Friday, January 27, 2012

REVIEW: Voices of the Dead by Peter Leonard

Title: Voices of the Dead
Author: Peter Leonard
Publisher: The Story Plant
Format: Ebook
Release Date: 1.17.12

 The year is 1971. The place is Detroit. Harry Levin, a scrap metal dealer and Holocaust survivor, has just learned that his daughter was killed in a car accident. Traveling to Washington, DC to claim the body, he learns that the accident was caused by a German diplomat who was driving drunk. This is only the beginning of the horror for Harry, though, as he discovers that the diplomat will never face charges – he has already been released and granted immunity. Enraged and aggrieved, Harry discovers the identity of his daughter’s killer, follows him to Munich, and hunts him down. What Harry finds out about the diplomat and his plans will explode his life and the lives of everyone around him.


 Peter Leonard is a very skilled writer and in his book Voices of the Dead, it shows. I have to admit that at first, I found the writing style to be a little confusing, but as you progress you fall in stride right away.  

Harry Levin's daughter is killed in a car accident, and when he finds out that the person who caused the accident is a drunk, German diplomat that won't face ANY charges for his crime, he decides it's time to take matters into his own hands. After a few close calls, and failed attempts to try and kill his daughters murderer I found myelf fighting to put the book down.  

Voices of the Dead moves fairly quickly and evolves very well. Even though this is not the typical type of book that I read, I really enjoyed the way Peter Leonard gives us flash backs of Harry Levin’s life so that we learn what happened to his family, what he went through growing up, we learn a bit about his wife and of course, his daughter.


3.5 out of 5 hearts. Happy Reading!!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Random Topic

If you follow the link below, you'll be happy to see that it'll take you a an amazing review going on over a Sparling Reviews. There are alot of great things up for grabs!!  GOOD LUCK TO EVERYONE!!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Random Topic

     For those of your who are pregnant or already have children. I'd love to know about any specific cravings you might have had. For example, during my pregnancy I just about obsessed over strawberries that I would dip in nutella. And the only craving that I had that ever made me cry was the dumbest one. LOL. I like cheese, but I can live without it. But there was ONE day that I wasn't really hungry but I WANTED to eat colby cheese and fresh baked bread from a bakery. Well, here in Puerto Rico, there are bakeries all over the place, and one right around the corner from where I live. My husband bought bread, and it wasn't until I saw it that I knew I wanted to eat it with cheese. The onlly thing was that by the time he got, home and went back to the bakery, it was already closed and I didn't want to bother him and make him go to a 24hr walmart or walgreens just for cheese. :(  He felt so bad, that the next day he came home with the fresh baked bread AND the cheese and I ate it almost entirely on my own in one sitting. (YUM. I still remember how great it tasted...) 

I'd love to hear some stories from you guys about your cravings!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012


 Author: Leslie Deaton

Today I'm really excited to have a chance to interview author Leslie Deaton. Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to ask you a few questions about your new book, A Marked Past.

     Thanks for having me! The last year has been one of the most exciting of my life; I finished and released my first young adult novel A Marked Past. You can’t see me right now but I’m definitely smiling because publishing A Marked Past was a dream of mine that came true. I’ll be honest, it wasn’t an easy one to achieve. The journey was a tireless, gut wrenching, emotional, rollercoaster but it was all worth it when the first printed copy of my book arrived. When I opened the book I could feel A Marked Past finally come to life for me.

How long have you been writing?

     This personal success was a long time coming. I’ve been writing since I was about 10 years old, poems, short stories, essays, anything creative that piqued my interest. So for the last 20 years I’ve been quietly practicing my skills and forming the characters and storyline in my head. I paid attention to everything around me. 

What inspired you?
      I grew up in a creaky old farm house that scared me, so I put Lyla in one too. I listened to old stories about my grandma making salt circles to ward off dark spirits so I researched Wicca and made it a part of the book too.

How did you get the idea for this book/setting?
     As for a setting, I grew up in Ohio but I was always fascinated by the Salem Witch Trials, so I drove to Salem and wandered the streets. I let the cold wind threaten to steal all my warmth and listened as the trees creaked in the wind. The place haunted me. I gazed up at all the old houses, walked the cobblestone streets, and watched the quirky people move about the little town. And when I left, it all stayed with me, so I created Lyla’s history there, among the cobblestoned streets and the eerie past that still lives in the haunted alleyways. It’s always these kinds of things that inspire me, a history of a place that haunts me, or the memory of a person that brings a smile to my face, those things linger in my memory and inspire me to create a new life for them in the form of a story.

Is there any advice you might have for new writers?

     If you want to get published write your story and have people read it, comment on it, critique it, then revise revise revise. I know you’ll think, but I’ve read it, I love it, but trust me, it can and will always get better with each revision. When you’re ready to query an agent check out my Blog ( and use the links. Agents like Kristen Nelson provide great examples of query letters. Or, if you choose to go out on your own, check out Createspace. Whatever you choose keep an open mind, keep working at it, and try not to get too discouraged along the way. The road is long but the smile you’ll get when your first copy arrives is worth it! A Marked Past is available in ebook and paperback copies at

Also, be sure to watch for the sequel A History Renewed coming in the fall of 2012.

Once again I'd like to thank you for such a great interview and wish you the best on any and all upcoming work. 

After such a great interview, comes a great GIVEAWAY! Leslie has been more then generous and is giving one lucky winner a physical copy of her book "A Marked Past" and another lucky winner an ebook. Thats right, this giveaway is INTERNATIONAL! (YAY)

There are no super complicated rules in order to enter, all you have to do is comment on what you thought about the interview, GFC Follow, and follow Leslie Deaton on Goodreads. Thats it! See? Easy! 

(Please leave your email as well, I forgot to mention that one...)

And there is also another giveaway of the book December Moon by Suzy Turner and 2 more lucky winners will be choosen (international as well). Both giveaways will end 1.18.12 The lucky winners will be drawn randomly be myself and will be contacted asap. HAVE FUN AND GO NUTS!!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Best Christmas EVER!!

I have to admit that this Christmas has been the BEST! Not only because it's the first that I get to spend it with my little girl Adrianna, but because she and I (even though my husband couldn't make it...) got to spend it in Florida for a big family reunion. We had a really good time, and my family fell in love with my AJ (Adrianna Joelys). Since we live in Puerto Rico, and the majority of my family lives in FL. we obviously dont see each other very often. So the chance for us to all get together and spend such a wonderful time together was amazing. Below is a picture of myself with my baby, my family and my grandfather in the center.

Another reason why my Christmas was so excellent is because of what I got from Santa... LOOK!

Ok, well this picture looks funny since I can only post it upside down, and I have to admit that the 2 that were on sale was a gift I made myself. The others were from my brother. (He's so sweet)

Then, to start the New Year, I got a nice surprise:

These 2 were in my mailbox 2 days later!! (YAY me!!)

So, did you guys get what you wanted for Xmas?? How did you celebrate Xmas and New Year?

Monday, January 2, 2012

GUEST POST & REVIEW: A Marked Past by Leslie Deaton

I'm SO excited to have my very first guest post be hosted the very talented Leslie Deaton! I hope you enjoy this as much as I do!

(Leslie, once again, thank you so much for taking some time out of your busy schedule and hosting such a great guest post)


Creating Characters
When I started writing A Marked Past, I knew I wanted to write a young adult novel about a young girl living in Salem Massachusetts; but I wasn’t sure who would actually tell my story. Who would walk through the streets of Salem? Who would possess the magic that my storyline needed?

My main character’s physical attributes came from old photos of my grandmother as a young girl. Her dark hair, fair skin, and bright blue eyes inspired me to create a character with the same features. Her name however, came from the last place you might expect, from team members at my day job. I was working as a corporate consultant, and while chatting with a coworker I heard the name Lyla. It’s what he wants to name his first daughter, “It means night,” he said. My mind began to wander, a name meaning night, it was the perfect name for a young witch. The family name Mercer also came from a coworker; it’s Melissa’s last name at the office.

Next I had to create a series of characters that matched the history and ethnicity of the families in town. Most of them are Irish so I made a list of names I liked and looked up the meanings. But some of the names carried a bit more weight with me, and so I delved into researching the origins and meanings of certain character’s names.

Hana is one that I took the most care with besides Lyla. She has a brooding spirit, quiet intelligence, and an undying dedication to her family, so she needed a substantial name. Mohana is the one I picked for her; it means bewitching, and shortened to Hana it’s still modern enough for current day readers.

Next came Hana’s older sister, Sage. She has experienced tremendous loss, must learn to overcome their differences and is ultimately responsible for to fighting to save her family. Her name may seem cliché, but she holds the family’s wisdom, is gentle, and kind. These characters may not be real, but I hope that they come to life on the pages of my book. And I hope that I chose well when searching for their names. Some of the characters are named after people that I love (Leah) some are variations of cats that intrigue me (Henry), and some were just born on the pages of A Marked Past (Birdie).

For all the writers out there, chose your character’s names based on a feeling. It may sound normal to you (Veranda) but no one else, but if it works, then keep it. After all, I was completely obsessed with Hermione for years and I’d never heard of her name before picking up Harry Potter. 

Title: A Marked Past
Author: Leslie Deaton
Publisher: CreateSpace
Release Date: 9.28.11
Pages: 356

Lyla Mercer’s life changed the moment her dad was murdered, and again when she heard that she could be next. Forced to move to Salem for safe keeping, Lyla soon discovers her family has a dark history in the small town, and when a glossy black moon appears on the back of her neck she becomes the newest part of that legacy. Her family is marked and being hunted, but Lyla may be just the weapon they need to survive. Lyla attempts to ignore the danger, pretending to be normal, but whispers and rumors follow her everywhere. She thinks nothing can ever be normal for her again until she meets Caleb, the minister’s son, and the absolute wrong boy to be dating a witch. He’s everything she wants to be, just a normal kid from a normal family. At least that’s what she thinks, but nothing is as it seems in Salem. Caleb has secrets that rival her own. Until recently, her father's murderer has managed to keep his true identity a secret, but when Lyla uncovers the truth about him, nobody is safe, especially her.

This is an excellent book. 

Lyla Mercer is your typical teenager who loves her boyfriend, hangs out with her best friend and is considered popular. But everything changes when her father is killed in a hit and run, and her mother is so devistated by his death, that she decides they should move from Chicago to Salem. Just like any teenager, Lyla HATES the fact that she has to leave her bestfriend, her boyfriend, and everything she knows and loves. 

Once in Salem, she finds it fairly easy to make new friends and even find out that she has family that she had never met or even knew existed. 

Then she receives a mark on the back of her neck and along with it, abilities that she would have thought were impossible. But along with her new abilities, she learns that her family has many secrets that need to be kept a secret. Why? Because Lyla learns that her father didn't just die, but that he was murdered, and what could be worse than that? Learning that she, and her entire family could be next on the killers list. 

In this book, you find that the "good guys" might be bad, the "bad guy" isn't just bad, he's evil, and Lyla's new boyfriend Caleb just might be caught somewhere in the middle.

I found myself up at all hours of the day unable to put down this book. Leslie Deaton did an amazing job of finding the perfect combination of romance, mystery, nostalgia, and of course, the paranormal. I can't wait to read book to in this series since A Marked Past finishes very well with a nice cliffhanger.


5 of 5 hearts. This book does have it's gramatical errors, but nothing you cant overlook. The book itself is excellent. I'll be looking forward to book 2 in the series and any other books Leslie might have on the way as well. Great Job Leslie!