Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Giveaway: Silence by Becca Fitzpatrick

Chirenjenzie is so excited to be a part of the Leap into Books giveaway hosted by I Am a Reader, Not a Writer and Jinky is Reading! Remember, click on the pic at the top of the page to find other blogs that are joining in the fun! For this giveaway, we've chosen to offer the critically acclaimed third book in Becca Fitzpatrick's Hush, Hush series, Silence

For a chance to win, simply follow the directions on the Rafflecopter! Good luck and thanks for stopping by!

Fitzpatrick delivers the breathtaking conclusion to the "New York Times"-bestselling Hush, Hush saga.
The noise between Patch and Nora is gone. They’ve overcome the secrets riddled in Patch’s dark past ... bridged two irreconcilable worlds ... faced heart-wrenching tests of betrayal, loyalty, and trust ... and all for a love that will transcend the boundary between heaven and earth. Armed with nothing but their absolute faith in each other, Patch and Nora enter a desperate fight to stop a villain who holds the power to shatter everything they’ve worked for—and their love—forever. 

Silence (Hush, Hush #3) -- Becca Fitzpatrick

Thursday, February 23, 2012

YA Paranormal Activity Giveaway!

Time for this month's giveaway!
Chirenjenzie is partial to paranormal, and so we were so excited to be a part of this giveaway! Remember, click on the pic at the top of the page to find other blogs that are joining in the fun! This month we've chosen PC Cast's Marked to share!

The House of Night series is set in a world very much like our own, except in 16-year-old Zoey Redbird's world, vampyres have always existed.  In this first book in the series, Zoey enters the House of Night, a school where, after having undergone the Change, she will train to become an adult vampire -- that is, if she makes it through the Change.  Not all of those who are chosen do.  It's tough to begin a new life, away from her parents and friends, and on top of that, Zoey finds she is no average fledgling.  She has been Marked as special by the vampyre Goddess, Nyx.  But she is not the only fledgling at the House of Night with special powers.  When she discovers that the leader of the Dark Daughters, the school's most elite club, is misusing her Goddess-given gifts, Zoey must look deep within herself for the courage to embrace her destiny--with a little help from her new vampyre friends.

I love P.C. Cast's voicing in this one! If you'd like a chance to win the copy, just fill out the Rafflecopter! And thanks for "hopping" by!

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Sunday, February 19, 2012

The Devil Heats up Winter!

The Devil in Winter

Synopsis: A devil's bargain
Easily the shyest Wallflower, Evangeline Jenner stands to become the wealthiest, once her inheritance comes due. Because she must first escape the clutches of her unscrupulous relatives, Evie has approached the rake Viscount St. Vincent with a most outrageous proposition: marriage!
Sebastian's reputation is so dangerous that thirty seconds alone with him will ruin any maiden's good name. Still, this bewitching chit appeared, unchaperoned, on his doorstep to offer her hand. Certainly an aristocrat with a fine eye for beauty could do far worse.
But Evie's proposal comes with a condition: no lovemaking after their wedding night. She will never become just another of the dashing libertine's callously discarded broken hearts -- which means Sebastian will simply have to work harder at his seductions...or perhaps surrender his own heart for the very first time in the name of true love.

My Review:
This is by far my favorite in the series! I know, I know. I said that about Lillian's story, but this time I really mean it!

Evie Jenner is a great character, but what I love most is the character's growth. In the previous books, Evie was portrayed as a shy, stuttering girl who really didn't have much of a backbone. But page one of The Devil in Winter we learn that Kleypas has been holding out on us. Evie not only has a backbone, but one made of steel. She's been through hell and back has survived on sheer force of will. I love that by the end of the story, she brings St. Vincent to his knees (literally :-).

Undoubtedly St. Vincent is one of the best characters I've ever read. Kleypas is a master of character development, and she shines with St. Vincent! Every bit of his dialogue is tempered with a slow, lazy cynical flavor. His been-there-done-that attitude lets the reader know right away that he has seen it all. There is nothing in or out of the bedroom that he hasn't experienced, and certainly nothing that would interest his lackadaisical way of life. But then Evie storms into his home, and, whether he likes it or not, she completely changes him in a way he never imagined. 

The only thing that bothered me about the book was the way Kleypas refers to Cam (who is a main character in her Hathaway series). Cam is 25 or so, and she keeps referring to him as "a boy". Not only did it pull me out of the story, it messed with my image of Cam (who is a tall, gorgeous horse of a Rom with dark hair, and tanned skin). He's one of my favorite leads in all of her historical work, and I'm afraid to re-read Mine till Midnight because I don't want to look at Cam differently. I like him just the way his, thank you very much! I definitely don't want to see him as a "boy". :-) 

The Cam issue did nothing to hinder my love of the story though, and so I have to give another fantastic 5-star review for the Kleypas Wallflower series!
Posted by: Chi

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Thanks isn't enough!

To everyone who participated in the first annual Lovapalooza, we give a heart-felt thanks! What an incredible event! The giveaways were a tremendous success, and it wouldn't have been possible without you!

Speaking of giveaways, we have several coming up in the upcoming weeks (check the sidebar for details). Not only that, but we plan to have a few special posts so be sure to check back!

Again, from all of the Chirenjenzie authors, we truly appreciate your kindness and support!

(PS. Thanks so much Awkward Samantha for the cool GIF)

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Lovapalooza is Here!!!

In honor Valentine's Day, Hope Collier, LK Gardner-Griffie, and Elizabeth Isaacs  are giving away their Kindle books for FREE. Listed below are the descriptions! Just click on the book's picture and it'll take to you Amazon ... easy as pie! :-)

BUT THAT'S NOT ALL!!! Scroll down and enter to win two more amazing ebooks by Kristie Cook and Jessie Harrell! 

Kristie's Promise took first place in the 2010 Royal Palm Literary Award (by Florida Writer's Association), and Jessie's Destined is currently 2nd in Amazon's Greek Mythology List!

I think ole Saint Valentine would be happy about all the love we're sharing, don't you? :-)

Books offered for FREE

If Nora Johnson hadn't been on campus that day she would have never known her true destiny. Helping her friends move into the dorm that she wanted to call home, Nora accidentally collides with mysterious stranger, Gavin Frey. His very first touch sends flames through her heart. The world seems different-something within her has changed.
Nora tries to resume her mundane life, but she is now consumed with the one whose very presence ignited her soul, the one with eyes of emerald. Nora soon learns that an energy buried deep within has been unleashed. She now wields unimaginable power and has become Gavin's source, his strength.
Her newfound joy is shaken when she discovers that Gavin is not who he appears to be and she has been thrust in the middle of a war of mythical proportions. Negativity has allowed all things evil to flourish, the earth is under siege. The fate of creation hinges on the power within her heart. Will she be strong enough to survive?

  When tragedy strikes, seventeen year-old Ashton Blake sets out on a cross-country road trip, leaving the comforts of Malibu for the mountains of Kentucky. Along the way, she encounters Gabe Willoughby—the mysterious drifter with eyes like the sea and a knowing smile. Getting to know Gabe raises questions about her past. But no secret can be buried forever, and Ashton soon finds herself in a world where water is air and myth becomes reality.

Just as Ashton comes to accept her newfound heritage, she’s summoned to fulfill a treaty laid down centuries before — a treaty that will divide her love and test her loyalty. In the end, her future isn’t her biggest concern, her humanity is. To run may mean war, but is she strong enough to stay?

What do Sunday afternoon court proceedings, cheerleader tryouts, and a book burning have in common? Katie McCabe is back in action.

After her nemesis Harvey is found guilty and sentenced to community service, Katie wants to believe her troubles are over, but Harvey won’t rest until he gets revenge. When blackmail rears its ugly head, she’s caught between friends and enemies putting her growing relationship with Tom at stake. Books go up in flames and Katie’s world rains down in tatters.

Enter to Win!!!

When Psyche receives a prophecy gone horribly wrong, she learns that even the most beautiful girl in Greece can have a hideous future. Her fate? Fall in love with the one creature even the gods fear.

As she feels herself slipping closer into the arms of the prophecy, Psyche must choose between the terrifyingly tender touch she feels almost powerless to resist and the one constant she's come to expect out of life: you cannot escape what is destined.

Destined is a fresh and heartachingly romantic retelling of the Cupid & Psyche myth from debut novelist, Jessie Harrell.

Alexis Ames has a life full of promise…but not all promises can be kept.
When Alexis Ames is attacked by creatures that can’t be real, she decides it’s time she learns who she really is, with or without the help of her mother, who guards their family’s secrets closely. After meeting the inhumanly attractive, multi-talented Tristan Knight, however, Alexis retreats behind her fa├žade of normalcy…until she discovers he’s not exactly normal either. Then their secrets begin to unravel.
Their union brings hope and promise to her family’s secret society, the Angels’ army, and to the future of mankind. But it also incites a dangerous pursuit by the enemy – Satan’s minions and Tristan’s creators. After all, Alexis and Tristan are a match made in Heaven and in Hell.

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Thursday, February 9, 2012

Review: Nevermore by Kelly Creagh

From Goodreads
Cheerleader Isobel Lanley is horrified when she is paired with Varen Nethers for an English project, which is due—so unfair—on the day of the rival game. Cold and aloof, sardonic and sharp-tongued, Varen makes it clear he’d rather not have anything to do with her either. But when Isobel discovers strange writing in his journal, she can’t help but give this enigmatic boy with the piercing eyes another look.

Soon, Isobel finds herself making excuses to be with Varen. Steadily pulled away from her friends and her possessive boyfriend, Isobel ventures deeper and deeper into the dream world Varen has created through the pages of his notebook, a realm where the terrifying stories of Edgar Allan Poe come to life.

As her world begins to unravel around her, Isobel discovers that dreams, like words, hold more power than she ever imagined, and that the most frightening realities are those of the mind. Now she must find a way to reach Varen before he is consumed by the shadows of his own nightmares.

Wow. That's the best the way to sum up Nevermore by Kentucky author Kelly Creagh. I met Kelly at a multi-author signing in Louisville. At the time, I'd seen Nevermore, but never really paid attention to it. It wasn't until I saw the Raven on the shelf and the Edgar Allan Poe trinkets scattered around the table that I realized the title was actually associated with Poe himself. It was at this point, my heart did a little dance.

Okay, the story starts out with an interesting (and very well written) prologue. I know, I know. God forbid there's a prologue! It's necessary, I assure you. In the case of this book, it encouraged me to read it! Creagh introduces us to Poe here in such a cool way. She brings in some little known facts about his (very real) untimely death and uses them as the basis of the story.

The first chapter soon starts off with the cheerleader Isobel Lanley being paired up for a writing project with goth-boy Varen Nethers ... much to jock-guy, quarterback boyfriend's dismay. I'll admit it. I had more than a moment's pause about the cheerleader/goth/jock thing. I don't like cheerleader/goth/jock stories, because more often than not, they end up being so cliche. However, cliche can also be defined by the quiet nerdy girl who likes to read or the misunderstood nobody boy who comes from the wrong side of the tracks. It's all a matter of plot and perspective, how unique the STORY is, and how WELL is it WRITTEN.

There's a lot of awesomeness to cover in this one, so I'm going to categorize here.


Varen. Varen is dark and brooding at first. I wondered if Miss Author-pants could pull it off without succumbing to the Count Gothica experience we've all had in YA books. Let's face it, tortured and brooding is tough to pull off these days. Creagh nailed it! While Varen has a very dark side to him, he has good reason, and Creagh defines it beautifully without going over the top. Her ability to paint the perfect picture of him and his emotion is enviable. I think he comes across exactly how she intended, and not as a woe-is-me emo kid.

Isobel. Isobel has her ups and downs in the story. On occasion, the moment kind of fell flat for me with her or an opportunity was missed for Isobel to shine. There were times when I really didn't like her in fact. Isobel let other people manipulate her because she wouldn't just put her foot down and stand up for the right thing. She overreacted in some situations and underacted in others. All in all, she was relatively wishy-washy in the beginning, but Varen's strong character and Creagh's beautiful writing kept me in the story. As the story progressed though, Isobel gained quite a bit of momentum, growing into the type of heroine I like to see: scared yet strong; flawed yet willing. I'm eager to see how her character develops in the sequel.

Secondary characters. Isobel's friends are a group of douche-canoes. I realize that's somewhat reminiscent of high school, but it took a while for Isobel to stand up to them, and they weren't even worth her time. When she did though, it felt real. Honestly, I could've done without the others. I'm not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing.

* I LOVED Gwen. I have to say she's one of the best YA characters I've ever read. Her personality is fabulous, and Creagh captured it in the most realistic way.
* Pinfeathers is quite interesting. I haven't quite figured him out yet. I really liked the way Creagh incorporated "those guys" into the story. I don't want to give anything away, but they're cool in a twisted kind of way.
* Reynolds, though not in the story as much as I would've liked, is superb. He's blurred somewhere between the good guy and bad guy. He has a job to do. While he doesn't want to hurt anyone, he looks out for the overall best interest.


I won't get into everything because I hate spoilers, and this one is hard not to spoil. I will say this, the plot was unique and riveting. The pace was perfect in an unusual way. There were times I was ready for it to move on, almost to skimming, but then it picked back up. Different readers have different points of "too fast/too slow". This one's on the fence, but paced just right for me!

The writing. Oh my gosh, the writing. I fell in love with the prologue and it continued throughout the entire book! Excellent writing is something insanely hard to come by. Most readers don't mind, but as a writer too, it's epically important to me. The descriptive writing is incredible, but not overdone. The sensory aspect is perfectly done, making me feel like I was there, which is tough considering the third person POV. I didn't feel like I was missing any emotion, any experience like I sometimes do with third person. Overall, the writing was impeccable.

Final Thoughts:

I've never read anything like Nevermore. It's based loosely on Poe's life and works. I'm a HUGE Poe fan, so I found this just freaking amazing! The story is definitely dark and very creepy, but it's eerily charming. I don't see it being an across-the-board success from a plot/genre point of view, but the gorgeous writing, a handful of fabulous characters, and the epic uniqueness guarantee a great read! I absolutely recommend to ages 15 and up.


Sunday, February 5, 2012

Review: The Dark Divine by Bree Despain

Grace Divine, daughter of the local pastor, always knew something terrible happened the night Daniel Kalbi disappeared--the night she found her brother Jude collapsed on the porch, covered in his own blood--but she has no idea what a truly monstrous secret that night held.

The memories her family has tried to bury resurface when Daniel returns, three years later, and enrolls in Grace and Jude's high school. Despite promising Jude she'll stay away, Grace cannot deny her attraction to Daniel's shocking artistic abilities, his way of getting her to look at the world from new angles, and the strange, hungry glint in his eyes.

The closer Grace gets to Daniel, the more she jeopardizes her life, as her actions stir resentment in Jude and drive him to embrace the ancient evil Daniel unleashed that horrific night. Grace must discover the truth behind the boy's dark secret...and the cure that can save the ones she loves. But she may have to lay down the ultimate sacrifice to do it--her soul.

Let me preface this by saying, I don't like negative reviews where people bash authors. It's unprofessional and flat out rude. When I don't like a story, it's nothing personal; it just means that particular book isn't for me.

I'll be honest on this one. It's the first book I ever laid down without finishing. I slogged through over 250 pages, and it never grabbed my attention. I'd hoped after all the glowing reviews, and the incredible cover, that it would live up to my expectations. Alas, it wasn't meant to be. Page after page held more rambling and lacked the oomph I desired. A few people told me if I'd continued, that's where the story really gets good. Don't get me wrong, I love me some build-up, but if you haven't reached that point in 250 + pages, it's futile.

The story begins with Grace Divine, the daughter of the local pastor. She works hard and has her priorities straight. Enter Daniel. Daniel is a friend from the past who mysteriously disappeared some years before.
Now he's back in school and back in Grace's life ... despite her family's wishes otherwise. Daniel is the bad-boy with a past. Nothing really exciting there and rather derivative.
Had I not known what the book was about, I wouldn't have suspected Daniel of being more than a troubled youth. Yeah, there are a couple of "hints" that he's more, but honestly, it's kind of boring. Grace is the good girl that falls for him. Still more stereo-typical plot line. Seeing as I didn't finish, I don't know where their relationship goes.  

The interaction between Grace and Daniel was kind of mundane. I would've liked to seen more chemistry or conflicting emotion that felt genuine. There were a lot of misused opportunities. The story would have had great potential (for me) if it had simply moved along faster. There were several paragraphs I skipped over because they didn't move the plot forward.

A (very) long story, short: It's all a-day-in-the-life-of... If you're going to live in someone's head that long, they'd better have a head worth living in. I'm giving it 2-stars, because I can't stand the thought of giving someone's work a 1-star. There were pieces here and there that were unique ... just not unique enough to overcome the other issues.
  For anyone who likes a deeper story, a character-driven plot or mystery and action, I don't recommend The Dark Divine.