May 17, 2013

Book Review and GIVEAWAY!: Skin Deep by T.G. Ayer




Title: Skin Deep (DarkWorld #1)
Author: T.G. Ayer
Release Date: April 30th 2013
Publisher: Self published
Source: Received from the author for an honest review (I have since purchased a paperback copy!)

Panther Shape-shifter Kailin Odel just wants to be normal. Leaving her clan, and her Alpha responsibilities, to live with her grandmother in Chicago had been the best thing for her. Only then did she discover her ability to track and kill the soul sucking undead creatures called Wraiths. Now she protected the humans, and had something to be proud of.
But, when she discovers the body of a murdered shape shifter, Kailin has to come to terms with the reality that her own kind are just as vulnerable as the humans.
The closer Kailin gets to the killer the more she has to face the intricacies of her people. When the time comes can she accept who and what her real purpose is?
 


Excerpt
Icy pain sliced through my bones, the muscles of my arms, and the flesh of my back. My spine and thighs rippled, shifted. Changing.
Damn. Too fast.

I spared a rueful glance at my new leather pants. And ran faster.
Had to make it to the Rehab Center a few blocks away. I ran, my speed super-human, my need super-charged, covering ground fast enough to make it to safety before my Panther took over. 

I took the corner of the street behind the Center at breakneck speed, and headed for the nearest of the gaping holes pockmarking the rusted fence.
The wind changed before I stepped off the curb. My ears peaked and I skidded to a halt, panting slightly, my backpack thumping against my side. The scream of tires on blacktop echoed on the night air, shattering the silence as it grew ever louder.
Closer.
Followed in tandem by the whining wail of sirens. A battered sedan scorched down the street, suspended on the turn on only two wheels. The angry whip of charred rubber spiked the air. Horizontal again, the car jumped the curb and skidded sideways, avoiding a collision with the fence by mere inches.
I shrank into the shadows at my back, expelling a long, stale breath. My Panther, still confined within my body, bucked and jerked, craving release.
I let her surface.
A little.
For now, super-sight would be welcome. Unlike the ability to run like the wind while still in my Human skin, tapping into my Panther's sight required a partial transformation—a risk I needed to take as my gut screamed danger.
Adrenalin surged, different again from the calm fervor of my wraith hunts. I blinked. Heat nipped at my corneas as I released my Panther sight—enough to give my eyes feline vision.
Sight, which sliced deep into the black nothing hugging the sidewalk, transformed my eyes into a solid Panther emerald. For the moment, plain old Kailin Odel was back to being Kailin of the Clan Panthera.
My cat sight adjusted, focused. The blackness surrounding the darkened vehicle changed depth and color, became lighter, clearer.
Someone shoved the rear door open, and I cringed as it creaked and complained. The occupants remained shrouded in the shadows of the vehicle's interior. Something large, long and heavy hit the ground with a dull thunk. Then the sedan revved as unseen sirens drew closer, louder, and it spun around and skidded off the curb.
The battered car roared off, a police cruiser close on its tail with sirens screaming blue murder. It didn't take a genius to figure out the parcel had to be awfully incriminating, for them to chuck it into the garden in such a flaming hurry.
My nostrils twitched at the stench of exhaust smoke, and my heart thumped as I waited to cross the street. I flicked a furtive glance at the dull red glow of taillights disappearing into the darkness. A breeze skimmed the sidewalk, ruffling my hair, and I hurried across the street as the sounds of sirens faded in the distance. I paused a few meters from the bundle, released my Panther's nose and sniffed. Whatever I'd expected to scent on the air, it wasn't the tang of copper drifting toward me—strong, rich and intoxicating.
Blood. Fresh blood. A luscious odor, laced with tendrils of the familiar.
I moved closer, my mind warring with my emotions. This was no bundle of rags, or some stolen junk those thugs had thrown away, but a living being. The blood surely meant the person now lying on the sidewalk needed medical attention.
I stood over the bundle, the cloying odor of the blood filling my nostrils, and hesitated in a moment of doubt and fear.
Now or never.
I took a deep breath and crouched beside the silent form. My hand quivered as I reached out and touched the scratchy, ragged fabric covering the shoulder of the silent figure. At first it resisted my tug, stiff against my touch, but one more gentle urging turned him toward me.
I gasped, my throat closing on the sound. My heel caught as I pulled away, and I staggered backward as hot horror burned through my veins. The face glistened, bloody and mangled. Raw muscles and ligaments lay exposed, bare. A low moan of horror echoed around me. Chills streaked up my spine when I realized the stricken sound had originated from my own throat. The familiar richness of him clouded my mind, clogging my throat and drugging my senses.
A Skinwalker.
My throat spasmed, silencing a shriek as he stared at me. His breath whispered—shallow, irregular, the sound ragged as he labored in his final moments. He gripped with desperation to the disappearing threads which held him to this mortal earth.
His face held my gaze, and somewhere behind ribs of ice my heart clenched, threatening to implode. My own face stared back at me, reflected from within eyes as blue as oceans. Eyes filled with excruciating pain and desperate fear. He didn't speak, just studied me for a few moments with those glorious eyes.
Recognition. Gratitude. Relief.
Then... release.
Life flickered and sputtered out of his beautiful eyes—eyes unable to close even after his soul departed his mortal body. Eyes stark and ghastly within a face flayed of every inch of its skin.
Mere seconds had passed, although I would have sworn it had been hours. Screeching tires again interrupted my horror, and the sedan skidded beside me before I could do much more than scramble away from the body. The killers had managed to lose the cops, and now they'd returned to retrieve the body.
They hadn't bargained on having a witness.
The cold-cocking of guns set my body on fire.
It also did something worse. With mortal fear gripping me, my imminent Change refused to take second place anymore. My body churned the fear and my Panther grasped at the visceral power of the adrenalin in my veins.
I ran.
A gunshot echoed around the garden, the sound ping-ponging off the aging brick walls of the surrounding apartment buildings.
I gasped as a blast of searing pain slammed into me, as a bullet buried itself deep within my shoulder.


My Thoughts


T.G. Ayer has once again sucked me in to one of her magical worlds.
A world where panther shape-shifter Kailin Odel, does her best to protect her community from soul sucking Wraiths; a world where shape-shifters, mage’s, and all manner of old and new paranormal beings live amongst us in relative secrecy. But someone is killing shifters, decimating the bodies and drawing attention to a world the Para’s want to keep secret; need to keep hidden from the regular population.

Tee has a talent for writing intelligent, kickass heroines and Kailin is all that and more. Kailin Odel is a fighter; a strong and independent young woman who refuses to sit back and let people be taken advantage of. She has a deep and unyielding belief in the good of people, and does all that she can to advice and protect those she cares about.

Logan Westin is a cop; one of the youngest cops paroling the streets and a member of Omega - the secret division within the police force that investigates all things... strange.

Drawn together after the death of a shifter, Kailin and Logan try to navigate their way through a frustrating and emotionally draining case, fraught with danger and an ever increasing attraction they both try to deny.
 

Great world building, great characters to both love and hate (love a good badass too!), and a fantastic story full of all things paranormal, magick, and more. Skin Deep hooked from the very first page, and promises to deliver an intense and exciting trilogy. I love T.G. Ayer’s voice and feel the emotion of her characters on every page. I really can’t wait to see what comes next for Kailin and Logan, and their merry band of sidekicks!

A new and exciting paranormal world of adventure, magick and mayhem, Skin Deep has gone straight to my keeper shelf!
5 stars ~<;]


                               ````````````````````````````
Author, T.G. Ayer

I have been a writer from the time I was old enough to recognise that reading was a doorway into my imagination. Poetry was my first foray into the art of the written word. Books were my best friends, my escape, my haven. I am essentially a recluse but this part of my personality is impossible to practise given I have two teenage daughters, who are actually my friends, my tea-makers, my confidantes... I am blessed with a husband who has left me for golf. It's a fair trade as I have left him for writing. We are both passionate supporters of each others loves - it works wonderfully...

My heart is currently broken in two. One half resides in South Africa where my old roots still remain, and my heart still longs for the endless beaches and the smell of moist soil after a summer downpour. My love for Ma Afrika will never fade. The other half of me has been transplanted to the Land of the Long White Cloud. The land of the Taniwha, beautiful Maraes, and volcanoes. The land of green, pure beauty that truly inspires. And because I am so torn between these two lands - I shall forever remain crosseyed.


And now for the giveaway!
I have enjoyed this book so much, that when I bought my copy, I grabbed an extra copy to give to one of my followers - and it comes with a signed bookmark, signed postcard, AND an awesome panther necklace!!

(Giveaway is open internationally - I will post anywhere!!)
 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

37 comments:

  1. I want!!!!! Pretty please tell me it's open to international entries i really want this books! ( and teh signed bookmarls would be great for my collection, the necklace is just superb!)

    Please!!

    thank you for this FABULOUS giveaway!

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  2. YES miki!!
    Giveaway is open internationally!!

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  3. i'm going either wolf or big cat if i could shift. i used to be a die-hard vamp girl, then i discovered what i affectionately call "shifter-crack", and my god, i'm hooked.
    thanks so much for the review and the contest/giveaway :)
    on my tbr list for sure. :)

    patricia crews
    adamsgirl4602@yahoo.com

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  4. Wow, this sounds like a great book. And I have to say that I love the necklace also. Thanks for the wonderful giveaway! So if I was a shape shifter I think I would probably be a wolf. Maybe a big black timber wolf.

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  5. If I was a shape shifter I would want to be a wolf. A white sliver wolf. ;) Thanks for the giveaway!! :D

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  6. I think I would like to be a wolf or a jaguar. They are both such beautiful animals.

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  8. Thanks for the giveaway! Adding it to my TBR list.As for what kind of shapeshifter I'd like to be. My answer is a dragon :)

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  9. I'm a big Tee fan and she's part of my writing group here in NZ. This book is fabulous and I can't wait to find some time to read it. Tee - you're an inspiration given the personal issues you faced while writing this. I'm, as always, in awe of you and your wonderful story-telling abilities. Bravo!

    I'd like to be a black panther if I could shape shift.

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  10. I would be a pampered cat that could lie around all day getting my belly rubbed :0)

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  11. I would love to be a weretiger, I think they would be beautiful and powerful.

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  12. If I could be a shifter I'd be a mere cat, because they are small and can get into places bigger shifters couldn't plus don't corner one or you might be sorry!:P

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  13. I would love to shape shift in to a dragon!

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  14. What a great giveaway. I have a bit in common with you and I am happy to have found your blog.:)

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  15. Oh I would love to be a shape shifting horse. I love them!

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  16. I'd be an owl if I chose a bird form; a white tiger if I were a mammal!

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  17. THANK YOU!!!!!
    i need to stop jumping from joy because my blood^pressure isn't happy with that but thank you so so much for this opportunity to win thank you!

    I would like to shift in a wolf because i admire them but for practicability^^ a wild cat would be best for where i live ( and still^^;;), if birds are possible a falcon

    really thank you

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  18. I would like to shift in a Lion.

    Great cover and very beautiful story, thank you for the giveaway!
    Raffle name: Artemis

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  19. As a matter of fact, panther is my fave animal, so my answer can only be pretty inherent to the book! :P

    Thanks for the gorgeous giveaway!

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  20. Hello :)

    Okay, keeping things short is not my strong point. Sorry, but I SO LOVE this question!! It is usually, without question, an easy one to answer. However, as things have evolved in my Life to many different circumstances so have my thoughts on this. I ALWAYS wish to be an Eagle. Graceful, Strong, Beautiful, Courageous, The one, who during a storm doesn't hide, rather soars 'above' the clouds. THAT is my biggest wish ever for a day how Beautiful and free that would feel. With that said, I also have a profoundly deep love for the Black Panther. Absolutely stunning, fast, powerful and one I'd Love to be more so than any other I could possibly Dream of being alongside the Eagle. One soaring in the sky and observing the Earth's Beauty from High above! The other running free and feeling the Beauty of the Earth at its feet in all its pureness of nature.

    That may sound contradictory, however they both just captured my Heart many, many, many lol, years ago and they will ALWAYS be the two I'd wish to be forever.

    Thank you very much for this opportunity and to an awesome friend who enlightened me to your Beautiful site!! I don't want to name drop, but she knows and I deeply appreciate such a Beautiful find in your site and this book!! TYSD xoxo

    ~*Good Luck*~ to all and ~*Congratulations*~ to you for a successful and awesome blog!!

    ~*One Love & In Wellness*~

    Melissa xoxo

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  21. I would be a were-leopard!!! Like my favorite book character Nathaniel from the Anita Blake Vampire Hunter series!! :)

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  22. I would choose to be an eagle shape shifter so I could see it all from the air and feel free as I flew!aCh

    Barrie

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  23. I would be a cat of some sort for sure. Thank You for the awesome giveaway I love shifter books and I am keeping my fingers crossed for this win

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  24. If I could be a 'shape-shifter', I would be a cougar..

    Thank you for having this awesome giveaway!! Gosh, I'm dying to have that signed copy..

    **swoon**

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  25. If I could be a shape shifter Id be a Jaguer !

    greatgiveway

    kat

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  26. Id be something that could fly!!

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  27. I think a dragon would be cool!!

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  28. Thank you for having this awesome giveaway!!! Love the cover :)

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  29. Ohhhh I think a Panther, my partner said he would be a were-shark

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  30. Anna Granberg5/24/13, 3:58 AM

    I would be a snow leopard.
    Thanks for the giveaway!:)

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  31. This sounds like such a good book!

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  32. sounds like s really good book

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  33. I'd be a Dragon or a Wolf. Dragon just because I love them and Wolf because they are such loyal and family oriented animals.

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  34. I would be a panther or something that could fly.

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  35. I would soooo totally be a dragon. Oh yeah.

    Thanks for the giveaway, this is great! I love TG!

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  36. Ooh i would so be a dragon :) you can fly, breath fire,:) Awesome book T.G :)

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I'd love to hear your thoughts, so please don't hesitate to leave a comment :)

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