Monday, 17 October 2011

Review & Excerpt / Kindle Giveaway - Craved (Gwen Sparks series #1) by Stephanie Nelson

I am pleased to be able to host Craved, book 1 in the Gwen Sparks series by Stephanie Nelson on my blog today through Bewitching Book Tours.

Synopsis: Gwen Sparks just wants to live a peaceful life in the supernatural town of Flora, but from the moment she read about the first murdered witch, all hope of peace was abandoned. Possessing the rare ability to read the memories of dead, she volunteers to help catch the culprit behind the string of drained witches. Gwen has to team up with the one man who broke her heart, deal with a ghost who pulls her into the deathly realm at will, and a fight off the advances of sexy but frustrating vampire who not only craves what runs through her veins—he wants her heart. 

Excerpt: I fished my keys out of my sweater pocket but was frozen in place when Aiden’s energy pushed against my back, sending rivulets of power cascading all around me. I shivered against the feel of it as he pushed my long dark hair to the side and touched his lips to the nape of my neck. It was amazing, that he could turn me on with barely a touch. How I had resisted him for two years was beyond me.
The warmth of his lusty power suddenly withdrew, leaving me shivering for a completely different reason. I looked over my shoulder just to make sure he was still there. “What’s wrong?” I asked, afraid of what he might say. He leaned against the far wall with his arms crossed and looked at me with annoyance.
“I thought you said the case wasn’t about Micah?” he said accusingly. In true Aiden fashion, he had turned me on, only to dump a bucket of ice-cold bullshit onto my head. Otherworldly men were incorrigible. Of course, he’d be able to smell traces of Micah on me, even though we hadn’t touched.
“Aiden, you can either stay and discuss the information you said you had, or you can leave. I don’t have to explain myself to you,” I forced out, with the sudden urge to smack the stupid out of him. Without waiting for his answer, I turned the key in the lock and strode into my apartment.
I tried to fling my sweater off, but during my little rant, it got tangled around my arms and I was stuck with what looked like a cashmere straightjacket.
Aiden was in front of me, untangling my limbs by the time I had uttered my third cuss word. I looked up at him and tried to portray the anger I felt, but all I could do was laugh.
“Hold still,” Aiden chuckled as he unbuttoned the rest of my sweater. Finally free of my stupidity, I smacked him on the arm.
“What was that for?”
“You are the most complicated person I’ve ever met! One minute you’re trying to seduce me and the next you’re pushing every single one of my ‘piss-me-off’ buttons. How I’ve dealt with you for the past two years is beyond me. If…”
My words were suddenly cut off when Aiden smashed his lips on mine. I resisted at first, my anger still burning. I pushed against his chest but he only held me tighter, wrapping an arm around my waist while his other hand tangled in my hair. His tongue darted out, teasingly and my anger was extinguished.
I opened my mouth and accepted what he offered, massaging my tongue with his. Tingles radiated up my thighs and settled between my legs as I felt his hardness press against me. Man could he kiss!
I snuck my hand under his shirt to feel the sinews of muscle that waited underneath. I had wanted to get my hands on his sculpted chest ever since I first met him and I was surely taking the opportunity now that I had it. He answered with a moan that I mimicked. I decided there were too many clothes between us for my liking. I made his shirt disappear so that my hands wouldn’t run into any obstacles as I explored his beautiful landscape. He pressed soft kisses all the way down my neck, rendering my body into a boneless mass.
“Um, hello?” Fiona called from the front door. I quickly untangled myself from Aiden to see Fiona wasn’t alone. Her father stood next to her with his steely gaze aimed at me. My mouth hung open in humiliation at what Fiona and her father had just witnessed. Aiden didn’t seem to mind though, he held out his hand to Mr. Bennett who looked at it as if it held a deadly virus. Unfazed by the rudeness that was Fiona’s father, Aiden wrapped an arm around my waist. I nudged him with my elbow and stepped out of his embrace.

Author Bio: I’m an Illinoisan where I live with my wonderful husband. I fell in love with books a little late in life. In my early twenties I found Stephanie Meyer’s books and had never experienced connecting with a book like that. From that moment on I needed more! Since then I’ve moved on from sparkly, fang-less vampire stories but I’ll never forget her wonderful stories that ignited my love of books.

As a child I wrote poems. I never imagined I would one day write a novel. The spark that reading had ignited in me soon became a passion to write. I began writing four years ago but never thought about publishing my stories, I wrote them for the enjoyment. It wasn’t until a year ago that I thought I’d take the self-publishing leap, and publish. It’s been a whirlwind of excitement, stress, and determination but I love every moment of it!  When I'm not writing, I enjoy reading paranormal romance, watching movies, spending time with my family, and playing with my furry children.

REVIEW: 4 out of 5 stars 

Craved is the first book in the Gwen Sparks series by Stephanie Nelson.
Gwen Sparks is a powerful witch with the ability to see into the memories of the newly deceased with the help of her cat and familiar, Aura. She runs her magical store and lives with her best friend, Fiona in Flora, Missouri a small town which houses supernatural beings and where magic restricts anyone human from entering.

Gwen had her heart-broken by her ex Micah because she wasn’t the same species and has avoided dating and the sexy, flirty, infuriating vampire Aiden who has been smitten and pursuing her since he first laid eyes on her, but she cant ignore his advances for long especially since she will soon be needing his help.

When Gwen learns that young vampires are murdering witches for their blood and selling it as a drug known as brew, she accepts an offer to assist the Flora Police Department where she’ll team up with her ex-boyfriend, detective Micah Reynolds to catch the murderer. Not only does she have to deal with working with Micah but one of the murder victims is utilizing her new found ‘rare’ ability of spirit walking and pulling her into the realm of death.

There were a number of twists and turns in Craved, I enjoyed the investigation process and the dramas which surrounded Gwen – the villain has left me intrigued and I am curious to see what he has planned for Gwen in the sequel.

I was completely engrossed in each of the main characters and had a pretty good glimpse of some of the secondary characters, the romance was perfect for me and although there was a ‘slight’ love triangle, I am glad Ms Nelson didn’t make it too complex.

I really enjoyed Craved, the world-building and the enjoyable plot flowed quickly and smoothly and held my interest. I liked Ms Nelson’s writing style and her vivid imagination, the paranormal beings all worked well together and I am curious to see where she takes the brewing feud in the next installment. 

Craved Tour- Kindle Giveaway

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Receive bonus entries for:

** Leave a comment on this blog post
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** Open to US Shipping Only
** Winner will be drawn at the conclusion of the tour by the tour organizer - Bewitching Book Tours  


  1. This sounds like a really good read I'll be adding it to my goodreads.

  2. I loved Craved and I'd love to visit Gwen and Aiden's little town! I highly recommend this book!

  3. That sounds like a great read! Thank you for the giveaway. I might have to increase my TBR pile just a little bit more.

  4. The book looks interesting. Thanks for posting about the book

    eileen at

  5. I look forward to reading the book : )


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