Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Ensnared by Rita Stradling

By Rita Stradling
380 pages
Published by Rita Stradling

Plot: Alainn’s father is not a bad man. He’s a genius and an inventor. When he’s hired to create the robot Rose, Alainn knows taking the money is a mistake. 

Rose acts like a human. She looks exactly like Alainn. But, something in her comes out wrong.

To save her father from a five year prison sentence, Alainn takes Rose’s place. She says goodbye to the sun and goes to live in a tower no human is allowed to enter. She becomes the prisoner of a man no human is allowed to see. 

Believing that a life of servitude lies ahead, Alainn finds a very different fate awaits her in the company of the strange, scarred recluse. (2018,

Review:  In this futuristic sci-fi retelling of Beauty and the Beast, Alainn Murphy is a young adult daughter tying to keep her genius/scientist father out of prison.  He needs more time to finish his very human AI robot that Billionaire/recluse, Lorccan purchased from him.  In doing so, Alainn secretly takes the place of the robot in order to give her father more time and keep him from going to jail.  Strangely enough, Lorccan doesn't realize that Alainn is not human because the only humans he'd ever been around were his parents.  They are both dead and he is alone in his super-techy building/tower because of his fear of germs.  He is deathly afraid of 'contamination' and has never left his tower because of this.  His face is also scarred and is uncomfortable in anyone seeing his face.  You find out why later in the story.

Alainn plays the part of AI robot well enough, and as she spends more time with Lor, feelings start to develop.  It was a little quick for me considering she only spent a few weeks with him.  Plus, the screaming sounds she hears at night through the vents should have freaked her out more.  Just saying.  Plus, she sleeps with him knowing he thinks she's a robot.  And he thinks she is a robot during this time too!  Also, she's not held prisoner by Lor, but by the AI computer that controls his techy-tower.  There were also robot monkeys that came out of nowhere.  Robot. Monkeys.  I'm just going to leave it at that.

There are a lot of details as to what is going on inside and outside the tower.  Let's just say it's all very strange yet pertinent to the climax and ending of the story.  Definitely a unique and creative twist to the classic tale.  

I originally though this was YA, but Alainn is already a working adult and so it's classified as New Adult in Goodreads.  Since there are mature scenes in this book, I would only recommend for 18 and up. 

*Received a DRC for an honest review.

Rating: 3.5 Hearts!

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Lone Star Book Bloggers' Tour: Why I hate Green Beans by Lincee Ray (Enter Giveaway!)

and other confessions about relationships, reality tv, and how we see ourselves
   Genre: Humorous NonFiction / Memoir Publisher: Revell Facebook   ⎸ Twitter
Date of Publication: February 6, 2018
Number of Pages: 208

Scroll down for the giveaway!

Insecurity. As women, we all struggle with it. Our skinny jeans mock us. Our age-defying serums with flecks of gold refuse to erase our crow’s feet. Our social media feeds taunt us with everyone else’s picture-perfect lives. If you’ve ever felt uninteresting, unlovable, or unattractive, you’re ready for Lincee Ray’s particular brand of hilarious (and hard-hitting) self-reflection.
Like a trustworthy friend, she shows us that the fastest way to happiness is to embrace ourselves in all our imperfection and trust that God knew what He was doing when He made us. From maneuvering the muffin top to navigating the sketchy waters of singleness to walking the judgmental halls of the workplace, Lincee’s laugh-out-loud look at real life reveals many of the key truths she’s learned about her identity:
Yoga pants are your friend, Jesus sees you, and green-bean diets are never the answer.

“Lincee is a brilliant writer. She once described me as ‘smelling of worn leather, a vintage nine iron and swagger.’ She pretty much nailed it. She is definitely worthy of the final rose.” —Chris Harrison, host of ABC’s Bachelor franchise and Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
"I found myself laughing out loud, wiping away a few tears, and cheering her on every step of the way. Lincee is the best friend you wish you had. Get ready to fall in love with her and her fabulous debut book!”  —Melanie Shankle, author of the Big Mama blog 
"By the end of this book, you’ll think of Lincee as a favorite friend: someone who shoots straight, finds the funny in every situation, and reminds you what matters most. You are in for a treat!” —Sophie Hudson, author of Giddy Up, Eunice and cohost of The Big Boo Cast podcast

Throughout her book, Lincee Ray highlights key points in her life that shaped who she is today.  She is candid, she is hilarious, and best of all - she is real.  Lincee Ray is your everyday girl:  insecure, emotional, and vulnerable.  We all have a bit of Lincee inside each of us and that's what makes her book so genuine.  She is not afraid to tell you her most embarrassing stories.  She wants you to know you're not the only one who has them. And that it's okay to not be perfect! If you grew up in the '80s and '90s, you will definitely enjoy all the throwbacks she talks about such as, Sea Breeze, NSync, and Hot Stix!  

But Lincee's life is not all happy-go-lucky and perfect.  She has been through her share of ups and downs.  Some were painful and others just plain devastating. But, through it all there was one constant in her life: Jesus.  Through Him she reflects all her trials, and through Him she realized she was never alone.  Lincee's life threw her some hard lemons, and just because you try to live a good, moral life doesn't mean you won't have your share of troubles and tragedies.   From online dating to speed dating, Lincee is still trying to find her way in life.  But, through it all she understands something very definitive and true.  She writes, "But God knows me. He knows my struggles. He knows my desires. He labels me His 'child' and will do great things through me if I let Him. Acknowledging that He is good and His timing is perfect" (pg. 152).  

An inspiring and heartfelt read from start to finish. 

Rating: 5 Hearts!

Lincee Ray is an accidental blogging superstar from Texas who now writes for and the Associated Press. An active speaker, she can be found at her popular website, where she makes it clear that she believes it’s important to tell your story—even if it makes you seem a little crazy. Connect with Lincee!
 ║ Blog║ Facebook  Twitter    Instagram Podcast  -------------------------------------
Copy of Why I Hate Green Beans with a signed book plate, $50 Barnes & Noble Gift Card, and Lincee's Loves Basket which includes: Rave travel hairspray, Minnie Mouse ears, Vodka*, Heartbreakers Candy, Dr. Pepper, chocolate rose, and green jelly beans.
2nd PRIZE:
Copy of Why I Hate Green Beans with a signed book plate, $25 Barnes & Noble Gift Card
3rd PRIZE:
Copy of Why I Hate Green Beans with a signed book plate, $10 Barnes & Noble Gift Card
(U.S. Only; *proof of age required for vodka)

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Monday, February 19, 2018

LSBBT Bloggers' Choice Awards for Best Mystery/Suspense, Romance, & Best Fantasy/Alt. History

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Click to learn more about:

Best Mystery / Suspense, Best Romance,
& Best Fantasy / Alternate History