5 New Covers (McGee, Preston, Roux, Vincent, Weber)

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28th November 2017 Releases

Belated Happy Release Day to:

Melinda Braun
Avalanche
Simon & Schuster Pulse (US & CA: 28th November 2017)
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“I promise it’ll be a weekend you’ll never forget.” A trip like that is exactly what Matt was hoping for – a fun adventure. A daring escape. A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to go backcountry skiing in a thrilling but dangerous pass through the Rocky Mountains. The perfect way for Matt to forget about his disappointing father and maybe let loose a little with his best friend and a group of carefree adrenaline junkies. But then their guide takes them off-path…and straight into an avalanche. By the time they make it safely into an abandoned cabin, one skier is dead and another severely injured. Trapped with no heat, no water, and no radio the group decides to wait it out. Help will come. It has to. But it doesn’t. And Matt knows if they wait any longer they’ll be dead – just another bunch of victims in Mother Nature’s twisted games. Armed with only a handful of supplies and his fierce determination Matt decides to goes head-to-head with the elements, battling hypothermia, frostbite, and even mountain lions in order to find help and save them all. That is if Mother Nature doesn’t kill him first.

[REVIEW] The Body Shop: Himalayan Charcoal Purifying Glow Mask

First-time skincare reviewer here. I’d bought a hand-cream-and-nail-file set from The Body Shop (Australia), and it arrived in the mail with some free sample packets. So I tried the 5ml sample of Himalayan Charcoal Purifying Glow Mask.

Tester: 31-year-old Australian female who lacks air-conditioning, hates the outdoors, and does not have a skincare “routine” (except for the daily bath/shower wash). Sometimes use an oil-free acne face wash when I remember. Never wear make-up.

Skin condition: Sometimes oily, sometimes dry. Due to sweat, it’s at its oiliest in warm weather – which is when I tested the Himalayan Charcoal, after my nightly shower in November (spring).

Ease of use: Instructions are simple enough for me. Apply to face, avoiding eyes and lips. Rinse off in circular motions after 5-10 minutes. I used my analogue watch to time, and stopped after about 6 or 8 minutes. It’s good the instructions have leeway, so it’s OK to be “late” scrubbing it off.

Applying it to my face (I used my fingers) was easy. I worried beforehand, wondering if the Charcoal would result in blackface while it was on. But the Charcoal turned out like a light texture of mud in a grey colour, with a slight greenish tinge. After I applied it all, my face tingled, which let me know the product was actually doing something. (Either that or an allergic reaction, but I think it’s the former.)

Ease of removal: I filled a basin with warmish water about thrice. Dipped my fingers in, then wiped my face in a circular motion. Repeat to infinity. This seemed to take quite a while, but as a first-time mask user I’m not sure if that’s common. To get off the stubborn odd bits that remained, I quit the circular motion stuff and just wiped. Did not check my watch, so don’t know the timeframe for removal.

After: Face rinsed and dried, I looked in the mirror (which I don’t like doing). Noticed a few blemishes on my nose and hairline. So the Charcoal did not remove them, which is disappointing. The packet said something about “glowing skin”, but I doubt there was radium 😉

Would I buy?: The tubs are like $35 (Australian, for 75 ml), which is out of my budget, so I wouldn’t. Would I happily accept as a gift or as samples? Yes, please.

Thanks for the unexpected samples, The Body Shop.

Buy: US; UK; CA

14th November 2017 Releases

Happy Release Day to:

Kelley Armstrong
A Darkness Absolute (Rockton, Book 2)
Macmillan Minotaur St. Martin’s (US: 14th November 2017)
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When experienced homicide detective Casey Duncan first moved to the secret town of Rockton, she expected a safe haven for people like her, people running from their past misdeeds and past lives. She knew living in Rockton meant living off-the-grid completely: no cell phones, no Internet, no mail, very little electricity, and no way of getting in or out without the town council’s approval. What she didn’t expect is that Rockton comes with its own set of secrets and dangers. Now, Casey and her fellow Rockton sheriff’s deputy Will chase a cabin-fevered resident into the woods, where they are stranded in a blizzard. Taking shelter in a cave, they discover a former resident who’s been held captive for over a year. When the bodies of two other women turn up, Casey and her colleagues must find out if it’s an outsider behind the killings or if the answer is more complicated than that…before another victim goes missing.

Cassandra Rose Clarke
Star’s End
Simon & Schuster Saga (US & CA: 14th November 2017)
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Esme Coromina has always known that one day she would run the Four Sisters, the small planet system that her father grew into a corporate empire. Raised as the pampered heir to the company, Esme lived the best years of her life at Star’s End, the estate her father built on the terraformed moon where he began his empire. In the tropical sunlight and lush gardens, Esme helped raise her three motherless half-sisters. But as Esme is groomed to take over the family business of manufacturing weapons for the mercenary groups spread across the galaxy, she slowly uncovers the sinister truth at the heart of her father’s company. And when those secrets are finally revealed, Esme is sure that she’s lost her sisters – and part of her soul – for good. Now, after a lifetime of following her father’s orders, Esme has a second chance. For the first time, Esme is making her own decisions, and the impact of her decisions will reverberate throughout the Four Sisters. As Esme struggles to assemble her estranged sisters for one last goodbye with their dying father, she has to choose whether she wants to follow in her father’s footsteps – or blaze a daring new path.

Stefanie Gaither
Into the Abyss (Falls the Shadow, Book 2)
Simon & Schuster (US & CA: 14th November 2017)
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Violet Benson used to know who she was: a dead girl’s clone, with a dead girl’s memories. But after Huxley’s attempt to take over the government left her memories and personality wiped all she has left is a mission: help the CCA fight back against the rest of Huxley’s deadly clones that are still at large. But when a group of clones infiltrate CCA headquarters, Violet is blamed. Already unsure of where her loyalties should lie, Violet finds herself running away with an unlikely ally: Seth, Jaxon’s unpredictable foster brother. With Seth at her side, Violet begins to learn about a whole new side of her city’s history – and her own. But when she learns the shocking truth about cloning, Violet will have to make a choice – and it may be one that takes her away from everyone she ever loved.

Mira Grant
Into the Drowning Deep
Hachette Orbit (US & AU: 14th November 2017)
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Seven years ago the Atargatis set off on a voyage to the Mariana Trench to film a mockumentary bringing to life ancient sea creatures of legend. It was lost at sea with all hands. Some have called it a hoax; others have called it a tragedy. Now a new crew has been assembled. But this time they’re not out to entertain. Some seek to validate their life’s work. Some seek the greatest hunt of all. Some seek the truth. But for the ambitious young scientist Victoria Stewart this is a voyage to uncover the fate of the sister she lost. Whatever the truth may be, it will only be found below the waves.

Andy Weir
Artemis
Penguin Random House (US, UK & CA: 14th November 2017)
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Jazz Bashara is a criminal. Well, sort of. Life on Artemis, the first and only city on the moon, is tough if you’re not a rich tourist or an eccentric billionaire. So smuggling in the occasional harmless bit of contraband barely counts, right? Not when you’ve got debts to pay and your job as a porter barely covers the rent. Everything changes when Jazz sees the chance to commit the perfect crime, with a reward too lucrative to turn down. But pulling off the impossible is just the start of her problems, as she learns that she’s stepped square into a conspiracy for control of Artemis itself – and that now, her only chance at survival lies in a gambit even riskier than the first.

Now Available for US Pre-Order

Marta Acosta: THE DOG THIEF: 1st January 2018: Buy (US)
Kelley Armstrong: AFTERMATH: 22nd May 2018: Buy (US)
Megan Hart: WICKED ATTRACTION: 6th February 2018: Buy (US)
Megan Hart: FORBIDDEN STRANGER: 6th March 2018: Buy (US)
Carrie Jones: ENHANCED (paperback): 14th August 2018: Buy (US)
Caragh M. O’Brien: THE KEEP OF AGES (paperback): 28th August 2018: Buy (US)
Amy Plum: NEVERWAKE: 7th August 2018: Buy (US)
Rachel Vincent: BRAVE NEW GIRL (paperback): 8th May 2018: Buy (US)
Rachel Vincent: STRANGE NEW WORLD: 8th May 2018: Buy (US)
Jennifer Wolfe: WATCH THE GIRLS: 10th July 2018: Buy (US)

5 New Covers (Abbott, Armstrong, Beckett, Vincent, Wolfe)

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7th November 2017 Releases

Happy Release Day to:

Cyn Balog
Unnatural Deeds
Sourcebooks Fire (US: 7th November 2017)
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Victoria Zell doesn’t fit in, not that she cares what anyone thinks. She and her homeschooled boyfriend, Andrew, are inseparable. All they need is each other. That is, until Zachary Zimmerman joins her homeroom. Within an hour of meeting, he convinces good-girl Vic to cut class. And she can’t get enough of that rush. Despite Vic’s loyalty to Andrew, she finds her life slowly entwining with Z’s. Soon she’s lying to everyone she knows and breaking all the rules to be with Z. She can’t get enough of him – or unravelling the stories of the family he’s determined to keep hidden. Except Z’s not the only one with a past. Straight-laced Vic is hiding her own secrets…secrets that are about to destroy everything in her path.

Cyn Balog
Alone
Sourcebooks Fire (US: 7th November 2017)
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When her mom inherits an old, crumbling mansion, Seda’s almost excited to spend the summer there. The grounds are beautiful and it’s fun to explore the sprawling house with its creepy rooms and secret passages. Except now her mom wants to renovate, rather than sell the estate – which means they’re not going back to the city…or Seda’s friends and school. As the days grow shorter, Seda is filled with dread. They’re about to be cut off from the outside world, and she’s not sure she can handle the solitude or the darkness it brings out in her. Then a group of teens get stranded near the mansion during a blizzard. Seda has no choice but to offer them shelter, even though she knows danger lurks in the dilapidated mansion – and in herself. And as the snow continues to fall, what Seda fears most is about to become her reality…

Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Twelve (The Naturals, Novella)
Disney Hyperion (US: 7th November 2017)
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Cassie Hobbes has been working with the FBI since she was a teenager. Now twenty-three years old, she and her fellow Naturals have taken over running the program that taught them everything they know. As a unit, they’re responsible for identifying new Naturals – and solving particularly impossible cases. When their latest case brings back a ghost from their past, Cassie and the other Naturals find themselves racing against the clock – and reliving their own childhood traumas. In a small, coastal town in Maine, there has been a rash of teen suicides – or at least, that’s what the police believe. Mackenzie McBride, age twelve, thinks differently. Desperate to make herself heard, she stands at the top of a lighthouse, threatening to jump…unless the FBI agents who rescued her from a kidnapper at age six come to hear her out. Enter the Naturals. It doesn’t take Cassie long to realize that Mackenzie isn’t bluffing: she truly is convinced that the suicides are murder, and she really will jump if she can’t get the FBI to believe her. To the outside world, Mackenzie is nothing more than a traumatized child. But so was Cassie, once upon a time. So were Michael, Dean, Sloane, Lia, and Celine. With a storm rolling in off the ocean and Mackenzie’s position becoming more precarious by the moment, the Naturals have very little time to get to the truth about the deaths – and about twelve-year-old Mackenzie McBride.

Lydia Kang
The November Girl
Entangled Teen (US: 7th November 2017)
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I am Anda, and the lake is my mother. I am the November storms that terrify sailors and sink ships. With their deaths, I keep my little island on Lake Superior alive. Hector has come here to hide from his family until he turns eighteen. Isle Royale is shut down for the winter, and there’s no one here but me. And now him. Hector is running from the violence in his life, but violence runs through my veins. I should send him away, to keep him safe. But I’m half human, too, and Hector makes me want to listen to my foolish, half-human heart. And if I do, I can’t protect him from the storms coming for us.

Marissa Meyer
Renegades
Macmillan (US: 7th November 2017)
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The Renegades are a syndicate of prodigies – humans with extraordinary abilities – who emerged from the ruins of a crumbled society and established peace and order where chaos reigned. As champions of justice, they remain a symbol of hope and courage to everyone…except the villains they once overthrew. Nova has a reason to hate the Renegades, and she is on a mission for vengeance. As she gets closer to her target, she meets Adrian, a Renegade boy who believes in justice – and in Nova. But Nova’s allegiance is to the villains who have the power to end them both.

Tiffany Reisz
Michael’s Wings (Original Sinners, Anthology)
8th Circle Press (US: 7th November 2017)
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Griffin has just popped the question – yes, that question – and Michael doesn’t have an answer. He flees town for New Orleans to see his confidante and sometime-domme, Mistress Nora. Will a weekend of beignets and beatings help him untangle his knotted-up heart? This collection contains this new novella, as well as six previously-published stories starring Mistress Nora’s favourite angel and Griffin – his master, his true love, and the sexy-as-hell bane of Michael’s existence.