Tag Archive | A.G. Howard

Review: Slasher Girls & Monster Boys

Title: Slasher Girls & Monster Boys

Authors: Stefan Bachmann, Leigh Bardugo, Kendare Blake, A. G. Howard, Jay Kristoff, Marie Lu, Jonathan Maberry, Danielle Paige, Carrie Ryan, Megan Shepherd, Nova Ren Suma, McCormick Templeman, April Genevieve Tucholke, Cat Winters

Date of Publication: August 18th, 2015

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Goodreads Summary:

A host of the smartest young adult authors come together in this collection of scary stories and psychological thrillers curated by Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea’s April Genevieve Tucholke.

Each story draws from a classic tale or two—sometimes of the horror genre, sometimes not—to inspire something new and fresh and terrifying. There are no superficial scares here; these are stories that will make you think even as they keep you on the edge of your seat. From bloody horror to supernatural creatures to unsettling, all-too-possible realism, this collection has something for any reader looking for a thrill.

My Review:

This book of short horrorish stories wasn’t as amazing as I thought it would be, especially with all the awesome authors that are in this one! But, it wasn’t bad either, just okay overall. There were some really good ones, though.

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The Birds of Azalea Street by: Nova Ren Suma I didn’t really get this one. It’s inspired by the Birds but in no way does it compare to that at all!

In the Forest Dark and Deep by: Carrie Ryan – This was a very cool and creepy Alice in Wonderland inspired story with a giant March Hare!

Emmeline by: Cat Winters – Very good! I loved the setting and the writing! Emmeline was a very interesting character!

Verse Chorus Verse by: Leigh Bardugo – This one was weird but not in an amazing way. I was surprised that I didn’t like this more because I generally love Leigh Bardugo!

Hide-And-Seek by: Megan Shepherd – Ah—yes. This one was really great! The main character was also one smart cookie! Plus the whole trying to avoid death thing was awesome!

The Dark, Scary Parts and All by: Danielle Paige – This one was all kinds of fun! The story was engaging, and Damien was an interesting character!

The Flicker, The Fingers, The Beat, The Sigh by: April Genevieve Tucholke – I really liked the two inspirations for this one. The story was good, but I hate the main character Theo. He was such an ass and got pretty much what he deserved.

Fat Girl with a Knife by: Jonathan Maberry – This one was all kinds of fun! Also Dahlia was a freaking awesome character!

Sleepless by: Jay Kristoff – There was one twist that I did not see coming, but the other one I did. I actually really liked this one at first, but then it faded to just being okay.

M by: Stefan Bachmann – I couldn’t get into this one!

The Girl Without a Face by: Marie Lu – Marie’s writing is always good, but this one was just okay for me.

A Girl Who Dreamed of Snow by: McCormick Templeman – The writing was good in this one, but I wasn’t completely captivated.

Stitches by: A.G. Howard – I thought this one was pretty awesome, and Howard’s writings and descriptions are always so entrancing.

On the I-5 by: Kendare Blake – I liked the ending on this one!

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Do you like horror stories?

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Favorite Books of 2017!

This year was pretty hard, but I got it down to my top ten reads that came out in 2017!

 

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What’s your favorite read from 2017?

The Hummingbird Heart: Excerpt + Giveaway

I am so
excited that
THE HUMMINGBIRD HEART
by A.G. Howard is available now and that I get to share the news!
 
If you
haven’t yet heard about this wonderful book by Author A.G. Howard, be sure to
check out all the details below.
 
This blitz
also includes a giveaway for a 5 AMAZING Prizes courtesy of A.G. and Rockstar
Book Tours. So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the
bottom of this post.
About The Book:
Title: THE
HUMMINGBIRD HEART
Author: A.G. Howard
Pub.
Date: 
August 15, 2017
Publisher: Golden Orb
Press
Pages: 234
Formats: Paperback,
eBook
 
Set 19 years after The Architect of Song:
Shortly after escaping a circus tragedy, young Italian orphan, Willow
Antoniette, seeks refuge at The Manor of Diversions—a holiday resort in England
born of a ghost story. For eleven years, she’s raised alongside the children of
the resort’s owners: Julian, his twin brother, Nick, and their younger sister
Emilia. Now that Willow is of marriable age, she’s determined to escape
finishing school along with everyone’s efforts to make her a proper lady. The
only man she wants to spend her life with is Julian, after all. Yet how can she
tell him, when he thinks of her as nothing but a friend?
As a machinist and engineer, Julian Thornton prefers a governable life.
He can’t allow his ever-deepening attraction for Willow to distract from his
amusement park plans to lure a younger, wealthier clientele to their family’s
resort. In hopes to escape Willow and find investors, Julian sets off on a
transatlantic ocean liner headed for the St. Louis World’s Fair, unaware Willow
has secretly stowed away on the same ship.
A tiny, mute orphan named Newton and a pair of haunted Italian shoes
bring Willow and Julian face to face on deck. Forced to work together to solve
the mystery of Newton and his vindictive, ghostly companion, Julian and Willow
can no longer fight their untapped passions. However, time to admit their true
feelings is running out, for the ghost and her murderer have enlisted them as
unsuspecting pawns in a karmic game of cat-and-mouse that could cost all of
them their lives.
Grab book 1!
 

Title: THE
ARCHITECT OF SONG

Author: A.G.
Howard
Pub.
Date:
 August 15, 2016
Publisher: Golden
Orb Press
Pages: 425
Formats: Paperback,
eBook
Find it: AmazonGoodreads
 
A lady imprisoned by deafness, an architect imprisoned by his past, and a
ghost imprisoned within the petals of a flower – intertwine in this love story
that transcends life and death.

 

For most of her life, nineteen-year-old Juliet Emerline has subsisted – isolated
by deafness – making hats in the solitude of her home. Now, she’s at
risk to lose her sanctuary to Lord Nicolas Thornton, a twenty-seven-year-old
mysterious and eccentric architect with designs on her humble estate. When she
secretly witnesses him raging beside a grave, Juliet investigates, finding the
name “Hawk” on the headstone and an unusual flower at the base. The moment
Juliet touches the petals, a young English nobleman appears in ghostly form,
singing a song only her deaf ears can hear. The ghost remembers nothing of his
identity or death, other than the one name that haunts his afterlife: Thornton.

 

To avenge her ghostly companion and save her estate, Juliet pushes aside her
fear of society and travels to Lord Thornton’s secluded holiday resort, posing
as a hat maker in one of his boutiques. There, she finds herself questioning
who to trust: the architect of flesh and bones who can relate to her through
romantic gestures, heartfelt notes, and sensual touches … or the
specter who serenades her with beautiful songs and ardent words, touching her
mind and soul like no other man ever can. As sinister truths behind Lord
Thornton’s interest in her estate and his tie to Hawk come to light, Juliet is
lured into a web of secrets. But it’s too late for escape, and the tragic love
taking seed in her heart will alter her silent world forever.

 

International and NYT bestselling author, A.G. Howard, brings her darkly
magical and visual/visceral storytelling to Victorian England. The Architect of
Song is the first installment in her lush and romantic Haunted Hearts Legacy
series, a four book gothic saga following the generations of one family as –
haunted by both literal and figurative ghosts – they search for
self-acceptance, love, and happiness.

 

New Adult: Recommended for ages 17+.

Excerpt:


In the dream, Willow was a child again. With each barefooted step around
the stacks of baggage in steerage, she found them taking on new shapes:
pyramids of clowns, bears, horses and feathered performers, all balanced atop
one another. She was back at the circus, albeit a much hazier and dimmer
rendition than she remembered. She skipped along the center ring, excited to be
home at last. Grit and discarded trash snagged between her little toes. A
spotlight clicked on to illuminate a trunk. From within came a thumping sound,
and girlish giggles.
“Tildey!” Willow cried out, racing across the distance to find her doll,
her pigtails slapping her face and neck upon each bounding step. The creak of
abandoned trapezes swung overhead, cutting intermittently through a thick cloud
of fog. Yet it wasn’t fog. It was tobacco—a stench that seeped into her
leotard, her tights, her very pores, until she could taste it coating her
tongue like bile.
The spotlight shifted from the trunk to a trapeze just above her where a
shape took form in the light: a graceful silhouette in a shimmery leotard and
glistening tutu.
“Mama?” Willow whispered in the dream, forgetting Tildey for the chance
to see her mother perform once more.
The trapeze vanished into thin air but the aerialist continued a controlled
descent toward her, held in place by harnesses attached to the center pole. A
face came into view, painted white like a clown, with bloody eyes and a hollow
of a mouth—stretched wide on a perpetual scream. Willow yelped and squeezed her
lashes shut, willing away the creature … for it was not Mama.
When she opened them again, the freakish performer exploded into a flock
of hummingbirds made of ink. They skittered around Willow, buzzing wings
scraping her skin and hair, imprinting tattoos everywhere they touched. She
screamed and stumbled backwards, bumping into the trunk which was somehow right
behind her. A tinkly, off-key lullaby drifted from inside the giant box. The
lid shook and shuddered, as if something wanted out.
Whimpering, Willow tried to back away, but her feet grew heavy. She
looked down and ballet shoes, covered in steel spikes, swallowed them up. The
empty harness that had held the ghastly aerialist slithered toward her like a
snake, coiling itself around her legs and arms to hold her in place.
On the final haunting strains of music, the trunk’s lid popped open, and
out from the midst rose a hunched old man, holding Nadia’s haunted shoes upside
down. Blood and water gushed out of them—a stench of copper and stagnancy—and
the man laughed with a voice that gnawed into her bones like a thousand
snarling wolves.
About A.G. Howard: 

 

A.G. Howard
was inspired to write SPLINTERED while working at a school library. She always
wondered what would’ve happened had the subtle creepiness of Alice’s Adventures
in Wonderland taken center stage, and she hopes her darker and funkier tribute
to Carroll will inspire readers to seek out the stories that won her heart as a
child.
When she’s not writing, A.G.’s pastimes are reading, rollerblading, gardening,
and family vacations which often include impromptu side trips to 18th century
graveyards or condemned schoolhouses to appease her overactive muse.
Giveaway Details: All International
(1) Grand
prize: Signed set of The Architect of Song & The Hummingbird Heart PB
(1) First Place prize: Signed The Hummingbird Heart PB
(1) Second Place prize: Signed The Hummingbird Heart poster
(3) Third – Fifth Place prizes: Signed The Architect of Song
& The Hummingbird Heart swag pack sets

 

 

 

 

Ends on August
22nd at Midnight EST!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

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Did you enter the giveaway?

 

Review: The Hummingbird Heart

Title: The Hummingbird Heart

Author: A.G. Howard

Date of Publication: August 15th, 2017

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Goodreads Summary:

Set 19 years after The Architect of Song.

Shortly after escaping a circus tragedy, young Italian orphan, Willow Antoniette, seeks refuge at The Manor of Diversions—a holiday resort in England born of a ghost story. For eleven years, she’s raised alongside the children of the resort’s owners: Julian, his twin brother, Nick, and their younger sister Emilia. Now that Willow is of marriable age, she’s determined to escape finishing school along with everyone’s efforts to make her a proper lady. The only man she wants to spend her life with is Julian, after all. Yet how can she tell him, when he thinks of her as nothing but a friend?

As a machinist and engineer, Julian Thornton prefers a governable life. He can’t allow his ever-deepening attraction for Willow to distract from his amusement park plans to lure a younger, wealthier clientele to their family’s resort. In hopes to escape Willow and find investors, Julian sets off on a transatlantic ocean liner headed for the St. Louis World’s Fair, unaware Willow has secretly stowed away on the same ship.

A tiny, mute orphan named Newton and a pair of haunted Italian shoes bring Willow and Julian face to face on deck. Forced to work together to solve the mystery of Newton and his vindictive, ghostly companion, Julian and Willow can no longer fight their untapped passions. However, time to admit their true feelings is running out, for the ghost and her murderer have enlisted them as unsuspecting pawns in a karmic game of cat-and-mouse that could cost all of them their lives.

My Review:

I have really liked all of A.G. Howard’s books. Morpheus is one of my all time favorite characters from her Splintered series. I also really loved The Architect of Song which was the first book in this series.

I love that each book can be read as a stand alone, but I think you should read each one because the first book connects to the second book, and it’s quite nice seeing characters from The Architect of Song. One of my favorite aspects about this book was the setting. I love the whole gothic atmosphere type vibe, and then the stuff about aerialists/acrobats had me entranced.

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Photo Credit

The Hummingbird Heart has the perfect amount of swoon and sensual scenes where it isn’t over the top and mixes perfectly with the well thought out story. Julian and Willow were awesome characters, and I felt like they complimented each other and helped make each other better. There were some scenes that had me smiling and giggling. Anddddd I normally do not giggle!

This book was loaded with mystery, action, romance and addiction. I couldn’t put it down and kept wanting to know what was going to happen in different areas, with the romance, the mystery, all of it! I need to know what is going to happen in the next character’s book as well! I highly recommend this gorgeously written series!

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Have you read The Architect of Song?

August 2017 Reads

For the month of August I will be reading these ARCs!

This is my favorite ARC that I read that is coming out in August! You should definitely check out The Hummingbird Heart!

 

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Other August releases

 

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What are you reading this month?

Review: RoseBlood

Title: RoseBlood

Author: A.G. Howard

Date of Publication: January 10th, 2017

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Goodreads Summary:

In this modern day spin on Leroux’s gothic tale of unrequited love turned to madness, seventeen-year-old Rune Germain has a mysterious affliction linked to her operatic talent, and a horrifying mistake she’s trying to hide. Hoping creative direction will help her, Rune’s mother sends her to a French arts conservatory for her senior year, located in an opera house rumored to have ties to The Phantom of the Opera.

At RoseBlood, Rune secretly befriends the masked Thorn—an elusive violinist who not only guides her musical transformation through dreams that seem more real than reality itself, but somehow knows who she is behind her own masks. As the two discover an otherworldly connection and a soul-deep romance blossoms, Thorn’s dark agenda comes to light and he’s forced to make a deadly choice: lead Rune to her destruction, or face the wrath of the phantom who has haunted the opera house for a century, and is the only father he’s ever known.

My Review:

Rune is sent away her senior year to an arts school where odd things begin to occur, and she runs into a boy named Thorn who she believes is the actual Phantom of the Opera. She must face her past and an unknown future that could slip away into darkness at the hands of this musical creature.

So this book is a stand alone which is a plus, and it is told in both perspectives between Rune and Thorn. Rune was a likable character, and she seems more human because she is battling demons of her own. There was a lot of being in her head versus dialogue which I was wanting a little more dialogue, but being inside her head you could really feel those musical thoughts and all the energy pulling her in different ways.

I liked the characters she meets at her school such as Sunny, Audrey, and Jax. They all seemed to have interesting small stories, but I wish that there would have been more about them. Thorn was a whole different can of worms. I loved him! Even with his creep factor which was even more intriguing. His back story is haunting and deeply moving and was the best part of the book.

The Phantom has always been an interesting character, and here it is like you want to hate him, but then you want to feel bad for him. It made him the perfect villain, and the atmosphere and world building had that gothic feel throughout that made the mood much more intense.

It did seem like it took a while for Rune and Thorn to interact, and I just wish there would have been more dialogue between them and getting to know each other. The chemistry of them being drawn to each other was definitely there, and there were some great moments between them. The sock scene being my absolute favorite!

I still like the Splintered series and The Architect of Song more than RoseBlood, but it was still very good because A.G. Howard’s writing is always so well down and beautiful.

 

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How does this book sound to you?

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Favorite Retellings

toptentuesday

 

 

 

 

 

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.
This week’s topic is Top Ten ALL TIME Favorite Books Of X Genre, and I chose retellings

 

I love retellings when they are good! I have read a lot of terrible ones though!

 

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What is your favorite book of all time and from what genre?