Just stopping by, or a blog tour review of Lies I Live By (and a giveaway)



lies i live by

Lies I Live Bu

By: Lauren Sabel

Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books

Publication Date: May 31st, 2016

Format: eARC


Romance, intrigue, and action collide in this psychic twist on the classic spy novel.

Callie Sinclair is literally out of her mind; as the government’s youngest psychic spy, she finds valuable information for top-secret missions. Her work keeps her headaches at bay, but it means she must lie to everyone she loves, including her longtime boyfriend, Charlie.

When a new psychic arrives at the office, Callie can’t help but flirt; Jasper already knows her in a way Charlie never will.

But as her love life gets more complicated, so do her visions. People halfway around the world seem to be in danger…and people in her own backyard, too. If Callie can’t find a way to alter future events, she could lose the people she loves—and her mind. Literally.

Lauren Sabel’s enthralling, romantic novel captures the thrill of exploring a unique power in a dangerous world.

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4 star (griffin)

When you finish a book in one sitting, you know that its good. Lies I Live By throws you right into the action with some impressive mind spoon bending by Callie at a Christmas party and drastic change it heralds for her life. The main story picks up a year later, Callie is entrenched in Branch 13, a contracted branch of the CIA where psychics are used to look into, and in some cases influence, threats the American security. Throughout the book, Lauren realistically relays the stress and struggle working for Branch 13 has on Callie’s life and there is a great balance on the page of time spent between these two worlds that Callie exists in.

The mystery is engrossing and no clues go forgotten when it comes to figuring out what the villain has planned. As for Callie’s forays into exploring and refining her psychic gifts, Lauren gives these a believable spin where these scenes are visually stimulating while still being easy to follow and not over the top. The way the program Callie works for is set up is another refreshingly realistic twist. The teens and people in general who work for the program are only told what they need to know, which is very little, and know only the very minimum when it comes how to the branch works.

In addition, I think it bears mentioning that the love triangle that is referenced in the synopsis serves a role other than creating angst. The two boys highlight the differences between Callie’s two lives and how the secrets that she keeps from her loved ones are so damaging. As for the other characters, Callie’s mother, her mother’s boyfriend, and her boss Indigo especially, are fully developed and exhibit a range and depth of personality that befits there roles in the story.

My only issue with the book is the unnecessary addition of a character, Amber, to add even more angst to the plot. She serves as a possible love interest for Callie’s boyfriend and plays no larger role, doesn’t even have a speaking role, than being something to drive Callie and Charlie apart. It is also mentioned, quite unbelievably, at the end that Callie is becoming friends with this chick who once tried to kiss her very much taken boyfriend.

Lies I Live By is a great paranormal espionage mystery read that functions very well on its own with contained and neatly solved plot points. There is room for a sequel with more psychic adventures with Callie and the possibility of Jasper returning and exploring the effect that Callie’s gifts have on her relationship with the ever understanding Charlie (seriously he’s perfect, I need a copy of him STAT), but I am happy with the way everything was finished and am pleased to think that Callie lives happily ever after.

about the author

Lauren Sabel
Originally from the Rocky Mountains, Lauren Sabel has returned to the cool mountain air of Boulder, Colorado after living in several wonderful cities that she will always love and continue to visit year after year.
Lauren loves her husband, her family, her friends, and stories that end happily. (Unfortunately, hers never do.) She also loves digging into her mind and revealing tiny gems she didn’t know were there.
Lauren learned to mind dig while getting her MFA in Creative Writing from Naropa, a Buddhist college in Boulder, Colorado. Before Naropa, Lauren studied film in Rome, where she developed her love of crypts and other beautiful creepy things. She also worked in the film industry in New York and San Francisco, focusing mainly on film festivals, as she can never pass up a good party. In San Francisco she worked for Chronicle Books, where she was inducted into the fascinating world of book publishing.
For the past eight years, Lauren has been teaching college students the joys of creative writing, whether they like it or not.
In 2008, Lauren was published in Undiscovered Voices, an anthology of the best new writers for children in the U.K., where she was living at the time. Then life got very exciting very quickly. She signed with Jodi Reamer Esq. at The Writer’s House Agency in New York, and they made magic happen, and that magic is named Katherine Tegen. (aka: Katherine Tegen Publishing, Harper Collins).
At that time, I was obsessed with reading books about the remote viewers who helped the US government during the Cold War. My book LIES I LIVE BY came out of how that research blended with my imagination. Callie, the 17 year old psychic spy, burst out of me with a voice of her own, and 18 months later, she was ready.
LIES I LIVE BY came out May 2016 with Katherine Tegen Books.
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Disclaimer: The synopsis and cover picture were pulled from the book’s Goodreads page. Neither belong to us. The author info, image, giveaway, and more were provided by Fantastic Flying Book Tours. A review copy was provided in exchange for an honest review.

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