Posted in YA Book Reviews

Hunt Me

Author: Louise Cypress

Narrators: Reba Buhr, Alexander Cendese

Length: 5 hours 24 minutes

Series: The Puritan Coven Series, Book 2

Publisher: Tantor Audio

Release date: Jan. 29, 2019

Genre: Paranormal Romance; Young Adult

An all-girls vampire camping trip turns deadly when a Sasquatch hunter is accidentally killed.

All Esma Siban wants this summer is to stay out of her stepmother’s way. When her stepsister, Morgan, suggests a road trip to Oregon to visit a friend from high school, Esma jumps on the idea. A camping trip sounds like the perfect way to help Esma recover from breaking up with her boyfriend. But when Esma and Morgan encounter a stalker, Esma’s fangs come out.

The death of a Sasquatch hunter wasn’t on their itinerary. A terrified Esma is unsure what to do next, so she texts her ex-boyfriend for help.

Chase Wheeler feels like the biggest fool on the football team. The entire time he was dating Esma, he had no idea she was a vampire. In high school, Chase did exactly what Esma told him to. He let Esma plan their dates, pick his wardrobe, and even pack his lunches. Now, Chase has a month left before he starts college to forget the girl who froze his heart.

When Chase lands an internship on the popular radio talk show Fred Head, he finds his voice and charts a future that doesn’t involve domineering girlfriends. But all it takes is one text from Esma and Chase runs back to her waiting arms. Chase finds the courage to tell Esma that he’s through with being bossed around right when Esma realizes she desperately needs Chase’s input.

The only way home from this camping trip is to be bitten or smitten.

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.


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.


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.



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.

As you may remember, I enjoyed reading Bite Me, so of course when I saw an opportunity to join in and listen to Hunt Me, I took it! This book was an easy listen, at just over 5 hours. I listened to it in one day.

I really liked the Esma/Chase side of the story. The flow is very steady and the excitement slowly increases so by the end, I was so ready to know what happened! Had I been reading the book instead of listening, I would have sped read or flipped to the end to know what happened immediately. Because I like to spoil things for myself! I loved Barney, and I hope he makes an appearance in Slay Me. I liked that Gwen made an appearance and we could find out how she is doing.

The narrators, as usual, were amazing. I really like what they bring to the story. They really suck the listener in. Cypress really sucks the reader/listener in from the very beginning. I am going to be sad when I finish the series and have nothing else to listen to.

Q&A with Louse Cypress, author of HUNT ME
  • Question One: HUNT ME is about an all-girls vampire camping trip that goes wrong when a Sasquatch hunter is accidentally killed. What made you want to write about a camping trip?
    • Louise: I was a Girl Scout growing up and some of my best memories are of being outdoors. Now that I’m grown up, I’m a Girl Scout leader. I still love camping, especially in my pop-up camper. When I first started writing HUNT ME it was winter, and a camping trip in Southern California—even a fictional one—sounded like a lot of fun.
  • Question Two: HUNT ME is a second-chance romance. What’s different about writing a second-chance romance versus a normal girl-meets-boy plotline?
    • Louise: In a second-chance romance you’re dealing with two characters who used to be in love but who have messed things up. In Esma and Chase’s case, Esma kept the fact that she was a vampire from Chase for two whole years. Chase can’t handle dating a liar, and he’s not so sure about dating a vampire either. The fun thing about writing a second-chance romance is that letting the characters come to terms with their past mistakes, and also recognize their deep love for one another.
  • Question Three: One of the funniest characters in HUNT ME is Barney the Sasquatch. How did you create the character of Barney?
    • Louise: I wanted Barney to be sentient, but not human, so I thought about him as if he were a really smart Labradoodle. Barney’s big, furry, and smelly, but he’s also adorable. When the girls are in danger, Barney will do whatever it takes to protect them.
  • Question Four: Are there more books in The Puritan Coven?
    • Louise: HUNT ME is the sequel to BITE ME, which is about a nerdy high school senior who transforms into a vampire vixen with a bloodlust for prom. SLAY ME follows HUNT ME and is about a bad-boy vampire who falls in love with a slayer’s daughter. All three books are stand-alone novels with no cliffhangers, but they incorporate the same cast of characters. Tantor Media is producing the audiobooks for the entire series.
  • Question Five: Is Louise Cypress your real name?
    • Louise: My real name is Jennifer Bardsley and a lot of people know me online as The YA Gal. I own of the largest Facebook pages devoted to young adult books that’s not associated with a publisher. Every Tuesday on The YA Gal readers have an instant book club called #TakeALookTuesday where they share pictures abou what they are reading and chat about books.

Guest Post

Would Vampires Camp or Glamp?

By Louise Cypress

I am obsessed with tent trailers. There, I said it. Unlike the rest of my family, I hate sleeping on the ground, even in a super expensive tent from REI. That’s why when I wrote HUNT ME, the second book in The Puritan Coven series, I gave Morgan, Esma, and Cassandra a tricked-out tent trailer.
HUNT ME is about an all-girls vampire camping trip that goes hilariously wrong when a Sasquatch hunter is accidentally killed.

The cool think about pop up trailers is they are like magical houses that only appear at certain times. Most of their lives are spent collapsed into an 8 x 8 foot box at the side of your house. But then, when the weather is just right, you hitch the trailer to your truck or SUV and head off for adventure.

It took me years to convince my husband that we should buy a tent trailer. Now that we own one, we have camped all over Washington State, Idaho, British Columbia, and Alberta. Unfortunately, we haven’t seen any vampires or Sasquatches…yet.


Giveaway: $30 Amazon Gift Card

The Puritan Coven Series Giveaway: $30 Amazon Gift Card


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Posted in YA Book Reviews

Bite Me

Bite Me by Louise Cypress. Narrated by Reba Buhr and Alexander Cendese

Rating: 5 Stars


I received a copy of this audiobook from the author in exchange for my honest review.

Bite Me is about a high school senior named Morgan. Her mother is dating a classmate’s father and one night while she was at their home for a family dinner together, she was bitten by a young child who was being tended to by a nun. Turns out, this young child was a vampire and passed on vampiritis to Morgan. The classmate, whose name is Esma, and her father, Lucas, are called Puritans, meaning they do not feast on human blood and therefore age like a normal human and do not have the same kind of powers as vampires.

Van Xander is a descendant of Van Helsing. His family works for a council that slays vampires. His family was sent to the community where Morgan lived, but to monitor the local puritan coven when he discovers that Morgan is a vampire and she does not know it. As time goes on, he really begins to care for Morgan.

I really enjoyed listening to this book. I had been eyeballing reading it for a while, but with last year being so hectic for me, I just never picked it up to do so. When the opportunity to listen to it came about, I was very excited and jumped on it very quickly. I listened to this book in one day. That is right. I finished all 8 hours of it. I listened all day in every activity….working on the computer, doing chores around the house, feeding my son…I could not stop. The narrators really brought this story to life. I always feel narrators can make or break a story, and these narrators were fantastic.

I like the interesting twist to vampire lore that is out there. Cypress introduces that vampirism is like an illness and if you get treatment, you can live a normal life. In this case, if the infected person feasted on human blood, the disease took over and the person stopped aging and began having other vampiric superpowers. If a person did not feast on human blood, and stuck to a more paleo diet, then they lived a pretty normal, healthy, and happy life (they are known as Puritans). Having said that, they would still have the urge to feast on human blood. Morgan had a jump start to this though. Her stop mom, who is also one of these Puritan vampires, learned that something may happen to Morgan one day and began putting drops of medicine sort of like methadone, only it tones down the vampiric desires to feast on humans.

Overall, the story line was enjoyable. I am looking forward to the next book and am patiently waiting for its release on Audible. I have high hopes for the continuation of the series. If you want to listen to something with a fresh take on the same old vampire/human love story, this is a good one to go with!

I would like to thank the author for allowing me to review this audiobook for her! It was my pleasure and I greatly enjoyed listening!

Posted in YA Book Reviews



Slumbering by C.S. Johnson

Rating 5 stars

I received a copy of Slumbering in exchange for an honest review.

Slumbering is an uniquely, original, YA epic fantasy about a teenage boy that learns he was once a warrior for a Star Prince and at some point was sent to earth where he became human until his powers unlocked. As such, this story is about his “acceptance ” of responsibility for his role to fight off evil demons and protect his friends and community (the latter more so out of obligation than desire).

Even though I have given the book 5 stars, I absolutely cannot stand Hamilton Dinger. He makes the story hard to get into because he is so narcissistic it makes the story as a whole almost unbearable. Dinger thinks he is God’s gift to humanity (even though he would not agree that he was God’s gift…just a gift to everyone through nature ). So why the 5 stars? Because I couldn’t put it down and I found myself secretly hoping he gets it together and stops being such an asshat.

The book is a fairly quick read and flows well. It is also a completely original epic fantasy YA, which is hard to come by these days. It offers a unique story that is intriguing and will spark curiosity for the rest of the series and intrigue as to how this war will ultimately go down.

As much as I can’t stand Dinger, I am hoping he has a lot of character development that makes him a more likable super hero. It is entirely unfortunate that a jerk like him gets something so awesome and he continues to be arrogant. We all know what happens to arrogant superheroes.

The bulk of this story is to set up the characters in the story line, introduce some of the demons and what their end game is, as well as, portray Dinger as a jerk. Honestly, I don’t feel sorry for anything that happens to Dinger.

If you are curious about this book and would be interested in reading it for yourself (which I recommend) you can check it out: Amazon

Keep posted as I am currently listening to the next installment of the story!

Posted in YA Book Reviews

Mirrored by Alex Flinn



Mirrored by Alex Flinn

Goodreads Rating: 5 stars

Actual Rating: 4.5 stars

Mirrored marks my final Retelling in the Retellings challenge I participated in this year. It has been fun. And I met the challenge goal of 12 retellings since January 1, 2016!!

Mirrored is the retelling of Snow White and her evil, wicked Step Mother. This book as the fairest of them all (Celiene), the wicked stepmother who is uber jealous (Violet), Kendra (from the book Beastly), various dwarves (including Jorge–pronounced George, Stacey, and Goose), the prince (British rock star named Jonah Prince), and a mango (instead of an apple…because they live in Florida).

I gave it only 4.5 stars because I felt like there was so much build up, creating the story and back drop, that by the time the “Big Kiss” happens, it was not as spectacular as it could have been. The whole situation felt awkward and forced. I also feel that the last few chapters were just kind of “bleh.” I was hoping for just as much excitement in the end as the story had at the beginning.

Either way, this story was wonderful. It is the 3rd book in the series. I didn’t read the second book, but it appears they can be read out of order. There was one comment regarding Beastly that threw me off. Kendra mentions the boy she turned into a beast during a conversation with a young Violet in the 1980s….but Beastly was more recent…they had technology such as Instant Messenger and cell phones, that it would be impossible in a LOT of ways that Beastly occurred before 1985. I am still trying to wrap my hand around it.

Posted in Uncategorized, YA Book Reviews

Three Dark Crowns


Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake

Goodreads Rating 4 stars

Actual Rating: 3.5 stars


Three Dark Crowns was the book included in September’s OwlCrate box.

This book started very slow. I almost gave up on it a couple of times, eventually I read the last 3 chapters and it helped me continue going. The book does pick up, but to far close to the end of the story.

Three Dark Crowns is the story of triplet princesses who at a certain age are split from each other and brought to an area of Fennbrin to study a special talent, with these three princesses those talents are elemental, naturalist, and poison. Every generation produces triplet princesses to be trained and bred for the Beltane. At this Beltane, each princess has to show off her talent to the people. The next day, the three have to set forth and try to kill each other until one princess remains, becoming the queen.

Each princess has her own trials and tribulations. The chapters surrounding The Beltane were the most exciting. It had the most action, the  most betrayal, and the most Oh My God! moments. It ended in a cliffhanger. You have been warned.

The last few chapters and the cliffhanger are really what sold me on this series being promising. I am looking forward to this series and will definitely continue on.  The going comment in reviews is “it is slow, but keep going because it gets better.” Let me tell you…it gets WAY better!!!

Posted in YA Book Reviews

The Last Boy and Girl in the World


The Last Boy and Girl in the World by Siobhan Vivian, narrated by Jorjeana Marie

Goodreads Rating: 2 stars

Narrator Rating: 5 stars


I semi enjoyed  The List by Siobhan Vivian, so when this book came out, I decided to give it a go. I was severely disappointed for all the same reasons I was bummed by The List.

The narrator brought to life Keely’s massive annoying character sketch. The story ended much the same way The List did, and seemed to have all the same issues. This story is supposed to be about a city that is about to be flooded out, and these group of friends having the times of their lives before everyone goes a separate way. The way the story starts, at the end, made me think other events were going to happen. I didn’t expect who the Last Boy would be.

Every group of friends in high school had the Keely and Jesse type. The types that jokes too much because they don’t want to have anything other than superficial conversation. Keely just really made the whole book horrible. This book had a lot of promise and intrigue, and it did not deliver. I had to force myself to listen and finish the book.

Jorjeana Marie’s narration style really elevated this book. She really, truly, brought to life Keely’s annoying personality and quirks. I actually felt bad for Keely. Not because of everything that happened, but because she was totally oblivious to how her personality was being perceived.

Overall, The Last Boy and Girl in the World has the typical story-line that you find in YA, only it really falls short. I had to force myself to finish. I typically will not finish a book if I have to force myself. I was really disappointed. I felt like I was truly back in high school, but not any of the pleasant feelings associated with it.

In playing devil’s advocate, I know that every story is supposed to have struggle for the main character. This story has plenty of struggle, however, it took too long to get to the point, the end seemed to take longer than was necessary, and Keely was too whiny and annoying. This is not a book i would recommend. At all. i do, however, recommend the narrator. i have heard her in other stories and she is fantastic. I am just sorry she was connected to a book that failed the way it did.

Posted in YA Book Reviews



Hunger by Jackie Morse Kessler

Goodreads Rating: 4 stars


I discovered this book in a random search of recommended books on Goodreads. From then, I actively sought out this book, but could not find in the bookstores. So I ordered it on Amazon. It took approximately 4 days to read, shorter if I had more time to donate to it.

This story has a powerful message, and I admit, there were times I felt it was TOO much. But overall, I am glad it was TOO much at times, because in real life, outside of the stories, it can be MUCH worse for REAL people. Lisa is anorexic. She tries to kill herself, however, Death comes and announces she is the new Famine. Yes, one of the Four Horsemen. This story goes through the emotions and motions with Lisa. Addressing not only how there are people all over the world starving everyday, but also addressing how Lisa views herself. Once Lisa had her “ah-ha!” moment, I found myself to be emotionally involved. It was nice watching Lisa grow and recognize she had a problem. I also liked that Kessler did not just fully force change onto Lisa. It has to be natural, and it is often a slow process.

I think at some point in our lives, we all come across someone with an eating disorder. We may not understand, we may not be able to help. Even trying to help, it may prove to be an uphill battle. Kessler wrote this for the Lisas in our lives.

I won’t give any spoilers. I liked the ending and disliked it at the same time. I wished there was a little more to the book. There is a lot of inner dialogue, which there needs to be, but I wish there were more opportunities to be Famine than what was in the book.

Overall, it is a great read and I highly recommend it.