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Review: "Corliss" by VC Andrews

"Corliss"
by V.C. Andrews
Publisher: Pocket Star Ebooks
Release Date: June 12, 2017

Source: sent by publisher

My Rating: 4 of 5 Stars

Summary from goodreads.com:

From the New York Times bestselling author of the Flowers in the Attic and My Sweet Audrina series, now Lifetime movies, comes a haunting new novella featuring a mysterious, highly intelligent teenaged girl as she struggles to survive high school and understand her place in this complex, sometimes dangerous world.

Corliss is not like other girls at her Los Angeles high school. Incredibly intelligent, shy, and a loner, she has difficultly in fitting in. What’s worse, a clique of girls is out to get her after she refuses to take drugs with them, leading to a violent confrontation. When Corliss is unknowingly drugged, her entire life is turned upside down and no one—not even the handsome valedictorian who had agreed to go out with her—looks at her the same way. Will she be able to return to her high school or is there another path she can take? And where will it take her?
My Review:

I enjoy a good VC Andrews book, they're a nice guilty pleasure. Nothing too hard to digest here, but also a lot of dark, gothic fun for an afternoon read. Yes, some awful things happen, but the way that it's written, it never feels hopeless. It may be a tale that his been told before, high school girl is bullied, but it's told in that special VC Andrews way.

This ebook is very short, but that works great for this short tale. Anything else would have felt dragged out. This ebook is  part of a four part prequel for the Andrews' book "Bittersweet Dreams." I haven't read the full novel yet, but I believe I would have enjoyed Corliss even more if I had.

The novella ends with Corliss being accepted to Spindrift, the school for special teens. I think the book serves as a great teaser for "Bittersweet Dreams," or as complementary reading for those who have already read the novel. For me personally, it made me want to read Bittersweet Dreams so I can find out what happens and who Corliss will meet there.
 
Main Characters: 4/5
Supporting Characters: 4/5
Setting: 5/5

Romance: 3.5/5

Uniqueness: 4/5
Cover: 5/5
Writing: 5/5


Bottom Line: I found the story quite interesting, and I think it will appeal to fans of VC Andrews' work. I will definitely be reading "Bittersweet Dreams" and the additional four "Girls of Spindrift" novellas.




Disclosure: I received an e-copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

"In The Cowboy's Arms" Guest Post from Author Vicki Lewis Thompson



IN THE COWBOY’S ARMS
By Vicki Lewis Thompson

Harlequin
May 23, 2017
$5.75 US; 224 pages
ISBN: 978-0-373-62352-5

Matt Forrest was born to be an actor, but grew up at Thunder Mountain Ranch as a cowboy. So when things go haywire after shooting his first Hollywood movie, he retreats to his childhood home where he knows his parents and foster brothers can help him figure out what he really wants out of life.

But PR agent, Geena Lysander, isn’t about to lose one of her best new clients—so she follows him. And things get complicated because she’s attracted to Matt, and not just for his handsome, movie-star good looks. As she gets to know the man behind the cowboy, their professional relationship becomes passionately personal. Could Matt’s next big role be as Geena’s leading man?


VICKI LEWIS THOMPSON is a New York Times bestselling author who worked as a journalist and a high school English teacher before deciding to become a romance novelist. She was the recipient of Romance Writers of America’s Nora Roberts Lifetime Achievement Award, and has published more than 100 books.


And now a guest post from Vicki Lewis Thompson! Welcome to In the Hammock, Vicki!

How-to Tips for Aspiring Writers by Vicki Lewis Thompson:

Tips for those looking to get their work published/break into the industry.
1. Be an artist and a businesswoman. A myth persists that all you need is a great book and minions will appear to do the rest. A great book is a good start, but it will languish unless it’s shepherded through the process by an educated author who’s studied the market and researched her publishing options.
2. Turn in clean copy. Pleasing a reader is the goal, whether the reader is your mom, an agent, an editor, or the stranger who plunks down money for your book. No one deserves to be handed a story riddled with typos and grammatical mistakes unless that person has agreed, for love or money, to help you make it presentable.
3. Study story structure. Commercial fiction is more than a random collection of scenes. Many excellent books have been written about story structure if you’re hazy on the concept. Even if you think you understand it, brush up on the topic to be sure.
4. Read and analyze bestsellers in your sub-genre. They’ve achieved what you’re aiming for and it’s extremely valuable to figure out how and why they’re reaching a large audience. If the answer seems elusive, keep looking. It’s there.
5. Find your tribe. Writing is a solitary pursuit, but with all the communication tools we have, you should be able to locate your peeps. If possible, funnel down from the general category of writer to fiction writer, then to romance fiction writer and finally to the specific sub-genre(s) you’re targeting. Building a network of those who write what you do will help with your plots, your sales and your sanity.


Dislcosure: I received a digital copy of this book in exchange for this post.

"Their Pretend Amish Courtship" Blog Tour and Guest Post

THEIR PRETEND AMISH COURTSHIP
By Patricia Davids
May 23, 2017
$5.99 US; 224 pages
ISBN: 978-0-373-62278-8


Fannie Erb isn’t looking for a husband – especially if it means she has to leave behind her beloved horses to go find one. What she needs is a way to assure her parents that she’s not hopeless when it comes to love. And her family friend, Noah Bowman, might just be her solution.

A fake relationship would free them both from unwanted matchmaking plans, but how could Fannie predict that pretending to date the handsome boy next door would awaken genuine emotions? By summer’s end, they’ll be free to go their separate ways, but Fannie’s growing feelings are transforming her neighbor into the only man who might ever reign in her adventurous heart.


PATRICIA DAVIDS is a USA Today Bestselling author who grew up in Kansas. She began her career as a nurse, and put her dreams to write a book on hold as she raised a family and worked in the NICU. After forty years, she began writing seriously in 1996. Today, she enjoys crafting emotionally satisfying romances where love and faith being two people together forever.


GUEST POST

Now, I would like to welcome Patricia to In the Hammock Blog as she shares a little about herself with my readers. Thank you so much for stopping by and sharing your shorty, Patricia!!


Summer Hobbies by Patricia Davids

In the summer of 2015 my mother passed away and it quickly became clear that my elderly father couldn’t cope on his own. I made the decision to return home to the family farm located south and east of Abilene, Kansas and become a live-in caregiver. In doing so, I have had the joy of rediscovering the farm life I’d left behind more than forty years ago.

The farm is a working farm and cattle operation run by my youngest brother Gary and his son Kyle. They raise wheat, soybeans, milo and cane. Cane is grown primarily for our own use as cattle feed. Each year my brother and my dad purchase close to 500 head of young steers that are pastured over the summer in the Flint Hills and sold to feed lots in the early fall.

My father’s frail health keeps him off the tractors and out of the fields, but my brother regularly consults Dad on farming and cattle issues. When it became too much for Dad to attend cattle auctions in person, Gary showed us how to pull up the live auctions on the computer. I love him for his compassion. He makes Dad feel he is still an important part of the business he spent his life building. I know Gary could do it all and do it as well without Dad’s input but he is wise enough to listen to Dad’s advice before making his own decisions.

One thing I did not count on when I moved back home was the fact that everyone on the farm has to do their share of the work. I became a cook for harvest crews and delivered the meals to them in the fields. Eating lunch under the shade of a tree at the edge of a field of golden wheat is as much fun now as it was 45 years ago. I have hauled farm equipment, helped check the herds of cattle for sickness or injury, helped with range burning and even done my part at branding time although I don’t get to use the branding iron. I just prod the reluctant steers into the branding chute. A job that is sometimes much harder than it sounds.

Tasks that I did on horseback as a kid are now done from a four-wheeler, but I do get to spend a lot of time outdoors. I can’t believe how thankful I am for this opportunity to get to know my brother better and to take care of Dad. When the work is done, we all enjoy the same summer pastime. Fishing down at the creek.

You should see the size of the large-mouth bass and channel cats we’ve got in there.


Dislcosure: I received a digital copy of the book in exchange for this post.
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