Thursday, October 9, 2014

Blog Tour and Review: Apolonia, by Jamie McGuire

Author: Jamie McGuire
Age: NA
Genre: Sci-Fi Romance
Publisher: Jamie McGuire LLC (October 6, 2014)
Cover Design: Okay Creations, Sarah Hansen

“They killed me, but I survived.”

Three years after Rory Riordan foiled her own murder, she still trusts no one. Not Dr. Z, the eccentric college professor who has taken her under his wing, not Benji, the endearing, attractive classmate who insists on following her around, and certainly not Cy, the beautifully dark and mysterious boy who sits on the first row in Dr. Z’s Astrobiology class and asks far too many questions.

When Rory witnesses Cy being abducted by soldiers in the middle of the night, she finds herself submersed in a world that holds even more secrets than she could imagine--even darker secrets than her own.

From #1 New York Times Bestseller Jamie McGuire, experience the perfect combination of her bestselling books Providence & Beautiful Disaster. This New Adult Sci-Fi Romance is an action-packed, whiplash-inducing roller coaster ride. Page after page, this unpredictable, dark and sexy nail biter will keep readers guessing until the very end!

“Welcome!” Dr. Z began. “I am Dr. A. Byron Zorba, and you’ve arrived at Geobiology and Astrobiology . . . uh . . . with lab. That’s a separate class. Uh . . . later,” he added. “You should also be enrolled in the lab, separately from lecture. If not, see administration. So! Here, and in the partnering lab, you will study organic matter from microbes, rocks, and environmental samples. In lab, you’ll extract and, more importantly, interpret these samples. Beyond that, we will reconstruct ancient environments to understand how life evolved within the samples.”

“Yeesh,” Benji whispered.

“It’s really not that bad. Don’t be a baby,” I said, keeping my voice low as the professor went over the rules and syllabi.

“I’m still running in the mornings,” Benji said. “You should come with me sometime.”

“I don’t run.”

“It’s good for you. You should try it.”

“I’m not getting up at the crack of dawn to run until I stop freezing. That’s not healthy. It’s stupid.”

Benji just smiled, clearly amused.

“Excuse me, professor,” Cyrus said, holding his pen in the air. “Whom shall I contact . . .?”

I blocked out the rest of his question. The trace of a British accent in his voice and his perfect grammar would have never piqued my attention before, but on that day it was annoying and snooty.
Not only was Cyrus tall, dark, and handsome but, as class progressed, he also proved to be Dr. Z’s most adept and eager student.

“That would be Dr. Rosen,” Dr. Z said. “May I ask . . . from where do you hail?”

“Excuse me?” Cyrus responded.

“I was curious to know if you happen to be Egyptian?” the professor asked.

I don’t know what expression was on Cyrus’s face, but he must have smiled, because Dr. Z clapped his hands once, and a wide grin made his already full cheeks puff out.

Dr. Z patted Cy’s shoulder and shook his finger a few times. “We’ll have much to talk about. See me after class.”

“Oh, Christ, get a room,” I snarled under my breath.

The professor’s hobby was trying his hardest to be an Egyptian scholar. I thought maybe Cyrus’s origin was the reason for Dr. Z’s fascination, but that didn’t turn out to be it at all. Cyrus never answered the questions that Dr. Z presented to the class, but he asked at least a dozen of his own. He was curious, and I couldn’t deny that his questions were a work of art.

Dr. Z answered a few questions before lecturing for just ten minutes, giving us a reading assignment, and then waving us away, twenty minutes earlier than expected.

Everyone looked around, unsure what to do until I began packing my things. That started a chain reaction, and noise filled the room as students crammed their laptops into their bags and moved to leave.

After our dismissal, Cyrus stood next to Dr. Z’s podium, and they spoke in low voices with a lot of nodding and a few smiles. Oh, hell no. I stood up, grabbed my bag, and walked down the steps, standing in the space next to Cyrus.

“Cyrus has just returned from a summer in Mali,” Dr. Z said, smiling.

“Oh?” I said, with cold eyes. “You have family there?”

“No,” Cyrus said flatly. He didn’t offer further explanation, so I stared at him until he became uncomfortable and looked away. That was my very favorite thing to do to everyone.

“Cyrus is researching the Dogon tribe. Very interesting,” Dr. Z said. “He’s the third member of our team.”

“What?” I said the word louder than I’d meant and high enough to be embarrassing.

Cyrus nodded once to us both, and then he was gone.

“Are you replacing me?” I asked, my heart pounding. My assistant job was connected to my scholarship. If Cyrus stole it from me, I could be in real danger of losing that money. It was too late to find a student position that wasn’t already taken.

“Of course not. You saw the data I sent. You’ll never have time for anything else if I don’t add someone to the team.”

“I can do it,” I said, only feeling a tiny bit relieved. “You know I don’t go home for the holidays. I don’t mind working weekends.”

Dr. Z smiled. “Rory, I know you don’t mind working weekends, but you should.”

He walked out of the classroom, leaving me among his weird sculptures and artifacts. None of it made sense. Dr. Z had always been careful. I couldn’t imagine he would invite someone he didn’t trust into his precious laboratory. Something about Cyrus felt off, but he didn’t seem dangerous or untrustworthy. If the professor had been considering Cyrus as just a third team member, he would have mentioned it before today. The only explanation for my exclusion from this news was that he was planning to replace me. What’s more, hastily inviting a new student into his lab wasn’t just uncharacteristic; it was troubling.

My eyes were all over the place, looking at a different inanimate object with every thought. I couldn’t lose my position as Dr. Zorba’s assistant. Everything was riding on it.

The room grew darker, bringing my attention to the large windows. The clouds outside were gray. At this time of year, the weather was more likely to bring in a cold front than a storm. The wind began to blow the few leaves that had just started to fall from the huge oak trees. I pulled one of several tubes of lip balm from my jacket pocket and ran it over my lips. I loved winter up until the night I died. Now it just seemed ominous.

Clenching my teeth with determination, I lifted my bag and swung it over my shoulder. I refused to lose my assistant position with Dr. Z. Cyrus could take his thought-provoking, eloquently worded questions and shove them up his ass.


Rate:  3.75 of 5 stars

In case you live under a rock and haven't been to our blog before and read any reviews previously, I love paranormal/sci-fi fiction books.  So when I heard that Jamie McGuire had a new science fiction book releasing I was so excited!  I have read all of her previous books and absolutely loved the Providence series.  It was amazing!  The synopsis of Apolonia sucked me in immediately and when I received an invite for the blog tour I was so excited!

Apolonia begins with Rory Riordian as the main female character.  To say she has issues is an understatement.  I loved her character overall.  She is a total out of the box person.  She has created this tough exterior to keep everyone out of her life to avoid getting hurt.  But can't seem to see that as a problem.  Benji is a swoon worthy male lead character as well.  I feel so bad for him at times following her around like a little lost puppy, but something was off about him as well.  I can't say that he is perfect, but thats what makes it interesting.  The other male lead is Cyrus, an exchange student from Egypt.  He is mysterious and Rory is drawn to him for some unexplainable reason.  I am not gonna lie, I really loved his personality.  He kept me interested when some other things didn't.

I don't want to reveal a lot about the books plot, because that is part of the fun of reading a great story.  Suffice it to say if you love anything different and paranormal this book will probably be right up your alley.  I did have a couple of issues with the story that I would change/tweak.  For one, I felt like the details bogged down the story somewhat.  I know it is necessary, especially describing new things to readers that are invented by the author, but I got a little lost in the details at times.  I also felt like the beginning was a little confusing, but I did quickly figure out what was happening.  I also was a little disappointed in the ending.  I thought it was a little abrupt and could have had an epilogue leading to a sequel or to give more closure on some things.

Overall though, it was a great book that kept my attention and kept me on my toes.  I have no doubt that it will be a huge success and I could for sure see this book as a movie in my mind.  I think it would be portrayed really well.  Hopefully there will be a sequel that will give me some more insight into the story and the future for the characters.  As for Apolonia, I kept wondering why that title, and when it hits, I was like Whoa, What?   Kudos to Jamie McGuire for going outside of her comfort zone and following her heart on this book  Job well done!

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About Author Jamie McGuire
Jamie McGuire was born in Tulsa, OK. She attended the Northern Oklahoma College, the University of Central Oklahoma, and Autry Technology Center where she graduated with a degree in Radiography.

Jamie paved the way for the New Adult genre with international bestseller, Beautiful Disaster. Her follow-up novel Walking Disaster debuted at #1 on the New York TimesUSA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestseller lists. She has also written apocalyptic thriller Red Hill, a novella titled A Beautiful Wedding, and the Providence series, a young adult paranormal romance trilogy.

Jamie lives on a ranch just outside Enid, OK with husband Jeff and their three children. They share their 30 acres with cattle, six horses, three dogs, and Rooster the cat.

Find Jamie at or on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

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