Monday, September 28, 2020

Vampires of Portlandia, Jason Tanamor

 Vampires of Portlandia, 5/5


Pages: 374
Book Number: 1 of 1
Genre: YA, Supernatural / Fantasy, Mythology

Summary by Author: When Marcella Leones relocates her family of aswang vampires from the Philippines to Portland, Oregon, she raises her grandchildren under strict rules so humans will not expose them. Her only wish is to give them a peaceful life, far away from the hunters and the Filipino government that attempted to exterminate them.

Before she dies, she passes on the power to her eldest grandchild, Percival. He vows to uphold the rules set forth by Leones, allowing his family to roam freely without notice. After all, they are aswangs.

However, when the aswang covenant is broken, the murder rate in Portland rises drastically. Who is behind the murders? And who is behind the broken covenant? Along with sensie Penelope Jane, Percival must find the truth.

It's then they discover that there are other breeds of aswangs—werebeasts, witches, ghouls, and viscera—who have been residing in Portland for years.

Based on Filipino folklore (aswang), “Vampires of Portlandia” is a fantastical tale of different monsters coexisting in the weirdest city in America.

Opinions: Vampires of Portlandia is the epitome of YA vampire tales - diverse, electrifying, and atmospheric by all means. Even the protagonists' names support the eerie setting of Portland, Oregon! To start, the book's introduction does exactly that: introduce readers to the aswang culture and how Leones' coven plays into that. In what some readers describe as information dumps but I describe as strategic character introductions, we learn everything we need to know about all of our protagonists so that the rest of the book can focus on the dramatic, tense, and exhilarating plot. That said, once you make it past the first few chapters, you'll be on the edge of your seat with anticipation and second-hand fear as the story races through conflict after conflict. Nearing the end, as a reader it was difficult to say goodbye to my new literary idols but I couldn't wait for the climax to reach a conclusion and read the last of the pages that were each better than the last. As a whole, Vampires of Portlandia left me with chills down my spine, new favourite folklore to research, and resonating themes about family, acceptance, and open-mindedness to ponder. What is not to absolutely adore and fangirl about?

My Favourite Thing: Time for me to fangirl: I loved the Filipino folklore woven into Vampires of Portlandia! It was fresh, unique, and most of all, insightful. Obviously, vampires and supernatural creatures are seen as just that, nowadays: supernatural. However, by Tanamor writing an entire book around the legends of aswangs, he not only gave readers an entertaining story but introduced us into Filipino history and culture. I sincerely hope all readers take as much interest in the folklore as me and appreciate Tanamor's inclusion of these different creatures! 
My Least Favourite Thing: All of that said, Vampires of Portlandia was definitely a Twilight remix. For the most part, I loved that aswangs lived in Portland; it was an eccentric concept that supported diversity and introduced readers to other cultures' beliefs about the supernatural. However, this element of the story was poorly executed. The coven of aswangs relocated from the Philippines for not much reason and then complained about living in the shadows! It simply doesn't make sense because there were no aspirations or motivations to live elsewhere, meaning it is just a random and pointless fraction of the story. 

Total Rating: PG-13
Language: PG-12+
Adult Content: PG-12+
Violence: PG-13

Recommended For and Similar Reads: Vampires of Portlandia is an eccentric and fresh story for fans of folklore and supernatural literature. Similar reads are Interview With the Vampire by Anne Rice, The Devil's Apprentice by Kenneth B Andersen, Nocturnal Meetings of the Misplaced by R J Garcia, and The Purple Haze by Andrew Einspruch! 


Setting: Portland, Oregon
Publisher: Parliament Press
Edition: Kindle
Publication Date: 29 September, 2020
ASIN: B086W4XYPG
Per FTC regulations, please know that I received this title for free for review from the original author, the publisher, publicist, or a third party. I am honest in my reviews, meaning the fact I received the book for free does not alter the rating I give it. 

Sunday, September 13, 2020

Try Not to Die: In Brightside, Mark Tullius

Try Not to Die: In Brightside, 2.5/5


Pages:
242
Book Number: 1.5 of 2
Genre: Choose Your Own Adventure, Thriller, Adventure

Summary by Author: More than two dozen ways to die.

Just one correct path.

Do you have what it takes to survive?

Brightside is a beautiful mountain town blanketed by snow. Towering fences create a stark contrast to the serenity that appears on the surface. Your only crime is telepathy, yet your stay here is permanent. Your fate has been determined by society's fears.

The outlook is bleak unless you manage to become part of the escape that’s about to go down.

Watch your back, choose wisely, and be careful who you trust.

Good luck getting out of Brightside in this interactive novel.

Opinions: In my opinion, Try Not to Die: In Brightside was precisely average. The plot was engaging, but not electrifying. The characters were consistent, but not relatable. The themes were existent, but not resonating. Although I had a blast flicking through the book to choose my own adventure, I did not gain anything from reading this nor am I counting down the days until the next book releases. There's not much else to say; Try Not to Die: In Brightside fell just short of my expectations.

My Favourite Thing: I appreciate Tullius' dedication and passion for his "Try Not to Die" series. As a writer myself, I understand how difficult writing choose-your-own-adventure stories can be. Despite this, he never confused paths, misplaced information, or forgot a character's mission! I definitely appreciate that, however uninterested in the book I was, he did an excellent job creating a credible and flowing story.
My Least Favourite Thing: That said, Tullius cheated in writing a choose-your-own-adventure book. Readers are supposed to choose a new path at every crossroad the author provides and end up at one of the multiple conclusions. Rather, Tullius provided two choices: the right one, which allowed you to continue the story, and the wrong one, which forced you to reread a chapter and choose the correct choice. There were no paths, only obstacles. This was irritating and very restricting, which is the opposite of the book's intent! 

Total Rating: PG-12
Language: PG-13
Adult Content: PG
Violence: PG-13

Recommended For and Similar Reads: Try Not to Die: In Brightside is an intense and complex read for fans of choose-your-own adventure stories looking for a bit more structure in their books. If you've watched "Bandersnatch" or played Dungeons and Dragons, you should try Tullius' "Try Not to Die" series!


Publisher: Vincere Press
Edition: Audiobook
Publication Date: February 2020
ASIN: B082DBMDZF
Per FTC regulations, please know that I received this title for free for review from the original author, the publisher, publicist, or a third party. I am honest in my reviews, meaning the fact I received the book for free does not alter the rating I give it. 

Saturday, September 12, 2020

The P.A.N. by Jenny Hickman

The P.A.N., 5/5

Pages: 284
Book Number: 1 of 1
Genre: YA, Science Fiction, Fantasy, Retelling

Summary by Author: Since her parents were killed, Vivienne has always felt ungrounded, shuffled through the foster care system. Just when liberation finally seems possible—days before her eighteenth birthday—Vivienne is hospitalized with symptoms no one can explain. The doctors may be puzzled, but Deacon, her mysterious new friend, claims she has an active Nevergene. His far-fetched diagnosis comes with a warning: she is about to become an involuntary test subject for Humanitarian Organization for Order and Knowledge—or H.O.O.K. Vivienne can either escape to Neverland's Kensington Academy and learn to fly (Did he really just say fly?) or risk sticking around to become a human lab rat. But accepting a place among The P.A.N. means Vivienne must abandon her life and foster family to safeguard their secrets and hide in Neverland's shadows... forever.

Opinions: What a panstatic book! In all seriousness, The P.A.N. is easily one of my favourite books of all time thanks to Hickman's extensive creativity and imagination. Even elements that are normally monotonous in other books introduced an element of excitement in this one, such as the writing style and character backgrounds. I quickly picked up on the "Peter Pan" vibes and fell in love with Vivienne, our protagonist who was bound to embark on a physical and spiritual journey surrounding decisions and destinies. Something I adore about The P.A.N. is the vast expanse of plots: readers will sympathise with Vivienne when she leaves the family she just joined, fall in love with all of the boys she meets (Deacon!), tremble on the edge of our seats when H.O.O.K. arrives, and tingle with excitement whenever a new scientific breakthrough is explained. Readers of all genres will enjoy something from, if not all of The P.A.N.

My Favourite Thing: I absolutely ADORE the creativity of The P.A.N. - Hickman did a beautiful job taking an SFF idea and including science to make the magic tangible and closer to readers than they could ever imagine. The abbreviations held much more significance to me than their full titles; they symbolised nostalgia and growing up, a central theme of the book that I was able to reflect on. When I was younger, I fawned over Peter Pan and his immortality. Now, older and more intelligent, I fawn over the science of Peter's immortality and the controversy surrounding it. Hickman won my unconditional love through the themes about aging, maturing, and choosing your future depicted by Vivienne's journey into Neverland's Academy.
My Least Favourite Thing: In my opinion, the only "fault" I picked up on while reading The P.A.N. was the introduction: it was a bit cliche! A generic character finds out she has magical abilities and suddenly a whole new world is introduced to her. However, this cliche did not effect my reading experience!

Total Rating: PG-12
Language: PG-12
Adult Content: PG-12
Violence: PG-12

Recommended For and Similar Reads: The P.A.N. is a fresh and exhilarating retelling of the beloved Peter Pan by J M Barrie. Perfect for fans of science and action alike, The P.A.N. will impress any teenager looking for a scandalous chase and swoon-worthy protagonists ready to make a difference in their lives! Similar reads are Second Star by J M Sullivan, Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson, Unhooked by Lisa Maxwell, and Stars by Colleen Oakes!


Publisher: Midnight Tide
Edition: Kindle
Publication Date: 1 September, 2020
ASIN: B089HLWV1M
Per FTC regulations, please know that I received this title for free for review from the original author, the publisher, publicist, or a third party. I am honest in my reviews, meaning the fact I received the book for free does not alter the rating I give it. 

Tuesday, September 8, 2020

Cover Reveal: Ragnarok Unwound by Kristin Jacques

Cover Reveal: Ragnarok Unwound by Kristin Jacques



Title: Ragnarok Unwound
Author: Kristin Jacques
Genre: NA Fantasy
Publisher: Midnight Tide Publishing 
Publication Date: October 7, 2020




Summary

Prophecies don't untangle themselves.

Just ask Ikepela Ives, whose estranged mother left her with the power to unravel the binding threads of fate. Stuck with immortal power in a mortal body, Ives has turned her back on the duty she never wanted.

But it turns out she can’t run from her fate forever, not now that Ragnarok has been set in motion and the god at the center of that tangled mess has gone missing. With a ragtag group of companions—including a brownie, a Valkyrie, and the goddess of death herself—Ives embarks on her first official mission as Fate Cipher—to save the world from doomsday.

Nothing she can't handle. Right?



Buy link - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08HDJR8MM

Goodreads - https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/41146916



Tuesday, August 25, 2020

The History of Everything in 32 Pages, Anna Claybourne

The History of Everything in 32 Pages, 2/5

Pages: 32
Book Number: 1 of 1
Genre: Nonfiction, Children's

Summary by Author: In the beginning, about 13.8 billion years ago, the Universe started with a bang. Travel through time and space to learn how the world has evolved from the Big Bang onwards!

From the creation of the stars, through the evolution of plants and animals, the dawn of the dinosaurs, and on towards the first humans, early civilizations, empires and technology, this incredible book will take you through the history of, well, everything!

The History of Everything in 32 Pages is a visual guide to "everything" – from the formation of the solar system, right up to the modern day.

Fourteen exciting double-page spreads draw you into a world of discovery. Each fascinating scene depicts a key development in life on earth, with colorful and engaging illustrations and packed with interesting facts and figures.

The History of Everything in 32 Pages takes you through the ages in a compact and concise way, covering a huge-ranging subject in just one book! A fun and accessible guide to the history of the universe, this book is suitable for children aged 7 and above.

Anna Claybourne is a children's author who has written non-fiction books on a wide variety of topics, including science and technology, wildlife and history.

Opinions: I love to learn but tire quickly when exploring the depths of science and history. In order to keep my mind active but take a break from revising for exams, I often pick up children's books because they are simple, fresh, and easy-to-read! I admit to having had high expectations for The History of Everything in 32 Pages, but even if my expectations were lower, I'm afraid they still wouldn't have been met. The primary reason why The History of Everything in 32 Pages was so disappointing in my eyes is the lack of content! Of course, you can't expect an encyclopedia to be reduced to 32 pages, but Claybourne provided too little information about too many topics; I would've preferred more depth and context in fewer subjects. With such a shallow bank of knowledge, young readers might find it difficult to engage with any of the historical events and therefore take away anything from the book. The only reason I enjoyed The History of Everything in 32 Pages enough to award it 2 stars is because I have lots of background knowledge on the topics discussed, meaning the content made sense. Back to the idea of not expecting an encyclopedia, the title of the book is misleading. I truly hope no parent buys this book assuming their child will become a genius after reading it, but I did hope to hear more about man-made history, such as war, religion, music, and education. "Everything" is is a hyperbole and "32 pages" is a meaningless tactic to engage readers. What's the point of a short children's nonfiction book that doesn't teach anything? I'm positive all kids and parents would prefer a longer and more studious book, even if it doesn't have such a catchy and fun title. All in all, The History of Everything in 32 Pages wasn't a wasted read, but I would not recommend it to young readers looking for an introduction to the history of space, dinosaurs, evolution, and civilization. 

Total Rating: G
Language: G
Adult Content: G
Violence: G

Recommended For and Similar Reads: The History of Everything in 32 Pages is a summary of dozens of useful and exciting topics! If you are interested in increasing your background knowledge about the universe, dinosaurs, and evolution, I fully recommend this book to you. However, it provides small amounts of information over many topics, meaning it shouldn't be used as an introductory book! Similar reads are You and Your Strange Brain by Clive Gifford, The Mysteries of the Universe by Clive Gifford, and Fake News by Tom Jackson. 



Publisher: Laurence King Publishing
Edition: Kindle
Publication Date: 6 October, 2020
ISBN: 1786276844
Per FTC regulations, please know that I received this title for free for review from the original author, the publisher, publicist, or a third party. I am honest in my reviews, meaning the fact I received the book for free does not alter the rating I give it. 

Disclaimer: there are statements in this review that are my opinions. If you disagree, feel free to ignore me!

Friday, August 21, 2020

Book Blitz: Being Alert by Charlie Laidlaw

BeingAlert

Book Blitz: BEING ALERT by Charlie Laidlaw

Happy publication day to author Charlie Laidlaw! Today marks the release of searing satire, Being Alert, and I have a sneak peek for you as well as a chance to win a digital copy of the book!

Being Alert! cover

Title: Being Alert
Author: Charlie Laidlaw
Publication Date: August 21st, 2020
Genre: Satire


Summary
The book, which begins in January 2020, follows in a long tradition of British satire, as the British prime minister, Winston Spragg, first learns about a new virus that seems to be centred in a city in China that nobody has heard of. The book populates Downing Street and Whitehall with an inept prime minister presiding over a dysfunctional government as it deals with an existential threat that rapidly becomes a national crisis. It remains true to the timeline of Covid-19 and the government’s response to it, including its failure to lock down sooner, secure adequate supplies of protective equipment or protect the care sector. Like satires before it, the book uses humour to paint an uncomfortable picture of a government in crisis, and seemingly as concerned about justifying itself as working to suppress the virus. As the book progresses, with a mounting death toll, I hope the book strikes a changing balance as both a month-by-month narrative about the virus and a comedy to mirror unfolding events. As the country emerges into a new normal, the country will inevitably want to know why, per head of population, we have suffered worse than any other European country. Being Alert! provides the perfect outlet, not just to ask very real questions of government but to use humour as a satirical and healing tool. 



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Excerpt
Comings and Goings
In late February, according to a Sunday Times report, at a private event, the Prime Minister’s chief advisor outlined the government’s strategy at the time and which was summarised by someone present as ‘herd immunity, protect the economy, and if that means some pensioners die, too bad.’
In early March, the Prime Minister told the nation that, while the virus was likely to become a more significant problem, ‘this country is very, very well prepared. However, the final sentence of his message didn’t appear on his official Twitter page: “I wish to stress that, at the moment, it is very important that people consider that they should, as far as possible, go about business as usual.’ By and large, Derek Goings was both universally loathed and feared. It was assumed that he either had access to supernatural forces or was, in fact, one of the Undead. Even the Archbishop of Westminster would cross himself when the two met, which was rarely – at the archbishop’s request. Partly, he was loathed because of his role as the PM’s chief advisor, with almost permanent access to the Prime Minister’s ear. Partly, it was also because the PM usually did what his advisor told him to do, and that this was somehow undemocratic. Partly, too, it was because he smelled of sulphur. Nobody could therefore understand how he was married, shared a marital bed and had fathered a child. However, the sceptics pointed out, only his marriage was a matter of record. Whether he slept with his wife, and who the father of his child was, were grey areas best not explored. Derek, his critics often complained, although never to his face or to his few friends, had somehow appeared from nowhere. One minute, nobody had ever heard of him; the next minute, his name, and the smell of the underworld, was everywhere. Derek’s great achievement, agreed on by friends and foes, was to have leaped successfully onto the political stage without ever having done anything useful. Okay, he had once helped a relative run a nightclub in the north of England, and never mind that it had been voted the second-worst in Europe. (The worst subsequently burned down, accidentally or on purpose, handing the crown to Derek’s relative). Okay, he had also tried to start an airline in either Prague or Moscow (nobody was entirely sure which) but that hadn’t got off the ground, either literally or metaphorically. Having therefore done nothing of note, he then appeared as if in a puff of black and menacing smoke on the Westminster stage, immediately making enemies of virtually everyone. However, having enemies only seemed to increase his powers because, say what you might about him, he did get things done. In a Whitehall dominated by men in grey suits, and all either from Oxbridge or interbred, the proper way to get things done had always been the old-fashioned way. After all, the British way was the traditional way; decisions were made over Pimm’s at Wimbledon; gin and tonics at Twickenham, and whatever was available at Henley. Decisions were rarely made in Whitehall, where they were supposed to be made. Derek, of course, thought otherwise, facing up to the grey suits in either jeans or tracksuit, with a mission to bring the British Civil Service at least into the 20th century. Perhaps, even for him, the 21st century was too big a task, at least for now. This wrecking-ball of a man, with his glittering career in night-time entertainment and air travel, therefore brought him into endless conflict with the mandarins who were supposed to be running the country. Derek’s meteoric rise through the government’s advisory ranks was extraordinary; so too the growth of his reputation as someone who could end a political career with the merest nod of his head. He was, it was agreed, either Machiavellian or Svengalian – generally the former, because few civil servants or politicians had ever read a 19th century novel, and therefore didn’t quite know who Svengali was. Kevin Kock was, of course, all too aware of the PM’s advisor, having been in numerous meetings with him and having seen how even the most confident minister could be brought to his or, sometimes, her knees with a cursory glance. It was therefore with alarm bordering on panic that he received the news from his Permanent Secretary that Derek Goings was on his way round for a ‘bit of a chin-wag.’ “But I’m busy,” he’d squeaked to Sir Roger. “No, you’re not. I manage your diary, Minister.” The Health Secretary could have said that he had a completely separate diary in which he, as Health Secretary, kept his Top Secret meetings; or that he was ill; or could have chosen from any one of the many excuses that he’d used over the years, mostly to cover up his blood and germ phobias. Now, of course, thanks to his Permanent Secretary, his alien life-form phobia because, in his mind, Covid-19 was now sentient and possibly intelligent – like a jellyfish, but with a more deadly sting. He then spent some minutes spraying his office with air freshener and disinfectant, and covering his desk with large piles of files. He even undid the top button of his shirt to demonstrate his dedication to the British people except, of course, Derek Goings. His arrival was signalled, not by a deferential knock on his office door or a bleep from his internal phone, but by the smell of decay. The Health Secretary closed his eyes for just a moment and took several deep breaths only to find, when he opened his eyes again, that the PM’s advisor was already standing on the other side of his desk. “Derek, good gracious! How nice to see you!” The Health Secretary automatically stuck out a hand, before realising that Derek Goings still had both hands in the pockets of his jeans. Only the Prime Minister was still shaking everyone’s hand, particularly on hospital visits. The PM’s advisor sat in the chair opposite and sniffed the air. “Very wise,” he remarked. “As Health Secretary, it’s good to see that you’re setting an example.” “Am I?” “You can’t be too careful, Minister, because you never know who might be harbouring infection. Sterilising your office is possibly or probably a good thing.” The advisor’s eyes, hidden behind dark glasses, were black discs. His soft voice carried with it both menace and good hygienic advice. “Am I to assume that you’re here for a reason?” the Health Secretary asked, hoping to sound business-like and brusque, having rehearsed this opening line as he sprayed the room. “Because I am, as I’m sure you are, rather busy.” “No, you’re not, Health Secretary. I looked at your diary.” “Sir Roger had no right….” “I have every right, Minister.” Before Kevin could think of a suitably outraged reply, there was a soft knock on the door and Sir Roger himself appeared, carrying a notebook. Without asking, he took the other available seat next to Derek and neatly crossed his legs. “I am here, Minister, to determine whether this country is prepared.” The PM’s advisor’s voice was barely a whisper. “After all, we are now beginning to see the first Covid-19 fatalities on British soil.” “I did know that, Derek.” “We will certainly see more fatalities, Minister, which brings me neatly to the reason why I am here. I merely wish to determine if you have made adequate preparations. Particularly the provision of personal protective equipment.” This was a question that the Health Secretary, even panic-stricken, had foreseen. “Of course, Derek. We have, for example, a reserve of over one billion items of PPE. One billion, Derek.” The Health Secretary smiled brightly at his nemesis on the other side of the desk, using the advisor’s first name twice in the space of a few seconds, a useful trick that he’d learned on some management course he’d attended. Sir Roger picked imaginary spots of dust from his immaculate trousers and looked out the window. “Yet, I am led to believe, Minister, that this figure includes things like cleaning products, waste bags, detergents and paper towels,” said the advisor, still in his stage whisper. “Does it?” replied Kevin. “I mean, yes it does. At least, possibly it does. But a billion is still rather a lot of stuff, I’m sure you would agree.” “Not necessarily,” said the advisor. “For example, your inventory lists 547 million protective gloves.” “So?” “So, a more accurate figure would be 273.5 million pairs of gloves, or am I missing something?” “Pairs of gloves?” “Your inventory lists each glove separately.” The Health Secretary looked wildly at his Permanent Secretary, who merely shrugged. “I did send you the inventory last year, Minister. Which you approved,” he added with a smile. “Well, you know what they say, Derek.” “No, I don’t know what they say, Minister.” “That there are only three kinds of people in the world. Those who can count, and those who can’t.” The Health Secretary gave a small laugh, which wasn’t echoed from across the table. “I hardly think that this is a time for levity, Minister.” The smell of sulphur had risen several notches, and a green vapour seemed to be filling the room. “I also just hope the media don’t get hold of the story. I dread to think what Panorama would make of it.” “I’m sure they won’t, Derek.” “However, if things deteriorate, PPE will get eaten up pretty quickly,” said the advisor, whose eyes had never left Kevin’s face, or maybe they had because, behind dark glasses, he could be looking anywhere. “We are, of course, setting up new procurement channels to ensure against any and every contingency, aren’t we, Sir Roger?” His Permanent Secretary shifted uncomfortably in his seat. “Of course, Minister,” and then actually wrote something in his notebook. “Very well, then I will assume that you have the needs of the health service and its gallant staff fully covered. But what about the care sector?” “What about the care sector?” asked the Health Secretary. The advisor was quiet for a moment. “Well, you are the person responsible for it.” “What!” Kevin almost pushed himself upright. “You are, as I assume you must realise, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care.” “What!” Sir Roger cleared his throat. “I did send you a memo, Minister.”


Available on Amazon US and Amazon UK 




About the Author
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I was born in Paisley, central Scotland, which wasn’t my fault. That week, Eddie Calvert with Norrie Paramor and his Orchestra were Top of the Pops, with Oh, Mein Papa, as sung by a young German woman remembering her once-famous clown father. That gives a clue to my age, not my musical taste. I was brought up in the west of Scotland and graduated from the University of Edinburgh. I still have the scroll, but it’s in Latin, so it could say anything. I then worked briefly as a street actor, baby photographer, puppeteer and restaurant dogsbody before becoming a journalist. I started in Glasgow and ended up in London, covering news, features and politics. I interviewed motorbike ace Barry Sheene, Noel Edmonds threatened me with legal action and, because of a bureaucratic muddle, I was ordered out of Greece. I then took a year to travel round the world, visiting 19 countries. Highlights included being threatened by a man with a gun in Dubai, being given an armed bodyguard by the PLO in Beirut (not the same person with a gun), and visiting Robert Louis Stevenson’s grave in Samoa. What I did for the rest of the year I can’t quite remember Surprisingly, I was approached by a government agency to work in intelligence, which just shows how shoddy government recruitment was back then. However, it turned out to be very boring and I don’t like vodka martini. Craving excitement and adventure, I ended up as a PR consultant, which is the fate of all journalists who haven’t won a Pulitzer Prize, and I’ve still to listen to Oh, Mein Papa. I am married with two grown-up children and live in central Scotland. And that’s about it.



Find Charlie Laidlaw



Giveaway
Win a digital copy of Being Alert in format of choice! Giveaway will be open from today until August 24th. Enter here: a Rafflecopter giveaway



  Book Blitz Organized By:
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  R&R Book Tours

Book Blitz: Rainbow by Verde Arzu

Rainbow copy

Book Blitz: RAINBOW by Verde Arzu


Welcome to my stop on the Rainbow blog tour!  Read on for book details, an excerpt AND a chance to win a signed copy of the book

Title: Rainbow
Author: Verde Arzu
Publication Date: December 2019
Genre: LGBTQ/ Black Fiction/ Novella



Summary
Taylor has room for exactly two things in her life: improving her performance as a college basketball player and maintaining the grades she needs to stay on the team and someday play in the WNBA. But when she meets the beautiful and confident Melony, Taylor’s whole way of life is called into question. RAINBOW is a coming-of-age queer love story with a Love Jones kind of vibe. It’s the first of many queer black novellas by the author Verde Arzu.


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Excerpt 3



Available on Amazon 




Giveaway
You have a chance to win a print copy of Rainbow, signed by the author! Just click the following link to enter! a Rafflecopter giveaway 


 About the Author
Author Pic 

Verde Arzu is a passionate, middle school special education teacher. She graduated from Fisk University, a historically black college and university (HBCU) located in Nashville, TN. There she earned a B.A in History. Her love for teaching pushed her to go on to graduate school where she earned a Master of Science in Special Education from National University. Verde is not only a teacher but an advocate working to ensure equity for students of color, especially those with learning disabilities. Verde is excitedly working toward completing a post-baccalaureate certificate in writing from UC Berkeley Extension. Upon completion of the program, she plans to continue to publish novellas, short love stories, centered on realistic lesbian and queer relationships. Verde recalls writing her first piece of fiction as a kid on the front stoop of her two-flat home on the south side of Chicago. She traces her passion for writing stories about African American queer characters from her desire to see more characters’ voices she can relate to. A native Chicagoan, she currently resides in Northern California with her beautiful wife and two furry, four-legged children, Bob and Marley. She enjoys reading books written by African Americans—with her favorite genre being romance. She is a die heart Chicago sports fan. In her free time, she enjoys playing tennis, basketball, biking, binge-watching her favorite TV shows, and of course, cuddling up with a good book!


Find Verde Arzu




Blog Tour Schedule
August 17th
Reads & Reels (Spotlight) http://readsandreels.com
Phoebe’s Randoms (Review) https://phoebesrandoms.wordpress.com/
The Faerie Review (Review) http://www.thefaeriereview.com
Purple Shelf Club (Review) https://www.purpleshelfclub.com/
I Smell Sheep (Spotlight) http://www.ismellsheep.com/

August 18th
B is for Book Review (Interview) https://bforbookreview.wordpress.com
Lecari Live (Review) http://www.lecari.co.uk
Book Dragons Not Worms (Spotlight) https://bookdragonsnotworms.blogspot.com/?m=1
Bookish Lifetime (Spotlight) http://www.bookishlifetime.wordpress.com

August 19th
Cup of Toast (Interview) https://cupoftoast.co.uk
Dash Fan Book Reviews (Review) https://dashfan81.blogspot.com/
Jessica Belmont (Review) https://jessicabelmont.wordpress.com/
Breakeven Books (Spotlight) https://breakevenbooks.com

August 20th

August 21st
Bookish Ends (Review) https://www.bookishends.com/
Misty’s Book Space (Review) http://mistysbookspace.wordpress.com
Rajiv’s Book Reviews (Review) https://www.rajivsreviews.com/
It’s a Novel Life (Spotlight) https://lifesanovelty.blogspot.com/
Sophril Reads (Spotlight) http://sophrilreads.wordpress.com


Blog Tour Organized By:
R&R Button
  R&R Book Tours