DelSheree Gladden was one of those shy, quiet kids who spent more time reading than talking. Literally. She didn't speak a single word for the first three months of preschool, but she had already taught herself to read. Her fascination with reading led to many hours spent in the library and bookstores, and eventually to writing. She wrote her first novel when she was sixteen years old, but spent ten years rewriting and perfecting it before having it published.
Native to New Mexico, DelSheree and her husband spent several years in Colorado for college and work before moving back home to be near family again. Their two children love having their seventeen cousins close by. When not writing, you can find DelSheree reading, painting, sewing and trying not to get bitten by small children in her work as a dental hygienist. DelSheree is the author of the Escaping Fate Series, Twin Souls Saga, The Destroyer Trilogy, The Aerling Series, Someone Wicked This Way Comes Series, and Date Shark Series.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in a small town in Northern New Mexico. New Mexico has a rich culture that has influenced my writing greatly. I grew up hearing stories of skinwalkers and dreamcatchers, and was surrounded by beautiful art like Navajo blankets and Kachinas. The mythology and art of New Mexico was a big inspiration for my series, Twin Souls Saga. My love of the mythical plays a big role in many of my other books as well.
What's the story behind your latest book?
My latest book, Wicked Hunger is the story of Vanessa and Zander Roth, two pretty screwed up teens. There problems aren’t the normal teenage drama, though. Both struggle to control a nearly inconsolable hunger for pain and suffering. Living a normal life is tough, but things only get worse when a strange new girl named Ivy shows up at school. She instantly rubs Vanessa the wrong way, but Zander is absolutely captivated by her. The problem is, Ivy incites both of their hunger, making it very dangerous to be around her. Vanessa thinks Ivy is up to no good. Zander thinks she’s pretty much perfect. One of them is right, and the wrong move may cost them their lives.
Every love story is unique, and that's no truer than in The Date Shark Series where a group of friends from medical school all struggle to find their way through life and relationships.
Eli Walsh battles a traumatic past when he meets Leila Sparro and must chose between love and obsession.
Guy Saint Laurent has never aspired to marriage and family, until he makes an unlikely friend who needs his help but is reluctant to accept it.
Vance Sullivan's effort to help a troubled client gets side-railed when his own life completely falls apart and that same client is the only one who can get through to him amid his grief.
Sabine Saint Laurent's life has always been rather perfect and fairly effortless, until a surprise changes not only her career path but her entire life plan.
All Eliza wants to do is escape her past and get through culinary school, but trouble always seems to find her no matter how hard she tries to not get involved. Murder, drugs, sex trafficking...there's no telling what mystery she'll stumble into next.
Echo Simmons has lived her life attempting to balance the ghosts harassing her and the fact that the people closest to her think she's insane. It's not until a slip up on her online webshow brings the FBI into her life that she begins to learn why she sees ghosts and what her unwelcome talent may cost her in the end...
Have you ever felt like you needed a handbook to get through life? You're not alone. Learn how to survive chaos, stalkers, liars, embarrassment, and more as you experience the craziness that comes with life alongside the characters of The Handbook Series.
The Roth siblings are used to surviving. It's all they've ever done. Survive the strange hunger that compels them to feed off others pain and suffering. Survive the tragedies that plague them. Survive the cruelty others heap upon them.
But can they survive learning the truth?
Mason is tired of being the guy nobody can see. Literally. Neither he nor Olivia know why he's invisible, or why she's the only one who can see him. It's simply how things are, how they've always been since Olivia found Mason crying in her front yard at five years old. She's happy to let things lie, but Mason isn't, at least until the truth finally begins to be revealed and learning who and what he truly is puts everyone he loves in danger.
One choice can change everything, and not just for the person who makes. Unraveling the truth of what happened centuries ago and dealing with the consequences of one devastating choice pits Arrabella against fate, gods, and her own limits.
Libby Sparks has always know her fate is to die. Death is better than the alternative. She'll do whatever it takes, including sacrifice her own life, to avoid becoming a monster. It means sifting through the web of lies controlling society, but finding out the truth may be even worse than death.
The tribal stories Uriah and Claire grew up hearing where just that. Stories. At least that was what Uriah told himself. He didn't want to think about the eerie likeness he had to tribal heroes...until he has no choice but to embrace his gifts in order to save Claire's life. His quest to save her sets them both on a path that will reveal a truth that could destroy everything they believe in.
"You can never go home again" has never been truer than for John and Gretchen. Stepping back into a life he only partially remembers makes John question everything. Returning to the shattered remains of a wedding that never happened is unbearable for her. Can either of them put their lives back together after such an abrupt parting?
Simple and easy falls apart when secrets revealed require making promises and opening up to the possibilities of hurt and hope.
Neither Leo nor Piper want more than a simple, no-stress friendship. Secrets and surprises force them to admit neither one is nearly as in control of their futures as they think they are.
Everyone has bad days. Anna Elizondo is going on three years of bad days. It started with her mother’s illness and eventual death, continued with a decision that ruined a friendship, and culminated in her father announcing they were broke and moving away right before her senior year of high school.
How long can Eliza keeping looking over her shoulder before she finally sees her own death approaching?
New Year’s means resolutions, getting on track, making decisions.
For Eliza Carlisle, starting a new year means making tough choices, even if those decisions mean losing friends and possibly getting kicked out of culinary school.
“Why would someone commit murder over a cupcake?”
That is Detective Gordon’s question. Eliza doesn’t have an answer, and doesn’t particularly want to find one. Gordy promises she doesn’t have to get involved…just look at the cupcake and use her culinary knowledge to tell him why it would inspire murder.
It’s never that easy.
Not for Eliza Carlisle.
What’s worse than getting dragged into a murder investigation because you tried to help a friend?
Getting dragged into a murder investigation, drug ring, and criminal syndicate because someone mistakes you for a friend of your most despised coworker.
Eliza has never hated Danielle more, but helping her is the only way to save herself. After that, Danielle is fair game.
It’s bad enough that Echo already has ghosts haunting her 24/7, now her past mistakes want to join the fun and come back to haunt her, too? Moving to Georgia was supposed to be a fresh start. So far, it's turned out to be a fresh start at more chaos. After battling Devourers for the soul of her childhood friend, Echo learns the depth of what her abilities might cost her.
Everyone thinks Echo Simmons is crazy, but being The Ghost Host isn’t just a YouTube hoax like people think. It’s the only way to control the ghosts haunting her…at least until the FBI shows up asking questions.
A 007-style handoff between a girl he knew in high school and the college’s star football player catches Sanford Camden’s eye. He almost wishes it hadn’t. Almost.
An insane father seems like the biggest stumbling block to Dahlia’s freedom, until long-hidden secrets begin bubbling to the surface, and what once seemed like paranoid delusions become threats to her life.
Gretchen's call for help saved his life, but the damage done may be impossible to repair. While she hopes his memories will return, John works to hide the fleeting images of another woman he keeps seeing, afraid Gretchen will cancel the wedding if she finds out.
Being oblivious to all the signs that your life is about to fall apart doesn’t stop it from happening to Sara Taylor.
Alone except for the Siamese cat her boyfriend—ex-boyfriend—Joseph left behind to teach her a lesson, Sara has no clue how to survive on her own. Pride forces her to either sink or swim, even when sinking seems the most likely outcome.
Secrets are unraveling, but they only bring up more questions and not enough answers. While the Roth siblings attempt to recover from the devastating confrontation with the Godlings, each one must overcome their own demons to survive.
Eliza Carlisle has the unwanted talent of attracting trouble, in all its forms. That couldn’t be truer than when she moves into the most bizarre apartment building on the planet. Weekly required dinners with the landlord and assigned chores are bad enough, but the rules don’t end there. Top most on the list of requirements is NO physical violence against the others residents.
Watching her two nephews and a puppy named Thor for the weekend was supposed to be fun for Greenly Kendrick. Sweating to death at a never-ending baseball game while getting gum in her hair, soda down her shirt, and an ice cream pedicure wasn’t part of the deal. Neither is finding out the best blind date she’s ever stood up is there to witness it all.
The Aerling Series Box includes all three books in the series, Invisible, Intangible, and Invincible. As a bonus, this box set includes 3 BONUS short stories Aerling fans will only find in the box set. Curious about how Mason and Olivia first met, or about how the Parker family turned out, and what about Mason and Olivia's future? You can find out in the Aerling Series Box Set!
Forced with holding up their end of an impossible bargain, Van and Zander must choose between playing it safe and risking everything. Freedom seems impossible, but can they hold onto who they are long enough to survive?
Even after Vanessa and Zander Roth barely survive the Eroi’s attempt to expose them for what they are, they aren’t safe. Sitting balanced on the edge of impending death and unthinkable power, they must turn to the Godlings for help. Their help requires payment, but neither of them knows the true cost. Will David’s training create villains,as they fear, or can they discover their true purpose?
Born with an insatiable hunger for pain and suffering, Vanessa and Zander Roth struggle to hide the truth of who they really are. Keeping their secrets becomes even harder when Ivy Guerra arrives and stirs their hunger into a frenzy. Will their need to feed on other’s agony turn them into villains, or can they somehow find a way to become the heroes of their own dark story?
Olivia’s best friend is not imaginary. He’s not a ghost, either. And she’s pretty sure he’s not a hallucination. He’s just Mason.
He is, however, invisible, but being invisible won’t hide Mason for long…
When faced with the choice between saving Milo’s life and embracing her destiny, Libby Sparks knew there was only one answer.
Become the Destroyer.
Libby is about to learn that accepting her fate is only the first step in figuring out what being the Destroyer truly means.
Sixteen year old Libby has a secret destiny that is about to be revealed.
When Libby is proclaimed "The Destroyer" the world turns against her. The ruling Guardians want her dead, but Libby is determined to prove she has no intention of destroying anything. That seems easy enough until her one remaining friend, Milo, is attacked and Libby must chose between her own life and Milo's.
Uriah never believed in his tribe’s old stories. When Claire’s life is in danger, he must battle not only ancient myths and legends come to life, but the truth behind the lies he’s been told all his life.
on May 04, 2012
Immortal, beautiful, peaceful, Talia lives a perfect life. But is perfect enough? Watching humans is fascinating to the faerie. They intrigue her to the point that she considers giving up immortality to join them. The heaviness of the choice holds her back until she happens upon one human male that brings new meaning to her life, and strengthens her desire to step away from peace and beauty. The other side of a wish is rarely ever as glorious as one expects, however…something Talia soon finds out.
Faerie Wishes is a young adult romance novel, centered on the dual existence of humans and fae. I would pin it down as more of a mystical, rather than paranormal romance. Faeries like Talia just don’t seem to fit into the same category as demons and vampires. Quite the opposite. Mixing the real world with myth and legend is obviously a hugely popular right now, but unlike many other urban fantasy or paranormal romances out there, the focus is more on the experience of the characters than the mystical, often dangerous aspects of whatever fantastic element is employed.
The relationship between Talia and Cayden is the main focus of the book. Within their romance, the central problem is whether or not Talia is going to give up her immortality and join Cayden in the human world. I enjoyed the simplicity of the romance, but at times I did wish there had been a little more than just the two of them. Later in the book (probably not until the last third) you find out that in the past Talia harbored very deep feelings for another fae. This was an interesting addition to the story, and added good conflict, but when Deaghan was introduced I immediately wondered why he hadn't been mentioned earlier.
So much focus was put on Talia and Cayden with no external conflict through most of the book. Even though their relationship was very sweet, I did feel like it lacked some intensity because I had no reference point to compare their feelings for each other. Had I known from the beginning that in the past that Talia loved Deaghan, but had been spurned, her finding comfort in Cayden’s arms would have taken on new meaning for me.
Another issue I had with their relationship was that the progression was very quick in the beginning, and then slowed down quite a bit. Talia sees Cayden the first time, and is intrigued, and then a few chapters later they are very much in love with each other. I’m not against love at first sight, but this felt very abrupt because there was very little lead-in to the sudden change. Then, for a large section of the book the relationship stayed fairly stationary, focusing mainly on Talia’s choice. I felt like the progression could have been a little more fluid. The climax was done well, but it could have been even more impactful if there had been additional back story and a consistent building up to that point.
This next comment may not be an issue for every reader, but for some it may be. I found the level of editing to be a distraction throughout the book. I know how hard it is to edit when you self-publish. My books have some typos in them that need fixing once I’m done with final exams as well. Even the last Robert Jordan book I read had a couple of missing words and misspellings. But when it is consistent and interrupts the flow of the book, it can affect readability. I don’t think the editing issues were so major that it made the book unreadable, but more thorough editing would improve the flow and keep the reader from getting distracted.
Having brought up these points, I did enjoy the book. It was a charming love story with interesting characters, and a good moral. I thought it was a good casual read, especially for the upcoming summer months. It isn’t the kind of love story that will have you zipping through the pages, but I think it will appeal to upper middle grade, younger teen, and reluctant readers. There is no sex and almost no language, so it’s great for younger ages. Reluctant readers will probably also enjoy the streamlined plot and smaller cast of characters. And let’s face it, most kids could use a reminder that the grass isn’t always greener on the other side.
A Simple Matter of Justice
on Feb. 06, 2013
Samantha considered asking a security guard to walk her to her car, but she thought she would be safe enough. It's a decision she will regret for the rest of her life. Dragged into the forest, raped and murdered, Samantha's fears that she will not be the only victim. So when she if offered a change to take back her life in order to bring her killer to justice, she puts aside her fear of facing again in order to protect others.
A Simple Matter of Justice is Annamaria Bazzi's first published short story. The spiritual and paranormal elements create an interesting mixture of real world crime and supernatural revenge. Samantha experiences both, and at first struggles to understand both aspects. Her rape and murder provide an emotional surge that she continues to battle with throughout the story. Her experience was a bit graphic, which makes it inappropriate for younger readers.
Tempering her fear and anger is the support of the spirit animals that offer her a second chance. One of those, Steven, is sent to help her on this journey. Steven provides the companionship Samantha needs, even though he also inspires a certain amount of fear in Samantha as she tries to cope with the violence she just experienced. Their relationship is a buffer against the more harsh elements of Samantha's experience. While their is little romantic element to their relationship, their is friendship. Anything more would not have set well for me.
My only complaint is that certain aspects of this story were underdeveloped. Some areas were rushed through to keep the length in check. Emotional responses occasionally lacked the depth they could have reached because of the fast pace. Overall, this was a good introduction to Bazzi's work. I am interested to read more of her work and see how she handles a full length novel.
on Feb. 16, 2014
Life inside the rings has never been pleasant for Rosa. The rigid rules don't sit well with her adventurous and strong-willed spirit, and she often finds herself in trouble because of this. Lately, however, getting into trouble is her only defense against her hateful stepfather. She half expects her attitude will be what costs her everything in the end, but that would have been more bearable than the truth.
Set in post-apocalyptic Russia, The Woodlands society is harsh and rigid. The focus on "All Kind" over individuality is a common theme in dystopian style novels, but there is an element of uniqueness to this world that draws readers in immediately. The Superiors rule the Woodlands by keeping the different groups of survivors isolated from each other to the point of absolute dependency. Even Rosa's strong personality has trouble seeing past the inevitability of falling in line with the Superiors. Even so, Taylor still manages to keep an underlying sense of hope throughout the terrible trials Rosa faces to keep the readers from despairing too much.
Something I always look for in a novel is a strong cast of characters. Rosa is a character most readers will easily relate to right off the bat, but it is the varied supporting cast that truly gives this novel the sense of reality it needs to capture readers' attention. I very much enjoyed the complexity of each supporting character and the depth of not only their emotions, but their motivation and perspectives on their lives. Joseph is a beautifully deep character who's initial cheerful personality might make readers not take him seriously, but his depth of conviction and troubled soul will make him unforgettable.
It isn't just the supporting characters that readers will have a hard time pulling away from. While this isn't Rosa's story alone, she is definitely the main focus. Rosa isn't immediately the most "likable" character in the sense of her being the kind of girl who easily wins people over. At times I would find myself wishing she could be just a little different, a little less antagonistic or more able to open up to those who love her, but if she were any different she wouldn't be nearly as captivating. It is Rosa's imperfections that make her so real, so unique. It will pull at readers' heartstrings as they suffer along with her through incredible trials.
Rosa's story is not always a happy one, yet her strength and fierce love for her friends never lets the reader lose hope in her. This is the first book in The Woodlands Series, and I can promise that readers will be eager for book two as soon as they finish this one.