Threats of Sky and Sea by Jennifer Ellison is a vividly written fantasy novel that weaves different elements of magic together with danger and forbidden romance in a well told story that will leave you eager for more!
I’ll be honest; it did take me a little while to find myself truly absorbed by Threats of Sky and Sea. That’s not to say there was anything wrong with the story or that it started out slow, because it didn’t; it just took a little while for me to become comfortable with the setting and the main character. Once I reached about a quarter way through, I did find myself beginning to become very invested in our heroines story and her plight; reading along eagerly.
Perfect for fans of Maria V. Snyder and Sarah J. Maas, Threats of Sky and Sea was a richly written and depicted book. Author Jennifer Ellison pays great attention to detail and doesn’t disappoint in describing and vividly depicting her world. Ellison’s writing is very beautiful and she does a good job with her world building. I think the reason I was a bit put off in the building is that Ellison does jump straight into the story and at first I was unsure of the individuals she features who wield and have control over different elements.
Threats of Sky and Sea follows sixteen year old Breena Rose, a young village girl who lives in a land ruled by a harsh and controlling king. Bree thinks herself a humble barmaid, living and running a bar with her father, but when three of the kings soldiers come looking for her father, Bree realises that everything she knew about herself isn’t exactly truth. Taken prisoner by the king, Breena soon begins to learn the truth as she becomes involved in politics and the kings sinister plans for their neighbouring country.
I must say I liked that our protagonist and heroine, Breena Rose was different. Bree was feisty and free-thinking and an outside the square character compared to all the others that accepted the king’s rule and didn’t fight out against all the horrid things he chose to do.
I thought Jennifer Ellison did a great job with her supporting characters also. I enjoyed their different dynamics and the different elements they brought to the storyline. Aleta and Caden were standouts as well as Tregle and our reigning villans, the King and Lady Katherine.
Threats of Sky and Sea has plenty of revelations to keep you entertained as the story steadily progresses, including a shocking ending that will change the very course of our heroines life. With Threats of Sky and Sea a rich fantasy tale and the first book in what looks to be an exciting series, I’m ready to head into the next instalment. (less)
Rules of Survival is a fun and flirty story by Jus Accardo that features an exciting story woven together with danger and mystery and topped off with characters who have a delectable chemistry!
This is my second novel by Jus Accardo (I’ve previously read Touch) and I have to say I enjoyed it immensely. The concept is catchy and I really liked the characters and the chemistry they displayed. Their dynamic is my favourite kind to read about and I thought Accardo did a good job with the story; mixing mystery with excitement and danger. The situations our main characters kept finding themselves in were really entertaining to read unfold.
Rules of Survival follows Mikayla “Kayla” Morgan, an eighteen year old girl who is on the run and wanted for murder but whose life takes an interesting turn when she is caught by an arrogant and cocky, albeit attractive, bounty hunter named Shaun Denver and in order to keep her from escaping, handcuffs them together. As those really responsible for the murder attempt to silence Kayla once and for all from ever attempting to clear her name, Shaun and Kayla must form an uneasy truce as the gunmen hot on their tail close in when Shaun does the one thing Kayla might actually kill him for…..loses the key.
I will say I really liked Kayla in this book. The entire story is told from her point of view and I found her to be nice to follow. Kayla is quite street wise and the years spent living, and running, from the law with her mother have taught Kayla how to evade and escape, giving Kayla some serious survival skills. This is a girl who knows how to survive and how to plan ahead, using situations to her advantage. And yet it’s been a hard life, and now without her mother Kayla is lonely and ready to go on the straight and narrow; something that makes you feel for Kayla when you think of how hard her life would have been.
She may be capable, but Kayla certainly meets her match in Shaun. The cocky and arrogantly sexy bad-boy turned bounty hunter is a lot more than he appears and despite their differences the two bond as they attempt to solve the difficult circumstance they find themselves in. As Kayla and Shaun get to know each other, their truce of circumstance soon blossoms into something more; with grudging respect and tolerance soon paving the way for understanding and friendship and soon it becomes harder and harder for them to deny their mounting feelings for one another.
Jus Accardo does a great job keeping the tension between Kayla and Shaun intensely high throughout the entire novel! The attraction is there from the beginning, but as the story slowly unravels, things between Kayla and Shaun only get hotter; with the chemistry and dynamic making for some excellent dialogue and tension filled moments between them. This novel has some NA aspects, where Kayla and Shaun’s physical relationship is concerned, but Accardo, again, does a good job here.
Rules of Survival is fast-paced and mysterious, and just a really good read. You’ll find it hard not to become invested in seeing Kayla and Shaun learn the truth, and find it impossible not to be thrilled with how Jus Accardo writes this entire novel. Definitely worth a read! (less)
Black Abaddon is the second book in the Vulcan Legacies series by Sasha Hibbs and is in my opinion even better than the first! Rife in danger and darkness, Black Abaddon is an addictive and heart pounding story with more shocking twists than you’ll know what to do with!
I have to say, Black Abaddon blew me away and I thoroughly enjoyed this book; more so than even the first instalment! Black Amaranth was a lot about learning about the world and meeting the characters. Hibbs focused a lot about introducing her beings and the histories of the characters, whereas in Black Abaddon, we’re forced to witness the evolution of some of the characters as the storyline steadily progressed.
At this point in time I really feel like I know the characters and Hibbs only enhances this as she writes some big developments into her storyline involving our main character Ally and those around her. Personally I really like all the characters in this book, admittedly some more than others, but regardless I think each brings something very different but intense to the character dynamic within the story.
The differences between all the characters, from their species to their personalities, to their relationships, are something I find very interesting in this series. Everyone from our main character Ally to Jessica, Dave, Eli, Lucy, Brandi, Uncle Argyle, Parthenia, Elizabeth, the gypsies, the Nashoba and especially Marik in Black Abaddon all managed to have an effect on me; I’m invested in all their relationships and lives. Even those we’re just meeting, like Mariah and the Nosforatu Nation intrigue me and those who aren’t what we first thought like Marik have me needing to know more.
At the end of Black Amaranth, Ally suffered a tremendous loss and is still reeling from this in Black Abaddon. She’s in pain and we see a great deal of agony from Ally in this book. Heartbroken and struggling to go on, Ally really struggles with her self belief in this book. Hibbs still continues to keep us on our toes, as Ally’s destiny is still unknown and revelation after revelation changing what we know about her and what she’s meant to do.
Relationships between some characters change, including the one between Ally and Marik. He may have been the big evil in the previous book, but Sasha Hibbs pulls a rabbit out of her hat with him and manages to explore him with some shocking revelations that will change the way Ally, and we see him in Black Abaddon. Honestly, this guy just breaks my heart! I’m so head over heels for him and completely absorbed in his own story. Marik is a very layered character. He’s made mistakes, but everything he ever did was for his family and those he loves; he was used by a great evil, and is now unable to move on.
I’m going to be honest here…I never felt Ally and Michael’s relationship in the first book. I wanted to, but I didn’t. I feel for Marik though and the way he feels for Ally. He truly cares about her and it saddens me that she doesn’t quite feel the same. She loves him, but not as deeply as he cares for her. I do wonder what Hibbs has in store for their relationship. I’m not really a fan of any love triangles, especially when a heroine seems set on one person, but I do actually love Marik. I think he deserves some happiness!
Black Abaddon races towards a jaw-dropping conclusion that is in no way expected. Honestly, I’m shell shocked by how the novel has concluded. Hibbs throws in some unexpected developments, but none more so than the final chapter! Believe me—Black Abaddon will have you begging for more!
Son of Set is the second instalment in Kelsey Ketch’s rich Descendants of Isis series and picks up almost instantly where the first book left off, again drawing the reader into a story where romance and attraction blend together with Ancient Egyptian gods and their ways to create a tantalizing and fast paced story you’re sure to love!
The Descendants of Isis series has been really fun to read so far. Personally, I really loved the first book and found I enjoyed Son of Set as equally as much. As a lover of all things Ancient Egyptian, Ketch appeals to this side of me that adores exploring their ancient myths and ideology; managing to take something so lush and weave it together in a modern setting with likable characters.
Son of Set is told in the third person, with the both Natti and Seth our focal points. Seeing the story unfold through both their eyes is an enlightening experience at times. We see both their individual struggles and fears, and I found it really interesting to see the others perception of certain events. Ketch does a good job writing conflicting characters that are deeply layered; especially where Seth is concerned and I loved struggling with my own perception of Seth and his actions.
Natti is a very likable character and she’s always been a strong one to follow. I truly like her as she is, but it was interesting seeing a different side of her in Son of Set. The abuse she suffered in her short time at the hands of Seth’s father Sean has had quite an impact on her physique and she is a very fragile young woman at the beginning of the book. Obviously this changes over the course of the story, but Natti struggles with whether or not she can truly trust Seth. Her questioning over his intensions and his ability to control her emotionally are something that are quite a focal issue for her. And really it’s quite understandable; Natti has strong feelings for Seth, physically and emotionally, but how much is actually her as opposed to what he makes, and sometimes forces her to feel?
The conundrum that is Seth O’Keefe continues to intrigue me in this book. Seth is one of those characters where it would be so easy to dislike him based on some of the things he does to get his way; either by force or coercion, but at the same time, the internal struggle he puts himself through make it really hard to do so. Seth has grown up his whole life holding himself in higher regards than the mere mortals around him. Those of influence in his life, especially his father, are cruel and manipulative; uncaring about others and constantly taking their free will away from them in the name of their god Set. And Seth’s always been told this is alright. Is it any wonder he continues to struggle as he does, at times giving in to his darker nature?
It’s not until Seth began to care about Natti as more than a mere sexual conquest in the first book that he began to question the world around him and go against what he’s been taught his whole life. Seth’s still making mistakes and still seems to fall into his old patterns at times, but I honestly feel like he’s trying. And it’s this attempt to better himself that tends to win my good graces—I just really like that Seth is so complex. It makes reading about him more powerful and exciting. I feel like I struggle along with Seth and sometimes want to scream at him when he makes a wrong choice, but as Seth’s decisions are becoming more and more for Natti’s benefit, I’m loving Seth more.
It goes without saying that Natra and Seth have a romantic relationship throughout the series, but this is something they struggle with a lot. Natti’s internal battle over whether or not she can trust Seth makes it difficult for her to accept Seth’s constant advances. Seth knows what he wants---Natti—and doesn’t shy away from trying to win her affections. Granted sometimes he doesn’t go about things the right way, but Seth truly cares deeply for Natti and may already be in love with her. Natti on the other can cares for Seth, but spends a lot of her time afraid what she feels isn’t real.
Personally, I love the tension and attraction these two exhibit together and I honestly feel when you strip everything all back and take away all the unnecessary issues they face they’re a great couple. Ketch likes to keep us on our toes with this will-they-or-won’t-they thing they have going on, but I can’t wait to see this resolved indefinitely.
The sexual aspect and tone of Son of Set is a much darker aspect to the story than anything else and I’m not sure if I like it. I understand it’s inclusion by Ketch and think it is clever to have her characters feature such a sexual nature but at the same time the dark attitude of some of the characters doesn’t sit well with me. Many of the male characters, mostly the Sons of Set have so little regard for women; they’re cruel and merciless; turning women senseless and using them for their own sexual gratification. This is rape in so many ways and I can’t get over the unease I feel when reading about it.
Sexual issues aside, Son of Set is a fantastic read. The characters are likable and the storylines endlessly intriguing. Kelsey Ketch’s ending of Son of Set was just plain cruel though. I mean, really?!?! How can it end like that?!? Seriously! I’m not going to give any spoilers away, but to race through a heart stopping and tension filled story just to have it end in the manner in which it did is so very cheeky. I’m very much looking forward to the next instalment and if you’re a fan of Ancient Egyptian tales or want something different then I highly recommend this series! (less)
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! (less)
A well depicted steampunk novel set in the Wild West during the California gold rush, Steam and Sensibility by Kirsten Weiss is a detailed and authentic feeling steampunk tale that blends murder and mystery with excitement and just the perfect hint of romance!
Steam and Sensibility is described as steampunk with paranormal suspense, and although the paranormal aspect wasn’t overly there and prominent like I expected, I still enjoyed this story. Personally I wouldn’t head into the novel expecting a focal paranormal aspect; because it’s rather a small, minimal undertone to the rest of the story. And yet I feel this small hint instead complimented the book and allowed other aspects to shine.
Following nineteen year old Englishwoman Sensibility Grey, who moves to San Francisco after the death of her father to live with her estranged uncle, I will be the first to admit that it took a while for me to truly become absorbed in Steam and Sensibility. There wasn’t anything wrong with the story; it just took a while until my attention caught. That being said, I breezed through this well depicted story and by halfway, I was thoroughly caught up in the mysterious goings on our heroine found herself in involved in.
I found the setting for Steam and Sensibility to be a perfect blend of Wild West and British high class. Cowboys mixed with English noblemen and women in a setting right out of the old west that featured lovely hints of steampunk amongst the story. The plotline within Steam and Sensibility was very mysterious and exciting once we got into the very heart of things.
As we’re introduced to a bunch of different characters, all with their own plans and agendas, I found that following Sensibility was quite a nice experience. Obviously she is a typical young English woman; cultured and a bit sheltered but Sensibility is also extremely intelligent and this is something that sets her apart from others. With an inventor for a father, a love of tinkering with things is something she appears to have inherited and as the novel progresses this becomes more evident with the way she approaches things. Personally, I really like this about Sensibility and thought she was a nice heroine; the perfect blend of fragility and innocence with bravery and unexpected strength. Sensibility grows quite a lot throughout the novel, although she still has a long way to go.
Throughout Steam and Sensibility we are introduced to a range of unique and different characters, including the rash and biting Miss Jane Algrave; a government officer who doesn’t play by anyone’s rule and the enigmatic and proud Mr. Night; a young lawyer who after a disastrous initial meeting, manages to set Sensibility’s heart a flutter, although not without a few difficult moments. As Sensibility learns who she can trust and who is out to deceive her, I really liked determining who was lying and out for themselves as apposed to noble and good.
Steam and Sensibility introduces us to an intriguing steampunk world that I honestly believe author Kirsten Weiss has big plans for. The introduction we have is sufficient for this story but I foresee a lot of world building and development in future stories.
Rich and proper, but with a western twist, Steam and Sensibility is an entertaining read that has me ready to read the next instalment! (less)
Reflection Pond by Kacey Vanderkarr is a lush and deeply magical tale where slight hints at violence and politics weave together with magic and glamour to create an alluring, riveting and at times romantic read that found me easily losing myself within its story!
Following seventeen year old Callie, I must admit I found myself very taken by Reflection Pond. The cover is stunning and the excitement within the story starts from the opening chapter when our heroine quite literally falls through into another world. Personally I’m a big lover of faerie stories but heading into Reflection Pond, though I adored the cover, I wasn’t sure what to expect from the book. Diving straight into the story when Callie falls through a seemingly normal pond and into the stunning faerie city of Eirensae, I found Reflection Pond to be a beautiful and beguiling read!
The world Kacey Vanderkarr details in Reflection Pond was colorful and vivid and I was pleased by the character dynamic Vanderkarr incorporates between Callie that those she meets within Eirensae. Admittedly the chemistry and dynamic Callie shared with Rowen was the highlight of the book for me, but I was also entranced by the other aspects of the story and the characters Callie meets as she begins to find her place within Eirensae, and in life.
Told both in Callie and Rowen’s POV’s, I really appreciated being able to see things unfold through both their eyes. I loved having the chance to experience both their thoughts and feelings. Callie was a very interesting heroine to follow; it becomes quite obviously from early on in the story that she is a haunted individual and has had something very traumatic done to her in the past. I liked that Vanderkarr gave her some substance instead of having a heroine who has never experienced a difficult day in their life. Though we don’t yet know exactly what happened to Callie, I can certainly make a good guess, and it’s clear it still has a deep effect on her.
I really liked Callie; she was feisty and genuinely had a good heart and I found her lovely to follow. Callie comes a long way in the small space of one book as she comes to accept Eirensae as somewhere she belongs. With the powerful abilities she has and the importance she has in the future of Eirensae, I can’t wait to see how Vanderkarr develops her further.
Callie finds a wonderful match in Rowen, the male lead of Reflection Pond and Callie’s constant pain in the butt. Rowen is sharp, sarcastic and extremely guarded. He’s arrogant, brooding and has a shield up around himself to keep people from getting close. He fights people off with snarky comments and biting attitude. Though he’s a fierce fighter and brave warrior, his attitude has him coming across was a bit of an ass to all those around him. Just the way he likes, and needs. it. However Kacey Vanderkarr leaves us readers with no doubt in our minds that Rowen is honorable, courageous and an amazing person.
Scorned by those around him and treated as an outsider even though he does everything in his power to fit in, I found it no wonder that Rowen acted as he did. His actions relayed a troublesome young man who didn’t care about anything at all and preferred to be a loner when in reality being inside his mind showcased how deeply he wanted to be a part of Eirensae, and how much he yearned for people to accept him for what he was.
All the minor characters in this book were wonderful, but as I previously mentioned Callie and Rowen stole the show for me, as they were no doubt meant to. Interesting individually, together they took it to a whole other level. These two had great chemistry and energy together and I loved the dynamic Vanderkarr explores between them. They give the story that extra spark that makes every interaction between them thrilling and addicting!
Reflection Pond was wonderfully written with Kacey Vanderkarr detailing a very riveting world with sensational characters. Racing towards an exciting ending that opens up a brand new chapter to the story; I’m beyond excitedly looking forward to the next book to continue Callie and Rowen’s journey! (less)
Swimming with unique and different mythology and ripe with romance, Uncovering Cobbogoth will be perfect for those who love a good adventure!
In all honesty, Uncovering Cobbogoth was a bit of a mixed bucket for me. Heading into the story the archaeological aspect really appealed to me as did the sense of adventure the description promised. Unfortunately I don’t think Uncovering Cobbogoth completely lived up to my expectations. It was a good read, it was. Something was just missing for me; that special extra something that takes a good storyline and decent characters and makes it so much more.
I was impressed with author Hannah L. Clark’s ability to think outside the square in Uncovering Cobbogoth. It was very obvious she had a strong desire to create something unique and different, something she marginally does well, but there were times when this story fell flat for me. That being said, there were times where this book really shone. Clark’s writing was beautifully detailed, especially her careful descriptions of Cobbogoth, the magical and ancient world our heroine finds herself discovering throughout the story and the lush mythology she uses to support the storyline.
Told through the eyes of Norah Lukens, Uncovering Cobbogoth sees Norah delve into the magical and ancient world of the Cobbogothians. After the shocking and brutal murder of her uncle Jack, her only family, Norah finds herself piecing together the clues of her uncle’s past whilst learning the secrets of Cobbogoth; her uncle’s lifelong obsession.
Norah was a likable heroine; basic but easy to follow. She was brave where need be, asked questions, queried things and fought when she had to. I liked her, I did, but I felt like she was missing that extra something to take her from being a good heroine to one that knocks you off your feet. Still. She got the job done.
Norah has plenty of secrets to uncover in this story and I liked how Hannah L. Clark kept me on my toes as we uncovered things. I enjoyed being able to piece things together as Norah did and figure out who was friend and who was foe. I admit, with the complicated lore I was confused a couple of times as everything was difficult to wrap my head around at times. The motivations of some characters and their true natures were intriguing to uncover and I liked that Clark managed to surprise me when certain loyalties were revealed.
There’s a sweet underlining tone of romance between Norah and her best friend James that compliments the story. Norah and James are good friends have a sweet romance, something Clark builds on and gives importance within the story.
Featuring a fast paced storyline that kept me marginally entertained, Uncovering Cobbogoth is rife with secrets and action. I may be persuaded to pick up the second book!
Stop Dragon My Heart Around by Susannah Scott is fun and tantalizing PNR that weaves together romance and sensuality in this dragon-shifter read that is quite fun!
As the second book in Susannah Scott’s series set in Las Vegas and featuring dragon shifters, Stop Dragon My Heart Around was a really fun and enjoyable read. The title may have been cheesy, but Stop Dragon My Heart Around is a well written and excellently paced story. The characters were likable and have a fantastic chemistry and I’m already ready to read the next installment.
I will admit, heading into this book I wasn’t actually aware that it was a second book in a series, but having said that, I think this can easily be read as a standalone novel. Stop Dragon My Heart Around really does stand on it’s own merit, and Scott does a good job explaining her world for those who might not have previously experienced it.
Featuring a bunch of Dragon Shifters who own and operate the extravagant and lush Crown Jewel Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, I’m already a big fan of Scott’s characters. The main characters in this book were wonderful to read about and had all the connection and chemistry I could ask for, but the minor characters also stood on their own and already have me eager to read their stories.
Told through the eyes of casino operator and fire dragon Leo Ryan and casino hostess to high rollers and Native American firecracker, Tallulah "Tee", Stop Dragon My Heart Around focuses on Leo’s perusal of Tee, the human employee he is strongly attracted too, but who he knows he shouldn’t want because she isn’t his fated dragon mate and the woman who has secretly loved him for years. When the fate of Tee’s tribe is threatened, events lead Leo and Tee to finally give in to the sizzling connection that simmers between them and soon their relationship shines.
Leo and Tee were wonderful to read about. Their relationship was built on years of friendship that simmered with attraction and sees the two give into the desire they share for one another. Leo was strong and sexy and really a good guy. He was fierce and daring and deeply cared for Tee. Tee on the other hand was stubborn, sweet and finally went after what she wanted. Basically, I just really liked these two and together they were excellent.
Susannah Scott introduces us to a bunch of different characters in this series and perfectly explores Tee’s Paiute Native American heritage amongst the story. I was impressed with how she wove the big lights of a Las Vegas casino in with the Las Vegas desert and Tee’s people; it was a really great setting that complimented the characters well.
High in romance and featuring a very charismatic set of characters, Stop Dragon My Heart Around is a fantastic PNR that will leave you wanting to dive right back into this riveting world! (less)
Ten Tiny Breaths by K.A. Tucker is a beautifully written and gorgeous story of life, love and loss. With magnetic characters and a strong storyline, this is a stunning debut about the power of forgiveness and the healing possibilities that moving on can bring.
As someone beginning to develop a real love for New Adult fiction, I'm always on the lookout for brilliant new NA tales to devour and while I was uncertain about what this story would bring, I have to say I was very much blown away by Ten Tiny Breaths! And in saying that, having now read this story, I can see why K.A. Tucker is making a name for herself in the NA genre. Her storytelling is wonderful; her writing strong but beautiful. Tucker took a very emotional situation and explored the effects it had on the life of her main character and those around her.
Following twenty year old Kacey Cleary, a young woman still haunted by the tragic loss of her parents, best friend and boyfriend at the hands of a drunk driver, Ten Tiny Breath explores the difficulty Kacey and her fifteen year old sister Livie still face four years later. Fleeing with her sister and escaping from a dangerous family situation to Miami, Kacey is still understandably haunted by the loss of those she loved in an accident she managed to survive herself but that left her tremendiously scarred, both physically and mentally.
Kacey is a very strong character to follow. She's very down to earth and normal, with a lot of sass and spunk, and is without a doubt wonderful to follow, but she's also very fractured. Something more evident with the turn of every page. Kacey has trust issues by the truckload and keeps a shield up around herself to keep from getting hurt. Though deep down Kacey cares strongly and loves deeply, she projects a tough girl exterior to the rest of the world and fights to keep people out. Kacey has a lot of hard truths to face in this book, especially when she slowly begins to come back to life thanks to the help of an egnigmatic young man and a surprising bunch of people who help to want her live again.
There wasn't a single character that I didn't fall in love with during this book! Obviously Kacey shines as our main character, as well as Trent as our male lead and love interest, but K.A. Tucker does a fantastic job giving her supporting characters real substance and life in Ten Tiny Breaths. Everyone from Kacey's sweet younger sister Livie, to their strong and surprising next-door neighbour Storm and her darling daughter Mia to adult club owner Cain and bouncers Ben and Nate managed to worm their way into my heart. Even minor, minor characters such a Officer Dan, landlord Tanner and Dr. Stayner impressed me; bringing so much life and colour to the book with their character dymanics and beautiful bonds.
Now, I refuse to give away spoilers, but the storyline Tucker explores with Kacey and Trent was the icing on the cake in this book, and so very well done. Honestly Trent is sexy as hell and he and Kacey have a wonderful chemistry. As a NA tale, you expect there to be a sexual aspect to the story and there is, but Tucker instead focus more on the romance and the connection between Kacey and Trent--something I found very refreshing. Obviously, these two are together physically within the story, but the way Tucker writes it allows us as the reader to explore the more connecting parts of their relationship than just the sex. Trent and Kacey were very sensual and they sizzle up the pages--the sexual tension is perfect, but the deeper connection they share and the way in which they help the other heal is what stole me.
Sexy, sensual and deeply moving Ten Tiny Breath is a brilliant read. Wit and sassy dialogue blend perfectly with beautiful characters you'll be sure to want more of. K.A Tucker has impressed me with her debut novel and has me ready to being the next book ASAP! (less)
Jessica Shirvington's latest release Disruption is a phenomenal tale of corrupted leaders and shocking secrets; exploring the destruction that relying on technology can bring in this science fiction thriller that weaves high stakes danger and riveting suspense with passionate love and unexpected friendship!
I have to say.....Disruption is a sensational read! Honestly. I almost have no words to adequately describe how much I loved this book. This may be the first Jessica Shirvington novel I've read to date, but her sensational writing and suburb character development so early on had me sucked in and incredibly addicted to this story! Disruption was perfectly paced and detailed, with plenty of shocking twists and turns that I didn't see coming. Jessica Shirvinton pens a brilliant heroine that made reading this story a brilliant experience and I was extremely impressed with the originality of Disruption and it's engaging storyline.
Following eighteen year old Maggie Stevens, Shirvington details a riveting society within Disruption where every individual is fitted with an M-band; an electronic wristband that monitors everything from time to heart rate, and allows people to access money as well as communicate. In a world so reliant on this one piece of technology, their most important use is to determine everyone's "match". In Disruption, we learn that when an individual reaches the age of eighteen, their M-band is upgraded to include Phera-tech; technology that allows the wearer to "rate" with those they come into contact with using pheromones produced in order to determine whether they are compatible or not. Those that rate high--70% or over, are deemed to be good matches, while those who rate lower are not. This is how people determine who they have relationships with, all the while hoping they will come across their "true match", the one person in the world with whom they rate 100% and are meant to be with. Though not everyone ever finds their true match, instead choosing to be content with someone they rate highly with, everyone hopes to find the one person they're meant to be with.
I was so very impressed with Jessica Shirvinton's concept within this story. It's so brilliantly explored, and very original. It was fresh and explosive and I thought she did an endlessly brilliant job exploring the corruption and devastating relying on technology had on the free will of those within Disruption. In this world where everyone relies so much on their M-band, there is a darker side to this society, a fact Shirvinton deliciously explores. With M-bands monitored by the government and the company that created them, the Mercer Corporation, there are cases where individuals rate negative with at three people in a month long period. These individuals known as negs are seem to be a drain on society and are severely dealt with, taken away into rehabilitation camps"
Featuring a fresh and creative concept, Disruption wouldn't have been as half as good as it was without an amazing main character to compliment the storyline and we certainly found that in Maggie. I adored Maggie from the moment I met her in this book and fell in love with her even more with the turn of every page.She's such a strong character and her voice so easy to follow. I found Maggie to stubborn and daring and incredibly brave. Smart, but calculating, Maggie is in no way perfect and she knows it. Willing to do whatever it takes to save those she loves, Maggie can be selfish and brash, but as you come to learn her story, you can't help but respect her. The thing I loved most about the character Jessica Shirvington has written in Maggie is that even though she's tough as nails, the act and tough exterior she puts on really is just that, an act. Maggie is haunted by her choices and though she makes them, struggles more and more throughout the course of the book.
Personally effected by the darker sides of the society she lives in, Maggie is on a mission. A mission to save someone who was taken from her and she's not about to let anything get in her way. That is until the key to her years long plan manages to worm his way under her skin and slowly into her heart......In order to rescue the person she loves, Maggie must rely on Quentin Mercer, heir to the M-Corp empire, and unwitting pawn in Maggie's schemes. What starts out as a way to extract Intel soon turns into something unexpected and deeper, as Maggie and Quentin form a grudging alliance, that sees Maggie open Quentin's eyes to the dark underground and true going ons of his family's company.
As Maggie expertly manipulates Quentin, the relationship that develops between the two is sensational to read about. Sweet, but passionate, their relationship is a slow simmering flame that burns brighter and brighter as they slowly test one another and come to rely on the other in a way neither expected. As different as they are, Maggie and Quentin compliment each other perfectly and as they work toward different goals, the chemistry that sizzles makes for some exciting dialogue and believable romance.
Excellent world building and pace make Disruption an addictive and beguiling read. You'll find Disruption hard to put down and Jessica Shirvington skillfully builds on every moment in this layered and surprising story to leave you breathlessly wanting more. Starring a kick-ass heroine and an electrifying storyline, Disruption shapes up to be one of the must-reads of the year and is a brilliant start to what promises to be a sensational new series from Shirvington! Mark this on your to-be-read lists, ladies and gentlemen--you won't regret it!
Cursed is Trakena Prevost’s debut novel, and the first in her new Guardian Chronicles. Detailing a magical world of action and danger, Cursed explores succubae and witch magic in a fast paced and gripping storyline that is a great start to a new series!
Personally I found Cursed to be an enjoyable read. I enjoyed Prevost’s concept, and considering I haven’t read many books where succubae feature, I enjoyed having the chance to explore them in this book. Adequately written and deeply action based, Cursed features a bunch of great fight sequences and follows heroine Jasmine "Jazz" Watkins and her battle against the evil succubae known as Suecai who prey on humans and absorb their energy. As a Dorgai—a non-lethal succubae, Jazz it one of the only things that stands between the Suecai and the innocents they prey on.
Having spent her life learning to train, hunt and kill Suecai, Jazz is lethal and has a personal vendetta against the Suecai; something that does manage to get her in trouble from time to time, but with the help of her best friend and comrade Khan, Jazz manages to thrive. Until a Suecai leader decides to turn Jazz into the one thing she despises…. one of them, and Jazz’s only chance is to branch out on her own and hunt down the person who cursed her to begin with.
Reading the story through Jazz’s eyes was an exciting experience. Jazz is a stong capable young woman and is really quite deadly. She has a sharp tongue and attitude and uses this as a blade. I really enjoyed the diversity in Cursed and liked that our heroine is a coloured woman. Honestly I don’t think there enough main characters with this kind of heritage and have to applaud Prevost for not shying away from this
I felt this story continued to move forward well and that Prevost showed enough of her world to keep me entertained, but I really feel like this is only the tip of the iceberg and that there’s still a lot more to see. As Jazz and her best friend/love interest Kahn delve into the magician’s world and that of the Suecai, Prevost ensures her readers will want to know more.
Overall Cursed is a good introduction to a promising new series and I look forward to reading more! (less)
Waiting For Prince Harry by Aven Ellis is a very fun and flirty novel that entertain from beginning to end and will have you wanting to find your own Prince Harry!
Waiting For Prince Harry was a downright fantastic read read. Flirty, fun and addictive, this book was very much a good rom-com; the kind of novel that would make a fabulous chick flick! Introducing us to Kylie Reed, a twenty-four year old designer, Waiting For Prince Harry follows Kylie’s journey to love when she quite literally falls into the lap of her very own ginger-haired hunk. As someone who secretly crushes on Prince Harry, Kylie is surprised when this mystery man manages to give the Prince a run for his money in the looks, attitude and charm department and soon finds herself realising the right person can bring out the best in her.
Eeeep! When I first heard about the premise for Waiting For Prince Harry I knew I had to read it. As someone who simply adores this particular royal (forget William; I’ve always wanted Harry!) Waiting For Prince Harry sounded right up my alley…..and I have to say Aven Ellis has done a great job with this story! Personally, I sped through this book, and could hardly put it down. Basically I wanted to keep reading and reading until the very end.
Though the writing may be basic, the characters and the chemistry they share in Waiting For Prince Harry shine from the very beginning! Main character Kylie Reed is a very normal young woman with a heart of gold. She’s a bit of a homebody and would prefer sewing and baking and watching movies at home over partying and clubbing any day. Kylie is happy to file all her dreams away "for the future" until she meets oh, so sexy Harrison Flynn, famous hockey player, redhead and dreamboat. Sparks fly and soon the two find themselves diving headfirst into L.O.V.E
Kylie was a great main character; she was likable and nice and so down to earth. It was easy to relate to her and put yourself in her shoes. She was the kind of girl you couldn’t help but like and end up vying for. Harrison on the other hand….what a character! This guy has me all weak in the knees and swoony. Harrison Flynn was an honest to goodness, good guy. He had money, fame and status but the things that mattered to him were the smaller things in life. He was funny and charming and endlessly sexy. As a hot-as-hell ginger and star athlete, Harrison has it all physically, but it’s his attitude and personality that won me over in this book. He really was a perfect all-round gentleman; certainly giving Prince Harry a run for his money as the most alluring redhead out there!
As soon as Kylie and Harrison meet, sparks life. I adore these two together, I really do! They have so much chemistry that every interaction between them is rife in attraction and tension. The dialogue between Kylie and Harrison smart and flirty, and Ellis keeps them witty and sassy together. They build such a strong relationship, and even though things move fast it never seems forced or rushed. They have their ups and downs, but as a couple they manage to better each other and it's so beautiful to witness. They have a magical relationship that is so beautiful and sweet--a girls dream!
Featuring a sexy romance, delectable dialogue and an addictive story, Waiting For Prince Harry is a brilliant contemporary read! (less)
Black Amaranth is the first book in the Vulcan Legacies series by Sasha Hibb and weaves together danger, darkness and the power of love and friendship in this unique twist on the traditional angelic tale.
I have to say, Black Amaranth was a real roller-coaster of information and mythology for me. Author Sasha Hibb’s impressed me with her different take on vampires, angels and werewolves in this book. I honestly feel like Hibb’s has made a very real attempt to take something we’ve all seen so many times and shake them up. And she does a decent job in doing so.
In Black Amaranth we are presented with a number of different beings: Seraphs; angels, Blaxxmiths; the result of Seraph’s breeding with mortals, Nosferatu: vampires, and werewolves. We also have gypsies making an appearance too. Weaving them all together, Hibb’s introduces us to Ally, a seventeen year old teenage girl who shockingly learns she is actually a Seraph, an angelic being, and more importantly is one that was long ago prophesized to either save the world or destroy it.
Hibbs also goes to great length to detail the history of the beings within her world, and while I appreciate this, it also left me very, very confused at times. So much sits on our heroine’s shoulders and as we learn just who, and what, she is, the way in which Hibbs explains her heritage and role within the prophecy had me very confused at times. I think its brilliant how everything is interconnected, and Hibb’s reveals things exactly when she should for maximum effect, but even as the first few chapters of the story ended, there are still a few parts where I don’t think I completely comprehended what is going on.
That being said, I did enjoy the story. Ally is a decent main character and the story progresses nicely. It felt a bit rushed in the beginning and towards the end, but Sasha Hibb’s managed to hold my attention regardless. I like the supernatural elements mixed together with the strong themes of love and friendship in the book. Ally has some true friendships and I loved the romantic elements Hibb’s has added in. Personally I didn’t quite feel the connection between Ally and her love interest Michael, but her best friend Jessica’s love/hate relationship with warrior Eli, as well as the connection shared by their siblings Dave and Lucy has me all excited to see where they would go.
Overall Black Amaranth is a worthy read. Hibb’s mixes all the elements for a good supernatural read together with some unique lore. Plenty of shocks and twists will keep you on your toes, as well as the discovery that no one is as they seem. Black Amaranth ends on a cliffhanger that shakes everything up that has me eager to read the next book! (less)
**spoiler alert** Thank you to YA Bound Book Tours and author Rebekah L. Purdy for providing me with a copy of this in exchange for an honest review!...more**spoiler alert** Thank you to YA Bound Book Tours and author Rebekah L. Purdy for providing me with a copy of this in exchange for an honest review!
The Romeo Club by Rebekah Purdy is a really cute and easy read, full of endearing friendships, humor and romance.
The premise of The Romeo Club is really quite simple; pretty, popular sixteen year old Delyla Denson has it all; awesome friends, hot-as boyfriend and is quite happy with her life....until she gives her geeky older brother a makeover to help him catch the girl of his dreams and then quickly gets roped into making over his friends as well. Welcome to "The Romeo Club" where Delyla teaches the guys how to act, talk, and be cool around girls. What entails is a lot of fun, laughs and disaster as this teen girl who harbors a secret "nerdy" side finds herself falling for her brothers best friend Trey, a guy who is also currently using his new found self to win over the beautiful girl of his dreams.
The idea may be simple, but there's no denying The Romeo Club is extremely catchy! The writing is basic but fitting and as a closet nerd, Delyla is a real nice heroine to read about; easy to like and follow. I may not have always appreciated her methods--hello sabotage--but I certainly appreciated Delyla's desire to admit her feelings and then fight for the guy she loves. I like the idea that the popular girl fell for the geek.
The guys in this book are just so sweet and geeky that you can't help but love them--from Delyla's sweet older brother Drake to nerds Kevin, C.C and of course Trey; all will make you smile with their "geekiness" and just want to give them a hug. The romance between Delyla and Trey is lovely and sweet, and I did feel their chemistry with their friendship a solid foundation that Purdy perfectly builds on.
Overall The Romeo Club is just a good wholesome read. The book isn't necessary long and once you start you be hard pressed to stop before you reach the end; quickly racing through this really fun and cute tale. (less)
While We Run is the sequel to Karen Healy’s When We Wake and is a fast paced and action packed follow up that sees Healy continue to evolve the storyline and push the series forward.
The first book in this series, When We Wake was a really enjoyable read for me. Set in a futuristic and almost apocalyptic Australia, this series follows Tegan Oglietti, a teenage girl who died, was cryogenically frozen and then brought back to life in 2027, as well as Abdi Taalib, a Djibouti citizen on scholarship to Australia whose world is turned upside when he meets Tegan. Together these two uncover a shocking government conspiracy that sees them on the run and fighting for their very lives.
While We Run was a very fast paced follow up to When We Wake. Healy introduces the next stage in her storyline, with While We Run a very different tale than its predecessor. Whilst When We Wake introduced us to the characters and their circumstances and this futuristic Australian world, centering around Tegan’s adjustment to this new world she finds herself in, When While Run instead focuses heavily on the political events and the impact secrets kept by the government have had on their people.
Unlike the first book which was told through Tegan’s eyes, While We Run is detailed from Abi’s POV and sees Hearly explore a very intriguing concept within While We Run. Featuring an Australia that has closed off its borders to refugees; Healy explores this contemporary topic with a subject matter that is very much a focal point in our world today. Healy makes you think; about morality and mortality with the government in this series exploring different options including cryogenics and immigration to distant planets in an effort to solve the overpopulation and lack of resources problems they seem to be incurring.
Our characters lives have changed drastically in While We Run, and as the reader being inside Abdi is a big change of pace from the first book. While Tegan was brash and led with her emotions, Abdi is practical and thinks with this head rather than his heart. Careful and calculated, Abdi has been shaped and moulded by his mother to be the perfect little future political candidate of his home land of Djibouti. Although he is known as a “thirdie” Abdi is actually quite cultured and pampered, and his intelligence and charm have gone a long way to help him during his time in Australia. Until he and Tegan found themselves in the clutches of the Australia government, paraded around and forced to sell The Ark Project as everyone’s best solution that is.
Thanks to the extreme torture at the hands of his handler Diane, both physically and mentally, Abdi is now a very different person and truly struggles at times. It was refreshing being inside Abdi’s head but it also really made me think as his “selfish” desire to just get home to his family warred with those around him who really just wanted to continue fighting as part of the Save Tegan Program. Just what is selfish? Right and wrong seem to blur as lives are put on the line and the lives of some appear more important than the lives of the others.
Healy does a good job in keeping this book moving forward. A lot happens and the action was very detailed, gritty and at times even gory. All the characters we’ve come to love from the first book are back with Tegan and Abdi joined by Bethani, Joph, Sergent Washington and Dr Carmen on their dangerous journey to bring government conspiracies to light with as many casualties as possible.
Karen Healy ends this chapter of the series well, and based on what we’ve seen so far, though I have no idea where the story will go next, I just know it will be as explosive as the first two books. Action packed with startling revelations and just the perfect touch of romance, When We Wake is a great read!
Resist is both the sequel and the conclusion to Sarah Crossan’s thrilling and at times shocking, Breathe duology and is an electrifying end to this dystopian read that will leave you breathless!
I must admit it’s taken me a little while to actually read this series, and now having finished it, I can’t for the life of my figure out why it took me so long! Breathe has been a thoroughly enjoyable series to read. With only two installments in the series, it’s gone fast, but both books have been well written, well thought out and deeply intriguing. I can’t think of a moment where the characters, the story and the pace haven’t been to my liking and not enough to keep me entertained.
Resist picks up exactly where Breathe left off, with The Grove destroyed by Ministry forces and Quinn and Bea on the run for their lives in the pod. The Resistance has been almost eradicated and those who’ve survived have been displaced, with nowhere to go. Resist sees Alina, Silas, Maude, Bruce and other Resistance members heading off in search of sanctuary from another group of rebels, discovering along the way that not everyone supports their way of thinking and may have even more dangerous plans in motion for those who live in the pod.
In the meantime, Bea and Quinn are attempting to find them and instead find others from the pod who surprisingly share their feelings on the assisting the remaining Resistance members. New friends and surprising allies arise, with the mayor's son Ronan taking on a leading role in Resist, and Quinn’s dad making different decisions from the previous book.
Now told through the POV’s of Alina, Bea, Quinn AND Ronan, Resist is very fast paced. This whole book is about our characters fight for survival and a better life, and sees the characters struggle to survive not only from the elements (i.e lack of oxygen) but those who want to shut down everything they’ve worked for (the Ministry). There were tonnes of twists and turns to keep me entertained and some startling shocks including the unexpected loss of one of our main characters at the very end of the book that blew me away. I don’t want to give away spoilers, but it’s a massive loss.
The inclusion of Ronan was interesting to the character dynamic and was a great addition to the story. I worried about a potential love triangle between him, Bea and Quinn, but Crossan handles this all well. Bea, Quinn and Alina are all the fantastic characters they were from the first book, even if the stakes are dire and see them do things they wouldn’t otherwise do. Minor characters, such as Maude Blue add that special something to the book to give it life, and just manage to make me smile time and time again.
Huge stakes and surprising developments keep Resist moving forward. The ending is explosive and hopeful, if not bittersweet, and leaves me feeling mostly satisfied, even if I wasn’t ready for the series to end. Featuring a fast paced storyline and likable characters, Breathe is a series you’ll not want to miss! (less)
In Kelly’s Corner is a slick and suspenseful read by Roxie Rivera that is expertly paced and features an intriguing bunch of layered characters within a intriguing and mysterious storyline.
This is actually my first book by Roxie Rivera, and heading into it, I really had no idea it was a spin-off series of Rivera’s Her Russian Protector. As someone who hasn’t read her Her Russian Protector series (yet) I admit I was a bit confused by the vast array of characters we briefly meet, or whom are mentioned that I’ve since learned are the heroes of the Her Russian books. This was overwhelming at first, but I honestly believe In Kelly’s Corner could be read as a stand alone and can easily stand on its own merits as a story.
Introducing us to tech wiz and entrepreneur Beatrice "Bee" Langston and her late brother’s best friend and the man she has secretly loved for years, ex-Marine turned security guard Kelly Connolly, In Kelly’s Corner offers up plenty of chemistry and intrigue as Bee sees herself relying on Kelly as a stalker wrecks dangerous havoc on her life.
Roxie Rivera paints a very entertaining book with In Kelly’s Corner. I very much enjoyed the who-done-it element that encompasses the novel and liked being able to put the clues together. I admit I did figure out who Bee’s stalker is before they were revealed, but in the beginning they weren’t that evident so I liked Rivera’s ability to keep me on my toes.
I liked both Bee and Kelly as individuals and as a couple. Bee was very independent and self sufficient and I loved the idea of a tech savvy young woman with a company and a business. Kelly was quite likable as the ex-Marine struggling with his feelings for his best friends little sister and a man with a difficult past.
I really liked how Roxie Rivera explored Bee and Kelly’s relationship. Rivera managed to give them a solid foundation and did a great job building upon this as she slowly took them to next level. The sex scenes between them were sexy and sensual and I liked that I had the opportunity to get to know the two of them before the physical aspect of their relationship became such a focal point.
There are plenty of sub-plots brewing in this series that weave together within In Kelly’s Corner. Rivera introduces us to a number of minor characters whom I already look forward to learning more of including Kelly’s brothers Jack and Finn, both of whom will have their own stories.
Sexual tension and attraction weave together with underground fighting and high-side security, in this sexy read that features just the perfect hint of the Russian mob, the Albanian mob and a whole lot of naughty fun! Absolutely worth a read!
Hopeless by Colleen Hoover is a heart wrenching and riveting New Adult novel whose tantalizing romance, unexpected depth and soul shattering storyline will leave you entranced and captivated, even after you've turned the final page!
I have to say......this has to be one of the best NA novels I've ever read, plain and simple! And considering it's taken me so very long to actually dive into this book, that is really saying something. Colleen Hoover has penned something very special with Hopeless, and with it's intense romance and unexpected content, has me wondering why in the world I waited so long to finally read it. This book is a NA must read for fans of the genre, and considering Colleen Hoover's name in the industry, Hopeless is Hoover at her best!
Colleen Hoover's writing is perfect and fitting within Hopeless; flowing nicely with a perfect pace, and is descriptive where need be and vivid when suitable. Hoover weaves a lot of powerful emotion into the pages of Hopeless, and this is something that endlessly compliment's the storyline; enhancing the experience and making it impossible not to be completely blown away by the strength displayed by our main character Sky as she confronts some very painful revelations, and memories from her past.
Linden Sky Davis, known by those who know her as Sky, is a very normal, well adjusted teenager.....or is she? When we first begin Hopeless, Sky comes across as a typical teenage girl, abet one that struggles to feel connected where guys are concerned, but this isn't really cause for concern. It's not until the introduction of Dean Holder to her life does Sky realize just what kind of connection she has been missing and what that means for her.
Can I just say how much I LOVED Sky. I mean, how can you not? Sky is strong and sweet and kind and very likable. She seems like a normal teenager; someone who loves her best friend Six and her mother Karen and despite the cruel attitude of some peers, is strong enough to hold her head up against their vicious attacks on her character. Hopeless really broke my heart. Sky is such a great girl and when we come to learn about the atrocious things done to her at the hands of the one person who should have protected her, it's hard not to be affected. And yet, I just adore Sky all the more for not allowing it to break her. It may have been a difficult situation and a battle, but Sky is a survivor and that's a very powerful thing.
And a lot of Sky's strength wouldn't be possible without the help and love of Dean Holder. Holder is intense and mysterious and all kinds of sexy. He's brooding and has a real way with words. He really does walk into Sky's life and turn it upside down; causing a chain reaction that leads to a difficult, and heartbreaking journey...on both sides. I really loved Holder. I liked that he appeared to be a bad boy, but actually isn't anything like the rumors that surround him. His faith and devotion to Sky is nothing short of beautiful.
Sky and Holder have a really intense and riveting romance. Hoover couldn't have written their relationship better in my mind. There's an intense attraction between them from the very beginning, and the connection that develops, and that we learn previously existed, made for a very sweet, deep and electric romance. I thought the foundation Hoover gave them, though I don't want to give away spoilers, allowed their relationship to be so much stronger. Together these two were electric; the dialogue shared and the physical aspect of their relationship was sizzling, but I thought the fact they were friends first and foremost made it just them just that more perfect as a couple!
Colleen Hoover addresses some really strong issues in this book; exploring sexual abuse at the hands of a parent and the effect it can have on a person in such a painful and beautiful way. Featuring two great characters, a sensual romance and a powerful storyline, Hopeless has helped Hoover secure a fan in me and guarantees I'll be seeking out more of her stories! (less)
The Last Shot is the second book in Michael Adams Last Trilogy and details the next phase in heroine Danby’s journey as she continues to battle to survive in the harsh new world formed after The Snap where no one is what they seems and enemies masquerade as friends.
This series is really entertaining to read. Michael Adam’s writing is solid and he depicts a powerful dystopian world in turmoil. It’s wonderful to find authentic Australian fiction set in our own backyard and featuring genuinely believable and real characters. Fans of John Marsden will appreciate what Adams has done with this story and the authenticity he has put into his story, set in Sydney’s west.
Personally I’m impressed with how this story is evolving and Adam’s ability to keep me on my toes. Our heroine Danby, for all her good intensions is struggling; struggling to maintain her integrity and some semblance of herself in this harsh and raw world she now finds herself in as she fights for her survival, and of those she loves.
I really liked Michael Adam’s ability to keep me questioning things in this book. As Danby goes through the motions of surviving, she also has to question who she can trust and who the enemy really is. After the shocking ending of the first book, The Last Shot starts up with Danby strongly under the impression that Jack is a murderer and the enemy, but throughout the novel there are a number of different events that has her questioning her own paranoia. It was odd seeing things fall into place and appearing to be different than you initially thought; you really began to question things as Danby does.
New and different characters are introduced in this book, as well as ones returning from The Last Girl, both that help and hinder Danby. Friends and allies turn on our heroine as she finds herself on a desperate race to escape her enemy alongside a select group of trusted friends.
Plenty of twists and turns entertain, with it obvious that Michael Adams still has a lot in store for the next book. A shocking, and unexpected ending will leave readers eagerly awaiting the third and final book, The Last Place! (less)
Resistance is the second book in Jena Leigh’s thrilling Variant series and is as equally as addictive as the first book in the series, continuing to excite with its appealing characters, action based story and riveting romance.
I have to say, I really, really like this series. It’s just plain fun to read with its fantastic character dynamic and chemistry. Honestly, this is just good reading. I will admit there didn’t seem to be the same set, and driven, storyline that we had in the first book, what with Alex learning who she was and all in Revival, but Resistance was still highly entertaining and a great read.
Told through the various POV’s of our main characters, Resistance gives us a well rounded look into their hearts and minds. I’m already head over heels for the great array of characters that feature in this series but Leigh keeps things interesting by introducing new individuals and new developments that are obviously meant to shape the evolving storyline—something that does not go astray as questions are answered at the same time more are raised.
Our main heroine and leading lady Alex continues to be great to follow, and she continues to grow. Alex has a lot to face in this book; both about herself and her purpose to the Variant society. I really like Alex and enjoy seeing her better herself. She continues to be easy to follow and relatable.
The other characters also continue to shine, with Declan in a bodyguard role of sorts and his sister Kenzie enrolling in Alex’s high school to help protect her after the events of the previous book. Cassie is there as Alex’s best friend and this time she enjoys an ever growing relationship with Aiden. Nate and Brian continue to harbor secrets that I for one am getting quite anxious over and new characters add new difficulties. Personally I love all these guys and they way they compliment each other. They’re a family through and through and Leigh does a great job showcasing this.
Jena Leigh continues to build on Alex’s relationship with Declan, something I just adore, however an unexpected enemy manipulates one of the two, managing to shatter the trust the two of them share. I was gutted to see these two begin to soar as a couple, only to be struck down once more. If the possibility of a love triangle between Alex, Declan and Nate wasn’t enough, we now have to contend with others manipulating them. Alex and Declan have such a great chemistry and the sexual tension is off the charts; I really just want to see them act upon, and cement, a relationship--although after the ending of Resistance, I have a feeling Jena Leigh has other things in mind.
The ending of this book is quite the cliffhanger! Jena leaves us all gaping and wondering what the implications of the final few pages could possibly mean. With some story developments obvious set-ups for the bigger picture, I personally can’t wait for the next instalment in this series. Resistance will leave fans desperate for more and ready to devour the next book stat! (less)
Marie Antoinette, Serial Killer by Katie Alender was a lush and at times unsuspecting ghost tale set in the beguiling city of love and is awash in history and French culture.
Receiving a copy of Marie Antoinette, Serial Killer was a bit of a surprise for me. I’d never heard of it before, but once I read the premise I was really excited to read it; I mean the ghost of Marie Antoinette killing people in Paris? Yes, please!
Marie Antoinette, Serial Killer follows Colette Islan, an American teenager on the journey of a lifetime to Paris, France who finds her sightseeing plans thwarted when some of the wealthy elite, and who’s who of Paris start being murdered in what can only be described as a grisly manner; bye-bye heads. Unexpectedly Colette finds she might have a connection to the murders and soon discovers more about her family’s history than she could have ever imagined, including their connection to the famous Marie Antoinette, dead queen of France.
Katie Alender does a really fantastic job with the setting and overall atmosphere of Marie Antoinette, Serial Killer. From the moment our main character Colette steps off the plane in Paris you can practically smell the croissants and baguettes. The atmosphere is brilliant and this is something that transpires throughout the entire novel with Alender maintaining the authenticity of the book from beginning to end. Katie Alender’s attention to detail enhances the reading experience and as Colette races to learn just what is happening, Alender’s descriptions and inclusion of some famous French monuments….Versailles, the Champs Elysees, the Louvre and of course the Eiffel Tower only make it more addictive; I felt like I was living vicariously through Colette.
For the most part I liked Colette, but she did irritate me at times. I felt she was shallow, and though I understand the purpose of this within the story, witnessing how much importance Colette put on money, social status and popularity was a bit much at times. I couldn’t believe how Colette let those around her, most notably her "friend" Hannah, treat her; Hannah was manipulative, selfish and cruel and Colette was so desperate to be her friend that she allowed material things to be more important that friendship and kindness. Colette was so driven to be popular that she was willing to be whatever Hannah wanted her to be, even if she didn’t feel the same way.
Luckily over the course of the book, with the help of the enigmatic Jules and confidant Aubrey, Colette does grow, learning what it really important and learning to stand up for herself against the likes of Hannah. Alender blends together sweet romance with chilling danger as the ghost of Marie Antoinette runs rampant in Paris.
Featuring a unique and fresh premise, Marie Antoinette, Serial Killer is a good all-round read, that will make you feel like you're literally in Paris as main heroine Colette races to stop the ghost of Marie Antoinette from taking any more lives. (less)
Steel Lily is Megan Curd’s foray into the steampunk genre and is a masterfully told and perfectly woven tale of danger, excitement and dashing adventure. With its exhilarating storyline and tangible characters, Steel Lily will easily entertain from beginning to end!
Alright, I have to be honest; I wasn’t really sure what to expect when I began this book. Although the cover is pretty it's also very unassuming and doesn't speak a lot to the book it houses. I’ve read very few steampunk novels and although I quite enjoyed the ones I have read I still wasn’t sure what Steel Lily would be like. And in saying that, let me just say how truely much I loved this book! Steel Lily turned out to be an unexpected gem for me!
Even though she is an already self-published author, this was my first novel by Megan Curd, but I was highly impressed. I don’t know what her previous work is like, but I very much liked what she has done with the first book in her new The Periodic Series. The world was rich and lush and full of vivid characters and excitement. Plenty of twists kept me on my toes and the way Curd weaves together her storyline was excellent. Plus, the character dynamic that develops between our main character and the individuals she meets made for some witty and smart dialogue.
Introducing us to a society forever altered by World War 3 and radiation exposure, Steel Lily follows the adventures of Avery Pike, a fifteen year old girl and Elemental who lives in Dome Four. In a world where certain individuals have the ability to control different elements and the atmosphere outside is supposedly uninhabitable, the people of Dome Four reply on Avery, and those like her, to supply it with the steam it needs to keep operating sufficiently. With the appearance of a surprising and at time dubious stranger, Avery finds herself leaving Dome Four; quickly embarking on a crazy journey that sees her discover truths about the world around her she never expected.
A strapping and stubborn young lass, Avery has lived her entire life in Dome Four and after being left orphaned after the disappearance of her parents only had her best friend Alice and their friend Leg’s as family. I truly, truly liked Avery. This girl has fire, and I don’t just mean her fiery locks. Avery Pike is smart and spirited and extremely easy to follow. Impossible not to like, Avery’s voice is quick and fast thinking and also very vulnerable. She’s just a generally good character to follow and I certainly liked seeing her take chances and do what she had to do.
Throughout Steel Lily, Avery is joined by her shy, but also strong-willed best friend Alice on her adventure as well as their friend Legs, but soon meets a vast array of characters, including the tech quiz Sari, the clever, whimsical and cheeky Jaxon "Jax" Pierce and dark and mysterious Mr. Riggs, who are all more than they appear.
I liked all the characters in this book. Alice, and then Sari, were true friends to Avery, and Riggs certainly proved to be unexpected at times, but the individual who stole the show for me was Jax. Megan Curd gave him such character, and real personality. Jax was brash and forward and extremely cheeky and I adored the one liners and tongue in cheek comments he seemed to have by the truckload. Curd made him someone you constantly wanted to read about because of the life he brought to the story.
The chemistry that develops between Avery and Jax is sizzling from the beginning and is a slow simmer that slowly burns as the story progresses. These two go toe to toe at times and the tension only gets better as the attraction and connection develops. It seems obvious that there is going to be something between these two from the moment Jax is introduced to the story, but that doesn’t make it any less satisfying to watch unfold.
Perfect for fans of The Girl in The Steel Corset by Kady Cross, Steel Lily features a great cast of characters and an intriguing storyline that sees friends become foes and allies turn into enemies in this riveting steampunk novel that will easily leave you wanting more!
The Fault In Our Stars by John Green is an unparrelled story. Humorous, romantic and achingly beautiful, The Fault In Our Stars will make you laugh, smile and cry. A story about life and loss and the powerful love shared between two teenagers in heartbreaking circumstances will touch you in ways you've never known!
In a world where there are so many stories, there are some books that leave a mark on you. Masterfully written tales that reach down inside you and find places sometimes you didn't even know were there. Tales that rip you apart and mess with your emotions in the most beautiful of ways....managing to fill you will laughter at one moment and sadness the next. Stories that are so deep in their content that they change you.
I've read a lot of books in my time as a reader--some excessivly emotional, others not so much--but never have I had a book break my heart like The Fault In Our Stars did. In all honesty, there are no words to describe the beautiful tragedy that is this book. That can even come close to describe it's triumphs and it's pain and it's addictive prescence. This book managed to tear me apart at times. Honestly, I was crying so hard I had to stop reading, simply because I could no longer distingish the words on the page.
There is no doubt within my mind that John Green is a genuis. What he has done with this story is nothing short of a miracle. The Fault In Our Stars is smart, quirky and endlessly emotional. John Green explores love and loss through the eyes of his main character Hazel in the most incredible of ways, forcing his reader through a whirlwind of emotion that you would almost come to resent....if you didn't love it so!
The raw insensity to this story is something you cannot help but love. The profound emotion and depth Green forces you to experince is something you're unable to avoid. Written though the eyes of Hazel Grace Lancaster, a sixteen year old girl with terminal cancer, The Fault In Our Stars depicts one of the most powerful love stories you could ever hope to read!
This is one of the few times where I don't plan to say a lot about the main characters. I mean, really? What can I say? No words will eloquently describe the brilliance that is Augustus Waters, with his emotional depth and metorphirical nature. Hazel Grace is a character you simply need to read to understand and the stregenth she displays in the face of such pain and loss is nothing short of beautiful. John Green gives life to these two through The Fault In Our Stars and makes them so completely human that you'll laugh with them, cry with them and just adore them.
The entire time I was reading The Fault In Our Stars, I knew it was going to break my heart, but the beauty in which it did was something I didn't want to miss. This story is tragic, but so, so achingly beautiful. The characters are raw and real; deep and powerful. I feel emotionally drained having read this book, but I'd do it all again and most likely will. It took me a while to read this, but I'm so thankful I did--Hazel and Augustus's story is sure to stay with me.
John Green's powerful exploration of life and love in the midst of death is something so powerful in The Fault In Our Stars . There's no doubt in my mind that the smart and bittersweet romance explored in The Fault In Our Stars will stay with you, long after the inevitable happens. Get ready for an emotional rollarcoaster ride with The Fault In Our Stars---one that's sure to have you coming back for more! (less)
**spoiler alert** Firstly thanks to Giselle of Xpresso Book Tours and author Tracey E. Banghart for allowing me to read this in exchange for an honest...more**spoiler alert** Firstly thanks to Giselle of Xpresso Book Tours and author Tracey E. Banghart for allowing me to read this in exchange for an honest review!
Shattered Veil was an unexpectedly exciting dystopian read with just the perfect amount of sci-fi and steampunk mixed in to give it an edge. Tracy. E. Banghart introduces us to a beguiling new world and a capable and likable heroine in the first book in her new series, The Diatous Wars.
I highly enjoyed Shattered Veil! Seriously, enjoyed it! Not that I wasn’t expecting to, but I admit I did worry the military aspect that features so heavily might be too strong for my liking. Instead, I found that this enhanced so many of the other aspects of the story—making it so difficult to stop reading when the stakes were so dire.
Shattered Veil follows eighteen year old Aris Haan, a quiet, but talented village girl from the land of Atalanta whose childhood love has been enscripted as a healer in Atalanta’s war against neighboring dominion Safara. When the boy who has her heart leaves to tend to soldiers injured during the war, tearing them apart, Aris makes a shocking decision to follow him into the military and in disguise enlists as one of the best flyers Atalanta has ever seen!
I was very impressed with Shattered Veil. Tracy E. Banghart has created a really unique and riveting world within its pages. Beautifully written, Shattered Veil is extremely detailed and Banghart paints a very appealing setting for her story—it’s a dystopian society at war; where no one is who they seem and peoples intentions aren’t always what you think. Weaving together the tale of a simple village girl, with that of the in power politicians of Atalanta and its ally Ruslana, I found it highly entertaining trying to figure out how the two different storyline’s interconnected.
I adored the characters in this book. Told through the eyes of our main heroine Aris, as well as politicians and Ward’s of their respective dominions Pyralis Nekkos-- Atalanta’s leader, and Galena Vadim, Ruslana’s leader, Shattered Veil features a number of different characters, all with their own personalities, and purposes within the story. Each has their own story and drive within the tale and I enjoyed having each revealed as the story progressed.
The growth Aris undertakes throughout the story is nothing short of remarkable. Aris starts out immensely naïve, and very accepting of her lot in life. As someone who suffered an illness as a child that left her partly crippled, Aris is seen as incapable by a lot of people and those who love her treat her very breakable. The only thing she seems to care about is her boyfriend Calix, and although they love each other it seems almost sad that Aris has no higher goals for herself. When Aris is recruited as a flyer and enlists in the hope she will see Calix, she forced to endure weeks of hard physical training if she hopes to remain in the military. This forces Aris to better herself. It’s a hard time for her, and the training grueling on her body, that is unused to such activity, but Aris perseveres and pushes on, securing her place in her unit.
Once securely in her unit and out on missions, Aris continues to hide her true self, acting as Aristos. Aris meets many people during her time in the military. Making friends with her formidable bunkmate, a strong individual—also a woman in disguise, named Dyrsis who has her own missions and the other soldiers in the unit, including the mysterious and alluring Lieutenant Vidar, Aris comes to see the true nature of war; the pain and tragedy that come with it changing the way she sees the world. I loved Aris. Everything she goes through helps her become the strong, and highly capable young woman with her own wants and desires outside her love for Calix she is at the end of the novel---and I’m so thrilled to have seen all that!
With Aris’s enlistment in the military stemming from her desire to be with Calix, I actually enjoyed seeing how Tracy E. Banghart altered their relationship in Shattered Veil. While they are sweet in the beginning, I never overly felt attached to their romance and I’m actually thrilled over the possibilities Banghart has set up in this first book for Aris. Now I’m not going to give away too many spoilers, but I feel that Aris could find something really deep with someone who already seems to see and know her better than Calix ever did. I’m very excited to see where this goes in the next book!
Featuring exciting action and the perfect blend of dystopian, steampunk and just the hint of sci-fi, Shattered Veil is a thrilling start to this new series. Tracy E. Banghart weaves together action and danger with friendship, romance and excitement to ensure I’ll be counting down the days until the next book! Highly recommend! (less)
Brigid Kemmerer continues her riveting Elementals series with Secret, the emotionally driven and shockingly exciting fourth instalment that explores Merrick brother Nick like never before and finally allows readers into some unexpected secrets!
In all honesty, the last book in this series wasn't my favourite. Don't get me wrong, Spirit was a wonderful read, but it seemed to be missing that extra something the first two books had in my opinion. In saying that, I was nervous heading into Secret. Though I've mostly liked her, Quinn has had her moments where I've struggled to connect with her and as the quiet, calm and disconcerning brother, Nick has sometimes faded into the background. I was worried Secret wouldn't live up to the first two books....but boy was I wrong! I think Secret is quite possibly my favourite book yet!
Prior to reading Secret, I had the chance to read Breathless, an Elemental novella which features both Nick and Quinn but is set before the events of Secret thanks to the Australian edition of Secret that included it as a bonus feature. At around 50 pages long, Breathless allows readers to learn Nick's secret for this first time, something I appreciated, as in all honesty I hadn't quite put two and two together during the previous books. Breathless sets the story up nicely, with the transition into Secret an easy one, thanks to what we have learned during it.
I have to say, I adore how Brigid Kemmerer has written this book. I mean, I've loved all her books; they're all expertly told, with perfect writing and attention to detail, but Secret seems so much more emotional and confronting at times than some of the previous books. Brigid Kemmerer has created a fantastic supernatural series with this series, but I think her ability to explore deeper issues, real, moving issues at times is what makes this series so much more special.
Nick Merrick is an air elemental. He's popular, attractive and he's always there for his family when they need it. He's smart, kind and reliable. He's got a loving family, a great girlfriend and it genuinely seems like he has it all. Only Nick is hiding a secret; one that he fears will tear his life apart. Nick Merrick is gay.
I've mentioned it before, but I'll say it again. I was really surprised to find out Nick was actually gay in this book. In terms of characterisation, even though he is a nice guy, Nick has always just faded into the background for me. And with so many personable characters in this series, it would have been so easy for Kemmerer to leave him there, lost amongst the more dominant personalities. Instead, Brigid Kemmerer gave Nick substance. She gave him character. She made him real. And I can't give her enough props for that!
As Secret unfolds and Brigid Kemmerer details Nick's uncertainty and his insecurity, I have to admit..... I fell so deeply in love with Nick Merrick I almost have no words. Watching him struggle with himself over what he wanted and what he felt was just heartbreaking, and so very emotional. Nick's anguish over what he is and his fear of coming out to his brothers just bleeds through the pages and Kemmerer does a fantastic job utilising that within the story. I was hastily turning pages and reading because I needed to know that Nick's story would turn out alright. I needed him to find peace with himself and those around him. I needed it.
Throughout the story, one of the big focus's is Nick's relationship with Adam, the first boys he's ever been so attracted to that it forced him to confront what he felt. I was so pleased with Adam and Nick's relationship. Brigid Kemmerer writes it so well; with Nick uncertain, unsure and giddy and excited. It was the start of first love, and boy and girl, or boy and boy....it couldn't have been written better. It was simple and complicated and endearingly sweet. Nick and Adam just fit. And I loved that!
Told in dual POV, both through Nick and Quinn's eyes, Secret spends as much time following Quinn as it does Nick. Quinn Brisco is Nick's girlfriend turned "girlfriend" and happens to surprise me a lot in this book. I have always liked Quinn, although there have been a few moments in the last couple of books where I've questioned some of her actions and decisions. Having read Secret I think I finally understand. Brigid Kemmerer continues to do what she is good at with Quinn; writing unexpectedly layered characters with flaws, issues and real problems. Exploring Quinn's home life we discover the abusive environment she lives in and suddenly her actions take on a new meaning.
Quinn struggles to let people in. She keeps secrets about her life and what's really happening and it's actually quite sad. Especially with the realisation that it's quite life like. That being said, in the story, Quinn finds an unexpected saviour in the form or Tyler Morgan. Yep. Remember him? The arrogant and cruel Elemental who has tormented the Merrick brothers for years? Well, in Secret, Tyler becomes Quinn's white knight in many ways and unexpectedly turns out to have a heart. Though there are many fences to mend between he and the Merrick brothers, Brigid Kemmerer adds another layer and dynamic to the story introducing Tyler as someone who has made bad choices and mistakes, but who actually has a kinder side. One he reveals to Quinn.
Mixed in amongst the emotional developments experienced by both Nick and Quinn in Secret is the ongoing storyline of the Guides that continue to hunt the Merrick brothers and Hunter. As secrets come to light, alliances change and truths are faced, all in the lead up to the third and final book, Sacrifice.
Brigid Kemmerer has introduced her readers to a family plagued by tragedy, but bound by their love and devotion to one another; hooking us all with each subsequent story and reeling us in each time. As the series draws to a close, I have no doubt the final book is sure to be an explosive conclusion! (less)
From popular bestselling author Jamie McGuire comes Red Hill, a post apocalyptic thriller that will excite fans of The Walking Dead. Red Hill is a beautifully told story that mixes together excitement and danger against the pitfalls of love and surviving in the midst of tremendous odds!
Told through the eyes of Scarlet, a divorced mother of two, Nathan a man in a loveless marriage and Miranda, a college girl on her way home for the summer with her sister and their boyfriends, Red Hill depicts the events that follow when a deadly virus finds its way into the population; infecting those bitten and turning them into mindless zombies. In the tradition of The Walking Dead, Red Hill is a very realistic and chilling novel. A far cry from other zombie novels where futuristic elements play a part, Red Hill explores what would happen if a zombie apocalypse happened in today’s society.
Personally I don’t think this book is going to appeal to everyone. Though McGuire’s pertinent to detail is spot on and her writing solid, Red Hill lacks some of the excitement and over dramatization that I would hope to see in this kind of novel. Red Hill is in no way a romantic zombie story. McGuire doesn’t romanticize her zombies; this isn’t a story about a bunch of capable and kick-butt people taking on the zombies. This is a story about a group of very real, very authentic, very frightened people who are just trying to survive when the world as they know it ends.
I found it really interesting seeing Jamie McGuire weave together the lives of her characters without them even knowing it. Until the moment they all meet at Red Hill, Scarlet, Nathan and Miranda are put in the vicinity of each other numerous times, even interacting with the same individuals, be it at different points in time and don’t even know it.
Throughout Red Hill, McGuire explores the complexity of human emotion and an individual’s capacity to love in the face of tremendous odds, where survival is far from a sure thing. It’s impossible not to question certain idealisms and notions when reading this book. I mean, what is stronger than a mother’s love for her children, or a father’s love for his child? The power of love between two people sure they want to spend the rest of their lives together? How can we judge people as conceited and selfish when the selfishness seen is as simple as the lengths at which a mother is willing to go to to protect her child? How can you judge someone for putting the life of the one they love over a complete stranger?
It may seem cruel, but in a world gone wrong, what happens to a person’s capacity to care when everyone is out for themselves and do cruel things? It’s a chilling thought, and through out Red Hill, amidst the danger and entertaining story it’s hard not to think of this. At least, I know I did.
Filled to the brim with high stakes, violence and danger, Red Hill mixes friendship and love with bittersweet happiness and sadness. Though it might not be for everyone, Red Hill is a nicely written, and in my opinion, a great read! (less)