Notice for Review Requests

I receive review requests weekly. However, my school and personal schedule is hectic and I no longer review actively. (I also manage another blog called The Toronto Cafe Blog). I do read every request sent but I apologize in advance that I do not reply to them all.

If I do take on a request, I will forewarn that it may take sometime before I can review it. However, requests for author guest posts are more than welcomed.

In the meantime, Stop, Drop, and Read! serves as an archive book review blog. When I have the time, a review may be posted.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Author Guest Post: Tara Ellis on Bloodline

I am actually in the midst of three novels right now (Alice in Zombieland, S.E.C.R.E.T. Shared and Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix). I'm still very slow at reading so I have no idea when I will finish any of these novels. If you are interested in seeing a review for any or all, do let me know in the comments below! It will definitely motivate me to read faster haha.

In the mean time, I have another author guest post for you guys! This time from Tara Ellis on her novel, Bloodline.

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Thank you Diana, for letting me visit you on your blog! I appreciate this chance to share a little about my book Bloodline, and the Forgotten Origins Trilogy.

Bloodine is book one in the trilogy and was released last year. I have since published book two, Heritage, and I’m almost done with book three. I plan on releasing Descent in early September, so anyone who chooses to read the series won’t have long to wait.

Today I want to focus primarily on Bloodline and what the story is about. This is most definitely a Young Adult tale, but also falls into the sub-genres of Science Fiction and Dystopian. I have always been a lover of scifi, especially anything with medical overtones and you will pick up on that right away in Bloodline. I think the best way to introduce the book is by giving you the back-of-the-book blurb! 

Sixteen-year-old Alex has always suspected her father’s death wasn’t random, but she never guessed how deep the mystery runs or what it involves. When a rare meteor shower is followed by a highly contagious infection, the people she once knew so well start acting like they have a similar purpose that doesn’t include her. Alex can now only rely on her friend Chris and loyal dog Baxter as she plunges into a strange, new world predestined since ancient times. Wandering the mountains of the Pacific Northwest, deciphering cryptic messages left by her father, desperately searching for a cure-will Alex have the courage and faith to even survive?

I have (so far) gotten a 4.6 star rating with 13 reviews on Amazon, so as my debut novel, I am very happy with how it has been received. The most common response I have heard is that it is a very fast, exciting read with some unexpected twists and turns. Bloodline isn’t your typical Young Adult novel in that it has a likeable and believable main character in Alex. Not only is she more concerned about her family’s survival than getting the guy’s attention, but she is also tough and intelligent.

Anyone who enjoys an epic saga with serious consequences will want to read Bloodline, and then I hope you’ll tell your friends about it!


Find all of my titles on my author website at Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/author/taraellis

Direct link to Bloodline: amazon.com/dp/B00ILPL7K8

Come hang out with me on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/forgottenoriginsbloodlineHeritageDescent/timeline

Or if you prefer Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7457338.Tara_Ellis


Author Tara Ellis lives in a small town in beautiful Washington State in the Pacific Northwest. She enjoys the quiet lifestyle with her husband, two teenage kids and several dogs. Having been a firefighter/EMT and working in the medical field for several years, she now teaches CPR and concentrates on family, photography and writing young adult novels.
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Sunday, June 29, 2014

S.E.C.R.E.T. by L. Marie Adeline

Title: S.E.C.R.E.T.
Author: L. Marie Adeline
Age Group: Adults
# of Pages: 271
My Rating: 3/5

Cassie has been living a lonely life after the death of her husband. She works at Cafe Rose as a waitress and does the same thing everyday. One day, a cafe regular forgets a notebook that changes Cassie's life thereafter. 

Cassie discovers a society called S.E.C.R.E.T. that helps women like her realize their sexual desires. Cassie is unsure of joining at first but decides to take the chance. This begins her electrifying journey of unknown pleasures.

I received the first two volumes of the series for free when I was about to enter a convention with my friend. I'd always been curious about erotica novels so I thought it would be a good place to start. 

For the first few chapters, I was not happy with Cassie's character. She put herself down constantly and acted like a whiny teenager in a 35-year-old body. She moaned about how life was not great and seemed to be fearful of change. I felt no sympathy for her because of her personality. I have already read through countless novels where YA female protagonists wallow often in self-pity. Sadly, it is only through a man's (or in this case, a few men) validation when they finally begin to feel more confident about themselves. S.E.C.R.E.T. is the same, except with the naughty bits thrown in there for adult reading pleasure.

The good news was that it got better throughout. Cassie became more tolerable and the novel was decent to read. I like Adeline's writing style. It is clean and simple. I felt though the setup of the organization S.E.C.R.E.T. was a bit unrealistic but it is fictional story. I don't recommend S.E.C.R.E.T. but it's not a terrible read. Just not a memorable one and the protagonist can get under your skin in the beginning.

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Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Eona by Alison Goodman

Title: Eona
Author: Alison Goodman
Age Group: Teens
# of Pages: 637
My Rating: 5/5

Eona is running from the High Lord Sethon's armies. He wishes to obtain the power of the twelve dragons and become the ultimate ruler of the land. Trying to escape from the enemies, Eona struggles with the politics, dragon power, and love. She must figure out what she must do, before the land falls into ruins.

I'm going to admit, this review is about three years overdue. I started reading Eona back in 2011, which was when I slowly stopped reviewing as often. Considering the size of the novel, I wasn't very enthused to pick it up as frequently. Therefore, I picked it up once in awhile within the past three years and maybe read a chapter or two. However, this past couple of weeks I decided to try and finish the novel once and for all.

Goodman has an excellent style of writing that creates memorable stories. Even when I forgot what had happened, whenever I read the novel again months after, I am quickly reminded within a few pages. The language of the world is also unique, which I would like to described as flowery. Once you start reading, you get sucked into the world. Fast. All the characters served their purpose in the novel and helped the protagonist develop personally and physically. While the first novel focused on Eona coming out as the Mirror Dragoneye, the second novel focused on Eona's role in the war and the dragons.

I think it is a great sequel and one of a few series I would love to see as a movie or TV series. The world is just so colourful and intricate that you want it to come to life. I really do recommend this novel if you enjoy fantasy novels. If you have read Silver Phoenix by Cindy Pon, you would enjoy Eon and Eona as well. Both volumes are lengthy but definitely engaging.

Review copy provided by Penguin Canada.
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Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Author Guest Post: Kimberly Loth on Roses

Hello my lovely readers. Today, I have another author guest on my blog. Kimberly Loth's debut novel is Kissed, which was released at the beginning of May. Let me know in the comments if you have read Kissed already and your thoughts on it! 


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Thank you for having me on your blog today. I’m thrilled to be able to talk about Kissed. This journey has been so amazing. Today I want to talk about something that readers have told me they’ve really enjoyed about the book. The roses.

I consider myself a lifelong learner. I love learning new things. And I love books that teach me about new things or places. One of the first things I often do when I finish a book is Google the setting, a hobby a character had or something else interesting I found in the book. My favorite books are ones that not only captured me up in the story but one that taught me something I never knew before. For example, in North of Beautiful by Justina Chen her main character loves maps and learns how to geocache. I’d never heard of the concept before that book. Now, it’s a hobby that I enjoy.

I wanted to capture that spirit in Kissed. My main character, Naomi, is obsessed with roses. From a young age she learned how to garden with her grandmother and by the time we meet her at sixteen, she has a greenhouse filled with exotic rose blends and a garden out back.

I start every chapter with something she knows about roses or how she applies those roses to her life. Here’s the one from chapter four.


Seven roses contain the name of the day of rest. My favorite is Sunday Lemonade. Its pale pink blooms give off a scent of lazy summer nights visiting with friends. Just the opposite of the many Sabbaths I spend with my father. His Sundays smell like famine and pestilence.

Many readers have asked how I know so much about roses. The truth is, I didn’t know much until I started writing Kissed. I’d always loved roses. My grandpa grew them and I loved watching him trim them when I was a child. He always picked a few roses for me and cut off all the thorns. But I’d never grown my own before.

When I knew Naomi needed this, I checked out every book on roses my small community library contained. (Five books, in case you were wondering). I began reading everything I could online. I found out there are literally thousands of different roses. It was so fun finding roses to fit each situation. But I needed more than that.

I drove out to my local Lowes and picked out a few plants. I only chose ones that smelled good and would bloom all season. A lot of rose bushes will only bloom once a year and while Naomi was content with that, I wasn’t.

I’ve always had a black thumb. I killed everything I grew. Everything I read said that roses were hard to grow. To my surprise, not only did they live, but they flourished. I loved those roses. Honestly, I think that was the key. We’ve moved since then, but for a couple of years I had gorgeous smelly roses. Not only that, I was able to really get a feel for the roses and add an authenticity that research alone doesn’t give you.

If you are interested in trying to grow your own roses, I would recommend Oklahoma, Tiffany, or Granada roses. They seem to do well in most climates and have dreamy smells. Also, Miracle Grow Roses does wonders.

I hope you will enjoy Kissed. You can buy it on Amazon.


~~~


About Kissed:

Trapped in a dark cult, sixteen-year-old Naomi Aren has lived a quiet, albeit unhappy, life nestled deep in the hills of the Ozarks. With uncut hair, denim skirts, and only roses for friends, Naomi seldom questions why her life is different from other kids at school. Until the day her abusive father, who is also the cult’s leader, announces her wedding. Naomi must marry Dwayne Yerdin, a bully who reeks of sweat and manure and is the only one person who scares her worse than her father. 

Then she meets Kai, the mysterious boy who brings her exotic new roses and stolen midnight kisses. Kisses that bring her a supernatural strength she never knew she had. As the big day approaches, Naomi unearths more secrets of about her father’s cult. She learns she has power of her own and while Kai may have awakened that power, Naomi must find a way to use it to escape Dwayne and her father—without destroying herself.

http://amzn.to/1ix9Bcd

~~~

About Kimberly Loth:

Kimberly Loth can’t decide where she wants to settle down. She’s lived in Michigan, Illinois, Missouri, Utah, California, Oregon, and South Carolina. She finally decided to make the leap and leave the U.S. behind for a few years. Currently, she lives in Cairo, Egypt with her husband and two kids.

She is a high school math teacher by day (please don’t hold that against her) and YA author by night. She loves romantic movies, chocolate, roses, and crazy adventures. Kissed is her first novel.

https://www.facebook.com/kimberlylothbooks
http://kimberlyloth.com
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20612227-kissed
https://www.amazon.com/author/kimberlyloth
Twitter: @kimberlyloth
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Friday, May 16, 2014

Empower: Fight Like a Girl & Lupus Awareness Month

Praise for Empower: Fight Like A Girl

"Even non-girls will feel empowered by these stories about ordinary, flawed characters finding their own strengths. Highly entertaining and original."
- Lee Goldberg, New York Times bestselling author of The Chase and King City, whose mother lost her hearing to lupus.

Women of TV have united against lupus! Presenting Empower: Fight Like A Girl, a special collection of short stories by top women writers from some of your favorite shows, including: Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Family Guy, Person of Interest, Grimm, Battlestar Galactica, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Law & Order: SVU, Star Trek: Voyager, Eureka, Twisted, The 100, Malcolm in the Middle, Millennium, Being Human, The Shield, Castle, Chuck, Gilmore Girls, and Game of Thrones. In this anthology, you'll discover supernatural thrillers, crime mysteries, horror, comedies, and more.

Authors contributing stories to this volume include:

  • Amy Berg
  • Cherry Chevapravatdumrong
  • Akela Cooper
  • Liz Edwards
  • Jane Espenson
  • Shalisha Francis  
  • Nadine Knight
  • Lisa Klink
  • Pang-Ni Landrum
  • Lauren LeFranc
  • Kam Miller
  • Jess Pineda
  • Jennifer Quintenz
  • Lisa Randolph
  • Kay Reindl
  • Kira Snyder
  • Jeane Wong


  • All proceeds will be donated to the non-profit Lupus Foundation of America to help solve the cruel mystery of lupus. You can purchase the novel on Amazon here.
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    Friday, April 4, 2014

    Author Guest Post: Yasmin Shiraz on Date Rape and What to Do

    Yasmin Shiraz is the author of the Retaliation series and Accused is the second novel in the series that just has been released. It's about a serial rapist that has been attacking girls across the Georgia Atlantic University campus. One of the characters is falsely accused. Here's the synopsis:

    An easier and more peaceful life seemed to be destined for Ahmed and Tashera when they left Washington, DC and entered Georgia Atlantic University. But when Ahmed is accused of a crime that he didn't commit and begins to be tried in the media, his popularity plummets, his self-esteem suffers, and his dreams of playing college basketball disappear. 

    Meanwhile, there is a serial rapist on campus who has been attacking freshman girls at record numbers and forcing them to keep silent. As Tashera learns about the girls, she begins to close in on the rapist. But is the attacker too crafty to be caught? Will the state prosecutor ignore key evidence to instead focus on the fame that comes with convicting a high profile basketball star? 


     Tashera is beyond stressed as she divides her time between trying to find enough evidence to clear Ahmed while at the same time stopping the rapist who roams the campus of Georgia Atlantic. Ahmed and Tashera's journey into a new life away from home is more challenging than they ever thought that it would be.


    I have the pleasure of hosting a guest post from Yasmin on date rape and what to do if you or a loved one has been affected. If you would like to know more about Yasmin and her novels, please check out her website at www.yasminshiraz.net.

    ~~~

    Date Rape--What Do I Do Now?

    by Yasmin Shiraz, Author of Accused


    The White House recently released a report that stated 1 in 5 women are sexually assaulted at college. At colleges and universities across the US, the date rape drug is often at the center of these sexual assaults. Knowing that so many women were being assaulted motivated me to write my book, Accused.

    But, what do you do if you feel that you've been sexually assaulted while under the influence of a date rape drug? And, how do friends or family members help a person who has been sexually assaulted?

    If you believe that you've been sexually assaulted, go to the hospital emergency room. If possible, have a friend take you. Don't bathe, douche, urinate, wash your hands, change clothes, eat or drink before you go to the emergency room. There may be evidence on your body and/or on your clothing. The evidence must be preserved as much as possible. Once you're at the hospital, call the police. Tell the police everything that you remember. The police are there to find the perpetrator not to judge you. So, be honest about all of your activities. Telling the truth will be most helpful in finding the perpetrator.

    Many victims of sexual assault feel guilty for going to a party, for drinking alcohol, for dancing with strangers, but nothing that you do --including drinking alcohol or doing drugs--can justify rape. The feeling of being violated is often difficult to overcome. But, there are hotline counselors as well as campus counselors to help you process your feelings. The National Sexual Assault Hotline is 24 hours to speak with victims at 800-656-HOPE.

    Friends and family members should be supportive but many of us don't know how. Here are some tips:
    1. Listening when and if the victim wants to talk. You don't have to ask them specific questions, but be willing to be a non-judgmental good listener.
    2. Let your loved one know that you don't blame them for what happened. Many victims feel guilty even though being raped wasn't their fault. 
    3. Be patient. Your loved one may take a while to feel better or get back to "normal." Give them time to heal. 
    4. Offer to accompany them to a support group. Sometimes it's intimidating to go to a new place by yourself. But, when a friend or family member is willing to go with you, it encourages you. 
    5. Let your loved one know that you believe in them. It seems like a simple thing but many victims begin to feel badly about themselves after being raped. Let your loved one know that you support them, love them and believe in them. 
    Please share this article with anyone that you feel could use this information. Many victims suffer in silence. I'd love your comments and feedback. Feel free to email me yshiraz AT yasminshiraz dot net or on twitter @yasminshiraz.
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    Saturday, February 1, 2014

    Giveaway: Obstacles by Christopher Michael Reardon

    Hey everyone! I've decided to host a giveaway by request of the debut author, Chris Reardon. His novel Obstacles is a YA urban fantasy/paranormal genre. 

    If you are interested in possibly winning a copy, you can enter below! Your choice of paperback or E-book. Open worldwide and ends on March 1st. 

    Title: Obstacles
    Author: Christopher Michael Reardon
    Description: A child will die. You're afraid to live. Would you go to all lengths to save him? Darkness knows no bounds, as Alcott, an African American doctor sees all too well. The man is petrified by death. His fragile existence rests at the mercy of the universe. This fact is far too much for him to handle. From unyielding nightmares to elevator terrors, he's lost in paranoia. 

    Assigned to look after an ill child, Alcott's horrors only heighten. Gari is a nine-year-old boy with a fatal disease. He will surely pass on within the year. Alcott bonds with him more and more each day. Part of him knows this grim fate just isn't right. 

    Alcott befriends a hospital patient. This lunatic forces him to lug home an ancient text on bringing back the dead. Despite the man's obvious dementia, Alcott attempts the scheme. Charging up a cliff, he recites the chant over ocean gusts. A god woman glides in from the horizon. She instructs Alcott on the trials to save Gari's life. These fearsome Obstacles require true strength. From battling sharks to wielding a flail, he must prove fortitude against genuine danger. Alcott decides his fate at this moment. 

    Death's claws shall not grasp Gari's soul.