Pas de Deux now available in paperback

The paperback edition of Pas de Deux is now available through createspace and Amazon.  Follow the life of Elena Gleason as she gets more than she bargained for upon meeting the mysterious Anastasios thanks to a magical locket.

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Special thanks to Kostis Petridis who designed my amazing cover.  If you’d like to contact him about book cover designs or other graphic art, you can visit his website by clicking here.

Pas de Deux available at Midnight

This is a friendly reminder that Pas de Deux is available at midnight on November 18th in ebook form, with both paperback and hardcover editions to follow.  Grab a copy and get sucked into the life of Elena, who wants nothing more than to become a ballerina in the New York City Ballet, but somehow ends up entwined with a depressed stranger who hopes she can save him from his solitude.

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Review of The Final Warning by James Patterson

The Final Warning
A Maximum Ride Novel (Book 4)
By James Patterson

Star Rating: 
Genre: Young Adult, Young Adult Sci-Fi, Young Adult Fantasy
Number of Pages: 320

Date Started: November 10, 2016
Date Finished: November 11, 2016

Synopsis: (From Amazon)james-patterson-the-final-warning
FIRST SHE WAS WATCHED.

In this breathtaking new story from the astonishing imagination of James Patterson, a girl has to save herself from an army assembled just to capture her – and maybe save the planet while she’s at it.

THEN SHE WAS THREATENED.

Maximum Ride is a perfectly normal teenager who just happens to be able to fly, the result of an out-of-control genetic experiment. Max and the other members of the flock – five kids who share her remarkable ability – have been asked to aid a group of environmental scientists studying the effects of global warming. The expedition seems like a perfect combination of adventure, activism – and escaping government forces who are watching the flock all the time.

THIS IS HER FINAL WARNING.

But even in Antarctica, enduring in the harshest weather on our planet, Maximum Ride is an irresistible target in constant danger. For whoever controls her powers could also control the world. . . .

Maximum Ride is James Patterson’s greatest character, a heroine who manages to be human and fearless at once. The Final Warning is an unrelenting new adventure from the writer Time magazine has called “The Man Who Can’t Miss.”

Review:
Everything I’ve previously said about the Maximum Ride books, good depth and characterization, good pacing, is all true in this one as well.  What is even better about this book is the information and knowledge given about a very serious issue going on in our world, something that we are all obligated and responsible to work towards stopping.  I think this book would be excellent to teach to middle schoolers to get them thinking about world issues.

That being said, the book is rather light in comparison to the others.  There aren’t lots of fight scenes and everything seems a bit more subdued than we are used to the flock experiencing.  Many Amazon reviews seem to dislike this novel, and it isn’t a typical Maximum Ride book.  Full of political awareness, this book doesn’t really fit with the other three as well as it could have.  The antagonist seems like a side plot thrown in so there is some sort of fighting tension, a chance to see what happens due to global warming in action, and the antagonist is far too easily thwarted.

618wcp0vm9l-_ux250_Author Biography: (From Amazon)
James Patterson received the Literarian Award for Outstanding Service to the American Literary Community at the 2015 National Book Awards. His other awards include two Emmys, the Edgar Award, and the Children’s Choice Award for Author of the Year. He is a tireless champion of the power of books and reading, exemplified by his new children’s book imprint, JIMMY Patterson, whose mission is simple: “We want every kid who finishes a JIMMY Book to say: ‘PLEASE GIVE ME ANOTHER BOOK.'” He has donated more than one million books to students and soldiers and has over four hundred Teacher Education Scholarships at 24 colleges and universities. He has also donated millions to independent bookstores and school libraries. Patterson will be investing proceeds from the sales of JIMMY Patterson Books in pro-reading initiatives.

Review of Saving the World and Other Extreme Sports by James Patterson

Saving the World and Other Extreme Sports
A Maximum Ride Novel (Book 3)
By James Patterson

Star Rating: 
Genre: Young Adult, Young Adult Sci-Fi, Young Adult Fantasy
Number of Pages: 431

Date Started: November 8, 2016
Date Finished: November 10, 2016

Synopsis: (From Amazon)james-patterson-saving-the-world-and-other-extreme-sports
In MAXIMUM RIDE: SAVING THE WORLD AND OTHER EXTREME SPORTS, the time has arrived for Max and her winged “Flock” to face their ultimate enemy and discover their original purpose: to defeat the takeover of “Re-evolution”, a sinister experiment to re-engineer a select population into a scientifically superior master race…and to terminate the rest. Max, Fang, Iggy, Nudge, Gasman, and Angel have always worked together to defeat the forces working against them–but can they save the world when they are torn apart, living in hiding and captivity, halfway across the globe from one another?

Review:
This book is full of very realistic feelings of our flock towards what they are up against.  Tensions are high and the flock is on edge wondering why someone would want to end them, and end the world.  There are very realistic relationship developments through this novel, with characters having to step aside and pause because they are unsure of what they should be doing– something that everyone should feel is okay to do in a tense situation.

Stronger united, no one wants the flock to split apart, and they realize how much of a liability it can be.  Another great lesson one learns from this book is that children have power.  Being young doesn’t mean you don’t have a voice.

I just realized this book isn’t listed as YA on Amazon, but I can assure that is its classification.

This book is a great continuation of the last book, and the wonderful ending makes me wonder what is in store for the flock in book 4 and on.

618wcp0vm9l-_ux250_Author Biography: (From Amazon)
James Patterson received the Literarian Award for Outstanding Service to the American Literary Community at the 2015 National Book Awards. His other awards include two Emmys, the Edgar Award, and the Children’s Choice Award for Author of the Year. He is a tireless champion of the power of books and reading, exemplified by his new children’s book imprint, JIMMY Patterson, whose mission is simple: “We want every kid who finishes a JIMMY Book to say: ‘PLEASE GIVE ME ANOTHER BOOK.'” He has donated more than one million books to students and soldiers and has over four hundred Teacher Education Scholarships at 24 colleges and universities. He has also donated millions to independent bookstores and school libraries. Patterson will be investing proceeds from the sales of JIMMY Patterson Books in pro-reading initiatives.

Review of School’s Out – Forever by James Patterson

School’s Out – Forever
A Maximum Ride Novel (Book 2)
By James Patterson

Star Rating: 
Genre: Young Adult, Young Adult Sci-Fi, Young Adult Fantasy
Number of Pages: 448

Date Started: November 7, 2016
Date Finished: November 8, 2016

Synopsis: (From Amazon)c7c07bc87f36b238f3d257ff5d1dee20
Fourteen-year-old Maximum Ride and the other members of the “Flock”–Fang, Iggy, Nudge, Gasman and Angel–are just like ordinary kids–only they have wings and can fly. It seems like a dream come true–except that they’re being hunted by half-human, half-wolf “Erasers” who can fly, too.

In Book 2 of the series, the Flock members are taken under the wing of an FBI agent and try to live “normal” lives by going to school, making friends–and continuing their relentless search for their parents. But the Erasers return, forcing the Flock to abandon their search and make their escape once again. The voice inside Max’s head keeps telling her that it’s up to her to save the world, but this is especially challenging to do when she is faced with her ultimate match: a newer and better version of herself, Maximum Ride II. Max’s heart-stopping quest to investigate the mind-blowing mystery of her ultimate destiny continues in the scariest, strangest, and funniest James Patterson novel yet.

Review:
This book does so well at showcasing what most adolescents want in life: freedom, fun, security.  Max is like most other teenagers, uncertain of herself, unsure what she is doing and how to get there, yet with the added fantasy elements of her amazing life.  This book also shows that adults often underestimate the abilities and desires of younger people, disregarding how capable they can be, and what they would be willing to do to get what they think they need to feel whole.

The characters really drove this book more than the action, in my opinion.  The issues of trust were very well laid, especially trusting yourself/your instincts versus people you’re uncertain of.  Everyone has a point in time when they aren’t sure they can trust others, or what they are doing.

Though the fantasy parts of this novel are random sprinkled about, the humanizing and deep characterization of our flock makes this book more than worth the read.

 

618wcp0vm9l-_ux250_Author Biography: (From Amazon)
James Patterson received the Literarian Award for Outstanding Service to the American Literary Community at the 2015 National Book Awards. His other awards include two Emmys, the Edgar Award, and the Children’s Choice Award for Author of the Year. He is a tireless champion of the power of books and reading, exemplified by his new children’s book imprint, JIMMY Patterson, whose mission is simple: “We want every kid who finishes a JIMMY Book to say: ‘PLEASE GIVE ME ANOTHER BOOK.'” He has donated more than one million books to students and soldiers and has over four hundred Teacher Education Scholarships at 24 colleges and universities. He has also donated millions to independent bookstores and school libraries. Patterson will be investing proceeds from the sales of JIMMY Patterson Books in pro-reading initiatives.

Review of A Conspiracy of Alchemists by Liesel Schwarz

A Conspiracy of Alchemists
The Chronicles of Light and Shadow Book 1
By Liesel Schwarz

Star Rating: 
Genre: Fantasy/Steampunk
Number of Pages: 432

Date Started: November 3, 2016
Date Finished: November 7, 2016

Synopsis: (From Amazon)15849472
LEAVE IT TO CHANCE. Eleanor “Elle” Chance, that is—the intrepid heroine of this edgy new series that transforms elements of urban fantasy, historical adventure, and paranormal romance into pure storytelling gold.

In a Golden Age where spark reactors power the airways, and creatures of Light and Shadow walk openly among us, a deadly game of Alchemists and Warlocks has begun.

When an unusual cargo drags airship-pilot Elle Chance into the affairs of the mysterious Mr. Marsh, she must confront her destiny and do everything in her power to stop the Alchemists from unleashing a magical apocalypse.

Review:
You’ll never believe how I happened upon this book.  I found this, in hardcover, for sale in the dollar store.  Not your usual dollar store find.  Looked interesting, so of course I’m going to purchase it!  I certainly got more than a dollar’s worth of entertainment from it.

From the beginning Elle was interesting, but she didn’t have a strong personality, and was far too wishy-washy for my personal tastes.  She was quick to anger, but far too easy to apease.  I wish that Elle’s thoughts and feelings were gathered organically instead of being very stark and sudden in most cases.

The source of power was interesting, and the bits of added in Roman/Greek mythology were quite intriguing, though I, like Elle, found how the power transferred slowly and the three stages were kind of odd.  I found Marsh a far deeper and empathetic character in most situations.  Although I wish there had been more time spent on rounding out Elle’s character, instead of making her seem like a hotheaded spoiled brat, Marsh’s characterization almost made up for it.

If not for the age of the characters, I would likely place this book within the young adult genre.  There were several times that I was uncertain why Schwarz decided to use higher language than the rest of the novel seemed to be written in, though it did not personally hurt my reading, it may hurt others.  All in all, I did enjoy this book, and intend to read the rest in the series

Author Biography: (From Amazon)
There is nothing about Liesel on Amazon, therefore, there will not be anything here, either.

Pas de Deux – Available for Pre-order

Now available for pre-order on kindle, Amy S. Brown’s debut novel, Pas de Deux.
Kindle Release: November 18, 2016. Paperback to follow.

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Elena Gleason is driven. She’s spent countless hours of her seventeen years honing her abilities to become a ballerina in the New York City Ballet. Yet when she is whisked off to a remote manor house by a magical locket, and trapped with a dark haired stranger, Elena realizes more than her future in ballet is at stake. Anastasios has lost his spark, and is searching for a muse to infuse his spirit when Elena falls into his life. Skeptical of Anastasios’s claims, Elena continues to seek a way out of the manor, and learns the perils of his profession. Despite knowing the risks, Elena won’t stop fighting for the future she wants.

 

I’ve been diligently working on Pas de Deux for years.  It’s gone through many changes, and I’m quite pleased with what it has become.  I hope that many of you enjoy inhabiting the world of Elena and Anastasios as much as I do.

The Pas de Deux tab on the far right will now take you first to an information page about this novel, with the drop down link taking you to the posts I’ve put up about this novel and a small bit of the process I’ve gone through to get it where it is today.