Saturday, April 13, 2013

The Harvesting Blog Tour: Review & Giveaway

"Thank You" to Julie at AToMR for being an awesome host and for giving me the opportunity to participate in this tour. Another "Thank You" to Melanie Karsak for providing a copy of The Harvesting for review. I am truly appreciative of being a part of The Harvesting Blog Tour.
*Make sure to check out the video with Melanie - the link is under Extras. Also, don't forget to enter the Giveaway for your very own ecopy of The Harvesting or a The Harvesting theme T-Shirt!!

The Harvesting
(The Harvesting, #1)
by Melanie Karsak
Publication Date: September 18, 2012
Age Group: New Adult
Genre: Horror and Fantasy, Zombie
Formats Available: eBook, Paperback ~386 pages
Tour organized by: AToMR Tours

Book Blurb: 
It's all fun and games until someone ends up undead.

Though Layla reluctantly returns home to rural Hamletville after a desperate call from her psychic grandmother, she could never have anticipated the horror of what Grandma Petrovich has foreseen. The residents of Hamletville will need Layla's help if they are to survive the zombie apocalypse that's upon them. But that is not the only problem. With mankind silenced, it soon becomes apparent that we were never alone. As the beings living on the fringe seek to reclaim power, Layla must find a way to protect the ones she loves or all humanity may be lost.

"To label this a zombie book would be a false pretense . . . this is so much more than that. What you start out with and what you end up with are very different, and those twists and turns in the middle will make your heart beat faster over and over again."-- Colossal Pop

"If you ever need to slice someone's head off, this is the blade you want..."

Layla is a museum curator who specializes in Medieval weaponry (how cool is that?!) who also teaches sword-play classes. She is in the middle of teaching one of her classes to a group of kids when she receives a very cryptic phone call from her Grandmother who tells her to come home. No explanations, nothing. So because Layla knows that her Grandmother would not call if it wasn't important, she gets in her car, cancels a date with a sexy German, and takes off to the little town she was raised in which does not hold such great memories...or people.

When she arrives, Grandma Petrovich gives her money and a list and tells her to go and run errands, still without any explanations which Layla knows not to argue with because Grandma knows things and is a seer or a witch or a medium, depending on who you are asking. When Layla finally gets home and talks to her Grandmother, she is still met with half answers and Layla is getting anxious - her Grandmother has an artillery that the NRA would covet! But all Grandma says is that her own Grandmother knew when she was to see the spirits and then drugs Layla. When she wakes up the next day, she also has the ability to see the spirits and is told by one to "Help them!"

Meanwhile, in the real world, there is an epidemic that is causing people to get sick with a flu like illness, but with a 100% mortality rate.The weird thing is that while all the people with the illness die, post mortem they still have some brain functions. And the first thing that happens after Layla sees a spirit is that she sees two people on her property that are bloody and seem to be dead, but are still upright and quick. After a quick lesson on how to kill these people - or zombies - she has to kill her own Grandmother who was bitten by one of the monsters and has turned herself. With her own set of artillery, swords, and a mission from the spirits, she goes into town to help the rest of the living population - even if Ian, her once lover, is there.

Layla is a natural leader and is probably the smartest and most courageous person in that town and becomes the de facto leader. I love Layla's character. She is strong and methodical and never acts rashly. Unlike some people who just run into a situation, she sits and waits and plans. Layla is the epitome of a female heroine: smart, intelligent, and kick-ass! I want to be like Layla, sword and all! She is able to rally together the townspeople and bring order to a chaotic apocalyptic situation. There is a bit of romance in the book too,but thankfully it does not overshadow the rest of the book. The team of Layla, Ian, and Jamie (Ian's brother) are a force to be reckoned with, and yet comical at the same time.

The plot is creative and action packed! The author Melanie Karsak brought together the paranormal, an account of a post-apocalyptic scenario, and fantasy elements to a story that is a completely powerful and gripping story. The world-building Ms. Karsak imagined and brought to life is vivid and gory and terrible (in an awesome way!) The scene with the Boy Scouts is one of my most favorite depictions of the dichotomy of survival and compassion that The Harvesting brings.This is not just a "Zombie" book, it is an epic tale told with impeccable writing skills and many storylines interwoven to shape a tale that twists and turns and brings you to a place you never thought you would be.

I am in genuine awe of Melanie Karsak and her prowess as an author and I can't even fathom what she will bring in book two. Full of suspense, captivating writing, endearing characters - even the ones that are not quite secondary characters, and a storyline that will keep you guessing, The Harvesting is a book that I would definitely recommend! In fact, I want to read it again because there is so much about The Harvesting to love!
Five brightly burning candles!!

FTC Advisory: I was given a copy of this book from the author for an honest review as part of a blog tour. No backroom deals or whispered promises were made.

From the author: I was interviewed on a local TV show, a Halloween special, about zombies. I am first up in the special and I talk about zombies in general and the novel in particular--and I have horrible posture and they made me wear my t-shirt--but this might be something nice for people to watch if they are interested in the paranormal.

Melanie Karsak, steampunk connoisseur, white elephant collector, and caffeine junkie, resides in Florida with her husband and two children. Melanie is the author of "The Harvesting" series. Visit the author at her blog,, to learn more about upcoming projects, book signings, and other neato things.

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(1) eBook of THE HARVESTING (International) 
(1) eBook or Print copy of THE HARVESTING and theme t-shirt (US/Canada)
a Rafflecopter giveaway

1 comment:

  1. Krista I had mad love for this book and am excited you enjoyed it too and that ending..eep, I cannot wait for book two!


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