Thursday, February 7, 2013

Matt Archer: Blade's Edge by Kendra Highly: Guest Post, Excerpt and Review:RABT Tour Stop



The Little Writer Who Could
by Kendra Highley
One of my favorite stories as a little kid was The Little Engine That Could. I wasn’t very big for my age, nor fast, agile or tough. But I was persistent. If something interested me, I’d drive my parents crazy until we went to the library so I could read up on the subject. I was probably the foremost 6-year-old expert on Jacques Cousteau. Yeah, I was weird like that. Still am, to some extent, but most writers love research, so I know I’m not alone.
What drew me to the Little Engine was the fact that he wasn’t the biggest or the fastest but, even when he got teased, he stayed on course despite the perceived adversity. In the end, what did he do? He pulled those carts up the mountain when no one else could.
Writing, as a journey, is a lot like the Little Engine’s trip up the mountain. It’s hard work. Brain strain, writer’s cramp, writer’s block, piles of unwashed laundry, deleted words, blunt critique--all of it comes with the territory. Add in everyday concerns like paying the bills, taking care of your home and being there for your family, and it’s tough to keep going sometimes. That mountain looks like Everest from the bottom and seems to grow even as you climb. Two steps forward, one step back.
That’s where the Little Engine’s mentality has to kick in, except I’d take it a step further. Not “I think I can,” but “I know I can, and I will!” Expect failure, and that’s what you’ll get. So why not expect to succeed? Tell yourself, “It’s hard, it’s killing my mind, it hurts my heart, but when I’m finished, by God, it’ll be AWESOME!”
Take it in small pieces. Think of that mountain as a series of short hills. Climb a bit, then rest. Set your climbing pins. Tie in. Then get ready to climb the next part. In the end, you’ll look back at your finished “mountain” and I say, “I did that!”
And it’s AWESOME!

Author Bio:
Kendra C. Highley lives in north Texas with her husband and two children. She also serves as staff to two self-important and high-powered cats. This, according to the cats, is her most important job.
Kendra believes chocolate is a basic human right, running a 10k is harder than it sounds, and that everyone should learn to drive a stick-shift. She loves monsters, vacations, baking and listening to bad electronica. 
More information about the Matt Archer universe, works in progress and the nature of the Higgs Boson* can be found at
(*Yeah…not really. We’ll let the scientists handle that part.)

Contact Links:

Young Adult Paranormal
Title: Matt Archer: Blade's Edge
Sequel to Matt Archer: Monster Hunter
Author - Kendra C. Highley

Date to be Published: October 19, 2012


When Matt Archer was fourteen, he discovered monsters are real. As if that wasn’t enough to go on for a few decades, Matt also found out that he’d been chosen to hunt those monsters–with a sentient, supernatural knife. With disappearances mounting in Afghanistan, it's up to Matt to stop this new threat before it's too late.

Purchase Links:


Matt Archer: Monster Hunter – Free!  Use coupon code XF23B via Smashwords
Matt Archer: Blade’s Edge—25% off!  Use coupon code UD38J via Smashwords
Coupons are good from the start of the tour through February 10, 2013.



“Archer,” a man said. “Wake up.”
Since it wasn’t Mom demanding I get up for school, I ignored the voice and curled up tighter across my row of seats. The rumbling of the plane would rock me back to sleep.
Someone flicked me on the ear. Annoyed, I opened one eye to find Schmitz’s oversized beak inches from my own nose. He was leaning over the row of seats in front of mine to get close. Even with the shades drawn over the plane’s windows, I could still count his nostril hairs. Six.
I groaned. “Man, that’s an ugly sight first thing in the morning.”
“Nice. And you shouldn’t let your guard down like that. I didn’t even have to sneak up on you,” he said, leaning back to mock-glare at me. “Didn’t I teach you better than that?”
“You taught me to hide and track, not sleep with one eye open,” I grumbled. Being awake sucked.
Schmitz’s dog tags were dangling from his neck. We hit a patch of turbulence and they swung toward my eyeball, the imprinted letters of “T. Schmitz” coming at me in a blur.
“Master Sergeant, do you mind?”
“You’re such a daisy in the morning.” He tucked the tags down the collar of his green battle dress uniform. We all wore BDUs of various colors—desert, forest, jungle—when traveling. They were more comfortable than anything else, especially since we couldn’t wear sweats on ops.
I grunted. “What’s the ‘T’ stand for?”
“Too many questions,” he said.
“Oh, come on. I’ve known you a year, dude,” I said. “Isn’t it time you told me?”
“I don’t tell nobody my first name,” Schmitz said, crossing his arms. "Nobody."
“I’ve known that jackwagon six years, and he won’t tell me either,” Johnson muttered from across the aisle. “It’s probably Teddy Bear.”
“Sir, yes, sir. Means women find me cuddly, sir,” Schmitz said. He came around his row of seats into the aisle, saluted Johnson, then prodded me in the side with his foot. The combat boot in the ribs made me scowl, and he laughed, saying, “You’ve been out like the dead for the whole flight. Time to get your lazy butt up and report for duty, soldier.”
I sat up and stretched. My neck bones felt welded together, resulting in a massive crick. The headache from the knife fight was finally gone, though. “We almost back to Kadena?”
He nodded. “Thirty minutes out. Major Tannen wants to talk to you before we land, so you’d best get to the head and clean up some.”
I stumbled toward the bathroom, taking care not to bump arms flung over armrests or feet sticking out in the aisle. We’d hiked down the mountain early the morning after the hunt, then caught transport on a giant Chinook twin-rotor helicopter. It had been a very bumpy ride to the nearest airport, and most of us were feeling pretty rough when we boarded our flight. Nearly everyone else was still asleep, wiped from the mission. Uncle Mike, Colonel Black and Ramirez were huddled in the front row, their heads close together while they talked. Not a good sign.

Read my Review of Book 1, Matt Archer: Monster Hunter HERE 



A worthy successor to the first book, Blade’s Edge is an exciting, edge-of-your-seat adventure. This time the stakes are higher than ever. This time good friends are lost. This time relationships change and the characters are tested in ways that will astound you. This time the monsters are sneakier, smarter, and harder to dispatch. 
With believable dialogues, and smoothly flowing prose, Kendra once again displays indisputable story-telling skills. The monsters are ferocious and the battle scenes are so well-described with succinct, yet powerful sentences that they easily pulled me into the action. In this installment, Matt is wiser; he is bulked up and in peak physical condition.  His good friend Will is there to back him up. As Matt is maturing, so too, is Will. I REALLY like many of the characters in this series.  I like the way they are changing to meet the escalating challenge, while remaining true to their basic personalities. This is an exciting series, and I am eagerly looking forward to more!
This book was provided to me by the author in return for my honest review.
Reviewed by Laurie-J


January 28 - Reading Addiction Blog Tours - Meet and Greet
January 29 - Known to Read - Review/Guest Post
January 30 - Words I Write Crazy - Review/Guest Post
January 31 - Kinx book Nook - Review/Guest Post
February 1 - Solitary Bookworm - ReviewFebruary 2 - Twinsie Talk Book Reviews - Review
February 3 - Andi's YA Book Reviews - Review
February 4 - The Adventures Within - Review/Guest Post
February 5 - My Reading Addiction - Review
February 6 - My Cozie Corner - Review
February 7 - Laurie's Thoughts and Reviews - Review/Guest Post
February 8 - RABT Reviews - Review

*Disclosure of Material Connection: I am a tour host of Reading Addiction Blog Tours and a copy of this book was provided to me by the author. Although payment may have been received by Reading Addiction Blog Tours, no payment was received by me in exchange for this review. There was no obligation to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are entirely my own and may not necessarily agree with those of the author, publisher, publicist, or readers of this review. This disclosure is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255, Guides Concerning Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising*

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