Monday, June 23, 2014

Elusive Memories Release Party with The Unexpected Gift by Amanda Shofner

Title: Elusive Memories
Author: Amanda Shofner
My Rating: A

Genre: Urban Fantasy 
Series: The Hunted #1
Main Characters: Sam
Release Date: May 2014
Links to Purchase
Sexual Intensity: mild

Story Overview:
The Northern Alliance Betterment Society, better known as the Hunters, has persecuted the Gifted for years. When Sam Benson is taken and her memory stolen, she certainly isn't the first victim of the Hunters. But she’s determined to use her family's influence as memory-bringer elders to make sure she's one of the last.

As soon as she escapes the Hunters' compound, anyway.

Two Hunter guards claim to be working to get Sam free, but only one has her best interests at heart—and holds the key to mounting an offense against the Hunters. With her memory fractured and the Hunters set against her, can she choose the right person to trust?
My Review:
This book was so different from most everything else out there right now, but I loved it. Honestly, I began reading it at the hair salon on a day when I had a hundred and one things to get done...and I kept sneaking my kindle back on so I could read just a few more pages. This story is riveting. I needed to know what was going to happen next.

It's a completely different world and as the reader, you have no idea what is going on at first. The author did an incredible job of slowly revealing details of the world bit by bit...just enough to keep you from getting confused, but not near enough (especially at first) so that you really knew what was happening or who Sam, the heroine, should trust. The thing that's never in doubt though is that Sam is in deep danger and she's gonna have to trust someone to get out of it. Ack... and because of the way the story is written, I'm not sure what else to say that won't be a spoiler of some sort. 

In the parameters of this world there are two main groups of people that affect the story...Hunters and then the Gifted which are made up of Illusionists and Memory-Bringers. Sam is a memory-bringer...that means she has a paranormal gift to "read/experience" other people's (and her own sometimes) memories, both past and future. The Hunters want to eradicate the gifts from humanity, but only after they figure out a way to steal the abilities within those gifts. When the book begins, Sam is imprisoned in a facility run by the Hunters and definitely in danger of eventual death. But part of the difficulty of what's happening to her is that she doesn't remember much of anything. They've been using drugs on her that erase her own memories which makes it so difficult for her to figure out who to trust.

I loved Sam. She felt like a normal girl in incredibly extraordinary circumstances that require her to rise above. She has to be strong or else she's going to die. She has no other choice and she refuses to back down and let that happen. If she's going to die, she fully plans to go out fighting with everything she has. How can you not love that?

There are two men who are trying to help her. I don't want to say anything here to spoil the story, but the one...gah, I really loved him. I love his attitude and the glimpses of emotion he shows and I desperately want more of both of them. 

There is a snippet of epilogue, which is not a cliffhanger, but omg...I want book #2...NOW!! I cannot wait. This first book set up such an incredible story. I definitely want more. It was just fabulous!

Title: The Unexpected Gift
Author: Amanda Shofner
My Rating: B+

Genre: Urban Fantasy 
Series: The Hunted #1.5
Main Characters: Sam & Coop
Release Date: June 2014
Links to Purchase
Sexual Intensity: mild

Story Overview:
When Michael "Coop" Cooper gave up his Gift, he was told it'd be forever. And he accepted it. Years later, the sacrifice doesn't seem so terrible: he’s learned to survive without it, he's gained the necessary intel to begin building a Gifted army, and he found the woman he intends to claim for his own.

In the middle of their recruitment process, his Gift comes back. Unexpectedly. But rather than celebrating the impossible, Coop's carefully laid plans are about to come to naught... unless he can find a way to survive and make it right.

My Review:
Coop and Sam have always had a complicated relationship. She's not quite sure she can trust him. He's trying not to scare her away with the full depth of his feelings. That only gets worse after things change for Coop and his gift. On a good day Memory-Bringers and Illusionists don't really get along. Coop gave up his gift as an Illusionist though to help bring them all together. And now she's running scared because things have changed.

I loved that this novella is from Coop's point of view. In the first book, his feelings were fairly obvious, but that is nothing compared to actually being in his brain and part of his thought process. I love him even more now. I love them together even more now. This is a short little story, but it adds so much to the overall world and the overall story. I love it!

I also really love this world that Amanda Shofner has created. It incredibly innovative and I cannot wait until the next installment in the Hunted series. Bring on Janey!
Amanda is announcing the PRINT RELEASE of Elusive Memories today. The paperback includes The Unexpected Gift, which is a novella set after EM and has some fun for those who wanted a little extra closure.
Find it on Amazon: US | UK
It hasn’t popped up on Amazon CA yet or B&N, but you can order from CreateSpace directly if you wish. (CreateSpace says it could take 6-8 weeks to appear on all distribution channels, which would hit at the end of July or beginning of August.)
If you want a signed copy, it can be arranged, but please email Amanda---you can find the address on her author contact page to discuss details. 
AND because releasing the print isn’t cool enough, she has a list of FUN POSTS and OTHER ACTIVITIES today to celebrate.
PS. You can also snag Blog Events or Blogger's Mindset today FOR FREE.
Or the Kindle of Elusive Memories for 99 cents!
Reviewer's PSS...I stole this info off Amanda's go visit her, too!!!


creativedeeds said...

Great review! (No surprise ;) ) I love this world that Amanda's created and I can't wait to see what happens next. I think we may be in for it though. She's trying desperately to reach 'Evil Author' status.

Stephanie @ Once Upon A Chapter said...

Elusive Memories was such a good book wasn't it? I really enjoyed it too! And much like you, I'll be very excited to get my hands on book number 2 as well!

Red Iza said...

Great review, that book looks definitely good !