Archive for the ‘apocalypse’ Category

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Welcome to Freakin Fridays, where I share my reviews of books that scare you, thrill you, and get those endorphins pumping.

I’ve got a few good ones to share today.

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After The Ending

The Ending #1

by Lindsey Fairleigh and Lindsey Pogue

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Genre: Post Apocalyptic

My Review

I enjoyed the dual points of view from best friend’s Dani and Zoe. They are far apart when the flu virus starts, killing off most of humanity. They struggle to stay in touch, traveling in two different groups, hoping to meet up later.

It was fun to follow Dani and Zoe as they try to survive and reconnect. And the groups they travel with add much to the turmoil and danger. They all need each other to survive but that doesn’t mean they don’t have their own agendas. This is my favorite part of this genre. The group dynamics. Who shines. Who falls short. And who goes homicidal. I like to pick one person I loathe and wait to see what happens to them. Sure adds to the suspense.

And while I expected to be left hanging in the end, with this being an ongoing series, I felt like it just stopped. Like it went to commercial and didn’t come back, right in the middle of the action. A good beginning and I’ll probably continue with the series as it’ll haunt me until I know what happens to who.

 3  Stars

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Synopsis

THE FIRST BOOK IN THE EMOTIONALLY CHARGED POST-APOCALYPTIC ROMANCE SERIES, The Ending.

The Virus spread. Billions died. The Ending began. We may have survived the apocalypse, but the Virus changed us.

When people started getting sick, “they” thought it was just the flu. My roommate, my boyfriend, my family…they’re all gone now. I got sick too. I should have died with them—with the rest of the world—but I didn’t. I thought witnessing the human population almost disappear off the face of the earth was the craziest thing I’d ever experience. I was so wrong. My name is Dani O’Connor, and I survived The Ending.

The Virus changed everything. The world I knew is gone, and life is backwards. We’ve all had to start over. I’ve been stripped of my home, my dreams…all that is me. I’m someone else now—broken and changed. Other survivors’ memories and emotions haunt me. They invade my mind until I can no longer separate them from my own. I won’t let them consume me. I can’t. My name is Zoe Cartwright, and I survived The Ending.

We’ve been inseparable for most of our lives, and now our friendship is all we have left. The aftermath of the Virus has stranded us on opposite sides of the United States. Trusting strangers, making sacrifices, killing—we’ll do anything to reach one another. Fear and pain may be unavoidable, but we’re strong…we’re survivors. But to continue surviving in this unfamiliar world plagued by Crazies and strange new abilities, we have to adapt. We have to evolve.

And more than anything, we have to find each other.

THIS BOOK CONTAINS ADULT CONTENT AND LANGUAGE.

Amazon

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Paranormal Painless

by Shannon Reiger

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Genre: YA Paranormal Thriller

My Review

You know those stories that creep up on you? Where the author takes their time, slipping in subtle clues that you don’t always catch right away, and the atmosphere becomes darker and darker? I do, and I very much enjoy the slow build up as the author introduces the characters, fleshes them out so you connect with them, and then starts adding in some odd occurrences that keep you on edge. Like in a movie where the music builds and you know any second now something horrific is going to happen, you brace yourself for that moment. But it doesn’t come. Then it builds again, gets a little creepier, but doesn’t happen. You start to think it never will, and then you’re caught off guard and jump when the author yells boo. This is one of those stories. It’s edgy, suspenseful and so very creepy.

Christian Moore is a mild mannered English teacher and a self proclaimed loner. He’s got his routine and he’s content.  As such, he’s ill equipped when a strange package is left in his driveway. He opens it to find an enormous black cat with huge paws.  He brings it in out of the rain and the cat is so traumatized it won’t leave his side.  It’s odd behavior rubs off on him and he starts jumping at little noises and things moving in the corner of his vision. Soon he wonders what the cat dragged home as he becomes haunted in his own home.

So much to like in this one. Especially how Christian uses the students in his writing class. The students really like Christian and find it fun when he gives them a new assignment about ghosts and hauntings, hoping they don’t catch on that it’s really happening to him.

The cat, Pacman, is such an important part of the story. He’s one of my favorites. When reading this book, see if you pick up on something special about him.

As Christian is pushed into solving a serial killer cold case, his life changes quickly. The hauntings become the least of his worries when an act of kindness puts him in the local newspaper. Now he’s a target and those around him will suffer for it.

Such a great story. At times I smiled and laughed. Other times I felt so sad. And when things took the dark turn, I cringed, worried about these characters, and for good reason.

A slow burner but never boring, Paranormal Painless will haunt you.

5  Stars

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Synopsis

Bewildered by an unexpected, peculiar package and disturbed by its accompanying antagonistic spirits, English teacher Christian Moore is shaken from his carefully crafted, cocooned existence and catapulted into the shocking reality of an unpredictable, haunted and sometimes evil world. With his own safety and sanity at stake, he must learn to embrace the paranormal when he is confronted by the serial killer of innocent children. To survive, Christian forms unlikely alliances with once feared intruders from the supernatural realm, as well as, a mysterious man with unique insight and abilities.

Just when he thinks he has solved the mystery of his chilling visions, he is propelled into a tomb of water where he is forced to unravel the heartbreaking history buried for years within the confines of those same walls.

While helping the unfortunate, trapped souls, he is compelled to examine his own traumatic past and to risk everything he knows for a life truly worth living.

Amazon

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Ash

Wheels and Zombies #1

by M. Van

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Genre: Horror

My Review

This could be a refreshing twist for zombie fans. Our main heroine is a thirteen-year-old girl in a wheelchair. Ash is in the hospital fighting a losing battle with cancer when the world goes mad. A virus is killing people, but they rise again, rabid for human flesh. As the virus spreads through the hospital, Ash doesn’t have to worry about cancer killing her anymore. The zombies are the big worry now.

Ash is a resilient young girl, brave in the face of death, and refusing to be looked at as a weak victim. She has plenty of ideas on how to get out, to survive. And shes’ adept at reading people, which comes in handy when she discovers why the military want all of the patients on the cancer ward.

There’s lots of action, relentless zombies, and some intrigue for conspiracy fans. Not everyone is brave or good. And I was caught by surprise by a few of the characters. A clever way for the author to offer up more fodder for the zombies

I knew going in this was a novella for a continuing series, but I wasn’t too thrilled when I looked at my kindle and noticed I was 99% through the book and there was no end in sight. It ended on a zinger of a cliffhanger, but, since I enjoyed the characters, I’m encouraged to keep going.

  4 Stars

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Synopsis

Facing the zombie apocalypse in a wheelchair might prove a challenge to others. For thirteen-year-old Ash it’s just another fight for her life.

When feeling deserted and alone with the knowledge that your days are pretty much numbered, you might decide not to be pushed around anymore. But stuck in a wheelchair with the risen dead on your tail—this might prove a challenge.

Ash’s stay at a hospital that for all intents might be her last, turns into a different nightmare when a killer virus overcomes the staff and her fellow patients.

With the walking dead roaming the hospital halls, Ash has to depend on the help of an old man, and a soldier who could turn out to be the enemy to survive. She not only has to use her head, avoiding zombies, but also to stay out of the hands of a shady government agency that wants to dissect her.

Amazon

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For a list of my reviews go HERE.

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Praise Quotes

“I enjoyed my time in Firesmith’s world. I did not want to leave. I really got a kick out of it, and would happily come back for more. Recommended.”

MJ Kobernus, author of The Guardian: Blood in the Sand

“This book rocks.”

Barton Paul Levenson, author of Dark Gods of Alter Telluria

“a quick, enjoyable read. Full of action and fraught with danger”

Dave Robertson, author of Strange Hunting, Strange Hunting II, and The Brave and The Dead

“The book is an easy and quick read and an action-filled one that you’ll imagine as a TV series or a movie with no difficulty.”

Olga Núñez Miret, author of Escaping Psychiatry

Hell Holes

What Lurks Below #1

by Donald Firesmith

Genre: Science Fiction / Apocalyptic

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My Review

I love unexplained acts of nature. Makes for such a chilling plot. When holes start appearing in the Arctic Circle , a team of experts is sent to investigate. Once they arrive, things get worse as more holes appear. And then something straight out of Hell crawls out. A horde of otherworldly creatures that have only one thing in mind. Killing mankind. With nowhere to run, the team seeks shelter in an old station. But the horde won’t be denied, and like an octopus with a sealed bottle full of yummy bait, they will find a way in.

I was almost rubbing my hands together in twisted anticipation before I started this one. Mysterious holes appearing. Something beyond imagining crawls out. The fate of mankind hangs in the balance. Oh yeah. I knew I had to read this book.

There’s a mixed bag of character’s. Ones you come to like and respect and some not so much. The author doesn’t seem to mind killing off either one. Keeps you on edge when things get down and dirty. Which doesn’t take long at all.

The story is strong and there’s a sub plot that makes things even more interesting. Also, the blend of science fiction and horror leaves the story wide open for the author to go in many different directions.

The ending. Well, it’s an end, but also a cliff hanger. That’s because this is really the beginning of something much bigger. I’ll be grabbing the next one immediately. Got a good feeling about this series.

   4  Stars

 

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Synopsis

It’s August in Alaska, and geology professor Jack Oswald prepares for the new school year. But when hundreds of huge holes mysteriously appear overnight in the frozen tundra north of the Arctic Circle, Jack receives an unexpected phone call. An oil company exec hires Jack to investigate, and he pocks his climatologist wife and two of their graduate students as his team.

Uncharacteristically, Jack lets Aileen O’Shannon, a bewitchingly beautiful young photojournalist, talk him into coming along as their photographer. When they arrive in the remote oil town of Deadhorse, the exec and a biologist to protect them from wild animals join the team. Their task: to assess the risk of more holes opening under the Trans-Alaska Pipeline and the wells and pipelines that feed it. But they discover a far worse danger lurks below. When it emerges, it threatens to shatter Jack’s unshakable faith in science. And destroy us all….

 

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Enjoy the Excerpt

After seconds that seemed to stretch into eternity, the cigarette butt tumbled past Mark and eventually reached the depth where the concentration of methane and hydrogen sulfide reached explosive levels.

There was a deafening whoosh, and a huge fireball the size of the hole erupted from the pit. Luckily, the blast from the explosion blew us backwards, away from the hole. That was the only thing that saved us from the intense heat radiating from the colossal swirling ball of fire and smoke that had roared from the crater. It felt like I was standing next to a hundred heat lamps, and I heard the sizzling sound of my hair and beard beginning to burn on the side of my head that faced the flames. Turning my back to the hole, I immediately used my hands to extinguish my burning hair before it could seriously burn me. Disgusted by the stench of a mixture of burnt hair and rotten eggs, I picked myself up and looked back towards the hole. Above us, a huge pillar of smoke rose like the ash cloud of an erupting volcano. Looking back down, we saw the burning nylon rope continue to rise until its end slipped over the edge of the hole. Only a little of Mark’s smoldering body harness was still attached to its end.

“No!” We heard Jill’s horror-filled scream coming loudly over our walkie-talkies, followed less than a second later when her anguished cry reached us from across the pit. I could just make out Jill’s wavering form through the turbulent superheated air rising up between us as she raced back around the hole.

I looked over to where Kowalski was standing, staring in disbelief at the fiery pit his thoughtlessness had created. I was beyond furious. The next thing I knew, I had him by the jacket and was screaming in his face, “You Goddamned careless son of a bitch! Weren’t you listening? Didn’t you hear me say there was hydrogen sulfide in the pit?”

“Buh, buh, but…” he stammered as he tried to back away from me.

Without realizing it, I was slowly backing him up to the hole. I might have backed him over the edge had Bill not forced himself between us. “That’s enough!” he commanded.

Suddenly, I realized what I was doing and let go. It was clear from his expression that he’d had no idea that the gasses in the bottom of the hole were flammable, let alone sufficiently concentrated to be explosive.

My fiery rage died as I turned my anger inward. Kowalski hadn’t killed Mark. I had. I was in charge and responsible for the lives of my team. I should have spotted the danger sooner. Mark was my student, so I should have sent him up first. Worst of all, I had seen Kowalski smoking next to the hole and done nothing. I turned my back on the hole and wearily walked away across the empty tundra.

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Author Donald Firesmith

Hellholes author

A computer geek by day, at night and on weekends Donald Firesmith writes modern paranormal fantasy, apocalyptic science fiction, action and adventure novels and relaxes by handcrafting magic wands from magical woods and mystical gemstones.

A computer geek by day, Donald Firesmith works as a system and software engineer helping the US Government acquire large, complex software-intensive systems. In this guise, he has authored seven technical books, written numerous software- and system-related articles and papers, and spoken at more conferences than he can possibly remember. He is also proud to have been named a Distinguished Engineer by the Association of Computing Machinery, although his pride is tempered somewhat worrying whether the term “distinguished” makes him sound more like a graybeard academic rather than an active engineer whose beard is still more red than gray.

By night and on weekends, his alter ego writes modern paranormal fantasy, apocalyptic science fiction, action and adventure novels and relaxes by handcrafting magic wands from various magical woods and mystical gemstones. His first foray into fiction is the book Magical Wands: A Cornucopia of Wand Lore written under the pen name Wolfrick Ignatius Feuerschmied. He lives in Crafton, Pennsylvania with his wife Becky, his son Dane, and varying numbers of dogs, cats, and birds.

Links: Website / Facebook / Twitter / Goodreads

Buy Links: The book is free

Click on the links below to get your copy!

Amazon / iTunes / B&N / Createspace / instafreebie / Smashwords

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a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Welcome to Teaser Tuesday hosted by Ambrosia  @ The Purple Booker.

Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
• Grab your current read.
• Open to a random page.
•Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

 

My Teaser for this week is from

 The Dog

by Amy Cross

The Dog by [Cross, Amy] 

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Genre: Horror / Apocalypse

My Teaser from 17% in the eBook.

I don’t sleep during the night. Neither does Jon. He sits at the table, near the gun, while I stay out on the porch, watching the dark forest.

The whole world is so silent, it’s as if Jon and I are the only living things left.

I thought this would be an interesting change of pace for a zombie book. It’s told from Harry’s point of view. He’s Jon’s Jack Russell Terrier.

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Synopsis

There will be many who witness the end of human civilization.

But few who live beyond the first day.

When Jon takes his dog Harry to a remote cabin for the week, he just wants to get away from the rest of the world. And then one morning, after finding that his phone is dead, Jon looks at the city in the distance and realizes that something seems very wrong.

All the power has gone out. At night, the city is completely dark. There are no planes in the sky, and when Jon drives to the nearest gas station, he finds a desolate and bloody scene. He refuses to believe that something truly awful has happened, however, until he spots a figure stumbling through the forest, heading ever closer.

Soon Jon is facing a desperate fight for survival. While he and his dog have been up at the cabin, the whole world has been struck by a huge, global catastrophe that has left billions dead. Can Jon and his dog survive, or are they doomed to suffer the same fate?

The Dog is a novel about the end of the world, told through the eyes of a dog who finds himself stuck at a remote cabin with only his owner for company.

Amazon

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The first cover is the edition I have from Amazon. This is the alternate cover from Goodreads.

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Which do you like better?

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How about you? Got a tease? Tell me!

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For a list of my reviews go HERE.

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Welcome to my Saturday Screams.

For all of you fans of horror and the apocalypse, I have two very different ones for you today. Enjoy!

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Animal Kingdom

by Iain Rob Wright

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Genre: Horror / Apocalypse

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My Review

I’ve read several of Iain’s books and have more on my Kindle waiting for me. This is one of my favorites.

It was supposed to be a special day. Since the divorce, Danny really missed his dad and had ants in his pants when he found out Joe was taking him to the zoo. Joe was just glad to have his son with him. It didn’t matter what they did but he knew Danny would love the animals.

Everything is great until the reptile show starts. The handler has a giant boa constrictor wrapped around his body. While he tells the gathering crowd about the snake it suddenly begins to wrap its thick coils around his neck, constricting and crushing the man. Joe does his best to help him, but the snake is too strong and time runs out for the handler.

The crowd panics and runs in all directions, horrified by the grotesque killing. As Joe grabs Danny and rushes to get help, he notices people are screaming and running from all directions. They couldn’t all have been at the exhibit. Then all of the animals start making a racket. Something bad is happening elsewhere in the zoo.

Deciding to get inside, away from whatever is occurring, Joe ducks into the new visitor’s center. Most people were running for the exits, but Joe had to get Danny to safety quickly. There were several people inside, along with the zoo’s curator. The curators protestations that an animal attack couldn’t be happening are cut short. When Joe turns to see what he’s looking at, he can’t believe what he’s seeing. There in the doorway are four massive lions, snarling and revealing their thick fangs, dripping with blood.

This is where the story really cranks up. The animals, for some unknown reason, have gained intelligence and have turned on mankind. From the lowly spiders to the gigantic elephants, they all want everyone dead.

The diverse group of people trapped in the visitor’s center are safe for the moment, or so they think. The animals won’t be denied, and find ways to get in. How the individual characters react to this is very interesting. As you’d expect, there are the one or two bad apples that think their way is the only way, you have an older woman spouting prophecy, a young girl without her medication, Joe, whose main concern is his son Danny, the curator, not much help there, and an older man with some fight in him. It’s up to them to work together. Otherwise, no one will get out of this alive.

Except that the story takes place in a zoo with animals from all over the world, it reminded of a book I read years ago. I also watched the movie and really enjoyed both. It was Day of the Animals.

The author gave me the same sense of dread and gut-wrenching fear with Animal Kingdom. You just knew people were going to die and die horribly. The animals are too many to fight off.

Reading scenes about the group dynamics was very real. People react differently when their lives are at stake. Some step up, some cower, and some act like blustering buffoons. I can’t figure out why some people can’t see past their own arrogance, or should I say ignorance.

This is a book about a war we may not be able to win. About surviving minute by minute and always looking for the way out.

At the end of the book there are some short Bonus stories. They all tie into the Animal Kingdom book and the one by Eric. S. Brown, Night of the Squirrels, is very interesting!

5 Stars

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Synopsis

WELCOME TO THE BOTTOM OF THE FOOD CHAIN!

Aside from being freakishly tall, Joe is just an ordinary divorcee taking his son, Danny, to the zoo for his weekend of custody. Everything is going great until a bizarre snake attack sends everybody in the zoo running for cover. It isn’t long before Joe realizes that there is a lot more going on than a simple snake attack. And if the hungry lions, roaring gorillas and charging elephants now free from their cages have anything to say about it, there is more bloodshed to come. All of the world’s animals are attacking, and no one knows why. What they do know is that man is now on the bottom of the food chain.

FEATURES BONUS MATERIAL THAT TAKES PLACE IN THE ANIMAL KINGDOM UNIVERSE:

7 Short stories by Iain Rob Wright and Eric S. Brown

Amazon

The cover I used is from the eBook edition that I own. This is the cover for the paperback.

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Which do you like the most?

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The Boat:  Zombie Survivors

by Chris Dougherty

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Genre: Horror / Apocalypse

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My Review

They have the boats. They have a plan. Watch out for the monkey wrench.

I love a good zombie story. After having read Christine’s vampire series, The Blood Run Trilogy, I knew she’d give me her own uniquely twisted view of the apocalypse.

It’s two weeks after everything went to hell. The miracle cure for AIDS turned out to be a world ender. The dead have risen. People turn to bodies of water and ships as the last safe place.

Here’s where Christine makes it fun. The people go in the water. The zombies go in the water. The zombies sink. Thus, their tag, sinkers. Imagine all of those zombies walking along the ocean floor. Imagine going fishing…..

The author’s choice to take the survivors and group them all into one place isn’t new. But she sure gives you some realistic scenarios. Any time you crowd desperate people together, you’re sure to have conflict. It makes some of the scenes so genuine. Scary stuff.

As with most good things, they must come to an end. Enter someone who thinks they know better than anyone else. Stir in the mysterious stranger, found stranded in a small boat. What do you get? A really bad scenario. Now, no one is safe and the zombies are just one of many things that will get you killed.

This was so many levels of horrific and fun. All of you zombie fans are in for a treat.

4 Stars

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Synopsis

At the end of the world, the undead aren’t the greatest threat to those who have survived.

A deadly plague brought on by an experimental AIDS drug called Lazarus sweeps the country. Lazarus, named so because it brings patients back from the brink of death, has the unfortunate side effect of bringing the dead back to life. A handful of survivors have made their way to water where the walking dead–called ‘sinkers’–are less of a threat. These battered and traumatized survivors have colonized a super yacht (Flyboy), a tugboat (Big Daddy), and a weekender yacht (Barbra’s Bay Breeze). As they wait for more survivors and organize a voyage south to a warm climate, they unintentionally bring aboard a monster who might be the end to them all.

Amazon

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The cover I used is the newest. Here are some others.

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Which one do you like the most?

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You can find a list of my reviews HERE.

For a list of free eBooks go HERE

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Welcome to The Friday 56 hosted by Freda’s Voice.

 

This is a really fun meme!

The only rules are to grab a book (any book), turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader and find a sentence or a few (no spoilers) that grabs you and post it.

Then go over to Freda’s Voice and leave your link so we can visit your 56!

My 56 for this week is from:

 The Nature Of Balance

by  Tim Lebbon

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Genre: Horror / Apocalyptic

From Page 56 in the paperback.

The field flows by like a golden sea in a gentle breeze. The horse’s hooves swish through the crop, throwing hazy clouds of dried stalks and stems into the air behind it, leaving a smoking trail across the field.

I love this description. When I’m galloping on horseback across a rolling field, it feels like we’ll take flight at any moment. Glorious!

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Read on if you want to know more.

Synopsis

One morning, the world does not wake up. People lie dead in their beds, killed by their own nightmares. They’re lucky. For the few remaining survivors, the new world is a confusing, terrifying place. Things are different now. The balance of nature has shifted. Mankind is no longer the dominant species — it is an intruder, something to be removed, destroyed by an Earth bent on vengeance.Blane is a man on his own in this world gone mad. He has no distant memories, only the vague certainty that something momentous has happened in his past. Fay is enigmatic, dangerous, a dark witch and a player of gruesome games. What roles will they play in nature’s new era? And will they be able to survive long enough to find out? Will anyone survive?

AMAZON

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Leave your link and I’ll drop by your 56.

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You can find a list of my reviews HERE.

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 Title: Rain Must Fall

By: Deb Rotuno

Publication Date: October 28, 2016

Publisher: RR Books

Cover Designer: Coreen Montegna

Genre: Zombie/Post Apocolyptic

Jack Chambers was all the way across the country—separated from his family—when life as he knew it came to a screeching halt. A virus straight out of a horror movie has been unleashed, turning friends, neighbors, and family members into a walking nightmare. Jack must fight to make his way back home to his wife and son from Florida all the way to Oregon in a world that is determined to kill them all.

Sara Chambers considered herself to be a strong-minded military wife and mother. When her husband is called away for temporary duty, she never thought that her quiet, small-town life would be turned upside down. Following her husband’s frantic instructions, Sara must protect their son, Freddie, and the last remaining members of the small town of Sandy, Oregon, and get them somewhere safe, get them to the one place Jack told her to take them—their cabin at Clear Lake.

The world is no longer safe. It’s kill or be killed. With the odds stacked against them, Jack and Sara fight to not only survive but to hold on to hope that their family can be reunited even against such incredible odds.

Deb has been married to her husband for going on 14 years. They’ve always had rescued pets, and at the moment, they have 4 cats.

She was born and raised in central Florida. She loves the warm temperatures. She’s worked in retail for almost 17 years, but if she were able to do anything she wanted, she would be a full-time reader, writer, and fur-baby mom.

She has always been a big reader, and writing was something she started late in high school, but she began to dabble in it again once she discovered fanfic in 2009. Since then, she’s read and written plenty in her spare time, especially since she cannot watch a TV show or a movie without thinking about how she could write a story like it.

Social Media Links

Facebook ~ Goodreads ~ Twitter ~ Website

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Thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew and Good Luck!

For a list of my reviews go HERE.

For a list of free eBooks updated daily go HERE

To see all of my giveaways click on the lucky horseshoe below!

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