Monday, May 12, 2014

Review ~ Scents and Senses

Scents and Scenses Blog Tour
  scentsScents and Senses: Supernatural Friends. What the fairy tales didn’t tell you Playing the role of a knight in shining armor is more complicated than it seems in the storybooks, as sixteen-year-old Joy discovers when she repeatedly comes to the rescue of a fifteen-year-old human. But when she meddles in the girl’s social life, Starra sends her packing. Starra is determined to completely dissociate herself from the subterranean creature that has manipulated her life and cast her into the limelight. However, her resolve is soon tested when she becomes involved in a critical situation where supernatural assistance can enable her to carry out a daring plot. Eventually, Starra’s involvement with her new other-wordly friends extracts a heavy price when she is beset by challenges that range from the down- to-earth struggles of a typical teenage student, to the realm of the fantastic. Nothing prepares her, however, for the ultimate challenge.  
Author Loren Secretts Loren Secretts was raised in a book-filled home, in a sleepy east coast suburb of the US. These factors are undoubtedly responsible for her early design of a number of exciting imaginary worlds that she could escape to from time to time during her childhood. In her teen years, between schoolwork and lending an ear to her friends, Loren had less opportunity to go AWOL. Instead, her experience as a confidant to others inspired her to major in psychology in college and earn her M.A. in the field on the west coast. As an adult, Loren has found fulfillment in her work with children and families for more than a decade. Her passion for writing was revived when she discovered that she enjoyed delving into the human psyche to write psychological reports. But clients' reports are safe with Loren, who guards secrets fastidiously. Indeed, one of her aspirations is to work as a psychotherapist for the CIA, but since she now lives with her family in Canada, that dream will have to await its turn…

Chapter One


Ever since I’ve been old enough to kick off on a condor with my own two chicken feet, I’ve been drilled to mind my own business.

Mind your own business, the first of the American Ten Commandments.

It’s not one I subscribe to, even though in our community, not minding my own business means more than social suicide; it’s a crime when we ascend above ground.

For thousands of years we deeems have kept away from the creatures running over our heads with their five-toed feet. So if anyone in my community gets wind of the risky job I’m on these days, I’m practically a goner. But that doesn’t stop me from shadowing a certain teenage fivetoe.

There’s also a totally different occupational hazard involved in this position I’ve created for myself, one I’m suffering from right now: this job occasionally makes school seem relatively stimulating. Yawn. I’ve played too many Angry Condor games to count since Starra got involved in some fantasy book a couple of hours ago and lost contact with the real world. Even if I knew how to become visible to the fivetoe eye and suddenly revealed myself, I bet she wouldn’t notice me, the cute teen perched on her windowsill.

Time simply refuses to advance, and I have to resort to counting the spider eggs cocooned in their nest on a nearby tree branch. A sudden sigh interrupts my lame occupation. There’s a starry look in the big eyes, and I notice the novel is slipping out of Starra’s dreamy grip. This is my window of opportunity! I finger the starchy edge of the book jacket and coax the book forward.

Thud. The book falls to the floor, and the movement seems to bring Starra back to her senses. At last she grabs a hoodie and sets out, probably for one of her night excursions on the Vista Del Mar Path. Are we running or biking tonight?

Running it is. I jog behind her, finding the excursion by the shoreline an improvement to watching her read. At least we are moving.

She runs for half an hour, at a speed faster than the sea turtle pace usual for fivetoes. Then she slows to a stop at a jagged rock, half-submerged in the ocean. I groan quietly and contemplate leaving. From experience, I know she’ll climb to the top of her rock and dream away. I start backing off, but when I’m some fifty feet away, I look back. Starra makes a pretty picture there, her silhouette perched high on the rock. Her long legs are tucked under her, and her head hangs back as she keeps her gaze on the stars above. If only she would let loose the heavy dark mane of hair she always twists up at the back of her neck, she would truly look like a mermaid risen from the sea.

Something pulls me back to her. I can’t explain it, but I have a feeling trouble is lurking nearby, waiting to snatch her in its net.

My chicken feet make an about face and follow Starra home as she takes the shorter route through town.

Chapter Two


Rushing by the shadows harboring in Little Florence Square’s imposing arches, I remember how, as a kid, I believed the images were ghosts. An impulsive urge to feed my old fear makes me scan the deserted café court. Do I see a littering of beer bottles in the corner? Weird. It looks out of place here, like a scene supplanted from the mainland.

A shadow shifts! Before my brain has time to process the image, I yelp. The shadow jumps out of a corner right in front of me!

“Luc?” My fright gives away to surprise. Ever since he left for college a couple of years ago, I’ve hardly seen the son of my mother’s friend around the island.

“Whadya want?” the tottering image fumes. The stench of alcohol overwhelms my senses. It doesn’t take too much brain power to figure out he’s been drinking in the privacy of the square’s nooks, away from critical eyes.

“Luc, are you okay? Should I call for help?”

The square’s lamplights strike Luc’s face with an ethereal glow. His bloodshot eyes seem to look right through me. There’s no sign of recognition, which makes me realize just how badly he’s stoned.

“Ya gonna t-t-tell Aunt Clara, huh?” Even in his current pathetic state, Clara Brick is on his mind? Well, she does have a history of watching him like a hawk. His mother, Madame Brick, had often discussed the phenomenon with Maman, insisting that her sister-in-law was attempting to build a case against Luc in the hope his grandfather would disinherit him, leaving Clara as sole heiress.

Luc’s body sways clumsily as he moves in on me. Instinctively, I move several steps back, but for each step I take, he takes one toward me, and I retreat further, till my back is pressed against the stone wall. His mouth opens wide as he bellows, “I’m gonna make sh-sure you don’ tell nobody nuthin!”

Jewelz Review~
Scents & Senses is a YA fantasy that follows Starra - a 15-year-old teenager living on an island off the coast of California. Joy - a fairy-type creature has taken it upon herself to introduce her half-human sister Radiance to Starra so they can become friends. Only Joy breaks several of her people's rules in the process. When Starra learns that Joy is the one responsible for all the crazy things happening lately, she tells Joy to stay out of her life. Unfortunately this happens right before the island is taken under siege by the powerful Mr Steel.

I think a variety of readers will enjoy this complex story that intertwines a bit of mystery with fantasy along with the drama & fun of YA lit. It's a clean read too!

FYI ~ we receive complimentary copies of the book for participation in this blog tour.

    Blog Tour Giveaway $25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Ends 6/1/14 Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. a Rafflecopter giveaway

1 comment:

  1. Thank you all for hosting me, and Jewelz for her review. You gals must have a lot of fun together! (Growing up, I was always jealous of girls with sisters :)).
    Wishing you lovely times together and great reads.