his cheeks, wondering if I was having a waking dream.  His skin was warm against my fingers.  I wasn't sure whether to cry or laugh. 

Instead, I just hugged him.  Our bodies pressed into one, our arms pulled the other nearer and nearer still, until nothing was between us, not even air. 

Monday, October 10, 2011

Review + E-book Giveaway: Take This Regret by Amy Lichtenhan

Take This Regret by Amy Lichtenhan
Pages: 252
Rating: 4 of 5 stars
Further info: Goodreads | Amazon
Find the author online: twitter | site

There are some mistakes we make that we will regret for the rest of our lives. For Christian, it was the day he betrayed Elizabeth.

Christian Davison has a plan for his life. He is determined to become an attorney and to one day take his place as partner in his father’s law firm. Nothing will stand in his way, not even Elizabeth Ayers and their unborn child.

After Christian cuts her from his life, Elizabeth spends the next five years struggling to provide for her daughter and willing to sacrifice anything to give her child a safe, comfortable life.

For five years, Christian has regretted the day he walked away from his family and will do anything to win them back just as Elizabeth will do anything to protect her daughter from the certain heartache she believes Christian will bring upon them.

When Christian wrestles his way into their lives, Elizabeth is faced with asking herself if it is possible to forgive someone when they’ve committed the unforgivable and if it is possible to find a love after it has been buried in years of hate. Or are there some wounds that go so deep they can never heal?

They say everyone deserves a second chance.

My Review

In Take This Regret, we are introduced to two unforgettable characters: Christian Davison and Elizabeth Ayers.  They are both pursuing a career in law for different reasons, but an unexpected pregnancy changes Elizabeth's course.  Within the first few pages of the prologue, my heart went out to her - this strong female, determined to have her child, with or without Christian's support.  I immediately wanted to hug Elizabeth tight, and I so admired her courage.  Fast-forward five years: Elizabeth is a single mother; Christian is a rising star in his father's law firm.  But even though he has the life he has always wanted, until a chance encounter with the daughter he walked away from before she was born.  

Amy Lichtenhan propels the story forward with perfect pacing - there is action when needed, heart-pounding and intense at times, and other, slower periods where the reader gets to watch a changing Christian bond with his young daughter, Lizzie.  Wrapped around the pacing is the heart of this story: Christian and Elizabeth, and their love for their daughter.  We see Elizabeth struggle with letting Christian have any part in her life, just as we see him battle with the guilt and the shame he carries for having missed the first five years of her life.  Lichtenhan does an seamless job of lifting these characters and their emotions off the pages.  I cried, more than once, reading this story, because of what it made me feel.  

The characters were all genuine, people you would want to know, or have known, but Christian, for me, was by far the most fascinating.  An arrogant rich boy following in his father's footsteps when we first meet him, the growth he goes through, the changes he exhibits, and the humility he learns, are truly fabulous and well-told.  Elizabeth grows so much as a character, as well.  I thought a great deal about these two, when I wasn't reading Take This Regret, and about their relationship.  So much bloomed between them over the course of hte story, sometimes unsaid, often complicated, but to me, they felt so true-to-life.  Relationships happen, they end.  It's all of it hard work, and I feel like Amy did an amazing job of showcasing Christian's redemption, and Elizabeth's hesitation.   

I had a few issues with getting into the book.  The prologue rapidly switches point-of-view, which threw me off a lot, but after the first couple chapters, I was hooked.  I also was not okay with someone Elizabeth did, a choice she made that affected her daughter, and was glad, so glad, to see it all resolved.  And...I wish the book had been longer!  The story was wrapped up nicely, but those 252 pages flew by, and I would have liked a little more time with a few of the characters, especially Christian's mother, who also showed fantastic character growth.  There was just so much of that in the book that I'm still swoooning a little.  

Overall I would recommend this book for fans of both contemporary romance and women's fiction . Amy Lichtenhan's writing style is easy, natural, and her story-telling is spell-binding.  Take This Regret is a story with a strong, beating heart.  It will stay with you, even after you read the last page, because along the way, you didn't just meet characters: you made friends.  

Memorable Quote>

Why? I begged him with my thoughts, with my touch as I kissed him again. Why did you have to ruin us?   My mouth traveled to his jaw, kissed him there against the rough skin, fire against my lips and torment to my soul, where I mouthed out my deepest secret, “I love you, Christian.” 

Sickened and ashamed, I ripped myself away, escaped upstairs, and wept for a man I’d never allow myself to have. 

Disclaimer and Thank-You's

This book was sent to me by the author in exchange for an honest review.  No money or compensation of any kind changed hands.  I would like to thank author Amy Lichtenhan and The Writer's Coffee Shop Publishing House for allowing me to read this novel.

The Giveaway

Sunday, October 2, 2011

In My Mailbox: #12

{ ++ } Kristi at The Story Siren hosts this weekly meme which gives bloggers a chance to highlight the books we bought, checked out, won, or otherwise procured over the last week.  And whether I've came into money (brb, laughing forever) or only had the goods to splurge on a book or two, they all deserve some love.

{ ++ }This my first EVER VLOG edition.  In it, I learned two things. One: I really hate filming myself. Two: I have been in denial for a long time about how bad my Southern accent is.  But I hope ya'll enjoy it.  :)

Lord of the Vampires by Gena Showalter
Further info: Goodreads | Amazon

Matched by Ally Condie
Further info: Goodreads | Amazon

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
Further info: Goodreads | Amazon

Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi
Further info: Goodreads | Amazon

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Giveaway Winner: Hourglass by Myra McEntire

{ ++ } Today I'm announcing the winner of my Hourglass giveaway, and that lucky winner is Anna over at Literary Exploration!  Congratulations, Anna!  I've also notified her by email so that I can get the prize out soon.

{ ++ } I want to send out a BIG BIG thank you to everyone who entered the giveaway and helped make it such a huge success.   You guys really put in a lot of work, following me via GFC and Twitter and talking up my giveaway.  Through this giveaway, I've increased to an amazing 258 followers, which is totally wild and wonderful.  So again, THANK YOU to everyone who participated.  I am so glad to have ya'll here with me.

{ ++ } Keep spreading the word about my little blog and I promise an awesome giveaway at 300 followers!  Until then, happy reading everyone.  And if you didn't win this time, enter next time for a chance.  : )