Review of Hanami (#1) and Hazakura (#2) by V.C. Buckley (plus a $10 Giveaway!)

Hanami by VC Buckley Review Tour

Today we’re featuring Hanami and Hazakura (the sequel!) by author V.C. Buckley! This is a series in a genre that I don’t usually review, but lately I’ve been trying to be more open to contemporary fiction (you know, young adult, new adult, etc.) so I jumped at the chance to join this blog tour. I’m also pretty psyched because the author is from Manila! Gotta support my fellow Filipina, you know. :)

Read more about the books below and check out my review. Then enter the blog tour giveaway for a chance to win a $10 gift card to Amazon or B&N. Yay!

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Review: The Ribs and Thigh Bones of Desire by Sandra Hutchison

I don’t review anything that isn’t fantasy or science fiction on this blog often unless it was something that really piqued my interest. And Sandra Hutchison’s The Ribs and Thigh Bones of Desire was something that caught my attention when I first read the summary. I guess it was because it reminded me a little bit of Another Earth, this awesome indie film starring Brit Marling. The movie and this book are quite different but have similar main characters. The story of Another Earth revolves around a young woman who cleans the house of a music professor who lost his family in a car crash. In Ribs and Thigh Bones, the story revolves around a teenage girl who keeps house for a physics professor who lost his family in a plane crash. Interesting, right?

Anyway, read on to know more about The Ribs and Thigh Bones of Desire and check out my thoughts on the book.

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The Asphalt Warrior Series by Gary Reilly

I read Gary Reilly’s The Heart of Darkness Club last year and I really liked it. Reilly’s writing style and language is smooth, clever and quite entertaining. I would’ve liked to review the other books in The Asphalt Warrior Series, but I just don’t have the time. Hopefully though I’ll get a hold of the books in the not so distant future. :)

In the meantime, please read about the newly-released books in the series: Dr. Lovebeads and Home For The Holidays. Also, you might want to check out the other tour stops and enter the giveaways!

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Review: The Heart of Darkness Club by Gary Reilly

I finished this book on the same day I posted that I was late with this review. On that day I finished my work, did a couple of posts (including my tour stop post for this book), had a late dinner and then plopped down on my bed with my iPad and finished the book relatively quickly! Anyway, I don’t want to bore you with any more details about that so let’s talk about the book, shall we?

The Heart of Darkness Club by Gary Reilly

The entire book is narrated from a first person perspective by the main character Murph, a 40-something Denver cab driver who also happens to be an English major grad and an unpublished novelist. The book is basically a snapshot of his life as a cabbie or as an “asphalt warrior” and about what kind of person he is, and then it gets pretty interesting when he picks up a guy who may or may have not left him a note on a five dollar bill. He picks this guy up a couple more times before the guy disappears and Murph gets investigated by the police.

The Heart of Darkness Club is the third book in the Asphalt Warrior Series. Find out more about the series here.

Great writing, great story

I really liked this book. I loved the writing style, the flow of the story, the plot itself, the characters, almost everything. The cover could use a little more work because it just doesn’t capture how interesting this book is. I haven’t read the first two novels in the series, but it didn’t matter because The Heart of Darkness Club can stand on its own. There may be references to stuff that happened in the previous books, but the author didn’t dwell on those too much and they didn’t leave any burning questions for the reader.

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Blog Tour: The Heart of Darkness Club by Gary Reilly

Egad, I am delayed with a review again! I’m currently reading this book and it’s pretty interesting so far–flows easily and reads like a casual conversation. I’ll have my review before the tour ends!

In the meantime, read more about The Heart of Darkness Club and its author Gary Reilly (who passed away before any of his novels were published). Also, please check out the other tour stops. :)

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Blog Tour & Giveaway: Poison Me by Cami Checketts (plus the author’s top 10 favorite literary characters!)

Blog Tour Schedule

Hello! I am actually away at the beach this weekend, but here’s an awesome blog tour and giveaway for you! Read about Poison Me, the latest by author Cami Checketts. There’s a tour-wide giveaway so don’t forget to put in your entries for a chance to win AWESOME stuff! ;)

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Spotlight: Shades of Gray by Susanne Jacoby Hale

Nope, this is not that Shades of Gray. This is a different kind of book and I’ll be doing a review of this next year. In the meantime, read more about it and see if this is something that interests you! Download a preview by clicking on the link at the bottom of this post. :)

About the book

In inner-city New York, horrors lurk in the unruly hallways of Malcolm High School. As in-school riots and gang violence consistently envelop the classroom, Olivia Dalton attempts to teach her students while simultaneously directing a drop-out prevention program that embraces an ever-increasing group of at-risk students. Left with little hope she will ever have children of her own, Olivia becomes entrenched in her students’ lives, partly out of love, but also out of an unconscious desire to avoid her own internal anguish.

Meanwhile, Olivia’s devoted husband, Tom, is having trouble facing his own disappointments in not being able to create a family. In an effort to protect Olivia, he attempts to hold her back from the one place she feels useful and fulfilled-her career. But despite her husband’s efforts to quell her desire to help the troubled and confused, Olivia presses on and believes in change, even in the face of her students’ continual mistakes and poor choices. Neither Tom nor Olivia have any idea that everything is about to change when an unassuming gift is left at their door.

Shades of Gray is the profound story of one woman’s unpredictable journey to the truth, new beginnings, and a kind of love she never knew before.

About the author

SUSANNE JACOBY HALE, a former drop-out prevention teacher in a New York City high school, earned a master’s degree from New York University in education and creative writing. Although, when she began teaching in the real ACE program, depicted in Shades of Gray, she had no idea that it would change her life forever. Having been out of the classroom for a few years, Jacoby Hale still felt the need to make a difference in the lives of students.

Website | Facebook | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Download a preview of Shades of Gray here.

Book Club Bash: Review of X-It by Jane George

This is my second stop for Book Club Bash and I have here a review of X-It by author Jane George. :)


In 1980 NYC, eighteen-year-old J.J. Buckingham is an uptight trendoid. Working as a mannequin painter and a counter girl, she moonlights as a creature of the nightclubs. J.J. falls for aloof, crazy-talented artist and bicycle messenger X-It. In order to win his love, she succumbs to the dark machinations of drug dealer Marko Voodoo. X-It will love her if she’s the queen of underground Manhattan, right? Her plan backfires with horrendous consequences. J.J. must scrap her way out of a maze of drugs, clubs, and danger before she realizes she’s worthy of a better life. And true love might just come in the form of a clean-cut geek in Buddy Holly glasses.

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Giveaway & Interview: Marisol Murano, author of Valentina Goldman’s Immaculate Confusion

Here’s a great interview with Marisol Murano, author of Valentina Goldman’s Immaculate Confusion. Part “Bridget Jones Diary,” part “Modern Family,” Valentina Goldman’s Immaculate Confusion is the story of a South American woman trying to get a handle on her wacky life in America.

Read on to know more about Marisol and enter the giveaway to win one of three e-book copies of her book!

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