Blog Tour – The Gathering by Bernadette Giacomazzo


Hello everyone and welcome to my blog tour stop for THE GATHERING by Bernadette Giacomazzo hosted by Xpresso Book Tours. Today, I’ll be sharing my review and a giveaway at the end.

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The Gathering
Bernadette Giacomazzo
(The Uprising, #1)
Publication date: March 31st 2018
Genres: Adult, Dystopian

The Uprising Series tells the story of three freedom fighters and their friends in high — and low — places that come together to overthrow a vainglorious Emperor and his militaristic Cabal to restore the city, and the way of life, they once knew and loved.

In The Gathering, Jamie Ryan has defected from the Cabal and has joined his former brothers-in-arms — Basile Perrinault and Kanoa Shinomura — to form a collective known as The Uprising. When an explosion leads to him crossing paths with Evanora Cunningham — a product of Jamie’s past — he discovers that The Uprising is bigger, and more important, than he thought.

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3halfhearts

 Dark and Terrifyingly Enthralling Dystopian Tale 

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I don’t know where to begin with this review. The Gathering by Bernadette Giacomazzo was a fantastic read, but I went through a love/hate feeling with the story. There were some hit on the spot moments that I enjoyed and I think the overall message is important, but I just felt so distressed.

The beginning was kind of a mess and I didn’t really know what was going on. I actually had to go back and read the synopsis and then reread the first two chapters… but it does progressively get better. The vulgar language, sex, and violence also made me feel incredibly uncomfortable, but at the same time, I was so intrigued by the world building and storyline that I kept turning the pages. The plot was satisfyingly well paced and there was never a single dull moment. So many things happened in every single chapter that at times it was extremely difficult to digest. The characters were complex and very fascinating, but it took some time for me to like them. I wouldn’t immediately say that they’re my kind of heroes, but bit by bit, they earned their way into my heart. The story ended with plenty of unanswered questions, but with a promising set up for the rest of the series.

Romance wise… I’m not so sure. I think I’m still undecided on that part of the book. Although it’s always much more interesting for me to read books with romance, I honestly don’t know how it’ll be with this series. There was a past love story and that was quite interesting to read, but I think there’s going to be another one later on. There was this one weirdly unnerving scene that was sort of hinting at a possible romance between two of the MCs. I really can’t say too much without spoilers, but it just didn’t feel right. I don’t know how that relationship will develop in the later book(s), but yeah, that was a big nope for me. It was a little distasteful and well… just creepy.

I thought this book was powerful and captivating, but I do not think I will be picking up the next book. I liked that Giacomazzo weaved a dark, unique, thrilling, and terrifyingly enthralling story that reflects what’s currently happening in the real world and makes it even more bleak. It’s a wonderful conversation starter and it really makes you think about how scary the world is at the moment. But, that’s precisely why I’m personally going to hold off reading the other books. I read for fun and this made me feel so uneasy. I don’t regret requesting for this book though. It was very intriguing and I was very much into the story. It’s just that after going through the whole book, I just don’t want to feel so angry, disheartened and just down…There’s nothing fun about that. I do still want to see how the story ends, so maybe when all the books are out and I’m in the mood, I’ll binge the series.

With uncomfortable scenes, abuse, graphic language, and violence, this book is not for everyone. Lots of triggers for sure, but if you love dark gritty dystopian and science fiction stories, and don’t mind everything I just mentioned, then this book might just be perfect for you. It is a very compelling read.

I received an advance reader copy of this book from the publisher and Xpresso Book Tours. I voluntarily read and reviewed this book so all thought and opinions are my own.

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With an impressive list of credentials earned over the course of two decades, Bernadette R. Giacomazzo is a multi-hyphenate in the truest sense of the word: an editor, writer, photographer, publicist, and digital marketing specialist who has demonstrated an uncanny ability to thrive in each industry with equal aplomb. Her work has been featured in Teen Vogue, People, Us Weekly, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Post, and many, many more. She served as the news editor of Go! NYC Magazine for nearly a decade, the executive editor of LatinTRENDS Magazine for five years, the eye candy editor of XXL Magazine for two years, and the editor-at-large at iOne/Zona de Sabor for two years. As a publicist, she has worked with the likes of Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson and his G-Unit record label, rapper Kool G. Rap, and various photographers, artists, and models. As a digital marketing specialist, Bernadette is Google Adwords certified, has an advanced knowledge of SEO, PPC, link-building, and other digital marketing techniques, and has worked for a variety of clients in the legal, medical, and real estate industries.

Based in New York City, Bernadette is the co-author of Swimming with Sharks: A Real World, How-To Guide to Success (and Failure) in the Business of Music (for the 21st Century), and the author of the forthcoming dystopian fiction series, The Uprising. She also contributed a story to the upcoming Beyonce Knowles tribute anthology, The King Bey Bible, which will be available in bookstores nationwide in the summer of 2018.

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Thanks for stopping by loves! Hope you have a wonderful day!

 

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Blog Tour – One Hundred Promises by Kelly Collins

 

Hello fellow romance lovers and bookish friends. Welcome to my blog tour stop for ONE HUNDRED PROMISES by Kelly Collins hosted by Inkslinger.  Today, I have my review and an exclusive excerpt to share with you, so let’s get to it lovelies!

ONE HUNDRED PROMISES is the fourth standalone in the Aspen Cove series and if you love small-town contemporary romance, you won’t want to miss this one!

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Join Bestselling Author Kelly Collins on another trip to Aspen Cove where anything is possible when it comes to love…

Aspen Cove, Colorado isn’t on Lydia Nichols’s wish list when she finishes her residency at Denver General Hospital, but life delivered several surprising blows. Her long-time boyfriend, who was also her boss, moved on with a nurse and took Lydia’s job with him. No boyfriend. No job. No options. As a favor to her sister, she arrives in the small mountain town for a temporary job as the clinic doctor. Her first question when she gets there is ‘how fast can I leave?’ That is, until sinfully, sexy Wes Covington comes into the clinic seeking care. With him around Lydia may have found a reason to stay—for now.

Wes Covington left his demons in Denver. Working for his family’s architectural firm, he was tired of being almost—almost good enough—almost rich enough—almost loveable enough. He abandoned his penthouse, his high-paying position and his Porsche for simple, small-town life. All he wants is to restore his ancestral home and find a good woman who’ll love him for who he is and not what he’s worth. When Wes meets Dr. Lydia Nichols, he likens her to a hellion with a halo. She’s the perfect mix of sassy and sweet, cunning and compassion, but she’ll never be his unless he can convince her to stay.

Love blooms when the timing is right, but will Lydia surrender her chance at love or can Wes convince her that everything she’ll ever want or need is right in Aspen Cove?

Find out in One Hundred Promises

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Grab your copy of ONE HUNDRED PROMISES on Amazon today!

 

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“Did I kiss you?”
She let out a frustrated breath. “Yes, Wes, did you kiss me?”
He appeared to enjoy her discomfort. “Well, as a matter of fact, I did.”
Ba boom, ba boom, ba boom her heart raced until it became boom boom boom boom.
She dropped her breakfast to the plate and buried her face in her hands. “I’m so embarrassed.”
“Nothing to be embarrassed about.”
The heat of her blush burned her cheeks. She licked her lips, hoping that action would spur a memory. As if she’d taste him. There was nothing. Mad at herself for her lack of control, she lashed out. “Couldn’t have been a good kiss if I don’t remember it.”
“Below par as far as kisses go. You want a memorable kiss, all you have to do is ask.” He reached for the bag of bandages and pulled out the gauze and tape. “Give me a hand?”
“You insult my kisses and now you want help?” Surely the kiss couldn’t have been that bad. How bad could her kiss be?
He moved his hand to the center of the table palm up. “I didn’t insult your kiss.”
She tugged his hand and wrapped the wound with gauze. She might have tugged it a little too tight. Certain she did when he hissed. As much as she wanted him to suffer for his comment, she couldn’t in her right mind torture him, so she loosened the bandage and taped it in place. “You don’t think calling our first kiss subpar is an insult?”
Wes’s laugh filled the air. Even Sarge lifted his head to see what was going on. “Lydia, you asked me to kiss you several times. I refused. Not because I don’t find you attractive. I think you’re stunning.”
“Why did you give in and kiss me?”
He moved his chair so he sat next to her. When he twisted his body, they were close enough for a repeat performance.
“Against my better judgment, I gave in because I couldn’t resist.” He lifted his shoulders and let them drop.
She watched his lips as he spoke—full, lush lips that surely gave memorable kisses. She hated that she couldn’t recall the moment. “Sorry I disappointed you.” Her shoulders tipped forward and her head hung low.
Wes thumbed her chin up, forcing her to look at him. “Lydia, you weren’t a disappointment. We barely brushed lips and honestly you were already passed out when that happened. I told you last night if you really wanted a kiss you needed to ask me for it when you were sober.”
His words worked their way from her head to her heart. “You didn’t want to take advantage of me.” The words came out in soft awe because so many people would have taken what she’d drunkenly offered.
“I’m not that guy.” He let go of her chin and cupped her cheek. “I hear you’re an amazing kisser, Lydia.”
She smiled. “Who told you?”
He leaned forward. “You did,” he whispered across her lips.
“I could do better.” She shifted her body so her knees moved between his thighs. Face to face, their lips were a separated by a breath. “I want to do better.”
“Overachiever?” The hand that had cupped her cheek now cradled her neck.
He was close enough for her to see the gemstone flecks in his eyes. When she inhaled, she breathed in the citrus and spice that mixed with his scent. Lust and need made her dizzy. Her head spun. Unsteady, she palmed his chest for balance. The hard muscle flexed under her hand. Her fingers trailed down his chest to explore every hill and valley of sinew.
She breathed deeply. “Call it what you want, but kiss me.”
Soft and sure, his lips pressed to hers. It wasn’t a frenzied kiss, but a measured moment until she parted her lips to grant him access. He dipped his tongue inside and slid it across her tongue for a languid taste.
Fingers threaded through her hair, he gripped her tight and pulled her closer to deepen the kiss. Sweet like honey, his mouth moved over hers. His soft, velvet tongue danced across hers. She knew he was a busy man, but he sat there and kissed her like he had all day. When he pulled away, he nipped at her bottom lip until he sucked it into his mouth. Rockets of desire shot like fireworks through her body.
With a pop, he released her lip and sat back. His eyes burned with passion. The kind of passion she had always wanted to see from a lover but never did.
“Now that’s a kiss I’ll remember.”

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4halfhearts

A delightfully comforting and romantic story set in a charming small town 

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This book was so swoony and adorable and my newest favorite romance series! Just so utterly in love with Aspen Cove and it’s charmingly lovable characters that I cannot wait to binge the other novels.

I don’t read small town romances that often, but when I do, I always have the warm fuzzies and feel so wonderfully happy. One Hundered Promises by Kelly Collins was no exception. This book was filled with heart tugging moments, steamy scenes, and humorous situations that had me flipping through the pages. I was positively enamored until the end and totally swooned like crazy.

This book also reminded me so much of Hart of Dixie, one of my favorite T.V. shows. If you’ve seen that show and loved it, then you have to read this book, and if not, and you enjoyed this book, go watch that show. They have some similarities, but still different enough that you’ll find something new to love about them. Anyway, I remember being incredibly fascinated by that show and the delightful homey feeling of living in a small town. I was definitely addicted — I’ve seen the entire series twice, and rewatch my favorite episodes from time to time. And that’s exactly how I feel towards this book. I was hooked and never wanted the story to end and I kept rereading my favorite scenes just to spend a little more time in Aspen Cove. It was just that good!

So, obviously, there were many things I enjoyed and loved about One Hundred Promises. The writing was genuine, beautiful, and so full of heart. The characters were very realistic and so relatable and I adored them all so much. The plot was perfectly paced and balanced with sweetness, spice, and a lot of love. There were plenty of heart skipping swoony scenes and moments with warm fuzzies that will make you smile. The romance was beautiful and I enjoyed the relationship between Wes and Lydia. Their chemistry was off the charts and their flirtatious bantering was just so fun. But, what I truly loved most about this book was none other than Sarge. I love all animals, but I’m a dog person at heart and Sarge was just so adorable and spunky.

One Hundred Promises by Kelly Collins was absolutely the sweetest and so beautifully heartwarming. I smiled, I laughed, and I had the best time getting to know this amazing town and fascinating characters. If you’re looking for a delightfully comforting and romantic story set in a charming small town filled with so much love and beauty, then I think this book is perfect for you.

I received an advance reader copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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International bestselling author of more than thirty novels, Kelly Collins writes with the intention of keeping the love alive. Always a romantic, she blends real-life events with her vivid imagination to create characters and stories that lovers of contemporary romance, new adult, and romantic suspense will return to again and again.

Kelly lives in Colorado at the base of the Rocky Mountains with her husband of twenty-eight years, their two dogs, and a bird that hates her. She has three amazing children, whom she loves to pieces.

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Hope you enjoyed reading my review and the excerpt! Don’t forget to add this on your TBR loves!

Have a great day!!

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