Thursday, November 20, 2014

FELIX Blog Tour - November 20

Title: Felix (5th Street, #5)
Author: Elizabeth Reyes
Genre: NA | Contemporary Romance
Release Date: November 13, 2014
Synopsis

They say the only good thing about hitting rock bottom is that it can't get any worse . . . or can it? 

World famous boxing champ, Felix Sanchez, had it all—the fame, the fortune, and all the women any man could ask for. When the hours of partying followed by hours spent in court and in rehab begin to outnumber the hours he spends training, losing his title comes as no surprise to everyone. The world assumes he deserved to lose it.

Only those closest to Felix know the real truth behind his sudden downward spiral. And if Felix has his way, no one else ever will. With an uncertain future ahead of him, he heads back to his roots—5th Street—the gym that started it all for him. It's where he meets the humble but mighty little Ms. Ella.

The only times Felix had ever decided to forgo the usual meaningless fling and try a real relationship he was burned badly. Now the adorable but tenacious self-defense instructor has him considering this love thing one more time.


Then just when he begins to worry that his past is letting his possessive and jaded heart get the best of him, he's blindsided in the most brutal way—he's brought to his knees—to what could be the one low in his life he may never recover from.

 Grab Felix 
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Teaser:
He wasn't just a sports star; he was a full-blown celebrity. He'd been featured in music videos, and even had his own highly successful line of sports apparel. As expected, in person, he was larger than life. She watched as he took his seat again and leaned over to Abel, who sat next to him. She may've lost all respect for the athlete he'd once been, when he seemed to lose his love for the sport and went all Hollywood instead, but she could definitely see why so many women wanted a piece of him. As much as she hated to admit it... he was AMAZING.


✿ Grab the rest of the series ✿
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 About Elizabeth 

"I write because I must. It's not a choice or a pastime, it's an unyielding calling and my passion." ~Elizabeth Reyes~

USA Today Bestselling Author, Elizabeth Reyes continues to answer her calling on a daily basis. Since releasing her debut novel FOREVER MINE (MORENO BROTHERS #1) in 2010 she has since published six more in that series, FOREVER YOURS, SWEET SOFIE, WHEN YOU WERE MINE, ALWAYS BEEN MINE, ROMERO and MAKING YOU MINE, with more stories about the Moreno family and their friends to come. She's also published a second series, 5th Street which includes, NOAH, GIO, HECTOR, ABEL. FELIX the fifth in the series is scheduled to release November 13th 2014. Her Moreno Brother's spinoff series FATE includes FATE, & BREAKING BRANDON, there is also more of this series still to come. Her latest release and first in a brand new series is DESERT HEAT about the diverse but equally sexy Santiago Brothers living in Las Vegas.

When she's not writing (which is rare)she spends as much time as she can with her husband of over twenty years, two teen children, Great Dane, Dexter and big fat lazy cat, Tyson.


✿ FOLLOW TOUR. GO HERE FOR THE SCHEDULE ✿

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Author Guest Post by Elizabeth Reyes

Topic suggestion - Reflect on a day and life of a writer

Reflection on a day and life of a writer. I'll just change that to ... life of THIS writer. Because while all writers have many things in common our day to day lives differ in many ways.

I consider myself extremely lucky to be living my dream. I do what I LOVE for a living.  I write. I almost don't want to give you a sneak peek of my life because I'm afraid you might hate me. But alas it's not all rainbows and unicorns so I'll share the good with the bad. Although admittedly I try to be more of a glass is half full type of person so it's mostly rainbows and unicorns.

On a typical day where nothing out of the ordinary is going on. No releases, no signings or phone calls with agent or publishers etc. Just your typical day of no plans other than to write. I usually start off by waking at around 3 am. Not because I'm that devoted to my passion but because I've always had a mild to severe insomnia. Like my ENTIRE life. I can't be mad because it's where I sincerely think my love for storytelling and reading began.  Some nights I'd stay up reading or telling myself a story in my head until about two or three. Other nights I'd fall asleep and wake around two or three and be up until four, five or even six in the morning! It was brutal particularly when I had to be in school or work early in the morning. So now that I don't have to clock in it makes life much easier. But the insomnia hasn't lessened.

The sad part is my mind is not fully awake at that hour. I'm still very groggy so I can't write. I don't even want to get out of bed. I either read or give into one of my other guilty pleasures and play Candy Crush or one of my other several online games I'm addicted to. So the start of my day varies if I actually slept through the night I'll be up as early as six or seven go get my coffee and cookies or toast. Come back to my cave which is just a few feet away from my bed and start the day.

First I go through all my email. I catch up on my social media.  Check in with my author group and my street team. I let my "assistant" know if anything needs to go out, ordered, signed up for etc. Finally when I'm done with all that I'd like to say I turn it all off and just write but I'm just not disciplined for that. I do make a conscious decision that "It's time to write" and dive into it but I'm constantly stopping to check my tweets, FB updates, emails etc. Some days however because every day is different.  I can knock out  anywhere from 5 -15k words before I realize "Holy shit I've written this much!" It just depends on what part of the story I'm at. If it's a particularly juicy part that is basically writing itself despite my protests "No! She can't do that! OMG! What is she thinking!" I can't stop. I have to keep looking at the train wreck and before you know it I wrote a BIG chunk of the story and managed to stay off the internet long enough to do it.

For the most part all this happens in my sleep clothes. In the summer it means I'm usually wearing pajama shorts or yoga pants and a loose t-shirt minus the bra. ALWAYS minus the bra unless I have to leave the house at which the bra flies off as soon as I walk back in the door. In the winter because I live in particular frigid part of California I'm in my warm PJ's and fuzzy slippers ALL day. This has been cause for some embarrassing moments when I've had UPS or sales people come to the door and I have no choice but to greet them at 2 in the afternoon in full on pajamas. I've sheepishly signed many a packages muttering something to the likes of "I uh... I work for from home."

I'm always plotting.

ALWAYS.

It never stops. I could be outside watering my grass, taking a shower, making dinner, even sitting in the hot tub holding a glass a wine on a romantic Friday night with my hubby and my mind is still thinking about that next scene I'll be writing tomorrow. Sorry, babe! =/

My day or writing usually ends when I finally call it a night. Sometimes that's as early as five others it could be nine or ten. It just depends on where in the story I am and if I can pull myself away from it and call it quits for the day.

Now for the not so good parts of being a writer. I think for the most part I'm over these but some things you NEVER get over.

 

The bad reviews. I remember once up on a time, in the very beginning where I let a bad review ruin my entire day. You have to understand when I first started this I had no intentions of this becoming a career. I was just curious to see what others thought of my book. Something that for years I kept SO secret. NO ONE knew I was writing. I didn't talk about it to anyone and suddenly it's out there for everyone and ANYONE to take a stab at it. I naively thought if they don't like it they just won't say anything. It's what I would do! Lol So I ventured into writing my next book (which in the beginning I hadn't even planned on writing more than my first) I'd read my reviews for my first book religiously and it would affect my writing mojo so bad I'd call it a day early because all I could think about was the negative comments about my writing, story-telling skills or lack thereof, etc. But I've since gotten over them. After gosh 15 books now I've accepted I will never please EVERYONE. I've even learned to laugh at some of the bad reviews. I won't lie some of the particular hateful ones still sting a little but I try to stay away from ever reading those. Because  if you do, let me tell you, this brings me to the next not so good part of being a writer.

 

Self doubt. This little bitch STILL sits on my shoulder shaking her head making faces and stupid little "Pfft!" noises as I write. She used to be real loud and obnoxiously and I'd let her and then delete entire chapters or scenes based on her bitter comments. Over the years I've gained some control. She still rolls her eyes, crosses her arms in front of her with an attitude and whispers things like "I'm just sayin... it's a risk!" But at least she's not screaming anymore. I've come to the conclusion that I'll never do away with her. She's here to stay. Unfortunately Self Doubt is something that I think every artist in every platform whether its writing, paining, cooking whatever, will ALWAYS deal with even if they can keep her down to a annoying whisper "Just sayin! You could still tweak it some more!" In a way it's a good thing. She keeps me grounded. But there's not need to feed her and help make her louder. Reading those damn bad reviews and or negative comments will do just that so don't!

Back to the good part of a day in my life. The escape of immersing myself into a completely different world where I get to call all  the shots. Reading, emails, comments messages from readers who really got it and loved it.  Hearing the enthusiasm of my loyal readers and my street team. Geez who knew I'd have a group of amazing women from all over the world discussing my books, my characters etc. It's still so surreal to me! It makes it all worthwhile. So while there is a little negative that goes with the overwhelming positive in a day of a writer, I wouldn't trade it for anything. 

Hands down the best job I've had in my life! =D          




Thursday, November 13, 2014

New Release: FELIX by Elizabeth Reyes

Title: Felix (5th Street, #5)
Author: Elizabeth Reyes
Genre: NA | Contemporary Romance
Release Date: November 13, 2014
Synopsis

They say the only good thing about hitting rock bottom is that it can't get any worse . . . or can it? 

World famous boxing champ, Felix Sanchez, had it all—the fame, the fortune, and all the women any man could ask for. When the hours of partying followed by hours spent in court and in rehab begin to outnumber the hours he spends training, losing his title comes as no surprise to everyone. The world assumes he deserved to lose it.

Only those closest to Felix know the real truth behind his sudden downward spiral. And if Felix has his way, no one else ever will. With an uncertain future ahead of him, he heads back to his roots—5th Street—the gym that started it all for him. It's where he meets the humble but mighty little Ms. Ella.

The only times Felix had ever decided to forgo the usual meaningless fling and try a real relationship he was burned badly. Now the adorable but tenacious self-defense instructor has him considering this love thing one more time.


Then just when he begins to worry that his past is letting his possessive and jaded heart get the best of him, he's blindsided in the most brutal way—he's brought to his knees—to what could be the one low in his life he may never recover from.

✯ Grab the rest of the series ✯
AmazonAmazon UKB&NKoboiTunes

About Elizabeth ✯

"I write because I must. It's not a choice or a pastime, it's an unyielding calling and my passion." ~Elizabeth Reyes~

USA Today Bestselling Author, Elizabeth Reyes continues to answer her calling on a daily basis. Since releasing her debut novel FOREVER MINE (MORENO BROTHERS #1) in 2010 she has since published six more in that series, FOREVER YOURS, SWEET SOFIE, WHEN YOU WERE MINE, ALWAYS BEEN MINE, ROMERO and MAKING YOU MINE, with more stories about the Moreno family and their friends to come. She's also published a second series, 5th Street which includes, NOAH, GIO, HECTOR, ABEL. FELIX the fifth in the series is scheduled to release November 13th 2014. Her Moreno Brother's spinoff series FATE includes FATE, & BREAKING BRANDON, there is also more of this series still to come. Her latest release and first in a brand new series is DESERT HEAT about the diverse but equally sexy Santiago Brothers living in Las Vegas.

When she's not writing (which is rare)she spends as much time as she can with her husband of over twenty years, two teen children, Great Dane, Dexter and big fat lazy cat, Tyson.


✯ Giveaway ✯
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Friday, November 7, 2014

Review: THE WET WOMAN by Alejandra Díaz Mattoni

Magdalena "Magda" Amador is a killer-for-hire. Spending her teenage years in forced prostitution, befriending the pharmacist who lived next door to the brothel, and building up a steely facade made her the perfect candidate for the murder-for-money lifestyle. But now it's time to come home. Upon her return to Southern California, she attempts to fit into a family unit who doesn't understand what she's been through and suspects she's a psychopath-which may not be entirely incorrect. And they don't have much room to point fingers anyway. They're embroiled in a money laundering and people smuggling business, which is currently under attack. Magda, as recalcitrant as a mule, sets out to unmask the threat and serve her own brand of justice. She wants to protect her family, but what she needs is to make amends with her wrongdoings, face her past traumas, and finally find a place in the world where she can fit in. High stakes, cold blood, and dark humor spiral around this fierce, female assassin, whose journey takes her through Baja California, Barcelona, and suburban Los Angeles in a snarky combination of crime noir and chick lit. Magda's story is an action-packed and emotional exploration of taking responsibility for your choices and paying for those of your parents.





Reviewed by: Celia
Rating: 3 stars

 

Review: Magda is the Wet Woman, the one who gets her hands dirty. She is a professional killer-for-hire working with a guy named Mike.

I was intrigued with the idea of the assassin, and I thought that Mike and Magda made a pretty good team. At some point, I even pictured the two as Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie in that movie, Mr. and Mrs. Smith. But I had a hard time seeing Magda as a killer with her being so ensconced into a modern family. Was Magda living a double life? Did her family not know she was an assassin? How can she have hot dogs at a family picnic one day and get rid of a dead body the next?

Additionally, I didn’t understand the concept of the “Wet Woman.” What did that mean?

For the most part, the writing was light-hearted and witty. However, there were too many characters and too much information to absorb at one time.

Overall, this was an okay read, but the plot may have been a little too complex.



Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Book Giveaway: THE WET WOMAN by Alejandra Díaz Mattoni


Magdalena "Magda" Amador is a killer-for-hire. Spending her teenage years in forced prostitution, befriending the pharmacist who lived next door to the brothel, and building up a steely facade made her the perfect candidate for the murder-for-money lifestyle. But now it's time to come home. Upon her return to Southern California, she attempts to fit into a family unit who doesn't understand what she's been through and suspects she's a psychopath-which may not be entirely incorrect. And they don't have much room to point fingers anyway. They're embroiled in a money laundering and people smuggling business, which is currently under attack. Magda, as recalcitrant as a mule, sets out to unmask the threat and serve her own brand of justice. She wants to protect her family, but what she needs is to make amends with her wrongdoings, face her past traumas, and finally find a place in the world where she can fit in. High stakes, cold blood, and dark humor spiral around this fierce, female assassin, whose journey takes her through Baja California, Barcelona, and suburban Los Angeles in a snarky combination of crime noir and chick lit. Magda's story is an action-packed and emotional exploration of taking responsibility for your choices and paying for those of your parents.



5 AUTOGRAPHED COPIES WILL BE GIVEN AWAY

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Q&A with Alejandra D. Mattoni




Alejandra D. Mattoni lives and works in Los Angeles. When she’s not reading, her favorite way to relax is to put up her feet and write. You can find other stuff she has written at http://www.alejandradiazmattoni.com. If you have questions about the book or anything else you think she might have an answer to, e-mail her at alejandra.d.mattoni@gmail.com. And, her twitter is @alediazmattoni.

 
Mattoni has a master’s degree in comparative literature and a master of divinity in theology. The Wet Woman is her first novel.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thewetwoman
 



 
 
1.       How did you come up with the idea for the The Wet Woman and what was the development process like?
 I was driving down to Santa Barbara about two and a half years ago when I remembered something from my childhood. I’m not sure if this actually happened, or if it was a nightmare I had, but I remember that around the time I was seven I was eavesdropping on my parents and hear them discussing a friend. They were saying he wasn’t allowed to come into the house because he had lost a huge amount of money gambling and had, in order to pay his debt, handed over his stepdaughter.
 As an adult, the memory still terrified me, and in the following months I began to wonder, what happened afterwards? Was she still alive? If so, how did she get back home? How long did it take?
There was never any doubt in my mind that she survived whatever happened to her. The question was always centered on how her childhood forms her and how it affected her ability to live and love. About six months afterwards, I started writing an outline. Once the outline was done, I wrote every day for two hours before I went to work, and then would edit the book at night. In all, I revised the whole text 23 times.
 
 
 
 
2.       Was there any critical or philosophical meaning behind the term “Wet Woman” as it pertained to Magda?
Yes! I’m a big reader. (On average, I read about two or three books a week.) One of my pet peeves is that female leads are either “strong women”—women who are brainy, self-possessed, resilient, and don’t show a lot of emotional range beyond tenacity and rage—or “emotion” women (that is, women who cry and despair and lament the situation) who invariably need somebody else to rescue them. I also, not surprisingly, rarely saw adult Latino/Hispanic/Mexican-American female characters as main characters within mainstream literature.
And so, one of my goals was to write a main character who was clearly, non-negotiably Latina and who showed a full range of emotions. Because I think that resilient women, women who really do survive and thrive in our culture, do so not only because of anger and a desire to survive, but by wading through rivers of tears and carried by winds of joy. Another defining goal of mine was to embody that great Frida quote, “Intenté ahogar mis penas, pero las cabronas aprendieron a nadar.” And so, in that sense, Magda is “wet” because she’s swimming alongside that which would otherwise kill her. And yes, Magda is La Mojada because she is a transgressive person, she’s crossing borders she’s not quite authorized to. 
 
 
 
 
3.       There seems to be a great chemistry between Magda and Mike. Ever consider adding a romantic element with these two?
 Up until the 11th revision, Mike and Magda were lovers! Each time I revised, I would have a Pirandello moment. That is, my characters started talking to me, complaining about what I was making them do and why I was doing it. As I was revising, I realized that Mike (like most of the men I know in my life) wants a healthy relationship and actively seeks one. I spent a few weeks ignoring the niggling voice, but I finally realized that Mike and Magda were intimate friends, and possibly former lovers, but that he would be the one who would distance himself because, knowing her best, he would know better than to start a family with her.
 
 
 
4.       Magda has felt that she never fit in anywhere. Why do you suppose that is?
 I think her childhood experience—the brothel, the life abroad, and the negotiations/compromises she had to make in order to get back to California—has shaped her so that she is utterly foreign.  I believe her siblings want to bring her back into the fold, but her experience is too different from them and none of them, including Magda, have the emotional intelligence or stability to coax her back into the family fabric.
 
 
 
 
5.       Your book has a combination of crime noir and chick lit. What inspired this idea?
I struggled a lot with finding a steady, believable narrative voice that wasn’t dark or depressing. I think that one of the main traits of our culture is that we can face very dark things with laughter. We have perfected the art of black gallows humor. (Look at how festive our Day of the Dead is.) So, because of the plot and the themes, I think noir fiction was the only genre that was appropriate, but the voice demanded a chick lit element. And so, my mix of chick lit noir was born.
 
 
 
6.       What do you hope readers will gain from you book?
Here’s the deal. Magda is crazy, but her siblings love her and as far as they can, try to accept her for who she is. Magda herself, though she has trouble living with its effects, doesn’t deny any of her history. I’d like people to notice that. Each and every character in my book could easily be the villain in any other book. They are not good people. And yet, they are human with very universal needs. I’d like people to remember that, that even villains are human beings.
 
 
 
 
7.       What inspired you to be a writer?
I’m not sure it was inspiration, but instead a ceaseless need to communicate. I’ve written three other novels, but this was the first novel I decided to publish.
 
 
 
8.       What do you like best and what do you like least about being a writer?
There is nothing quite as pleasurable (for me) as seeing the finished product. The worst part is the solitude. Writing is mostly a one-person journey with the occasional editor/beta reader dropping in for a writerly visit.  Because of this, I’d like to start a Latino network of writers. Something like a writer’s group where we would not only share and help each other with our writing, but also serve as a literary platform for each other. There is already groups out there, but they are not specifically Latino based. I’m looking to start one. (To that end, if you are a Latino writer, and want to participate, e-mail me!).  I think this is why writing groups and writing buddies are vital for any writer.
 
 
 
9.       Are you working on anything right now?
 
I’m writing another novel—it centers on a road trip an aunt and a niece take across California. And, I’m also starting to outline the follow up to The Wet Woman. How do the Amadors go about solidifying their empire once? There is a baby on the way—what implications does this have and what becomes of this pregnancy?
 
 
 
10.   And, finally, what do you think is in store for the future of Latino literature?
I want a Latino boom and I want to be at the forefront of it! I am joking, of course, and of course, I’m not. There are a few Latino authors who regularly enter appear on the New York Times bestseller list, and there are a few more that have been canonized into American Literature. However, there are many so many great Latino authors currently out there who are not read and much less discussed. In my dream of dreams, I would like Latino literature to enter the mainstream consciousness in the same way the Latin American book became popular and canonized worldwide.
 

 
A review of The Wet Woman is coming up next!
 
 

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Review: LIFE OBSERVED: REALITY MEETS FICTION by Margo Candela

Who said a wife is obligated to have a passionate opinion regarding bedroom drapes? What do you say to a friend when you can't stand her husband? When is okay to encourage a friend to lie to her new boyfriend? Where is the line between being friendly and flirting? How do you prove to your parents that you really are an adult?

The who, what, where, why and how about friends, family, marriage and life in Los Angeles slightly fictionalized to protect the innocent, the not so innocent.







Reviewed by: Bela
Rating: 4 stars



Review: Funny and smart—two things Margo Candela once again delivers in this collection of short stories, anecdotes, and essays. Reading more like blog entries, like something out of a diary, I was still enthralled by the quirky bluntness of Candela’s “life observations.” She basically says the loud part quiet and the quiet part loud.

My favorite anecdote came from “Baby Steps: When Friends Ask Uncomfortable Questions.” In this one, Candela’s friend is uncomfortably walking on egg shells around a baby some co-worker brought in, and she asks if she should have a baby. Knowing her friend, Candela suggests having a plant or a pet first. Then her friend comes back saying, “If I do pop one out, I'll never bring it to work…I don't need to force people to tell me my kid is the cutest thing they've ever seen. Most babies are ugly or at least real weird looking.” [Life Observed: reality meets fiction. SugarMissile, LLC. Kindle Edition.] Not being a baby person myself, I totally agreed.

One question that stuck out at me was: Where does Margo meet these people? Even though I know “the characters’ names have been changed to protect the innocent and not-so-innocent,” as it says on the back cover, they are still based on people she knows. It seems to be that her life has a soap opera revolving around it, which makes for some pretty addicting reads.

Once again, I will keep an eye out for the newest release from Ms. Margo Candela.