Archive | January 2018

Review: Onyx and Ivory

Title: Onyx and Ivory

Author: Mindee Arnett

Date of Publication: May 15th, 2018


Goodreads Summary:

They call her Traitor Kate. It’s a title Kate Brighton inherited from her father after he tried to assassinate the high king years ago. Now Kate lives as an outcast, clinging to the fringes of society as a member of the Relay, the imperial courier service. Only those most skilled in riding and bow hunting ride for the Relay; and only the fastest survive, for when dark falls, the nightdrakes—deadly flightless dragons—come out to hunt. Fortunately, Kate has a secret edge: she is a wilder, born with magic that allows her to influence the minds of animals. But it’s this magic that she needs to keep hidden, as being a wilder is forbidden, punishable by death or exile. And it’s this magic that leads her to a caravan massacred by nightdrakes in broad daylight—the only survivor her childhood friend, her first love, the boy she swore to forget, the boy who broke her heart.

The high king’s second son, Corwin Tormane, never asked to lead. Even as he waits for the uror—the once-in-a-generation ritual to decide which of the king’s children will succeed him—he knows it’s always been his brother who will assume the throne. And that’s fine by him. He’d rather spend his days away from the palace, away from the sight of his father, broken with sickness from the attempt on his life. But the peacekeeping tour Corwin is on has given him too much time to reflect upon the night he saved his father’s life—the night he condemned the would-be killer to death and lost the girl he loved. Which is why he takes it on himself to investigate rumors of unrest in one of the remote city-states, only for his caravan to be attacked—and for him to be saved by Kate.

With their paths once more entangled, Kate and Corwin have to put the past behind them. The threat of drakes who attack in the daylight is only the beginning of a darker menace stirring in the kingdom—one whose origins have dire implications for Kate’s father’s attack upon the king and will thrust them into the middle of a brewing civil war in the kingdom of Rime.

My Review:

Another just okay fantasy read for me. It wasn’t terrible but not amazing. I think if this had been my first fantasy read ever, I would have been more enthused about it. I feel there are so many YA fantasy books out there at the moment that authors really need to step up their game.


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Also this book could have been shortened. There were a lot of pointless descriptions that were unnecessary. Sometimes this makes me too tired just reading all this stuff!

What I liked was the romantic elements. I am always a big fan of second chance romance stuff. The magic system was interesting and held my attention. I really wish this would have been amazing because that cover is magnificent!

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Cover Reveal: The Ganga Shift

The Ganga Shift

Publisher: Parliament House Press


Life hasn’t been easy for Isabella. She spent most of her childhood in the foster care system, and now at twenty-two she has landed herself in prison on drug charges. Her troubled past is what makes her a perfect candidate for the government’s latest scientific endeavor, Operation Gene Re-sequencing. No one will miss her. No one will question her absence. But, when it’s discovered Isabella is immune to their DNA-changing drugs, she is selected to be used as prey for those who aren’t.

Chase and Brayden couldn’t be more opposite; Chase is calm, reserved, and completely insistent that he will control the changes the virus is causing in his body. Brayden, on the other hand, has always been wild and uninhibited. He welcomes the new animalistic nature coming over him. The one thing they have in common? They both have a taste for the cute little Asian inmate who is now sharing their cell.


Find Out About Other Books by Mary Bernsen at


About the Author


Mary Bernsen is a Florida native living in North Port with her two beautiful children and a third, much larger child whom she affectionately calls husband. She is the Amazon Best Selling Author of the Villain’s Love series and also writes young adult fiction under her pseudonym, M.E Rhines.

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Review: Children of Blood and Bone

Title: Children of Blood and Bone

Author: Tomi Adeyemi

Date of Publication: March 6th, 2018


Goodreads Summary:

Zélie Adebola remembers when the soil of Orïsha hummed with magic. Burners ignited flames, Tiders beckoned waves, and Zelie’s Reaper mother summoned forth souls.

But everything changed the night magic disappeared. Under the orders of a ruthless king, maji were targeted and killed, leaving Zélie without a mother and her people without hope.

Now, Zélie has one chance to bring back magic and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good.

Danger lurks in Orïsha, where snow leoponaires prowl and vengeful spirits wait in the waters. Yet the greatest danger may be Zélie herself as she struggles to control her powers—and her growing feelings for the enemy.

My Review:

Right off the bat this ended up being just an okay read for me—not awesome but not terrible. I thought the snow leoponaires were a very cool concept, and the characters were good, but I just didn’t get the magic system.

There was so much magic talk going on, and I got confused. It also felt like more YA fantasy books tossed in—girl with white hair and magical powers. Can there maybe be like blue hair next time? I did like the diversity in this book, and Zelie held an anger that was rightfully so.


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Also this book is long! I think it would have held my attention more if it had been a hundred pages shorter. I feel like most people will probably like this book, and I wish I would have fallen in love with it because that cover is gorgeous!


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Review: Carve the Mark

Title: Carve the Mark

Author: Veronica Roth

Date of Publication: January 17th, 2017


Goodreads Summary:

In a galaxy powered by the current, everyone has a gift.

Cyra is the sister of the brutal tyrant who rules the Shotet people. Cyra’s current gift gives her pain and power — something her brother exploits, using her to torture his enemies. But Cyra is much more than just a blade in her brother’s hand: she is resilient, quick on her feet, and smarter than he knows.

Akos is the son of a farmer and an oracle from the frozen nation-planet of Thuvhe. Protected by his unusual currentgift, Akos is generous in spirit, and his loyalty to his family is limitless. Once Akos and his brother are captured by enemy Shotet soldiers, Akos is desperate to get this brother out alive — no matter what the cost.

Then Akos is thrust into Cyra’s world, and the enmity between their countries and families seems insurmountable. Will they help each other to survive, or will they destroy one another?

My Review:

First, I did this book as a buddy read with Sheila over at She’s Going Book Crazy. Seriously, check out her blog because she’s awesome! I didn’t know if I would like this book. I did like Roth’s book Divergent, but then the sequels progressively got worse. This one was just too slow for me—I couldn’t connect with the characters, and I didn’t really get the world. Also, I didn’t finish it, so maybe it go completely awesome—I don’t know!

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One thing I will say is I’m not sure what all the hate was about. As a person who has chronic pain via migraines and a husband who deals with RA, I just didn’t get the hate over it. I thought the author dealt with the pain stuff well. I also didn’t really get the people that said there was racism? Again, a fictional book. People need to move on.

Roth does write well, but I just don’t fall in love with her characters as much as I want to. I would still recommend trying and reading it for yourself, because I have a lot of book friends who loved it!



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Review: A Wild and Unremarkable Thing

Title: A Wild and Unremarkable Thing

Author: Jen Castleberry

Date of Publication: January 23rd, 2018


Goodreads Summary:

Fifteen years have passed since a Fire Scale scorched Cayda’s village.  Fifteen years of beatings, of bare kitchen cupboards and sloppy swordplay.  Fifteen years of biting her lip for her father’s cane while her younger sisters did the same for the grimy patrons of the village brothels. Fifteen years of staring steadfastly after beauty in an increasingly ugly world.

Now, with hair shorn and breast bound, Cayda marches into the Summer Alps as Cody, a hopeful Champion seeking a dragon-slayer’s reward, with the full weight of her family’s survival on her shoulders.

But the road between poverty and prosperity is rife with beasts, betrayals, and baser temptations. Sensible Cayda soon discovers that she is not the only Champion with her eye on the prize, or the only one wearing a disguise.
With monsters, gods, and royalty hot on her heels, Cayda must ask herself if victory is worth sacrificing her identity for – or her life.

A Wild and Unremarkable Thing pits girl against dragon in a stunning blend of Greek mythology and medieval lore. Readers will not quickly forget the diverse cast or the thrilling, sexy ride!

My Review:

Wow, I seriously loved the writing in this one. It’s also written in third person present tense which worked really well. There are several POV’s in this, and I actually enjoyed them all, which is hard for me sometimes.

I really felt for Cody AKA Cayda for how she had to live because of her father and what her sister’s had to do for money. Penn was an interesting character, and I loved him! The crown prince had me grinning with his ridiculousness ways, but he was great!

The book had me at death god—plus dragon type stuff that was seriously awesome. Cayda was a great female character that even though she couldn’t be who she truly wanted to be in the beginning, she was still strong.


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Overall, this was the perfect length and a lovely ride that I didn’t want to exit. A fun read that I definitely recommend.

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Review: Moonlight Sins

Title: Moonlight Sins

Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout

Date of Publication: January 30th, 2018


Goodreads Summary:

Julia Hughes has always played it safe until she learned a very painful lesson. Now Julia’s starting over with a job in the Louisiana bayou—and a scorching encounter with a stranger, only to discover he’s Lucian de Vincent… her new employer. The de Vincent brothers share a massive fortune and a dark reputation. Julia cares for their troubled sister, but a menacing presence in the mansion—and the ever-present temptation of Lucian—prove dangerously distracting.

Lucian’s grandmother claimed de Vincent men fall in love once—and hard. Apparently, it’s Lucian’s turn. Julia’s compassionate care of his twin makes Lucian want to lay himself bare. But some secrets are better for Julia not to know.

The recent “suicide” of Lucian’s father is the latest in a string of deaths on the estate. Someone is eliminating the de Vincents. And the best way to get to Lucian may be through Julia…

My Review:

I don’t read a lot of adult romance books, so I wanted to read this one since I like a lot of Armentrout’s stuff. I also hate, hate, hate the cover! But I also hate ab covers… What I was really hoping for was a Louisiana, Gothicish, creepy vibe, but I didn’t get that. But that’s okay.

Romance was great as always, and I already knew most of Armentrout’s male characters are dominant. But, I have to be honest here—at first Lucian creeped me out. Instead of just calling Julia her name all the time, he would say, “Ms. Hughes.” It just comes off as if she was seventy, and a school teacher or something. But, I mean if someone called me “Mrs. Robinson,” I would tell them to get out of here! Then Lucian’s persistence was a little weird. Eventually, I did come to like him, though—and wanted to know more of his backstory.

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My favorite aspect of the book was the mystery of it. I wish there would have been more in it! I liked the whole thing with Lucian’s sister, hearing footsteps, etc. Now, I did guess early on what was going on, but it didn’t affect my liking the book. I was just like, “I knew it!”

I did like Julia and felt she was a strong, independent character. Both of the brothers were interesting. But I’m a little disappointed that Gabe’s book is next, because I really am wanting to know more about Devlin and be inside his head! Overall, this was a fun and romantic read.


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Review: Slasher Girls & Monster Boys

Title: Slasher Girls & Monster Boys

Authors: Stefan Bachmann, Leigh Bardugo, Kendare Blake, A. G. Howard, Jay Kristoff, Marie Lu, Jonathan Maberry, Danielle Paige, Carrie Ryan, Megan Shepherd, Nova Ren Suma, McCormick Templeman, April Genevieve Tucholke, Cat Winters

Date of Publication: August 18th, 2015


Goodreads Summary:

A host of the smartest young adult authors come together in this collection of scary stories and psychological thrillers curated by Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea’s April Genevieve Tucholke.

Each story draws from a classic tale or two—sometimes of the horror genre, sometimes not—to inspire something new and fresh and terrifying. There are no superficial scares here; these are stories that will make you think even as they keep you on the edge of your seat. From bloody horror to supernatural creatures to unsettling, all-too-possible realism, this collection has something for any reader looking for a thrill.

My Review:

This book of short horrorish stories wasn’t as amazing as I thought it would be, especially with all the awesome authors that are in this one! But, it wasn’t bad either, just okay overall. There were some really good ones, though.


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The Birds of Azalea Street by: Nova Ren Suma I didn’t really get this one. It’s inspired by the Birds but in no way does it compare to that at all!

In the Forest Dark and Deep by: Carrie Ryan – This was a very cool and creepy Alice in Wonderland inspired story with a giant March Hare!

Emmeline by: Cat Winters – Very good! I loved the setting and the writing! Emmeline was a very interesting character!

Verse Chorus Verse by: Leigh Bardugo – This one was weird but not in an amazing way. I was surprised that I didn’t like this more because I generally love Leigh Bardugo!

Hide-And-Seek by: Megan Shepherd – Ah—yes. This one was really great! The main character was also one smart cookie! Plus the whole trying to avoid death thing was awesome!

The Dark, Scary Parts and All by: Danielle Paige – This one was all kinds of fun! The story was engaging, and Damien was an interesting character!

The Flicker, The Fingers, The Beat, The Sigh by: April Genevieve Tucholke – I really liked the two inspirations for this one. The story was good, but I hate the main character Theo. He was such an ass and got pretty much what he deserved.

Fat Girl with a Knife by: Jonathan Maberry – This one was all kinds of fun! Also Dahlia was a freaking awesome character!

Sleepless by: Jay Kristoff – There was one twist that I did not see coming, but the other one I did. I actually really liked this one at first, but then it faded to just being okay.

M by: Stefan Bachmann – I couldn’t get into this one!

The Girl Without a Face by: Marie Lu – Marie’s writing is always good, but this one was just okay for me.

A Girl Who Dreamed of Snow by: McCormick Templeman – The writing was good in this one, but I wasn’t completely captivated.

Stitches by: A.G. Howard – I thought this one was pretty awesome, and Howard’s writings and descriptions are always so entrancing.

On the I-5 by: Kendare Blake – I liked the ending on this one!


Do you like horror stories?

Review: Everless

Title: Everless

Author: Sara Holland

Date of Publication: January 2nd, 2018


Goodreads Summary:

In the kingdom of Sempera, time is currency—extracted from blood, bound to iron, and consumed to add time to one’s own lifespan. The rich aristocracy, like the Gerlings, tax the poor to the hilt, extending their own lives by centuries.

No one resents the Gerlings more than Jules Ember. A decade ago, she and her father were servants at Everless, the Gerlings’ palatial estate, until a fateful accident forced them to flee in the dead of night. When Jules discovers that her father is dying, she knows that she must return to Everless to earn more time for him before she loses him forever.

But going back to Everless brings more danger—and temptation—than Jules could have ever imagined. Soon she’s caught in a tangle of violent secrets and finds her heart torn between two people she thought she’d never see again. Her decisions have the power to change her fate—and the fate of time itself.

My review:

The first thing I thought when I read the summary for this book was that terrible movie In Time with Justin Timberlake. Come to find out it was a lot like that but a fantasy version.


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I found there was some creative aspects, but more than anything there was a whole lot of nonsense and soap opera feels. Is it possible soap opera fantasy can be a thing? Because that’s what this is! It was also a mixture of several other fantasies I have read.

My main pet peeve was this girl was so in love with this guy, Roan, yet she hadn’t seen him in ten years since the age of seven???? How can you even remember most of that? How can you even claim love at age seven?? I can understand if the last time she saw him was like around age thirteen, but come on!!! Also, Roan felt underdeveloped as did his brother Liam. It was always Jules remembering she hated Liam when she was seven, so he must be evil, right?

It was pretty predictable, but I will say the author wrote well. I just really wasn’t a big fan of Jules and her thoughts. Plus, most of the story made no sense. I normally love stuff that doesn’t make sense so not sure what the heck happened here. Again, the whole book was her thinking back to age seven… I’ll most likely still check out the next book at the library just to see how it ends.


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Review: Sky in the Deep

Title: Sky in the Deep

Author: Adrienne Young

Date of Publication: April 24th, 2018


Goodreads Summary:

Seventeen-year-old Eelyn’s world is war. Raised to fight alongside her Aska clansmen in a generations-old blood feud against the Riki, her life is brutal but simple: fight and survive. Until the day she sees the impossible on the battlefield—her brother, fighting with the enemy—the brother she watched die five years ago.

Faced with her brother’s betrayal, she must survive the winter in the mountains with the Riki if she wants to make it back to the fjord after the thaw. But when she begins to see herself in the people she’s been taught to hate, the world Eelyn once knew begins to crumble. And after the village is raided by a ruthless clan many believe to be a myth, Eelyn is given no choice but to trust Fiske, her brother’s friend who has tried more than once to kill her. Together, they must end the blood feud between their clans or watch their people be slaughtered.

A lush, Viking-age inspired fantasy about loyalty, forgiveness, and the definition of family.

My Review:

So, is this really a stand alone? I mean, really? Because I’m tired of every single fantasy book having more and more books. The ending was awesome! But if the author wants to do a spin off, I would be okay with that.

Anyway, this book had lots of vikings, and lots of awesome hair. I want viking hair. There was brutal fighting mixed with family bonds, friendship, and romance—which filled my cup of tea completely up.


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Let’s just say I am all about axes now. Eelyn was a strong character, even though she questioned herself, questioned her people, questioned the Riki—it all made her human and the perfect MC. Fiske was quiet and stoic, but when he loved people such as his family, he protected them fiercely.

Overall, this book was a whole lot of fun, and I loved the author’s writing. I will definitely be reading whatever she puts out next!

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Review: The Last Girl on Earth

Title: The Last Girl on Earth

Author: Alexandra Blogier

Date of Publication: January 23rd, 2018

Goodreads Summary:

Li has a father and a sister who love her. A best friend, Mirabae, to share things with. She goes to school and hangs out at the beach and carefully follows the rules. She has to. Everyone she knows–her family, her teachers, her friends–is an alien. And she is the only human left on Earth.

A secret that could end her life.

The Abdoloreans hijacked the planet sixteen years ago, destroying all human life. Li’s human-sympathizer father took her in as a baby and has trained her to pass as one of them. The Abdoloreans appear human. But they don’t think with human minds or feel with human hearts. And they have special abilities no human could ever have.

Fit in or die.

When Li meets Ryn, she’s swept up in a relationship that could have disastrous consequences. How far will Li go to stay alive? Will she save herself–and in turn, the human race–or will she be the final witness to humanity’s destruction?

My Review:

What I liked best about this book was that it was a quick read! Every book I read lately seems to be like 500 pages or more. It also had my least favorite line “I released a breath I didn’t know I had been holding.” Come on! That sentence never makes any freaking sentence!

Ahead of time, this book definitely felt more like a contemporary than anything. There is this alien race now on Earth and Li is the only human. Since the setting is on Earth, not much seems different besides, they train hard and are super smart. Now, I didn’t mind that it felt more contemporary because the romance is sweet. But, I know how crazy some people get when books are more focused on the romance than sci-fi.

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Li and Ryn were both super likable. The romance is definitely inst-attraction which I don’t mine at all, but the romance built slower so that was nice. I’m also not super sure if this is a stand alone or not. The ending is left where there could be another one, but I think it should stay open ended.


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