Monday, December 19, 2011

Review: The Deepest Cut by JA Templeton

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The Deepest Cut
J.A. Templeton
Release date: June 27th, 2011

Goodreads / Purchase

Sixteen-year-old Riley Williams has been able to see ghosts since the car crash that took her mother’s life and shattered her family. Guilt-ridden over the belief that she’s somehow responsible for her mom’s death, Riley is desperate to see her mother’s elusive spirit to gain her forgiveness.

When her father moves the family to Scotland so they can all start over, Riley believes her life couldn’t get worse––that is until the ghost of nineteen-year-old Ian MacKinnon catches her purposely cutting herself. An uneasy truce quickly turns into friendship, and soon Riley’s falling hard for Ian.

Riley believes her gift could help Ian end the curse that has kept him tied to the land for centuries, but that would mean letting him go forever and she’s not sure she is strong enough to do that. As if her life wasn’t complicated enough, the spirit of the woman who killed Ian returns and she’ll stop at nothing to keep Riley from helping Ian find eternal peace.

*A copy was provided by JA Templeton for review purposes*
If you thought Anna Dressed in Blood was scary – It has Nothing on this one! Don’t get me wrong I really enjoyed Anna and thought it was creepy and a lot of fun. But seriously scary? Not really. The Deepest Cut gives us an actual spine-chilling ghost story that will make your hairs stand on end. Kind of like the equivalent of this: Click here at your own risk! (You know you want to!)

Riley has been able to see ghosts since her mom died a few months ago. To start over, her family moves to Scotland in a great big house that used to be an inn. She soon meets this ghost, Ian, who lived in the castle across the street and was murdered by a jealous servant who has cursed him to roam the earth for eternity. This servant – Laria – is determined to stop Riley from trying to help Ian. Let me tell you, this Laria is terrifying! And if you think ghosts can’t hurt the living, you’re wrong. Laria is evil and goes to extremes to try to get Riley to stay away. I’m a real sucker for ghost stories. Even though they scare me to death, I absolutely enjoy reading about them. The Deepest Cut is one of the best ghost stories I’ve read. Although, there were a few elements that I found unnecessary to the story (though not enough to lessen my liking of the book). Like how Riley would cut herself. I felt as if that storyline often got put on the backburner and forgotten for a while. It did help with the character development a little, yet, while I didn’t mind the side-plot, it does feel expendable. I’m also wondering why Tom was so adamant on having Riley spend time at the mausoleum. He seems like a strange character that I hope we get to find out more about later on.

Along with the hair-raising, there is also romance in this story: a convincing and passionate romance. Riley is falling fast for Ian who is clearly gorgeous, but a relationship with a ghost can’t really be real, can it? I loved how the relationship was intertwined with the ghost plot, as well as how much chemistry there was between the two. Ian is a wonderfully mysterious character that pulls on your heartstrings. It’s certainly a really unique relationship that you know can’t have a happy ending. However, JA Templeton leaves us with a killer cliffhanger that will make you rethink it all. I was extremely happy to find out the next installment is due at the end of the month because it’s definitely one of those fun-but-I-may-die-waiting type of endings.

A real page turner full of fear, love, sadness, along with bittersweet ending, The Deepest Cut will be greatly enjoyed by readers who love ghost stories that leave you undoubtedly spooked and full of mixed emotions.

5 Hot Espressos

In My Mailbox (14)

Posted by on 12/18/2011 • 99 Comments

“In My Mailbox” is a meme, created by Kristi at The Story Siren, that features books I have received/ purchased/ borrowed during the week.  Wow, so did you know there are only 14 days left in 2011? And that means only 1 year left until the end of the world! Eeek – Must. Read. Fast!!Here’s what I got for review this week (click on cover for Goodreads):

  I want to thank  B.D. Swan, Simon & Schuster, Simon & Schuster Canada, Flux Books, and Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group for the review copies. I have won (yay):   I have won this from the wonderful Dani over at Refracted Light. (Thanks again Dani!) I was gifted (yay):  From my dear MaryAnn at Chapter by Chapter I got this great Pledge swag…

Fresh Batch (Dec 18th – 24th)

Posted by on 12/17/2011 • 15 Comments

Exclusively titled for Xpresso Reads, Fresh Batch features the hottest releases of this upcoming week. Flavour of the week: =”1″>

Touch of Power

Maria V. Snyder Goodreads / Purchase 

Laying hands upon the injured and dying, Avry of Kazan assumes their wounds and diseases into herself. But rather than being honored for her skills, she is hunted. Healers like Avry are accused of spreading the plague that has decimated the Territories, leaving the survivors in a state of chaos.

Stressed and tired from hiding, Avry is abducted by a band of rogues who, shockingly, value her gift above the golden bounty offered for her capture. Their leader, an enigmatic captor-protector with powers of his own, is unequivocal in his demands: Avry must heal a plague-stricken prince—leader of…

Review: The Clairvoyance Clock by KM Parr

Posted by on 12/16/2011 • 23 Comments

The Clairvoyance Clock(Alex in Wunderstrande, #1)K.M. ParrRelease date: November 22nd, 2011

Goodreads / Purchase

For seventeen-year-old Alexander Rosengrant, the recent war in Wunderstrande was anything but victorious. Angry that he was forced to stay home while his friends risked their lives as soldiers, Alex harbors resentment toward his Uncle Brody, Lancaster’s star general. In the midst of this controversy, the mention of a mad scientist’s strange heirloom soon propels Alex on a risky journey, leading him to question all that Lancaster had been fighting for. Along the way, Alex discovers that not only is his life a tangled mess of lies, but the situation surrounding the war was nothing he could have ever imagined.

*A copy was provided by KM Parr for review purposes* I really thought I wasn’t going…

Masquerade Tour Stop

Posted by on 12/15/2011 • 34 Comments

I am honored to have Cambria Hebert, author of Masquerade, drop by Xpresso Reads today for a very interesting guest post: She’s going to announce her dream cast for the characters in Masquerade as well as a fantastic giveaway that you do NOT want to miss!

Before we begin, let’s see what Masquerade is all about:

MasqueradeCambria HebertRelease date: December 16th, 2011by Otherworld Publications

Goodreads / Purchase

Before. Everything was so much better Before. I wasn’t haunted by nightmares, my place at school was secure and my face was flawless. Now, I’m a freak and everything has changed. The worst part is that I can’t remember the night I was sentenced to the shadows. The memory has been stolen from me and I just can’t shake the feeling…

Waiting on Wednesday (14)

Posted by on 12/14/2011 • 63 Comments

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event that is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine and spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.  My pick this week:

                                    Vestige                                     Deb Hanrahan

                                    Release date: June 25th, 2012

EMERGENCY ALERT SYSTEM Civil Authorities have issued a Civil Danger Notification Until Further Notice.

The following message is being transmitted by the request of The United States Government. An unknown number of citizens have gone missing. Authorities are trying to locate the missing persons. Residents are asked to stay in their place of residence. If you must go out, do not travel alone and carry proper identification.

Please do not call 911 to report missing persons. Emergency Call Centers and local law enforcement are no longer fully staffed. The United States…

Review: Masquerade by Cambria Hebert

Posted by on 12/13/2011 • 24 Comments

MasqueradeCambria HebertRelease date: December 16th, 2011by Otherworld Publications


Before. Everything was so much better Before. I wasn’t haunted by nightmares, my place at school was secure and my face was flawless. Now, I’m a freak and everything has changed. The worst part is that I can’t remember the night I was sentenced to the shadows. The memory has been stolen from me and I just can’t shake the feeling that someone, something is out there -watching.

Just when I think I have my life handled, Sam, with his intimidating golden stare and shiver inducing voice, makes me realize that I don’t know anything. He makes me see that my scars don’t matter. That they never mattered. I can’t help but fall for him, completely unknowing that he…

Dusty Reads (12)

Posted by on 12/13/2011 • 36 Comments

Dusty Reads is a weekly meme, hosted here, featuring a book that has been sitting unread on my home shelf for some time. To participate, add your link at the bottom.  If you wish, you can grab the button and find more information here.

My pick this week:


FallenLauren KateReleased December, 2009Goodreads / Purchase

There’s something achingly familiar about Daniel Grigori.

Mysterious and aloof, he captures Luce Price’s attention from the moment she sees him on her first day at the Sword & Cross boarding school in sultry Savannah, Georgia. He’s the one bright spot in a place where cell phones are forbidden, the other students are all screw-ups, and security cameras watch every move.

Even though Daniel wants nothing to do with Luce–and goes out…