Book Blitz: Asleep – Krystal Wade

To celebrate the release of the spine-chilling YA psychological thriller ASLEEP by Krystal Wade, we have a full blog tour and exciting giveaways ahead! ASLEEP is the debut novel from Blaze Publishing, and answers the question of what happens when Sleeping Beauty meets Freddy Krueger. If you want to see more of ASLEEP, you can still find the Ten Weeks of Teasers and other great content on the Blaze Publishing blog. Order your copy now!

Krystal Wade
Published by: Blaze Publishing
Publication date: February 16th 2016
Genres: Horror, Young Adult

“To cure fear, you must use fear.”

Rose Briar claims no responsibility for the act that led to her imprisonment in an asylum. She wants to escape, until terrifying nightmares make her question her sanity and reach out to her doctor. He’s understanding and caring in ways her parents never have been, but as her walls tumble down and Rose admits fault, a fellow patient warns her to stop the medications. Phillip believes the doctor is evil and they’ll never make it out of the facility alive. Trusting him might be just the thing to save her. Or it might prove the asylum is exactly where she needs to be.

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / Signed Copy

Follow the Blog Tour!
Tuesday 2/16 Wednesday 2/17 Thursday 2/18
Vicki Leigh: First Chapter Reading Jordan Elizabeth: First Chapter Reading Eve Langell: First Chapter Reading
Case Maynard: Promo Post What A Nerd Girl Says: Interview A Thousand Books: Teaser One
Friday 2/19 Saturday 2/20 Sunday 2/21
OriginiquEquanimity: Promo Post Janelle Howard: Teaser Two Archaeolibrarian: Teaser Three
Ryan Hill: Interview Nerd Girl Official: Promo Post
Tesairie’s Book Reads: Promo Post

Chapter 1 read by author:

Author Bio:

Krystal Wade can be found in the sluglines outside Washington D.C. every morning, Monday through Friday. With coffee in hand, iPod plugged in, and strangers-who sometimes snore, smell, or have incredibly bad gas-sitting next to her, she zones out and thinks of fantastical worlds for you and me to read. How else can she cope with a fifty mile commute?

Good thing she has her husband and three kids to go home to. They keep her sane.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

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We’re giving away some awesome prizes to celebrate the release of ASLEEP, including this stylish cuff! Enter with the Rafflecopter below and tell your friends!

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Asylum – Madeleine Roux

Asylum – Madeleine Roux

19346469For sixteen-year-old Dan Crawford, the New Hampshire College Prep program is the chance of a lifetime. Except that when Dan arrives, he finds that the usual summer housing has been closed, forcing students to stay in the crumbling Brookline Dorm—formerly a psychiatric hospital. As Dan and his new friends Abby and Jordan start exploring Brookline’s twisty halls and hidden basement, they uncover disturbing secrets about what really went on here . . . secrets that link Dan and his friends to the asylum’s dark past. Because Brookline was no ordinary mental hospital, and there are some secrets that refuse to stay buried.

Featuring found photographs from real asylums and filled with chilling mystery and page-turning suspense, Asylum is a horror story that treads the line between genius and insanity.

I’ve been meaning to pick this up for ages because it looked creepy and I’m trying to expand the amount of horror books I’m consuming (I’m better at dealing with scary things in books than I am with movies). Unfortunately, this did not satisfy me.

At first, I thought it would be promising, especially when I (belatedly) realized that the book includes photographs from real asylums. To be honest, the photos were the scariest parts. I guess I’m more of a visual person that way, because creepy photos (like movies) leave more of a lasting impression on me than words (I saw a photo of Rasputin in an Anastasia book when I was like 10, and 15 years later, it still haunts me. Real Rasputin was definitely not as creepy-funny as Christopher Lloyd’s version).

But I digress. This book, while interesting, wasn’t scary. It didn’t leave me looking over my shoulder or twitching when I heard a sudden noise. I wasn’t biting my nails out of anxiety for the characters. I certainly didn’t almost miss a bus stop like I did when I was reading The Hollow Boy (which was actually scarier because hello, poltergeists!). In fact, the only reason I didn’t read this at night was because the aforementioned photos appeared randomly, and I didn’t need nightmares of a room with a blood-stained gurney.

I also have to be honest and say I wasn’t particularly enamoured of any of the characters. Dan was okay, though perhaps a bit stupid – at one point, Abby asks him why they’re following the murderer’s instructions and going into a dark place where no one can hear them scream and I was like “no, seriously, why are you doing that? That’s actually the stupidest thing you could do.”

I didn’t really buy the Dan/Abby relationship, and I really wanted Dan to take a pill (he gets all angsty when he sees Abby – who he’s known for all of an hour – talking to Jordan. Until he finds out that Jordan’s gay). I found it hard to believe they were 16-17 when they came across as younger.

Despite my qualms, I still finished it in a couple of days (I’ll give it that – it was a quick read). I wasn’t entirely satisfied with the ending, but I also wasn’t displeased, if that makes sense. I don’t think I’ll be reading the sequels though.


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P.S. Don’t forget to enter this giveaway for an ebook of J.P. Grider’s Naked and Far From Home, courtesy of Xpresso Book Tours!

Flora & Ulysses – Kate DiCamillo // The Last Temptation – Neil Gaiman // Doll Bones – Holly Black

Even though it’s actually Sunday, this still technically counts as a Fiction Friday! Man, I’ve really missed reading books for fun.

Flora & Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures:

“It begins, as the best superhero stories do, with a tragic accident that has unexpected consequences. The squirrel never saw the vacuum cleaner coming, but self-described cynic Flora Belle Buckman, who has read every issue of the comic book Terrible Things Can Happen to You!, is the just the right person to step in and save him. What neither can predict is that Ulysses (the squirrel) has been born anew, with powers of strength, flight, and misspelled poetry — and that Flora will be changed too, as she discovers the possibility of hope and the promise of a capacious heart. From #1 New York Timesbest-selling author Kate DiCamillo comes a laugh-out-loud story filled with eccentric, endearing characters and featuring an exciting new format — a novel interspersed with comic-style graphic sequences and full-page illustrations, all rendered in black-and-white by up-and-coming artist K. G. Campbell.”

I borrowed this from my boss because I heard it was good, and man, I’m glad I did! It’s super cute and has a really sweet message at the end. The illustrations are adorable – you wouldn’t think a half-bald squirrel would be cute, but Ulysses is precious!

My favourite character – apart from Ulysses – was Dr. Meescham who was both hilarious and enlightening. I also liked how dramatic William Spiver was and how Flora came to accept him, despite her initial misgivings.

There were many layers to this book, all of them equally enjoyable: the comic books Flora loved, her relationships with her parents, Ulysses’ story…I loved that, like The Invention of Hugo Cabret, there were chapters that were entirely illustrated in comic-book form that advanced the plot and made it easier to image the characters.

Like I mentioned up above, the ending was really sweet and was something that I think a lot of children will benefit from reading.

The Last Temptation:


“Neil Gaiman brings shock rocker Alice Cooper’s concept album to life in a surreal sideshow of the soul! Join a young boy named Steven on a surreal journey of the soul, as an enigmatic and potentially dangerous Showman seduces him into joining his carnival. Celebrate the 20th Anniversary of this seminal Gaiman work, returned to print for the first time in over a decade. Fully remastered in color, this Deluxe Edition incorporates complete scripts to all three chapters, black-and-white thumbnail art of pre-colored pages, an original outline of the project by Neil Gaiman, and a collection of letters between shock rocker Alice Cooper and the author!”

One of my Christmas gifts from Ro was this newly re-released edition of a Gaiman comic book. I haven’t gotten around to reading any of Gaiman’s comics yet (there are so many and, as someone who has never been a huge comic fan, it’s a bit daunting), but this was a good start.

I liked the Theatre of the Real – it was creepy and scary and could definitely mess with your head – like most of Gaiman’s worlds. The comic was written in such a way that I probably would have guessed it was a Neil Gaiman work even before reading his name on the cover.

Michael Zulli’s artwork is very well done. Again, I’m not a big comic reader, so I don’t really have a basis of comparison, but in my humble opinion, they were eye-pleasing.

While I realize the Showman is supposed to be Alice Cooper (the persona, not the person), I couldn’t help thinking that if this had been made into a movie 15 years ago, Johnny Depp would have done an incredible job as the villain.

The only thing is, now I feel the urge to listen to Alice Cooper…

Doll Bones:

“Zach, Poppy, and Alice have been friends forever. And for almost as long, they’ve been playing one continuous, ever-changing game of pirates and thieves, mermaids and warriors. Ruling over all is the Great Queen, a bone-china doll cursing those who displease her.

But they are in middle school now. Zach’s father pushes him to give up make-believe, and Zach quits the game. Their friendship might be over, until Poppy declares she’s been having dreams about the Queen—and the ghost of a girl who will not rest until the bone-china doll is buried in her empty grave.

Zach and Alice and Poppy set off on one last adventure to lay the Queen’s ghost to rest. But nothing goes according to plan, and as their adventure turns into an epic journey, creepy things begin to happen. Is the doll just a doll or something more sinister? And if there really is a ghost, will it let them go now that it has them in its clutches?”

I also borrowed this book from my boss, after we briefly bonded over a mutual admiration of Holly Black. I have to say, though, it wasn’t as scary-good as I hoped it would be.

I imagine it would have scared the pants off of me when I was younger, which I guess makes sense (since it’s a middle-grade novel). I did relate to the children and how they felt like they should grow up but they weren’t ready to stop playing (story of my life!). But there were parts in the middle that sort of lagged, parts where I was waiting for the Queen to do something terrifying, but nothing happened.

Yes, it was creepy; yeah, there were moments when I wondered how wise I was to be reading it after midnight; but overall, it wasn’t a long-lasting fear. It was those brief seconds of a heightened heart rate, and then…nothing. No after effects, no peeking over my blankets to make sure I was still alone…nothing. Still a decent read, though, and recommended if you like Holly Black.