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Review: Black Heart

Title: Black Heart

Author: Holly Black

Date of Publication: April 3rd, 2012

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Goodreads Summary:

In a world where Magic is illegal.

Cassel Sharpe has the most deadly ability of all. With one touch, he can transform any object – including a person – into something else entirely. And that makes him a wanted man. The Feds are willing to forgive all his past crimes if he’ll only leave his con artist family behind and go straight. But why does going straight feel so crooked?

For one thing, it means being on the opposite side of the law from Lila, the girl he loves. She’s the daughter of a mob boss and getting ready to join the family business herself. Though Cassel is pretty sure she can never love him back, he can’t stop obsessing over her. Which would be bad enough, even if her father wasn’t keeping Cassel’s mother prisoner in a posh apartment and threatening not to let her leave until she returns the priceless diamond she scammed off him years ago. Too bad she can’t remember where she put it.

The Feds say they need Cassel to get rid of a powerful man who is spinning dangerously out of control. But if they want Cassel to use his unique talent to hurt people, what separates the good guys from the bad ones? Or is everyone just out to con him?

Time is running out, and all Cassel’s magic and cleverness might not be enough to save him. With no easy answers and no one he can trust, love might be the most dangerous gamble of all.

 

My Review:

This series was seriously addicting, and I love, love, love Cassel! He’s a character that will forever stick with me, and my favorite character by Holly Black thus far!

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We start this book out with Lila hating Cassel after book 2, and all the moments between the two of them were spectacular. I got mad, I said aww, I said aww again! They are so cute! Then there are twists and turns which kept me on my toes. Cassel’s friend, Sam, was a lovable idiot! Cassel’s brother seriously needs his own book!

I like that things aren’t black and white, and Cassel as well as the other characters all live in the gray area of life but still have good hearts! If you haven’t read this series yet, I highly recommend it! So freaking good!

 

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Review: Two Thousand Years

Title: Two Thousand Years

Author: M. Dalto

Date of Publication: December 11th, 2018

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Goodreads Summary:

Two thousand years ago, the Prophecy of Fire and Light foretold the coming of the Queen Empress who would lead the Empire into a time of peace and tranquility. But instead of the coming of a prosperous world, a forbidden love for the Empress waged a war that ravaged the land, creating a chasm between the factions, raising the death toll of innocent lives until the final, bloody battle.

Centuries later, Alexandra, a twenty-two-year-old barista living in Boston, is taken to an unfamiliar realm of mystery and magic where her life is threatened by Reylor, its banished Lord Steward. She crosses paths with Treyan, the arrogant and seductive Crown Prince of the Empire, and together they discover how their lives, and their love, are so intricately intertwined by a Prophecy set in motion so many years ago.

Alex, now the predestined Queen Empress Alexstrayna, whose arrival was foretold by the Annals of the Empire, controls the fate of her new home as war rages between the Crown Prince and Lord Steward. Either choice could tear her world apart as she attempts to keep the Empire’s torrid history from repeating itself. In a realm where betrayal and revenge will be as crucial to her survival as love and honor, Alex must discover whether it is her choice – or her fate – that determines how she survives the Empire’s rising conflicts.

My Review:

When I first read this blurb, I was like finally an NA book that sounds awesome with a good plot. And let me tell you, the book did live up to the blurb! Plus, yes, plenty of swoon. I mean, swoooooooooooooooooooon!

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Dear, Alex—you were pretty badass and also had to put up with some crazy crap! Dear, Treyan—you have my heart! Dear, Reylor—you are a crazy, crazy thing, but I still like you! Does that make me a bad person? The characters were on point! Plus, I got several things that I wasn’t suspecting, and when that happens, that makes me a super happy camper!

The world building was wonderfully done, the writing was addicting, and the overall plot was superb! Oh, and yes, there is a cliffhanger and my heart will be asunder until I read book 2!

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How would you feel to enter another realm?

Review: To Dream is to Die

Title: To Dream is to Die

Author: Sarah Lampkin

Date of publication: January 1st, 2019

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Goodreads Summary:

Eighteen-year-old Brenna Whit is entering Nephesburg College as a freshman and starting hoping to meet new
people, but she hides a dark secret: because of an accident that happened three years ago, her spirit wanders the
Fade whenever she falls asleep. It’s something she wants to keep hidden from the world, but when she sees someone
watching her in spirit form, she fears the secret’s out. With the demons and fairies that wander the Fade, Brenna has
enough to worry about. Now that she’s in college, it’s schoolwork, new friends, new enemies, and something under
the surface happening at Nephesburg College. Only time will tell if she will survive her first year…

My Review:

First, finally a NA book that isn’t revolved around men’s abs! I loved the college setting, too. It was like if Buffy were in college with Xander and Willow, but instead of vampires it was a unique spirit type of world!

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Brenna was an awesome MC. She was funny and sarcastic and not annoying! Can I just also say that my favorite character was Damon! I want to keep him in my pocket and carry him around with me along with his awesome personality!

Loved the descriptions, the world, and the writing! I love things that are dark, feel real, and still have a bit of humor and that’s exactly what this book is! I need to know what happens next and I can’t wait to read book two!!

 

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Do you generally have dreams or nightmares?

Review: Red Glove

Title: Red Glove

Author: Holly Black

Date of Publication: April 5th, 2011

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Goodreads Summary:

In Cassel Sharpe’s world, they go together. Cassel always though he was an ordinary guy, until he realized his memories were being manipulated by his brothers. Now he knows the truth – he’s the most powerful curse worker around. A touch of his hand can transform anything – or anyone – into something else.

That was how Lila, the girl he loved, became a white cat. Cassel was tricked into thinking he killed her, when actually he tried to save her. Now that she’s human again, he should be overjoyed. Trouble is, Lila’s been cursed to love him, a little gift from his emotion-worker mom. And if Lila’s love is as phony as Cassel’s made-up memories, then he can’t believe anything she says or does.

When Cassel’s oldest brother is murdered, the Feds recruit Cassel to help make sense of the only clue – crime-scene images of a woman in red gloves. But the mob is after Cassel too – they know how valuable he could be to them. Cassel is going to have to stay one step ahead of both sides just to survive. But where can he turn when he can’t trust anyone – least of all, himself?

Love is a curse and the con is the only answer in a game too dangerous to lose.

My Review:

An excellent sequel indeed! Makes me want to go out and get me some red gloves to parade around in!

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Cassel is definitely one of my favorite male characters ever! He makes wrong choices, a lot, but he’s so dang likable—I want to squeeze his cheeks! Of course, Lila got worked in the previous book, so Cassel doesn’t know if he can trust himself around her because her feelings for him he doesn’t believe them to be real. It’s a mess of feelings, and an addicting one!

Also his brother, Phillip, is dead, so it’s quite the mystery to figure out how he ended up that way. And the freaking ending! Another cliffhanger to where I have to read the next book! Loved it! And the magic system is just so cool!

 

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Have you read this series?

November Reads 2018

What I’m reading:

These are my for sure reads this month. I’m going to be finishing up Kingdom of Ash and then doing a buddy read for The Coldest Girl in Coldtown. I’m also excited to read an ARC of Serious Moonlight! I’ll read any contemporary by Jenn Bennett! Then my last read is to finish up the Curse Workers series by Holly Black, which I have loved! Oh, and I’ll also be writing for NaNo so a lot going on!!

Some November Releases:

 

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What are you reading this month?

Review: White Cat

Title: White Cat

Author: Holly Black

Date of Publication: April 30th, 2019

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Goodreads Summary:

Cassel comes from a family of curse workers: people who have the power to change your emotions, your memories, your luck, by the slightest touch of their hands. And since curse work is illegal, they’re all criminals. Many become mobsters and con artists. But not Cassel. He hasn’t got magic, so he’s an outsider; the straight kid in a crooked family. You just have to ignore one small detail – he killed his best friend, Lila, three years ago.

Cassel has carefully built up a facade of normalcy, blending into the crowd. But his facade starts to crumble when he finds himself sleepwalking, propelled into the night by terrifying dreams about a white cat that wants to tell him something. He’s noticing other disturbing things, too, including the strange behavior of his two brothers. They are keeping secrets from him. As Cassel begins to suspect he’s part of a huge con game, he must unravel his past and his memories. To find out the truth, Cassel will have to outcon the conmen.

My Review:

At first when I read the blurb I saw mobsters and con artists and was like, I don’t know man, that doesn’t sound good. I’ve loved everything else so far by Holly Black, so I was like, well, let me go ahead and take a chance on this. Plus, what a weirdly cool title. And I LOVE weird things!

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Cassel was so awesome, and it felt nice to read a whole book from a guy’s perspective. Also, he seemed like a real teen boy. And the magic system? Very interesting with the whole we-have-to-wear-gloves-thing. It’s one of the best urban fantasies I’ve read!

There are some pretty great twists, and that freaking ending! Oh man, I need to start the next book. Seriously!

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Review: Trick or Death

Title: Trick or Death

Author: Calvin Demmer

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Goodreads Summary:

Halloween was the perfect time for Barry Steiner to put his plan into action. The only problem was not everyone in the neighborhood wanted to play his victim.

My Review:

I have yet to be disappointed by Demmer’s horror short stories! Seriously loved this one! Also, a hint… there’s one of my favorite creature’s ever in it!!

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What impresses me so much is how Demmer always can put such great characterization in short stories! You get a bit of romance, a bit of horror, and a bit of awesomeness! Barry was a relatable character. I felt I would have done some of the idiotic stuff he did when I was his age!

The writing was on point, the setting was perfect, and I can’t wait to read more short stories from the author!!

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What’s your favorite scary story?