Slay Me

Author: Louise Cypress

Narrators: Reba Buhr, Alexander Cendese

Length: 8 hours 48 minutes

Series: The Puritan Coven Series, Book 3

Publisher: Tantor Audio

Release date: Feb. 19, 2019

Genre: Paranormal Romance; Young Adult

He’s a vampire bad boy. She’s a slayer’s daughter who’s never been kissed.

Kyle Logan has been a 16-year-old bad boy for three years, ever since he became a vampire. After a stint at the rehab center run by the Brothers of Temperance, Kyle has finally kicked his blood addiction. Now, he’s back in high school with one goal in mind: stay clean so he can grow up and become an animal-rights activist.

Cassandra Xander wants two things in 10th grade: a car and the chance to attend a traditional high school. She loved being homeschooled growing up, especially since her family moved every six months for Helsing Incorporated, but now that her mother is founding a slayer training academy in La Jolla, California, Cassandra is excited by the opportunity to attend La Jolla Cove High.

When Kyle witnesses Cassandra give a verbal reckoning to a dog owner who leaves her beagle locked in a sweltering car, Kyle makes his move. He loves that Cassandra is smart, intense, and willing to break rules. But Cassandra has zero experience dating and isn’t sure a relationship with a hot-tempered vampire is a good place to start – especially when she discovers Kyle’s secret ability.

Kyle works hard to master his emotions and make all of Cassandra’s high school dreams come true. Just when their romance brightens both of their lives, Kyle’s past draws him back into darkness. The only way forward for these high school sweethearts is to slay or pay.

Louise Cypress believes in friendship, true love, and the everlasting power of books. She has never met a vampire or a mermaid, but she has been to a Love Sucks concert on Valentine’s Day. She can often be found curled up with a romance novel on Saturday night, diet soda in hand, secretly wishing bustles were back in fashion. Louise is from San Diego, California, where the beach is crowded and summer is immortal.

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Narrator Bio

Reba Buhr grew up in the Pacific Northwest and now lives in Los Angeles, working in theater, film, and television. She has degrees from Occidental College in theater and classical voice. Reba began recording audiobooks in 2012 and has turned her love for performance into a passion for narrating characters that jump off the page. Reba is an accomplished voice actor and has lent her voice to many commercials, video games, and animated projects, including Popples and Knights of Sidonia for Netflix, Toonami’s Hunter x Hunter, and Zagtoon’s Zak Storm.

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Narrator Bio

Alexander Cendese is a New York–based actor/narrator whose credits include roles on and Off-Broadway, in films, and on popular television shows, including Law & Order: SVU and All My Children. He holds a BFA from the Carnegie Mellon School of Drama.

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I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Louise Cypress. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.

I really enjoyed this installment. Cypress keeps you hooked into the story from the very beginning. Once again, the narrators did a phenomenal job bringing this story to life. I really appreciate how Cendese voiced Lex, I could not stop laughing at the “orange faced” vamp whenever he spoke. I wont give away any spoilers or synopsis since one has already been provided.

I was happy to get Cassandra’s POV. I liked how her and Kyle were perfect together and how they made each other grow. It was great to see Cassandra’s character grow, especially after her childishness of Bite Me and Hunt Me. At first, it was a little much, but, the accuracy of a homeschooler attending high school for the first time was astonishing. I had a friend that was homeschooled and sometimes the naivety was overwhelming, but it was because certain experiences were lacked and they could only base concepts from tv shows. Which Cassandra also does in her expectations of what her first day of high school would be like.

I think, of the three books in this series, Slay Me is my favorite. I have really enjoyed listening to this series, and I hope you do to!

Top 10 List

Top Ten Reasons to be an Audiobook Listener
  1. Voice actors make scenes come to life in new ways.
  2. You love hearing accents spoken aloud.
  3. Audiobooks are cheaper than Broadway tickets.
  4. Road-trips are always more fun with a good book to listen to.
  5. Audiobooks make great workout buddies.
  6. Washing the dishes in silence is boring.
  7. That basket of laundry won’t fold itself.
  8. You’ve run out of space on your bookshelf for more hardbacks.
  9. You love bossing Alexa around. “Alexa, read my book to me!”
  10. Up to one in five people have a language-based learning challenge like dyslexia and ear-reading is just as valid as eye-reading.

Guest Post

The Inspiration Behind SLAY ME’s Hilarious Taxidermy-Battle Scene

By Louise Cypress

Did you ever go to summer camp? I’m a lifelong Girl Scout, and when I was in college, I worked at Camp Joe Sherman in Southern California as the nature director. This meant that I was in charge of Camp Sherman’s nature museum and extensive taxidermy collection.

“Eeeww! Gross!” you might be thinking. “Those poor, defenseless creatures!”

Yup. I 100% agree with you.

Girl Scouts aren’t normally known for taxidermy—I’d like to make that clear, but Camp Sherman was an exception. The original property was owned by a guy named Joe Sherman who traveled the world hunting animals, some of which are now endangered. Meanwhile, his wife would collect rocks. All of the animals are stuffed and displayed in the living room of their old house, and the rocks are built into the fireplace.

I understand why the Girl Scouts kept the taxidermy collection on display. They weren’t the ones who killed the animals, and the animals were already dead. But still…. [shudder.]

When you spend an impressionable summer in your 20s as curator to a taxidermy collection, it does weird things to your psyche. That’s why when I wrote SLAY. ME I made Kyle, my vampire bad-boy, a vegan. I’m not vegan myself, but I definitely oppose animal cruelty.

I don’t want to give away any spoilers, but the end of SLAY ME features an epic taxidermy battle that had me laughing so hard that I could hardly write it. All of those summers at Girl Scout camp got processed into fiction. I took the icky and I made it funny.

I’ll just add it to the list of all the ways Girl Scouts has made a difference in life.

Giveaway

Giveaway: $30 Amazon Gift Card

The Puritan Coven Series Giveaway: $30 Amazon Gift Card
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BOOK ONE

Mar. 7th:

Bookworms Corner Blog Spot

The Book Junkie Reads . . .

Mar. 8th:

Book Addict

Mar. 9th:

Lilly’s Book World

Adventures Thru Wonderland

From the TBR Pile

Mar. 10th:

Turning Another Page

Mar. 11th:

The Book Addict’s Reviews

T’s Stuff

Mar. 12th:

Jazzy Book Reviews

Mar. 13th:

Book Bite Reviews

Ebook Addicts

WonderlandiansBooks (Review)

BOOK TWO

Mar. 14th:

Bookworms Corner Blog Spot

The Book Junkie Reads . . .

Mar. 15th:

Book Addict

From the TBR Pile

Mar. 16th:

Turning Another Page

Adventures Thru Wonderland

Mar. 17th:

Little Bees Reads

Mar. 18th:

Jazzy Book Reviews

The Book Addict’s Reviews

Mar. 19th:

Lilly’s Book World

T’s Stuff

Mar. 20th:

Ebook Addicts

WonderlandiansBooks

BOOK THREE

Mar. 21st:

Bookworms Corner Blog Spot

The Book Junkie Reads . . .

Mar. 22nd:

Book Addict

Mar. 23rd:

Turning Another Page

Adventures Thru Wonderland

Mar. 24th:

Little Bees Reads

Mar. 25th:

Jazzy Book Reviews

The Book Addict’s Reviews

From the TBR Pile

Mar. 26th:

Lilly’s Book World

WonderlandiansBooks

Mar. 27th:

Ebook Addicts

T’s Stuff

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Calling

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Calling by C.S. Johnson, Narrated by Nicholas Santasier

Rating: 5 stars

Narrator Rating: 2 stars

 

I was given a copy of Calling in audio format in exchange for my honest review.

Calling is the second installment in the Starlight Chronicles. It continues to follow Dinger as he decides to “quit” being a starlight defender.  Being a defender became too much for him. He struggles with balancing a new girlfriend, school, swimming, his friends, and even his mom trying to sue Starry Night and Wingdinger on behalf of the city. As events unfold, Dinger slowly starts regretting his decision. Some of his cockiness starts to dissipate, even though he is still highly arrogant. I look forward to his continued growth in becoming an actual likable character. Even though I do not currently like him, his character traits are vital to the story so it works out and continues to be enjoyable. I really liked that this story took to the theme of what happens when people become jealous and the monsters they become. I am curious if Dinger has always been so narcissistic or at what point did it happen in his life where he felt so entitled.

I reviewed book one from an ebook format. This is the first book in the series I have reviewed as the audio version. I do not like the narrator. His voices all sound the same so sometimes it is hard to know who is talking. Also, the editing on this audio was not the greatest. There were several parts where the narrator stopped reading and picked up again, like he had lost his place. He also stumbled on a couple of sentences/words. I would listen to the story in parts, because it takes a little while to get used to the narration style. I will continue to review the books in this series for the audio format, but I can’t guarantee I will continue to listen to the narrator in future books. I feel I am being over generous for the narrator’s rating. I hope as he gets more comfortable in the story line, it becomes better. But also, in his defense, the editing is the fault of whomever is in charge for cutting out those bits and pieces where there are pauses or mistakes that are supposed to help the story flow smoothly. That is why I gave the generous 2. I can’t fault someone for making a mistake in the narration, when whomever edits is supposed to cut those parts out.

Even though I enjoyed the books, I think the narrator may be a miss for some people. That is why I give a narrator rating as well. The story was great, fast paced, never dull, and action packed. It is uniquely original in a sea full of the same styles of stories.

I look forward to watching the chemistry between Starry Night and Wingdinger unfold. I have my guesses of who Starry Night is, and am anxiously waiting until her identity is revealed. I have a sneaky suspicion that Dinger is not going to be too thrilled. I wont give away who I think it is, because I think readers and listeners should make their guesses themselves, because it is highly entertaining!! I also hope that there is more development in the Seven Deadly Sinisters and Orpheus. They are very intriguing and I look forward to learning more of their back story (hopefully) throughout the series.

 

 

Fifty Shades of Jezebel and the Beanstalk

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Rating: 4 stars

At first I felt that Jezebel was very whiny, but she grows on you during the book. The narrator has a weird nasally voice that was really hard to get used to.

This book was complete opposite of Fifty Shades of Alice in Wonderland, and I enjoyed it more. I found it entertaining that during Jezebel’s date at the beginning of the book that she assumes all of her date’s negative qualities will transfer to how he is in bed. I might be breaking some hidden girl code by saying this next tidbit, but women really do think like that when on dates. If during a date, you come off as self-absorbed, women will automatically categorize you as a selfish lover that will never be able to meet our needs. Then you will have no chance in hell.

Women enjoy sex too. Maybe they don’t all know it yet, or wont admit it, but when we look at our date, we wonder what kind of lover they will make. So be mindful of how you come across, we pay attention.

One thing I enjoy about this author is that she likes to insert a lot of pop culture into her books, as if the characters take time from the story and speak to the reader directly. One of the references made in the book was to Christian Grey and how overpriced the 50 Shades series was. They then went on to state that there were plenty of “panty dripping erotica” for less than $3.00 on the Kindle…which is the truth, this story included.

 During her date at the beginning of the story, after a few minutes, every couple began pleasuring each other in some way. When the waiter would chat with her about how often he saw her here on boring dates, he questioned her if she was happy. In their conversation, I liked how the author referenced a previous book by having Jezebel explain that she liked the erotic version of Alice in Wonderland (Fifty Shades of Alice in Wonderland).

This book has a lot of slapstick humor and puns. They come very cheesy and casual. For example:

She very much wanted to go to a party. Especially Since this was supposed to be erotica and she hadn’t gotten laid yet..

It is almost like the characters know they are a part of the story. I think Jezebel is someone you can easily connect to. I think her promise to herself that she wouldn’t have sex with someone unless there was mutual affection and feelings is admirable. I think it is safe to say, majority of us have made similar promises to ourselves at some point in life.

During Jezebel’s journey she learned different things. She learned that mutual appreciation is more than affection and feelings. Jezebel liked one of the first characters she met, Robin, but he stated he wasn’t boyfriend material, and yet she still slept with him and became upset when he did not change his mind. During Pan’s party, Jezebel realized she was selfish. She was always thinking about what men could do for her, and never thought about what she could do for them.

Jezebel had a lot of growth in this story. Aside from being a humorous erotica novella, there was a story and message hidden underneath. Jezebel becomes selfless on a quest to rid a character she had grown fond of from a curse that was placed on him many years ago. Because this novel is erotica, the quests and trials she faced were sexual in nature, but you can tell Jezebel is changing in her personal, non sexy life, to become a better woman and potential partner.

Within 70 pages of smut, you discover all this. Jezebel also discovers that happiness and arousal comes from within. Moral of the story? Only when they needed each other, would a relationship truly work.

The sex scenes were interesting. I liked that Jezebel wasn’t as naive as Alice in Fifty Shades of Alice in Wonderland. I didn’t feel like I was listening just to finish the book. Jezebel wasn’t as annoying. So that is a big plus.

If you are looking for a well thought out book with a huge story line and a lot of hidden story lines, I would pass this book over. But if you are looking for a quick read that is entertaining and different, then pick this one up at some point.