Monday, October 16, 2017

A Kiss Before Doomsday by Laurence MacNaughton

Series: Dru Jasper #2
290 p.
Publisher: Pyr
Published: 7/11/17
Source: From publisher for review
When sorcerers disappear off the streets of Denver, the only person to notice a pattern is Dru, proprietor of The Crystal Connection and newly-minted sorceress. Monstrous creatures are attacking and dragging off anyone with magical powers. Signs point to forbidden necromancy in the hands of someone trying to fulfill the prophecy of the apocalypse scroll. 
With the dead rising from the grave, Dru fears someone is picking up where the Harbingers left off half a century ago. Now more than ever, Dru needs half-demon Greyson and his infernal car, Hellbringer. Though Greyson is missing and presumed dead, Dru believes he’s alive—and trapped at the center of this evil.
Dru will need her friends—and her enemies—trusting in Rane’s strength, Opal’s wisdom, and her own crystal magic to infiltrate the mountainous fortress of a powerful sorcerer intent on bringing about doomsday. 
Because the moment the prophecy is fulfilled, legions of undead will rise to consume the souls of everyone on Earth…
My thoughts:

I reviewed the first one where I didn't know what to expect and found myself having some fun with it. I knew I'd probably feel the same way with this book, but things got in the way so I didn't get to this story until now. I'm so glad I did read it.

It has the same fun as the last one and I think surpasses it. I knew what to expect and the characters really grew on me this time. They all matured a bit but not too much (which is a good thing). Plus, with the awful cliffie of the last book, this one gives you all the answers and only an open ending for the next book. No real cliffies in this one! YaY! My only complaint is that Hellbringer, the car with an attitude, really didn't get a part in this one. He was there, he saved their collective behinds but it wasn't quite the same as the first. I missed that and it was my favorite part of the first book. Still, he is there and will be in the next one. So, I'm good. :)

I give this fun short book 4 stars. I recommend this series now since you get the answers you didn't get from the first book. Plus with these being very short (but not short on action) you could easily read them back to back. I do suggest reading these in order. I think those who like a fun PNR will enjoy this series.
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Wednesday, October 11, 2017

On My Wishlist: The Hazel Wood and The Passion of Cleopatra

Oh this one looks interesting and the worldbuilding here sounds like something I would enjoy.


The Hazel Wood
by Melissa Albert
368 p.
Publisher: Flatiron Books
Published: 1/30/18
Seventeen-year-old Alice and her mother have spent most of Alice’s life on the road, always a step ahead of the uncanny bad luck biting at their heels. But when Alice’s grandmother, the reclusive author of a cult-classic book of pitch-dark fairy tales, dies alone on her estate, the Hazel Wood, Alice learns how bad her luck can really get: Her mother is stolen away―by a figure who claims to come from the Hinterland, the cruel supernatural world where her grandmother's stories are set. Alice's only lead is the message her mother left behind: “Stay away from the Hazel Wood.” 
Alice has long steered clear of her grandmother’s cultish fans. But now she has no choice but to ally with classmate Ellery Finch, a Hinterland superfan who may have his own reasons for wanting to help her. To retrieve her mother, Alice must venture first to the Hazel Wood, then into the world where her grandmother's tales began―and where she might find out how her own story went so wrong.

Anne Rice's The Mummy was actually the first Rice book that I read (yep before her vampire books). LOVED it and was so sad that she never continued it even though she said she planned on it. Now her son is involved and I can't wait to see what happens next. I may have to do a reread it was so long ago. 

The Passion of Cleopatra
by Anne Rice and Christopher Rice
Series: Ramses the Damned #2
416 p.
Publisher: Anchor
Published: 11/21/17
Ramses the Great, former pharaoh of Egypt, is reawakened by the elixir of life in Edwardian England. Now immortal with his bride-to-be, he is swept up in a fierce and deadly battle of wills and psyches against the once-great Queen Cleopatra. Ramses has reawakened Cleopatra with the same perilous elixir whose unworldly force brings the dead back to life. But as these ancient rulers defy one another in their quest to understand the powers of the strange elixir, they are haunted by a mysterious presence even older and more powerful than they, a figure drawn forth from the mists of history who possesses spectacular magical potions and tonics eight millennia old. This is a figure who ruled over an ancient kingdom stretching from the once-fertile earth of the Sahara to the far corners of the world, a queen with a supreme knowledge of the deepest origins of the elixir of life. She may be the only one who can make known to Ramses and Cleopatra the key to their immortality—and the secrets of the miraculous, unknowable, endless expanse of the universe.
So what are you wishing for this week?
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Monday, October 9, 2017

Art Book Post: Everyday Watercolor by Jenna Rainey


Genre: Art Instruction
224 p.
Publisher: Watson-Guptill
Published: 10/10/17
Source: NetGalley and publisher for review

A contemporary paint-every-day watercolor guide that explores foundational strokes and patterns and then builds new skills upon the foundations over the course of 30 days to create finished pieces.

This beautifully illustrated and inspiring guided watercolor-a-day book is perfect for beginning watercolor artists, artists who want to improve their watercolor skills, and visual creatives. From strokes to shapes, this book covers the basics and helps painters gain confidence in themselves along with inspiration to develop their own style over the course of 30 days. Featuring colorful contemporary art from Mon Voir design agency founder and Instagram trendsetter Jenna Rainey, this book's fresh perspective paints watercolor in a whole new light.

My thoughts:

This is probably one of the best beginning watercolor books that I have come across in a long time. I really like how it breaks down skills and puts it in easy to understand format. I would love to see an accompanying video since watercolor is a visual art. I think that it would also be helpful to grasp the concepts much easier. However, once you do the exercises one or more times it should become more clear in what skill the book is trying to impart. For those new to this art, I would suggest taking each project as it comes in the book. The skills build upon the other.

For more advanced artists, the earlier exercises might seem too simple, but it is also good to go back to the beginning and just practice. You should be able to fly through those first chapters or skip around in this case. The last projects were you put the pictures together would probably be more interesting here and I do like how her simple and bright washes keep the paintings clear and high value. Makes the art look very fresh and it seems to be a trend in the watercolor illustration market.

In conclusion, I give this art book 4 stars. I would recommend this book to someone wanting to try watercolor and some good practice for those that have been painting for a while.

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Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Art Post: Scary Potter by Dylan Pierpont

I HAD to share these pictures Dylan Pierpont made of alternative scary covers of Harry Potter. These are so good and I think these really reflect the books so well in a very scary way.

from Dylan's Deviant Art Page

from Dylan's Deviant Art Page

from Dylan's Deviant Art Page

Those of us who are fans do not need the title to know which books these pictures belong. Wouldn't you love to read a graphic Harry Potter novel by this artist?

I thought this is perfect for the season! Check his stuff out. There is more Harry Potter stuff in his links.

Artists Infomation
Portfolio: dylanpierpont.com/

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Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Something Strange is Going on Here...

You may have noticed that the blog is going under some cosmetic changes. I've wanted to change it for a long time now and make it more my own. I finally got a good stylus and so I don't feel like I'm drawing with my elbow. That is why I stuck to simple changes and things that were easily manipulated. Now I'm learning how to use Procreate (a great little program that only costs a few bucks at the iTunes store). I have a lot to learn, but I have had fun and decided to replace some things. I do hope you like!

Change in the blog header:
I think this will reflect better the direction it is going. I also could not put my pup somewhere in the header. The little monster would have made it but I started designing it before I had her. I also thought it would be too crowded but I may put the monster in a post header. Not sure yet.

Some of my post headers will have changed:
You've seen this one already and I have more coming. I may end up tweaking it here or there so I will share as I get to them. Some are already up on the meme page.

I also changed my button. The other picture is still active so it won't reflect the change until you use the one I've provided. Thank you for those that have used it.

<a href="http://melissawatercolor.blogspot.com/"> <img src="https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4487/37269621386_0978f2d11e_o.jpg"></a>

Oh and speaking of buttons. I only have a couple of people who haven't moved from photobucket and I think the rest are updated. I hope I haven't missed anyone. If I have, I apologize.

Yea, I already see things I want to change but I think I will leave it until I get more done or if it bothers me too much. Whichever comes first. LOL

Well, I do hope you like the direction the blog goes. I know not everyone will love what I will post but you never know when something may suddenly seem interesting. Here's hoping!

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