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Book Review – Apocalypse Z: The Beginning of the End by Manel Loureiro

May 12, 2014 1 comment

Apocalypse Z: The Beginning of the End by Manel Loureiro

Book Description:

The dead rise…

A mysterious incident in Russia, a blip buried in the news—it’s the only warning humanity receives that civilization will soon be destroyed by a single, voracious virus that creates monsters of men.

Humanity falls…

A lawyer, still grieving over the death of his young wife, begins to write as a form of therapy. Bur he never expected that his anonymous blog would ultimately record humanity’s last days.

The end of the world has begun…

Governments scramble to stop the zombie virus, people panic, so-called “Safe Havens” are established, the world erupts into chaos; soon it’s every man, woman, and child for themselves. Armed only with makeshift weapons and the will to live, a lone survivor will give mankind one last chance against…

Apocalypse Z

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I was in the mood for another take on the Zombie Apocalypse, so I picked up Apocalypse Z: The Beginning of the End by Manel Loureiro (a Spanish practicing lawyer & author based in Pontevedra, Spain). With an average of 4.2 out of 5 stars on Amazon (and 1,083 5 star reviews!), I figured this should be a good buy.

Apocalypse Z: The Beginning of the End unfortunately didn’t quite live up (to me) to the promise of its 4.2 stars, but if you like Zombie stories, it’s still an okay (if redundant) read. My main problem with the book was that it didn’t really offer anything new to the genre – the author was pretty faithful in his characterization of the zombies, and the plot is the usual survival story covered many times before (by better authors). The setting of the story at the author’s native Spain did keep it  bit more interesting for me in the beginning, same with the origin of the Zombie plague beginning somewhere in Dagestan. Book-Putin’s response was also classic – I think Putin’s government would react the same way :)

The main character in the book is a yuppie lawyer who initially starts blogging as a way of dealing with his grief after the death of his wife, and ended up chronicling his harrowing experiences in a personal journal during the Zombie apocalypse. I thought that the blogging style worked well in the beginning, when the lawyer was slowly waking up to the real threat while trying to go about his ordinary life (going to work, shopping, etc). I was still okay when it got switched to writing a journal (the internet dies during the apocalypse, y’all) – after all, the guy was stuck alone in his home surrounded by zombies. Plenty of time to write one’s thoughts down on paper.

But I did have to suspend disbelief that the lawyer supposedly continued writing in the journal so faithfully (reporting EVERYTHING that happened to him almost daily), even after he went on the run (and spoiler alert! got captured). I mean, it’s kind of hard to think of myself taking a break every now and then from the Zombie mayhem to write down all my previous 24-hour experiences. It really got silly around the last third of the book for me – oh, hey, a horde of zombies have killed a bunch of us! I might die next! but hey, I’ll write down first about what happened in detail starting from this morning…

Personally, if the author was really dead set on the journal aspect, I thought the character should’ve just remained stuck in his home, while he fought going cabin-fever crazy while trying to figure out a way to survive the Zombies. Less travelling / adventuring / gathering companions (including a possible love-interest character whose age – 16/17? – gave me the creeps), and more going into the psychology of survival of a lone wolf-type character maybe.

Apocalypse Z: The Beginning of the End by Manel Loureiro, translated by Pamela Carmell (AmazonCrossing) is available on Amazon.

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‘5 Questions’ Interview With A.W. Hartoin! @AWHartoin

March 1, 2014 Leave a comment

5 Questions

Today I’m thrilled to welcome author A.W. Hartoin to the blog as part of the ‘5 Questions’ with authors interview series!

If you are an author who would like to participate in the series, fill out the questionnaire here! And if you are a reader who wants to suggest an author for the series, just send me an email!


It Started with a Whisper by A.W. Hartoin

Describe your novel It Started with a Whisper in ten words or less

It Started with a Whisper is a tale of revenge gone magically wrong.

Where or how did you come up with the idea for your story?

My son had a teacher who couldn’t stand him and the story came from his desire to teach that teacher a lesson.

It didn’t happen in real life, but there’s a lot of satisfaction in fiction.

Which of your characters (in this book) is closest to your heart and why?

Puppy MacClarity is my favorite character because he’s a really good kid who finds himself doing some pretty bad things.

If you weren’t a full-time author, what other career would you be in and why?

Writing is my day job these days, but before, I was a Sensor Technician in US Air Force. That experience had a huge influence on my writing. I worked almost exclusively with men. Once they got used to me, I got to be part of the club and hear things women aren’t usually privileged to hear. All the male characters in It Started with a Whisper came out the way they did because of those conversations.

Tell us about another book or project you’re excited about

I’m excited about Book two in the Away From Whipplethorn series, Fierce Creatures. It’s a fairy adventure like no other.

Bonus Question! Fill in the blank: If you like ___, you’ll probably like my book too!


A.W. Hartoin

Thanks again for stopping by, A.W. Hartoin! You can learn more about the author via her official website: awhartoin.com, and connect via Twitter: @AWHartoin and Facebook.

 It Started with a Whisper is available on Amazon (Kindle).

Check out A.W. Hartoin’s Amazon author page for more info!

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FREE eBook: Rhythms of Grace by Marilynn Griffith @marilynngriffit! @RevellBooks #Christian (US, UK, Canada, Australia)

July 22, 2014 Leave a comment

Rhythms of Grace by Marilynn Griffith

Rhythms of Grace‘ by Marilynn Griffith (Revell) is available for FREE download on the Amazon US Kindle site for a limited time. Just click here to download! Also on, Amazon UK, Amazon CA and Amazon AU.

*Note that price may revert back to full price at any time

Book Description

Grace Okoye was a promising young dancer when her career was cut short by a brutal assault that left her scarred for life. Twenty years later, when her past gets in the way of her happiness, she heeds the invitation of her dance instructor and returns home to help hurting children and rediscover the rhythms of grace. What she doesn’t expect is to meet a man who already seems to know her beat. But for all they share in common, the biggest thing in Grace’s life is noticeably absent in his–faith. She’s finally found the love of her life, but can she choose between him and God?

Real, raw emotion and the promise of redemption run through this soulful new book from Marilynn Griffith.

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FREE eBook: In High Places by Tom Morrisey @MorriseyWriting! @bethany_house #Christian (US, UK, Canada, Australia)

July 22, 2014 Leave a comment

In High Places by Tom Morrisey

In High Places‘ by Tom Morrisey (Bethany House Publishers) is available for FREE download on the Amazon US Kindle site for a limited time. Just click here to download! Also on, Amazon UK, Amazon CA and Amazon AU.

*Note that price may revert back to full price at any time

Book Description

A Breath From Tragedy, a Whisper from Glory

For Patrick Nolan, every climb tells a story. And now maybe it’s his own …. He’s right at the rim, staring over the cliff’s knife edge and wondering how things went wrong so quickly.

It all started after arriving home from a weekend climbing trip with his father, Kevin. That’s when word reached them. In a silent moment, they’d lost the person most important to them–her death raising unanswerable questions and dangerous doubts.

Launching a new life in a new town to escape their pain, son and father find themselves in danger of being torn apart forever. As his father seeks a route to solace on the dangerous high face of the rock, Patrick finds a path to hope with the unlikeliest of allies–a pastor’s daughter. Together they must discover the one answer that can bring Patrick and Kevin back from the brink of the precipice

Sometimes There’s No Place to Go But Up

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FREE eBook: A Pedigree To Die For by Laurien Berenson @LaurienBerenson! @KensingtonBooks (US, UK, Canada, Australia)

July 22, 2014 Leave a comment

A Pedigree To Die For (A Melanie Travis Mystery) by Laurien Berenson

A Pedigree To Die For (A Melanie Travis Mystery)‘ by Laurien Berenson (Kensington Books) is available for FREE download on the Amazon US Kindle site for a limited time. Just click here to download! Also on, Amazon UKAmazon CA and Amazon AU.

*Note that price may revert back to full price at any time

Book Description

Melanie’ Travis’s life is going to the dogs. With school out for the summer, a stint as a camp counselor falling through, and her sometime boyfriend dumping her for a Las Vegas chorus girl, the thirty-something Connecticut teacher and single mother figures that things can’t get any worse.
She figures wrong…

Everyone knew that Melanie’s Uncle Max had a weak heart. When Aunt Peg finds him dead on the cold floor of their championship kennel, surrounded by eleven whining, prize-winning Standard poodles, she isn’t shocked…and doesn’t panic. But Melanie is surprised when, three days after the funeral, Peg shows up seeking her help. One of her prize pooches is missing — and it’s beginning to look like Max’s sudden demise is more a matter of… murder.

With her four-year-old son Davey happily ensconced in day camp, Melanie manages to maneuver herself into Connecticut’s elite canine circles. Posing as a poodle breeder in search of the perfect stud, she mingles with sophisticated exhibitors and professional handlers…and soon starts feeling a little out of her clas. Until she meets Sam Driver. Although the irresistibly attractive breeder is soon wooing her with seductive candle lit dinners, Melanie resolves to be wary.

Then the killer strikes again, and Melanie realizes that she has been barking up the wrong tree. As events — mysterious and romantic — culminate in the celebrated Westminster Dog Show, she suddenly finds herself on a long leash of intrigue and greed…hot on the scent of a chilling secret to die for.

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Blank Slate by Tiffany Snow @TiffanyASnow (Narrated by Tanya Eby) for $3.95! #Audible

July 22, 2014 Leave a comment

Blank Slate by Tiffany Snow (Narrated by Tanya Eby)

Blank Slate by Tiffany Snow (Narrated by Tanya Eby) is Audible.Com’s Daily Deal, and is available today for just $3.95 (Regular Price:$9.95)! Enjoy!

Product Description:

As a cyber-hacker born into a family of thieves, Clarissa O’Connell thinks she’s seen the worst the criminal underworld has to offer – until her brother is arrested and she’s forced into a pact with the notorious crime boss known only as Solomon to free him.

For FBI agent Erik Langston, the world is divided into black and white, wrong and right. So he’s made it his life’s mission to hunt down Solomon. When Clarissa’s cyberattacks begin to topple Solomon’s enemies, Erik is hot on her trail, believing her to be the key to bringing down Solomon and his empire. But in a single instant, everything changes. Loyalties shift, the past loses meaning, and the hunter becomes the hunted. Now Erik and Clarissa are running for their lives, desperate to stay one step ahead of Solomon’s assassins. Survival means challenging everything they thought they knew – and daring to trust each other.

©2013 Tiffany Snow (P)2013 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

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Categories: Audiobook, Deals Tags: ,

Goldbox Deal of the Day! $100 Off Kindle Fire HDX 7″ 4G LTE

July 22, 2014 Leave a comment

$100 Off Kindle Fire HDX 7

Today only, get $100 Off Kindle Fire HDX 7″ 4G LTE! While supplies last.

Product Description

Today only, save $100 on Kindle Fire HDX 7″ 4G LTE.
It’s perfect for work or play, with an ultrafast quad-core processor, the latest graphics engine, world-class Dolby audio, and a highly portable design.

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Let’s Build by Sue Fliess @SueFliess for $1.99! #Kindle Kids Daily Deal!

July 22, 2014 Leave a comment

FYI, be sure to also check out the new promo: Kindle Countdown Deals: Limited time discounts on Kindle-exclusive books!

I like this new promo by Amazon! We get a special Kindle Kids Daily Deal! And the new deal is…

Let's Build by Sue Fliess

Let’s Build‘ by Sue Fliess and Miki Sakamoto (Illustrator) (Two Lions) is now available at the specially discounted price of $1.99 on the US Kindle site. Also on Amazon CA.

Book Description

 3 – 8  Pre-K – 3rd
Let’s build…a fort! Grab a pencil, draw the plans. We’ll construct it with our hands.
Dad and son hit the hardware store. And then they start to build! Raise the walls up, hoist that beam.
Real construction takes a team! When they’re all done, they’ll have the coolest fort ever!

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Life Lessons for Mastering the Law of Attraction by Jack Canfield @JackCanfield & Mark Victor Hansen @MarkVHansen for $1.99! @ChickenSoupSoul #Kindle Inspirational Daily Deal!

July 22, 2014 Leave a comment

I like this new promo by Amazon! We get a special Kindle Sports Daily Deal! And the new deal is…

Life Lessons for Mastering the Law of Attraction: 7 Essential Ingredients for Living a Prosperous Life  (Chicken Soup for the Soul) by Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen

Life Lessons for Mastering the Law of Attraction: 7 Essential Ingredients for Living a Prosperous Life‘ (Chicken Soup for the Soul) by Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen (Chicken Soup for the Soul) is available at the specially discounted price of $1.99 on the US Kindle site. Also on Amazon CA.

Book Description

A roadmap to achieving your innermost dreams
Do you ever wonder why some people always seem to be at the right place at the right time—enjoying good fortune, health, the ideal mate, happy kids, and achieving more than the average person could ever imagine? Have you wondered what makes them so “lucky” or well connected? People who enjoy a heightened state of living, and have their dreams and goals realized to their fullest potential, have tapped into one of the oldest and influential principles for living a fulfilled life: the Law of Attraction.

Life Lessons for Mastering the Law of Attraction teaches you what you need to know about living the Law of Attraction and creating your own personal success. Jeanna Gabellini and Eva Gregory, master coaches and experts in the Law of Attraction, and Jack Canfield, one of the superstar contributors to The Secret, come together to share with you the powerful and life-changing lessons and techniques of the Law of Attraction.

Filled with exercises, lessons, real-life stories, and proven key ingredients, Life Lessons for Mastering the Law of Attraction, from the creators of Chicken Soup for the Soul, reveals how to master the law’s basic tenets, which include: defining moments in life; creating space to create prosperity; acting “as if”; trusting in intuition; transforming thought; having an “attitude of gratitude”; and changing the impossible to possible. People have been using these techniques for thousands of years to attract their desires and now you, too, will be able to create the life of your dreams.

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