Friday, November 6, 2009

Review of "According to Jane" by Marilyn Brant

I literally JUST finished "According to Jane" by Marilyn Brant and.. whoa! I received this as an ARC from a Jane Austen week contest (it was great! Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, Mr. Darcy, Vampyre, etc!), and I FINALLY got around to reading and reviewing it, and boy am I happy I did!

The blurb: " It begins one day in sophomore English class, just as Ellie Barnett's teacher is assigning Jane Austen's "Pride and Prejudice." From nowhere comes a quiet "tsk" of displeasure. The target: Sam Blaine, the cute bad boy who's teasing Ellie mercilessly, just as he has since kindergarten. Entirely unbidden, as Jane might say, the author's ghost has taken up residence in Ellie's mind, and seems determined to stay there.

Jane's wise and witty advice guides Elli through the trauma of adolescence and beyond, serving as the voice she trusts, usually, more than her own. Years and boyfriends come and go, but Jane's counsel is constant, and on the subject of Sam, quite insistent. STAY AWAY, Jane demands. He is your Mr. Wickham.

Still, everyone has something to learn about love -- perhaps even Jane herself. And lately, the voice in Ellie's head is being downed out by another, urging her to look beyond all she thought she knew and seek out her very own, very unexpected happy ending... "

Ooooh, sounds good right? Honestly, when I first got the book, I thought it was a Young Adult book, I don't know why. But really, not at all. Yes, you do get snippets of when she was in High school, but she's an adult for most of the book. In fact, I got the sense that until the last few chapters of the book, she was in her thirties, and just retelling this story for my benefit. Marilyn Brant did a wonderful job with this story, and it kind of makes me want to have Jane Austen in my head, guiding me through life, as a constant companion. Brant weaves (yes, weaves is the best description) a beautiful tale of Ellie's life from High School to her thirties. I loved the ending, I gotta say, it makes me giddy with happiness. And I really connected with Ellie. I've had some... trials in the love department, as well as seen others get married and find happiness, even have children, all while feeling a little lost and alone. You can really watch Ellie grow up, mature, and find herself. And that's another thing I love about the book, that she does manage to mature on her own, without the need of a man being there and guiding her.

I give "According to Jane" by Marilyn Brant a FIVE out of FIVE stars. I loved it. I'm recommending it to everyone, really. Heck, if I could give it a higher score, I would, but I don't want to get into weird fractions, or impossible numbers. I really do hope you all read and enjoy this. As I'm sure you gathered, it's not really paranormal-y, except the fact that Jane Austen's ghost is present. And I wouldn't necessarily call it romance-y either.. more.. Fiction, or maybe chick-lit. Really good chick-lit.

Happy reading, and check out "According to Jane!"
~ Morning Glow

Photo courtesy of
Copy was won in a contest, review was not done in exchange for book.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Review(ette?) of "Dhampir Passions" by Mary Corrales

I won a .pdf copy of "Dhampir Passions" by Mary Corrales from a Halloween contest, and am I glad!

The premise:
" Living in the post-war American Western Barrans, Linea Kamiya is in danger of becoming a vamp master's minion. While she hides Desmondi's evil mark from the townsfolk of Whickeup, the town council intends to take her farmland for themselves. Linea's only hope lies with an enigmatic stranger.
Raduslav Dracula is hunting for the vampire who stole the Draculesti Bloodstone from his family's gravesite. When Radu's attraction to Linea turns physical, he knows he will have to battle with his heart as well as the demon Desmondi. Is the half-blood Dhampir strong enough to embrace his own cursed nature to defeat Desmondi? "

Oooo sounds good, right?! It is! I was so interested in the setting, it says "post-war" in the synopsis, but it seems to be post-some-huge-nuclear-war-that-changed-everything. Okay, not everything. But people are sterile, or at least some of them, and single women are.. well, I don't want to say taboo, but they only have a few years of being single, and if they don't find someone to marry them, they have to go to whorehouses. Really, the author could have just focused on this world and created a book and then some. I would have loved to see more development of the world, but that's just me wanting to read more about it. Which is a good thing, of course. As for the plot, I liked it. As usual with shorter books, I wish there was more ("Dhampir Passions" is.. well, we'll say about 40 pages). But despite how short it was, I think the characters were well developed, likeable, and I kinda want my own Radu. I also thought it was interesting that she actually made Radu part of the Dracul bloodline.. and instead of being a full vampire like most do.. he's a Dhampir. I thought that was great.

So! I would give "Dhampir Passions" a FIVE out of FIVE. I really liked it, I just can't get over how cool the world was, and as I said, I want my own Radu. Christmas is coming up, you know.. someone get on that!

Happy Reading, everyone!
~ Morning Glow

Photo courtesy of Eternal Press (publisher)
.pdf copy was won in a contest, copy was not received in exchange for a review. Review was provided for fun.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

A Contest for you to check out!!

The blog Fangs, Fur, and Fey are celebrating their three year anniversary with a wonderful contest! What are they giving away to the lucky winner(s) you may ask?! Well! The grand prize winner gets a Kindle! And twenty two other winners will get a 20 dollar gift card to a vendor of their choice (they have a list to choose from).

I've already sent in my entry, what are you waiting for??? Oh.. the link? Right! Here you go!
HERE Good luck!

And on another note, yesterday (Tuesday Nov 3) was the release day for Me and My Shadow, Katie MacAlister's next Silver dragons novel. I'm heading out to grab my copy later today. Here's hoping I find it in the first store I go to! My city isn't big on book stores.. and the ones we do have, almost never have new ones out.

Happy reading!!
Morning Glow

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Writing contest - I need your votes!

Hello lovely readers! I have a huge favor to ask of you...

Just to get myself writing something, ANYTHING, I entered into a contest over at Writtenwyrdd. The prize isn't money, but an adorable Chthulu plushie. Plus, it'll allow me to put a "win" on my record. Horror isn't my genre, but at least I tried! My story is called "The Haunted House" and I'd be super greatful if you would go and vote for my story. Or just vote in general!

The link to the vote post is: HERE

Thank you!! And I hope everyone had a Happy Halloween!!

~Morning Glow