Monday, March 30, 2020

Review: Night of the Dragon by Julie Kagawa

Title: Night of the Dragon
Author: Julie Kagawa
Series: Book Three in the Shadow of the Fox Trilogy
Genre: YA Fantasy
Published By: Inkyard (March 31, 2020)
Source: ARC Provided by the Publisher (in exchange for an honest review)
My Rating: 5 Stars!!

Book Description:
Master storyteller Julie Kagawa concludes the enthralling journey into the heart of the fantastical Empire of Iwagoto in the third book of the Shadow of the Fox trilogy. As darkness rises and chaos reigns, a fierce kitsune and her shadowy protector will face down the greatest evil of all. A captivating fantasy for fans of Sabaa Tahir, Sarah J. Maas and Marie Lu.

Kitsune shapeshifter Yumeko has given up the final piece of the Scroll of a Thousand Prayers in order to save everyone she loves from imminent death. Now she and her ragtag band of companions must journey to the wild sea cliffs of Iwagoto in a desperate last-chance effort to stop the Master of Demons from calling upon the Great Kami dragon and making the wish that will plunge the empire into destruction and darkness.

Shadow clan assassin Kage Tatsumi has regained control of his body and agreed to a true deal with the devil—the demon inside him, Hakaimono. They will share his body and work with Yumeko and their companions to stop a madman and separate Hakaimono from Tatsumi and the cursed sword that had trapped the demon for nearly a millennium.

But even with their combined skills and powers, this most unlikely team of heroes knows the forces of evil may be impossible to overcome. And there is another player in the battle for the scroll, a player who has been watching, waiting for the right moment to pull strings that no one even realized existed…until now.

You know those series that are so well written, so captivating that you've been invested in from the very first chapter? Those stories that you think about long after you've put the book down and those stories that, you can't wait to get the next book of because you need to know what happens next? You need to know that all is well. That some how, it will all work out. That your beloved characters will have a happily ever after. Those stories in short, that speak to your soul and change you. Make you wonder about things you've never thought about before and see things and legends and lore different. Books that put you in a book hang over when you are done because how could anything else possible live up to this masterpiece you've just read?

The Shadow of the Fox trilogy, has been that trilogy for me and I'll be honest, that passion, that urge to read quickly and devour, yet stop and savor at the same time hasn't happened for me in a YA series, heck in a YA trilogy, in a really long time. 

And I did both devour and savor this. It was everything I was hoping it would be. So many emotions, thoughts, and feelings coursed through me throughout this whole last story. I cried, I laughed, I smiled, I got angry, and I cried again. I couldn't of asked for a better ending, a better story, or a better tale. 

Beautifully written, detailed, and told, this was everything I was looking for and everything I didn't even know I needed and wanted. 

*All thoughts and opinions are my own and were not influenced by the author or publisher. I was not compensated for this review.*

Monday, March 23, 2020

Review: The Honey Don't List by Christina Lauren

Title: The Honey-Don't List
Author: Christina Lauren
Series: Stand Alone
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published By: Gallery Books (March 24, 2020)
Source: ARC Provided by the Publisher (in exchange for an honest review)
My Rating: 4 Stars!

Book Description:
Carey Douglas has worked for home remodeling and design gurus Melissa and Rusty Tripp for nearly a decade. A country girl at heart, Carey started in their first store at sixteen, and—more than anyone would suspect—has helped them build an empire. With a new show and a book about to launch, the Tripps are on the verge of superstardom. There’s only one problem: America’s favorite couple can’t stand each other.

James McCann, MIT graduate and engineering genius, was originally hired as a structural engineer, but the job isn’t all he thought it’d be. The last straw? Both he and Carey must go on book tour with the Tripps and keep the wheels from falling off the proverbial bus.

Unfortunately, neither of them is in any position to quit. Carey needs health insurance, and James has been promised the role of a lifetime if he can just keep the couple on track for a few more weeks. While road-tripping with the Tripps up the West Coast, Carey and James vow to work together to keep their bosses’ secrets hidden, and their own jobs secure. But if they stop playing along—and start playing for keeps—they may have the chance to build something beautiful together…

From the “hilariously zany and heartfelt” (Booklist) Christina Lauren comes a romantic comedy that proves if it’s broke, you might as well fix it.

I can always count on Laurens delivering a well written, fleshed out story that will make you feel as if you know and love the characters from the very start. 

With new ideas and a refreshing story line, there is very little this writing duo hasn't tried and conquered. 

With reality TV on the rise, it wasn't any wonder that they would choose to tackle that theme next. I absolutely loved the references and the realness that they brought into this story with what one can only imagine, is really how a lot of them are behind the scenes. It made it feel real and some how, crazy and it seemed, relatable.  

A good reminder how most of the time, the things we see on the surface are never quite what they really are underneath. 

A fun story about two people still trying to find their way, find love, and hopefully survive it all. 

*All thoughts and opinions are my own and were not influenced by that author or publisher. I was not compensated for this review.*

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Release Day Review: Smoke Bitten by Patricia Briggs

Title: Smoke Bitten
Author: Patricia Briggs
Series: Book Twelve in the Mercy Thompson Series
Genre: Fantasy
Published By: Berkley/Ace (March 16, 2020)
Source: ARC Provided by the Publisher (in exchange for an honest review)
My Rating: 5 Stars!!

Book Description:
Mercy Thompson, car mechanic and shapeshifter, faces a threat unlike any other in this thrilling entry in the #1 New York Times bestselling series.

I am Mercedes Athena Thompson Hauptman.
My only “superpowers” are that I turn into a thirty-five pound coyote and fix Volkswagens. But I have friends in odd places and a pack of werewolves at my back. It looks like I’m going to need them.

Centuries ago, the fae dwelt in Underhill–until she locked her doors against them. They left behind their great castles and troves of magical artifacts. They abandoned their prisoners and their pets. Without the fae to mind them, those creatures who remained behind roamed freely through Underhill wreaking havoc. Only the deadliest survived.

Now one of those prisoners has escaped. It can look like anyone, any creature it chooses. But if it bites you, it controls you. It lives for chaos and destruction. It can make you do anything–even kill the person you love the most. Now it is here, in the Tri-Cities. In my territory.

It won’t, can’t, remain.

You know when a story is good when it is impossible to put it down. When you devour it in a day and are left satisfied, but always wanting more.

This series is so outstanding, so well written and just darn real feeling. The characters, the story line, the emotions that pull on every heart string imaginable. It is fantasy yes but so well done that you feel completely immersed in the story and when you are done, having to slowly blink your way back into reality, even then, you find it hard to believe that it didn't all really happen. That is isn't true, that vampires and werewolves and the fae aren't really out there in your own backyard just waiting for their moment to come out and shine. 

I have loved this series from the very first book and there is a reason why. Briggs is a master at story telling. Creating stories, settings, and characters that are tangible. So real you know them, you love them, you feel for them and are so emotionally invested that you hold your breath for them, smile along with them and even cry with them when things get hard. 

Mercy and Adam have always been one of my favorite couples purely because they are always a united front. They have each other's back and as much as they don't want to put the other in danger, they know that there are things one is better doing over the other and what has to be done, has to be done. Adam is an alpha but he isn't an arse about it. He isn't controlling and he certainly doesn't want Mercy to be anything but herself. 

To see them not be completely united...was hard. Gut wrenching even but I knew they would some how work it out. I trusted Briggs to make it right. These two have been to hell and back and I knew this hick-up wasn't going to stop them.

I was so right to put my trust in her. This story was amazing and brilliant and I loved it all, hard parts and all. It came together beautifully and I wasn't ready for it to be over. 

This truly is an action packed story full of all the good stuff us fantasy and paranormal lovers adore. Friendship, family, loyalty, danger, love, romance, it really does have it all and with each new installment, continues to blow me away and prove just how strong it is. How much it deserves it's place in my top ten of all time. 

*All thoughts and opinions are my own and were not influenced by the author or publisher. I was not compensated for this review.*

Monday, March 16, 2020

Blog Tour Review: Insurrection by Chris Babu

Title: Insurrection
Author: Chris Babu
Series: Book Three in the Initiation Trilogy
Genre: YA Dystopian
Published: February 18, 2020
Source: ARC provided by the publisher (in exchange for an honest review)

Book Description:

They are protected by lies. He is armed with the truth.

Having survived the Initiation and expedition, one battle remains: the fight for the heart and soul of New America.

Drayden and his friends, enlisting the help of Professor Worth, must find a way back to New America before the Guardians imperil their return. But for these teens, their problems are only beginning. The Bureau, which never expected them to survive the expedition, will do everything in their power to prevent New America’s darkest secrets from getting out.

Drayden’s only hope is the insurrection led by ally Kim Craig. The David versus Goliath battle between good and evil, between truth and lies, will push Drayden to his breaking point and require bravery, self-acceptance, and above all, belief in himself. Backed by the will of the citizens, he’ll need to engineer an ingenious strategy to defeat the all-powerful authoritarians. The question is, will it be enough? 

About the Author:

Chris Babu grew up in North Haven, CT, playing soccer and the violin in his free time. After devouring The Shining under the covers with a flashlight when he was eight, Chris was hooked on fiction. He's always had a thing for young adult books. But he's also a major science and math nerd—physics being his favorite—and he has a math degree from MIT.

For nineteen years, he worked as a bond trader on Wall Street, riding the subway to and from work every day. He traded mortgage-backed securities for Bank of America and then Deutsche Bank, where he eventually ran the MBS trading desk. Now Chris writes full-time, always with his trusted assistant Buddy, a 130-pound Great Dane, who can usually be found on his lap. They split their time between New York City and the east end of Long Island. Their omnipresence at home drives his wife Michelle and daughter Lily crazy. 

This whole series has been such a fun and dramatic ride that will sweep you away with it's sometimes intense action, horrible secrets, and always with the possibility of the whatifs. 

I had the privileged of being able to read this back to back and thoroughly enjoyed every single page of it. I quickly was wrapped up in the slight Hunger Games of it all without being a carbon copy but sticking to it's own horrifyingly realistic take on what could one day happen if so many things don't change and if certain events were to happen.

Filled with friendship, courage, bravery and those wanting better for everyone, this truly was a fun trilogy that I think fans of the genre are doing to not only devour but love. 

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Blog Tour Review: A Murderous Relations by Deanna Raybourn

I adore the Veronica Speedwell Series, it is just so much fun, with lovable characters, adventurous mysteries and so much more. It truly has won a place in my heart. I'm so excited to once again be a part of the blog tour for this amazing, well written series. I sincerely hope everyone will check it out if you haven't already. 

Title: A Murderous Relation
Author: Deanna Raybourn
Series: Book Five in the Veronica Speedwell Series
Published By: Berkley (March 10, 2020)
Genre: Historical Mystery
Source: ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review

Book Description:
Veronica Speedwell navigates a dark world of scandal and murder in this new adventure from New York Times bestselling and Edgar Award nominated author Deanna Raybourn.

Veronica Speedwell and her natural historian colleague Stoker are asked by Lady Wellingtonia Beauclerk to help with a potential scandal so explosive it threatens to rock the monarchy. Prince Albert Victor is a regular visitor to the most exclusive private club in London, known as the Club de l'Etoile, and the proprietess, Madame Aurore, has received an expensive gift that can be traced back to the prince. Lady Wellie would like Veronica and Stoker to retrieve the jewel from the club before scandal can break.

Worse yet, London is gripped by hysteria in the autumn of 1888, terrorized by what would become the most notorious and elusive serial killer in history, Jack the Ripper--and Lady Wellie suspects the prince may be responsible.

Veronica and Stoker reluctantly agree to go undercover at Madame Aurore's high class brothel, where another body soon turns up. Many secrets are swirling around Veronica and the royal family--and it's up to Veronica and Stoker to find the truth, before it's too late for all of them.

About the Author:

New York Times and USA Today bestselling novelist Deanna Raybourn is a 6th-generation native Texan. She graduated with a double major in English and history from the University of Texas at San Antonio. Married to her college sweetheart and the mother of one, Raybourn makes her home in Virginia. Her novels have been nominated for numerous awards including five RITAs, two RT Reviewers’ Choice awards, the Agatha, two Dilys Winns, a Last Laugh, and three du Mauriers. Her Lady Julia Grey novels are currently in development as a television series in the UK and she launched a new Victorian mystery series with the 2015 release of A CURIOUS BEGINNING, featuring intrepid butterfly-hunter and amateur sleuth, Veronica Speedwell. Veronica’s second adventure is A PERILOUS UNDERTAKING (January 2017), and book three, A TREACHEROUS CURSE, was published in January 2018. A DANGEROUS COLLABORATION will be released in March 2019. Further books in the Veronica Speedwell series are contracted through 2020.

It didn't take long for this series to win it's way into almost everyone who has read it's heart. 

It is so entertaining, fun, enchanting, and filled with all the things historical, mystery, and romance lovers adore. It has just about everything one could ask for in a good read. From lovable characters, to a well written mystery, to the heart pounding, heart melting relationships and hint of romance. This series is a stand out series is any genre you want to put it. 

And even better, the books just keep getting better and better as they go. There is always something more. More mystery, more danger, more mouth watering, heart accelerating sexual tension, just more. 

I adore this series. I adore Veronica and Stoker. Raybourn always manages to transport us back in time to Europe and all the adventure and mayhem that these two lovable characters can possible get into. 

Another outstanding installment in this series and yet again proves why Raybourn is a master in her art. 

*All thoughts and opinions are my own and were not influenced by the author or publisher. I was not compensated for this review.*

Monday, March 9, 2020

Mini Review: In Five Years by Rebecca Serle

Title: In Five Years
Author: Rebecca Serle
Series: Stand Alone
Genre: Contemporary
Published By: Atria (March 10, 2020)
Source: ARC Provided by the Publisher (in exchange for an honest review)
My Rating: 4 Stars!

Book Description:
Perfect for fans of Me Before You and One Day—a striking, powerful, and moving love story following an ambitious lawyer who experiences an astonishing vision that could change her life forever.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

When Type-A Manhattan lawyer Dannie Cohan is asked this question at the most important interview of her career, she has a meticulously crafted answer at the ready. Later, after nailing her interview and accepting her boyfriend’s marriage proposal, Dannie goes to sleep knowing she is right on track to achieve her five-year plan.

But when she wakes up, she’s suddenly in a different apartment, with a different ring on her finger, and beside a very different man. The television news is on in the background, and she can just make out the scrolling date. It’s the same night—December 15—but 2025, five years in the future.

After a very intense, shocking hour, Dannie wakes again, at the brink of midnight, back in 2020. She can’t shake what has happened. It certainly felt much more than merely a dream, but she isn’t the kind of person who believes in visions. That nonsense is only charming coming from free-spirited types, like her lifelong best friend, Bella. Determined to ignore the odd experience, she files it away in the back of her mind.

That is, until four-and-a-half years later, when by chance Dannie meets the very same man from her long-ago vision.

Brimming with joy and heartbreak, In Five Years is an unforgettable love story that reminds us of the power of loyalty, friendship, and the unpredictable nature of destiny.

Top Five Reasons You Should Read In Five Years:

1. A thought provoking read that will make you question all the what ifs in life.

2. Relatable characters you can't help connecting with.

3. Rich in detail and a plot line we can all relate to.

4. A setting that will make your heart pitter patter at. 

5. Beautiful writing that draws you right into the story and makes you think about it long after you've put it down. 


*All thoughts and opinions are my own and were not influenced by the author or publisher. I was not compensated for this review.*

Tuesday, March 3, 2020

Review: Restless Slumber by K.J. Sutton

Title: Restless Slumber
Author: K.J. Sutton
Series: Book Two in the Fortuna Sworn Series
Genre: Fantasy
Published: February 6, 2020
Source: ARC Provided by the Author (in exchange for an honest review)
My Rating: 4 Stars!

Book Description:
"Before I met you, I thought Nightmares were creatures of pain and darkness. Why, then, are you constantly seeking freedom and light?"

Fortuna's entire life has changed.

She has no idea how to balance her new responsibilities and who she used to be. There are hundreds of faeries in her head, her brother seems to have lost touch with reality, and a werewolf won’t leave her side. Maybe the utter lack of control is why her abilities seem to be changing, as well.

Then there’s Collith. Enigmatic, beautiful, and infuriating. Not only a king of the faeries she despises so much, but also her mate. His gentle pursuit causes confusion in her normally unwavering relationship with Oliver.

As a result of it all, Fortuna now finds herself surrounded by new enemies and ones from the past. The question isn’t whether she is strong enough to make change in such a corrupt court.

It’s whether she will survive long enough to do it.

Content warning: This novel depicts scenes of sexual violence and domestic abuse. 

This is such a unique fantasy series. With characters ever bit as interesting as the powers and secrets they possess. It is one action packed ride that I enjoyed every single page of and while I enjoyed book one of this series, I wasn't quite prepared for how much I would love book two. 

It was even more imaginative, action filled and numerous times throughout, kept me on the edge of my seat wondering what would happen next.

It was darker and richer and much more. 

 The explosive ending was so hard to take and I so was not prepared for it all. It's going to make the wait for book three, even harder than it already was going to be. 

I truly can not wait for more, I need to see where Fortuna goes next! 

*All thoughts and opinions are my own and were not influenced by the author. I was not compensated for this review.*

Monday, March 2, 2020

Review: Girls With Razor Hearts by Suzanne Young

Title: Girls With Razors Hearts
Author: Suzanne Young
Series: Book Two in the Girls With Sharp Sticks Series
Genre: Fantasy
Published By: Simon Pulse (March 17, 2020)
Source: ARC Provided by the Publisher (in exchange for an honest review)
My Rating: 4 Stars!

Book Description:
It’s time to fight back in this second novel in a thrilling, subversive near future series from New York Times bestselling author Suzanne Young about a girls-only private high school that is far more than it appears to be.

Make me a girl with a razor heart…

It’s been weeks since Mena and the other girls of Innovations Academy escaped their elite boarding school. Although traumatized by the violence and experimentations that occurred there, Mena quickly discovers that the outside world can be just as unwelcoming and cruel. With no one else to turn to, the girls only have each other—and the revenge-fueled desire to shut down the corporation that imprisoned them.

The girls enroll in Stoneridge Prep, a private school with suspect connections to Innovations, to identify the son of an investor and take down the corporation from the inside. But with pressure from Leandra, who revealed herself to be a double-agent, and Winston Weeks, an academy investor gone rogue, Mena wonders if she and her friends are simply trading one form of control for another. Not to mention the woman who is quite literally invading Mena’s thoughts—a woman with extreme ideas that both frighten and intrigue Mena.

And as the girls fight for freedom from their past—and freedom for the girls still at Innovations—they must also face new questions about their existence…and what it means to be girls with razor hearts.

Girls with Razor Hearts was everything one would expect from the talented Young. It was so realistic in it's simplicity, horrifying in the what ifs, thought provoking, unique, and so, so, addicting. 

I even dare say I loved this more than the first, which, let's be honest is rare in most series, trilogies, and duologies. 

The girls were more fierce while also still maintaining their love for each other and those they've come to trust. In fact, the girl power in this book is what really makes it stand out. Girls in this horrible dark world that Young has created, have very little power anymore yet theses extraordinary girls, are winning that power back and are refusing to back down. They are going to fight for what is right, fair, and deserving. 

I love love the women these girls are becoming. How they are progressing and changing and adapting. 

I can not wait to see what is in store for them next. This was every bit as dramatic, exciting, and enchanting as it's predecessor and I want more! 

*All thoughts and opinions are my own and were not influenced by the author or publisher. I was not compensated for this review.*