Katrina Snow’s debut novel Forbidden is a simply brilliant fantasy tale that is addictive with its delectable dialogue, page-sizzling chemistry and romance to die for! One of the best books I’ve read this year!
Lady Katherine Durant has been under her Uncle’s control since her parents both tragically died and she became his ward. Both blessed, and cursed, with unimaginable powers, Kate has mastered the ability to keep her Gifts hidden in a world where sorcery is forbidden and punishable by death. When her Uncle gives her to another man who in turn binds her to him, Kate flees, desperately seeking out her cousin and joining her on a journey across the land so her cousin can participate in contest to win the hand of a prince. Attempting to hide in plain sight as a maid, Kate isn’t prepared to find herself thrust in the spotlight when she herself in entered into the contest. Going barb for barb against an intelligent and daring prince who makes her burn, Kate must try to protect her heart as she continues to discover that maybe running is no longer the answer; especially when she might have found something worth fighting for….love.
Having recently devoured Forbidden, I have no qualms in saying that this book is one of the best I’ve read all year, easily keeping me up until all hours of the morning—something that doesn’t happen very often. Considering I was unsure what to expect heading into the story, Snow absolutely blew me away and sucked me in with Kate and Bregovi’s sensational chemistry and sharp, witty banter. Their’s was some of the best chemistry I have read in a novel in a long time, if ever and I ate up every shared moment, touch, kiss and sentence shared between them.
Katrina Snow has simply outdone herself with the chemistry and connection she has written into the story between Kate and Bregovi. This alone could have easily made me adore the story with so much wit and sizzle written into their developing relationship. I loved the push and pull, the determination Bregovi had to be with Kate—it made me swoon. Yet, at its base Forbidden also features a very vivid storyline that weaves all the best elements of fantasy combined. Magic, sorcery, romance, humour, friendship, family…everything blends together with fire, flair and sensational dialogue that is pretty much perfect.
Even the characters I couldn’t fault, especially the leads. Kate was a sensational heroine to follow; strong willed, intelligent and vocal—refusing to bend for anyone. She had fire inside her and personality and I loved that Snow wrote her so likable. You were one hundred percent behind Kate all the way. Bregovi was charming and dashing, and really, really sexy. He was cheeky and adventurous and adored his sister Rachel too, something that won points with me.
Forbidden was well written; Katrina Snow’s writing painting a lovely fantasy world that unfolds through alternating POV’s between Kate and Bregovi and a few minor characters too. I loved the cast of characters Snow littered Forbidden with. Bregovi’s sister Rachel was a true sweetheart, as was her love interest who was simply perfect for her. Bregovi’s friend Wolfe intrigues me with his cheeky personality, as does Kate’s cousin Victoria who seemed to go back and forth between helpful and kind, and well….not.
I’m highly intrigued by the world of sorcery and genies Snow has created. Underneath Kate’s plight, there seems to be another sub-story brewing that makes me excited for possibilities with future books and the chance to follow other characters in future tales, some of which I’ve mentioned.
Deeply delicious, I cannot praise Forbidden enough! Katrina Snow has seriously impressed me with her debut and I cannot wait to see what she has in store next with the second novel, Fractured. If it’s anything like Forbidden I have no doubt it’ll be brilliant!
Joy is Found is the third novel in the Men of Ocean Beach series by Emma James and sees ladies’ man Levi find love this time around as our beloved characters continue on their way to happiness.
Picking up where the previous novel left off, Joy is Found continues to follow Faith and the men in her life---Harley, Jase, Retro, Levi and Keanu, her late brothers best friends. As their lives continue to develop and they find new friendships, love and laughter, Emma James takes them on various journeys to find their own forms of happiness.
Having previously enjoyed the first two books in this series, Emma James is back with another wonderfully told and interwoven installment. There’s a lot going on in this series and this novel in particular. Emma James strays from the pack and tells her series through the eyes of a number of different characters at different intervals. It’s nothing for her to share a couple of lines from one characters POV and then jump to another and then back again. Though this makes for a very detailed and well-rounded depiction, I think it could get confusing for some.
As I previously mentioned, Levi is front and centre with his romance to Joy, a pin-up style mechanic who is from Levi's past and someone in a position to understand him like no other. Personally I thought Joy was a sweetie and liked that James explored her vulnerabilities. Emma James gave Joy and Levi a real connection and something they shared that was really powerful.
There's a lot going on in this novel with many of the characters. Faith and Jase continue to find their feet in their relationship as Retro and Birdie receive a surprise....or two. Keanu and Hope continue to remain strong and Emma James adds new characters to the series as we finally discover the secret behind Hudson Raine, but are left to wonder what is going on with Slade and Phoenix.
Intricate, romantic and easy to get caught up in, Joy is Found is another great Ocean Beach novel that ends well, and makes me want to read the next book pronto! ...more
A Tangle of Gold is the fast paced and thrilling conclusion to Jaclyn Moriarty’s The Colours of Madeline series and is a rich, powerful ending that closes the series in spectacular fashion!
Picking up where the last novel left off, A Tangle of Gold introduces readers to a Kingdom of Cello that is in crisis. Colour attacks have been steadily escalating to dangerous proportions and with Princess Ko’s deceptions revealed, a new band of Elites take power, imprisoning Princess Ko and forcing her supporters into hiding. The dangers from the Hostile armies grow and as true identities are revealed and loyalties put to the test, Elliot and Madeleine must band together with their loved ones if they have any hope of saving the Kingdom they love and its people.
Though I admit I’m sad to see this trilogy come to an end, Jaclyn Moriarty does not disappoint with this final novel—rather she introduces her readers to a new level of awesomeness that sees her reveal more incredibly unexpected twists than ever! So much happened and so much was revealed over the course of this book; it really was one roller-coaster ride after another.
I was truly impressed with Moriarty’s ability to tie everything up so wonderfully and have so many moments, circumstances and situations make sense. There was a lot of, “Ah!” moments as everything involving our characters suddenly fell into place. There are some almost obvious revelations, but some real shockers too.
I’ve truly fallen in love with this series; from the imaginative concepts, creations and its setting to the lyrical writing and endearing characters who you can’t help but adore. All the characters penned by Jaclyn Moriarty have purpose and personality and compliment both each other and the story beautifully. It’s so hard to fault any of them, although I missed seeing my normal Elliot for most of this novel. It was a great twist for the conflicts his indecisions caused, but like Madeleine I missed the Elliot I had come to love.
A Tangle of Gold also gives readers the opportunity to get to know Keira a lot better. A decent portion of this novel is told through Keira’s eyes and follows Keira to the delight of this reader! Having not thought much of Keira during the first two books, following her in A Tangle or Gold only led to my absolute adoration of her—I love this girl! Keira is such a wonderful individual; so very likable and someone you really liked seeing find happiness.
I’m sorry to see my journeys with Madeleine and Elliot come to an end. I’ve enjoyed each book immensely and have loved seeing the characters grow and develop. Madeleine’s voice has always been powerful and I’ve loved her characterisation, who alongside Elliot, were perfect main characters to follow.
Jaclyn Moriarty has created something truly different with this series that is unique, beautiful and endlessly beguiling—this is a world you will want to get lost in time and time again!
Fractured Suns is the stellar sequel to Theresa Kay’s debut novel Broken Skies and is another fast paced, exciting and deeply addictive story. Highly emotional, entrancing and simply brilliant, Fractured Suns is impossible to put down!
After finding myself deeply impressed by Broken Skies, I was so excited to dive headfirst into Fractured Suns and I’m glad to say it doesn’t disappoint. Fractured Suns is pretty much as good as the first novel, if not better, and featured all the danger, adrenaline pumping excitement and romance I fell in love with the first time round.
Fractured Suns once more follows Jasmine “Jax” Mitchell, a haflbreed who has been to hell and back after the events of the last book. After rescuing her twin brother from the E’rikon, falling in love and bonding with Lir, losing Lir to his uncle and managing to escape the earths alien city with only just their lives, Jax has been hiding out in a cabin alongside her brother, Peter, Flint and her newly discovered grandfather. However when Lir’s cousin comes to take Jax to see him, the last thing she expects is to find herself in the middle of even more shocking dealings and discoveries that will change the way she feels, loves and sees the world forever. There’s war on the horizon and Jax isn’t sure which side she should be on……
My goodness, Fractured Suns was a really emotional novel to read, especially towards the end. I’m going to try to keep spoilers to a minimum, but I’m really emotionally drained after reading this incredible novel. Wonderfully written, Fractured Suns was fast paced, exciting and as driven as the first book. Theresa Kay really knows how to capture her audience and continues to develop her storyline and world sensationally from the opening chapter!
I’m so incredibly in love with both Jax and Lir as characters. The incredible way Theresa Kay has written them simply blows me away. Jax to begin with is so incredibly complex. She’s a blend of fierce determination and strength and complete fragility. She’s traumatized and flawed and almost broken at times, but you can’t help but adore her. Kaye puts her through so many traumatic moments and forces Jax to ensure a lot of pain and loss, but she just keeps getting up and fighting. Honestly, Jax is just one of those honest to goodness well rounded, likable and awesome heroines!
With the first book told entirely through Jax’s eyes, it will no doubt thrill readers to learn that Theresa Kay writes Fractured Suns through both Jax and Lir’s POV’s. That’s right---we get to follow Lir in this instalment as well; something that helps enhance the reading experience with our young lovers separated and on different sides of the divide. Again, I love Lir pretty much as much as I love Jax and think he’s a terrific character. Plus, being able to see what he was going through while he and Jax are separated during the story allowed me as the reader to see what was going on on both sides, and not miss out on seeing Lir in the story, which is often the case when characters are separated the way they are in Fractured Souls yet the novel is told in only a single POV.
As individuals they are wonderful, but as a couple, and as a whole, Jax and Lir really are on a whole new level. I love the way Theresa Kay developed their relationship in the first novel and the way she continues to sustain it, whilst also adding in conflicts that push them and force them to fight for what they have. Theirs will never be an easy relationship and plenty of outside forces have the potential to be a threat, but I honestly hope Jax and Lir managed to keep the intensity, passion and love they share. I’ll never tire of seeing them together and I have no doubt I’m always going to be as invested in their relationship as I am now. Jax and Lir are so beautiful and endearing and bring out so much good in the other it’s impossible not to support them one hundred percent.
From beginning to end, Fractured Suns was a sensational read. I soared, broke and then soared again. Thrilling all the way to its end, Fractured Suns see Jax experience a heartbreaking loss, even as she makes some shocking discoveries and finds someone she never thought she’d see again.
Wonderfully written, paced and detailed, Fractured Suns is a worthy sequel and leaves me dying to get my hands on the next novel. I highly recommend this for fans of the Lux series by Jennifer L. Armentrout or anyone who is looking for a good alien romance with the perfect hint of dystopian and sci-fi thrown in! ...more
Abby and the Cute One by Erin Butler is the fifth and final instalment in the Backstage Pass series and tells the tale of the last single Seconds to Juliet member remaining Nathan, and the singer/songwriter who steals his heart.
I must admit, I really am sad to see this series come to an end. All the novels in Backstage Pass series have been fresh, fun contemporary reads that are littered with romance, friendship and entertainment. Just downright enjoyable stories; this series is one that has been easy to get lost in, and Abby and the Cute One is no exception.
Nathan Strong is the last single man standing, having watched all his bandmates fall in love and pair off, and with that status comes great responsibility. Nathan’s manager expects him to be the eligible bachelor he is and go on a series of PR related dates to boost Seconds to Juliet’s media interest. This isn’t a problem…..until Nathan meets Abby Curtis, the hot new talent who will be opening for them on their recent tour. Sweet, genuine and honest, Abby is someone Nathan actually wants to be with, but with stolen kisses and secrets rendezvous getting harder and harder, both Abby and Nathan must decide what is most important and what they are willing to fight for; their careers or each other?
If I’m honest, Abby and the Cute One isn’t my favourite book in this series by far, but it really was a sweet, enjoyable read. I’ve loved following these boys and seeing them fall for their respective girls. Nathan just rounded out a great bunch in lovely, sweet fashion.
Nathan and Abby were really down to earth characters, even though he is technically an internationally renowned music sensation. They had an endearing chemistry and the fact they shared a passion and love of music saw them bond and connect really quickly.
Obviously there is some drama and a lot of teen angst in this novel, but it’s hard to do anything but follow Nathan and Abby along for the ride and enjoy everything that Erin Butler has written.
Cute, fun and very sweet, Abby and the Cute One is an enjoyable conclusion to what has been a very enjoyable series. I’m sorry to see my time with the Seconds to Juliet boys come to an end, but I highly recommend anyone who hasn’t read the series yet to do so—you won’t be sorry!
Brenda Drake’s latest release Thief of Lies is a whimsical adventure that is best described as a blend of Harry Potter, The Mortal Instruments and the Mythos series by Jennifer Estep. Fans of fantasy and magic will find it near impossible not to get lost within the pages of this story.
Thief of Lies is told through the eyes of Gianna "Gia" Kearns, an intelligent and literature loving young woman who discovers that nothing is as it first seems when she and her best friends are pulled through a portal from one library in Boston to another in Paris. Setting in motion events that will see Gia learn shocking secrets about her parentage, Thief of Lies introduces readers to a whole new world where magic and monsters mingle.
Those heading into Thief of Lies can be forgiven for thinking the tale would focus heavily around libraries, however in this story the libraries themselves are only a portal and gateway into another land all together and are the start of the world Brenda Drake has created. Drake introduces readers to an interesting concept with the Mystik world in Thief of Lies, made up by all manner of supernatural creatures including witches, wizards and variations on werewolves and vampires that see the author attempt something different than what is in a lot of mainstream YA.
In the tradition of The Mortal Instruments, Thief of Lies sees the main character thrust into a world full of possibility and being thrown by the truth of her true heritage. You know what, for all my comparisons so far, Thief of Lies really does have its own storyline and significant differences. I'm not going to give too much away, but Brenda Drake obviously has some plans for this series.
I really enjoyed Gia as a main character in this book. She had natural charisma and personality. I liked that she was stubborn and embraced her new life once she got over the initial shock. In fact, all the characters were fabulous. From Gia’s human friends and family to the individuals that made up the library Sententials and the Mystik community; Arik, Aftron, Faith, Nick, Carrig, Nana, Sinead, Deirdre, Professor Attwood, Lei, Bastian etc….they all has such different personalities and attributes. Basically I thought they complimented the story well and can’t fault any of them.
Brenda Drake really impressed me with the chemistry between Gia and her main love interest Arik in this novel. Theirs is the kind of forbidden I really love and the will-they-won’t-they that simmered between them was enticing. I loved the sexual tension that exists between them and the attraction that is obviously there. Drake does hint at making things interesting with Bastian, a sexy wizard who begins to vie for Gia’s affection and someone I genuinely like. Gia certainly is spoiled for choice with her men, although at this point in time, Arik is my choice.
With a lot of different elements coming to light and characters in play, Thief of Lies is a very promising start to a new fantasy series. Brenda Drake will appeal to those who love magic, romance and adventure and is sure to leave you looking forward to following Gia on her journey with whatever happens next! ...more
Dangerous Lies is the latest release from best-selling author Becca Fitzpatrick and is a surprisingly warm read that features a lovely coming of age story and wonderful character growth.
Everything about Stella Gordon is a lie. Her name, her life, her entire history. Everything about her is a carefully crafted lie orcastrated by the United States government after Stella witnessed a violent crime and was put into witness protection following the arrest of the man she saw kill her mother’s drug dealer. Ripped away from her home, her boyfriend, and her life in Philadelphia, Stella is sent to small town Thunder Basin, Nebraska to hide out. Stella just wants her life to return to normal and despises the thought of being stuck in Thunder Basin....but with the help of some super friendly locals, her tough-as-nails "foster mother" Carmina and her sexy next-door neighbour Chet, Stella soon begins to find unexpected happiness. But what happens when the secrets Stella keeps come back to haunt her? Will she and those she cares about pay for her past mistakes?
Having now finished this book, I'm finding it really hard to categories Dangerous Lies. Despite its premise, it’s not really a mystery or a thriller per say, despite our heroine’s connection to a violent crime. It actually comes across more as a coming of age story at times and merges with a nice romance set in a small country town in Nebraska.
Dangerous Lies is a steadily paced novel and isn’t overly fast. Some readers may find the beginning slow, but those who persevere will be rewarded with a warm and enjoyable read, tinged with mystery and the possibility of danger. Becca Fitzpatrick always satisfies and Dangerous Lies is no exception; if you’re anything like myself, you’ll be sucked into the characters world within Thunder Basin after a few chapters and be hopeful things work out for Stella.
Yet in saying that, in the beginning I very much loathed Stella. I mean, loathed her. She came across as spoilt and selfish and infinitely ungrateful. And yet, as the story went on, we began to understand the life she’d led and what forced her to become so guarded and jaded. We learnt about what went on behind closed doors of her high society life, and as Stella took steps forward and began to grow, I ended up liking her much more. By the end of Dangerous Lies, she was almost a completely different character who had grown so much—and I liked this.
The romance within Dangerous Lies as also something I did enjoy. Fitzpatrick starts Stella and Chet out as friends who despite their obvious attraction, slowly develop their relationship. Stella is very conflicted as technically she had a boyfriend prior to her move to Thunder Basin, so her reluctance to "cheat" on him is the main conflict behind her and Chet’s relationship.
I enjoyed the vast array of characters who called Thunder Basin home; most notably Carmina, Chet and Inny. Personally I would love to explore them some more if the chance ever arose. Becca Fitzpatrick manages to make the small country town of Thunder Basin a place I would love to visit (if it existed in real life that is!) with its swimming holes, carhops and carnival fun!
Overall a good read, Dangerous Lies admittedly starts slow, but then picks up to be an enjoyable tale. Worth a read! ...more
Torch Rock is the third and final novel in Kacey Vanderkarr’s Reflection Pond series and is an epic conclusion to what has been an exciting, passionate series full of twists, turns and wonderful moments.
Facing an upcoming war against their city’s enemies, Callie, Rowan and their loved ones must venture to a seemingly lost city to a last ditch effort to gain allies in their fight against Fraeburdh. With the threats greater than ever and Callie struggling to move on from the torture she experienced in the last book, Callie must make the toughest choices she ever has before and reconcile with herself if she has any hope of protecting the fae and stopping Eirensae from falling into the hands of fae who would see it destroyed once and for all……
From the moment Callie fell through the reflection pond and into the fae city of Eirensae in the first novel, Kacey Vanderkarr has had my complete and utter attention. Vanderkarr has released one well written, well detailed and incredibly paced instalment after another, and Torch Rock is no exception. Continuing on where the previous novel left off, we return to a world in chaos and in the middle of a war. The safety and the future of the people of Eirensae are once more in Callie’s hands and our beloved heroine must make some big sacrifices to save them.
Told through the varying POV’s of both Callie and Rowan, Torch Rock is a very fast paced and exciting novel. There are a lot of epic battle sequences and this novel is not without its losses as we see the lives of some of our beloved characters lost throughout the story. Kacey Vanderkarr sure makes you feel for those in this novel and no one is safe as Callie and Rowan make some difficult choices throughout the story.
I’ve fallen in love with Callie and Rowan over the course of the series and I loved following them as much in this novel as the past. Both Callie and Rowan were two very fractured and broken people and it's been beautiful to see them heal each other. Callie's journey to trust has been a long one and Kacey Vanderkarr has never shied away from the difficulty her heroine has faced.
All the characters Vanderkarr has introduced have been amazing and I’d be lying if I didn’t say I was sad to see them go. I don’t know whether Kacey Vanderkarr would ever consider revisiting her world, but I personally would love the opportunity to see more of many of them; especially Ember and Elodia. I feel like both these ladies have a lot more to tell and see the potential there.
From start to end Torch Rock was a worthy ending to what has been a brilliant series. If you’re a lover of the fae, or if you enjoy a well told fantasy series with solid characters, then the Reflection Pond series is the one for you. Romantic, exciting and seriously addictive, this series has been a pleasure to read and ends with perfect hope……
The Revolution of Ivy is the stunning follow up to Amy Engel’s debut novel The Book of Ivy, and manages to give its predecessor a run for its money with tantalising romance, high stakes and fantastic action.
After the events of the first book, Ivy Westfall finds herself lost and desolate; banished beyond the fence of Westfall and facing a harsh, unforgiving new environment. Having been torn from her family, and worst of all her husband Bishop, Ivy struggles in the barren world, but is surprised to learn of a society of people who have made the world outside the fence their home. Chances rise when Ivy is joined by Bishop on the outside and the two quickly settle into a routine with their new friends. Yet their happiness in an unexpected place is threatened when chaos erupts in Westfall and Ivy and Bishop must head back in order to stop the ones they love from killing each other and destroying Westfall forever……
After adoring The Book of Ivy so much last year, I was ecstatic to jump straight into The Revolution of Ivy and I’m thrilled to say Amy Engel doesn’t disappoint. The Revolution of Ivy is really rich in romance between Ivy and Bishop, something I completely gobbled up. They have so much to overcome, especially considering Ivy’s admissions at the end of the last book about her feelings for Bishop. And yet, both Ivy and Bishop managed to come a long way over the course of The Revolution of Ivy as a couple and really blossomed. There were some hard times, but Bishop’s fierce dedication and love for Ivy forced the couple to decide what they wanted and fight for it; something that made for really fabulous reading.
I’ve fallen so deeply in love with both Ivy and Bishop as characters since reading this duology. They make a great couple but I also enjoy them individually. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed seeing Ivy get out from under her family and find her own happiness amidst this dystopian world. She’s become an even more brilliant heroine to follow.
The Revolution of Ivy is steadily paced novel, faster at some moments than others, but is a really great follow-up that is sure to satisfy. I’m sad to say goodbye to Ivy and Bishop if this is in fact the end to their story but have loved following them, and certainly wouldn’t pass up the opportunity to re-visit the world within the series if the chance ever arose. I’m sure either Ash or Caleb have a story to tell! Highly recommend! ...more
Hope Is Lost is the second book in Emma Jame’s New Adult series, Ocean Beach and is the next chapter is the lives of the characters who call Ocean Beach home. Join this close knit band of brothers as they move on from the loss of losing someone close, fall in love and learn to truly live again!
Hope Is Lost continues to follow the lives of Faith and her late brother Chance’s best friends, a group of lads living, working and surviving together. Harley, Text, Keanu, Levi and Retro are as thick as thieves and together with a number of other memorable characters including, Slade and Phoenix make the seaside town of Ocean Beach home. Faith’s arrival in Ocean Beach after the death of her brother years prior has begun to have an outward effect on the men who loved Chance and this series sees them begin to make new discoveries and changes to their lives.
Ocean Beach isn’t your typical romance series. While two of the Ocean Beach men have found love in consecutive novels; Retro and now Keanu, these novels don’t follow the typical format and feature one couple at a time, but rather follow all of the characters within the series. The majority of characters have a voice in each novel at some point in time, and whilst this may seem daunting at first; keeping track of the multiple characters and their individual lives and desires, after a while it becomes second nature to jump from one POV to the next, dependent on how central each character is to the story at any given point in time.
Personally I quite like all the characters in the series and the way they interact and relate to each other. They are a very close bunch, especially the boys, and care for each other a great deal. Though Chance died years before, each still holds a fair deal amount of pain from losing their "brother" and some of those who were on the island when he died are also physically affected by the bomb and fire that tore apart the night club. All those affected are quite resilient however, Keanu and Levi in particular and have managed to bounce back and continue on with their lives quite well all things considering.
Each installment in this series so far has brought a lot of light and love to these characters lives. Two of them have already found love and with the hints of other romances already in the air, I’m quite excited to see what Emma James plans for Levi, as well as Slade and Phoenix. I have to admit, Slade holds a special place in my heart and I'd be lying if I didn't admit the scenes in Hope Is Lost with him and the kitten just melted my heart!
As this chapter of the series concludes, I for one can’t wait to read the next book. Things are shaping up fantastically and I’m looking forward to seeing what Emma James has in store next. As Hope Is Lost concludes, there’s no doubt on my mind though that the question that is sure to be on every fan’s mind, is just who is Hudson Raine?? I for one can’t wait to find out! ...more
Inevitable Detour is a fast paced and dangerous story that features dark themes and plenty of romance in S.R. Grey’s debut novel!
Inevitable Detour is told through the eyes of Essalin Brant a twenty-two year old college student whose boring and predictable life takes a drastic turn when her best friend Haven is kidnapped and the only person who believes Haven didn’t willingly leave on her own is Havens older brother and ex-military man Farren Shaw. When Farren decides to track down his sister using his connections, Essa invites herself along on the cross country journey and soon finds herself beginning to fall for Farren, the mysterious man she’s crushed on through photographs of Haven’s for years, but who she has only just met.
What starts out as a journey to rescue her best friend, soon drags Essa into the dangerous world of human trafficking and sex slavery as it becomes evidently clear that Farren’s secret life and work are possibly the reason behind his sister’s abduction, and getting to know Farren may put Essa in more danger than she can handle......
I’m going to be honest here; I’m at two minds when it comes to Inevitable Detour. To begin with the premise blew me away and I was very excited to read the story but I don’t think the novel quite lived up to expectations. And I also had a couple of issue’s with the storyline and characters that kept me from ever really becoming blown away by the story.
Essa is for the most part a likable main character and Farren is sexy and appealing as a military man who is trying to rescue his sister, but I think the author tried too hard to have Essa and Farren’s relationship start straight away. Rather than have these two connect and have a great chemistry that develops into something more, Essa is basically obsessed with Farren before she even meets him; completely blown away by his smouldering good looks and sexiness. I just felt like the story would have been better if their initial relationship developed more naturally.
And yet, Essa and Farren have a really good chemistry. There were some great tender moments shared between them during their journey that are obvious pinnacle points where Farren’s feelings for Essa are beginning to deepen and become something real. I liked these moments and interactions; they were some of my favourites during the story.
My other big issue was Haven and her response to what she had been though. Now I don’t want to give away too many spoilers, but this young woman had been kidnapped, raped and shared by different men. She’d been abused and assaulted and I just feel like she reacted too easily about the whole situation. Even if someone goes along with an assault and multiple instances of forced sex to avoid being hurt too much, surely they’re going to be traumatised and effected—Haven wasn’t as much as I would have expected and seemed ready to move on and be happy too soon. This just didn’t seem realistic in my eyes.
Problems aside, Inevitable Detour weaves together a harrowing kidnapping with a cross country journey that sees two people fall in love. Despite its quirks, the novel was fast paced and exciting at times—I may possibly pick up the sequel after that killer cliff-hanger ending!
In the tradition of an Abbi Glines novel, Emma James debut tale A Little Faith is an emotional and driven story of friendship, loss and the potential moving on can bring. Featuring five luscious male specimens and a likable heroine, A Little Faith is a great start to a promising new NA series!
I have to be honest here, A Little Faith is a hard book to review for me, predominately because I know the author personally through blogging and the world of books. I went into this novel hopeful, but also wanted to keep an open and unbiased mind. So in saying that, I was really liked A Little Faith and I was impressed with the amount of emotion author Emma James managed to convey in her debut. The opening chapter tugged on my heart strings and made me feel, as we witness the loss of an individual who was young and living their life in a horrendous event. As the novel progresses you come to understand the impact such a loss and the event that caused it had on the lives of a group of young people.
A Little Faith is told through varying POV’s, including that of main character Faith and see’s Faith head to Ocean Beach, a beach side suburb to visit the best friends of her brother Chance. Now I don’t want to give away spoilers, but Faith is still reeling from a devastating loss years prior and hopes this visit will give her what she needs to be able to move on and come to terms with her grief.
While the book does centre predominately around Faith, A Little Faith also introduces us to Harley, Text, Retro, Keanu and Levi, the best friends of Faith’s brother Chance, men whose lives were tremendously impacted when tragedy struck. Personally I really liked all the guys and found them to have their own unique personalities and traits. A Little Faith focusing solely around the lives of these characters and seeing them live is actually quite interesting—they’ve made a lot of themselves and I enjoyed seeing how James works the dynamics of their relationships together.
There’s a lot of possibility for future books, with each main character deserving of their own tale as well as some of the minor characters like Retro’s sister Phoenix and bartender Slade. I’m really interested to see each character fall in love with Retro the first with his Birdie and the others soon to follow if the first book is any indication of what James has planned.
A Little Faith is a fun and flirty start to a new NA series as well as a great debut. While the characters are already very well rounded, they have even more potential for future storylines and as author Emma James leaves this novel with readers beginning to find themselves invested in the lives of her characters, I for one look forward to seeing what happens next! ...more
Forgiven is a lovely short, but well written, introduction to Rachel Morgan’s new Trouble series and a perfect taste that will leave you ready to read more of this new adult contemporary series!
Having already read Rachel Morgan’s Creepy Hollow series it’s suffice to say that I’m a fan, but I was still impressed by this quick read that was so very different from what I’ve read by her before. Introducing us to her new series, as a novella Forgiven is short but sweet, yet Morgan manages to pack a lot of emotion and longing into its short 80 pages.
Told through the eyes of Julia and following her return to her home town of Durban in South Africa, Forgiven is a story of love and life, as Julia returns to the town she fled from almost a year ago with no notice, no reason. Julia had it all; she was popular, she had a wonderful boyfriend and a family that loved her dearly, and yet she ran away from it for reasons unknown. Even though the story is told through Julia’s eyes, we as the reader don’t know what past event triggered Julia’s flight response, and it’s not until towards the end of the story do you learn the startling event that made her run.
Personally I liked Julia. She was nice to follow and the kind of person whom you can’t help but like. I liked Julia’s sisters Sarah and Sophie and am excited knowing they’ll be featuring in two of the Trouble books as the main characters. We only get to meet them momentarily in Forgiven, but thanks to this short novella I’m already looking forward to reading their tales.
A short but sweet story, Forgiven is a tale you will breeze through! Rachel Morgan starts her series off excellently with this clean, but tempting introduction and has me ready and waiting for the rest of the series! Definitely worth a read! ...more
Iron Pendulum is the exciting sequel to Megan Curd’s amazing steampunk adventure The Steel Lily and is another edge of your seat thrill ride that weaves dazzling romance with thrilling discovers and extreme danger as lives are on the line in the second book in The Periodic Series!
Megan Curd series does know how to write a brilliant steampunk tale. Iron Pendulum is a perfect mix of steampunk and dystopian that features a great cast of characters who share a fantastic dynamic and who continuously enhance a brilliant storyline. I’m very impressed how well written and well plotted this series is. Its obvious Curd has put a lot of thought into the development within her series. Certain revelations and developments go a long way to creating a solid developing story with plenty of history and back story.
Iron Pendulum continues to follow sixteen year old elementalist Avery Pike upon her return to Dome Four. After the shocking discoveries made by Avery and her friends in the first book, Avery and the resistance find themselves on a race against time to help the people of Dome Four who appear to be dying from lack of oxygen while also going up against a powerful enemy who wants complete control over the dome for himself.
As with the previous book I found Avery a thrilling heroine to follow. This fiery redhead with the multi colored eyes is a brave and passionate fighter who is willing to give everything and help people even when they don’t necessarily give her the respect and appreciation she deserves. Avery is one of those kick-ass characters who, while she doesn’t necessarily know when to censor her words or actions, is generally forward moving, quick thinking and daring. Avery loves her friends greatly and will do anything to protect those she cares about. Basically Avery rocks!
Megan Curd has penned a great heroine in Avery, but also manages to create a great cast of characters to compliment her. Jaxon, Sari and Alice return as well as Legs and Dana, with Dana having a more focal role in the story. Jaxon continues to be Avery’s solid love interest. Even the inclusion of a strapping her male character to the series does not interfere in Avery’s devotion and adoration for Jaxon as Megan Curd chooses to stay away from the stereotypical love triangle!
Incredibly shocking connections are discovered in this book with family connections popping up and a shocking betrayal just around the corner. Avery will face the shocking loss of someone she loves deeply and with every chapter of the book, the story just gets better and better!
Megan Curd has some incredible twists up her sleeves and as Iron Pendulum races towards an extremely climactic ending, readers will be left reeling and eagerly anticipating the next installment as Curd ends the story on a bit of a cliff-hanger! ...more
Captivate is a delightful debut by Aussie author Vanessa Garden and a lovely start to what promises to be an interesting series set in a magical underworld world full of love, danger and secrets!
Having read the premise of this story—an Australian teenager, kidnapped and swept up into an underwater world—my first thought was quite understandably "mermaids!" I experienced both disappointment and delight to discover that this wasn’t actually the case. Choosing not to go down this path, Vanessa Garden has penned an intriguing story with Captivate.
Whilst I’m being honest, Captivate wasn’t quite as addictive and beguiling as I’d hoped but it did make for an enjoyable read. Set in the lush, underwater world of Marin, Captivate follows Miranda Sun after she is kidnapped and brought to a land deep under the sea for mysterious and questionable reasons. Reasons we discover as the book progresses that intertwine with the history of those who call it home.
I liked the world Vanessa Garden has created in Captivate. It’s beautiful and lush, with the origins of these underwater people and how they came to live under the sea, in this dome like enclosure so sufficiently, different from what I’d read before. The characters, including heroine Miranda were likable and easy to read about, even if they were basic and their relationships predictable. Marko was alright as the king of Marin and Miranda’s main love interest and Robbie as Marko’s guard, friend and Miranda’s kidnapper/friend.
Miranda and Marko’s romance came on swiftly, but with both characters going into it with their eyes more or less open to the others motive and feelings this didn’t bother me too much. And yet I wasn’t blown away by their romance. It just was.
Don’t get me wrong, the characters were in no way lacking personality or likeability, but at times I felt disconnected from their plight. Captivate was just missing that something more for me. That special, often unnamable quality that takes a book from good and okay to brilliant and beyond.
That being said, I did like this story. There were a number of different story developments and revelations that kept me on my toes and I truly do want to see what decisions Miranda will make and whether she will return to Marin. I foresee a love triangle in the future between Miranda and the two men in her life, and though personally I’m over them myself, I think Vanessa Garden will explore this avenue.
With an interesting plotline and a lavish setting, Captivate was enough to whet my appetite and leave me wanting me. I look forward to what trouble’s await Miranda with her possible return to Marin and wonder what Vanessa Garden has in store for her heroine next! ...more
As a reader, there are rare times in one's life when you come across a book that changes you. Often unexpected, it's story manages to reach down into a deep, inner part inside you and wretch your emotions apart with it's haunting depth and beauty....All The Truth That's In Me is one of those books.
Having recently finished Julie Berry's stunning novel All The Truth That's In Me, I'm not really sure what to think. Or to say. Or even where to begin. This book is so far out of my comfort zone it's beyond ridiculous and yet I don't think I have the words to ensure my review does it justice. Nothing I could write would even come close to describing the unexpected brilliance and beauty, I personally, found within it's pages. This story is on another level entirely.
Written in rare second person and told in short, brief chapters All The Truth That's In Me is in no way my normal read. Admittedly, I experienced a brief difficulty getting into it in the very beginning due to the brief flashes into past experiences that I found confusing, but after this initial confusion I honestly found myself swept up into our protagonist Judith's haunting story. Author Julie Berry has done a terrific job with this historical novel. I feel wrecked having read it. There were so many moments when I felt torn apart, broken, an emotional wreck and yet I feel better having read it.
Understandably there are going to be people out there hesitant to read this book due to it's themes and the strong issues it explores, but All The Truth That's In Me is so much more than it seems. It's dark subject matter leads to a really unexpected read. Judith's story is agonizing; agonizing to read, heart wrenching at times to experience. And so incredibly beautiful.
As this book progressed, I felt more for Judith at times than I think I've felt for a main character in a long, long time. Possibly ever. Her voice is so incredibly raw and her emotions bleed through the pages. You simply can't not feel her pain and agony. Her loneliness and heartbreak take on a life of it's own and the broken, damaged way she, and others, view herself will break you. Seeing her pine for the one she thinks she can never have but still ultimately loves is so incredibly emotional.
The journey Judith goes on throughout this story is inspiring. Watching her find the strength to overcome what was taken from her and for her to want to better herself really does touch something in you. Seeing small acts of kindness for her from people in a village where the majority scorn and ridicule her; often seeing her as stupid and nothing is amazing to witness.
So, in saying how emotionally torn apart this book left me at times, it also stitched me back together. I was glued to this novel, frantically turning pages and amazed by the beauty I found in this story. Our protagonist goes though so much and as you see what it has done to her and the impact it's had on her, seeing the happy, fitting things she experiences towards the end of the novel just gives it so much more meaning.
Julie Berry takes you right into Judith's head with All The Truth That's In Me. Her voice is haunting and pain filled and as the story progresses and truths come to light, All The Truth That's In Me proves to be one of those stories that stays with you always. Despite having turned the final page, I find that Judy's story still lingers with me and I'm still lost in it's painful beauty.
Without a doubt a MUST read of 2013, All The Truth That's In Me is haunting, tragic and completely unforgettable! ...more
Mine to Spell is the wonderful sequel to Janeal Falor’s sensational debut You Are Mine and is an exciting follow up to a brilliant book that promises this author has many more fantastic tales up her sleeves!
Can I just say….I seriously love this series! I mean, seriously love it. Janeal Falor keeps proving to me what a talented storyteller she is: weaving together this sensational world of magic and repression and managing to capitalize and build on an already superb world with each story. Serena won me over in the first book, You Are Mine and then its prequel, Mine to Tarnish featuring Katherine left me longing for more but Mine to Spell has me falling in love with the series even more as Falor this time tells Cynthia’s story.
As the reader, we met Cynthia briefly in You Are Mine when we followed her older sister Serena, but we didn’t learn that much about her. Falor only allowed us to see her as Serena saw her and as the older sibling wanting to protect her younger sister. It never became evident just want talents and abilities Cynthia was hiding, something that does finally become apparent in Mine to Spell.
Cynthia was a really likable character. She’s a young woman living in a world where women are repressed and are the property of men. In the world Falor details, men use magic, and while woman have it in their blood, they’re supposedly not capable of producing it physically; something we’re coming to learn isn’t the case, especially where Cynthia is concerned. Though she is very much a product of the world she lives in, Cynthia seems a lot more comfortable in her own skin that her sister was. Acting the sweet, boy-crazed sister, Cynthia embraces the magic she has and has instead been secretly practicing spells for years.
Coming across as the ditzy young woman has allowed Cynthia to escape the notice of warlocks who may have chosen to use the magic running in her blood up until now, but when unexpected circumstances and perilous danger force her into the hands of a new master, Cynthia quickly realizes the only way to protect herself is to use her abilities and soon Cynthia finds herself making bold decisions to take back her freedom, finding new friends, love and power in the process.
Cynthia really takes a stand in this book, and though she’s understandably afraid, she’s also very strong and as her strength slowly grows with the help of those she loves and a new ally in the from of a charismatic and beguiling young foreigner who sees Cynthia as more than just property to be owned, Cynthia does shine and I loved seeing her do so. Who knew such a brilliant character existed under all the airhead act she put on!
The thing I love about this series is that every main character really has had their own story to tell so far. It’s not like we’ve been introduced to a bunch of characters in similar predicaments and then see the same story over and over with slight differences. We’re seeing different stories about different young women who share similar social status and standing but who also have very different fears and obstacles to overcome, finding love along the way.
I was thrilled to find Serena and Zade make various appearances in this novel along with Cynthia’s sisters, Katherine and even Charles, whom we met in Mine to Tarnish. I adore these characters was so happy to see them again. Lukas was an adorable match for Cynthia and the perfect balance of brave fighter and kind friend. They had a great connection and chemistry that I enjoyed witnessing very much. Waverly and Bethany have me both looking forward to their stories and after the jaw dropping ending Janeal Falor left us with that sees an enemy of the past return, I’m extremely excited to get my hands on future books!
Featuring plenty of beguiling characters and exciting action during the warlocks tournament, Mine to Spell is an excellent addition to this wonderful series that mixes romance with magic and has me ready to dive into the next book pronto. ...more
Mine To Tarnish is a rich, well written prequel to Janeal Falor’s stunning debut You Are Mine, that details the harrowing and exciting tale of Katherine prior to her being tarnished and before to her involvement in You Are Mine.
After the brilliance that was You Are Mine, the chance to experience Katherine’s story was one I couldn’t pass up. Even with her minor role in You Are Mine, Katherine was beguiling. As she swiftly became a true friend to You Are Mine heroine, Serena, it became clear that Katherine had her own story to tell and while as a novella, Mine To Tarnish isn’t the longest of tales, Janeal Falor manages to satisfy her readers desire to discover Katherine’s beginning in this fantastic short read.
In terms of prequels, Mine To Tarnish is quite satisfying. The story is fast paced and driven, and Falor manages to put a lot of action, angst, sadness and love into its pages. Admittedly, I feel as though you need to have read the first full length story in the series, You Are Mine, to really appreciate this glimpse into Katherine’s world. This is simply because Falor doesn’t go too heavily into her explanation of the traits and customs of this intriguing society, something that was detailed and explained in greater length in You Are Mine, rather preferring to focus on Katherine’s story.
I have to say, after reading Mine To Tarnish I have an even higher opinion of Katherine. Her ability to look on the brighter side of her situation in You Are Mine was always something I admired about her, but seeing her journey to get to that place and seeing some of the hard choices she made only made me appreciate Katherine’s quiet strength all the more. Here is a girl who chose things that no one else would have willingly chosen—that’s a very powerful thing given her standing in this harsh society that is a man’s world and I love that!
Fast paced and exciting until the very end, Mine To Tarnish features a lovely unexpected romance and hints of friendship. My only issue? I’m not ready to leave Katherine behind, ha! Rich, riveting and very, very enjoyable, Mine To Tarnish is a great addition to the Mine series that fans will not want to miss! ...more
You Are Mine is a thrilling debut by author Janeal Falor that had me hooked from the very first page!
Heading into this book I knew one thing....I loved the cover, but I wondered if the book it housed would live up to it's promises? Would it be as good as it sounded? Well, I have to say...it was, and then some! Catching me from the opening chapter, I have to say I was very impressed with this book. I've never read anything exactly like You Are Mine!
To begin with, the story is very well told, perfectly paced and exciting where need be. In all honesty, I very rarely wanted to put this book down and turned pages relentlessly, very much drawn into the story. The characters were very likeable and interesting to read about and I enjoyed figuring out the motivations and intentions of some. I admit there were a few plot developments I did see coming, but that didn't in any way make them less enjoyable to read about. Rather I found the anticipation at times to be too much!
Janeal Falor has created a world really different in You Are Mine, featuring a society where women are not only seen as lower class, but are actually considered nothing but possessions by their "masters". Obviously I've read quite a few books by now where the featured society hold little to no value for women, but there's often some kind of male relative such as a father, grandfather or uncle of our main character that breaks this mold and actually cares This is not the case in You Are Mine and it makes for interesting reading.
I thought all the characters in this story were well rounded and well thought out. From our main character Serena to her sisters, Cynthia and Bethany and her friend Katherine, to Councilor Zade and the quirky Waverly. They all had a fantastic dynamic that leant so much to the story.
I couldn't help but find myself entranced by Serena's plight. As our main character, it's impossible not to feel Serena's repression and fear, having grown up in a world where women are owned by warlocks. This entire story is nothing but a huge journey for her as she learns to trust herself, and more importantly, others. It's all a very big change for Serena as she slowly comes to understand that not every action will result in a punishment. From the very beginning it's evident Serena is a strong young woman, but she's also very nervous and often skittish around others, especially Zade. At times I wished she wouldn't second guess herself so much, but at the same time I understood why she did this. A lifetime of conditioning doesn't change over night, but that's not so say Serena doesn't come a long way over the course of the book.
Personally, I would have liked to deeper explore the society of warlocks that exist in this story, especially those of the Envadi, who proved to be more than they really were. I'd hate to think I'd give too much away, but the friendships that develop between Serena some of the characters in this book, as well as her blossoming "something" with Zade all made me want to keep on reading even when I knew the story was drawing to a close. Serena and Zade have a very nice relationship to read about, one that I felt came a long way over the course of the book, but that didn't progress too swiftly or two suddenly.
The ending races to a stunning climax that changes the very course of the book and rocks the story's society before coming to a swift, albeit great ending that leads to many possibly in the future. Janeal Falor has done a fantastic job blending action, danger and just the tiniest hint of romance in You Are Mine, guaranteeing that I'll be on the look out a sequel somewhere in the future. With a great story, great characters and a great overall feeling, You Are Mine certainly left me wanting more!
Angela J. Townsend’s debut novel Amarok is a richly descriptive tale of one girls fight for freedom and love, told against an Alaskan backdrop that is delightfully enjoyable!
Despite it’s slow pace, this book was surprisingly addictive and I easily read it in one sitting. It was well written and the lush world of the Alaskan wilderness provided a beautiful setting for the events of this novel. While it’s certainly not the best book I’ve read, nor did it blow me away, I found Amarok to be a really nice, enjoyable read. There were a few things I was unsure of in regards to plot, and at times I did struggle with the connection between Emma and Amarok that comes on so suddenly, but as a whole I easily found myself engrossed in this story.
Townsend tells of Native American tales as well as stories of Sharman and curses as she details Emma’s journey after being kidnapped by a reclusive and evil “mountain man”. Told in dual perspective, the short chapters revert back and forth between main characters Emma and the “wolf” Amarok.
As a heroine, Emma was decent enough and fit the story well. Strong and brave, with a tortured past and painful home life, Emma never gave up and was a fighter from the very beginning. I found I really adored Amarok and loved seeing things from his eyes, especially as a wolf. Townsend had written his POV very well and you can’t deny the anguish and frustration he feels being trapped as a wolf.
Admittedly, the bond that forms between Emma and Amarok stems a lot from the fact that they both have no one. Alone and lonely, both know only cruelty and the kindness and affection they find in one another connects them as they go through their tremendous journey. Honestly, I think the “love” they feel for one another, especially on Amarok’s side, comes on very suddenly but I still believe the bond they share, if not the love.
Overall, Amarok is an exciting read, one that left me wanting more! ...more
Dare You To is the sensational follow up to Kate McGarry’s debut novel Pushing The Limits and is as good as, if not better than its predecessor. Filled with nothing but pure emotion, desire and harsh, raw characters, Dare You To will made you feel and feel everything!
Kate McGarry is a literacy genius! Plain and simple. With a talent for creating real, believable characters that are easy to empathize with and with a talent for creating storylines that draw you in and never let you go, my goodness does this woman know how to break my heart!
It’s a beautiful thing to read a book like Dare You To. And a very rare thing too. In a time where one YA book flows into the next and storylines seem so similar, there’s something so spectacular about discovering a book, and series, that can rip you apart in its emotion. From start to finish, Beth’s story made me bleed. That’s the only way to describe it. Thanks in part to Pushing The Limit, I felt I already knew what kind of life Beth had, but as the events of this Dare You To unfolded, it became clear that things were worse than I expected.
Kate McGarry ripped every possible emotion from as I read this book. Told in dual POV, McGarry details the lives of Beth Risk and Ryan Stone, the skater girl and golden boy. Two very unexpected young lovers who connect so deeply, that every moment of their story held me captivated—in fact, I tore through the book in less than a day. One of the shining aspects of this book for me is that Kate McGarry in no way shys away from the harsh critical aspects of Beth’s life. She explores the impacts drugs can have on the relationship between mother and daughter, where the roles are reversed and the one meant to be doing the protecting is in need of protection themselves. When a sad individual needs their child to protect them, and deal with the beatings/and consequenses, simply because they aren’t strong eough to deal with it themselves. This is real. This is something I don’t doubt people deal with every day and McGarry makes you face it in Dare You To. And she makes you see.
As with the previous book, the characters in Dare You To were perfect. They were real and believable and incredible to read about. McGarry has created a great cast of characters in this series, all so different, all so flawed and yet that work together. Each one from Beth and Ryan to their friends Noah, Isaiah, Chris, Logan and Lacy, to the parental figures of Beth’s uncle Scott and Ryans mum and dad….they gave the book an authenticity that it really needed.
As the male lead Ryan is a fantastic character. He’s got a real personality, unlike many golden boys of YA literature and he’s actually quite strong in himself. He obviously has his issues, but together with Beth he begins to deal with them as he falls for the rough-around-the-edges skater girl who’s so much for than she seems. And speaking of…..
Beth. Beth Risk. Stop me if I’m wrong, but to me, Beth is one of the most incredibly portrayed characters I’ve read about. Ever. Beth is broken. That’s the only way I can put it. It’s very rare to come across a character so incredibly broken, and yet is unconditionally real. I know girls like Beth. I’ve never been one, but I’ve seen them. Girls from broken homes, where alcoholism and drugs run rampant. Girls who are labeled because of the bad choices they’ve made regarding boys and relationships….all in an effect to be loved. And feel loved. Yes. I liked Beth. Yes. I felt for her. Yes…..my heart bled for this girl as I read Dare You To. Kate McGarry has done a beautiful thing in writing Beth. Writing someone so flawed and afraid, and rightly so. The pain of a life lived like Bath could break anyone, so that’s way seeing things begin to slowly get better; seeing Beth start to trust, and love, felt so rewarding.
And as for Beth and Ryan together, well….I’ll be honest, when I heard that Beth wasn’t going to be paired with Isaiah, I was a little bit surprised. And disappointed. But you know what? After reading this book…I get it. I get it. I completely understand why McGarry wrote the series the way she did. Isaiah was…is Beth’s best friend, and they have a very deep connection. He was always there for her; the one she turned to when life was hard. He may have helped make the pain go away from a while, but he never fixed it. Being with him didn’t make the pain go away for Beth. Only Ryan, as surprising as it sounds, could do that. The love he had for her and the way he felt about her was the only thing that could make her feel worthy, that could make her feel good enough.
In all honestly I’m not sure my review does this book justice. Dare You To is perfect. It really is. There’s so much raw emotion and pain that litters the pages, and yet as the story unfolds and Kate McGarry allows her characters to find strength and happiness in one another, this book couldn’t be more of a pleasure to read.
Dare You To is an incredible deep, emotional read, yet fun and romantic too. The chemistry between the main characters burns and the story is electric. This is one contemporary romance you’ll regret missing out on. Trust me….. ...more
Poison Princess marks Kresley Cole’s sizzling debut into the YA genre, and with is electric romance, constant danger and unparalleled mystery, this post apocalyptic thriller is a far cry from any dystopian novel I’ve read before!
What a fantastic book this was! Considering this is actually my first Kresley Cole novel, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. Admittedly I had high hopes and luckily, what I discovered was a harsh, richly, descriptive dystopian with a stunning freshness and idea that stole my heart! Honestly, this book was addictive.
I truly don’t want to give away too many spoilers but the Acarna that Cole explores is such a fabulous idea. Cole’s personification of the Tarot cards was incredibly unique and very clever—I love it when authors strive to give us new ideas! I admit at times the non stop riddles and often strange comments by certain characters confused me but the mystery never let up and as question after question was raised so was my desire to discover the secrets of what was truly going on.
This book was undeniably gritty. While many dystopian’s are, Kresley Coles ability as an adult writer also began to shine through as some of the interactions between our main characters Evie and Jackson had an undeniably “adult” feel, especially on Jackson’s part. The setting was also quite interesting too, with the book starting out with a quite evident Cajun and Louisianan vibe.
I found Evie “Evangeline" Greene to be a really wonderful heroine of this story. Evie fit so well within the story and her voice was such an easy one to follow. From the abilities she’s had for many years and the anguish they’ve caused her to her desire to know what she is as the novel progresses, it’s impossible not to feel for her. While she’s very guarded and not quite ready to trust Jackson with her secrets Evie handles herself quite well for someone with an upbringing such as herself.
And as far as Jackson Deveaux goes, I really don’t know what to make of him. At times I thought he was a brilliant character and at others I wanted him to get eaten by a Bagman. Of course, in a world where so many male leads seem the same, I certainly appreciate what Kresley Cole has done with him, but at times it seemed like too much. That being said, Jackson was a Cajun boy through and through. From his outright sexy good looks to his accent and his pitiful upbringing, Jackson was rude, crude and just plain mean at times. I must say I got sick of his “me’s” and his “goan’s” real quickly, but there was just something under the surface of him that made me intrigued. He cares about Evie extensively, even if he has a funny way of showing it most of the times, but she’s obviously the most important person to him now.
As the book switches back and forth from before the “Flash” to after, the various time periods allowed for a very detailed look at our heroine Evie’s world. At first it seemed strange to me that we witnessed so much of Evies life before the world as everyone knew it ended but as the novel progressed and the dystopian aspect of the book came into play I really appreciated those glimpses of normality in Evie’s life. It allowed me to see her better as a character, and also witness her growth. It also explained the hostility between Evie and Jackson’s relationship.
I found it refreshing how Cole wrote the relationship between these two. Instead of having two characters meet in the middle of such a disaster and then have them form a straight away dislike of one another, as seen in a lot of books, these two had history from before the Flash. Their relationship was rocky from the beginning, so as they were forced to rely on one another and team up, it added a greater depth to their sometimes rocky friendship and growing romance.
And considering Evie and Jackson could never be more different, I appreciated seeing where they came from to where they were currently at. The wealthy, popular girl and the poor, Cajun hick....these two seem like the oddest pairing, but in the midst of despair, they begin to find something together. They struggled to stay on the same ground quite a bit (which drove me up the wall) and I hated the trust issues Evie had with Jackson considering how hard he tried to earn her trust but in the end they had a chemistry that I really enjoyed reading about.
Kresley Cole mixed dystopian adventure perfectly with romance and excitement in this book. It was the perfect balance and I was thoroughly interested the entire way through. The revelations revealed at the end of Poison Princess seem just like the beginning and as Jackson’s shocking discovery about Evie concluded the first instalment in the Arcana Chronicles, I’m early awaiting getting my hands on the next instalment to see where Kresley Cole will take the series next! ...more
Emily White’s debut novel Elemental is a fast, high stakes tale set in a distant galaxy that mixes mystery with action and leaves you wanting more.
Elemental was a really enjoyable book to read. A slightly short story, Emily White does a good job of drawing you in and enticing you with Ella’s journey. Personally, I was caught from the very first chapter and sped through this book. While I admit there are times where the story lagged and I got lost with so many different societies and planets, Elemental was a great way to spend an afternoon.
It’s quite an interesting world that White has crafted together. There are vast planets and numerous societies that litter the galaxy within this world. The information given throughout the book is enough to keep you up with the quick moving storyline, however I would have liked a little bit more back story into the workings of these societies. While things are revealed at the perfect time throughout Ella’s journey, there was always something else that I wished would be explained and because of that I struggled to connect with the world.
It was interesting discovering who and what Ella actuslly is and why she’s been imprisoned for so long, but I yearned for more information about the mysterious creature that Ella actually is. I’m looking forward to what Emily White reveals about this race of people in the next book and look forward to her expanding on their world and race.
The best thing about this book is truly our heroine Ella. Despite the horrible decade she’s experienced in captivity, Ella is a very kind soul despite her “Destructor” status for the most part and really just wants to be loved. Ella is a really interesting character to read about. There’s a real aura of fragility about her and she has an extremely vulnerable side to her, but despite it all, she manages to find strength when it really matters. Ella is essentially the “Destructor” and while I’m not going to give away any spoilers I will say that this often causes personally changes in Ella that contradict the Ella we’re used to seeing. What I find interesting is that despite her actions that are sometimes out of her control, Ella really does want to do the right thing; by herself and those she loves.
The characters fit well within the story and all play a very different role in Ella’s life. The people that Ella meets throughout the book all have an effect on the girl who truly has know one in the opening pages. The relationship Ella develops with her saviour Meir is rather instant, but no less endearing and is a sweet touch to the story. There are plenty of intriguing characters including Malik and Ranem, but none more so than Cailen, a young man similar to Ella who shares a mysterious past with her.
I found the start of a romance between Ella and Cailen to be sweet, but again, I yearned to know more about what they had together in the past. Cailen is everything you want in a male lead, but I just didn’t “love” him like I wished I could. Emily White is good at adding aspects to the story that you want to know more about and this is one of those aspects.
After a fast paced and eventful ending, one that featured pain and betrayal, I find myself excited to read the next book. I wonder what is in store for Ella next and what she’ll face in the next stage of her destiny and look forward to seeing what Emily White does with the sequel Fae. ...more
Thank you SO VERY MUCH to Simon & Schuster Australia for providing me with an ARC of this to read and review!
**READ in 2013**
Walking Disaster is tThank you SO VERY MUCH to Simon & Schuster Australia for providing me with an ARC of this to read and review!
**READ in 2013**
Walking Disaster is the sensational 2nd novel from Jamie McGuire and is the book fans have been waiting for--Beautiful Disaster in Travis's POV! And with all the scorching romance, intensity and passion Abby and Travis generate, this book does not disappoint!
To say I was excited when Simon & Schuster offered me the chance to be one of the very few lucky bloggers to get my hands on an ARC of this would be an understatement. Beautiful Disaster was an unexpected favorite of mine last year so I've been eagerly awaiting the publication of this Walking Disaster since hearing McGuire was writing it. Jamie McGuire once more proves what a talented writer she is with this book. Retelling the events of Beautiful Disaster this time through Travis's eyes, we're once more drawn into the raw, intense love story we fell in love with during the first book!
It goes without saying that I love Travis and Abby. Obviously, I already knew these characters heading into this book and I already knew what was going to happen, but Walking Disaster gave me the chance to explore them even more, especially Travis. Now, in no way am I going to give away spoilers--I already made a promise to myself that I wouldn't, but if you've ever wondered about the origins of Abby's not quite traditional nickname or even what happens after the final page of Beautiful Disaster turns, this is the perfect chance to find out!
One of the things that was a standout for me during this book was that McGuire doesn't shy away from the raw, gritty character Travis is. Nor does she change him unexpectedly just to please us, but instead stays very true to the flawed individual we met in Beautiful Disaster as we witness his fears and inner demons first hand. The true goings on inside Travis's head reflect quite accurately his actions.
It's through this honest and authentic insight that I saw his mistakes and his reckless actions through new eyes. I can't quite say this changed the way I think about him. Let's face it...I already loved the guy, but it certainly helped me to understand him better. Seeing the world as he saw it and seeing certain events unfold through his eyes and with his mindset allowed me to see an entirely different side to this story. Writing a book like this was certainly genius on Jamie McGuire's part! This is a chance book lovers dream about--the opportunity to jump into the head of our favorite male leads and McGuire certainly couldn't have done a better job!
Now, I must say I know there is always going to be a lot of debate surrounding this book. It's easy to look at aspects of Abby and Travis's relationship that are unhealthy and intense but in doing so it's easy to miss the really good parts. Yes, together they're insanely passionate and volatile to the point of being obsessive, but there's also something very redeeming about them as a couple too. Here are two individuals, each flawed and broken in their own way and who can be somewhat destructive together, but who also managed to flourish together in unexpected ways.
People make mistakes. It's human nature. It's who we are, but we grow, and we see people grow, becoming better versions of themselves, despite all the obstacles and their self destructive natures and that's when we're seeing something special. That's what Walking Disaster is about at it's core and it's because of this that I think Jamie McGuire has penned her highly anticipated follow up to Beautiful Disaster perfectly!