Thursday, July 31, 2014

My SDCC 2014 Experience: Shonen Jump: Naruto Panel

Shonen Jump: Naruto Panel
July 24, 2014
10:00 AM - 11:30 AM
Room 8

Signed by Junko Takeushi!

If you hadn't already read it/viewed it/either one online or were physically there, San Diego Comic Con hosted a VIZ media panel just for Naruto! It was the first panel of my Comic-Con 2014 experience. The information we can find online makes us impassive to the new Naruto products coming out throughout the year because it's like, "Oh, I already know," but actually attending and seeing things first hand makes things more exciting. Speakers varied from the official English translators of the Naruto manga (I couldn't get their names, I was too far back), to sculptor/painter of the Naruto figurines Shin Tanabe and Katsushige Akeyama, the producer of the Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja video games Daisuke Komoto, and special guest Junko Takeuchi, the seiyuu of "Naruto Uzumaki."

The room was packed, every seat filled, so much that fans had to stand against the walls. I came in groggy and tired yet listening the whole time. In order of events, our lovely guest Junko first answered questions about being a voice actress/seiyuu, how she got the role voicing our #1 hyperactive knucklehead ninja, and on occasion played around with bits and phrases. She also did a signing for a Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm Revolution poster later the same day. Up next is Shin Tanabe and Kasushi Akeyama, who showed us the process they go through of creating collectible figurines, not the cheap knock offs you find at independent little shops or swap meets; like this one where Gaara had brown hair and was missing the kanji on his forehead or Kakashi's hair is sticking straight up, "WTF is this?" I mean legit detail that would be worth the $150 (I'm not a collector but for those of you out there who wanted to know, there you go.); their featured item was a Naruto where one can customize poses and another wearing his father's Hokage coat. Speaking of which, fans were able to win Blu-rays, DVDs,figures, or shirts by answering simple trivia questions. So simple! That even anyone new to Naruto and Naruto Shippuden would have known the answer to these trivia questions. How many can you answer? [Answers are located at the bottom of this entry.]

Trivia Questions during panel
1) What is Naruto's favorite food?

2) Who undid the seal Orochimaru place on Minato's "Eight Trigrams Sealing Style" (that seal on Naruto's stomach, in lay man's terms or just in case you didn't know) dring the Chunin exams?

3) What animal does Naruto and Jiraiya summon?

4) Is Naruto the #1 selling manga in the U.S.?

And introducing the new Naruto Deck Builder game; new to me I haven't read about it, have you? It sounded straightforward yet complicated at the same time when they were explaining it. You start off with 7-10 cards then collect/buy from a pool in the centoer of 4-6 players, and each side of the card is labeled; I thought it might be interesting to learn and the cards look way too rudimentary. Special preview card for panel attendees; Minato Namikaze!!! Collect them all? Over 200 cards.

Also, in select theaters, coming this August is the English dub version of the movie Road to Ninja: Naruto movie 6. The Naruto movie I care about the most since it hits close to the heart; seeing it as Naruto's growth over the years since the first airing of his show on Cartoon Network's Toonami as an annoying brat in 2005. Come and see your favorite Knoha ninjain English with flipped personalities, or my favorite part the Akatsuki but then again do whatever you want if you give now f**ks for the dub, and support the movie. Tickets are on sale now at

Now, m favorite part, Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm Revolution. What don't you already know? Special samurai DLC for wen you pre-order, mech Naruto designed by Kishimoto-sensei himself, creation of the Akatsuki storyline, 100 plus playable characters, and a mecha Naruto poster from Gamestop when you pre-order? Oh, you do know? Then should I stop here? Well, the trailer was amazing: tournament battles, customizable/unlockable accessories outfit, but my favorite was learning about Itachi... and his Sunny Side Battle... For Lord Jashin's sake Itachi; if you're going to cook with an apron on, at least take off the Akatsuki cloak, geez! Don't you sweat (Amatearus aside)!? I told myself I wouldn't buy another game unless I actually had the time to play but I can't resist this one. (Someone clear my schedule!!! (°□°)╯ ┻━┻) And at the end of the video game trailer, a lucky audience member was allowed to play against producer Daiske Komoto for another wonderful prize. I left the panel more eager to be a Naruto fan than I have in 5 years.

Answers to above questions:
1) Ichiraku Ramen (and red bean soup but on one said that)

2) Jiraiya

3) Toads

4) Yes (Funny how in Japan it's One Piece; last time I checked.)

Pretty cool cosplay while we were waiting in line!

Junko Takeuchi, the voice of Naruto!

Producer of the Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja video games
Daisuke Komoto

Shin Tanabe, sculptor of the Naruto figurines!

Junko Takeuchi signs for Naruto fans at the VIZmedia booth!
View the full SDCC 2014 Day 1 album, here!

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

JASMINE's THOUGHTS on Lucy (2014)

Science Fiction, Action, Suspense/Thriller
Release Date:
July 25, 2014
Run Time:
1 hour, 28 minutes
Distributed by:
Universal Pictures

Directed/Written by:
Luc Besson

Plot Synopsis:
From La Femme Nikita and The Professional to The Fifth Element, writer/director Luc Besson has created some of the toughest, most memorable female action heroes in cinematic history.  Now, Besson directs Scarlett Johansson in Lucy, an action-thriller that tracks a woman accidentally caught in a dark deal who turns the tables on her captors and transforms into a merciless warrior evolved beyond human logic.

Scarlett Johansson as Lucy
Morgan Freeman as Professor Norman
Amr Waked as Capt. Pierre Del Rio
Min-sik Choi as Mr. Jang
Analeigh Tipton as Caroline
Julian Rhind-Tutt as The Limey

Find the full cast & crew on IMDB.

**My Thoughts**
I was pretty curious about this movie after watching the trailer. The concept of what a human being is capable of if he or she reaches 100% use of their brain does make one think. Although it is fiction, this film does push the boundaries of "what if". This film begs the audience to think and wonder the possibilities if it happens.

Scarlett Johansson portrayed Lucy wonderfully, she was very convincing as Lucy as she changed with each increase of her brain's capacity. I also enjoyed the nature clips during Professor Norman's (Morgan Freeman) lecture which added to the concept/plot of the film. With a balance of action, science fiction, and humor, Lucy was enjoyable to watch...and, it made me think of the possibilities. However, I thought it was short and rushed. I felt that the characters needed to be more developed. The effects were amazing, yet not over-the-top.

Like I said, it is science fiction. Lucy should be watched with an open mind, open to different ideas and possibilities. Although Lucy does have its shortcomings, it is a film that proves to be thought-provoking and captivating to the watchers' eyes. Plus, the cinematography was well done.

My rating:

BLOG TOUR: Throttled by Chelle Bliss


Welcome to the Official Blog Tour for Throttled, a Men of Inked Novella, by Chelle Bliss! This is City & Suzy's story!

New Adult/Adult Contemporary Romance
Men of Inked Series
Publish Date:
July 28, 2014

She's about to become his - Mrs. Joseph Gallo.

All she wants is to be his, but his possessiveness days before the wedding has her questioning the reality of a happily ever after.

He's not easy. He's territorial and doesn't share well with others.

City's staking his claim, making Suzy his forever.

Their future teeters precariously on the cliff of matrimonial bliss.

Will their love survive his alpha nature or will it all unravel before she can say 'I do'?


Enter the Goodreads Giveaway for a chance to win a signed paperback copy of Throttled!


The Men of Inked Series




**About the Author**
Chelle Bliss has dedicated her life to education. She has been a teacher for over ten years and holds a Master of Education degree. Teaching has given her a creative outlet, but she yearned for something more. Writing has given her that, no longer about just creativity, it became a journey.

Chelle is an avid reader; consuming contemporary romance, dark reads, young adult, and all things erotica. Chelle wanted to create a book filled with characters that readers could relate to with real world problems and matching wallets.

Chelle loves to travel and her favorite cities are New Orleans and Paris. She currently lives in Florida with her amazing boyfriend. He's showed her the love and passion that she has poured onto the page.

Stay connected with Chelle Bliss

Sign-up for the newest release information via text:
Text Alpha to 727-493-5129



Books by Chelle Bliss


***The Giveaway***


Tuesday, July 29, 2014

BLOG TOUR: Teaching Roman by Gennifer Albin

Welcome to the Official Blog Tour for Teaching Roman, book 2 of the Good Girls Don't series, by Gennifer Albin!

New Adult Contemporary Romance
Good Girls Don't Series
Publish Date:
June 30, 2014

Jessica Stone has her life in perfect order until her perfectly boring boyfriend Brett puts things in perspective. So when she receives a call to action from her heartbroken best friend Cassie, she ditches her plans for Winter Break in gloomy Olympic Falls and sets off to Mexico for some fun in the sun.

Determined to use her oceanview to prep for her MCATS, she doesn't plan to run into anyone from Olympic State, least of all the cute communications prof she's been crushing on for a year. When he unexpectedly saves the day, the two are thrown together in a distinctly extracurricular activity.

Roman Markson doesn’t expect to run into anyone he knows from Olympic Falls while visiting his family in Puerto Vallarta, especially not a former student. Although Jess Stone has a way of catching men’s attention, a relationship with her is strictly off-limits. However, the rules feel less strict in Mexico, so they agree to a plan: one week in paradise and nothing more.

But avoiding each other back on campus is harder than they anticipated, especially when they can’t stay away from one another. Neither is sure what they have to learn—and lose—before life teaches them a lesson they’ll never forget.



You want a drink or something?I offered. I knew exactly what I needed to do. Get her comfortable. Calm her down. Distract her. Then discuss options. I called it my chill pill list. It was a bad habit of mine to fall back on my bedside manner when one of my girls was freaking out.
I would like a baseball bat or some pepper spray.Cassie  off a list that grew scarier with each item. She ended on one of those giant medieval devices with the spikes that you shut assholes up in.
Im not sure we have an iron maiden,Jillian said, a note of apology in her voice. She patted the couch in an effort to get Cassie to sit down, but Cassie kept up her manic pacing. The whole room was filled with the frenzied energy of a woman scorned. Normally Cassie was totally put together, but right now her black hair was pulled into a messy pony tail and her clothes were wrinkled.
Youre going to be a doctor.She pointed at me, and I shrank back against the couch cushion. What do they use to castrate assholes?
I shook my head. Um, we generally dont do that, even to assholes.
Knives,Jillian spoke up and I shot her a look. Whatever was going on, arming Cassie seemed like a bad idea.
Good. You have knives, right?
Noooooo,Jillian answered, looking to the kitchen.
I made up my mind to tackle Cassie if she took one step toward the kitchen cabinets.


**About the Author**
Gennifer Albin holds a Masters degree in English Literature from the University of Missouri. A recovering academic, she turned to writing her own books.  In her free time she sits on the National Novel Writing Month Advisory Board, laughs (and cries) with her mom writers group, and watches too much Doctor Who (if that's possible). Gennifer lives in Poulsbo Washington with her family.

Gennifer's debut novel, Crewel, was written during NaNo ’10 and I now sit on the official National Novel Writing Month Advisory Board.  She is represented by Mollie Glick of Foundry Literary + Media.

Stay connected with Gennifer Albin

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RELEASE DAY BLITZ: Before You by Amber Hart


We're so excited to celebrate the release of Before You by Amber Hart from Kensington Teen! This multicultural romance has us swooning!

New Adult Contemporary Romance
Before & After Series
Publish Date:
July 29, 2014
Kensington Teen

Some say love is deadly. Some say love is beautiful. I say it is both.

Faith Watters spent her junior year traveling the world, studying in exquisite places, before returning to Oviedo High School. From the outside her life is picture-perfect. Captain of the dance team. Popular. Happy. Too bad it’s all a lie.

It will haunt me. It will claim me. It will shatter me. And I don't care.

Eighteen-year-old Diego Alvarez hates his new life in the States, but staying in Cuba is not an option. Covered in tattoos and scars, Diego doesn't stand a chance of fitting in. Nor does he want to. His only concern is staying hidden from his past—a past, which if it were to surface, would cost him everything. Including his life.

At Oviedo High School, it seems that Faith Watters and Diego Alvarez do not belong together. But fate is as tricky as it is lovely. Freedom with no restraint is what they long for. What they get is something different entirely.

Love—it will ruin you and save you, both.



“Hi, I’m Faith Watters.”
Those are the first words I speak to the new Cuban guy in the front office. He grimaces. He’ll be a tough one. I can handle it, though. He’s not the first.
I can’t help but notice that he looks a lot like a model from the neck up—eyes the color of oak, strong bone structure. Everywhere else, he looks a lot like a criminal. Chiseled, scarred body … I wonder for a second about the meaning behind the tattoos scratched into his arms.
One thing’s clear. He’s dangerous.
And he’s beautiful.
“I’ll show you to your classes,” I announce.
I’m one of the peer helpers at our school. It’s not my favorite thing to do, but it counts as a class. Basically I spend the first two days with new students, introducing them around and answering their questions. Some parents with kids new to the school voluntarily sign their students up, but it’s only mandatory for the international students, of which we have a lot. Mostly Latinos.
This Cuban guy towers over me. I’m five six. Not tall. Not short. Just average. Average is good.
This guy’s not average. Not even a little bit. He must be over six feet.
I glance up at him, kind of like I do when I’m searching for the moon in a sea of darkness.
“Looks like you have math first. I’ll walk you there,” I offer.
“No thanks, chica. I can handle it.”
“It’s no problem,” I say, leading the way.
He tries to snatch his schedule from my hands, but I move too fast.
“Why don’t we start with your name?” I suggest.
I already know his name. Plus some. Diego Alvarez. Eighteen years old. Moved from Cuba two weeks ago. Only child. No previous school records. I read it in his bio. I want to hear him say it.
“You got some kinda control issues or somethin’?” he asks harshly, voice slightly accented.
“You got some kind of social issues or somethin’?” I fire back, holding my stance. I won’t let him intimidate me, though I’ll admit, he’s hot. Too bad he has a nasty attitude.
The side of his lip twitches. “No. I just don’t mix with your type,” he answers.
“My type?”
“That’s what I said.”
“You don’t even know my type.” No one does. Well, except Melissa.
He chuckles humorlessly. “Sure I do. Head cheerleader? Date the football player? Daddy’s little girl who gets everything she wants?” He leans closer to whisper. “Probably a virgin.”
My cheeks burn hot. “I’m not a cheerleader,” I say through clamped teeth.
“Whatever,” he says. “Are you gonna give me my schedule or not?”
“Not,” I answer. “But you can feel free to follow me to your first class.”
He steps in front of me, intimately close. “Listen, chica, nobody tells me what to do.”
I shrug. “Fine, suit yourself. It’s your life. But if you want to attend this school, it’s mandatory for me to show you to your classes for two days.”
His eyes narrow. “Who says I want to attend this school?”
I take the last step toward him, closing the gap between us. When we were little, Melissa and I used to collect glass bottles. Whenever we accumulated twenty, we’d break them on the concrete. When the glass shattered, the slivered pieces made a breathtaking prism of light.

I cut myself on the glass by accident once. It was painful, but worth it. The beauty was worth it. It’s funny how the bottle was never as beautiful as when it was broken.


**About the Author**
Amber Hart grew up in Orlando, Florida and Atlanta, Georgia. She now resides on the Florida coastline with family and animals including, but not limited to, bulldogs, a cat, and dragons. When unable to find a book, she can be found writing, daydreaming, or with her toes in the sand. She's the author of Before YouAfter UsEchoes, and Echoes' sequel (untitled as of yet).

Represented by Beth Miller of Writers House.

Stay connected with Amber Hart

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