Author of the bestselling Angel series L.A Weatherly is back with Broken Sky, a powerful and exciting novel set in an alternate 1940’s that features a strong heroine, harrowing danger and plenty of suspense!
Broken Sky introduces readers to an almost dystopian like alternate 1940’s world, where American as we know it is non-existent. Instead the world is separated into different states and nations that operate differently and are run by different leaders. It’s a world where war is a past occurrence and nations instead battle over government and economic issues through a series of flights where opposing pilots engage in one-on-one air strikes against each other until one plane goes down—usually with the pilot parachuting out—with the other side winning the fight and the rights over whatever conflicts they were battling for. Each nation and their conflicts are overseen by a neutral party called the World for Peace.
Heading into this novel I wasn’t really sure what to expect. The description of the novel doesn’t give much away, but Broken Sky quickly drew me in. L.A. Weatherly presents a very vivid and authentic alternate 1940’s world in Broken Sky and was reminiscent of the movie Pearl Harbour—without the air attacks and huge loss of life. I was really impressed with all the different details Weatherly included to bring Broken Skies to life; the slang, the dialogue, the clothes etc. The very way of life for the characters was so reminiscent of 1940’s life but with an alternate twist. I also commend her on allowing females to be strong flyers and fighters, something that wasn’t always true for this time.
Our heroine in this novel is Amity Vancour, a Peacefighter—a pilot that flies for the Western Seaboard. Amity is very strong and personable. She’s not naive and is a really fighter. Amity has a strong belief in what she believes to be right and she fights whole heartedly for this. She comes across as guarded to those who meet her, but as we follow her throughout the story, it’s obvious she cares deeply.
The Western Seaboard’s greatest threat in Broken Sky is the Central States, led by a man by the name of John Gunnerson whose belief in astrology and the power of star signs sees him rule with an iron fist. In the Central States, those with bad star signs are labelled Disordinant and sent to correction camps and with a majority of the population of the Central States living in fear. Weatherly includes a villain in Gunnerson, a man whose dictatorial methods are a threat to all the other nations around him. Gunnerson has big plans for expanding his state and doesn’t care what methods he uses including espionage, bribery and murder.
Though Broken Sky predominantly follows Amity, we also see a portion of the story follow Kay Peirce, a Central States astrologer whose choices and predictions have harrowing effects on Amity’s life and those of the Western Seaboard. Kay doesn’t believe in astrology, but her intelligence and ability to read people keep her alive under Gunnerson’s watchful eyes. It’s really interesting to see how Kay’s predictions effect Amity; they never meet and they don’t know each other, but their lives are inexplicably intertwined.
L.A. Weatherly packs the story with a great cast of minor characters including many of Amity’s Peacefighting comrades and her love interest Collie—the boy who has always owned her heart, but whose disappearance changed something in her. Amity’s mother and brother Hal are also great additions and I’m eager to see whether their roles grow in the coming novels.
With plenty of suspense and unexpected twists, Broken Sky isn’t always predictable and features an ending so unexpected you’ll be left gaping. Fast paced and fantastically detailed, Broken Sky by L.A Weartherly is a unique dystopian style novel well worth a read that leaves me aching for more! ...more
Lynette Noni continues her stunning Medoran Chronicles with Raelia, an incredible sequel that gives it's predecessor a huge run for it's money in adventure, excitment and non-stop edge of your seat moments!
Alexandra Jennings is back for a second year at Akarnae Academy, school for the gifted and those with incredible abilities, once more stepping through a doorway to Medora and returning to the place where anything is possible. Having only just managed to escape the hands of the banished Meyarin prince Aven who wants to use Alex to open a doorway to his home of Meya in the first book, Alex is once again battling to stay ahead of the vicious immortal as she and her friends try to make it through their everyday classes at Akarnae. Yet Aven is relentless in his pursuit to return to Meya and as the danger escalades it becomes clear that nothing is as it seems and Aven's spies are everywhere....
Last year I was blown away by Akarnae. Lynette Noni's debut novel quickly became a favorite of mine and skyrocked me into an incredible fantasy world. Raelia continues on with our heroine Alex's journey and is without a doubt as good as the first book. Often a sequel doesn't live up to it's predecessor, but in Raelia's case it only manages to expand on an already incredibly vivid world and introduce readers to new layers of this dynamite series!
Noni had my complete attention from the opening page of Raelia. Alex is an amazing heroine to follow and her character one I simply adore. Alex is down to earth and very normal but also so very strong and powerful in her personality. I love that she takes everything in stride and uses intelligence and sass to get things done.
Alex has an incredible support base in the form of her friends, classmates and teachers at Akarnae Academy. All the characters I loved from Akarnae are back alongside Alex in Raelia, but Noni also introduces us to some new voices and new individuals in this installment. As Alex journeys into Meya, we have the pleasure of meeting some fabulous Meyarin characters I can only hope continue to appear in the series as well as the Medorian royal family whose connection to one of Alex's closest friends is more prominent than ever.
Raelia is spectacularly paced and detailed. Magically and beautifully depicted, Lynette Noni writes some fabulous fight scenes and battle situations, managing to weave humor and wit into the story alongside danger and the perfect hint of romance. Strong character relationships and clearly thought out circumstances make the story one you don't want to leave and plenty of unexpected twists keep you on your toes.
There is nothing about this novel I can fault and as Raelia races towards a thrilling ending, Lynette Noni continuously manages to draw me in, leaving me dreading the moment when the story ends. Rich, powerful and so, SO good, Raelia is a sensational sequel and continuation of a brilliant series--I cannot wait for more and I highly recommend anyone who hasn't picked up this series yet does so, or risk missing out on an amazing adventure!
Perfect for fans of Harry Potter, The Mortal Instruments and the Chronicles of Narnia, Raelia is a delightful adventure made of magic and brilliance!
Searching for Someday by Jennifer Probst is an electrifying romance that features sizzling chemistry, sexual tension and outstanding characters! Fun, fresh and addictive, this book is perfect for those who love Alice Clayton or a good rom-com!
Searching for Someday introduces readers to Kate Seymour and Slade Montgomery, two people who have very different views on love, but whose lives are about to collide with sizzling results. Kate Seymour runs a successful matchmaking company called Kinnections alongside her two best friends. Featuring a magic touch passed down through her family, Kate has the ability to know when two people are made for each other and with the help of different techniques and services Kinnections has to offer, has managed to bring love to the lives of many of her customers. Too bad the only person she can't find love for is herself......
Enter Slade Montgomery, a confidant, hot-tempered divorce lawyer and someone whose view on love is pretty much non-existent. Slade's beloved younger sister is Kate's latest client and he's determined to prove that Kinnections is the fraud he thinks it is. Yet what happens when the two meet and sparks erupt, pretty much literally between them? Can the matchmaker and the divorce lawyer prove they are the most surprising couple out there? Or will their fears see them lose out on the chance at love......
Boy, was Searching for Someday a brilliant read! Unexpectedly so. I jumped in headfirst with no expectations and Jennifer Probst caught me hook, line and sinker from the very beginning. Wonderfully told through both Kate and Slade's POV's, Searching for Someday was a highly addictive, electric read that smoldered with chemistry, sexual tension and had all the humor, romance and flair to make it gold!
Both main leads in this novel won me over from the moment I met them. They're both intelligent, successful people in their own rights and the chemistry that sizzled between them was fabulous. Sharp dialogue and banter litters Searching for Someday, and Jennifer Probst supports her story with a great cast of minor characters I'm already dying to learn about.
It was very easy to quickly come to care about both Kate and Slade and I have to give Probst props for including a tiny bit of magic in the story with Kate's ability, but not making it too overpowering. I much preferred focusing on Kate and Slade and their relationship together rather than anything else.
As such a powerful man, Slade practically oozed sexual appeal, and I have to say, I certainly wasn't immune. There's something so sexy about seeing a well put together, calm, calculated and restrained individual loose control and become a slave to their emotions and feelings. Kate was capable and smart and more than willing to hold her own against Slade. Jennifer Probst has created a dynamic pairing with these two and there was nothing I didn't love about them as they sorted out their issues and became better people for it, both individually and as a couple.
Expertly written and sooooo, so good Searching for Someday is a brilliant read and I'm already eager to continue on with the series and discover just what Jennifer Probst has planned for Kennedy, Arilyn and Gen! Fantastic read--definitely recommend! ...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!
Thicker Than Water is Brigid Kemmerer’s thrilling latest release and is an intriguing, near impossible to put down story of passion, mystery and murder with a little bit of the paranormal thrown in.
Thomas Bellweather is a shattered mess. His mother has recently been murdered; strangled in her bed while Thomas slept down the hall and he’s the prime suspect. Thomas knows he didn’t kill her, but in the town he and his mother just moved to so she could be with her new husband, everyone is sure Thomas is guilty….even if they don’t have the evidence to prove it. In a town seemingly brimming with cops, the only person who seems to believe Thomas’s innocence is Charlotte Rooker, and as the daughter of a cop and sister to three older brothers—all cops, Charlotte probably isn’t the best person to be Thomas’s friend---even if he can’t seem to stop thinking about her, or she him. Thomas wants nothing more than to find out who killed his mother, but as he an Charlotte delve into his mother’s past, what he discovers will change the course of Thomas’s world forever……
Have you ever read a book where you were totally absorbed, only to have a twist thrown in that left you feeling perplexed? Well if you have, then you can understand how I felt about Thicker Than Water. I absolutely loved the first half of the novel—Brigid Kemmerer has always won me over with her strong, powerful characters and Thicker Than Water is no exception, with both main characters Thomas and Charlotte wonderful individuals who were wonderful to read about. And yet there was something about the second half of the novel that left me feeling dissatisfied a little bit…..
I actually felt a little as though the paranormal element in this story wasn’t necessary. Thicker Than Water is incredibly engaging from the opening chapter, and both main characters are so well development and strong that the story could have really been told as a contemporary thriller and none of the power of the story would have been lost. The angst, the pain felt by Thomas as the whole world seems determined to convict him of murder is so overwhelming that as the reader you’re bound to follow the story through.
Charlotte and Thomas have a great chemistry together as a couple and Kemmerer includes, as always, a fantastically told family base. Charlotte’s brothers Matt, Danny and Ben may come across as controlling at times, but they clearly adore their sister and the cute moments shared by Matt, his daughters and his ever growing family only add to enhance the kinship clearly expressed. Personally I would love the chance to explore Ben and Danny a little bit; Ben was the perfect gentleman and Danny someone a little more uncontrolled—it would be fabulous to see the women who could bring them to their knees.
Maybe some of my issues with this novel stems from the fact that, as far as I know, Thicker Than Water is a standalone novel and I felt like so much of the story was left untold. The ending seemed rushed, and I didn’t get the closure to the story that I wanted. Personally I would like the chance to explore the world Kemmerer has introduced and get to know some of the other characters—especially Ben!
Mysterious and unsuspecting, Thicker Than Water is the addictive latest release by Brigid Kemmerer and is well worth a read!
Everything But The Truth is another wildly enjoyable instalment in the If Only series written by Mandy Hubbard and entrancing readers with yet again an endearingly sweet and enjoyable contemporary romance!
Holly Matthew’s mother is the new manager at a glitzy retirement home called Sunset Towers that caters to the super-rich with decadent taste and lots of money. Holly herself doesn’t mind the sweet retirees she sees every day—a perk that comes from having the nice little apartment she shares with her mum nestled in the middle of the estate—and enjoys interacting with them. Yet when Malik Buchannan, the impossibly gorgeous grandson of Sunset Towers latest resident mistakes her for the granddaughter of one of the residents and not the staff, Holly finds herself struggling to tell Malik the truth—especially as they spend more time together and Holly begins to realise that Malik isn’t the notorious party boy portrayed in the media…..
Mandy Hubbard is back with a second novel in the If Only series, having previously kicked off the series with Fool Me Twice. As with Fool Me Twice, Mandy’s writing is solid and fun and she introduces readers to a very likable main character in the form of Holly.
Everything But The Truth was a really fun book to read. It was easy and flowing and I found Holly and Malik’s romance endearing. This is the first novel I’ve ever read that centres on a retirement home in any way, but I really liked the atmosphere that Hubbard conveyed. I found that the couple of Sunset Towers residents we met were cute and I really enjoyed the way Holly appreciated them and helped out.
Holly had a unique personality and I must commend Hubbard for making an effort to make Holly different. She’s the only teenager I’ve read about who has such a love for antiques and who knows so much about art. Holly made me smile with her endearing ways.
The perfect way to spend an afternoon, Everything But The Truth is a quick and easy read and is guaranteed to make you smile. Definitely worth a read! ...more
Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson is a sweet, endearing and emotional story about second chances, the power of family and the hope that comes from making things right in the midst of the hardest of circumstances.
Seventeen year old Taylor Edwards has a history of running. Whenever things get hard, her flight response kicks in. Five years ago this saw her run away from her very first love, but when her father receives some devastating news, her parents decide it’s time to spend one last summer at the lake house they used to frequent all those years before. As Taylor spends the next few months getting to know her family like never before, she not only has the chance to re-connect and make amends with old friends, but has a second chance with the boy who stole her heart all those summers ago…..
Having adored Morgan Matson’s Amy & Rogers Epic Detour, I’m not so sure what led me to leave this book on my shelf for so long. I really enjoy Morgan Matson’s style of writing and her storytelling abilities. Second Chance Summer is a heart-warming and emotional story that is nicely explored and features love, romance, family and friendship---all kind of goodness I really love. It does have its sad and bittersweet moments, especially when it reaches its inevitable end, but Matson supports this with some really sweet and heart-warming moments too.
Though it’s taken me until now to read this book, I’m actually glad I waited until this point in my life. I experienced the loss of my grandfather this year and my experience was very similar to that of the main character in Second Chance Summer. I have to commend Morgan Matson for her realistic portrayal of Taylor’s father and what he went through. It’s an experience all too real, and made this book all the more beautiful to read.
Matson writes a worthy main lead with Taylor in this book, who really is just a normal teenager who makes mistakes and bad choices. Taylor is at a point in her life where she’s learning who she is, and I think Matson reflects this well. Taylor can be forgiven for her fears and for making mistakes—everyone does at some point, especially when she redeems herself as the novel progresses.
Supporting Taylor is a lovely cast of characters that give the story life and feeling. Taylor’s family, including her brother Warren and younger sister Gelsey get to know each other throughout the course of the book, and Matson throws some wonderful personalities into the mix during this story. Taylor’s first love Henry returns, as does her former best friend Lucy, Taylor and her family adopt a dog who provides comfort to her father, and the community around the lake house all bring colour to the story with different moments.
Featuring a heart-warming storyline and emotional moments, Second Chance Summer is a fun and fresh summer read and will appeal to fans of Simone Elkeles, Katie McGarry and those who love well told and meaningful contemporary romance!
Signs Point to Yes by Sandy Hall is a light, immensely enjoyable read that features genuinely likeable characters and a simple but entertaining plot!
Signs Point to Yes follows three different characters; Jane Connelly, a seventeen year old girl who finds herself taking on a summer job babysitting her next door neighbours’ little girls in an effort to avoid making collage plans; Teo Garcia, Jane’s neighbour and secret crush who also happens to be the best friend of her arch nemesis and someone struggling with whether to track down his biological father; and Margo Connelly, Jane’s seemingly perfect big sister who is struggling with the decision to come out as bisexual to her parents. All three must make big decisions, and as their lives continue to collide, all three discover how powerful friendship, family and accepting yourself can be…..
I went into Signs Point to Yes with open eyes and an optimistic spirit, and I’m thrilled to say that within the first few chapters, Sandy Hall managed to easily capture my attention. Signs Point to Yes was a really sweet, easy read. It’s the kind of feel-good novel you can’t help but love. Sandy Hall delivers some loveable characters, entertaining dialogue and sweet endearing moments. There’s romance, friendship and humour and plenty of unexpected one-liners that will bring a smile to your face.
As the two most focal characters, I very much adored Jane and Theo. They were genuine, easy to like and felt real. Hall gives them their own voices as well as their own individual demons, but brings them together in an entertaining way. It’s impossible not to love them, as well as the vast array of supporting characters Hall gives life to.
You’ll fall in love with Teo’s adorable little sisters Keegan, Rory and Piper, who as little girls are, are inquisitive and excitable and just downright cute. Teo’s best friend Ravi will bring a smile to your face with his over dramatic antics and Margo will win you over with her serious but supportive nature. There’s plenty of life and personality within this book to keep you smiling and following along with the characters.
Signs Point to Yes really does please with its feel-good aura, sweet romance and endearing characters. This may be the first book I’ve read by Sandy Hall, but I doubt it’ll be the last! Definitely recommend....more
A Mad Zombie Party is the fourth and latest instalment in Gena Showalter’s riveting White Rabbit Chronicles and is possibly the best book in the series yet. Featuring two tangible main characters and more action, romance and entertainment than you’ll know what to do with, A Mad Zombie Party is Showalter at her best!
After the heartbreaking and life altering events in The Queen of Zombie Hearts, Frosty Martin and Camilla Marks are two slayers who were left deeply affected. Frosty lost the love of his life Kat and now spends his days getting lost in booze and meaningless women to fight the pain her loss caused. Camilla made one regretful choice that saw her betray those she cares about in order to protect her beloved brother River. Having seen Anima callously kill innocents and hurt the very people Camilla hoped to protect, Camilla is determined to make up for her past mistakes that saw her cast out from the only family she’s ever known. Camilla will do anything to make up for past sins and Frosty will never forget the part she played in Kat’s death, but what happens when they’re thrown together and soon find themselves learning more about the other than they could ever have expected…..
I have to say, I was soooooo gutted when I realised that Kat and Frosty weren’t going to miraculously get their happily ever after, but now having finished A Mad Zombie Party I get it. Maybe I’m just excited about the prospect of future books and the possibilities that Kat and Frosty having their own individual HEA’s holds, but I also feel that Frosty and Camilla really did work.
Gena Showalter explores Frosty and Milla both so beautifully in this story. Through their back and forth POV’s—a first for this series—we’re able to see them like never before. My eyes have really been opened to the amazing person Frosty is, and it was wonderful to get to know him outside of being Cole’s best friend and Kat’s boyfriend in A Mad Zombie Party. He’s someone I love a whole lot more now, although I certainly always admired his devotion to Kat in the past.
Camilla on the other hand is a character we only just met in the last book, and she didn’t make the best impression having betrayed our slayers…..but boy do I LOVE her now. Milla really is a fantastic young woman. Yes, she made a mistake--a big one, but as we discover in A Mad Zombie Party, she really was between a rock and a hard place and felt like she had no other choice. Milla is someone who has had a hard life and features a lot of scars, but she’s actually a real sweetie underneath and I loved seeing Gena Showalter highlight her insecurities, but also make sure we knew how strong Milla had been to get through recent times. Seeing Milla try so hard to be worthy of redemption and to make up for her past mistakes was so admirable to witness and I loved her even more for it!
Unlike with our previous main couple, Gena Showalter takes her time building Frosty and Milla as a couple. There’s a lot of animosity there on Frosty’s side towards Milla and I really appreciate the way Showalter slowly built up their relationship over time. Allowing them to get to know each other first gave them the chance—especially Frosty if I’m being honest here—to let go of their past hang-ups. Yes, perhaps it seemed a little fast for Frosty to move on from Kat at first, but when you see the journey he undertakes to become ready to be with Milla, it all makes sense.
A Mad Zombie Party is seriously addictive from the opening chapter and if you’re anything like me you’ll find it hard to put down and even more difficult to forget. Gena Showalter serves up another sensational story and a worthy romance and leaves me still dying for more and hoping against hope there may be a possibility of a spin-off series in the future featuring the world Kat and Emma inhabit or even a White Rabbit Chronicles instalment featuring Kat and River!
Sunkissed is the adorable third novel in Jenny McLachlan’s Ladybirds series and this time stars Kat, who finds herself on an unexpected adventure of a lifetime in this fun summer read.
Fashion lover Kat can’t believe she’s being sent to spend the summer with her flighty Aunt Frida in Sweden. She’ll be stuck on an island in the middle of nowhere with no electricity and no power. That means no phones, no TV and *gasp* no hair straightener! Kat isn’t sure she’ll survive the summer and foresees a miserable four weeks, but once on the island, Kat is surprised to discover some outdoor fun with the other locals and quickly begins having a better time than she could have ever imagined!
Sunkissed is a really light and fun book to read. If you’ve ever wanted to get away on an island escape, now’s the perfect chance to do so….through Kat. Jenny McLachlan is back with another light-hearted tale perfect for YA readers and creates a sweet, quirky and quaint read. As with all the books in this series, you’ll breeze through this novel with ease.
Those heading into this book can be forgiven for thinking Kat is a flaky, often self-obsessed teenager who over dramatizes things and spends too much time on her phone….because Kat is a flaky, often self-obsessed teenager who over dramatizes things and spends too much time on her phone, but boy is she so much fun. And you know what, she’s fifteen……….and she loves her friends and make-up and boys and fashion. She’s actually a sweet, caring person who loves her friends and family despite everything, and I wouldn’t have Jenny McLachlan write her any other way.
I actually think Sunkissed focuses the least around romance than any of the previous books do in this series. Sure, Kat and Leo have a little thing, and they are sweet, but McLachlan manages to make this novel more about Kat, her friends and her family than anything else. The aura of adventure within Sunkissed is complimented by some quirky Swede characters including Nanna, Otto and Kat’s Aunt Frida. Oh, and Pearl steps up as a true friend to Kat in this novel; beginning to truly win me over for the first time and make me excited about the prospect of her story.
Light-hearted and perfect for a summer afternoon or a light bit of reading fun, Sunkissed was a nice addition to the Ladybirds series and I for one cannot wait for the fourth and final instalment featuring Pearl! ...more
One is Sarah Crossan’s latest release and is a unique and beautiful tale of two sisters and their journey as conjoined twins.
Told in verse, One unfolds through the eyes of Grace, who alongside her sister Tippi make up a set of conjoined twins. At sixteen, both Grace and Tippi have been content with their existence, despite the difficulties they face in their day to day lives. Yet when lack of money sees their family no longer able to afford home-schooling, the girls are forced out of their comfort zone and must venture out into the world. Attending a normal high school opens their eyes and allows them opportunities they never had before; real friends, life experiences and maybe even love……
One really was a powerful, emotional and thought-inflicting, novel. Having read a few books by Sarah Crossan to date, I was excited about reading One, especially considering the concept is quite different and the fact it’s not what I would normally read. The prose within One is unlike anything I’ve ever read before, and though I worried heading into the novel if I would struggle, I found it easy to read and found myself flying through the story.
The idea of conjoined twins is something Sarah Crossan explores really well within One. Crossan gives both twins real personality and highlights their natural human flaws. One of the things I really appreciated about in this novel is that both girls really aren’t these meek individuals. They’re strong in the sense they understand their strengths and their weaknesses and know what they’re capable of.
Grace has a very powerful voice. It’s raw and real and doesn’t hold back. The girls are going through something really difficult and as different aspects of their lives crumble you really feel for them. It’s almost like they can’t catch a break, but the fierce way they keep their heads up and keep moving forward only endears them to you more.
Throughout One, it’s impossible not to hope for a happy ending. Grace and Tripp are beautiful teenagers making the most out of their circumstances. You really hope they’re going to make through everything Sarah Crossan throws at them and Crossan delivers a very powerful and emotional ending ...more
Josephine Angelini is back with the second novel in her Worldwalker series, Firewalker, and continues to expand the already intricate world she introduced in Trial by Fire; taking readers on another magical adventure where not everything is as it seems.
After the events of the last novel, newly discovered witch Lily Proctor finds herself back in her own world….only she hasn’t returned alone. Her head mechanic and boyfriend Rowan has returned with her, having refused to let her go whilst she was on the pyre. Though Lily would love to forget everything that happened while she was in the alternate universe, her alter ego Lillian refuses to allow her to do just that; reaching out to Lily and even sending someone after her. With no choice but to return, Lily, Rowan and a new bunch of mechanics journey back, putting in motion events that will change the way Lily, Rowan and the Outlanders will view their world forever…..
Having enjoyed Trial by Fire, I was thrilled to discover that Firewalker more than lived up to its predecessor. Sometimes sequels fail to do so, but this is not the case with this novel, as Josephine Angelini expands on her already detailed world and adds another layer to the characters, mythology and creatures within her series. Loyalties are questioned and the motives of key characters are explored in a different light throughout Firewalker; especially Lillian.
Considering all that she has done, and will continue to do, we finally come to understand the reasons behind Lillian’s harsh actions and inexcusable behavior in Firewalker. And in thrilling fashion, Angelini manages to blur the line between good and evil; making you contemplate just who are the good guys versus the bad guys. Angelini makes you question the importance of doing things for the greater good, something we see her character of Lillian dealing with throughout the story.
Our main character Lily truly has grown throughout Trial by Fire and Firewalker. Towards the end of this second instalment, Lily reads very much like a seasoned woman, as opposed to the unsure teenage girl we first met. I like the growth in her and how Angelini showcases the differences between her and Lillian, while also expressing how very similar they are. This book really shows the power choice and free will can have on a person.
Alongside Rowan, Lily also takes on some new mechanics in Firewalker, including the “other” Tristan from her home world and characters Breakfast and Una. I loved the dynamic between these three together with Lily and Rowan. They really cared deeply about each other and I thought Josephine Angelini did a great job with the romance, friendship and camaraderie's in this novel.
The idea that the Woven are not as simple as they appear is something Angelini highlights in this instalment and if any of the discoveries we’ve made so far and the hints that have been dropped are anything to go by, then there is a lot Angelini has up her sleeve. And I for one am looking forward to discovering what that is.
Exciting and action packed, Firewalker is passionate, but not without its losses and revelations. Leaving readers at a critical moment Josephine Angelini sets us up excellently for the next novel; ensuring that readers like myself will be dying to get their hands on the next books as soon as possible. ...more
Ink and Bone is the latest release by best-selling author Rachel Caine and introduces audiences to a unique and carefully detailed world that is unlike anything I’ve really seen.
Imagine a world where the Great Library of Alexandra was never destroyed. Where knowledge is everything and those who control the Great Library have almost complete control over society. Books are highly valued but strictly controlled, and though freely accessible, anyone caught with private books face the harshest of punishments. For Jess Brightwell, this world is a reality. And as the son of a black-market book smuggler, he knows the dangers that come from owning books better than anyone. Yet in a world on the brink of war, Jess finds himself being sent to the Library to vie for a converted position as a scholar and soon discovers that the Library holds more than vast knowledge; it also holds dangerous secrets that those in power will kill to protect……
In all honesty, Ink and Bone is a difficult book for me to review. Though I found it incredibly detailed, well thought out and clearly very complex, I also struggled heavily with it at times; especially in the beginning. Ink and Bone starts out very slow, but slowly begins to pick up about halfway through. I never found myself completely sucked into the story, but I did plod along and mostly enjoyed the book.
Rachel Caine has created a very unique world within Ink and Bone. Set in an alternate world of 2025, the world within the story is a mix of ancient and futuristic times. Featuring an aura that brings to mind Ancient Egypt and Victorian London on occasion, Ink and Bone takes readers through many different locations. Vividly described, after the initial difficulty I had, I did enjoy learning about this unique world Caine has created.
I’ll be the first to admit, I don’t think I fully comprehend everything Rachel Caine has introduced within Ink and Bone but I understood enough to read the book without too much trouble. The world of the Library is very detailed and complex. There is a range of different positions, terms and devices unlike anything I’ve seen before that give Ink and Bone a real edge. I think you need to persevere with this novel and concentrate to understand; especially in the beginning. However Caine does increase the pace as time goes on.
Maybe I’m coming along as too harsh, because despite the misgivings I had, there were times when I found myself very involved with Ink and Bone. Caine does a solid job writing through the eyes of main character Jess. His voice reads well and I actually really liked him as a character and individual. Those Jess meets during his time at the Library were really intriguing. Those vying for a place as a scholar really appealed to me and even Wolfe (who remind me as Professor Snape if I’m being honest!) began to win me over. Personally I think the characters were the real saving grace for me as I began to struggle with this novel.
Ink and Bone races towards an unexpected, but exciting ending, that actually has me wanting to read more. For all it's faults Ink and Bone steadily progresses to become a novel worth reading and I do look forward to seeing what will happen to Jess and those he knows next!
I Made Lattes for a Love God by Wendy Harmer is a novel that in my opinion is best suited to the younger teenage girl who enjoys gossip, friendship and a whole lot of drama.
I Made Lattes for a Love God sees readers meet Eleanor "Elly" Pickering, a fifteen year old girl who discovers herself in the centre of a media frenzy when her mother lands a job looking after the promotional aspect of a Hollywood movie starring a popular "it" boy and they decide to shoot the film at Elly’s high school. Throw in a bunch of secrets and some paparazzi mayhem and Elly soon finds herself in the deep end without a paddle…..
Wendy Harmer is a well-known Australian comedian. I feel like I’ve grown up seeing her face on tv or hearing her voice on radio, so the chance to read a story by a home-grown talent was really exciting. But in all honesty, I Made Lattes for a Love God probably wasn’t the book for me. I persevered because I can be a stubborn thing and I felt as a review novel I had to finish it, but I didn’t enjoy the story all too much. Was I Made Lattes for a Love God a bad book? Not necessarily, no. It just wasn’t for me. If I’d read it maybe eight or so years ago I may have appreciated it a bit more, but for me at this point in my life, I really struggled.
Heading into I Made Lattes for a Love God I had no idea there was a previous novel called I Lost My Mobile At the Mall featuring Elly. When I realised about three chapters in, I was concerned, but found this didn’t really effect my ability to read and understand what was going on. If anything, I Made Lattes for a Love God is more a companion novel than a strict sequel.
Personally I found the main character Elly to be incredibly difficult to like. I’m not trying to toot my own horn or anything, but I was always mature for my age and as such can’t imagine acting the way Elly acts in this novel. She was immature and childish, and although there was growth in her, it wasn’t enough to redeem her in my eyes.
When a main character is difficult to like, it can really effect the rest of the novel and this was the case for me and I Made Lattes for a Love God. After a new chapters I found myself growing tired of Elly’s friendship and relationship dramas. Everything felt overly dramatic and unnecessary. From interactions with her sister to her reactions to her best friend’s involvement in the movie---I really struggled. Elly seemed vapid and childish and just not someone I enjoyed following.
For me the saving characters were Rosie and Tyler, both of whom I liked but felt we didn’t see enough of. Overall I Made Lattes for a Love God was just a hard book for me to get through and not something I would be quick to recommend.
Crystal Kingdom marks the third and final book in Amanda Hocking’s Kanin Chronicles and is a fast paced, heart-pounding and exciting way to end what has been a sensational series!
After the heartbreaking death of her friend Kasper in Ice Kissed, Bryn Aven is on the run. Having been blamed for his murder alongside the Skojare Prince and branded a traitor, Bryn is facing charges of treason should she return to Doldastam. Teaming up with Konstantin Black in an unexpected alliance, Bryn soon begins digging into her Queen’s past when tragedy strikes the Kanin royal family and Queen Mina takes control of the kingdom. The malicious and deceptive nature of the Queen push Bryn and those she knows to take drastic chances, even if it means going to war against the Kanin people, practically guaranteeing that not everyone Bryn loves will make it out alive…..
Having now read Amanda Hocking’s Trylle series, Kanin Chronicles and half of her Watersong quartet, I can easily say that the Kanin Chronicles is without a doubt my favourite! I fell in love with Bryn and all her friends quite quickly in the first book and over the course of the other two, only came to be more invested in their journey, lives and actions with the turn of every page. Crystal Kingdom is well written, detailed and incredibly fast paced. It sees Bryn make some real discoveries, with the mystery behind Queen Mina’s actions finally revealed. It’s an emotional read with Bryn having to make tough decisions, and not everyone we know and love are guaranteed to make it out alive.
Bryn has been such a great character since the very first novel and I’m glad Amanda Hocking has still managed to grow her as an individual whilst still keeping her in many ways the same headstrong, fighting and brave young woman we first met in Frostfire. Hocking has put Bryn through a lot over the course of this series and while she doesn’t so much as thrive she certainly manages to hold her own. Honestly, Bryn is seriously kick-ass and I love that she’s capable, independent and has plenty of personality. Bryn is the kind of heroine you can easily get behind in these kinds of fantasy novels!
I’ve enjoyed getting to know many of the other characters in the series and am going to miss them. Bryn for obvious reasons, but also Ridley, Konstantin, Ember, Tilda, Linus, Bryn’s parents, Queen Linnea and others…..They’ve been wonderful to follow and I’ve enjoyed seeing their different dynamics and interactions within the story. Konstantin himself actually became one of my favourites despite his rocky history and I was glad to see him redeem himself somewhat in Crystal Kingdom.
There’s so much going on within Crystal Kingdom. I loved stepping out of the Kanin world and exploring some of the other tribes. The Omte and Skojare were very interesting and I would love to read more about Queen Linnea and King Mikko of the Skojare if that was ever possible in the future!
Richly described, set and paced, Crystal Kingdom was a worthy conclusion to what has been a wonderful series. Amanda Hocking brings to all to a thrilling close that sees the story end, not without consequences and loss, but also with endless hope…..
Rebel of the Sands is Alwyn Hamilton’s debut novel and is a rich and vivid mingling of American and Arabian fantasy and is full of magic, mayhem and monsters. Romance blooms, dangers grow and a rebellion is on the rise……
Set in the desert nation of Miraji, sixteen year old Amani is from the dead-end town of Dustwalk. An orphan who is facing the possibility of being married off to her uncle, Amani has plans to escape and venture into the city her late mother spoke of, but first she must earn the money to do so. Entering a shooting contest disguised as a boy, Amani finds herself drawn to a mysterious foreigner named Jin who is wanted for treason and who is hiding a big secret. Relying on Jin is the last thing Amani wants, but when her plans sour, escaping with him is her only option; the start of a journey Amani could never have expected but that will change her world forever……
I was very impressed with Rebel of the Sands. The whole story was well written, the characters strong and the world building spot on; the lands within Rebel of the Sands were lusciously told and described. For a debut novelist, Alwyn Hamilton clearly has a good grasp on her world and mixes plenty of fabulous mythology and monsters with danger, action and romance.
The nation of Miraji is a desert land in the vein of Arabian nights, and even Disney’s Aladdin. Sun, sand and the desert make up the harsh and unforgiving world our heroine lives in where mystical beasts lurk and creatures of legend come to life. Djinn, ghouls and demons mix with more unique creatures known as Nightmares, Skinwalkers, Buraqi (powerful immortal horses made of fire and sand) and Demdji (the children of Djinn and mortal mothers). Nothing is as it seems in this barren land ruled by a Sultan who conspires with the neighbouring lands military and who fights to keep his exiled son from returning to Miraji and taking power.
Told through the eyes of Amani, Rebel of the Sands is a fast paced novel with plenty of entertaining scenes, characters and situations. Amani, who often disguises herself as a boy, is a strong leading character who grows a fair amount in this first novel. A talented shooter, Amani takes risks and dares to want more from life than marrying her uncle. In the beginning of the novel she’s slow to trust and quick to put herself first (mainly due to fear and her survival instincts) but as the story progresses she begins to trust and care for Jin, and to fight for something bigger than herself.
Rebel of the Sands is often an unexpected read, with enough twists and developments to keep you on your toes. Hamilton does a good job setting the stage for the rest of the series with you as the reader left wanting to know what will happen now that certain revelations have come to light.
Fast paced and exciting, Rebel of the Sands is an enjoyable read that will satisfy those who love seeing magic mixed with romance, action and danger. Ending well, but with plenty of options for the sequel, I look forward to seeing what Alwyn Hamilton does with the series next! ...more
Ice Kissed is the second book in Amanda Hocking’s Kanin Chronicles and is another brilliantly told story full of excitement, mystery and danger. Fast paced, mysterious and with just the perfect hint of romance, Ice Kissed is a wonderful follow-up to the first book in this series!
After the events of the first book, Bryn Aven is struggling to reconcile what she’s always believed with the doubts she’s starting to have. All Bryn has ever wanted was to serve her King and become a part of an elite group of warriors. Now Bryn doesn’t know who her loyalties should lie with and even worse, the Skojare Queen Linnea is still missing, something that upsets Bryn greatly. When Bryn gets an unexpected a lead on Linnea’s whereabouts, she and Ridley set out to find the missing Queen, only to slowly discover that things are even more complicated than they first appeared. Soon it becomes clear that determining who’s good and who’s bad may not be as easy as they first thought and with time running out and the threat from Viktor hanging over the Kanin people, Bryn finds herself right in the middle of everything once more and soon realises that doing the right thing may cost her greatly…..
I honestly really love this series! I think Amanda Hocking has created an even more beguiling world than the one she created in Switched, where Kanin politics, betrayal and deception all weave together. The story is endlessly mysterious and hides a lot of secrets, whilst still managing to be fast paced and exciting. There’s danger around ever turn and I never know what’s going to happen next, nor do I know the motives of many of the characters or where their loyalties lie. Hocking continues to keep me on my toes, even as I become more determined and eager to see Bryn uncover the truth behind all the strange goings on in both the Kanin and Skojare kingdoms.
I really like Bryn as our heroine. Personally I think she’s someone you can really get behind. She’s surer of herself than Wendy was in the previous series, something I’m putting down to age and experience. As a nineteen year old woman, Bryn has seen enough of the world and experienced enough to be able to take care of herself. I love the fight in her, and how much she strives to uncover secrets and get to the very heart of things—Bryn doesn’t let things go easily; something that possibly gets her into more trouble than she needs, but definitely makes for fabulous reading.
I’m adoring all the characters Hocking includes within the Kanin Chronicles to support Bryn so far. Bryn has a great bunch of friends including Ember and Tilda and even the different royals intrigue me in different ways. I really enjoy her romance with Ridley and the dynamic they share. I like the way Hocking has built on their relationship and where she has them heading. Admittedly, they’re relationship won’t be the easiest one considering he is her boss, but I’m personally looking forward to seeing how everything works out for them in the final book.
The cliffhanger ending of Ice Kissed leaves me breathless for the next novel and really excited to see how Amanda Hocking concludes this series. Ice Kissed was fast paced, entertaining and a wonderful read and I have no doubt this series is going to go out with a bang! ...more