Flight by Alyssa Rose Ivy – Book Review & Author Interview

The title of this book only hints to the treasures that lie within. Fans of YA fantasy will love this!

Sometimes you just have to take flight.

A summer in New Orleans is exactly what Allie needs before starting college. Accepting her dad’s invitation to work at his hotel offers an escape from her ex-boyfriend and the chance to spend the summer with her best friend. Meeting a guy is the last thing on her mind—until she sees Levi. 

Unable to resist the infuriating yet alluring Levi, Allie finds herself at the center of a supernatural society and forced to decide between following the path she has always trusted or saving a city that might just save her. 

I have been lucky enough to be invited to be part of the AToMR tour of Flight by Alyssa Rose Ivy. This first book in the Crescent Chronicals was sent to me to read and review, which you can read below.

However I was a little cheeky and asked if Alyssa would be willing to do a short interview about the book as well on my stop of the tour, to which she agreed! So before the review I thought I would share what she has to say about the book!


Alyssa Rose Ivy

Author Interiview

You have written other YA novels. What makes this book stand apart?

Alyssa: Flight is a bit of a departure from my Afterglow Trilogy. One of the biggest differences is that Flight is a more mature YA, and has edgier content. Another difference is that the paranormal society in Flight exists completely within our own world, where as The Afterglow Trilogy has a more epic fantasy aspect to it.

What was the most difficult part about writing this story?

Alyssa: The most difficult part of writing Flight was deciding what about New Orleans to include. I love the city and it holds tons of memories for me, so it took some effort to decide what places to include in Flight and which ones to save for later books in the Crescent Chronicles. 
What part was the most fun to write?

Alyssa: I went to college in New Orleans, so writing Flight was an experience in nostalgia. I had a lot of fun reminiscing about college and remembering just how many cool parts of New Orleans there are. 

What is you favourite scene in the book?

Alyssa: My favorite scene is when Allie first discovers who Levi really is. I love her reaction, and it’s fun to finally reveal what he’s been hiding. 
What do you want readers to take away from this book that they might miss? 

Although Flight is a fun paranormal romance, I hope readers pick up on of the more realistic experiences that Allie and her friends experience as they make the transition from high school to college.

Book Review 

The title and cover of this book I feel tell you a lot. Flight certainly promises some sort of air travel, and the rather attractive young couple on the cover promise some romance. But I never learn not to judge a book by its cover. This does have all of the above, but it also has something more. Something much more!

I can’t really say its nothing I haven’t read before. The young lover with an attitude problem (Levi), insecure protagonist with family problems (Allie) and the new best friend (Hayley) all work really well together to make this a well written YA paranormal romance. But the introduction of a completely new supernatural race, and the teasing glimpses of the rest of the supernatural world in New Orleans promise to make this a series to keep an eye on. 
I started and finished this book in just three nights. Although the build up to the supernatural element of the book was slow, with the first third dedicated to introducing us to the characters and New Orleans. But when it got going, I flew (as always… pun intended) through the pages lapping up each new dimension to this new fantasy world. 
There were some unnecessary characters and plot items that, I feel, took up too many pages in the opening chapters to then be of little or no importance later on. The main example being best friend Jess, who lit the opening chapters with her vivacious personality and behaviour, yet dwindled into nothing before the book really got going.

The ‘will-she-wont-she’ bad boy romance did feel a little cliché to start with, but I urge you all to stick with it to the final pages for a great little twist that left me stunned!

Overall, I started this book with too many preconceptions of just another YA paranormal romance, to have all my expectations smashed and replaced with something a lot more gritty, well written and enjoyable.

I give it an 8/10.

At just £1.97 for Kindle download, this has to be worth a look (if you are in the U.S. you can download it for $3.11). I will defiantly be checking out the next book in the series!

As this is a book blog tour, there is also some other fab blogs getting involved, each offering something a bit different. Also writing a review today is Tee over at A Diary of a Book Addict, make sure to pop other to her blog and see what she makes of it.
Thanks for reading,
Love Rie x

Kelley Armstrong – Author Interview.

Any one who knows anything about my blog or me personally will know I am a huge fan of Kelley Armstrong. Discovering her adult fantasy series Women of the Otherworld really pushed me towards having to share good books, and thus start blogging, and I would not hesitate to recommend her books to anyone!

So you can imagine my excitement after a cheeky email to Kelley Armstrong via her assistant came back with a fantastic little interview. So without further ado, I present to you an interview with THE Kelley Armstrong about the Women of the Otherworld series, its final book ’13’ and what comes next….


It is well known that Bitten was written as a stand alone novel, and then expanded into a series. But I was wondering what was you inspiration for the first book and how did you come to expand it for the rest of the series?

When I wrote Bitten, my goal was to create the kind of werewolves I wanted to read about.  The idea was sparked by seeing an X-Files episode on werewolves.  As much as I liked the show, I didn’t care for their version of werewolves, which were the typical man-killing monsters. I’d always been fascinated by the idea of combining humans and wolves, and that show gave me an excuse to write a story about that kind of werewolf.

When the question of turning Bitten into a series came up, I gave it a lot of thought. As much as I loved the stories and characters, I couldn’t imagine writing a long series about just werewolves.  I decided to instead create a linked series with changing narrators/protagonists.  In the second book, Stolen, I introduced other supernatural characters, and spun off to one of them–a witch–for the next novel.

You have mentioned on your website that you and the character of Elena share the same year of birth. Would you say the character is based on yourself? Or is that where the similarity ends?

All my characters have a trait or two in common with me.  That just makes them easier to write.  With Elena, she’s my age, from my geographic area, with my education level, etc, which made it easy for me to get into her head as my first narrator.  Paige and I share a common interest in computers (I was a programmer) so I could easily write that part of her life and personality.  Eve and I both have daughters around the same age, so that part of her character came naturally. Even my teen characters share something in common with me. But it’s only a trait or two. Ninety-five percent of their character is very different from me!

Are any of the other characters based on people you know?

None of them are based on anyone I know. I pull bits and pieces from everywhere–friends, family, acquaintances–and mix it together.

What can we expect from the final book in the series, Thirteen?

I’m going to answer that with a quote from the book that one of my publishers used. 

“Anything you thought you knew about our world? Forget it. Someone has tossed out the rulebook. Ghosts can cross the divide. Hell-hounds can manifest. Demi-demons can possess living children. And it’s not going to get any better until it’s over.” 

As you might guess from that, 13 is my Otherworld upheaval book, when everyone comes together to fight the biggest threat they’ve faced.
Is this really the end of the Women of the Otherworld series? I am so sad to see it end!

I do hope to write more stories—and maybe even a future novel or two—but I’m ending the book-a-year schedule and launching a new adult series.


I think you will agree these are some fantastic answers. I did get very excited when I first saw them in my email inbox. With just over a month until the release of Thirteen (July 24th) I had to share them with you. And with the announcement she is writing a new adult series I am over the moon!
If you want to know more about Kelley Armstrong you can check out her website, Goodreads profile or read the other blog posts I have written about both her, the Women of the Otherworld series, Darkest Powers or Darkness Rising series. 
Thank you for reading,
Love Rie x

Author Interview: Bill Blais

This is my second instalment in a series of posts for the Kelly and Umber series, which consists of an interview with the author Bill Blais. If you want to know what I am doing this series of posts please go back and check out my first post.

This is only the second author interview I have conducted, and the first one to go up on the blog (the other one will go up a bit later in the year). It is thus fair to say that the question that I asked were fairly bland, but I was really happy with the response I received, and I hope you will be too:


Rie: How long have you been writing?

Bill Blais: Well, the first story I wrote was during my sophomore year of high school English class, which would be, whoa, almost 25 years ago. I wrote more pieces during that year and the years that followed, submitting when I thought I had something worthwhile and receiving the requisite (and largely deserved) rejections. A few years after college, though, I hit a lull of several years. I continued to toy with writing, but I wasn’t really serious and produced only a couple of complete pieces during that time.

All that changed in 2004. That year, as my 32nd birthday approached, I realized that I hadn’t become the published author I had imagined I would be all those years earlier. Of course, the reason was simple enough: I wasn’t writing. Not seriously.

So I challenged myself to write a complete novel — beginning, middle and end. If I could finish that, then maybe I had a chance. If not, I would put that dream aside for good.

It took me a year to write the first draft of Witness and almost three more to revise it (13 times!), and it was an incredibly frustrating, exhilarating, painstaking process (my wife deserves a martyrdom for sticking with me through all that), but I did it. The very best part, though, wasn’t finishing the book, but itching to start the next one. That was the moment that I truly felt I was doing what I should be doing.
Since then, I really haven’t stopped.

Rie: Why did you first decide to start writing fantasy fiction?

Bill Blais: Oh, the genre was a given long before I even considered writing. My first books were Narnia, The Lord of the Rings, Thomas Covenant, Dragonlance, et cetera. I wanted desperately to be swept away to these worlds. When I got older and started to consider writing, fantasy was a natural choice. I’m also a fan of science fiction, historical fiction, and mysteries, and I’m working in those directions, as well.

Rie: Who are your favorite authors?

Bill Blais: It comes down to good writing, and I tend to prefer time-tested authors, like Jane Austen, Charles Dickens, Patrick O’Brian, and Henryk Sienkiewicz.

Rie: What can readers expect from the Kelly & Umber series?

Bill Blais: My goal is to give readers something they haven’t had from the genre to date. I don’t lay any claim to true originality, but I try to avoid convention and pre-conceived expectations wherever I can.

Rie: Is the character of Kelly based on anyone you know?

Bill Blais: Yes and no. Like all the characters I write, I want to make her as realistic and honest as possible. For me, this means imbuing her with traits I am familiar with from my own experience and relationships, but it also means allowing her to use, change, or discard these traits as she sees fit in the development of her own unique character. I know that sounds a bit evasive, but it’s true.

Rie: Are you writing anything at the moment, if so what?

Bill Blais: Time’s been a little tight with the new baby girl, but I’m just finishing up the final (hopefully) revision of a science fiction short story I want to get out in the next couple weeks. I tried a different approach with this one and it was a fun ride, but I have trouble with short fiction, because they have to be, well, short, which is not my strong suit.

Rie: What will be your next book release?

Bill Blais: I expect to publish Another Night at the End of the World, a more traditional fantasy novel, this summer. After that, the third Kelly & Umber novel (currently titled The Road to Hell) is on schedule for this coming winter. Finally, the second in the All Prophets are Liars series (also outlined and prepped) should be ready for a summer 2013 release. There might also be a sci-fi novel slipped out in between sometime.

Because I’m obviously short of things to do.

I think you will agree that Bill is fantastic interviewee, and a big congratulations for the birth of his little girl, as well as some great little books.

You can read other (more creative) interviews with Bill as he has taken part in his book tour here:

  • The Land of Oz – Some great answers around how becoming a new Dad has affected Bill’s writing.
  • Left and Write – Find out what Bill would bring save if the Zombie Apocalypse came upon us! 
  • Raine Thomas – Find out what the biggest compliment Bill has ever received about his books. 

You can find out more about Bill on his websiteFacebookTwitterGoodreads

The next post in this series with be a book review of the first book in the Kelly & Umber series, No Good Deed

Thanks for reading,

Love Rie x

Interview organised by the wonderful Annabell Cadiz at Illuminated tours.