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Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Review: Fire Falling (Air Awakens #2) by Elise Kova



Title: Fire Falling
Series: Air Awakens #2
Author: Elise Kova
Publisher: Silver Wing Press
Publication Date: November 19, 2015
Pages: 378
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance
Source: Ebook
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble


SYNOPSIS
Soldier… Sorcerer… Savior… Who is Vhalla Yarl?

Vhalla Yarl marches to war as property of the Solaris Empire. The Emperor counts on her to bring victory, the Senate counts on her death, and the only thing Vhalla can count on is the fight of her life. As she grapples with the ghosts of her past, new challenges in the present threaten to shatter the remnants of her fragile sanity. Will she maintain her humanity? Or will she truly become the Empire’s monster?

MY REVIEW
OH. MY. GOD. OMG. The feels! OMG. So many feels! I feel like I am crumbling into pieces. There is just so much going on in my head and my heart right now that I don't quite know how to proceed. Let's see now...

Elise Kova wields magic not just in the pages of this story, but with mere words. She has such a talent for creating a story that is held so close to my heart. 

The characters are growing so much. I love how close Vhalla is becoming with her friends. It is just so touching. I am happy for her and it gives me so much hope for her. I love the new friendships that she forges as well. Vhalla and Aldrick's relationship evolves so much. There is so much tension, and it's the good kind. They go through so much and find themselves growing together and apart. I loved Baldair much more in this book. I liked his character in the last book, but now that like has turned to love. I adore him. I can't wait to see what the series has in store for all of these characters. 

The plot thickens in this follow-up. With everyone marching off to the warfront, there is so much going on. There is a lot of personal growth for the characters, but it feels like the story grows as well. Between both there is never a dull moment. We learn more about the war going on, and the political intrigue is escalating. I am just foaming at the mouth with anticipation for what comes next in this series!

The pacing is comparable to the first book. It may seem faster since you already know the characters, but in reality it is still evenly paced. 

The romance seemed to take up a large portion of the book. The story definitely does not lack because of this. The story goes right along with no disruption. The romance grows around the story. It's perfect, actually. I loved it!

The ending of this book will rip your heart out and flay your soul. I'm not joking. It's that intense. You will feel, you will cry, and you will fall to the floor begging to the gods for mercy. It's that kind of ending. It will change you.

Please do yourself a favor and read this series. Just do it. There is so much to love about this series. The engaging plot, the complex fantasy elements, and a budding romance that will fill your heart up to overflowing. This series has become one of my favorites, and I have no doubt that it will be one of yours as well!



ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Elise Kova has always had a profound love of fantastical worlds. Somehow, she managed to focus on the real world long enough to graduate with a Master's in Business Administration before crawling back under her favorite writing blanket to conceptualize her next magic system. She currently lives in St. Petersburg, Florida, and when she is not writing can be found playing video games, watching anime, or talking with readers on social media. She is the author of the USA Today Bestselling Air Awakens Series as well as the upcoming Loom Saga (Keymaster, 2017).

Waiting on Wednesday: Stalking Jack the Ripper (Untitled Trilogy #1) by Kerri Maniscalco

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're super jazzed about.


Title: Stalking Jack the Ripper
Series: Untitled Trilogy #1
Author: Kerri Maniscalco
Publisher: Jimmy Patterson
Publication Date: September 20, 2016
Pages: 336
Genres: Young Adult, Historical Fiction, Mystery

Synopsis

Seventeen-year-old Audrey Rose Wadsworth was born a lord's daughter, with a life of wealth and privilege stretched out before her. But between the social teas and silk dress fittings, she leads a forbidden secret life.

Against her stern father's wishes and society's expectations, Audrey often slips away to her uncle's laboratory to study the gruesome practice of forensic medicine. When her work on a string of savagely killed corpses drags Audrey into the investigation of a serial murderer, her search for answers brings her close to her own sheltered world.

My Thoughts

Everything about this book makes me giddy in all the right ways! I have always been fascinated by the history of Jack the Ripper, and of this time in history in general. And look at that cover! OMG, yes!! This is one book that is at the top of my anticipated books of 2016 list!

Do you enjoy historical fiction? What is a book that you are patiently waiting on? Feel free to leave the link to your Waiting on Wednesday post!

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Release Day Book Blitz: Joshua and the Arrow Realm (Lightning Road #2) by Donna Galanti

Joshua2RDC
 
Welcome to the Release Day Celebration for
Joshua and the Arrow Realm
(Lightning Road #2) 
by Donna Galanti
presented by Tantrum Books/Month9Books!
Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!
 
Happy Book Birthday, Donna!
 
Joshua2 Cover
 
Joshua never thought he'd return to the world of Nostos so soon. But, when King Apollo needs his help in the Arrow Realm, Joshua's will and powers will be tested in order to save him.
With his loyalties divided between our world and theirs, Joshua wonders whether he alone can restore magic to the twelve powerless Olympian heirs, or whether he is being tricked into making the one mistake that might cost them all.
JOSHUA AND THE ARROW REALM is the exciting follow up to JOSHUA THE LIGHTNING ROAD which the Midwest Book Review called, "a heart-pounding thrill ride."

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Joshua and the Arrow Realm (Lightning Road #2)
by Donna Galanti
Publication Date: August 30, 2016
Publisher: Tantrum Books
Chapters | Amazon | B&N | TBD   

 
OTHER BOOKS IN THE SERIES:
 

Stay away from the window, don’t go outside when it’s storming and whatever you do, do not touch the orb.
Twelve-year-old Joshua Cooper’s grandpa has always warned him about the dangers of lightning. But Joshua never put much stock in his grandpa’s rumblings as anything more than the ravings of an old man with a vast imagination. Then one night, when Joshua and his best friend are home alone during a frightful storm, Joshua learns his grandpa was right. A bolt of lightning strikes his house and whisks away his best friend—possibly forever.
To get him back, Joshua must travel the Lightning Road to a dark place that steals children for energy. But getting back home and saving his friend won’t be easy, as Joshua must face the terrifying Child Collector and fend off ferocious and unnatural beasts intent on destroying him.
In this world, Joshua possesses powers he never knew he had, and soon, Joshua’s mission becomes more than a search for his friend. He means to send all the stolen children home—and doing so becomes the battle of his life.

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About-the-Author2

Donna is the author of the Joshua and the Lightning Road series and the Element Trilogy. She is a contributing editor to International Thriller Writers the Big Thrill magazine and blogs at www.project-middle-grade-mayhem.blogs..., a cooperative of published middle grade authors. Visit her at www.donnagalanti.com and www.ElementTrilogy.com. Donna wanted to be a writer ever since she wrote a murder mystery screenplay at seven and acted it out with the neighborhood kids. She attended an English school housed in a magical castle, where her wild imagination was held back only by her itchy uniform (bowler hat and tie included!). There she fell in love with the worlds of C.S. Lewis and Roald Dahl, and wrote her first fantasy about Dodo birds, wizards, and a flying ship (and has been writing fantasy ever since). She’s lived in other exotic locations, including her family-owned campground in New Hampshire and in Hawaii where she served as a U.S. Navy photographer. She now lives with her family and two crazy cats in an old farmhouse and dreams of returning one day to a castle.
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Complete the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win!
 

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Top Ten Tuesday: Back to School Freebie - Classics & Classic Retellings


Top Ten Tuesday is a meme created by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week there is a different question for bloggers to ponder over. 

This week's topic is "Back to School Freebie - Anything Back to School Related". I decided to showcase some of my favorite classics, as well as one classic retelling of each. Let's have a look!



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Have you read any of the titles listed above? What are some of your favorite classics or retellings? Feel free to leave the link to your Top Ten Tuesday post!

Monday, August 29, 2016

Review: Air Awakens (Air Awakens #1) by Elise Kova


Title: Air Awakens
Series: Air Awakens #1
Author: Elise Kova
Publisher: Silver Wing Press
Publication Date: August 27, 2015
Pages: 377
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
Source: Ebook
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble


SYNOPSIS
A library apprentice, a sorcerer prince, and an unbreakable magic bond...

The Solaris Empire is one conquest away from uniting the continent, and the rare elemental magic sleeping in seventeen-year-old library apprentice Vhalla Yarl could shift the tides of war.

Vhalla has always been taught to fear the Tower of Sorcerers, a mysterious magic society, and has been happy in her quiet world of books. But after she unknowingly saves the life of one of the most powerful sorcerers of them all—the Crown Prince Aldrik—she finds herself enticed into his world. Now she must decide her future: Embrace her sorcery and leave the life she’s known, or eradicate her magic and remain as she’s always been. And with powerful forces lurking in the shadows, Vhalla’s indecision could cost her more than she ever imagined.

MY REVIEW
I have been hearing so many great things about this series. I have been wanting to read it since last fall, and I finally got my chance! I am just kicking myself for not reading it sooner. I was entranced by this book from the very first page. There is so much to love about this book. And look at the cover? Does it not give you goosebumps?

The characters were my favorite thing about this book. Vhalla is such a great character. She seems so vulnerable at first, just coming into her own. It is a great journey watching her figure things out. I like how she seems so ordinary at the beginning of the book. Not ugly by any means, but also not drop dead gorgeous. At least, not in a supermodel kind of way. I adored Aldrick! He was so frustrating at times, but I couldn't get enough of him. You can tell that he has some hidden torment that he is dealing with. He is strong and very sure of himself. Most of all I loved the way that Vhalla and Aldrick come together in the book. I liked that the romance was slow and steady, and not hot and heavy. The timing was just right.

I really loved the plot. There are so many great fantasy themes in this- magic, princes, politics, a kingdom at war...it's such a fascinating world. I enjoyed the world building. This world has so many elements to it. It was easy to picture the kingdom and the way of life. The flow of the story was perfect. The world was introduced to the reader without dragging on.

There are many tropes in this book that are typical of many other young adult books. This doesn't take anything away from the story though. The author spins such a fantastic tale.

I can't recommend this book enough! It is one of my favorite books this year. If you loved the Grisha trilogy then I think you would be thrilled by this series! Give it a try. I promise that you will not be disappointed that you did!


ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Elise Kova has always had a profound love of fantastical worlds. Somehow, she managed to focus on the real world long enough to graduate with a Master's in Business Administration before crawling back under her favorite writing blanket to conceptualize her next magic system. She currently lives in St. Petersburg, Florida, and when she is not writing can be found playing video games, watching anime, or talking with readers on social media. She is the author of the USA Today Bestselling Air Awakens Series as well as the upcoming Loom Saga (Keymaster, 2017).

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Review: And I Darken (The Conquerors Saga #1) by Kiersten White


Title: And I Darken
Series: The Conquerors Saga #1
Author: Kiersten White
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Publication Date: June 28, 2016
Pages: 496
Genres: Young Adult, Historical Fiction, Fantasy, Retellings, Re-imaginings, Romance
Source: ARC from publisher
Rating: 

SYNOPSIS
NO ONE EXPECTS A PRINCESS TO BE BRUTAL.

And Lada Dragwlya likes it that way. Ever since she and her gentle younger brother, Radu, were wrenched from their homeland of Wallachia and abandoned by their father to be raised in the Ottoman courts, Lada has known that being ruthless is the key to survival. She and Radu are doomed to act as pawns in a vicious game, an unseen sword hovering over their every move. For the lineage that makes them special also makes them targets.

Lada despises the Ottomans and bides her time, planning her vengeance for the day when she can return to Wallachia and claim her birthright. Radu longs only for a place where he feels safe. And when they meet Mehmed, the defiant and lonely son of the sultan, who’s expected to rule a nation, Radu feels that he’s made a true friend—and Lada wonders if she’s finally found someone worthy of her passion.

But Mehmed is heir to the very empire that Lada has sworn to fight against—and that Radu now considers home. Together, Lada, Radu, and Mehmed form a toxic triangle that strains the bonds of love and loyalty to the breaking point.

MY REVIEW
I received this book for free from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

“Though she be but little, she is fierce!” ? William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night's Dream

This quote pretty much sums up Lada, the main character in the book. Not only is Lada fierce, but this book is fierce! It is hard to put into words the way this book affected me. I was drawn into this book from the very first paragraph. "Vlad Dracul's heavy brow descended like a storm when the doctor informed him that his wife had given birth to a girl. He had not thought his seed weak enough to produce a girl." Those two sentences just gripped me, and did not let go until I finished the last page. Even then, this book had me on an intense book hangover.

The first thing that you need to know about And I Darken is that it is a fantasy historical retelling. Knowing this and going into the book, it turned out to be nothing like what I was expecting. The thing that shocked me most was that it felt wholly like a historical fiction. This is not a bad thing, just unexpected.

The characters will take hold of you and lodge themselves in your heart. Truly. These characters are so beautifully developed. The beginning of the book follows Lada and her brother, Radu, from birth to children. We see so much of their lives during this time, and the backstory is very important to the rest of the story. There are many other important characters in the book. They each add a unique element to the story. Each has a different personality, and each brings their own conflicts, hopes, and struggles.

I loved the connection to the LGBT community. There is not one, not two, not three, but four gay characters represented in the book. And having them in a historical setting was even better! I loved having so much diversity in the story. Not only that, but there are characters of different cultures that are represented.

The plot of the story is very well put together. It has so many elements and they were all beautifully crafted to make this story what it is. I can't even imagine all the research the author had to do for this book. It has to be mind boggling. The historical accuracy, along with the original arc of this story makes this book really stand out.

This book really is one of my favorite debuts of 2016! It is unlike anything I've read before. I totally recommend picking this up. This is one of those books that you buy all of your friends for their birthdays and preach about from the rooftops. It will take over your life and you will love every moment of it!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
KIERSTEN WHITE is the New York Times bestselling author of the Paranormalcy trilogy; the dark thrillers Mind Games and Perfect Lies; The Chaos of Stars; and Illusions of Fate. She also coauthored In the Shadows with Jim Di Bartolo. She lives with her family near the ocean in San Diego, which, in spite of its perfection, spurs her to dream of faraway places and even further away times.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Waiting on Wednesday: Metaltown by Kristen Simmons

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're super jazzed about.


Title: Metaltown
Series: N/A
Author: Kristen Simmons
Publisher: Tor Teen
Publication Date: September 20, 2016
Pages: 384
Genres: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Dystopia, Steampunk

Synopsis

Metaltown, where factories rule, food is scarce, and hope is in short supply.

The rules of Metaltown are simple: Work hard, keep your head down, and watch your back. You look out for number one, and no one knows that better than Ty. She’s been surviving on the factory line as long as she can remember. But now Ty has Colin. She’s no longer alone; it’s the two of them against the world. That’s something even a town this brutal can’t take away from her. Until it does.

Lena’s future depends on her family’s factory, a beast that demands a ruthless master, and Lena is prepared to be as ruthless as it takes if it means finally proving herself to her father. But when a chance encounter with Colin, a dreamer despite his circumstances, exposes Lena to the consequences of her actions, she’ll risk everything to do what’s right.

In Lena, Ty sees an heiress with a chip on her shoulder. Colin sees something more. In a world of disease and war, tragedy and betrayal, allies and enemies, all three of them must learn that challenging what they thought was true can change all the rules.

An enthralling story of friendship and rebellion, Metaltown will have you believing in the power of hope.


My Thoughts

I am thoroughly excited for this release! I am such a sucker for dystopian style stories, especially when the main characters are facing some type of adversity. If there is a story that has rebellion, then I am totally in! Press back for Metaltown!!

What do you think of the synopsis for Metaltown? Are you a fan of dystopias? What is a book that you are patiently waiting on? Feel free to leave the link to your Waiting on Wednesday post!

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Cover Reveal: Shadow Fall (Shadow Fall #1) by Audrey Grey

Happy Cover Reveal day! Blaze Publishing has another amazing design to share with the world today. We're revealing the cover to SHADOW FALL by Audrey Grey. This YA sci-fi dystopian will definitely keep you on the edge of your seat as Maia is pitted against others in the ultimate game of survival. Join the Facebook Party tonight from 5-11pm EST, and mark your calendars for release day 11/22!


Title: Shadow Fall
Series: Shadow Fall #1
Author: Audrey Grey
Publisher: Blaze Publishing
Publication Date: November 22. 2016
Pages: 334
Genres: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Dystopian


SYNOPSIS:
The asteroid hurtling toward the earth will kill billions.

The Emperor and his Gold Court will be safe in their space station, watching from the stars. The Silvers will be protected underground. But the Bronzes must fight it out at the Shadow Trials for the few remaining spots left on the space station.

When an enigmatic benefactor hands Maia Graystone a spot in the Trials, she won’t just get a chance at salvation for her and her baby brother, Max: She gets to confront the mother who abandoned her in prison, the mad Emperor who murdered her father, and the Gold prince who once loved her. But it’s the dark bastard prince she’s partnered with that will make her question everything, including her own heart. With the asteroid racing closer every day, Maia must trust someone to survive. The question is who?

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Audrey Grey lives in the charming state of Oklahoma, with her husband, two little people, and four mischievous dogs. You can usually find her hiding out in her office from said little people and dogs, surrounded by books and sipping kombucha while dreaming up wondrous worlds for her characters to live in.



Do you have a submission you'd like to send us? We'd love to see it! You can find our submissions guidelines on our website.

Want to stay up to date on everything from Blaze Publishing? Sign up for our newsletter so you don't miss a thing! The first 100 subscribers get free Blaze bookmarks (UK, US, and Canada only) AND get added to our Loyal 100 group, which gives you access to exclusive news, teasers, prizes, and ARCs!


Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Books That Have Been On Your Shelf (or TBR) From Before You Started Blogging That You STILL Haven't Read Yet


Top Ten Tuesday is a meme created by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week there is a different question for bloggers to ponder over. 

This week's topic is "Top Ten Books That Have Been On Your Shelf (or TBR) From Before You Started Blogging That You STILL Haven't Read Yet". Okay, this Top Ten Tuesday post will be quite embarrassing. I honestly cannot believe that I STILL have yet to read these books. There really is no excuse. I mean, I DO have an extensive TBR list, but still...




Yes, I am aware that most people have read the majority of these books. Honestly, several of these books are ones that I started at one point or another and then just never finished. I just need to set a goal to read some of my older books. I just get into a new release frenzy when I hear of new books that I want, and since they are new and the hype is still everywhere I read those. I think that I may have to set a goal or do a challenge in 2017 to read at least one book or one series every month next year from my older TBR list. Is that a challenge that anyone else would participate in?

Have you read any of the titles listed above? What are some of the books that are oldest on your TBR list? Feel free to leave the link to your Top Ten Tuesday post!

Book Release Blitz & Giveaway: Into The Light (Into The Dark #2) by Caroline T. Patti

IntoTheLightRDC
Welcome to the Release Day Celebration for
Into The Light (Into The Dark #2)
by Caroline T. Patti
presented by Month9Books!
Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!
 
Happy Book Birthday, Caroline!
 
Into the Light Cover
 
Mercy’s family is back together and the threat of danger appears to have passed. But any relief she feels is short lived as she is ripped from her body and thrown in jail. Gage and Nathaniel’s plans to break Mercy out won’t exactly be easy. Stuffed full of a chemical binding agent, Mercy is trapped inside the body of a convict without the ability to breach and set herself free. Unfortunately for Mercy, being trapped in jail becomes the least of her problems when she meets her evil twin, Justice.
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Into the Light (Into the Dark #2)
by Caroline T. Patti
Publication Date: August 23, 2016
Publisher: Month9Books
 
OTHER BOOKS IN THE SERIES:
 
Into-the-Dark-cover
 
A girl’s sweet sixteen party is supposed to be among the most memorable events of her life. But on the night of hers, Mercy Clare wakes in the waiting room of a hospital with no memory of how she got there. To make matters worse, she’s wearing something she’d never be caught dead in: her best friend Lyla’s clothes.
Mercy’s nightmare is just beginning. The doctor arrives to tell her that it’s she who lies in the hospital bed waiting to die. A trip to the bathroom confirms Mercy’s fears, as Lyla’s face stares back at her and Lyla’s curvy figure pokes through her tight clothes.
But finding out what’s really going on won’t be easy. Because if Mercy wants her body back, it might just cost her Lyla’s life.
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Amazon | Kobo | B&N | Chapters | iBooks | BAM | TBD
 
About-the-Author2
Caroline-Patti-225x300
 
Caroline T Patti is the author of The World Spins Madly On and Too Late To Apologize. When she’s not writing, she’s a school librarian, mother of two, wife, avid reader and Green Bay Packer fan. You can chat with her on Twitter: carolinetpatti or find her on Facebook: Author Caroline T Patti.
 
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