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April 11, 2013

Review of Crossroads by J.J. Bonds with Interview and G!veaway

Crossroads

When Katia enrolled at Crossroads Academy she knew things weren’t exactly going to be easy. The sole heir to the worlds’ most powerful vampire, her presence was bound to cause a stir. But nothing could have prepared her for this. Whispers follow everywhere she goes. So does trouble.
Bodies start turning up in nearby Rutland and Katia is sucked into a twisted web of danger and deceit. Haunted by nightmares she can’t explain and a thirst for blood that is never sated, Katia will do whatever it takes to keep her past buried.
Nothing at Crossroads is what it seems and Katia’s secrets may be the darkest of them all.

add to goodreadsCrossroads (Crossroads Academy #1)
by J.J. Bonds
Publication Date:  November 2011

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** This title was provided to us by the Publisher for an honest review.
We were in no way paid for our opinions **

MaryAnn NewCrossroads by J.J. Bonds was a read that took me by surprise.  I wasn’t sure what I was going to find when I started reading this book.  With the vampire genre beaten to death, and with the stories sounding all too familiar, Crossroads was an intriguing and refreshing read.  Fans of Vampire Academy by Richelle Meade will really enjoy this series by J.J. Bonds.

Katia finds herself being shipped off to an elite school for vampires called Crossroads Academy.  After enjoying a life with her Uncle Aldo in Romania, Katia finds it a totally different scene when she arrives at the school.  Even with her powerful name and connections, Katia still finds herself as a stranger looking in.

Luckily for her, she finds a few friends that have made her life at Crossroads Academy more enjoyable and not so torturous.  But with dreams that haunt her day and night, and a dark secret that she and her uncle have hidden from everyone, will Katia ever find some sort of normalcy in her crazy world?

With a disturbing violent trend that has hit the neighbouring human town, it now seems that Katia’s past has come back to haunt her…or rather hunt her!  Will her secrets be revealed?  Will she loose the only people that she has come to trust at Crossroads Academy?  Kill or be killed takes on a whole new role as Katia comes face to face with her nightmare.

If you’re looking for a kick ass chick who can pretty much take care of herself, Katia is your girl.  Aside from the fact that she seems to be constantly angry and veers far, far away from forming any friendships, Katia is a pretty awesome character.  Bu when she starts to let her guard down a little, and we see the softer side of her, what’s there not to love about this character?  Throw in a shady past that we don’t find out about until near the end, she is pretty fascinating.

And let’s not forget about Nik.  Nik who is obviously crushing on Katia.  Nik who is so skilled at fighting that Katia has one on one lessons to hone in on her skills.  Which, by the way, reminded me a little bit of the gym scene in Vampire Academy where Rose and Dmitri are training in the gym, which I loved!  Nik, who is described to be so gorgeous and full of heart.

What did I really enjoy about this book?  The fact that author, J.J. Bonds, does a pretty amazing job describing scenes involving fighting and/or violence.  The training that both Katia and Nik do are described to the tees.  I can easily picture the images in my head.  The stances, the kicks, the punches, the rolls, the target training…everything!  And not only were the training montages vivid, but the actual fight scenes were amazingly described.  I could almost smell the sweat and blood as I was reading.  I could easily imagine hearing the crushing of the leaves and picture Katia holding her crossbow awaiting for her prey to emerge out of the trees.

The twists and turns found in the book were well done, and done in a way in which J.J. Bonds incorporates Katia’s past into her present is done seamlessly.  I mean, come on!  Who doesn’t enjoy delving in to a characters past to see where and what she came from?  How things came to be?  Gotta love the story within the story.

I recommend Crossroads by J.J. Bonds to fans of Richelle Meade’s Vampire Academy, and for fans of vampire reads in general.  You will not be sorry that you picked this one up.  It has some of the typical vampire clichés but also has different elements that readers will come to enjoy.

Chapter-by-Chapter-header---InterviewTop Favs with J.J. Bonds

Hi MaryAnn! Thanks so much for having me at Chapter by Chapter!

You’re home alone, there’s a fire!  Top 3 things you’d grab and save from the fire.

JB-Fire

What? Fire? I’ve so got this! My husband has given me plenty of lessons on how to operate the fire extinguisher… If only I’d been paying attention and not had my face stuck in a book. Okay, so run it is. The first thing I’d grab is my laptop, because, you know, writer. Next up would be our family photo album. My husband and I are old school and we love turning the pages to look at family pics! And last but not least, my crazy dogs! I’d like to think they could get out on their own, but better safe than sorry!

Top 3 Favorite authors (dead or alive) and why:

JB-Authors

I am a huge fan of both Christopher Pike and RL Stine. I was one of those super awkward and shy tweens who spent a lot of time reading and I absolutely devoured their books. If either of those names were printed on the cover, I was reading it. Their stories opened up a whole new world for me and also inspired me to try my own hand at YA as a teenager.

 I also lurve Jennifer L. Armentrout.  She’s a wonderful storyteller with an amazing voice, but above all, I admire her passion and discipline for the craft. I guess you could say I’m in awe of her total awesomeness!

Top 3 Favorite snacks while writing and why:

JB-Snacks

Mint chocolate chip ice cream (chocolate chip will do in a pinch), chocolate chip cookies, and Reese’s peanut butter anything. Are you noticing a pattern? I have a killer sweet tooth which I frequently indulge when I’m editing or hit a block. I’ve found there’s inspiration at the bottom of every ice cream bowl!

Top 3 favorite movies of all time and why:

JB-movies

Zombieland: It’s got the double-tap and a zombiefied Bill Murray. What more can you ask for?

Resident Evil (no judging, please). It’s not a cinematic masterpiece, but I’ve seen it upwards of 50 times and I just never get tired of it.

28 Days Later: Are you seeing a theme yet? I guess I’m hooked on the undead and this is a zombie film done right. It’s real, it’s gritty, and yet there’s still hope, kind of like The Walking Dead, which happens to be another obsession of mine!

Top 3 favorite gadgets and why:

JB-gadgets

I’m not super techy, but there are exactly three gadgets that have greatly improved my quality of life (and saved my sanity)! First and foremost is my iPhone. I was a late convert, but now I’m not sure I could live without it. My iPhone is my life! (Sad but true.) I use it to manage my schedule, work, take notes, take pics, everything. I am also really partial to my Kindle. Before the advent of the ebook, I was dragging a backpack of books every time I went on a trip. Now there’s always a book at my fingertips, my back doesn’t hurt, and I can even read on my phone in a pinch! Last but not least is my Passport external hard drive. I lost a flash drive earlier this year that contained all of my backup files and I nearly had a panic attack. *shudders* The hard drive is much bigger and more difficult to lose… in theory.

Love your answers J.J.!  Thanks for stopping by!!

About the Author:

 

 

J.J. Bonds is an independent author who writes Young Adult Paranormal Romance & Urban Fantasy. She is the author of the bestselling Crossroads Academy series. J.J. lives in Carlisle, Pennsylvania where her obsession with all things paranormal keeps life interesting. She lives with her husband, daughter, and two rambunctious dogs. Loves Buffy, Mexican food, and zombies. Sings off key.

Connect with the Author:  Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

Chapter-by-Chapter-header---Giveaway

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2 Comments

  1. I’m glad you enjoyed Crossroads! I had it as part of Indie Girl March and was blown away by how J.J. took something that has been really done and freshened it up :D Great review
    Tiff- Escaping… One Book @ a Time recently posted..**REVIEW** The Evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle HodkinMy Profile

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  2. Lauren
    4/11/2013

    You just said the magic words: Vampire Academy! Katia sounds like an amazing heroine, maybe she’ll fill the Rose shaped hole in my life ever since Last Sacrifice. :-) Great review! And love J.J.’s taste in authors and movies. Thanks for sharing!
    Lauren recently posted..Behind the Scenes: Short Story Inspiration for Scowler by Daniel KrausMy Profile

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