Sunday, December 22, 2013

...Our Gift To You, Ending Fans...

Ending Series - Delivered Infomercial Style

ATTENTION: THE FOLLOWING IS A SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT

Interested to know more about your favorite Ending characters? 
Want to know what life was like for them the day of the virus outbreak? 

We do! So we're writing about it!
For those of you who loved book one, have already devoured book two, and are weeping, utterly desperate for book three's release in 2014, I have a surprise for you...

...DRUM ROLL, PLEASE...

LF and I are writing you a little something special, our gift to you for the holidays. 

Four perma-Free Ending Series novellas! The first of which is now available!

Starting this month, Lindsey Fairleigh and I will be publishing four FREE  prequel novellas that chronicle what some of our other favorite Ending characters were doing when you-know-what hit the fan and everyone starting getting sick. 

Who's serial is up first? Young, but not so innocent, Carlos.


A virus changed everything. This is how it began.


High school. Dealing drugs. A secret girlfriend. 
Carlos thought his life was hard enough...but then the virus spread.


Read for free:
Amazon (coming soon!)
Kobo (coming soon!)

Thank you for being such absolutely wonderful fans! You're the reason that we do this!
Happy Reading!

Friday, December 6, 2013

...The Rose Garden Book Review...

The Rose Garden, Book Review (Published 2011)
By Susanna Kearsley

LP's Rating: 4/5 stars
Genre: Historical Fantasy/Time Travel

Basic Overview: 
Eva Ward returns to the only place she truly belongs, the old house on the Cornish coast, seeking happiness in memories of childhood summers. There she finds mysterious voices and hidden pathways that sweep her not only into the past, but also into the arms of a man who is not of her time.
But Eva must confront her own ghosts, as well as those of long ago. As she begins to question her place in the present, she comes to realize that she too must decide where she really belongs.


***SPOILER ALERT AHEAD***
My Review. 

What I liked.
The Smuggling Trio. The men of the past, the smuggling trio, are what made the story for me--distant and dangerous at first glance, but truly lovable and endearing beneath the surface. Daniel Butler's reserve, dry humor, and capable persona is what I like to read in a leading man. He's intriguing, the type of guy you want to read more about and that you want to wrap you in his arms and tell you everything will be alright. Along side him is his brother, Jack Butler, who exudes a cocky charisma and unabashed stubbornness you instantly love. Fergal O'Cleary is the big brother you always want to have backing you, who keeps the family together, who's responsible loyal, intelligent, and funny. Overall, the trio is lovable in every way. Loyal to a fault, strong, and witty.

What I didn't like so much.
Eva's character. She isn't described at all so I didn't know who to picture as I'm reading. Plus, she seems young. Not creepy young, but unbelievable-young if Daniel is going to fall so deeply in love with her. Their connection wasn't believe to me.

The beginning. It took until chapter 8 to get into anything engaging that would hold my interest and make me want to read more. That being said, if it wasn't for my book club, I can't say I would have made it that far. I know there was a lot of ground to cover for set up, but I truly feel Kearsley could have done without most of it. The positive side to this is that the chapters weren't super long.

The Ending. Although it was satisfying, I would have liked a little more interaction between Eva and Daniel instead of being left with the allusion that they'd be together.

The Romance. I wanted things to get a bit more steamy with Daniel and Eva, but the tension and build up was great and the ending was satisfying, if not .

My Recommendation. Overall I really did enjoy this book. I think anyone who enjoys sweet romance and a lot of detail and back story would enjoy this novel. There's a bit of fantasy (time travel) for those who enjoy a magical element and once you get through the first quarter of the book there are plenty of twists to keep the reader engaged. If you like steamy romance, this is not the book for you.

Monday, November 25, 2013

...Dare To Love Book Review...

Dare To Love,  Book Review (Published 2013)
By Carly Phillips

LP's Rating : 5/5 Stars

Genre: Romance/Erotica

Basic Overview:
Since finding out his father had another family on the side, Ian Dare swore to be the upstanding, responsible man his cheating parent had never been. When it comes to his relatives, he gives his all but in relationships he offers the bare minimum. But one glimpse of sensual Riley Taylor arouses his dominant and protective instincts and Ian is entranced. He will do anything to possess her … and does. But any future with Riley must include him extending an olive branch to the half-brother who is a constant reminder of the pain he’d rather forget.

Independent and always in control, Riley Taylor makes no apologies for choosing men carefully. Relationships have never been a priority and she believes herself hardened to domineering men – until she meets charismatic Ian Dare. He manages to turn a simple kiss into an all out assault on her senses and when he takes control in the bedroom, she’s stunned to discover she likes it. As their affair heats up, they soon realize they complete each other in ways neither imagined. But Riley’s past is closer than she cares to remember, and her struggles with Ian’s dominance might just cost her everything.

My Review.
This to me was one of Carly's best novels. I wasn't convinced I'd fall in love with Ian and Riley, but I did. Let me explain. I initially got hooked on Carly's books when I picked up one of The Hot Zone series books. I LOVED IT and demolished the series in a matter of days. As I continued reading more of her books and different series, I liked them, but they didn't leave me with any lasting impressions. HOWEVER...Dare To Love is a book I won't soon forget. It's one of those rare romances that has a little bit of everything I love in a book. 

What I liked.
The Characters. Ian and Riley are real to me. Their dynamic is clever and complex and beautifully written. Their tormented and haunted pasts come to life for me because they're believable. These characters are realistic and relateable, and they're...human.  
Riley. She's what you like to see in a female lead. She's compassionate, emotional, hard working, driven, both strong and vulnerable...everything that makes for an endearing leading lady. There were of course times when I wanted to smack her upside the head and tell her to swallow her pride and think with her head, but of course the more involved you want to get, the better and more riveting the story.
Ian. He's a man's man and he's not ashamed of it. He's a perfect match for Riley, even though he doesn't know it because they're both scarred, they're both scared, and they're both as vulnerable as they are strong. Their compatibility and lack of awareness that they're perfect for one another is what makes them so interesting to read. 

The Romance. This book's got the romance (oh boy does it have some romance, more than I was expecting even). Even though I was initially taken aback by the amount and explicitness, it worked for Ian and Riley, and I got sucked in. Don't get me wrong, I can enjoy an erotica story just like most romance readers, but I was just surprised by how raw and gritty their story way. Pleasantly surprised, I'll add.  

What I didn't like.
If there was anything that rubbed me the wrong way (aside from the amount of explicit sex that was a surprise to me), none of it bothered me enough to recall or mention.

My Recommendation.
If you love Carly Phillips and enjoy a lot of sex in your contemporary romances, this is the book for you. If you like complexity and intricate story arcs, then you'll love this. If you don't appreciate erotica and romance novels are borderline too much for you, this is NOT the book for you. However, I personally have a great feeling about her new Dare series and can't wait to see which characters Carly allows us to follow and how different her writing is going to be now that she's gone Indie. It's SOOOO exciting! Welcome to the "dark" side, Carly. We're so lucky to have you!

Enter to win!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, November 22, 2013

...Buy Into The Fire Today...

Into The Fire, the sequel to After The Ending, is now available!


The book can be purchased from:
In celebration of the release of Into The Fire, we're running a month-long sale of After The Ending, the first installment of The Ending Series. You can find the ebook on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and Smashwords for only $ .99! Sale ends December 24.

We're also running a release day blog blitz giveaway for a $15 Amazon gift card that ends tomorrow. Enter below!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

...Mama Movie Review...

Mama Movie Review (2013)
By Lindsey Pogue



Rating: PG-13/ 100 minutes

Genre: Horror, Thriller

Starring: Jessica Chastain, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau

DirectorAndrés Muschietti
Producer: Guillermo del Toro

LP’s Rating: 5/5 stars

*MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS*

Basic Overview:  This is a story about two young girls who's father loses his mind, takes them out into the woods and attempts to kill them. Only the two girls are saved by "Mama" who becomes the very word. She feeds them, protects them, and plays with them all the while their uncle is searching for them, hoping that they're still alive...somewhere. Well, he gets his wish. After a handful of years he finds the girls, wild and living in an abandoned house in the woods. Little does he know that the two girls are not all he brings back into his home. He and his girlfriend get more than they bargain for when they try to civilize the girls, begin to love them, and are faced with the horrors that accompany life with the two girls. As the girls begin to see that Mama is dangerous and a threat to the family, the girls must choose between the spirit that raised them and their real family.

My Review. 
I really enjoyed this movie. In fact, this is the first "horror" movie I felt as if I was rooting for the monster as much as the protagonists. I was on the edge of my seat from start to finish and found it to be an overall satisfying and compelling horror movie, which I don't typically find. I went from not wanting to watch it to not being able to look away.

Why did I like it?
It's different. I've never seen a horror movie in which I'm torn as to who I should be cheering for. Although there is a definite "bad guy" or "monster" I almost see Mama as more of a "gray" character that's in between and compelling in her own way. Yes, she was a psycho in her past life, but she's also the one who saved the girls and took care of them for so long. She's reacting toward the family as any mother would when feeling threatened.

It's compelling. The relationship between the uncles girlfriend, Annabel, and the two nieces, Lilly and Victoria is very complex and feels real. I like that Annabel went into the situation not because she truly wanted to, but because it meant the everything to the love of her life. She gave up her band, her life...so that she could try to play house with these two wild children and in the end, she was more of a mother to them than she could ever have predicted. I was rooting for her the ENTIRE time.

The ending. It wasn't a bad ending, in fact it was just more surprising than anything. It wasn't how you'd think a horror story should typically end--either everyone lives happily ever after or everyone dies. It was satisfying because it seemed to have a little bit of both. While one girl decides she wants to be with her family, the other decides Mama is her true home and she and Mama parish in happy ignorance at the end.

What I didn't like.

To be honest, I'm not really sure what I didn't like about this movie, nothing comes to mind  other than it was just so different than any other horror movies I've seen, but in a good way. There were of course instances when I was screaming, "Turn around you idiot!" or something like that, but that's a good sign, right?

My recommendation. If you like compelling, different horror movies, you probably like this. If you're more of an Exorcist fan or like Paranormal Activity, probably no so much. If you enjoy Guillermo del Toro movies, this is probably one you'll want to see and if you like to be conflicted as to who you should be rooting for, again, this might be a movie for you. Personally, I LOVE Jessica Chastain and as always, she didn't disappoint!

Sunday, November 17, 2013

...Chapter Reveal...

As promised to our loyal fans, here's Chapter One of Into The Fire, told from Zoe's perspective.  Enjoy! Release day is this Friday!!!!

***CONTENT WARNING: 
some adult language and themes beyond this point.***


CHAPTER 1
ZOE
March 14, 1AE


No! No! This can’t be happening!

“Dani!” My voice carried throughout the eerily quiet field as I sprinted along the pasture fence, away from the barn and toward Dani’s bone-chilling scream. Jake was right behind me, the light from his flashlight dancing around my bare feet. Each breath was so loud, so raspy, it was like I could hear nothing else.

My mind started to feel odd, momentarily distracting me as I ran, but I ignored the feeling along with the frigid air biting at my skin and the jagged rocks poking the bottoms of my feet. My eyes blurred with unshed tears, and I stumbled over something, barely catching myself before colliding with the unyielding ground. I shook my head, trying to dispel the disorienting fog that was steadily creeping into my mind.

In the darkness a few yards ahead, I could see Jason’s shadowy form. His flashlight and gun were pointed in front of him as he swept into the forest with Jack, Dani’s German shepherd, leading the way.

I slowed, hesitating at the edge of the forest. Seeing Jason’s pistol raised scared the shit out of me. Did he find something? Who’s in there? What’s in there?
“D!” I cried out.

In an instant, a strong hand wrapped around my arm. I whipped my head around to face Jake. “What—”

“We have to be quiet, Zoe.” His voice was low and severe. He pointed into the woods, and I realized all I could hear was the sound of flapping wings and a hoot from an owl off in the distance. Jason wasn’t calling out for Dani; there were no voices.
I nodded, feeling stupid, but I still wanted to call for her. I needed her to know that we were nearby…that we would find her. Why is this happening to us? Why can’t we catch a goddamn break!

Turning back to the woods, I concentrated on controlling my breath and regaining some clarity. Why can’t I focus? Sanchez, Harper, Chris, and Carlos passed me, bouncing flashlight beams lighting their way into the dense forest. I vaguely noticed Biggs, Ben, and Ky following them, Biggs muttering curses under his breath. My head started to throb under the massive influx of foreign emotions. I shuttered myself against the onslaught and rushed into the woods, hardly feeling the scraggly branches poking and scratching me.

“What was she even doing out here?” I rasped. I stopped inside the tree line, wishing I had been levelheaded enough to grab a flashlight and a pair of boots like everyone else.

Jake stopped beside me, but Cooper trotted passed us, his nose skimming the ground for a scent. He locked on to a trail and began to follow it. I heard a barrage of whispers around me before everyone broke off into groups, but I focused on the dogs; they were following two different scent trails.

After what felt like an hour of following, searching, and waiting for Jack or Cooper to find some sign of Dani, both dogs’ trails converged at a narrow, jagged tree stump. Jack whined, and Cooper sniffed the pine needles around the base of the stump. The dogs had found something. Instinctively, my gut balled into a knot.

Ben, who was helping to keep his brother upright, began to say something. “I think—”

“Here,” Harper said, aiming his flashlight at the exposed roots of the stump. Crouching, he shifted a fist-sized stone and picked something up.

Chris stepped up behind him and peered over his shoulder. “Jason,” she said ominously, glancing at my brother.

He moved to her side, and hesitantly, I followed. I stopped almost instantly. Jason’s dread washed over me, a wave of nausea making my insides lurch, and I had to close my mouth and hold my breath to avoid vomiting. Every hair on my body stood on end at the thought of what they’d found. “What is it?” I croaked. Please don’t say a body part…

Stiffly, Jason squatted beside Harper, taking whatever Harper had found from his hand. A yellow piece of fabric?

“It’s just like the ones we saw back at Lewis-McChord,” Chris said quietly. Rising from his seated position next to Jason, Jack stretched out his neck to sniff the cloth and whined.

Chris glanced around at our confused faces and explained, “It’s an armband, or at least part of one. Some of the personnel were wearing these when they put our base on lock-down.” She shook her head. “We stole a few; it was the only way we could get off the base. The people wearing these”—she snatched the armband out of Jason’s hand and clenched it in her fist—“had something to do with the Virus.”

“I’ve seen those before too, on people from the Colony,” Jake said. He’d been trying to convince us that the supposed safe haven was dangerous since we first met up with him at Fort Knox. “It must’ve been them…”

An image of his sister’s dark hair and violet eyes flashed through my mind. He was remembering her. He was remembering the men who’d promised to help her, the men who had frightened her enough that she’d taken her own life before they could.

Everyone looked at Jake, including my dangerously quiet brother. “Why would they take Dani?” Jason asked as he rose and took a menacing step toward Jake. “How would they even know we’re here?”

I didn’t like Jason’s accusing tone, but Jake didn’t seem to notice. Never taking his eyes off the yellow armband, he answered, “I don’t know how they knew we were here, but if they wanted her bad enough to kidnap her…their resources are—were…” He paused. “It wouldn’t have been difficult for them to take her.” The images of his sister’s final breath played through his head…through mine. A gut-wrenching feeling of loss took root in the pit of my stomach.

“You seem to know a lot about them,” Jason probed, taking another step toward Jake. “Maybe you know more than you’re letting on. Maybe you—”

“You think I’d save Zoe’s life back at Fort Knox just to put her in danger again? You really are a piece of—” Jake inhaled and then emitted no further sounds, like he’d decided holding his breath for a while was the safer option. He was probably right.

He met Jason’s challenging stare a moment longer before turning his angry gaze on me. “I warned you not to come here.” His words stung with truth.

“Then how the fuck did they find us?” Jason’s voice was damning, his glare focused solely on Jake. I didn’t like it and felt a sudden desire to punch my brother in the face.

“How the hell should I know?” Jake snapped. “We’ve been here over a month and nothing. You get here and now they know where we are.”

Jason made a noise that was part exhale, part growl. “How exactly do you know so much about them?”

“Because they tried to take my sister, and now she’s dead,” Jake replied hotly.

The two men were standing less than two feet apart, Jason’s rage barely contained. He didn’t lose control often, but when he did…I shuddered, recalling the worst of the fights between him and our dad. Jason cracked his knuckles, an ominous sign I was all too familiar with, and I feared my brother wouldn’t be able to rein in his temper.

I stepped between them. “It’s not Jake’s fault, Jason, so back off!”

My brother ignored me, instead turning his aggression on Chris. “Stay the fuck out of my head,” he ordered, obviously feeling her cerebral fingers trying to manipulate his mental state into something more stable.

Jake and Jason weren’t the only ones on edge. Biggs was worrying about Sarah and their unborn baby, and Ky was in pain, practically folding under the weight of our collective panic. Ky’s Ability to feel volatility—to sense and internalize everyone’s destructive emotions—was physically debilitating him. He reached for the flask in his pocket without a second thought. Abandoning Jason, Chris ran to Ky’s side.

The weight and amount of negativity Ky was picking up on frightened me; it was as if he wasn’t just sensing our group, but all of the fear and hostility surrounding us. From Cañon City? From the Colony? Like Ky, I was pulled in all directions by the mounting unease and fear of everyone around us, as though I were being emotionally drawn and quartered. I wanted to scream.

The looming fog seemed to thicken in my brain, tangling with the barrage of emotions. What the hell’s going on? I searched my convoluted mind for something I could grasp on to—something other than anger and fear and resentment. I’d been so fucking naïve to think everything would be okay once we found each other. Keep it together, Zoe, Dani needs you.

Closing my eyes, I took a deep breath, inhaling the scent of the forest—the sharp smell of pine needles, damp soil, and wood. The fog continued to spread its tendrils through my mind in a horrifyingly familiar way. I felt trapped in my own head, unable to escape the encroaching numbness. The only other time I’d felt such an overwhelming loss of mental control was when my mind had been invaded by Crazies in the hospital back at Fort Knox. What if we’re wrong? What if it isn’t the Colony?

Feeling a sudden jolt of panic, I opened my eyes. I could see the lichen coating the tree trunks in the dim moonlight, like spots on a leopard. But there were no snarls or howls or voices beyond our group. There were no fiendish sounds of Crazies cackling in the distance. There were no signs giving me cause to think anyone was there at all.

But someone took Dani.

A bolt of anger shot through me, jostling me from my statue-like state. I took a step toward my brother. “What the hell was she doing out here, Jason?” He’d always been big, bad, protective Jason—so why had he let Dani go outside, alone, in the middle of the night?

In the faint moonlight dappling his face, I could barely make out the hard set of his features. “Peeing,” he answered lamely.

“Peeing? Alone? In the woods?” My anger flared, fury consuming my disbelief and fear. “I can’t believe you, Jason! I just got her back, and now you—”

“Fuck you!” He pointed at me in warning, his eyes glinting silver in the darkness. “She was just peeing,” he muttered.

“I can’t believe someone was just standing here,” Biggs said and began pacing. “Were they just waiting for us this whole time? Sarah…the baby…” He looked up at Sanchez abruptly. “We need to get out of here,” he said evenly. “It’s not safe here anymore. We’ve—”

“Do what you want,” Jason growled. “I’m going after Dani.”

“You think you can just walk into the Colony and get her? We need a plan first,” Jake said, facing Chris and Sanchez. “We need—”

“Need to what? To wait for them to hurt her? To do worse?” Jason’s tone was scathing as, once again, he took a step closer to Jake.

“Calm down, Jason.” I placed myself between them again. “We need to come up with a plan first. I mean, what if it’s Crazies and has nothing to do with the—”

“It’s not Crazies,” Jake and Jason said at the same time. They exchanged an irritated glance.

I rolled my eyes. “If it is the Colony, they’ll outnumber us and—”

“Then you stay here and plan,” Jason said with a smirk. “I’ll go find Dani.”

“Get over yourself already!” I seethed. “You think I’m not worried about her? Like I haven’t been waiting to see Dani for months? Like I haven’t been worrying about her since all this bullshit started? Like suddenly I don’t care about her anymore because you’re in the picture? She’s my best friend, remember? Or did you forget that, since everything’s always about you?” My voice was riddled with bitterness and jealousy, and my words were laden with twenty-six years’ worth of resentment.

To my surprise, Jason remained silent.

Sanchez cleared her throat. “Look,” she said deliberately. “If we want to find your friend, we need to be rational. So grow the fuck up and stop arguing, and then we can come up with a plan that won’t get us all killed.”

“We can’t do much else in the dark,” Harper said, his voice breaking through the tension. “The sun’ll be up in an hour or so, then we can continue searching for signs of what happened.”

“I’m not finished looking for her,” Jason muttered and turned toward his tent.

“I wasn’t implying that any of us were finished looking for her,” Harper clarified, but Jason continued stalking away. The rest of us dispersed, some making their way back to camp, but Jake, Harper, and I stopped at the edge of the forest, watching…thinking.

“Look how close they were to us,” I said with a shaky breath. I gauged the distance between where we stood and the barn. Although far away, I could see the dim embers of the night’s fire and the outline of the hay bales and chairs surrounding it. I watched the dark figures of my companions as they moved around the camp. “We never even heard them.”

Suddenly, as if my skin had become animated, creeping over my bones and muscles, I shivered. The thought of never seeing Dani alive again after everything we’d been through—journeying across the country, surviving homicide attempts and Crazies—caused a rogue tear to roll down my cheek. Determination, Zoe, I told myself. I hurriedly wiped the tear away.

With my brother out of earshot, I turned to Harper. I recalled the fleeting look of unease that had flashed over his dark, handsome features when Dani had arrived the day before. Whatever he’d seen was startling enough to have made his green eyes flare with apprehension.

“You had a vision earlier…yesterday, when you were hugging Dani, didn’t you?” I knew I wasn’t going to like his reply the moment he closed his eyes in…regret?

Harper didn’t look at me when he spoke. “I saw her in darkness,” he said quietly. “I don’t know if she was sleeping or—”

“Unconscious,” I finished for him, refusing to hear him utter the word “dead.”

Wednesday, November 13, 2013



We're so excited to share the next part of Dani and Zoe's journey with you! :) As a "10 days till" bonus, we're releasing two short excerpts tonight, one from Zoe's POV, and one from Dani's.

Here's the Dani excerpt:
After several long, silent minutes, Gabe stood, strode over to the sink, and pulled a lighter out of a nearby drawer. He held the piece of paper over the sink, and with a flick of the lighter, set it aflame. 
“What are you doing?” I screeched, jumping up as I watched the paper shrivel into an ashy ball. 
Gabe dropped it before the tiny flames burned his fingers, and shook his head.

And, here's the Zoe excerpt (ooh-la-la!):
Everything about him was lust and desire, and the acuteness of what he was feeling devastated my composure, making me feel nothing but need—his need and mine. I needed his hands and lips on every inch of my body. I needed him to take me until I had nothing left to give. I could barely breathe…I didn’t want to breathe…I just wanted him.

Only 10 days until you'll be able to get the whole book, and only 3 days until we release the first chapter, which picks up Zoe's side of the story right where After The Ending left off. Squeeeeeeeeellll! :)

Sign up for our Goodreads giveaway!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

....Goodreads GiVeAwAy!....

Enter to win a paperback version of Into The Fire, much anticipated book two of The Ending Series! Enter to win now! Visit the blog! Giveaway ends soon...


Goodreads Book Giveaway

Into The Fire by Lindsey Fairleigh

Into The Fire

by Lindsey Fairleigh

Giveaway ends November 22, 2013.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win

Sunday, November 3, 2013

...The Night Circus Review...

The Night Circus Book Review (Published 2011)
By Erin Morgenstern

Genre: Romance, Fantasy, Fiction, Magic, Book club

LP's Rating: 3/5 stars

Basic Overview:
The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night.

But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway—a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love—a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands.

True love or not, the game must play out, and the fates of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus per­formers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead.

My Review. Overall this book was a good read. It was full of mystery and enchantment and a love story I could really cheer for. There were characters I wanted to smack and others I wanted to squeeze for being so sweet, and I like that because I get more involved that way. Going back and forth between timelines was mostly confusing for me toward the end, when the two timelines were finally meshing. There were tons of questions throughout the book that kept me reading, which is good, and while I didn't find some of the resolutions super exciting, the ending was satisfying. There were also a lot of characters to keep track of, and I found myself getting confused as to who was who, so pay attention to the names!

What I liked.
It was creative. I would love to see this book turned into a film with vivid colors, defying feats, and amazing costumes. I read this for book club and the story has given us so much to discuss from how we interpreted what was going on, the role each character would inevitably play, and so on. It was really interesting to hear other people's hypothesis halfway through the book and it helped me to go into the second half with other people's observations in mind. It was a great choice to read with the group.

Prose. It was beautifully written and easy enough to follow, as long as your imagination is WIDE OPEN and you allow for the impossible to become a reality in this story. The author write eloquently and purposefully, which helps with the flow and to pull the reader in.

Description. I felt like I could really see what was going on, that I could smell the candy, feel the fire, see Celia's dress changing color. The author did a great job of bringing the reader into her mind, showing us what she see, feeling what she's feeling for her characters, and that's not an easy task.

What I didn't like.
Too much description. Although I loved how vivid the circus was in my mind, I truly felt like there was so much description I was skimming through a lot of it from the middle of the book on. I don't like doing that because I know I risk missing something important, but there's just so much going on, so many questions I wanted answered, that reading four paragraphs describing a new tent or something to that nature was hard to justify.

The Ending. I'm torn because part of me wanted answers, and I got them, but I also feel like it wasn't very moving or satisfying. This books is filled with so much mystery, I really thought I would be like, "Holy Crap!" but I didn't get that as all the pieces came together.

My recommendation.
Book clubs should read this for sure. If you like magic and enjoy the hustle and bustle of the circus, you'll probably enjoy this. If you love imagery and vivid description, this a book for you. If you're reading it for the romance, there's not very much so this probably wouldn't be the book for you. I gave this book a 3/5 stars because as much as I enjoyed it, I also didn't feel super fulfilled at the end and since that's the lasting impression, I'm a tad torn on how to rate it.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

...Into The Fire Prologue...

It's officially three weeks until the release of Into The Fire!!!


As we've already announced (a while back), there's a third, supporting character POV included in Into The Fire in addition to Dani and Zoe. His name is Mase, and he's very different from our MCs, offering some interesting and unique insights to the world after The Ending. And for those of you who are worried Mase will steal page time from Dani and Zoe, have no fear, he only has the prologue and 3 chapters throughout the body of the book, and in all but the prologue, one of our MCs is present.

We'll be releasing the first chapter, which is from Zoe's perspective, closer to the release date (Nov. 22).

But in the meantime...scroll down to read the entire prologue of Into The Fire!


***content warning: some profanity beyond this point***


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

PROLOGUE
MASE
JANUARY 5, 1AE



“I’m just sayin’ the General freaks me the fuck out, Mase, and…” Carter stopped talking—for once—as he shifted the beam of his flashlight to shine down the next aisle. “D’you hear that?”

Carter could be dense, but if he thought he heard something, there was something to be heard. Thanks to the Virus, the guy had the ears of a dog.

Mase lifted his left arm and made a fist, and the other two members of his fireteam froze behind him. Ahead, Carter stood, head cocked to the side. As one, they listened. Mase barely caught it—whimpering. After giving Carter a curt nod, he signaled for all three men to follow him, raised his M4, and crept closer to the noise.

Patrolling the supply warehouses had been their duty for over a month, ever since the Virus had wiped out almost everyone, and they’d yet to find an intruder. General Herodson’s standing order was that only select personnel could enter the warehouses to guard, inspect, and distribute food and other supplies. Unless Mase was grossly mistaken, they were the only patrol on duty at Warehouse F until the shift change at midnight, which was still hours away.

It looked like they’d found their first intruder.

As they crept down the aisle between two towering metal shelving units stuffed with pallets of shrink-wrapped supplies—paper towels, toilet paper, plastic cups—they swept each side with the lights attached to their rifles. Halfway down the aisle, huddled on the cold cement floor, was the intruder. The girl was hugging her knees and hiding her face like she was trying to disappear. Mase scowled.

Slowly, the girl raised her head, and when Mase saw her dirt-smudged face, his breath hitched. It couldn’t be her…not in the Colony. Her long, dark hair was ratted and clumped, tear tracks trailed down her cheeks, and confusion filled her eyes. Mase knew they were hazel from memory, even if he couldn’t see their color in the darkness.

“Stand down,” Mase said to the other soldiers before turning his attention to the young woman. “Camille? What are you doing here? Are you hurt?” His voice was always deep, gravelly, but concern or maybe fear made it even harsher. Hesitantly, he took a step closer to her.

Camille flinched, becoming an even tighter ball of folded limbs and tangled hair on the dirty cement floor.

For the first time in his two years as a Ranger, Mase regretted spending so much time lifting weights. She was afraid of him. But he knew her. He had to help her.

Clearing his throat, he put on what he hoped was a comforting smile and took another step closer.

“We won’t hurt you,” he told the teenage girl as he knelt down in front of her. “I promise.” When he touched Camille’s arm, she flinched again. “I promise we won’t hurt you,” he repeated. Intruders were to be taken straight to headquarters—to General Herodson—but he couldn’t do that. They tended to disappear after that. Of course, if the bastard found out Mase had disobeyed his orders, Mase would disappear himself . . . but it was Camille.

When she finally peered up at him, Mase did his best to look less intimidating by hunching his shoulders, hanging his head, not scowling. She watched him carefully, blank curiosity filling her face.

“What are you doing here, Camille?”

She opened her mouth to speak, but no sound came out. She tried again. “Who—who is Camille?”

Surprised, Mase sat back on his heels and studied her. It is her, isn’t it? She was older—more a woman than a child, unlike the last time he’d seen her. Camille was a few years younger than him, so now she had to be at least seventeen. She still looked like a perfect little doll, though. There was no question in Mase’s mind that he was staring at the young woman he’d lived next door to nearly his entire life.

“You,” he said. “You’re Camille. And I’m Mase.” He remembered the day her parents brought her home from the hospital…the afternoon she fell off her bike and chipped her tooth on the sidewalk…the Valentine’s Day she gave him a card made out of pink and purple construction paper…the day he taught her how to coast on his skateboard without falling…the night she ran away crying after meeting one of his girlfriends. But if Camille could remember any of that, she was hiding it well. She just stared, not responding, and began to shiver.

Mase heard his men whispering and shuffling around behind him. He ignored them. “It’s okay, Camille,” he said, doing his best to soften his voice. “We’re friends. We were neighbors, remember? Back in Minneapolis? I used to look after you when your parents—”

The other men chuckled, Carter bursting into open laughter. Mase flipped them the bird over his shoulder. They only laughed harder.

“You…” Carter couldn’t stop laughing. “You…you used to babysit?”

Rising, Mase spun and pointed threateningly at Carter. “Shut the fuck up.” He glared at each of the men, warning clear in his eyes, until they quieted. “Nobody touches her. Nobody says a fucking word about this. Forget you ever saw her.”

Their amusement vanished, and they stared back at him with identical expressions—fear mixed with pity and regret. They knew what had to be done.

“Mase,” the nearest said. “We have to turn her in. The General’s standing orders are to—”

“I know the orders,” Mase snapped. “Fuck them. She’s not going anywhere near Herodson. Forget. You. Ever. Saw. Her.”

After a brief hesitation, all three men nodded.

Letting out a relieved breath, Mase turned back to Camille. She was watching him with eyes widened in interest, not fear. He knelt in front of her and explained, “It’s not safe for you here. You’re going to have to hide until I can get you registered as a Colonist.”

Surprising him, Camille reached out and touched the side of his face with her fingertips, frowning when he flinched. “Where am I?” she whispered.

Mase glanced back at his men, silently warning them to keep their mouths shut. If Camille didn’t have any memory of the Virus—of nearly everyone dying—he didn’t want to be the one to tell her. At least not yet. “You’re in the Colony. It used to be a military base. You’ll be safe here as soon as I get you registered.” He hesitated for a moment. “You have no idea how you got here?”

Quietly, Camille said, “No. I have no idea.” She studied him with eerily calm eyes.

A metallic bang stole Mase’s attention, and then the overhead lights flared to life. Someone else was in the warehouse. While the others stood nearby, rifles raised, Mase helped Camille hide between two pallets of paper towels. She was barely out of sight when the newcomers rounded the far end of the aisle. Mase’s stomach dropped when he saw him.

“Atwell! How is your patrol going this evening?” asked the man leading a dozen soldiers. Dressed in his usual officer finery, General Herodson strolled down the aisle toward Mase…toward Camille.

“Nothing unusual, Sir,” Mase reported, stepping away from Camille’s hiding place before the General was close enough to see her in the shadows.

General Herodson inspected Mase and his fireteam closely. “So it seems,” he said, giving Mase an instant feeling of holy-fucking-shit. Casually, the General glanced around, his gaze lingering near Camille’s hiding spot.

“How are the Ability transfers going?” Mase asked, hoping to distract him.

The General looked at him with cold, gray eyes.

Mase returned the man’s stare, refusing to look away. “Have there been any new developments? I know some of the men would like to get outfitted with regeneration or telekinesis.”

General Herodson bared his teeth in a smile. “Not yet, no. However, we have had an interesting breakthrough on another project. We’re calling them ‘Re-gens’—they’re reanimated corpses, more or less. They even retain their Abilities, though they’re altered somewhat from what they were during their first lives.” He paused, glancing up at the lights thoughtfully. “But the process wipes their minds completely clean, making them very easy to influence.” He rubbed his hands together briskly. “No need to deal with pesky memories or morals.”

Reanimated corpses. It took effort for Mase to keep his expression blank.

Abruptly, General Herodson said, “As you were,” and turned to leave.

Mase watched him walk away, reluctant to move. Why had the General told him about the Re-gens? Why had he come into the warehouse in the first place? Something wasn’t right.

As they neared the end of the aisle, General Herodson and his guards halted. “CL-one,” the General called out as he turned to face Mase again. “Come here, CL-one.”

Shocking the shit out of Mase, Camille wriggled out from her hiding spot and hurried to General Herodson’s side.

Mase clenched his jaw, realizing he’d just signed his own death warrant.

“CL-one is a particularly amazing Re-gen, don’t you agree, Atwell? We just finished her the other day.” General Herodson watched Mase like he was gauging every minute change in his expression. Mase kept his face hard and cold, like the General’s. “Take their weapons, my dear,” Herodson said to Camille.

Even at a distance, Mase could see the confusion on Camille’s face. “Why, Father?” she asked softly.

The General stiffened. “Because I told you to, my dear,” he said with strained affection. “These men must be arrested and put on trial. They broke the law. My law.”

“Oh,” Camille said, sounding sad, or maybe confused. “What will happen to them after the trial?”

It seemed to take a conscious effort for General Herodson to suppress his simmering anger. The man hated being questioned. “The other three will be banished from the Colony,” he said through gritted teeth. “Atwell will be executed and turned into a Re-gen.”

“Okay,” she said, smiling contentedly. She took a deep breath, then shut her eyes. Her mouth thinned to a flat line.

As Mase looked from her to General Herodson, hatred flooded his veins, quickly followed by adrenaline. His muscles vibrated with the unnatural strength that had increased steadily over the past two years. He was the strongest, fastest person he’d ever heard of—not that it would help him now. The General knew about his Ability. Mase figured that was probably the only reason he wanted to bring him back as a Re-gen: to be used…owned. Mase ground his teeth together and tried to think of a way out of this clusterfuck.

Suddenly, his M4 tugged out of his hands and floated upward. He tried to yank it back down, but it continued to float higher. Moving quickly, he untangled his arm from the rifle’s strap before it forced him up onto his toes. From the sounds of his men cursing behind him, he knew they were being remotely disarmed as well. Mase watched as their weapons glided into the hands of the General’s guards. His attention was drawn to Camille, who was still concentrating. She was doing it.

She opened her eyes and left the General’s side, a coy smile curving her mouth. Mase watched her approach him, frozen in remorse at what he’d caused. His men wouldn’t be “tossed out of the Colony”—they would be executed, regardless of what the General had claimed.

It felt like minutes, but finally Camille reached Mase. She caught his gaze, a spark of sharp intelligence lighting eyes that had once been hazel but were now gray. Almost inaudibly, she whispered, “Do not be afraid, Mase. I will take care of you, just like you used to take care of me. And with my friends, we will take care of Father.”

Mase barely registered her robotic intonation. He couldn’t believe what was about to happen. Soon, he would die, only to be brought back as something else. As someone else.

The reanimated young woman stood on tiptoes and lightly touched her lips to Mase’s cheek. “My friends really do not like Father.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Stay tuned for chapter one!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

...CALLING ALL READERS!...


CALL FOR ADVANCE READERS!!!!!
Into The Fire, Book Two of The Ending Series
Are you a book blogger/reviewer? Are you dying to know what happens next in the world of The Ending? 
 If you are and you're interested in being added to our advance readers list for The Ending series, please send us an email (lindseys@TheEndingSeries.com) with a link to your blog and/or further information about any blogs/publications/websites you review for.
Thanks and, as always, happy reading!

Sunday, October 27, 2013

...Crystal Caves...

Talk about inspiration. I wonder if this is what Mary Stewart had in mind while writing her Arthurian Saga. This photo alone is enough to make me want to write a story about magical creatures and mystical beings. Throw in some magic beans and...it's truly awe inspiring.



Read more about the Cave of Crystal Giants


(to find out what "magic beans" are, sign up for The Ending Newsletter :)

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

...the countdown continues...


...until the release of the second book in The Ending series!

Into The Fire (The Ending, #2)


Here's today's countdown goody:


"Evenly spaced lights shone from the ceiling with a bright, artificial glow. They hummed. It was annoying. For several months, I’d been without electricity of any kind. There had been no overhead lights in the middle of the night, no showers spraying deliciously hot water, no microwaves, and no washing machines. My people and I had reverted back to the basics and had grown accustomed to a simpler way of life. I couldn’t get over how loud the electricity was; it buzzed incessantly, threatening to drive me insane."


Tuesday, October 22, 2013

...My New home!...


This is my new blog, sorry for any confusion in following my wordpress blog. While I love those guys, it wasn't as user friendly as I'd hoped. Sooo...I'm back! All my posts have been transferred over in case you're looking for anything in particular.

...Book Review for Ms. Ward, coming right up!...




Check out my brief, but honest review of J.R. Ward's Lover Reborn on Goodreads


I enjoyed this story a lot (it's up there with Z and V's stories as well).

What I liked:
I appreciated the intricacy of this story...how Autumn and Tohr's stories come full circle from Autumn (no-one) knowing Tohr even before he was mated, what they'd been through before she killed herself, and the subtle feelings that are resurrected along with their own essence and livelihood.
I like Tohr's character in general. He's a good guy, well rounded and definitely the right choice for a father-like figure. He's a character I feel like I can relate to in a small way vs. Rhage or Phury's stories.
BOB - Band of Bastards. While I'm not exactly sure where Ward is going with them, I'm enjoying the break from so many Lessers. I honestly found myself skimming through their story most of the time because it's generally pretty predictable and/or similar to the last.
Layla's fascination with xcor. I LOVE IT and I hope something happens between them in the future.
Bruce Willis is mentioned! That made my day.

What I had a hard time with:
Ward's use of slang- it's distracting to me and I don't know how necessary it is. It also dates the story -- using all the pop culture songs, artists, clothes, cars, phones etc. will make it strange if I read it again in 5 years or even a couple. I've already re-read my BDB series twice, and the first few stories are pretty old in comparison to the last few with John, Payne and Tohr (especially if Ward continues the story after Blay and Quinn).
Listening to it on Audible vs. reading the book. The Audible version is difficult to keep up with...no voice intonation even thought there are many characters.



I am definitely reading the Lover at Last book. I CAN'T WAIT~

...the perfect words...

It's such a sigh of relief when you come across something that completely sums up the thoughts you've been unable to articulate. Thank you Mr. Lewis, for your words and wisdom.

“Experience: that most brutal of teachers. But you learn, my God do you learn.” –C. S. Lewis



This is how I've been feeling over the past year. Thanks to Lindsey Fairleigh for finding this. It sums up the last twelve months perfectly.

...Countdown: Day 32...


INTO THE FIRE (The Ending, #2) Release Countdown: 32 days...

...until the release of the second book in The Ending series!

To celebrate, here's another little snippet from the first chapter (Zoe):


“Look how close they were to us,” I said with a shaky breath. I gauged the distance between where we stood and the barn. Although far away, I could see the dim embers of the night’s fire and the outline of the hay bales and chairs surrounding it. I watched the dark figures of my companions as they moved around the camp. “We never even heard them.”

More to come tomorrow!

...may the countdown begin!...

We were going to wait and do a 30-day countdown, but we just couldn't resist. So, LET THE COUNTDOWN BEGIN! Follow me, my blog, or After The Ending on FB if you want a taste of what juicy morsels lie ahead!

33 days and counting until the release of Into The Fire!

Here's one of our favorite Dani quotes from the book.
Hmmm...I wonder what she could possibly be talking about...

Dani Quote IF

...Carly Phillips news and cover reveal!...



Do you LOVE Carly Phillips? Contemporary romance? Witty prose and lovable characters? Does your bookshelf look like mine?? Okay, maybe more organized, but you get the point.

Carly's newest series, Dare To Love, won't disappoint! I'll be reading an ARC for review, so I'll have more to share with you all soon, but in the meantime, here's more about the book, the cover, and all the steaminess that awaits us!

New York Times Bestselling Author Carly Phillips turns up the heat in her newest sexy contemporary romance series, and introduces you to the Dare family... siblings shaped by a father's secrets and betrayal.

Since finding out his father had another family on the side, Ian Dare swore to be the upstanding, responsible man his cheating parent had never been. When it comes to his relatives, he gives his all but in relationships he offers the bare minimum. But one glimpse of sensual Riley Taylor arouses his dominant and protective instincts and Ian is entranced. He will do anything to possess her ... and does. But any future with Riley must include him extending an olive branch to the half-brother who is a constant reminder of the pain he'd rather forget.

Independent and always in control, Riley Taylor makes no apologies for choosing men carefully. Relationships have never been a priority and she believes herself hardened to domineering men - until she meets charismatic Ian Dare. He manages to turn a simple kiss into an all out assault on her senses and when he takes control in the bedroom, she's stunned to discover she likes it. As their affair heats up, they soon realize they complete each other in ways neither imagined. But Riley's past is closer than she cares to remember, and her struggles with Ian's dominance might just cost her everything.

Dare to Love is available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, itunes, and Kobo starting November 18th!

Extra! Extra! More CARLY PHILLIPS news hot off the press!

________________________________________________________________________

Dear Readers,

I know I’ve been teasing everyone for a while now about some exciting news that I have in the works. And I now have the official go-ahead to tell the world what's coming next for me! Are you ready? I’m so ready to share. I’ve been DYING to shout from the rooftops and have had a hard time keeping the news to myself. But here you go:

I’m going Indie.

That’s right. Instead of publishing my next series of books with a traditional publisher, I’ve decided to self-publish the series. Don't worry, I'll explain what this means for you. But first ...Why am I making the switching to Indie you ask? Well after a lot of research and many debates with myself, I made the decision to self-publish my next series for one primary reason: YOU, my readers. The rise and success of self-publishing has obviously made a huge impact on the industry, and many of my readers have reached out to me personally, encouraging me to make some changes.

Although my publishers have always been very good to me and I’ve very much enjoyed working with them, there is a good reason for me to make the switch. More control. Making the move to indie is giving me more control over my books. I’m no longer tied to a specific word count set by a publisher. I have more control over the editing process. I can make the final decisions on covers, release dates, blurbs and content. And the most important factor: I now sets the price points of my books. Making the switch to self-publishing is giving me total control to make both myself and you, my readers very, very happy.

The first book in my brand new Dare to Love series (also titled Dare to Love) is set to release on November 18th 2013.

Coming soon, you can pre-order DARE TO LOVE exclusively at iTunes. On the day of release, you can find the books on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Kobo. In addition, the book will be available in paperback too! Of course I’ll send a newsletter, but be sure to follow me on social media (links below) in order to get the most up to date information as it happens! For my paperback readers: This bears repeating: YES these books will available in paperback as well as eBook!

https://twitter.com/carlyphillips


https://www.facebook.com/CarlyPhillipsFanPage


A fun note about the story...In the past my books have been sweet and sexy contemporaries with a small town setting, but with Dare to Love I’m turning up the heat. The Dare to Love Series will be steamier, sexier and hotter than anything I’ve ever written. And I can not wait for you to read it!

________________________________________________________________________

I'm so excited that Carly will be joining us indie authors in the self-publishing world. Welcome, Carly!

My favorite Carly Phillips series is The Hot Zone. You gotta love those Jordan sisters and the hunky athletes they represent. Which are your favorite?

Stay tuned for more about Carly Phillips's new book and Happy Reading!

Lindsey

...Into The Fire, Book Two of The Ending Series Cover Reveal...




The Virus changed them, but that was only the beginning…

…death…mutation…insanity…corruption…terror…

…all that remains is hope.



In the wake of destruction left behind by the Virus, it took Dani and Zoe months to find each other. But their reunion was short-lived. Dani has been taken, and though little distance separates them, they might as well be worlds apart.

From the moment she hears Dani’s scream, Zoe’s only goal is to save her best friend. She and her companions scramble to come up with a rescue plan, but when a ghost from Jake’s past reappears, lines are blurred, decisions become harder, and secrets are revealed…and some secrets are best left buried. To keep heartache and fear from consuming her, Zoe must cling to her determination. She will see Dani again.

Dani awakens inside the final hold-out of civilization: the Colony. Remnants of the former world surround her—electricity, safety, social order—but all is not what it seems. As she faces her most manipulative adversary yet, she loses sight of who she is and who she can trust. Friends become enemies, enemies become allies, and allies will betray her. Dani will have to decide what she’s willing to do and whose lives she’s willing to risk if she is to have any chance of breaking free.

...After The Ending, Alternate POV...

Any After The Ending fans out there? Yes! I've heard from some of you!

Check out the book's blog for this exclusive alternate POV from a chapter that you no doubt know and love...Read Jason's perspective and get a much anticipated glimpse inside his mind.



For early and inside information, sign up for The Ending Series Newsletter here.

Enjoy and have a great weekend!

Lindsey

...writers remember...

You can't fail at writing...unless you quit.

"If you write a hundred short stories and they’re all bad, that doesn’t mean you’ve failed. You fail only if you stop writing. I’ve written about 2,000 short stories; I’ve only published about 300 and I feel I’m still learning. Any man who keeps working is not a failure. He may not be a great writer, but if he applies the old-fashioned virtues of hard, constant labor, he’ll eventually make some kind of career for himself as a writer."

RAY BRADBURY (1967)

...proper romance giveaway...

I love me some proper romance!

While I love Jane Austen, I can only re-read her intricately crafted stories so many times before I need something new and exciting. I'm always looking for a great book, and I KNOW that I can count on Julianne Donaldson to deliver. I'm really excited about her second novel, Blackmoore.

She's having a giveaway! Check it out!




Her debut novel, Edenbrooke is also truly wonderful, so I hope you'll check it out, too! You're going to want all of Donaldson's stories on your bookshelf. They're perfect for a cold winter day when you can curl up and get lost in an intriguingly beautiful read.




I can't wait for whatever she has in store for us next!

...World War Z movie review...




World War Z Movie Review (2013)
By Lindsey Pogue

Rating: PG-13/ 116 minutes

Genre: Action | Adventure | Horror


Starring: Brad Pitt, David Morse, Mireille Enos, Daniella Kertesz

Director: Marc Forster

Book Adaptation: World War Z, By Max Brooks (Apocalyptic Horror)

LP’s Rating: 5/5 stars

Basic Overview: A pandemic spreads throughout the world infecting billions of people, and in turn collapses armies and governments leaving everyone who's left to scramble for answers. Retired United Nations investigator Gerry Lane (Pitt) is called upon to investigate the origin and science behind the virus that’s threatening to destroy humanity itself. In order to keep his family protected, Lane agrees to traverse the world, digging up and following leads he hopes will lead him to the origin of the virus.

My Review. Although I’m an avid reader and I co-author a post-apocalyptic sci-fi book series, I’m not typically an end-of-the-world sort of reader. Movies, however, are a completely different story. When I heard they were making WWZ into a movie, and that Brad Pitt was going to star in it, I instantly thought, “this is going to be…interesting.” It was difficult for me to picture and really get excited about Brad Pitt and zombies. However, going into the movie knowing little about it, I had little to no expectations about the film, and I ended up being very pleasantly surprised by the story line. Don’t get me wrong, I like Brad Pitt as an actor. Who doesn't? But Brad Pitt and zombies didn’t seem like a believable or satisfying pairing to me. I was wrong.

Why did I like it? WWZ isn’t your typical zombie story—it has complexity, science, intrigue, and tons of on-the-edge-of-your-seat suspense and action.

It’s realistic. WWZ isn’t about a genetically altered badass or crazy gunslinger who single-handedly try to save the world nor was it about power hungry extremist. It's more organic than that. Yes, Lane is the hero of the story, but he doesn't save the world on his own, or do it with any ease whatsoever. Lane's drive is more human and relatable than say, Alice from Resident Evil (even though I love her). This movie is thoughtful and realistic in terms of what actions would be taken, the anatomy of the virus, and how and who might actually be able to get to the bottom of it and discover weakness, cures, and so on. WWZ, to me, seems feasible, which makes the story that much more frightening and realistic. It's more of a behind-the-scenes look at what the government (at least what remains of it) would do in order to stop the virus, who they’d call upon to help, how the world as a whole is affected, and so on.

Suspense. Without giving too much away, this movie is stressful—in a good way—to watch. Just when you think Lane might catch a break, that some of his team members might live or that answers may have been uncovered, the situation gets worse and the plans fall apart. Lane is forced to think of his feet and work with strangers in nearly every scene just to stay alive. Nothing in life is ever easy, right? There is little about this movie that's convenient, another reason why I appreciated it so much. All 116 minutes are a struggle and every minute of it you're hoping Lane will catch a much needed break.

The science. The more “interactions” Lane has with the infected, the more he observes. What sets them off? Who is it that they kill? Is it everyone, or…? Why? The more he sees, the more questions he has about their weaknesses and the way the virus works. Everything has some sort of weakness, right? What is the biology of nature? As a hypothesis begins to form, Lane is forced to make some very hard decisions as to how exactly he’s going to test them, making every moment up until the very end, thrilling.

My recommendation. I really enjoyed this movie, but that’s me. I’m not a fan of over-the-top horror movies like so many of them are. For a movie to be truly unsettling and considered “scary”, it needs to be plausible and this story does that for me. It makes me think…what if? I would recommend it to anyone who likes a deeper level of involvement from the audience—an action/horror film with complexity, humanity, and a character's sheer will to stay alive--if not for his family than for himself. This movie makes me want to read the book.Check it out.

...Sigh...Amazing book reviews that make me smile...

Thanks to Library at the End of the Universe for such a wonderful review of the book. I can't wait to share book 2 with everyone...and I'm most excited to start writing book 3....so much I want to share but my lips are sealed!!!



"After The Ending hooked me into the idea from the back cover blurb, which is a snare trap for books. A good blurb does not always mean a good book. This time it does though. Yes, it is an apocalypse story, and that has been a trend that some steer clear of, with good reason. The difference here though is that the story is more about the endurance of a friendship. Dani and Zoe anchor the cast of highly developed characters, which is a huge plus for me. Characters that are flat and boring, make a story hard to stomach. Even though the story is dealing with the harsh reality of surviving the end of the world, the characters are richly built by the authors. They do not choose to hammer you with all of the details at once though, the slowly reel you into the characters personalities as the story plays out. You know I do not like to give spoilers, so I am not going to highlight all of the characters, but I want you to know that every character has a role that they play. Fairleigh & Pogue crafted every minute aspect of each person and animal so well, they alone make the novel worth the read.
The true star of the show though is the story format that the authors chose to use in telling their tale. Alternating chapters from different points of view, including email communication between Dani and Zoe until that is no longer available, all makes for a fairly unique format. I found that I liked this way of story telling and was easily drawn into the unfolding drama on either side of the world. The story is also one that is beautifully written with a clear understanding of the subject matter. Whether it is survival training, medical knowledge or mental health the authors went into just the right amount of detail to show they were aware of the topic, but not going to hammer you with unnecessary details. There is the right amount of action and drama within the story that the reader is never left waiting for something to happen. Just as you think things may be coming to some level of closure something surprises you and the characters and the story moves further forward.
This is the first book in The Ending Series, and I know I am eagerly anticipating the second book."