Release Day: Right Kind of Mistake by Rebecca Thomas – Giveaway

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Welcome to Rebecca Thomas who is celebrating the release of her New Adult romance Right Kind of Mistake. Enter the Rafflecopter at the end of the post to win 1 of 5 beautiful Right Kind of Mistake necklaces or $10 Amazon Gift card.

11_9 rebecca thomas RKOM_coverHaylie Keene wants to put the past behind her and move on after her jock boyfriend cheats on her. Her friends convince her that a hook-up (or maybe a little revenge sex) is the best place to start. Except she’s steering clear of hockey players, as in, never ever again.

Alaska State all-star defenseman Cam Erickson is a calculated risk taker. He weighs the pros and cons and knows Haylie is a bad investment on so many levels, but something about her gets under his skin. And once he makes up his mind, he pulls out all the stops to make her his.

Haylie soon realizes that Cam’s quiet charm and unfaltering confidence is like a magnet she doesn’t want to refuse. Their chemistry is undeniable and maybe the rules she set up for herself are worth reconsidering.

11_9 rebecca thomas RightKindofMistake

About the Author: 11_9 Rebecca ThomasRebecca Thomas has a love-hate relationship with Alaska, where she lives with her bush pilot husband and two teenaged sons. When she’s not reading, writing, or playing board games, she’s cheering for her sons at their hockey games and tennis matches.

A reluctant reader as a child, Rebecca didn’t become interested in books until her teen years when she discovered historical romance. Now she loves all sub-genres of romance and can’t decide which one is her favorite.
Rebecca earned a bachelor’s degree in Education from the University of Alaska and she was employed in the airline industry for several years before working in her current position as a program manager in higher education.

Follow Rebecca on TwitterFacebookTumblr, and her website.

Enter to win a GC or a necklace – a Rafflecopter giveaway

Spirited Kat O’Shea

Spirited Kat O’Shea
Publisher: Leap Books
Genre: Action/Adventure, Paranormal, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Full Length (249 pgs)
Age Recommendation: 12+
Rating: 3.5 stars
Reviewed by Aloe

Haunted houses. Haunted hearts. And a past that refuses to die. . .

Leap Books summoned best-selling paranormal and dreadfully talented debut authors to conjure up Spirited, a haunting collection of 13 tales guaranteed to keep you up all night.

Get entombed in stories of Egyptian treasures, shudder at tales of malevolent spirits, and become enthralled with the adventures of witch-hunters, ghost seekers, and lost souls. From steampunk to cyberpunk, our collection spans past, present, and future hauntings. One story actually leaps off the page with 3D augmented reality. Go ahead. Turn the page if you dare. We won’t tell if you sleep with the light on. Because after all, there’s no rest for the wicked.

Go ahead. Turn the page if you dare. We won’t tell if you sleep with the light on. Because after all, there’s no rest for the wicked.

Are you ready to enter a world of spirits and take your chances? Not all of them are nice…

What caught my eye about this book was the fact that it was short stories by a variety of authors. I enjoy different writing styles and different plot concepts, so I was interested in seeing how they handled this central theme of ghosts.

The stories ranged from historical to science fiction, avenging spirits to kind spirits. Several stories focused on putting the ghosts to rest. Each author did a good job describing the setting and making this reader interested in their characters. The words flowed well and I enjoyed the read. However, I would like to have seen either more variety or perhaps a couple of more throughly fleshed out stories. It just seemed something was lacking.

Once I started reading this book, I didn’t want to stop. I went from story to story and each author gave me a short treat to read. There was a combination of scary and sweet in the collection. My personal favorites were the science fiction stories. They provided a different form of ghost story and even seemed a bit more believable because they were fantasy.

If you enjoy ghost stories, this is a nice selection that’s easy to read and doesn’t get too extreme at horror or romance. If you think you aren’t into ghost stories, this is a good way to sample them and see which types appeal to you. I’m sure you’ll find something to enjoy and then you’ll have opened a new genre to expand your reading. This collection has something for everyone.

Stakeout by Bonnie J. Doerr

Stakeout by Bonnie J. Doerr
Publisher: Leap Books
Genre: Contemporary, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Full Length (310 Pages)
Age Recommendation: 12+
Rating: 5 stars
Reviewed by Jasmine

How could Kenzie have predicted that a surreal encounter with an ancient sea turtle at a New York aquarium would propel her into peril in the Florida Keys?

A haunting promise compels Kenzie to save sea turtles by capturing the criminals who are robbing the nests. Fearless, wheelchair-bound Ana and savvy, troubled Angelo assist Kenzie in an undercover sting that grows increasingly complicated and treacherous. As problems compound, Kenzie fears losing her first romance, her mother’s trust, and her own life.

Stakeout includes notes on sea turtle conservation as well as on the Turtle Hospital in Marathon, Florida.

We have found the modern day Scooby gang! Only instead of ghost stories, these teens are solving environmental crimes and changing the world. Or at least they’re trying to change the world they live in.

Kenzie is a typical teenage girl who recently moved from New York City to the Florida Keys. She is becoming more independent and is learning how to push her boundaries. She’s also dealing with the divorce of her parents, and her father’s subsequent remarriage, as well as her mother’s new boyfriend. The family issues in this story serve well as a backdrop to the other problems and are handled admirably.

Kenzie also has a crush on Angelo, who’s portrayed so well, if I was that age, I probably would too. Her actions and reactions to events and circumstances throughout the story are very realistic for a girl of that age, from resenting mom’s new boyfriend to making rash decisions without considering the consequences. Salty, the dog, is her ever present companion and partner in crime. He’s the best friend every kid wants.

The secondary character of Ana is completely charming. I absolutely loved the way this girl is portrayed. She’s strong and independent and won’t allow anyone to do something for her that she can do herself. Ana is confined to a wheelchair, due to having spina bifida, but she doesn’t let that stop her from doing anything the other kids do. Having grown up with a grandmother in a wheelchair and a family friend with spina bifida, and knowing firsthand how uncomfortable kids can be around people who are different, it’s great to see this sort of thing included in the story.

As the mystery of who’s stealing the turtle eggs progresses, we see the characters of the colorful island people emerge. The author does a fantastic job of painting a picture of the Florida Keys and what life there is like. It really made me want to visit the Keys, even though it’s not an area I’ve ever previously had any interest in. I loved that the kids live in a place that makes them care about the environment and makes them want to make the adults care again, too.

The illustrations that are scattered throughout the book, along with the history added at the end about the art, add a lot to the story and serves to pull you deeper into the world of the Keys. It allows the kids to see what the different turtles being discussed look like as well as adding a fun element.

Part two in a series, Stakeout is a standalone read. It’s a great story for kids who are interested in environmental issues or who love animals. It’s also a great way to bring attention to these issues for others. A perfect summer read for any young teenager, boy or girl, this is a series that will get them hooked and keep them reading.

For the Love of Strangers by Jacqueline Horsfall

For the Love of Strangers by Jacqueline Horsfall
Publisher: Leap Books
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full Length (292 Pages)
Age Recommendation: 14+
Rating: 3.5 stars
Reviewed by Jasmine

Philoxenia. When the police call using this code word, 16-year-old Darya knows she will be sheltering strangers: women with missing teeth, dislocated jaws, black eyes-and stalking husbands.

Other strangers-nonhuman-seek Darya’s protection too, whispering from the depths of the forest in voices only she can hear. If she obeys the voices, she risks her adoptive mother’s rage, the taunts of a surly island boy, and the wrath of her community. If she refuses the voices, a primeval species faces extermination.

What if you discovered your birth fulfilled an ancient prophecy?

What if you were destined to save an entire wild species?

Would you heed the call?

You know the saying about how you can’t pick your family? Well, that’s not always true, especially for kids that have been adopted.

On the surface, Darya is a typical teenage girl on the verge of getting her license. She’s a strange contradiction of resenting her mother and wanting the warmth of her affection and approval. Adopted from Russia at a very young age, along with her little brother, she has a few, vague memories of her birth parents and living in Russia. These memories are just enough to help her remember her adoptive mother, Teetee, only went there to adopt one child, a baby boy – not a young girl – but came home with two. This issue is revisited throughout the book as Darya struggles to believe Teetee also wanted her, which causes a lot of resentment, feelings of inadequacy and self-esteem issues.

For Darya’s entire life, Teetee has operated what is called Philoxenia House, which is a shelter for abused women, hidden within a residential area. As a result, Darya is used to keeping secrets and sheltering and nurturing others. She learns, in the course of the story, that she has a special affinity for the deer of her area. Unfortunately, she also lives in an area of farmers and other residents who view the deer as a nuisance and want them gone. With the training that Darya has unknowingly received from Teetee her whole life, Darya has found her own cause to pursue. And by the end, she has grown up enough that she can finally view Teetee for what she really is – her mother.

Darya finds a kindred spirit in Rawley, a boy living with his uncle while his mother recovers from surgery. Once past some initial confusion, they seem to understand each other very well and have a connection that Darya hasn’t found with anyone else.

This book includes many illustrations of deer throughout the book, with some added history at the end about the different myths surrounding deer that I found very interesting. The plot does tend to move a little slowly in some spots, which may put off some younger readers but older and/or avid readers should have no problems with it.

This book deals with several heavy issues for teenagers with adoption, domestic violence, reincarnation and anti-hunting being included, as well as a subtle, underlying tone of female empowerment – so much so that I’m torn on suggesting the age limit be over sixteen. The topics are handled well by the author, but I might suggest that if younger teens read this they are mature enough to handle and understand the topics included. There are also some borderline paranormal elements in this book with Darya and the spirit of the deer that will bring up the female empowerment issues.

Well written, this book is an engrossing read. It kept me reading to find out what happened next and by the last page, which was left open for a sequel, I was interested in finding out what happens after the end. If the reader can handle the topics included, it will leave the door open for many interesting discussions with parents or friends. It is also a good read for kids who don’t feel they fit in anywhere, as Darya does come into her own by the end with a good understanding of who she is and how she fits into the world.

Under My Skin by Judith Graves

Under My Skin by Judith Graves
Publisher: Leap Books
Genre: Action/Adventure Paranormal
Age Recommendation: 14+
Length: Full Length (325 pgs)
Rating: 4 Suns
Reviewed by Snowdrop

All her parents wanted was for Eryn to live a normal life…

The town of Redgrave had had its share of monsters before Eryn moved to town. Mauled pets and missing children. The Delacroix family is taking the blame, but Eryn knows the truth. Something stalks the night. Wade, the police chief’s son and Regrave High’s resident hottie, warns her the Delacroix are dangerous. But then so is Eryn–in fact, she’s lethal.

But Eryn can’t help falling for one of the Delacroix boys, dark, brooding, human Alec. And then it all goes bad.

A normal life? That’s the real fairytale.

Have you ever had a secret that you couldn’t share? Eryn has a few secrets that she is trying to keep from her new friends. Worried about how they would take the news that she is much different from them, she tries her best to keep the secrets deep inside. Little does she know the town she now calls home has many of it’s own deep, dark issues too.

Eryn is a tough cookie, always showing off that she doesn’t need anyone’s help, but deep down she’s like every other girl – needing to fit in and feel loved. She accidentally stumbles across the secret that her friends have been keeping from her and joins forces with the misfits, Brit, Matt and the ever drool-worthy Alec. While her friendship with the misfits is growing, Wade the coolest kid in school, starts sniffing around and making her friends second guess their importance in Eryn’s life.

Once you turn the first page, you won’t want to stop, as you are drawn into the happenings in Redgrave. This is such a well written novel, with characters you can relate to and teenage issues you can remember dealing with yourself, except Eryn and the gang have the added touch of paranormal to the mix. A few characters (I can’t say who without sharing spoilers) seemed a little ho-hum at the beginning, but I know you will change your mind about them by the end of the book, as you see their secrets revealed.

I cannot wait to read the next book in the series! Will everyone’s secrets survive the chaos in Redgrave?

Island Sting by Bonnie J Doerr

Island Sting by Bonnie J. Doerr
Publisher: Leap books,
Genre: Action/adventure, contemporary
Length: Full Length (276 pgs)
Age Recommendation: 12+
Rating: 5 suns
Reviewed by Snapdragon

Kenzie didn’t expect her first summer in the Florida Keys to be murder. Cute guys, awesome boats, endangered species, gun-toting thugs…

When city girl Kenzie Ryan moves to a Florida wildlife refuge, she plunges straight into an eco-mystery. Kenzie trades New York streets for Keys pollution cleanup, and now, instead of hailing cabs, she’s tracking down a poacher of endangered Key deer.

Her new home does have some benefits—mainly Angelo, an island native, who teams up with her to nab the culprit.

But will they both survive when the killer turns from stalking deer to hunting humans?

Environmentalism leaps to the fore in this absolute page-turner by Bonnie Doerr. I love the fact that a couple of young people are trying to make a difference in the survival of an endangered species. Island Sting is a fantastic adventure with far more meaning than most.

Young Kenzie Ryan, a recent arrival in Florida, stumbles into a desperate situation and finds herself trying to rescue a wild deer.

Island Sting kicks off with a desperate effort and near drowning. Kenzie has all the reason in the world to be grateful to the good-looking (bronzed with wavy dark hair and a rock-start face!) and obviously very capable fellow who helps her – who is just a tad mysterious too.

It is not long before Kenzie stumbles into the local deer-poaching operation. Fortunately, she’s become friendly with the equally horrified guy, Angelo, who is as disgusted by the slaughter and as determined to catch the poachers as she is. Their chief issue isn’t so much the ability to work together, as agreeing on exactly who they are pursuing.

Many creatures other than the tiny Key deer gain Kenzie’s interest, from the Hawksbill turtles to the terrifying turkey buzzards. Doerr presents area ecosystems in part of the plot with great clarity; her descriptions never slow the pace at all. She hammers home her eco-message rather thoroughly, but it certainly is part of Kenzie’s motivation.

The plight of the deer, the beauty and overall feeling for nature and that sense of common-sense naturalism extended by the very-likable Angelo all add to the impact of the eco-message here. Some of the beauty of nature contrasts sharply with some of the less-civilized aspects of life in The Keys.

The overall sense of life in and around the local wildlife refuge is something of an exotic locale- far different from the many high-school hall YA’s I have read of late. Some aspects are a bit predictable, but nonetheless Island Sting offers an absolutely gripping plot line. The great characters and constantly fast pace of action make it a page-turner. Writing style suggests it is most appropriate for younger teens, but the lively action offers broad appeal.

Freaksville by Kitty Keswick

Freaksville by Kitty Keswick
Publisher: Leap Books
Genre: Action/Adventure, Contemporary, Paranormal
Age Recommendation: 14+
Length: Full (290 pages)
Rating: 5 Suns
Review by: Cholla

I didn’t go looking for trouble, but it found me anyway…

Too young to die. I had to act. I had to think. My pulse knocked hard. My brain wouldn’t function. This was all my fault…mine. I’d brought danger to Gillie with my stupid freakish gifts. If I’d never followed Josh, none of this would have happened. We would be safe in our boring routine. Josh’s lips would never have brushed mine. I’d never have known his love. My heart wouldn’t feel crammed beyond capacity. We wouldn’t be trapped in Bridges Auditorium with two crazed teenage werewolves…. Even with my dying breath, I wouldn’t veer from my heart.

Death by wolves, bring it on.

High school sucks when you live in Freaksville, also known as Stony Creek, CA. And what would make living there so much better? Special powers enabling you to see the future. Right? Not quite. At least, not as far as Kasey Maxwell is concerned. After having been blessed with the ability to see the future on her sixteenth birthday, things haven’t quite been the same for her. Armed with her sharp wit and her best friend, Gillie, Kasey does the best she can to just muddle through.

Kasey is your typical teenager. She thinks her parents haven’t a clue; her best friend is the greatest ever, loves to gab on the phone and believes that shopping can cure anything. She is also a total and complete crack-up. Using humor as both a defense mechanism and as a way to bolster her courage when it’s flagging, she’d be one of those girls you loved to hang around. Although she has a tendency to complain (what teenage girl doesn’t?) and underestimate herself, she has a strong support system in her parents and her best friend. And with them, she knows that she can overcome anything thrown at her. Psychic powers and all.

Josh Johnstone, British hottie supreme, is in California on an exchange program. He’s wise to Kasey’s act and refuses to let her get the best of herself if he can help it. He’s confident, courageous, and harboring a secret of his very own. Having grown up with a supernatural secret himself, he’s just what she needs to grow and become more secure with her abilities. Armed with a quick wit of his own, he and Kasey make the perfect couple. Their teasing, yet flirty conversations are engaging and entertaining, as well as very real-to-life.

Freaksville is a laugh-out-loud chronicle of Kasey Maxwell’s venture into ghost hunting, all things paranormal, and her first real boyfriend. Written as a series of blog entries, complete with comments, Ms. Keswick not only moves the young adult novel into the modern era, but also hooks the readers with her fun, flowing style and irrepressible sense of humor. From her witty chapter headings to the mystery surrounding the ghosts inhabiting the school’s theater to all the yet-unmentioned surprises lurking within, the author will capture your attention and hold it hostage until you’ve reached the end. A highly enjoyable read that left me anxious for the sequel.