All posts by Jen

Intrinsic (The Forbidden Doors #2)

Intrinsic (The Forbidden Doors #2)
by Cortney Pearson
Genre: YA Paranormal Romance
Release Date: June 12th 2017


Some boys are better left unkissed. Some books shouldn’t be read. And some doors should remain closed.

The bookstore where I work harkens back to another time—one of flapper dresses and cloche hats, of walking canes and tailored suits, and of boys with impeccable manners and ice-blue eyes. Boys like my coworker, Nikolay.

But the store also holds secrets—a formidable door missing its knob, a mystery bound in magic books, and the haunted look in Nikolay’s eyes. And there are crows that follow me home. Crows only I can see.

I can’t tell whether the crows are a threat or a warning. But one thing is certain, I’m in too deep to walk away. There is something behind that door in the bookstore. And it’s the key to getting the crows to stop, before they turn into something far more sinister.

Intrinsic is a mystical venture through ink and time, deliciously eerie, with enough angst, enigmas, and romantic charge to make your nails bite into your palms. Don’t miss this captivating, standalone companion to Cortney Pearson’s Phobic.

Buy on Amazon


The previous book in the companion series (click on image for Goodreads link):


About the Author
Cortney Pearson is a mother, a musician, and a lover of all things pink and sparkly. She is the author of Phobic, about doors that shouldn’t be opened, and the Stolen Tears series, about an enchanted vial of tears and the girl chosen to wield them. 

Cortney lives with her husband and three sons in a small Idaho farm town. She loves chocolate, romantic books, and classical music and believes anything can be made better with a book tucked away for those just-in-case times.
Author Links:
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A dark Journey into the light by Josef

Author: Josef
Series: Standalone
Genre: Autobiography
Publisher: Self – Published
Release Date: Sept 17 2016
Edition/Formats: eBook
A dark Journey into
the light
is an interesting and thought provoking read for anyone who has
questioned urges and desires familiar to us all. I spent sixty years of my life
in “limbo” trying to understand what was driving me to explore every fantasy I
could find. We all enjoy sex but the book provides interesting insights into
the workings of the mind of a sex addict. We are much more than what we feel,
and less than what we think. This book explores what is possible when we find
balance between the two. This is not a story of finding redemption through
“finding God”. It’s simply the story of finding myself.
Available for Purchase NOW 
Book Links
A Dark
Journey into the Light was a lifetime in the making and more than 2 years in
the writing. One of the biggest issues in life is sex and people usually make a
choice. They either follow their desires, or they don’t. This book looks at the
issues that arose, and the conflict of emotions I had to deal with when I chose
both, although it more correctly felt like they
chose me. Life became an exercise in
learning about myself by exploring what “lies beneath” as it reared
it’s head and found it’s way to the surface. There was no way around the
exploration because the battle for supremacy raging between the two was inside
me. What was the war all about and what would become of me? This book is about
my journey of continuing self-discovery as I move through the mystery we call
The book is
an autobiography so it’s pretty much all about me and who I am. I suppose there
are a few small things that aren’t covered. For instance, I like dogs and
horses and I love gardening. I’m a country boy and grew up with spiders and
snakes, and although I’m not keen on spiders if one crawls up my trouser leg
they don’t freak me out either. A snake up the trouser leg though would be a
different story! Think “a hillbilly version of River Dance.” I love long hikes
over the mountains or across the plains. Just as long as I’m walking somewhere,
but at times I wonder if I’m just trying to leave something behind.
A Dark
Journey into the Light is an interesting and thought provoking book for anyone
who has ever questioned urges and desires familiar to us all. It provides
interesting insights into the workings of the mind of a sex addict. We are much
more than what we feel, and less than what we think. This book explores the
healing that is possible when we find balance between the two.
Author Links
Facebook Author Page
Facebook Personal
Note from the Author
This is the story of my life. It has not been fabricated,
exaggerated, or embellished in any way. It’s the raw truth and I’m not really
sure why I’m writing it, but my therapist thinks it’s a good idea, and I can
understand her reasoning about that. Writing down my life’s story might simply
be a part of the healing process, so I can finally move on with my life and
live it like a normal person.
All my life I’ve wished for nothing more than just to be
normal, as I’ve looked around and envied other people’s untroubled lives. At
least that is how they appear on the surface. We can all be quite certain that
most people harbor some secrets in their lives. Those secrets might be small
things they regret or feel ashamed about. I wish people did not need to have
secrets and live in fear and guilt about their lives, because most things people
hide from are not worth the stress, but I guess I’m the same.
Maybe I should be able to shout from the rooftops, and tell
the world I’m not afraid or ashamed of my life, but in my heart I know many
people will stand in judgment of me. At the same time, I know deep down a lot
of people would applaud my courage if I did so, even if their own fears
prevented them from supporting me publicly. Therein lies the problem.
If you stand outside society’s norm you stand alone, through
social judgment and fear. Maybe I should just include it all in the category of
fear, and leave judgment out of it, considering all judgment has its roots in
Fear; the prime mover for almost every expression in our
lives. What would it be like to be free of fear?
Everyone has their problems, and people go through a great
deal of pain and suffering. I personally know people I would not trade places
with for anything on earth. We are all plagued by similar run-of-the-mill
issues, such as marriage breakups, financial problems, health issues, and
everything else that goes with living on this planet, as we try to coexist with
a whole lot of people. With most of them we have almost nothing in common,
except a pattern of similar reactions that maintain a reasonable level of
“sanity” in society. And it is all bound in fear.
It doesn’t sound like much of a way to live, but if you
question people about their lives and propose the idea that they are living in
fear, almost all of them will disagree. Some will even become angry, and
possibly violent, if you dare to start a debate with them on the issue. The
cruel irony is they won’t see, even then, that their reaction to the idea of
their lives being based on fear is in itself a fear-based reaction.
So why don’t I tell people about my life? Why don’t I stand
up, step out of the shadows society creeps around in, and put my trust in
people to accept my life?
Simple. People cannot be trusted.
Everyone knows this because everyone has a secret. The only
variable is the size of the secret, and mine would attract a massive excess
baggage fee if I packed it in a suitcase and boarded a plane.
I’ve experienced, or still do to some degree, all those
problems I spoke about: divorce, health, finance, and so on. I’m not saying my
life is difficult in the main, and in fact I often count myself lucky, giving
thanks for my life and the many things I enjoy, because unlike some others, at
least I have my health. I can walk, talk, eat, see, and hear. I also have a
brain that works well enough, which gives me the opportunity to make something
of myself, and do something with my life. I really cannot complain, so what
makes my life so different my therapist thinks it’s a good idea to write it
I don’t think the aspect of my life in question is
particularly unusual, or different, from that of a large percentage of the
population, so I guess it comes down to a question of degree and scope. When I
consider those factors I can’t help feeling my life has been a little unusual
to say the least, and a lot unusual to “say the most”.
There’s no doubt my life could, and would, be summed up by a
lot of people with words like sick, deviant, gross, pathetic, abhorrent,
disgusting, depraved, and so on.
These words are not new to me. I’ve tarred myself with every
one of them over the years, and nobody else could project the depth of feeling
in them more strongly than I have against myself. That projection evoked
feelings of shame, guilt, unworthiness, and self-loathing that cannot be
imagined. Even if I told you it’s impossible to imagine the things I’ve done,
and then gave you a hint, you still would not guess at the depth and breadth of
my life experience.
I’ve written about this in a way that tries to depict how I
felt at the time and how I feel now, and can only use words or terms that make
that possible. This book is not for the prudish or faint-hearted, so if you
like your reality painted over and sugar-coated, then this is not for you, and
I suggest you make a nice cup of tea and watch re-runs of Days of Our Lives instead.
I’m not complaining about my lot, and in some strange way I
have even come to appreciate it after all this time. All I want now is to make
some sense of it and possibly enrich the remainder of my life, and maybe even
help someone else with theirs.
It all seemed to begin harmlessly enough as a young child in
primary school but when I was a young teenager, an innocent conversation with
my mother raised the idea in me that my turbulent, obsessive journey had
actually begun when I was just a baby. I explore this in chapter 5.
In time I had no doubt about this, and it often led me to
wonder whether it was some kind of karmic load I was unloading, or if I was
building up a karmic load that would crush the life out of my soul.
This question would plague me throughout the decades to
come, but whatever the explanation, I was powerless to do anything about it.
All I could do was hang in, and hang on, as I plunged headlong through a
chaotic world of sensory self-gratification.
Where do I even start to give someone an idea of the duality
of the life I have lived for as long as I can remember? There is that old
cliché about starting at the beginning, and it may be right, but let’s just
skip ahead for a moment, because honestly, if I’m going to write this down I
don’t have time for norms or clichés.
Skipping ahead will also give me a clear reminder of why I’m
writing this, and what I’m writing about. I’ll come back later and try to join
some dots to give a clearer picture of what it always felt like to me: a life
unlived. Is that too dramatic, to call it a life unlived? I lived something,
didn’t I?
We all have some notion of what life should be like, or what
we wish it was like, but in my mind and heart my life never measured up to any
of my wishes. It just never felt like living. It felt like I was trapped in
some kind of time warp, or parallel universe, where I could only watch my life
happening around me as though it was someone else’s. But it is what it is.
Ooops, that sounds like a cliché.


Black Blade by Alexander Charalambides

Black Blade
by Alexander Charalambides
Genre: YA Urban Fantasy
Release Date: June 11th 2017


Lance is a hero.

With his friend Megan, he does his best to survive high school in a world that doesn’t always make sense, and is almost never fair.

When their school receives a donation from an anonymous millionaire, Lance and Megan find themselves on an international field trip to England, where the two receive an irresistible call to a supernatural adventure that could change their destinies, and the destiny of the country, forever.

Together with three mysterious adults who all claim to be wizards, Lance must safe-guard the legendary Excalibur. Traveling into a strange parallel world and keeping his friends, new and old, safe from harm at the hands of a malevolent army of magical soldiers, Lance discovers the truth about heroism and the content of his character.

My Review:

About the Author
Alexander Charalambides was born in London and grew up in Berkshire. He studied Creative Writing, and graduated from the Open University. In 2008 he moved to the United States, and now lives in New Hampshire. As a freelance writer Alexander enjoys storytelling just as much as editing and analysis, but often takes time off to enjoy wind surfing, do the sickest of motorcycle flips, wrestle with deadly animals and lie about his hobbies.

The Colonel’s Mistake (Mark Sava #1) by Dan Mayland

Summary: Mark Sava, former CIA station chief of Azerbaijan, lives a quiet life as a professor at Western University in the city of Baku. But his peace is shattered by both the assassination of a high-level American during an international oil conference and the arrest of CIA operations officer Daria Buckingham for the crime.

Sava knows the Iranian American Buckingham well—he personally trained her—and doesn’t believe she had anything to do with the murder, so he visits a CIA control center to discuss the situation with the new station chief. When no one answers the outside intercom, Sava overrides the security code and stumbles upon the grisliest scene of his career. Now, he can’t help but wonder if he really knows Buckingham as well as he thought.…

Determined to find out, Sava soon finds himself and a partner caught in the middle of the new Great Game—a deadly intelligence war over oil that has Iran, China, and the United States clawing at each other’s throats. Meanwhile, Colonel Henry Amato, assistant to the US national security advisor, is keeping a close watch on the situation from Washington. His stake in the Great Game is high—and personal.

From the shadows of the world’s most volatile region to the highest levels of Washington politics, The Colonel’s Mistake takes listeners on an unforgettable ride where the good, the bad, and the brutal play a deadly chess game of global espionage.

My Review- When I was looking for a book on Kindle Unlimited for a book set in Azerbaijan, this gem popped up. I am so glad I decided to do this challenge because this book was freaking amazing. It was a non stop thriller that took you all over the Middle East in one hell of a spy chase. The characters were complex and spies (duh) one of them potentially a trader that has ties to both the US and Iran… I mean seriously could it get more complex than that?

Plus this book takes you all over the streets of Azerbaijan, Iran and UAE places that most of us will never visit… so that is cool as hell. I loved the main characters and their dynamic. IT was well developed and the plot is delightfully thick, it will keep you guessing and turning the page right until the very end.

Such a great book that I am glad I stumbled upon when searching for a book set in Azerbaijan for my reading challenge.

Fun Confession: I had NO FLIPPING clue how to pronounce this country but since I listened to it on an audio book I now do and I think I am going to go around saying Azerbaijan from now on, cause it is a cool sounding country. Ha!