Blog Tour & Giveaway for Emily’s Gift (Book Two in the Emily Stokes Series)

A Gift for Emily Review Tour Banner  Title: A Gift for Emily

 Author: J.P. Galuska

 Series: The Emily Stokes Series #2

 Genre: Paranormal Romance, Suspense

 Publisher: Self-pub.

 Format: Ebook, Paperback

                                                                                                     Length: 67,000 words

A Gift for Emily Final copy

Purchase from Amazon:   A Gift for Emily (The Emily Stokes Series) (Volume 2) (Print edition)

A Gift for Emily (The Emily Stokes Series) (Ebook)

Book Description (From Goodreads)

A Gift for Emily picks up right where A Kiss for Emily leaves off. Emily’s life appears to be back on track and she’s still in love with Sam. Then the anonymous gifts start showing up on her doorstep from a suitor who has made his presence known, but his identity a secret. After he reveals a twisted plan, her entire family finds themselves in danger. The stalker could be anyone. Emily doesn’t know who to trust. Not even her heart. 

Book Review

If you liked the first book in the series, A Kiss for Emily, you will love this second one.  Emily’s life becomes more complicated with multiple conflicts and mysteries that keep readers in suspense throughout the story.

Emily and Sam are still committed to each other in the beginning of the story. Emily’s family has accepted Sam as a part of their lives even though they believe it is in Sam’s best interest to keep quiet about his presence. Now that Emily’s parents approve of Sam, both spend a great deal of time together. Unlike with other couples, however, Sam’s situation limits their physical contact. The most frustrating part for Emily is that she and Sam must not kiss:

“You know we can’t kiss on the lips, Miss Emily. It’s far too risky. If our souls were to bind, I’d never forgive myself for taking you to Hell with me. “

Sam appears to be a good person, but, for some reason, the Grim Reaper is after him to take his soul to Hell. Sam doesn’t want to do anything to put Emily in jeopardy. Yet, they both question how far they can take the relationship if they can’t be intimate.  There is “ghost seduction,” but for Emily, it isn’t as satisfying as the closeness that can exist between two physical beings.

Grim Reaper

Sam constantly travels from place to place to avoid be caught by the Reaper. One option to save Sam from being hunted is for him to find a living body to inhabit. This is a desperate option that neither Sam nor Emily really wants to consider because of the moral dilemma it presents, but they won’t rule it out completely as a solution.

As Emily searches for answers about Sam’s predicament, her plans get sidetracked when she starts receiving gifts by her front door. At first, it seems she has a secret admirer until the gifts become disturbing and threatening. The secret admirer has become a dangerous stalker.

 heartbreak15

To help solve the mystery, the police become involved, and, in particular, one Deputy Sherriff David Kinsworthy, who is the first to investigate the case. It soon becomes obvious there is chemistry between David and Emily, but both know nothing can come of it. Emily professes to love Sam, and because she is only seventeen, David will not risk his career to become involved with her. As the mystery intensifies, though, circumstances continue to bring them together. Can they continue to deny this attraction?  Although Sam tries to remain calm, it isn’t easy for him to watch the two together and think that David has more to offer Emily. Although both promise to protect Emily, she does have her doubts about how much Sam can really do to help her.

Initially, readers may think they can immediately identity the stalker, but as the plot unravels, other characters’ actions and motives are called into question. Gradually, Emily begins to wonder about those she would normally trust.  The strength and maturity of her character emerge in the sequel as readers watch how she struggles to protect her family and to save Sam from his fate.

The story’s suspense builds up to a shocking, climatic cliffhanger that leaves the reader wondering about the unresolved outcome that may change lives forever.  By the end of the book, I literally had my mouth hanging open and found myself saying , “No, no, no! I need more!”

OMG

I am ready for the next book and hoping it will not be too long of a wait.

I received an ARC of this book on behalf of the author in exchange for an honest review.

Rating

top of the mountain copy40

About J.P. Galuska

Mom's stuff 008

J P lives in Minnesota with her family, a crazy dog, and the world’s best cat.

The Emily Stokes Series Facebook | Author Facebook | Website | Twitter @JGaluska

 

GIVEAWAY

Click on the link below to enter to win the following

A $15 Amazon gift card, magnets, pen and coffee mug.

The Contest Ends May 1, 2013

The Winner will be contacted by the email submitted to enter the giveaway to receive further instructions  regarding the prizes.

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Please see my review for A Kiss for Emily 
 
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Review of A Kiss for Emily: (Book One of the Emily Stokes Series)

Book Cover

Purchase on Amazon:  A Kiss for Emily

A Kiss for Emily (Book One of the Emily Stokes Series) by J.P Galuska

Book Description

Emily Stokes never thought that falling in love would put her smack-dab in the middle of chaos. Or have her questioning her own sanity. When strange occurrences turn into the unbelievable, this romance may be more than she bargained for.

Book Review

Emily Stokes wants to be kissed, but she’s finding out that it just isn’t easy to find that special someone.

puckering up for a kiss

Emily is a typical teenager in Topeka, Kansas, finishing her junior year of high school. The story begins with her devastation over learning that her parents have decided to move the family to a rural area outside of Topeka.  Emily thinks her life has been “ruined”! Not only will she have to change schools to complete her senior year, she will leave behind her close girlfriends and her major crush, Alex Hibbs:

 “…when I look at Alex…I secretly desire a romantic kiss. Not just any old kiss, but one that makes you weak in the knees and defines true love. The all-important, all-encompassing kiss: that’s what I dreamed of. That’s what I wanted.” 

Emily thinks the upcoming prom is the perfect place to get that dazzling kiss. The only problem is Alex hasn’t asked yet, and time is running out.  She refuses to be the one to ask; otherwise, the kiss won’t be meaningful. However, the school year ends with Emily and a broken heart, but she is  ready to make the move and have a fresh start. heartbreak

The story is primarily told from Emily’s point of view, and the author does an excellent job of depicting the thoughts and actions of a teenage girl. At the beginning of the book, she is portrayed as an overly dramatic, self-centered, and insensitive to others. One of the primary examples of this is her treatment of Alex, even though she doesn’t know the extent of his pain and suffering from the traumatic events created by his family. At times, readers are given brief glimpses of Alex’s desperate thoughts, and I found it so heartbreaking that Emily refuses to have any type of relationship with him.

Itsover

I have to remember though, Alex has hurt her too, and she believes, in order to protect her heart, she can no longer have contact with him now that she has moved away: “Alex had been my Prince Charming, a knight in shining armor. Now he was simply the moldy cherry on a melted hot fudge sundae.” As the story progresses, readers watch as Alex’s life slowly disintegrates and are left wondering if the relationship between Emily and him is really over.

Now that her family has settled into their new house, Emily does her best to be optimistic about the change and to look for adventure. And, boy does she find it. While hiking in the woods, she takes a tumble that leaves a knot on the back of her head. She gets up, shakes it off, and continues on, until she spots a quaint, farmhouse out in the middle of a huge, open field.

country farmhouse

While taking in the beauty of the scene, she meets Sam Easley, property owner, and  “the most handsome boy I’d ever seen in my life.”

girl in shockShe is drawn to his old-fashioned and charming “country-boy” demeanor, and finds herself spending more time with him.  Has Emily finally found an opportunity for romance?

Sam appears to be the ideal guy for Emily, and she is enamored with him. He is the perfect gentleman around her, refusing to make any inappropriate moves toward Emily, even though she longs to kiss him.  However, Emily is quite perceptive and quickly realizes that not all is as it seems when she is around Sam. He isn’t anything like other young men that she knows.  Without giving too much away, I’ll just say that readers discover that Sam is in an unusual predicament, and, therefore, reluctant to tell Emily the truth about himself. His secrets create further conflict by making Emily wonder if, indeed, that bump on the head was more serious than she thought. Could she be delusional? Even her parents become concerned when they learn her knowledge of Sam and her visits to his house are  incongruent with what they’ve discovered about the history of the  Easley family.

old shack

Before Sam can reveal the truth to Emily, she is whisked away by her parents to be seen by a doctor, since everyone, including herself, thinks she’s hallucinating.

girl thinks she crazy

When a psychiatrist, more concerned about his career than his patients, declares that Emily is schizophrenic,thisgirlscrazy  her parents do everything they can to intervene, refusing to accept that their daughter is mentally ill. While Emily is being treated, readers get the parents’ point-of-views, which provide greater insight into their family dynamics and show the depth of their unwavering love and support of their daughter.  The plot unfolds as Emily tries to avoid confinement to a mental institution, and accept Sam for who he is.

Mystery, suspense, romance, and paranormal elements all combine to make this an enticing story. I also like the creative angle and detailed descriptions used to explain the paranormal entities.

ghost swirling

The ultimate question is whether Emily can love Sam with all of the restrictions and rules that constrain his behavior and actions. Will Emily finally get that kiss from Sam? The book’s ending leaves the reader wanting to know what will happen next.

Rating

Good-Read-icon

About  J.P Galuska

Mom's stuff 008

J P lives in Minnesota with her family, a crazy dog, and the world’s best cat.

The Emily Stokes Series Facebook | Author Facebook | Website | Twitter: @JGaluska

 

To leave a comment, click the small green link “Leave a comment” located at the end of this post after the listed book tags.