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Saturday, November 30, 2013

Read November 26, 2013 **One of t'irla's 2013 Best Reads!!!**

Wow! I'm almost at a loss for words and that is saying something. I wish I could remember who recommended this novel so that I can thank them.

This was truly an emotional roller coaster. I chuckled, I got mad, I had my heart tugged, I cried..a few times and through it all a warmth enveloped me and comforted it. This book was an amazing read. Amy Harmon is a new to me author and I am definitely going to have to seek out more of her writing. The way she crafts her characters to create a story is frankly unique.

Fern was achingly ackward, fiercely loyal and totally believable. Ambrose as seen through Fern's eyes was slightly over the top but then what guy seen through the eyes of love isn't? Bailey, *sigh* Bailey was my emotional hero, Amy Harmon created a love triangle that was pure and brave and so sweet it made my heart hurt.

The story was that of love and faith the ability to believe: in God, in yourself, in your friends, in your family and in love. The story was about connections and the power of loss. The loss of friends, the loss of love, the loss of security, the loss of self image and about the ability to come back from loss and have faith. The story was about relationships. The strength of love between family members, between friends, between mentors, between three young people who build an unlikely relationship that brought healing and sorrow.

I can't say enough great things about this novel. Yes, there was a lot of steam between Fern and Ambrose and I would have liked it to go a bit further because the build up and chemistry was so hot it tingled. However, there didn't need to be outright sex to make this story edgy and hawt.

I also have to mention that Amy Harmon writes the most beautiful poetry and her words will leave a mark you will never forget.

I have to give this novel a 5 Bear rating. Any novel that can make you feel all the emotion this one did and leave you feeling warm and fuzzy and just plain feeling good yet dwells on your mind even days later, to me is a classic read and one everyone really needs to experience. Do yourself a favor make Making Faces your next read. 


t'irla's talk tirlastalk.blogspot.ca

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Healer! by B.N. Toler: Blog Hop by Wickedly Good Books!

I recently read a wonderful and unique book by a brand new author and was invited to join my first blog hop.

 Unfortunately due to illness this is a day and half late but would still like to share with you my interview with the lovely B. N. Toler and some excepts from her wonderful book Healer.  Although my review has already appeared here on my blog I wanted to once again share it and remind everyone what a truly unique book this is and how I believe PNR and UF lovers alike will enjoy this first book in The Healer Series.

First let me share a bit about B. N. Toler:

B N Toler's first novel HEALER was released in July 2013. B N Toler lives in Virginia with her husband and three kids and is currently working on HYBRID, the 2nd in the HEALER series. On the side, she is  throwing her hat into the new adult/romance genre and working on a novel she will possibly call Chance.
Her Favourite books are :The Fever series by Karen Marie Moning, The Sookie Stackhouse series by Charlaine Harris, She is also  a big fan of Samatha Young and Sylvia Day.

tt: Hi B.N. Welcome to the 'talk thanks for taking the time to visit with me today. As you already know I am a huge fan of Healer and was lucky enough to read and review it a while back.

 I was concerned when starting the book that it was going to be a Y/A and athough I enjoy N/A characters younger than that don't usually appeal.
In Healer though you actually take the characters through a few years of their lives with twists and turns. I loved the uniqueness of the concept and plot of the book and can't wait for "Hybrid"!

B.N.:Thanks so much for participating in the blog tour and for taking the time with me. I'm ecstatic about all of it! Yes, Healer is a real mind blower. I swear I thought everyone would figure out what was happening by the middle of the book, and I hated that thought. I wanted to blow some minds and so far, the reviews are saying just that. Hybrid is a different beast though. There will be surprise and suspense just like Healer, but it's written all in present tense.

tt: While reading I had a few questions that popped to mind.

> How did you come up with the name Aldo? Especially for a girl?
> (I know we discussed buying shoes there LOL)

B.N.: Allen & Dorothy---These were actually my grandparents names and I always wanted to use the first two initials of their names and name one of my daughters Aldo, but somehow I gave it to the heroine in Healer and that's where it stayed. I love the uniqueness of the name too.

tt:  Florida? Just wondering why this destination when running away?

B.N.: Honestly, I have no idea. I've been a few times in my life and it seemed as good a place as any, but it actually worked out well being that Maela (The Midwife) made her way into the book as a Cuban illegal immigrant.

tt: Who or what was your muse for Healer?

B.N.:Yeesh! So many people have asked me where the idea came from. To tell you the truth, I have no idea because I started Healer sooooo long ago and actually wrote a completely different version of it unlike what I published.

tt: When writing do you go to the internet and try to find a picture of
> characters or just pull them from your imagination? If you just imagine
> them do you mind when readers try to find actors etc that represent the
> characters to them?

B.N.: I pull from my mind, but I have made a dream cast for the characters. I really think Shailene Woodley from The Descendants fits the image perfectly  of Aldo in my mind.

tt:  When deciding to write a paranormal why did you choose healing as the
> "super power" for your characters as opposed to mind reading etc?

B.N.:  I really wanted to bring something new and fresh to the genre while keeping what I love most about it. I have always loved paranormal/fantasy and I wanted to create something people would be able to absorb and enjoy while keeping some of the familiar aspects of the genre. Healing as the super power just seemed unique. I loved that the healers could be turned and still walk in the daylight. It really unfolded well now that I think about it because when I started writing this story there were no blood healers.

tt: I found your cover interesting. Does the tree represent something to
> you? Is the use of black and white with a touch of color just an
> esthetic choice or was there meaning to that?

B.N.: No the tree isn't particularly meaningful to me personally, but I absolutely love Willow trees. They are just so beautiful and elegant. The black and white is a representation of the two worlds Aldo exists with in, conscious and subconscious. I am actually going to change the cover of Healer and will reveal the new cover hopefully in December. The cover for Hybrid will be released shortly after.

tt: Have you always wanted to write? Why did you choose this time in your
> life to put your story into novel form?

B.N.: I have always dabbled with it. More of a hobby. But when I finished Healer I just felt like I needed to share it and believe me even after I let a few people read it, I sent it to edit and there was a lot I had to add and remove. God Bless the editors because we writers can get carried away and they have to bring us back down to earth and tell us like it is.
tt:   I have a question I have wanted to ask a number of authors. Why
> initials vs first name? Is it the anonymity of it or that it isn't as
> easy to identify the author's sex? Or am I just reading way to much
> into it LOL?

B.N.:  Haha. I had a list of 10 different names I thought about using, but couldn't decide. No one would help me either until finally I called my sister-in-law and begged her to help me. She listened to me rattle off the names and just said, "B N Toler". It was as simple as that. I love her. She doesn't pussy foot around. :)

tt:  Finally, is your writing process organic or organized? Meaning does it
> jump to mind and you write or do you plot out your beginning, middle and
> end before putting pen to paper, like a story board?

B.N.:  I'm probably the most unorganized writer that ever walked the face of the planet. I write, re-write, delete, and change so much it's insane. With Healer, there would be weeks where I would not write waiting for an idea and suddenly, BAM! It would hit me. So maybe a little bit of everything is how I get a story down.  I'm really happy with the way Healer turned out. I re-read it sometimes and wonder what I could've added to it or changed, but I still love it..

tt: Thanks so much for spending time with me here on t'irla's talk.

B.N.:  Thanks for having me and I can't wait to see what you think of Hybrid!

B.N.Toler was wonderful to chat with if you are interested in contacting B.N. Toler you can reach out to :

Visit her website

Visit her on Facebook

Visit her on Goodreads

Now an excerpt from Healer!

Have we caught your attention yet??? No?  Ok one more quick excerpt!!

t'irla's talk review of Healer

Read from September 26 to 27, 2013

Amazing Debut for B.N. Toler! A Paranormal series so different from the rest I hate to call it a PNR!


Healers, such as Aldo Lawson understand the power of their gift, although at times, it seems more a curse. Upon meeting a handsome young healer named Thomas, Aldo's life heads into a tailspin. With his arrival, Aldo's aunt, the woman who raised her, is forced to share a hard and scary truth--vampires exist. And not only do they exist, but they thirst for healer blood.

Aldo's world is turned upside down when her aunt is murdered and Thomas disappears. Riddled with questions, she sets out to find him.

Submerged in a world filled with sex and danger, Aldo hopes to find the vampires that will lead her to Thomas. When they find her first, she is forced to piece together truths, deal with her pain, and finds that not everything is what it seems

The Author gave me this book for an honest review. Thanks Ms Toler

My Thoughts:

Wow, where do I start.

Is the book perfect no, it is a first novel by a very new writer however, that being said holy cow! this is a breath of fresh air in the Vampire genre. In fact, it is not so much a Vampire novel as it is a truly paranormal novel. The writing is fabulous and as you keeping reading the novel it gets better and better. Her characters were interesting, in some places sketchy but since this is a 3 part series I think a lot of the blanks will be filled in as we make our way to the ending of book 3. Aldo is an interesting character although at times confusing but confusing in a young girl way. She struggles with her feelings and fears. She has the normal teenage angst and behaves as expected around a cute older guy. Thomas is a mystery from moment one and that is what keep us readers on our toes right until the end and actually even then I was chomping at the bit for the next one.

The book started out writing from Aldo's "present" and then we are faced with chapters bouncing from present to 6 years before. I was a bit confused at first but muddled my way through and got used to it. I wonder if a simple chapter title would make this a smoother transition? Apart from that the story flows with it's bends and twirls and sudden change in direction then twisting once again. I admittedly was finding myself flabbergasted in the last 1/4 of the book. The spins were enough to make me want to read all night.

Starting a world from scratch is difficult for even the most experience authors and even then the first book of the series is often the worst as there is so much to explain. BNT did this seemlessly and using the different points in time as a vehicle to further her plot and keep the story moving.

Brava Ms Toler on an excellent first book and I can't wait for 2014 to read the next book in this trilogy! Toler's name is now in my *watch* list and with writing this good I know her future books will be amazing.

5 stars for this budding author and a standing ovation for the uniquness of the story and the ingenuity used to keep readers surprised. A MUST read this Fall ..don't miss what the buzz is all about read this today:)

Reward for reading to the end:)  3rd excerpt from Healer

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Author Spotlight! Vi Keeland and Review of 'Made For You'

Author Spotlight is a new feature for the 'talk' and I hope you all enjoy it.  It will feature an author that I am truly impressed with and found I have loved not just one but their whole body of work.

As my first Author in the Spotlight I would like to introduce to you all Vi Keeland.

Vi writes contemporary romance with wit and humor bringing her characters to life in a way that makes you want to know them and invite them into your life not just for the length of the book but for a life long friendship.  I was originally introduced to Vi's work through my dear friend The Bookchick With Kick with ' Belong to You' the story of Syd and Jack a couple who couldn't be more different.  From there I discovered 'Worth the Fight' and boy I fell in love with Nico, yes I like his Elle too but Nico was EVERYTHING I love in a book boyfriend, strong yet vunerable, hard yet loving, troubled but redeemable.  Perfect!  I recently have followed up Syd and Jack's story in 'Made For You' (see bottom of page for the review) which gave us a window into their life after the initial "I love yous" and how they coped with a relationship that kept them apart for weeks at a time.  'Belong to You' and 'Made for You' are books 1 and 2 in the 'Cole' series which is a two part look into this unique pair.  I am avidly awaiting Vi's next novel in the 'MMA Fighter" series in which 'Worth the Fight' was book 1, book 2 'Worth the Chance' is due out April 2014 and I can't wait.

A bit about Vi Keeland:
Vi Keeland is a native New Yorker with three children that occupy most of her free time, which she complains about often, but wouldn't change for the world. She is a bookworm and has been known to read her kindle at stop lights, while styling her hair, cleaning, walking, during sporting events, and frequently while pretending to work. She is a boring attorney by day, and an exciting New York Times & USA Today Best Selling smut author by night!

Check out Vi's  website or catch up with her on Twitter  or Facebook 

Review for 'Made for You'

Read on November 01, 2013 —

I adored 'Belong To You' Syd and Jack and 'Made for You' only made me love this couple more!


****** The sequel to Belong to You (Book two of a two part series) *******

Jack and Syd spent a week in paradise. It was only supposed to be a fling. But life can be funny sometimes, and circumstances brought them back together again. Together they seemed to have found their happy ever after. But when Sydney is offered a chance at the career she has always wanted, she must leave Jack behind to follow her dreams. Can their love survive long distance? Sydney’s touring with a man every woman wants, but he only has eyes for Syd. And an unexpected tragedy leaves Jack feeling remorseful. Can the two find a way through to forever?

My Thoughts:

I really enjoyed Jack and Syd as a couple...Vi Keeland really made this couple multi dimensional their personality traits although very different was a great vehicle to showcase how much they loved each other. It is rare that you we as readers get to see how the couple in our love stories do after they actually get together. It was refreshing that VK let Syd still keep her independence and dream even though Jack was very much a dominate who needed to keep her close. Sienna was a fabulous tool to lighten the intense parts of the book. She is so funny and I truly hope that VK gives her a book of her own.

The book was so easy to read I just couldn't put it down. The writing flowed, I admit there were a few editing issues mostly in the beginning of the book that made me had to reread a couple of sections but in the whole skeem of the book it was a minor glitch.

I have to say I loved Syd and Jack's story (Jack is defo a bookboyfriend) and I enjoy Vi Keeland's writing. I have now read 3 of her books and absolutely loved all 3, she have become one of my favorite writers and on my watch list for her next book!

I recommend this book to all of you who love CR with strong characters and a easy read.

4.5 Bears for this wonderful book and a prodding to Vi for Sienna's story!