Thursday, February 28, 2013

Review: Shadow and Light

Shadow and Light
Shadow and Light by Jonathan Rabb

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Please note: I read this book in January, 2009 from a copy of the book I received from Amazon Vine in exchange for an honest review. This is that review, written in January 2009.

About the book: Set in 1927 Berlin, this is Germany as few have witnessed it. Decadent in an almost desperate way, grasping at whatever it can hold on to, and still reeling from being made scapegoat of WWI, its citizens distract themselves however they can.

My Synopsis: Out at the Ufa film studios, something is happening that is being held secret, and it is up to Nikolai Hoffner, Kriminal-Oberkommissar for Berlin's Kriminalpolezei, to discover what it is and why it has led to the death of an executive named Gerhard Thyssen, and what it has to do with sexually-themed movies, sound on film, the rise of the SA, the arrival of an American talent agent for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and his two sons. Georg has dropped out of school to work for Ufa and Sacha ... well, Sacha is angry and we all know what angry Germans tended to do during that time frame.

More about the Story: Hoffner involves Fritz Lang, Alby Pimm (leader of the most powerful crime syndicate in Berlin) and the American woman - Helen (Leni) Coyle as he tries to get to the bottom of the many threads woven into the tangled web of intrigues in this book. By the end the reader almost needs a notebook of his or her own to keep up, but it is a lot of fun to get there. While Hoffner is a morose man - for quite understandable reasons - he also tends to have some very witty dialogue, and the same goes for Lang and Pimm. The author - Jonathan Rabb - has a dark sense of humor that keeps the book from drowning the reader in the darkness engulfing many of the characters and many was the time where I laughed out loud while reading it. I am definitely going to be finding more of his stuff - and if I had known that Rosa was the book before this, I probably would have run out and bought it and read it first - but I'll get it soon, believe me! My husband took a look at the back of the book and said "Oh - the first book is about Rosa Luxembourg?" so I'm very excited to see how Rabb takes this historical event and turns it into a novel.

My Final Thoughts: I can definitely give this a thumb's up for crime noir, historical fiction, or mystery lovers. There is a lot more to this book, but it is a little hard to define. Give it a chance - I don't think you will regret it - it is a great book.

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Review: Backup

Backup by Jim Butcher

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Please note: This novelette is also part of the anthology Side Jobs, which is where I read it.

My Thoughts: Like the fun short story "Even Hand", this story is not told from Harry's point of view. Instead, we hear from Thomas. This is a very important story. In it we learn more about Thomas and the White Court, and about the existence of the Venatori and the Oblivion War. We also get a glimpse into Justine, which provides a bit more information about the reactions she had to Marcone, and why Marcone called her Agent in "Even Hand." Don't miss it!

Synopsis: Let's get something clear right up front. I'm not Harry Dresden. Harry's a wizard. A genuine, honest-to-goodness wizard. He's Gandalf on crack and an IV of Red Bull, with a big leather coat and a .44 revolver in his pocket. He'll spit in the eye of gods and demons alike if he thinks it needs to be done, and to hell with the consequences--and yet somehow my little brother manages to remain a decent human being. I'll be damned if I know how. But then, I'll be damned regardless. My name is Thomas Raith, and I'm a monster. So begins "Backup" a twelve thousand word novelette set in Jim Butcher's ultra-popular Dresden Files series. This time Harry's in trouble he knows nothing about, and it's up to his big brother Thomas to track him down and solve those little life-threatening difficulties without his little brother even noticing.

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Review: The Neuropathology of Zombies

The Neuropathology of Zombies
The Neuropathology of Zombies by Peter Cummings

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Please note: I read this book November 27, 2011 from a copy of the book I purchased for myself, as part of a group read. I'm just adding formatting.

My Synopsis: A sleepy, small island off the coast of South America – the perfect vacation spot for people all around the world. Police officers Ramos and Morales have the duty of keeping an eye on the market bazaar – there is never any problem there. The only crime on this island is involved with the drug trade, and the cartel keep their business out of the town, in the caves along the coast. Today is different, however – today Ramos and Morales get called to a domestic violence call at the Marina Star hotel, where they make a grisly discovery: a man has literally ripped his wife to pieces! While they try to process this, the man comes from farther in the room and attacks – biting Ramos in the process. While trying to deal with this, Morales hears reports of more attacks all over the hotel – and now he hears screams coming from the beach and surrounding areas. What is going on?

New Hampshire – Dr. Hawk is a respected neuropathologist. He is astounded to find two Marines on his doorstep one day, telling him he needs to come with them. His country needs him. He discovers that a strange disease is raging out of control on a South American island and the symptoms seem to be consistent with zombie behavior. Because Dr. Hawk once gave a joke lecture on the neuropathology of zombies to a group of students and interns, he is the expert in these matters. Can he figure out what is happening to these people, stop the progression of the disease, find the vector – can he stop the zombie apocalypse?

My Thoughts: Overall I liked the story a lot. It has a good pacing – intense action sequences slotted between the very interesting scientific aspects of the search for the cause of the disease. I think the story does a pretty good job of giving us a good idea of the unreality of the situation, and how people might actually react in these circumstances. At one point, for instance, I found myself thinking along the lines of wanting the characters in the book to just start shooting, but upon thinking about it, I believe most people – when faced with a situation like the one outlined at the moment – would have reacted just like the people in the book. It is NOT your typical zombie book; that is certain! It is possible that some readers might get bogged down in the scientific explanation and information, but I found it fascinating. I really liked the direction the writer went with on this one. My only complaint is about the editing – it is just awful, truly. I challenge anyone to name any given page in the book on which I would NOT be able to find some sort of editing error, be it misused words, misused apostrophes, missing words, extra words … It was bad enough to make me take off a star, and I try to be generous about these sorts of things nowadays. Other than that, for those who enjoy horror novels, novels about things that go bump in the night, and stories about zombies, I think you will find this one to your taste. I think we’ll be seeing Dr. Hawk again – I hope he’ll be examining the scientific basis of many more of our favorite monsters!

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Review: Changes

Changes by Jim Butcher

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Book Info: Genre: Urban Fantasy
Reading Level: Adult
Recommended for: Fans of Urban Fantasy

Please note: If you are reading this anywhere but Goodreads, the spoilers will be removed. On Goodreads, the spoilers will be under tags.

Short Stories Reviews: First, before reading Changes, I read a short story called “Even Hand" from an anthology. This story... oh, wonder of wonders, this story is told from the point of view of Marcone! Lovely, lovely! I love Marcone! We learn a bit more about the inner workings of the man in this book, and I loved every moment of it. For example, this is his way of dealing with the rampant destruction that Dresden tends to bring to his location: “After a few visits from Dresden and his ilk, I had invested in cheap, light doors at dramatic (as opposed to tactical) entry points.” That’s all I can tell you; it’s a short story, and I don’t want to spoil it for you, but it was awesome!

Now, then, moving on to Changes...

My Thoughts: You will notice that below, the end of the synopsis is under a spoiler tag. While the “spoiler” is revealed in the very first sentence of the book, it’s major, and I don’t want anyone who hasn’t already read this book to not be surprised, if that makes any sense?

The interesting thing is that I read this book before, but reading it this time, it was as though I had not. I could not remember any of it (well, no, I remembered the main spoilerific bits, but the details? Completely gone). I think because it was so hard for Harry. Everything that could possibly go wrong did in this book, and it was hard to read. I know this book turned a lot of people off of the Dresden files, and even more after Ghost Story (or so I have heard), which I think is a pity. So many threads are coming together now, so many details from the start of the series are starting to coalesce into the reasons behind things, and that’s really neat to watch.

Harry loses a lot of things in this book. The Blue Beetle. His apartment. His freedom. His integrity. Susan. In the end, his life (sorta). But he gains things, too. A daughter, most importantly. His mother’s ruby, which provides him the information and access to her knowledge of the Ways. But... this book is hard. I wanted to cry so many times while reading it. It just broke my heart. But at the same time... it’s important. And I think the next will be even more so...

Now, this completes my re-reading of the books in the Dresden Files I have already read. The next three (Side Jobs, Ghost Story and Cold Days) are all books that will be new to me, and I’m very excited to read them! Don’t expect to hear much from me while I finally settle down to read them.

Disclosure: I purchased this book in hardcover for myself, and backup e-book copy. All opinions are my own.

Synopsis: Long ago, Susan Rodriguez was Harry Dresden's lover—until she was attacked and left struggling with the bloodlust of the vampiric Red Court. Now, she needs Harry's help. Harry's enemies have found the secret she has hidden for so long, and he will have to unleash the full fury of his untapped power.

Because this time, he's fighting to save his "child."

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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

T.J. Hawk Presents: The Adventures of Jocker and Bivy

If you like Roald Dahl, Judy Blume, or Beverly Cleary, you'll love The Adventures of Jocker & Bivy!

Books in the Series:

**The Adventures of Jocker & Bivy: Saving Upworld (Book #1)

**The Adventures of Jocker & Bivy: Return to Upworld (Book #2)

**The Adventures of Jocker & Bivy: Doom in the Desert (Book #3)

This month was a very busy month for me, editing wise.  These three books are among the books I edited just last week!  They are absolutely adorable stories, featuring animals, and I worked with the author to keep the animals somewhat realistic while maintaining the sense of fun and fantasy in these stories.  I have linked each of the books for your convenience, and they are currently only 99 cents apiece, so if you have young readers, or are yourself young at heart, be sure to check them out.  You won't be disappointed!

Review: Turn Coat

Turn Coat
Turn Coat by Jim Butcher

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Book Info: Genre: Urban Fantasy
Reading Level: Adult
Recommended for: Fans of Urban Fantasy

Short Stories Reviews: First, before reading Turn Coat, I read two of the short stories from the anthologies, “Curses” and “AAAA Wizardry,” since I had PDF copies of them. “Curses” is basically about someone hiring Dresden on behalf of a corporation to try to remove a curse. Can’t say more than that without ruining it, but it’s a fun story. I absolutely love the Welsh folklore that is used in the story, and recommend you read it if you have a chance. It won’t take you long, although the whole anthology might... “AAAA Wizardry” is about Harry teaching a class to up-and-coming new Wardens about how to investigate various supernatural threats. It alternates with a story dealing with a threat to a member of Paranet by way of explanation of the theories Dresden is teaching. Quite interesting story, very well-done. It also explains why you should use salt, and not sugar, to make your magic circles on the floor, just in case you were wondering. You’re missing a lot in the Dresden-verse, I think, when you’re missing the shorts, which is why most of the anthologies containing Dresden stories are on my wishlists, but I only have one of them at this time, so I was happy to find these shorts for now.

Now, then, moving on to Turn Coat...

My Thoughts: This book always outrages me in the beginning. I mean, the gall of Morgan, after all these years of treating Harry like scum, to come crawling to him like that? Harry is a much better person than I am, I’ll tell you that. I know that Harry has a better understanding as to why Morgan does what he does, but geez... Everytime Harry leaves the house in this book, he comes back to find Morgan and Molly at each others’ throats (which is actually sort of funny). But at the end of the book, Morgan breaks my heart. I can’t really say more than that, but... read it. You’ll see.

Senior Council member Listens to Wind (aka Injun Joe) is a really impressive dude. For example:
Injun Joe was generally regarded as the most skilled healer on the White Council, and maybe in the world. He had earned doctoral degrees in medicine from twenty universities over the years, and he went back to school every decade or two to help him stay current with modern practice.” That is dedication! Imagine the work he has put into this. Imagine going to medical school twenty times! Dedication. Impressive.

This book is sort of a turning point for a lot of the characters. I was practically in tears. The next one... the next one has to be read to be believed. Don’t miss it!

Disclosure: I purchased this book in hardcover for myself, and backup e-book copy. All opinions are my own.

Synopsis: When it comes to the magical ruling body known as the White Council, Harry keeps his nose clean and his head down. For years, the Council has held a death mark over Harry's head. He's still thought of as a black sheep by some;and as a sacrificial lamb by others. But none regard him with more suspicion and disdain than Morgan, a veteran Warden with a grudge against anyone who bends the rules.

Like Harry.

So when Morgan turns up asking for help, Harry isn't exactly eager to leap into action. Morgan has been accused of treason against the White Council;and there's only one final punishment for that crime. he's on the run, he wants his name cleared, and he needs someone with a knack for backing the underdog.

Like Harry.

Now Harry must uncover a traitor within the Council, keep a less than agreeable Morgan under wraps, and avoid coming under scrutiny himself. And a single mistake may cost someone his head.

Like Harry...

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Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Review: Small Favor

Small Favor
Small Favor by Jim Butcher

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Book Info: Genre: Urban Fantasy
Reading Level: Adult
Recommended for: Fans of Urban Fantasy

My Thoughts: The Dresden Files books that deal with the Sidhe always amuse me. I can’t say why I find them particularly amusing, other than Butcher does a fabulous job of following the traditional faery lore, but I tend to enjoy these the most.

I loved Sanya’s reaction to Murphy. “I like her... she is tiny, but fierce.” Tiny but fierce women seem to appeal to Russians, as least based upon my limited experience of my tiny but fierce Russian mother-in-law, who is also on her third husband, and whom I quite adore. Sanya’s descriptions of what it’s like to be a black man in Russia are right on; my husband says there are hardly any. (And no one call me on the PC bandwagon; you can’t call a black Russian an African-American. Maybe an African-Russian? *shrug* But not all black people are of African descent, you know—he might be Moorish for all I know—and I can’t make any sort of stab at Sanya’s genealogy, so I just have to go with that.)

I also enjoyed the gruffs. Those are some cool faeries, I tell ya, especially Elder Brother and Eldest Brother Gruff. We also learn more about the Denarians, Archangels, the Knights of the Cross... Butcher’s world is very complex, and it’s coming together nicely now. Folks who haven’t read the full series might miss some of these details, but I’m enjoying watching it all ratchet together like a jigsaw puzzle. Great stuff.

Disclosure: I purchased this book in hardcover for myself, and backup e-book copy. All opinions are my own.

Synopsis: Harry Dresden's life finally seems to be calming down-until a shadow from the past returns. Mab, monarch of the Sidhe Winter Court, calls in an old favor from Harry—one small favor that will trap him between a nightmarish foe and an equally deadly ally, and that will strain his skills—and loyalties—to their very limits.

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Monday, February 25, 2013

TeamNerd Reviews and Annabell Cadiz Present: Guest Post, Blog Tour and Giveaway!

TeamNerd Reviews Presents: Lucifer Blog Tour
February 11-March 1, 2013

A Different Type of Supernatural

Author Annabell Cadiz discusses why she created her own supernatural creatures for the Sons of Old Trilogy.

When I had first approached writing LUCIFER, the first book in the SONS OF OLD TRILOGY, I had filled the book with vampires. Now, I’m not a HUGE fan of vampires. I like the way Anne Rice approached writing vampires and Stephen King. But vampires have never fully made sense to me. They are basically walking corpses. The only element that separates them from zombies is that they can talk coherently and don’t eat human brains (as far as I have read any way).

Since I needed a supernatural creature for my book and werewolves weren’t really going to work for what I was doing with the plot, I decided to use vampires. But I wanted to find a way to change the vampires from how they are usually written. With the vampires in SONS OF OLD I gave them a heartbeat, blood circulation, all human like qualities except for the incredible strength, speed, ability to suck out a human’s soul and a hobby of drinking blood. Where the usual vampire cannot survive without killing humans, my vampires were very much alive, just enjoyed committing evil acts.

After I had written the first two drafts, I was still contemplating what I wanted to do with my supernatural creatures in the SONS OF OLD TRILOGY. All the way through writing the first two drafts, I kept having the nagging thought in the back of mind of needing to figure out a way to change the type of supernatural creatures I had, I just didn’t know HOW to go about doing that.
When I had finished the third draft to LUCIFER and had gone into editing, I finally decided it’s time to figure out a way to change the supernatural creatures, so I started looking up words and meanings for the type of power my supernaturals have and words that fit what they are. I spent about four hours pitching possible names back and forth with my best friend Eve until I finally settled on the names I wanted to use.

I-ma-go /iˈmāgō/: Image or Reflection. I chose the word Imago because of the symbolic meaning it holds with the skin an Imago possesses. During the day, an Imago looks as normal as any human being, except they can move ten times faster than a human and have ten times more strength. At night their skin turns to silver due to their connection to the moon. Since the moon controls the tides of the ocean I had put two and two together and figured the skin of an Imago could reflect that power, especially because an Imago has the power to control the element of water since this particular supernatural creature was born from a fallen angel and a mermaid who had fallen in love.

In LUCIFER readers will meet rogue Imagoes. A rogue Imago has earned the title by being exiled from the Celeste Kingdom—the kingdom Imagoes call home—through committing an act against the kingdom. Or a rogue Imago was born in the human world but does not want to live in the Celeste Kingdom. Rogue Imagoes are cut off from the magic of the kingdom, so they can no longer control the element of water. They are still able to possess incredible strength and power as well as speed and use glamour to hide the color of their skin.

(Picture of Actor Bryton James who would be a great fit for the role of Rekesh)

There are a few Imagoes the reader will meet in LUCIFER and one of the more important ones is Rekesh Saint-Louis. He is the most powerful Imago leader in South Florida. He stands at six feet two inches in height with long limbs that glow silver when touched by the moonlight. He has a head full of thick dark brown hair and chocolate colored eyes set a diamond shaped face with angular cheekbones and full lips. He is always polished, definitely lethal, and way too sexy for his own good!

I also had placed werewolves in LUCIFER but not as a major role. I decided if the vampires were going to change then I might as well change the werewolves, too. In the SONS OF OLD TRILOGY, werewolves weren’t really ever going to play a big role. Their role would come in the follow-up series, the FALLEN ANGELS SERIES. I chose the name Cadtellus (/kad/tel-uhs/).The first part of the name—Cad—is simply the first three letters in my last name. It was an idea given to me by Eve .*wink* The second part of the name is the latin word tellus which means earth or soil.

Cadtellus have the ability to not only control the element of earth but also merge with the wolf who causes them to change, being able to essentially become a wolf. They have ridiculous speed, sense of smell, hearing, and strength. Every Cadtellus has a wolf counterpart.

These supernatural creatures were created from the fallen angel Cathetel. He married a human girl who was bitten by a wolf when she was pregnant and the wolf’s DNA merged with the child. Cathetel became so angry he cursed the existence of wolves and poisoned any wolf he could find with his power. It backfired though because any human one of the wolves bit would be turned into a Cadtellus. Cathetel was ordered by the Seraphim Council—the angels in charge— to locate every wolf who contained his power and return them to the Angel Kingdom.

In LUCIFER readers will meet Dustin, a rogue Cadtellus. A rogue Cadtellus, much like the Imagoes, have been exiled from their kingdom—the Solum Kingdom—or have been born in the human world but choose not to live within the kingdom or have chosen to leave the kingdom.

(Picture of Actor Jesse Williams who would be great as the role of Dustin)

Dustin Michaels stands at five feet ten inches with mocha-colored brown eyes, a head full of thick light-brown hair and well-built body. He has such a sweet bond with his wolf, Bandit, who has a huge personality all his own. Dustin is hell on wheels in fight! I would totally love to have him as a teammate in a battle because he can kick some major butt. He’s got a good heart, mean set of fists, and a quick tongue. He’s a lot of fun ;)

I had a lot of fun creating my own supernatural creatures for the SONS OF OLD TRILOGY and I think readers will have a great time with them, too!

About the Author

Annabell Cadiz was born in the sweltering heat of South Florida. She was raised surrounded by Puerto Rican chefs and band of siblings that weren’t all related to her. A self-proclaimed nerd and book-a-holic (her room does hold much evidence to prove her claims are justifiable), she created TeamNerd Reviews to showcase her EXTREME love for novels where, along with her best friend, Bridget Strahin, she hosts book reviews, interviews, giveaways, Indie Shoutouts and much more. She also blog tour services for authors. She also had the pleasure of being published in three separate issue of Suspense Magazine. She also adores Cinnamon Teddy Grahams, has an addiction to Minute Maid Orange juice, and is a proud Jesus Freak. Lucifer is Annabell’s debut novel and the first book in the Sons of Old Trilogy.

Where to Find the Author

About the Book

(Sons of Old Trilogy, Book 1)
Author: Annabell Cadiz
Genre: New Adult, Urban Fantasy, Paranormal, Supernatural

Synopsis: Have you ever wondered what could be hiding in the shadows?

Well, for eighteen-year-old Zahara Faraday, she doesn’t have to wonder. You see she comes from a lineage of Light Witches, those who have chosen to help protect and serve between the supernatural world and the human world. The only problem is Zahara, like her father Solomon, is as human as a human being can be whereas her mother, Mia, and her Aunt Catalina, were born as Light Witches. As a family they hunt down rogue supernaturals—creatures who harm humans or who have committed an act against their kingdom. 

Zahara’s hunting skills are usually kept dormant since her parents would prefer she live life as a normal human girl without knowledge of the supernatural world. She plans on doing just that—except when she finds a couple being attacked by fairies, she has no choice but to step in. Before she can return to pretending to be blissfully ignorant, Zahara encounters a problem she isn’t the least equip to handle: Bryan Hamilton, the good looking new co-worker she has to help train. In a heartbeat, her best friend, Becca King, has set her up on a double date with herself and her new crush, Rekesh Saint-Louis, who happens to be the most powerful leader of the biggest Imago Coven in South Florida –supernatural creatures with the ability to control water . . . and suck out human souls. 

Zahara has no time to focus on how she’s going to explain her double date with her best friend and the enemy they have a tentative truce with to her parents because soon one of the members of Mia and Catalina’s coven is found murdered with a strange tattoo of a snake with wings carved into his arm.

Zahara is then thrown into a whirlwind battle with an angel determined to have revenge against God, an Imago coven she doesn’t think they should trust, and slew of dream-eating fairies and powerful Nephilims, hybrid children of angels and humans, more than happy to rip her to shreds.

Normal just got a deadlier definition.

Purchase on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.
Get an autograph from Author Annabell Cadiz!




In honor of the two main female leads in LUCIFER, Zahara and Becca, Annabell created a fun swag pack for ONE very lucky winner!

Win a specially made makeup kit by E.L.F along with one DVD copy of the movie Sixteen Candles, a fuschia metallic manicure set, a Girl Power Superwoman wristband, a LOVE IS A BATTLEFIELD silver necklace, a silver bracelet with handcuff & key charms, Honey Sweetheart lotion (that smells INCREDIBLE!), two toned lip bloom (that is SUPER cute!), and gray colored cheetah printed socks that are SOOOO adorables and an ecopy of LUCIFER!

ANNNND if that wasn't enough, FIVE other lucky winners will win a FREE ecopy of LUCIFER!

TWICE a week on MONDAYS & FRIDAYS a new clue from LUCIFER will be posted up. Enter the new clue inside the Rafflecopter every time a new one is posted and get more chances to win!

Stop by the LUCIFER BLOG TOUR page to enter and check for new clues!

New Clue


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E.J. Stevens Presents: Cover Reveal "Ghost Light" book 2 in the Ivy Granger series

Welcome followers of Now is Gone! It's a busy day today, as you'll see. I have two cover reveals, two giveaways, a guest post and a book feature today, so be sure to check out all the doin's! Right now, I'm happy to provide you an early sneak peek at the latest in the Ivy Granger series, Ghost Light, scheduled for release July 9, 2013. Here's some more information to whet your appetite!

Title: Ghost Light
Series: Ivy Granger #2
Author: E.J. Stevens
Imprint: Sacred Oaks Press
Release Date: July 9, 2013
ISBN: 9780984247592
Genre:  Urban Fantasy
Tagline:  Ivy Granger, psychic detective, thought she'd seen it all...until now.

Full Description:

Ivy Granger, psychic detective, thought she'd seen it all...until now.

With a vengeful lamia that only she can see on the city streets, reports of specters walking Harborsmouth cemeteries, and an angry mob of faerie clients at her office door, it's bound to be a long night. Add in an offense against the faerie courts and a few foolish bargains and one thing is clear--Ivy Granger is in some seriously deep trouble.

Ivy Granger is back, gathering clues in the darkest shadows of downtown Harborsmouth. With the lives of multiple clients on the line, she's in a race against time. Ivy finally has a lead to the whereabouts of the one person who can help her control her wisp abilities, but will she put the needs of her clients above her own?

If Ivy doesn't find a solution soon, she could wind up a ghost herself.

GHOST LIGHT is the second novel in the bestselling Ivy Granger urban fantasy series by E.J. Stevens. 

I read the first novel in this series, Shadow Sight, and the novella, Blood and Mistletoe, last year. You can read my review of the former here, and the latter here. This is really outstanding urban fantasy, and I can't wait to read the next one in the series. Until then... always keep cold iron in your pocket, and an eye on your back!

Blogversary Bonus Giveaway: Saga of the New Gods: "Be Careful What you Wish For" by Daniel Black

Followers of Now is Gone may remember that I recently unveiled the new cover for Daniel Black's first book in the Saga of the New Gods, Be Careful What you Wish For, which combines the original first two books (Be Careful What you Wish For and The Horror of Magic) into one book. That book is now live on Smashwords, and you can go there and pick it up by following the link on the title or the cover image to the left. HOWEVER... Because it's my blogversary, I'm going to give away five (5) copies of this e-book to my followers! You'll receive a Smashwords coupon if you are one of the lucky winners. These are books I edited, and they are good. In fact, you can see my review for the first one (the original first one) here, because I read and reviewed the book before I edited it the first time. You can see my review for the second part of the book (the original second book) here, which I wrote after I edited it.

Anyway, without further ado, here is the giveaway. I'll draw my five winners in a week! While you're here, this is a busy day. Check out my two cover reveals, guest post, book feature, and other giveaway while you're here! You can find links to the right, in the post listing.

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"Out & Equal" Giveaway!

In conjunction with the Out & Equal blog tour (see separate posts here and here), JKS Communications is offering an e-book copy of Out & Equal to one winner from this blog! Fill out the Rafflecopter form below to sign up, and in a week I'll pick a winner and notify you via e-mail that you have won! Best of luck!

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JKS Communications Presents: Book Feature "Out & Equal" edited by Selisse Berry

I will be reading and reviewing this book in the middle of March.  In the meantime, be sure to also see my separate guest post from Selisse Berry.



Paperback: $14.95, eBook: $?.??
ISBN: 978-0-9881898-0-5
Nonfiction, 214 pages
Out & Equal Workplace Advocates February 14, 2013

A major transformation is happening in today’s workplace. This groundbreaking anthology chronicles personal narratives from lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and allied executive trailblazers who have conquered adversity and ushered in policies that affirm and support the LGBT community in the workplace. Out & Equal at Work profiles an advocacy organization located at the intersection of the private sector and the broader social movement: Out & Equal Workplace Advocates, and its visionary Founding Executive Director, Selisse Berry.

   Twitter @OutandEqual     Facebook Out & Equal Workplace Advocates

Praise for Out & Equal at Work

“Out & Equal at Work speaks to the power of cultivating an environment that celebrates diversity, and ensures employees can bring their whole selves to work every day. Not only is this the right thing to do, but I believe it has profound benefits on employee engagement, retention, productivity and, ultimately, business results. Sexual orientation and gender identity are differences that should not matter. The only things that truly matter are the content of one’s character and the unique talent a person brings to the organization.”
– Don Knauss, Clorox CEO

“There are business books that reinforce the business imperative of diversity. This book is not just one of those. It’s a collection of authentic stories from real people — authentic, successful role models — whose stories are both moving and educational. More than that, they’re inspirational, because they demonstrate how LGBT employees can contribute and prosper at the highest levels in the inclusive workplace.”
– Harry van Dorenmalen, Chairman, IBM Europe

“Every American deserves to be treated fairly and equally in and out of the workplace. Out & Equal at Work is both educational and inspirational for employers and employees regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. With moving personal stories, Out & Equal at Work puts a human face on the benefits of diversity in the workplace and the rewards of being open and honest about who we are.”
– Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin (D-WI)

“Part of the way we each find the strength to bring our whole lives into the workplace is to learn about the experience of others who have taken that step. We not only can succeed, but we can contribute to the work environment in a more substantive way and lead a more fulfilling life. These stories of leadership and courage serve as a real inspiration.”
– Rick Welts, Chief Operating Officer, Golden State Warriors

“These are the stories that executives around the world should hear, coming from the brave voices of smart, successful executives who are making important contributions in business, in government and in the ways they conduct their lives with dignity and integrity. Even more so, these are the stories that all companies should want to be part of, showcasing how creating inclusive workplaces equates with creating a business culture where all of us can bring our mind and heart to work.”
– Sophie Vandebroek, Xerox Corporate Vice President

“When I started my career at Ford Motor Company, and ultimately served as Ford’s Vice Chairman, what strength and insight Out & Equal at Work would have offered. Each personal narrative here is a reminder how important it is to celebrate diversity and openness in every workplace — and to lead by example.”
– Allan Gilmour, former Vice Chairman, Ford Motor Company and President, Wayne State University

“The aim of the Nation’s best employers is to implement policies that make every workplace as equal, welcoming and purposeful as it can be. Selisse Berry’s new book, Out & Equal at Work, will help managers and employers everywhere understand why these fair-minded values make a real and lasting difference.”
– The Honorable John Berry

Biography of Selisse Berry
Editor of Out & Equal at Work

Selisse Berry is Founding Executive Director of Out & Equal Workplace Advocates. Under her leadership, the organization has grown significantly with dramatic increases in attendance at the annual Workplace Summit and the expansion of programs and global initiatives. Selisse is a frequent speaker on workplace equality and has spoken across the United States and abroad including recent presentations in the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Italy, Canada, Hungary, the West Indies, and Mexico. Her most recent awards include the Outstanding Hero Congressional Recognition from Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi; the Parks Award* in Rome, Italy; and the KQED Local Heroes Award** in San Francisco, California.  Selisse is the editor of Out & Equal at Work:  From Closet to Corner Office, Out & Equal’s new anthology of personal stories of executive trailblazers who have transformed the workplace for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people.

Selisse’s clear and unwavering vision has been instrumental in creating an international organization whose philosophy reflects the importance of treating all colleagues in the workplace with respect and dignity. Since her first job as a guidance counselor, Selisse has continued her commitment to justice as a teacher and as a leader of several social service organizations prior to founding Out & Equal Workplace Advocates. She has master’s degrees in education and theology from the University of Texas and San Francisco Theological Seminary respectively. Selisse and her wife, Cynthia Martin, were legally married in California in 2008.

*The Parks Award was given by Parks – liberi e uguali, a nonprofit organization advocating for LGBT workplace equality in Italy.
**The KQED Local Heroes Award was given by a public television station.


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JKS Communications Presents: Guest Post by Selisse Berry of Out & Equal Workplace Advocates

Today I welcome Selisse Berry to Now is Gone.  Selisse is an advocate for GLBTQ rights in the workplace, and founded Out & Equal Workplace Advocates.  I will be separately featuring information about her book, Out and Equal, and at the bottom of her guest post here, I will be providing some information about Out & Equal Workplace Advocates.  I will also be reading and reviewing Out & Equal in the middle of March, so I will post links from that review back to these posts at that time.  Without further ado:

             I first realized that I am a lesbian when I was studying in seminary to become a Presbyterian minister. I quickly learned that, if I came out and chose to live my life honestly and openly, I would not be allowed to be ordained as a minister. I had to leave a career that I loved simply because of my sexual orientation.  

From that point forward, I dedicated my life to creating workplace equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people in the workplace, with the hope that one day people will no longer have to choose between a career they love and living their lives with authenticity and integrity. My own experience inspired me to found Out & Equal Workplace Advocates sixteen years ago to advance workplace equality for LGBT people. Over the years, Out & Equal has grown into an international nonprofit organization working with multinational corporations, executives, employee resource group leaders, and diversity professionals to create more inclusive workplaces. Through this work, I met many senior executives and leaders who have driven real change in the corporations where they work. They each had touching personal stories of being lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and allies.  

I realized that their stories were history in the making, and this inspired me to write Out & Equal at Work: From Closet to Corner Office. I knew that the stories had to be told, and so I reached out to senior executives from some of the world’s top corporations, inviting them to join me in sharing our stories. I was so honored with the results – that so many powerful people were happy to share their stories - including the CEO of Intuit, who is an important ally to the LGBT community, and openly LGBT senior executives from the Walt Disney Company, the Clorox Company, Campbell Soup, Merck, IBM, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Deloitte, Wells Fargo, and many other top corporations.

Out & Equal at Work is the first time that business leaders, including C-Suite executives from Fortune 500 Companies have come together to share their personal stories of facing discrimination and forwarding LGBT equality in the workplace. In many ways it is a book that reminds us that it really does get better. And, although things have improved, there is still so much to do. In 29 states, anyone can be fired simply for being lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender, and there are still some countries that punish LGBT people with the death penalty.

I hope that Out & Equal at Work will inspire people, including you, to become involved in Out & Equal’s efforts to expand workplace equality. There are many ways to become involved with Out & Equal: our headline events like the Workplace Summit, the annual LGBT Executive Forum and Momentum Leadership Celebration, local Regional Affiliate events, and training for your organization. We also host free monthly Town Call webinars, maintaining the world's largest registry of LGBT employee resource groups which connects LGBT employee resource group leaders from around the world. Contact with any questions.

Copies of Out & Equal at Work can be purchased online, or via Amazon for electronic versions.

Out & Equal Workplace Advocates

Founded by Executive Director Selisse Berry, Out & Equal Workplace Advocates is the world’s largest nonprofit organization specifically dedicated to creating safe and equitable workplaces for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.

The organization has grown significantly with dramatic increases in attendance for the annual Workplace Summit, the expansion of regional affiliates across the United States, and many global initiatives. Out & Equal has created numerous programs to advance its mission, including the first Global Summit in London, the annual Out & Equal Workplace Summit, the LGBT Executive Forum and Leadership Celebration, bimonthly Town Call seminars and the world’s largest registry of LGBT Employee Resource Groups.

Out & Equal is committed to creating safe and equitable workplace environments for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender employees. We believe that people should be judged by the work they do, not by their sexual orientation or gender identity. Every day, we work to protect and empower employees to be productive and successful—so they can support themselves, their families, and contribute to achieving a world free of discrimination for everyone.

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