anna · Book Reviews

Fallen Flame by J.M. Miller

*******I received an e-arc from Netgalley. These are my 100% honest opinions.******

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Edition: eBook (yet again, I didn’t download it before the cut off date so I purchased my own copy)

Pages: 281

Series or Standalone: Series, 1st (Fallen Flame)

Published: June 19th, 2017

Publisher: Self published? (I think)

Goodreads Synopsis: “Nineteen years ago, on the island kingdom of Garlin, a girl was born. With charred skin as rough as rock, Vala was instantly feared. For how could one be scorched by magic when it had perished ages before?
Recognizing an asset, the royal family welcomed her on their Guard. Her detail: the prince.
To watch. To protect. She has grown with him, lives her life for him.
When the high kingdom’s princess comes to assess the prince, assassins of rival courtiers come to claim his life. One nearly succeeds in his mission. But with shadowy movements and charred skin like her own, Vala knows he is not like the rest.
As threats to the prince continue and questions about Vala’s life begin to rise, she faces a fear worse than fire or water, worse even than losing him.
She fears finding out who she truly is.”

My Rating: 5/5 Hot Aliens

I just finished this novel and I think J.M. Miller murdered my heart with this novel.

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I loved the plot of the novel. It had so many twists and turns. You guys know I typically can see what is going to happen in a novel, but honestly, I only guessed maybe half or less of this novel. It’s written that well. This book is kind of an emotional rollercoaster. I felt so many emotions towards the events and characters. I loved them, I disliked them, I was annoyed with their actions, and I shipped them. I loved how the novel ends. It sets it up for the second novel perfectly. I cannot wait till the next novel comes out!

As I mentioned, I really liked the character development. Vala had great character growth throughout their novel. I loved the other characters and loved watching them develop in character as well. The characters didn’t just have one specific personality treat to them. I love when authors do this because it makes them realistic. The amount of secrets we find out during the novel and questions that are unanswered because they are for the next novel are endless. It was interesting seeing how far trust went in the novel. The realistic portrayal of trust was amazing.

Basically, I fell in love with this novel. I plan on checking out J.M.’s other writings while I impatiently wait for the next novel to try to fill the void of not knowing what happens next.

Xx Sincerely,

Anna

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anna · Book Reviews

Werewolf High 1-4 + Christmas Novella by Anita Oh


Edition(s): eBook

Pages: 163 (The Truth Spell), 159 (The Tiny Curse), 120 (The Body Swap), 156 (The Soul Bond), 52 (A Very Werey Christmas)

Series or Standalone: Series, Werewolf High

Publisher: Self-Published

Goodreads Synopsis of First Novel: “As soon as I stepped onto the grounds of Amaris High, I knew I’d made a big mistake. I could never fit in at such a snobbish school – I was more IT girl than “it girl”. But then I saw him.

Sam Spencer. My childhood best friend. But it couldn’t be. Sam Spencer had died three years ago, on the night that changed everything. I need to know what happened, why he’s suddenly not dead and is hanging out with a bunch of rich kids.

When the school is hit by a truth spell, it seems like the perfect chance to find out what Sam and his creepy new friends are hiding, but the weirder things get, the less I’m sure I want to know. Even for Sam, even for the free food, Amaris High might be more trouble than it’s worth.”

Pick up the first book on Kindle for Free! https://www.amazon.com/Truth-Spell-Werewolf-High-Book-ebook/dp/B018CLWMF4/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1499666264&sr=8-3&keywords=anita+oh

I bought The Truth Spell as a free ebook. I thought it sounded cheesy and I love novels that include werewolves so I decided to give this a go. And I am so happy that I gave this series a shot! It definitely isn’t as cheesy as I thought it would be. The plot of these novels may seem a bit cliche at first glance but oh my gosh they definitely aren’t. The series so far has had so many different turns and the plot seriously is so good. I’m honestly just surprised because it’s not what I expected from this series, but its so much more than I could ask for from it.

I really loved the characters. I love how they clash, yet they go together so well. That’s not easily done within a novel. The main character, Lucy, is such a likeable character for the most part. So much happens to her during these novels and she’s as strong as she can be during these times. I love how she stays determined throughout every obstacle thrown her way.

The Christmas novella was so adorable! I was smiling while reading the ending because of how cute it was.

I highly recommend that you read this series according to release date so you don’t spoil yourself. I hope you guys give this series a chance because I’d love to be able discuss it together!

Xx Sincerely,

Anna

anna · Book Reviews

Soulmated by Shaila Patel

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Edition: Physical, Paperback

Pages: 300

Series or Standalone: Series, 1st (Joining of Souls)

Published: January 24th, 2017

Publisher: Month 9 Books

Goodreads Synopsis: “Two souls. One Fate.

Eighteen-year-old Liam Whelan, an Irish royal empath, has been searching for his elusive soulmate. The rare union will cement his family’s standing in empath politics and afford the couple legendary powers, while also making them targets of those seeking to oust them.

Laxshmi Kapadia, an Indian-American high school student from a traditional family, faces her mother’s ultimatum: Graduate early and go to medical school, or commit to an arranged marriage.

When Liam moves next door to Laxshmi, he’s immediately and inexplicably drawn to her. In Liam, Laxshmi envisions a future with the freedom to follow her heart.

Liam’s father isn’t convinced Laxshmi is “The One” and Laxshmi’s mother won’t even let her talk to their handsome new neighbor. Will Liam and Laxshmi defy expectations and embrace a shared destiny? Or is the risk of choosing one’s own fate too great a price for the soulmated?

I fell in love with this novel.

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The characters were great. I loved Laxshmi’s attitude and her goals. Liam was just…… okay he’s one of my new book boyfriends. I loved his personality and his determination. The chemistry between the two was well written and kept me thinking “oh my gosh, please just kiss already. New OTP”. Shaila wrote the characters so well and it was really nice to have information on more than just the two main characters.

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The plot and writing was amazing. Shaila’s writing reminds me of Jennifer L. Armentrout in the best way possible. Her writing keeps you enthralled within the novel and makes you unable to put it down. I loved the plot. It was different than other soulmate novels that I’ve read before. The empathic powers were really intriguing and I really want to learn more.

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If you haven’t picked up this novel, you should definitely add it to your TBR!

Amazon – Book DepositoryiBook – Barnes & Noble

Xx Sincerely,

Anna

anna · Blog and Promo Tours · Book Reviews

Shattered Blue and a 20% Check In of Renegade Red by Lauren Bird Horowitz

**** I am reviewing this for part of a blog tour. I was supposed to receive an ecopy, but I ended up buying my own copy after not being able to find the link and not wanting to bother anyone by emailing them. All opinions are my own.****

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Edition: Kindle

Pages: 336 and 420

Series or Standalone: Series, 1st and 2nd

Published: September 15th, 2016 and March 14th, 2017

Publisher: Papaloa Press

Goodreads Synopsis for Shattered Blue: “For Noa and Callum, being together is dangerous, even deadly. From the start, sixteen-year-old Noa senses that the mysterious transfer student to her Monterey boarding school is different. Callum unnerves and intrigues her, and even as she struggles through family tragedy, she’s irresistibly drawn to him. Soon they are bound by his deepest secret: Callum is Fae, banished from another world after a loss hauntingly similar to her own.

But in Noa’s world, Callum needs a special human energy, Light, to survive; his body steals it through touch—or a kiss. And Callum’s not the only Fae on the hunt. When Callum is taken, Noa must decide: Will she sacrifice everything to save him? Even if it means learning their love may not be what she thought?

 

I am not sure at this point in time whether I will finish this novel or not.

 

Xx Sincerely,

Anna

anna · Book Reviews · Uncategorized

Life After Juliet by Shannon Lee Alexander

******I received an e-arc of the book from the author. All thoughts are my own*******

*** Spoilers for Love and Other Unknown Variables. I suggest you go read that book quickly then come back to this review because it is a phenomenal book.***

 

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Edition: e-ARC

Pages: 304

Series or Standalone: Standalone/Companion Novel

Published: July 5th, 2016

Publisher: Entangled Teen

 

Goodreads Synopsis: “Becca Hanson was never able to make sense of the real world. When her best friend Charlotte died, she gave up on it altogether. Fortunately, Becca can count on her books to escape—to other times, other places, other people…

Until she meets Max Herrera. He’s experienced loss, too, and his gorgeous, dark eyes see Becca the way no one else in school can.

As it turns out, kissing is a lot better in real life than on a page. But love and life are a lot more complicated in the real world…and happy endings aren’t always guaranteed.

5/5 Hot Aliens

Okay, so let’s start with the obvious. This review is super late. You want to know why? Because this book caused me to look back on hard events that took place in my life and I was not emotionally ready for that or for this review yet. I had pushed the event out of my mind as soon as it happened many years ago and never let myself process the pain and sorrow. I feel like I am able to talk about it now, at least, mostly talk about it. I’ll be very vague probably about the event that took place in my life.

This book starts after Charlotte dies, continuing to follow the character from Love and Other Unknown Variables. Only this time, we follow Becca, Charlie’s younger sister who had become friends with Charlotte. Becca Hanson is an avid reader, like ourselves. She has counted away from Charlotte’s death by pages, 108,023 pages to be exact from where the book starts. Becca is sort of escaping the world through reading which reminds me of how I was a few years back (not the event that made this such a hard book and review for me, but it was still one of the worst events of my entire life). Anyways, she is trying not the face the death of her friend. Charlie has gone off to college which leaves her  with her parents alone.

I really liked the plot. The play fit in perfectly with the rest of the plot and helped the book move along smoothly. Plus, being a theatre geek, it made me smile to see a book mention a play then actually go ahead and not forget about it.

The rest of the cast were amazing. I enjoyed how each character was well rounded. The plot was also phenomenal.

 

I just wanted to say I cried A LOT during this.

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*Tiny spoiler and emotions*

**Tiny spoiler and emotions*

***Tiny spoiler and emotions***

****Tiny spoiler and emotions****

Don’t say I didn’t warn you

So…. At one point in the novel, they are by a railroad. If I remember correctly, she is with a friend (I forget which character exactly) and they are discussing how one of their friends or siblings walked in front of a moving train. I had a friend die in a car crash with a train. I kind of pushed it away when it happened and refused to think about it. This book kind of forced me to think about it which actually was a good thing. I’m slightly getting better at being okay with showing emotion now.

As for Becca’s loss of her best friend, I relate to that because the girl who died had been my best friend throughout my childhood and died after I hadn’t been able to see her for a year because she went to another country for a year. I don’t want to go into anymore details. Just know this was extremely hard for me to read and write because of the emotions and memories I have.

Xx Sincerely,

Anna

anna · Book Reviews

Poison’s Kiss by Breeana Shields

******I received the arc from the Penguin B-Fest First in Line thing. All thoughts are my own*******

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Edition: ARC

Pages: 304

Series or Standalone: Series, Poison’s Kiss

Published: January 10th, 2017

Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers

Goodreads Synopsis: “Marinda has kissed dozens of boys. They all die afterward. It’s a miserable life, but being a visha kanya—a poison maiden—is what she was created to do. Marinda serves the Raja by dispatching his enemies with only her lips as a weapon.

Until now, the men she was ordered to kiss have been strangers, enemies of the kingdom. Then she receives orders to kiss Deven, a boy she knows too well to be convinced he needs to die. She begins to question who she’s really working for. And that is a thread that, once pulled, will unravel more than she can afford to lose.

This rich, surprising, and accessible debut is based in Indian folklore and delivers a story that will keep readers on the edge of their seats.

AmazonBarnes & NobleBook Depository

My Rating: 4/5 Hot Aliens

The beginning was extremely hard to get into. Okay, it may have taken me half the book or a little more for me to actually get 100% interested.

Note: this book doesn’t have a love triangle 🙂 That was one of the main things I enjoyed about this book. While I don’t mind love triangles, it is nice to read a book that is different with the romance than most books.

Marinda definitely was not my favorite character, but she was a likable character for the most part. I understand why she made the decisions that she did, but at some points, I just wanted to shake her and say, “ughh but it was obvious” (more on that later on). I also was not a fan of Iyla. Her character kind of fell flat to me. I feel like she just kept being mentioned or showing up without it ever going into depth of who her character truly was. Deven and Mani were my favorite characters. Deven was such a different character. I feel like his character near the end of the novel was more unique than what usually happens. Mani  was just a little cutie.

The plot was… well… a tiny bit predictable. I realized one of the most important plot points in the book by the third page into chapter four. I realized later on another key point and thought “wow. how is Marinda not suspecting something?”. Of course, there were a few spots that I didn’t realize what was happening before I got to them. Like when someone shows up again in a certain chapter and you are like, “yess a character we need more of”. I did enjoy the premise of the book. While a girl being poisonous isn’t a new idea, as the novel progresses, the idea becomes more unique and sticks out from the other novels. I will say though that it does slightly remind me of The Sin-Eater’s Daughter by Melinda Salisbury in certain ways (I knew it reminded me of something but I couldn’t remember what so then I got on Goodreads and saw that Emily from Falling for YA had marked it as to-read with a note basically saying it sounded like that book).

Overall, the book was pretty good. I enjoyed the last maybe 150 pages a lot more than the beginning because I feel like things started to finally get in motion. I couldn’t put the book down once I got past halfway. I was glued to the book to find out what was going to happen to the characters. The ending made me really need the second book, but I’ll have to wait till 2018 for that.

Xx Sincerely,

Anna

anna · Book Reviews

The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli

********* I won an arc in a giveaway. All opinions are 100% my own***********

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Edition: ARC

Pages: 352

Series or Standalone: Standalone

Published: April 11th, 2017

Publisher: Balzer + Bray

Goodreads Synopsis: “Seventeen-year-old Molly Peskin-Suso knows all about unrequited love. No matter how many times her twin sister, Cassie, tells her to woman up, Molly can’t stomach the idea of rejection. So she’s careful. Fat girls always have to be careful.

Then a cute new girl enters Cassie’s orbit, and for the first time ever, Molly’s cynical twin is a lovesick mess. Meanwhile, Molly’s totally not dying of loneliness—except for the part where she is. Luckily, Cassie’s new girlfriend comes with a cute hipster-boy sidekick. If Molly can win him over, she’ll get her first kiss and she’ll get her twin back.
There’s only one problem: Molly’s coworker, Reid. He’s a chubby Tolkien superfan with a season pass to the Ren Faire, and there’s absolutely no way Molly could fall for him.

AmazonBarnes & NobleBook Depository

My Rating: 5/5 Hot Aliens

First off, I’d like to say that Becky’s writing is beautiful. Her writing seamlessly draws you in and makes you care for every single character.

The characters in this novel were well-rounded, realistic and diverse. I love how the side characters ended up being important to the plot-line. Cassie was very charismatic and confident, while Molly is more reserved. Molly is insecure with herself and has a fear of rejection. I loved how realistic the character of Molly was. Her insecurities and fears were those that many people have today.

The plot moved smoothly. I felt like there were definitely a few subplots that were also extremely important. I would discuss them, but I don’t want to spoil the book. The relationships moved slow enough (which is a good thing). It wasn’t rushed which made me so happy!

My Feelings in GIFs:

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Xx Sincerely,

Anna

anna · Book Reviews

Spells and Sorcery by S. Usher Evans

******** I received an e-arc from the author. These are my 100% honest opinions.*******

29933704Edition: e-ARC

Pages: 386

Series or Standalone: Series, 1st in Lexie Carrigan Chronicles

Published: October 4th, 2016

Publisher: Sun’s Golden Ray Publishing

Goodreads Synopsis: “You have magic.

One sentence, three words, four syllables. Enough to change my life forever. And I’m not talking about the whole spells and sorcery thing.

Lexie Carrigan thought the weirdest thing about her was she preferred watching documentaries and reading the newspaper to reality TV and Twitter. But on the eve of her fifteenth birthday, her aunt and sisters drop a bomb–she’s magical.

Now the girl who never made waves is blowing up her nightstand and trying to keep from wreaking havoc on her school. When a kind stranger shows up with all the answers, Lexie hopes he’ll be able to help her control her newfound powers. But Gavon may not be as kind as he seems, and soon Lexie finds out that being magical is the least weird thing about her.

Spells and Sorcery is the first YA fantasy from S. Usher Evans, author of the Razia series, the Madion War Trilogy and Empath.

So…….. I loved this book. The book drew me in, grabbed my attention, and didn’t let go. The characters had such different personalities which was really nice to see in a novel. Usually, when I read a book, only two or three personalities stick out to me. But with this book, I could honestly say that everyone character is different from the other. And I love that so much. It just making the novel more interesting because personalities clash when brought together, some go together perfectly for the most part.

The plot seemed unique, which was also really nice. I don’t think I’ve read or looked at another book that goes in this direction. Now, of course, there were parts that you could call “typical” to some YA plot points, but doesn’t every book just about have those checked off?

I mostly guessed everything. Well, almost. There was one part near the end that surprised me. I’m not the best person to ask if something is predictable though because as you guys know, I usually can guess what major events happen.

Spells and Sorcery has so many bookish references in it. They are all at amazing parts, sometimes when you wouldn’t think a reference would work because it is more serious or sad or something, but the reference would fit perfectly.

 

5/5 Hot Aliens

Xx Sincerely,

Anna

anna · Book Reviews

Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake

******** I was fortunate enough to get an arc from Book Con. These are my 100% honest opinions.*******

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Edition: ARC

Pages: 416

Series or Standalone: Series, Three Dark Crowns

Published: September 20th, 2016

Publisher: Harper Teen

Goodreads Synopsis: “Every generation on the island of Fennbirn, a set of triplets is born: three queens, all equal heirs to the crown and each possessor of a coveted magic. Mirabella is a fierce elemental, able to spark hungry flames or vicious storms at the snap of her fingers. Katharine is a poisoner, one who can ingest the deadliest poisons without so much as a stomachache. Arsinoe, a naturalist, is said to have the ability to bloom the reddest rose and control the fiercest of lions.

But becoming the Queen Crowned isn’t solely a matter of royal birth. Each sister has to fight for it. And it’s not just a game of win or lose…it’s life or death. The night the sisters turn sixteen, the battle begins. The last queen standing gets the crown.

If only it was that simple. Katharine is unable to tolerate the weakest poison, and Arsinoe, no matter how hard she tries, can’t make even a weed grow. The two queens have been shamefully faking their powers, taking care to keep each other, the island, and their powerful sister Mirabella none the wiser. But with alliances being formed, betrayals taking shape, and ruthless revenge haunting the queens’ every move, one thing is certain: the last queen standing might not be the strongest…but she may be the darkest.

I’ll be straightforward and honest with this review: it’s not perfect. It has many imperfections that some people find to be too blunt to ignore. I see their points and agree, but at the same time, I loved this book.

Now, stop being so shocked that I gave a book with imperfections five stars. I loved the characters from this novel. I felt like all the queens were all extremely strong characters. I loved each their personalities. I have so much I want to say, but can’t because of spoilers. My favorite character had to be

The book focused more on the side character of one of the queens (not going to say who), but I was personally fine with that. I feel like it made the book more unique in a way.

The plot was as the synopsis stated. I loved how it took off though. The plot focused on the three sisters and their lives. I really liked how we got to see how each queen was instead of just following one of them the entire book. That’s what made the book more of a five star read for me. If we had only followed one queen, for example: Katherine, I feel like we wouldn’t have gotten the entire story.

The last 50 pages leave you needing more while also leaving you crying because you can’t get more for another year.

Rating: 5/5 Hot Aliens

Have you read this book?

Xx Sincerely,

Anna

Book Reviews · Natalie

The Sin Eater’s Daughter by Melinda Salisbury

Two years ago in a galaxy far, far away, I received a package containing an arc of The Sin Eater’s Daughter in exchange for a review.  Which I wrote.  In a way.  It wasn’t so much a review as an intense reaction to something I could not fathom into words:

 

 

****.  ************************.  WHY?!?  I didn’t see it coming, man. I feel so….it’s just..I’m so….UGH!  I can’t say without..it’s like…when my review comes closer to the release, my feels will be released.

 

Just one thing:

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I really did

 

Happy Waiting

 

 

Suffice to say, I will be gracing you with an actual review of this lovely book.  Ahem.  Let’s get crackalackin (I feel like there should be a hyphen or two in there…somewhere).

 

This book toyed with my emotions.  In the beginning, I wasn’t completely sold.  I thought, oh great, another red-head chick (I am a red-head, though I don’t know if that gives me any grounds either) who kills with her touch……Juliette from Shatter Me?  I was wrong.  Twylla, the main character, is Daunen Embodied, so basically a goddess walking around in a mortal body….at least that’s what she is led to believe.  She is also used at the castle as the executioner.  She touches the prisoners, they crumple to the floor without a pulse, and the guards escort Twylla back to her “tower” (it’s definitely a prison) until they need her to kill someone else.  Twylla is also engaged to the Crown Prince, Merek.  He comes back to the castle after a long journey and Twylla and Merek have that epiphany where they’re both like, hey, you grew up.

 

Then Twylla’s guard, Dorin, gets sick.  Usher in the replacement, who also happens to be a foreigner called Lief.  Now at first, you’re thinking, what is this happy little puppy doing holding a sharp blade?  But then you got to know Lief.  And you got to like Lief.  And Twylla got to like Lief.  And a ship was sailed.

 

But then the “fire-breathing ***** queen” (credit to SJM), which not only applies to Celaena, but Merek’s mom, too.  She’s crazy manipulative and you just wanna slice and dice her with every word she says.

 

And then the ending rips you open, takes your heart, laughs uproariously at it, and carelessly throws it into a nearby, freshly-dug grave.

 

I have yet to experience The Sleeping Prince.  But I’m ready…who am I kidding, my heart’s stuttering just thinking about it.

– Natalie