Friday, July 28, 2017

Blog Tour: The Last Gambit, by Om Swami

Welcome to the blog tour for 
The Last Gambit,
sponsored by
YA Bound Book Tours  
and hosted by Garima Om!!

For my stop, I'm featuring  an 
excerpt with mini-review!

The Last Gambit
Om Swami
Trade Paperback Edition, 208 pages
Black Lotus
January 25, 2017
Kindle Edition, 210 pages
Black Lotus
February 1, 2017
Chess, Contemporary Fiction, Diverse Reads,
Young Adult Fiction

 Success by design is infinitely better than a win by chance. Vasu Bhatt is fourteen years old when a mysterious old man spots him at a chess tournament and offers to coach him, on two simple but strange conditions: he would not accompany his student to tournaments, and there was to be no digging into his past. Initially resentful, Vasu begins to gradually understand his master’s mettle. Over eight years, master and student come to love and respect each other, but the two conditions remain unbroken – until Vasu confronts and provokes the old man. Meanwhile, their hard work and strategy pay off: Vasu qualifies for the world chess championship. But can he make it all the way without his master by his side? Inspiring, moving and mercurial, The Last Gambit is a beautiful coming of age tale in a uniquely Indian context.

This mini-review is of the excerpt below, and 
not of the entire book.

This sure looks like a fascinating novel! I've never read or heard of anything even remotely like this. I have always been curious about chess, but I know it's a very complex game of strategic skill, requiring a lot of focus and patience, which I don't have much of, lol. So I definitely admire those who do! 
This novel will afford me a look at how a chess champion thinks, as well as how such a person trains to win through brilliant, well-thought out moves. And who knows? Maybe reading this book will REALLY motivate me to start cultivating the necessary patience to learn this game! 

  ‘You are a genius, Vasu,’ he said. ‘I’m investing all my time in you because I know some day you’ll surprise everyone, including yourself.’ My chest swelled with pride. ‘And that day is not far,’ he added. I felt as if I had won the world championship. He thinks I’m a genius! I couldn’t contain my smile and adjusted myself in my couch. ‘But,’ he said, gently bringing me down a notch, ‘you are not consistent. You do play some brilliant moves, but they don’t add up.’ As always, he had a nugget of wisdom. ‘Every move, Vasu, every move must put greater pressure on your opponent. To win, you must play good moves and do so consistently.’ ‘The same goes in life too,’ he continued. ‘A consistent and persistent man of average intelligence is more likely to succeed than an erratic and lazy genius. A hundred well played draws, or a hundred lost but well-fought games are better than one victory by fluke. Success by design is infinitely better than a win by chance.’

Success by design is infinitely better than a win by chance – this got etched in my mind. This was it. The missing link. I had been playing in the hope that success would come, that it would just happen. It dawned on me that success was a sculpture that I had to carve and chisel at patiently. I had to design my success.

Purchase Links

Om Swami is a monk who lives in a remote place in the Himalayan foothills.

He holds an MBA from University of Technology, Sydney and a Bachelors in Business Computing from University of Western Sydney. Swami served in executive roles in large corporations around the world. He founded and lead a profitable software company for seven years with offices in San Francisco, New York, Toronto, London, Sydney and India.

Om Swami completely renounced his business interests to pursue a more spiritual life.

To access the complete tour schedule, just click on the button below!

Book Blogger Hop No. 102: Movie & TV Show Tie-Ins

Welcome to the Book Blogger Hop,
hosted by Billy @

For more information, and 
to find out the topic of next week's question, click HERE.

This Week's Question

Do you read tie-in novels to
movies or television series?

(Submitted  by Billy @ 

My Answer

Although I don't make it a point to read such books, from time to time I definitely do so. 

I saw the movie "Wonder Woman" recently, and LOVED it, so I promptly bought the novelization, which I'm planning to read pretty soon. This movie was a total revelation to me! Although I've heard of the "Wonder Woman" TV series, I was never interested in watching the re-runs after watching one once. It just seemed so silly. And I didn't like her costume, which I thought was too provocative. The movie version, though, was entirely different! The character REALLY kicks major butt in the film, and so do her Amazon sisters! WOWZA!! So now I've become a fan! Not having grown up reading WW comics, I now have to acquaint myself with this superhero's world.

This is the movie tie-in novel I'm planning to read. It's the  official movie novelization, and was written by Nancy Holder, who has written two Buffy:The Vampire Slayer tie-ins, as well as her own novels, which are mostly in the YA genre.


In addition to the book shown above, I'm also planning to read several WW graphic novels. I will soon be posting a review of the one shown in my sidebar.

My favorite TV show of ALL TIME is Star Trek TOS (this means "The Original Series")!! Yes, I'm a DIEHARD Trekkie!! I have a collection of ST TOS tie-ins that I'm also planning to read. Since there are many Trekkies out in the universe (a lot of them on this planet), a LOT of these tie-ins have been published. 

Of course, the Star Trek universe includes some newer series, such as Star Trek: The Next Generation, Star Trek: Voyager, and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. Now we have Star Trek: New Generation. I don't care about any of these, though. To me, the ONE AND ONLY Star Trek series is the original one, where I can fondly watch Kirk, Spock, Uhura, Dr. McCoy, Scotty, Sulu, and Chekhov patrol the outer reaches of space, boldly going where no one has gone before! 

I feel the same way about the ST TOS movies that have been made, except that I don't much like the ones with new actors. Zachary Quinto, as good an actor as he is, just can't hold a candle to Leonard Nimoy, whom we unfortunately lost two years ago.....

Here are some of the ST tie-ins I've read in the past. 

I recently reviewed this third novel on this blog. It was pretty good, and it whetted my appetite for more! You can check out my review HERE.

Since I have mentioned Buffy, I would also like to read the tie-ins for that TV series. I must sheepishly confess to not having watched one single episode, however..... I guess I was too busy with Edward and Bella, from The Twilight Saga! Lol.

What are your thoughts on
this topic?
Please leave a comment!
If you're participating in this meme,
I'll go comment on your 
own BBH post.
If not, I will then comment on one 
of your blog posts!
Thanks for visiting!!! 

Thursday, July 27, 2017


I'd like to announce the winner
of this July Fourth Giveaway!!

And the winner is....

Brian @ Babbling Books!!


He has already claimed his prize!


Please stay tuned, as I host giveaways
all the time, whether my own,
or through blog hops 
and blog tours!!
Most of the time, these giveaways 
are international, except for 
those held by blog tour companies. These companies set their own rules for their giveaways. 



Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Can't Wait Wednesday No. 26: Kiss Me In New York, by Catherine Rider

Welcome to "Can't Wait Wednesday"!
This is a weekly event hosted by
Tressa @ Wishful Endings, and inspired by "Waiting On Wednesday", which used to be hosted by
 Jill @ Breaking the Spine.

For more information, please click HERE.

As in the previous meme, this one showcases future releases  we book  bloggers 
are eagerly anticipating!!
There's also a Linky widget, so participating blogs can link up!

Here's my choice for this week!

 Kiss Me In New York
Catherine Rider
Hardcover,  200 pages
Kids Can Press
October 3, 2017   
Christmas Romance, Contemporary Romance, 
Young Adult Fiction

It's Christmas Eve at JFK in NYC.

Charlotte is a British student, waiting for a flight home after the worst semester of her life. Anthony is a native New Yorker, surprising his girlfriend at the airport after three months apart. Charlotte has just been dumped, and Anthony is about to be dumped, right in the middle of the holiday crowd.

Charlotte's flight is canceled when a blizzard blows in, and Anthony can't bear to go home. So, they set out into the city together, clutching a book Charlotte picks up in the airport gift shop: Ten Easy Steps for Getting Over Your Ex. For this one night, they'll focus on healing their broken hearts ... together.

Step-by-step, the two struggle to put the past behind them. But the snow is so enchanting, and the holiday lights are so beguiling, that soon their shared misery gives way to something else. Soon, they're not only over their exes --- they're falling for each other.

Then a subway ride splits them up by mistake. Will they reunite before Charlotte's flight leaves New York forever?

Why I can't wait for this one!

This book was first published in a Kindle Edition
in 2016. This is its first publication 
as a print book, which, of course, 
I MUCH prefer!!

I really like this cover, but what has captivated me the most is the story and setting. I mean, Christmas and romance in New York City? OMG!! This is the stuff of dreams for a die-hard romantic like me!! I want to see how these two characters manage to get over their obviously inadequate exes, to realize that they have found something much BETTER. Mix this up with some holiday spirit, and you've got me hooked! And I don't care how sappy this book might be, either! Like I said, I'm a HUGE sucker for this combination of ingredients!!

Unfortunately, I was unable to locate any biographical information on this author. There aren't any pictures available, either. After doing a Google search, I have not found a website, or a Twitter account, or a Facebook account. The author does have a Goodreads page, but there's no picture on it. Nor is there a bio.

What do you think of my choice?
Leave your link below, so I can
come check out your pick(s)!

Monday, July 24, 2017

Blog Tour: Omega's Choice, by Lilli Carlisle

Welcome to the Omega's Choice 
Blog Tour,
sponsored by 
Bewitching Book Tours!!

For my stop, I'm featuring an 
excerpt with mini-review!

Omega's Choice
(The Black Ridge Wolf Pack, Book 1)
Lilli Carlisle
Trade Paperback, 186 pages
CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
 Digital Edition, 183 pages
Boroughs Publishing Group
May 25, 2017
Fantasy. Humor, Paranormal Romance

 Scarred but powerful, Black Ridge Wolf Pack leader Aldric Forst has been selected to mate with an Omega—but first he must protect her from the dark forces that would corrupt her magic.

In a realm of elves, ogres and white witches, where danger is ever-present, Princess Helena Lichtenberg lost her parents at a young age. Raised by her uncle and aunt, Helena values family above all else. Now, as decreed by tradition, it is time to select a mate.


Enormous, scarred and scary, Black Ridge Wolf Pack leader Aldric Forst has never drawn the eye of any Omega. Why would he? But, on this, the night of what he swears is his last selection celebration, everything is different. One of those most beautiful, magical and powerful women, the niece of the king and queen themselves, wants him. And Aldric has never wanted anything more in return. No force—no matter how dark, no matter how powerful—will take Helena from him.

This mini-review is of the excerpt below, 
and not of the entire book.

Ever since I met a certain wolf shapeshifter named Jacob Black, I've enjoyed reading such stories. And this one sure looks wonderful! I really like the brief scene shown here. The interaction between the two brothers is funny, and Aldric's instant attraction to Helena is obviously the stuff of fairy tales. I also like the hints here that the world of this novel is a very complex one, with interesting family and social networks. In short, this excerpt has certainly hooked me, so I'm really looking forward to reading this book!

Princess Helena took that moment to turn toward him again. Instantly, his heart raced, his palms became sweaty, and a nervous excitement rolled around in his stomach, which he wasn’t entirely sure he liked. After all, he was a feared warrior, people looked to him for guidance and strength, and now he felt like he was going to pass out because a gorgeous woman was smiling at him with such joy. 

As Amalia spoke to Helena, the princess’s small omega stone on her forehead glowed, and it was impossible to miss the waves of happiness coming from her. 

“Looks like the princess is happy you agreed to dance with her, brother.” Godric looked about ready to burst with excitement. “Should I call home and have the rest of our party get on the road?” 

“No, not yet, Godric. Let’s see how the evening goes first. Then we can call in reinforcements.” Aldric didn’t want to get ahead of himself. He refused to be let down again. “What do you think Lady Amalia meant by she’d waited years?” 

“I have no idea, but I do know the only way you’re going to find out is by asking the princess herself. Ready to waltz, brother?”
“At least all mother’s lessons are about to come in handy. What if she expects our normal life to be like this?” Aldric panicked. 

“Okay, now you’re just looking for problems that aren’t even here yet. Get out there and sweep that princess off her feet with the alpha you are. Wait until I tell Cassandra she was right yet again.” Godric had a look of absolute glee at the prospect of making that call back to the pack. 

“Yeah, well, if Cassandra was right about this, brother, then she also predicted that I would have to fight for my omega.” 

Godric turned to face Aldric and all humor fled from his expression. “If we have to fight for your omega, then it’ll damn well be one we win, I can assure you of that. If this night goes well, I’ll be calling in more warriors as well. They will be here before the sun rises.” Both Theron and Tofa nodded in agreement, even if Theron continued to tap away on his tablet. 

“We shall see, Godric. Let’s hope I don’t step on her foot. Then it may be the royal guard we need to fight.” Aldric laughed as he, Godric, Theron, and Tofa stood and made their way across the ballroom to stand in front of King Leonidas, Queen Alexandra, and Princess Helena. 

Princess Helena was simply stunning; her emerald green eyes beamed with happiness as he approached. Aldric had never felt this level of immediate attraction before in his lifetime. Helena’s curly blonde hair was pulled away from her face, showcasing her royal tattoo and tiny vines twisting down her slender neck to her collarbone. Her smile lit up everyone and everything around her and her green eyes shone with happiness. 

Aldric, Godric, Theron, and Tofa stood before the king and queen, bowing respectfully and waiting for King Leonidas to speak. The entire time, Aldric hoped like hell he didn’t screw this up. 

The room had grown strangely quiet.

Lilli Carlisle lives outside Toronto, Canada. She’s a member of the Romance Writers of America and its chapter, Toronto Romance Writers. Lilli is a mother of two wonderful girls, wife to an amazing man and servant to the pets in her life. She writes both contemporary and paranormal romance and believes love should be celebrated and shared. After all, everybody needs a little romance, excitement, intrigue and passion in their lives. Lilli loves to hear from readers! You can find her here:

To access the rest of the tour, just 
click on the button below!