Monday, 17 June 2019

Storm and Fury Spoiler Free Review


Storm and Fury (The Harbinger, #1)Storm and Fury by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Synopsis:

Eighteen-year-old Trinity Marrow may be going blind, but she can see and communicate with ghosts and spirits. Her unique gift is part of a secret so dangerous that she’s been in hiding for years in an isolated compound fiercely guarded by Wardens—gargoyle shape-shifters who protect humankind from demons. If the demons discover the truth about Trinity, they’ll devour her, flesh and bone, to enhance their own powers.


When Wardens from another clan arrive with disturbing reports that something out there is killing both demons and Wardens, Trinity’s safe world implodes. Not the least because one of the outsiders is the most annoying and fascinating person she’s ever met. Zayne has secrets of his own that will upend her world yet again—but working together becomes imperative once demons breach the compound and Trinity’s secret comes to light. To save her family and maybe the world, she’ll have to put her trust in Zayne. But all bets are off as a supernatural war is unleashed…

My Thoughts:

I received an ARC for an honest review

I gave this book 4 stars. I was not overwhelmed by this book. I liked this book, it was definitely not a three-star book, but it wasn’t blowing my socks off. I didn’t feel like there was anything really new in this book, but I did enjoy it. I read most of it in one day.

Don’t get me wrong, I love Jennifer L Armentrout’s books, but I feel like she has gotten into a bit of a rut when it comes to her protagonists. They are often characters that I do feel like I relate to a lot, but i feel like she writes so many books that maybe she should take a chance and mix things up a bit. I really felt that way especially while I was reading this book.

As you may know, this book is a spin-off of another popular Jennifer Armentrout series, The Dark Elements. It follows a new character, Trinity, and a character that we met in the original series, Zayne.

Trinity seems to be human by everyone around her, except for the few people that know what she really is. Trinity was a relatable character. I think the fact that she is slowly losing her sight is an interesting new challenge for the author. A lot of authors rely so heavily on what characters are seeing that when you take away that variable it becomes so much harder to world build.

Zayne… I really liked Zayne in the past series. I don’t think I really wanted to read a series about him. Maybe if he had gotten a stand-alone I would have been a lot more excited than I was for this book. I mean, I like him, I’m just not over the moon about him. Right now if I had to rank Jennifer L. Armentrout’s Spinoff series’ it would be Origin, Titan, and then The Harbinger.

Overall, If you really enjoy the authors works or even just read and loved the Dark Elements series, then I would suggest giving this book a read.

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Tuesday, 4 June 2019

May Wrap Up


I read a lot and I watched a lot of things. It was a very eventful month in terms of reading. I decided to do the NABC 2019 reading challenge and I didn't think it would go as well as it has. I've gotten things down to 6 books a month in order to complete the Insane Level challenge and I'm really excited about this. I have a lot of New Adult books to talk about with you guys today.

1. Best I've Ever Had



I gave this book 3 stars. I have just not been impressed by this series by Abbi Glines. I thought I was going to love it because I loved their parents, but honestly, thing's are not going well. I'll probably keep reading them, but I have yet to read one I've truly enjoyed.

2. A Bite at the Cherry



I gave this book 4 stars. I got to read an ARC of this and I can tell that it is a great introduction to a series that is going to be really fun. This first book is very much beginning of the story. We haven't gotten to the juicy parts yet but you can tell that will be happening in the next book. You know, I really love YA vampire novels, I feel like now that it's 2019 people aren't that interested in vampire novels anymore. I think I might be stuck in 2012. I'm living for it.

3. Prophesy



I gave this book 4 stars. It took me over a year to read this because I kept going back to the beginning and starting it over again and then stopping at pretty much the same place each time.

4. A Pack of Vows and Tears



I gave this book 4 stars. I keep forgetting to write reviews for all these ARCs I've been reading. I legit thought I had already written this review and I check Goodreads and it turns out I did not. So I'm not going to get too much into this one because I do plan on posting a full review for that. So look out for it.

5. The Moth and the Flame



I gave this book 4.25 stars. The beginning of this book was a little slow, it didn't necessarily feel like it was dragging, but I did expect to get into the action a lot faster than we did thus the loss of .75 stars. Otherwise, this was a great sequel.

6. Royally Screwed



I gave this book 4 stars. I've read Emma Chase books in the past (*cough cough* Tangled) but I wasn't really feeling them. I feel like this book really made me appreciate her writing style so much more. I read Tangled back in the day and it makes me want to go back and read it again and hopefully enjoy it more than I did back then.

7. Royally Matched



I gave this book 4 stars. I was worried about this book having second book syndrome, alas it was just as good as the first book. The characters were just as funny, the situations were so outrageous, and the romance was to die for.

8. Fixing Us



I gave this book 4 stars. This story was short and sweet. It was a very mellow story without too much drama and characters that you can't help but relate to and feel a bond with. 

9. Without Merit



I gave this book 5 stars. I absolutley adore Colleen Hoover's stories, but I haven't personally connected to one of this level since I read hopeless about six years ago. I know a lot of people didn't like this one, but I have to say that this one really did it for me. I loved this to the point where I actually went out and bought a physical copy, which is also what I did with Hopeless.

10. Royally Yours



I gave this book 4 stars. I cried during this book. I legit couldn't control myself. I was not expecting to cry and that's what made it so much worse. It's better to be prepared. This was a very much enjoyed prequel to the Royally series by Emma Chase.

11. Soul In Darkness



I gave this book 4 stars. Ever since I first read the story of Cupid and Psyche I was incredibly intrigued by it. I was so excited to see someone finally write a retelling of it, and one that is so spot on. Maybe there are others out there, but this is the only one that I've ever heard of/read. Would highly recommend if you are into Greek and Roman mythology.

12. Storm and Fury



I gave this book 4 stars. I was a little disappointed by this book. I don't know, I wasn't really that invested in the characters themselves. I feel like Jennifer L. Armentrout has gotten into a bit of a rut where she writes a lot of similar characters. I'm absolutley adoring her Origin series, that one is certainly revving my engine. However, I can't really say the same for this book.

13. I Dare You



I gave this book 4 stars. I tried to read this book back in I think February/March, but I couldn't seem to get into, thus starting a bit of a reading slump. I finally got back to it and really enjoyed reading it. If you are into those edgier, darker NA/YA romances then this one would probably be a good read for you.

14. Darkness of Light



I gave this book 3 stars. I can sense a love triangle about to sprout and I am not here for it. I mean I'll give it some leeway because it was written amidst the love triangle craze.

15. A Different Blue



I gave this book 4.25 stars. This was a very harrowing story. There are so many heavy topics that this book covers and in my opinion, it's done respectfully. 

16. Rewrite the Stars



I gave this book 4 stars. I keep hearing such amazing things about Charleigh Rose books. I tried to read another of her books, but that was amidst a book slump so I ended up stopping and this one was pretty good, not my favorite though. I'm hoping that I will eventually feel about her books the way many others do. fingers crossed.


17. Instant Family



I gave this movie 4 stars. I really didn't ever plan on watching this movie because it really did seem very "white savior" esque. It actually wasn't as bad as I thought. They actually address that in the movie questioning their situation and hilariously comparing their situation to Avatar. 

18. At the Heart of Gold



 I gave this movie 5 stars. This is the documentary about the Larry Nassar scandal from a few years back and how he sexually assaulted hundreds of girls in his care. It was absolutely devastating watching this. I watched it twice and I cried both times. Hearing the testimonies of these girls and seeing how they were affected by this was truly heartwrenching.

19. Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again



I gave this movie 4 stars. I watched this right after At the Heart of Gold. It was lighthearted and fun and was the perfect spirit lifter after having watched something so sad.

20. Booksmart



I gave this movie 5 stars. This movie was so fun. I felt this on a spiritual level. This was Olivia Wilde's directorial debut and I have to say she fucking nailed it. It's hilarious and smart. However, if you hate seeing people vomit, even if it's fake then you should be warned that there is some vomiting in this movie.

21. How to Train Your Dragon: Hidden World



I gave this movie 4.5 stars. I cried. Enough said.

22. Game of Thrones season 8




I gave this Season 3 stars. This was disappointing. There was only one character arc that I actually really enjoyed. If you know, you know. The rest of the season was just trash. 

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Thursday, 23 May 2019

The Moth and the Flame Blog Tour Excerpt and Review!

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The Moth and the Flame by B.B. Reid
Release Date: May 20, 2019

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The Moth and the Flame, the second romantic standalone in the When Rivals Play series by B.B. Reid.

THE FLAME

Here lies Louchana Valentine. She was a homeless, orphaned virgin.
I never cared what my gravestone would say until I landed in deep with a powerful gangster. Lucky for me, my best friend happens to be ruthless too. I should feel guilty that he’s forced to turn on the man who’s been a father to him. Except I’ve always known that Wren’s soul wasn’t as black as he claimed.
He was good.
He was beautiful.
He was mine.
He just didn’t know it yet.
And with Wren keeping me safe, I’ve got time left to rewrite the end of my story. But if he has his way, virgin is already carved in stone.

THE MOTH

I’ve never known anyone as alluring as Lou. Or as frustrating. Since the night she saved my life and stole my wallet for her troubles, I couldn’t stay away.
She became my onus.
My light.
My…anyway.
With nowhere to run, I’m forced to trust someone I never expected. At least with Lou safe in Blackwood Keep—far away from me—I’ll die with my conscience intact. Because she no longer looks at me with friendship in her eyes. Those iridescent blues shine with a different need entirely, and I’ve never been able to deny her.

It is strongly advised that you read The Peer and the Puppet before diving into The Moth and the Flame. Content suitable for ages 18+.

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Download your copy today or Read FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

Paperback Worldwide https://geni.us/mothflamePB
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Read The Peer and the Puppet today!

Only 99 cents for a limited time. Available FREE with Kindle Unlimited.
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Review:


I gave this book 4.25 stars. While I adored this book, I definitely have enjoyed a lot of B. B. Reid’s other books more. This was a book that I adored, but not one that I loved so much that I had to go back and reread it ten times in a row. Nevertheless, it is a B. B. Reid book which much like pizza, even when it’s bad it’s still pretty fricken good. 

This book was surprisingly uneventful. At least the first half was. I felt like the first half of the book was more establishing the characters and their backstories but not much plot action really happened until part two. 

This book was the friends to lovers trope done right. I have read some atrocious books with that trope and I’m here to say that you can do it wrong. As it is one of my favorite tropes I have to applaud when it is done right. The romance was slow burning and sexy, this entire book was just building up the anticipation of these two characters finally getting it together without ruining their relationship.

We got a brief glimpse into the dynamic between Wren and Lou in the first book in this series, just enough to get us hooked. Lou is a street kid. She picks pockets and knows her way around back alleyways. she also has one helluva sharp tongue that she can use to destroy her enemies. And her friends. Or both. Just for fun. As a main character, I have to give her all of the stars. I love main characters that have a lot of personality who are loud and sneaky and know what they want. If you enjoy that type of protagonist this would probably be a good book choice for you.

Now Wren. Wren is very complicated. You don’t really know too much about him until pretty much the end of the book when his secrets start to reveal themselves. He doesn’t even know some of the secrets in his own life and honestly, that’s funny to me in an ironic way. He is conflicted about his relationship with Lou throughout the book and it can get so incredibly sexy at times. I’m legit glad it isn’t too hot out while I was reading this because I would have melted. 


Overall, .75 taken off of the star rating system because I found that the beginning of the novel was a bit slow. The rest of the book earned the other 4.25 with a masterful twisting and turning plot and romance.

Excerpt:

Lou didn’t awaken when I climbed through her window, weary and angry, late the following night. My prediction had come true. I’d gone back to Blackwood Keep, and against my better judgment, I confronted Danny Boy.  

Or rather Ever McNamara. 

Heir to a multibillion-dollar hotel empire. 

And the only son of Thomas McNamara.

Surprisingly, what bothered me most wasn’t Danny Boy or his double life. Something about his father had seemed familiar to me. As if I’d known him in another lifetime. 

I shook my head as I toed off the black and white striped Adidas Lou had picked out, swearing the sneakers almost made me look normal. I snorted, and with a moan, she shifted in her sleep causing the sheet covering her lower half to slip dangerously low. Before I could rethink it, I ran my fingers over the curve of her naked hip now bare to me. Thoughts of Ever McNamara fled to the recesses of my mind as I marveled at the smoothness of her skin. 

It was a surprising contrast to her hardened demeanor, but I always knew it was a front. She was a pillar, no doubt standing tall and appearing strong, but one day, her cracked foundation would crumble, and I’d make damn sure I was around to pick up the pieces. 

Even if she didn’t want me to be. 

There were times when she didn’t appreciate just how seriously I took my role as her best friend. She claimed I acted like her father rather than her friend. If that was what she called making sure no one ever hurt her again, then sure—I’d daddy the fuck out of her. 

Another moan slipped from her lips when my fingers reach the edge of her frilly blue panties, but this time, it was the sound of my name on her lips. For a second, I panicked, thinking she’d caught me perving on her, but when her even breaths continued, I realized she was still very much out of it, and a smile slowly formed as my fingers dipped lower. 

“What are you dreaming right now, Lou?”

Her breath seemed to catch as I continued to toy with the seam of her panties. 

“Are you dreaming of me?”

She sighed in response. 

“You are, aren’t you?”

A low whine escaped her.

“I know what you’re after, little Valentine. I’ve known all along.” We both seemed to stop breathing when my fingers dipped beneath her panties and I felt her smooth skin. “How can you be sure you can handle me when I haven’t even kissed you yet?” I swallowed, cursing myself but then decided to allow myself honesty. At least this once. 

She was writhing now, attempting to relieve the ache I knew was building, but we both knew it was useless. Nothing short of getting me inside her would ever do. 

“You want to come.” It wasn’t a question but a statement of fact. “But you don’t get to come. You’ve been bad, Lou. This is how I’ll punish you.” I freed my fingers from her panties and stepped back. As if I’d snapped my fingers, breaking her from my spell, she jackknifed from the bed, breathing hard and looking around in confusion. When her gaze pierced the dark and found me, I remain perfectly still, my hands already in my pockets, pretending my fingers weren’t burning with the memory of her soft skin.

“Wren?”

My eyebrow rose. “You expecting someone else?”

Connect with B.B. Reid:

Website www.bbreid.com


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Wednesday, 22 May 2019

Without Merit Review


Without Merit
Without Merit 
by Colleen Hoover




Mild Spoilers

Synopsis:


Not every mistake deserves a consequence. Sometimes the only thing it deserves is forgiveness.

The Voss family is anything but normal. They live in a repurposed church, newly baptized Dollar Voss. The once cancer-stricken mother lives in the basement, the father is married to the mother’s former nurse, the little half-brother isn’t allowed to do or eat anything fun, and the eldest siblings are irritatingly perfect. Then, there’s Merit.

Merit Voss collects trophies she hasn’t earned and secrets her family forces her to keep. While browsing the local antiques shop for her next trophy, she finds Sagan. His wit and unapologetic idealism disarm and spark renewed life into her—until she discovers that he’s completely unavailable. Merit retreats deeper into herself, watching her family from the sidelines when she learns a secret that no trophy in the world can fix.


Fed up with the lies, Merit decides to shatter the happy family illusion that she’s never been a part of before leaving them behind for good. When her escape plan fails, Merit is forced to deal with the staggering consequences of telling the truth and losing the one boy she loves.

My Thoughts:


I gave this book 5 stars. I have never been disappointed by a Colleen Hoover book. I feel like she always writes exactly what I need to read. I felt like this book brought me back to the Hopeless days. 

This is the book I needed so bad last year when I was graduating. I was having a bit of a crisis and I felt a lot of what Merit was feeling. I found that this book was the most relatable of Colleen Hoover's novels, for me at least. Not really the family drama, but everything else. Anyway, this book made me realize that I probably am depressed and I just didn’t realize it until now. Don’t you just love it when books do that?

I actually find it kind of surprising that the score for this on Goodreads is as low as it is. I went through this book just feeling as though my own feelings were being validated. I realize not everyone has the same experiences, but for me personally, this one was pretty on the nose. Anyway, I found that I connected with this book in a way that I haven’t connected to another book since I read the Outsiders six years ago.

Honestly, I can just picture this being an indie “coming of age” movie. You know, there is a little bit of romance, a little bit of a quarter-life crisis, a little bit of family drama. I can see the movie in my mind's eye. It might be a little boring depending on how the director would playmthings, and it would probably get Oscar nominations and such and all those indie critics will call it a piece of art. I think it would be a really pretentious movie, but it was a really good book. Don’t let pretentious movie vibes scare you away from reading this book.

Throughout the novel, I kept thinking “Merit Badge” simply because her name is Merit and she likes to collect trophies. I realize that those things really aren’t that similar but I thought it was kind of fun. 

I liked how Sagan talked about his and his families experience with the Syrian Refugee Crisis. It wasn’t just some random thing that was happening in the world, it was actually something that affected him and gave substance to his character arc. Like Merit, I didn’t really know much about the Syrian Refugee Crisis other than the name. It was probably because I was too young to really know that it was happening when it was happening. I still don’t know a lot about it, but I loved how it gave a break down of what happened. As a reader, I feel like I’m just a little bit more informed about what is happening in the world. I kind of feel guilty that I didn’t already. 

This book didn’t make me cry like the last two books I read by this author, but it did make me feel a lot of things. Some of them not so great, but at the same time sort of freeing. Let’s just leave it at I think about this book a lot.


I would highly recommend this book for anyone who is nearing high school graduation, people that don’t really know what they want to do with their lives, for people that are suffering from depression or think they might be. I think this was a book that was amazing for self-reflection. 


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Monday, 20 May 2019

Fixing Us Blog Tour Excerpt + Review

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Fixing Us, an all-new romantic standalone from Miranda Elaine is available now!

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Gabriel Starr is the love of my life, even if he breaks my heart time and time again.
Like a fool, I keep going back, so I’ve made a promise to myself—one final night and then I’m done.
One night of passion.
No pressure. Most importantly, no future.
One month later, a positive pregnancy test tells me different.
Our only option is to raise this baby as friends, but how can we make it work when we can’t even keep our hands off each other?
We finally have the chance to be the family we never imagined we could be.
But first we need to focus on Fixing Us.

Fixing Us - AN



Download your copy today or read FREE in Kindle Unlimited!
Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/FixingUs
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Review:

I gave this book 4 stars. This was such a cute heartfelt romance. I haven’t read any of the other books in this series. 

Honestly, I didn’t even realize it was part of a series until halfway through the book. I think it stands well on its own, it can be read as a standalone if you don’t want to read the first two books. I was never lost when reading the book, however, I do think that it might enhance the reading experience if you read the other two books first because those characters do make several appearances in this book.

Leigh and Game were so heartfelt. They were an on again off again couple for twelve years and honestly I don’t think any part of me thought that they weren’t going to work things out. Being only over 200 pages, the story was short but sweet. And the characters themselves made for an interesting dynamic.

Leigh was such a funny character. I love having protagonists with bucketloads of personality and I really felt that Leah had that. I loved how her humour was flawlessly incorporated in order to relieve some of the heaviness of the rest of the story.

I also liked that neither of them had overly conventional career choices. I feel like there is such a need now for everyone to go to college or university right out the gate that if you do anything other than that, people will judge you. Both of them found their callings without having to spend any more time going to school because sometimes school just isn’t the right move for people. 

Overall, if you are looking for an NA novel to read that isn’t too heavy but isn’t a pocket full of sunshine then this would be a good read for you.

Excerpt:

Finally, after what feels like a millennium, the door opens and Dr. Mallard enters, smiling. He’s an older man who is always overly happy. I like him, even if I find his cheerfulness somewhat off-putting at this exact second.

“Mrs. Simms, how exciting to have you here today. This must be your husband.” He walks over to Gabe, who stands, hand extended.

“Sorry, no,” I chime in. “Definitely not my husband.”

“My fault,” he apologizes. “Your boyfriend. This is a new age. Lots of people in lifelong relationships nowadays without marriage.”

            Awkward.

            “Nope,” I say, popping my P with a bit more attitude than intended. “We aren’t together.” I look over at Gabe, who’s holding his laughter in and I silently yell Help me!

            “Just got her knocked up,” Gabe finally speaks. “Classic fairy tale story of ex-sex turning into a baby. Turns out those silly condoms serve a purpose and really shouldn’t be skipped. Who knew?”

            “Seriously!” I yell while shooting him daggers with my eyes. All he does to respond is shrug his shoulders and give me an evil grin.

            “Okay, Miss Simms, if you can lie back and put your feet up we can check on this little miracle,” Dr. Mallard finally says as the nurse pulls the stirrups out and helps me assume the position.

            Even if you don’t want your ex-boyfriend back you still always want them to think of you as the sexy one who got away, not the girl nude and exposed with her legs in the air while a doctor probes her. Great, fucking great.

            “Sure.” I lie back and my head jerks to Gabe. “But you stay north of the equator.”

            “Not a problem, Leigh.” He smiles at me. “But it ain’t nothing I haven’t seen before.”

            “Well, it’s definitely something you’re never seeing again,” I snap back at him, causing the nurse to let a small chuckle escape.

            I try to act cool by the fact that the doctor seems to think sticking a huge wand up me is perfectly normal.

            Thump thump. Thump thump.

            Our bickering immediately stops. The room is dark and the monitor next to me is lit up.

            “Is that—” Gabe starts.

            “That’s your baby’s heartbeat,” the doctor interrupts. “And if you look over here, you see that small little bean shape in the middle there.” He points to the picture on the ultrasound machine. “That’s your baby. It’s currently approximately the size of a raspberry.”

            “Wow,” Gabe and I both somehow say at the same time.

            We finish the appointment with a plethora of information. Gabe is quiet and the silliness that existed in the examination room is gone. We check out and walk side by side. Neither of us bringing up everything we need to discuss.

            Does him showing up mean he wants to be involved? Does he assume we will get back together? Can we even do this together? Do I want to?

            All the questions are running rampant in my head and instead of saying a single one of them I simply say, “I’ll let you know when I have another appointment.”

            “Thanks.” He holds the door to the building open, letting me walk outside, him close on my heels. “I want to be here for you and our child as best as I can.”

            I nod, but my mind is still back in that office with that beautiful baby. My baby.

            “We ought to talk, Leigh.”

            “You’re right. But today I got to hear my—our, baby’s heartbeat for the first time. Let’s not ruin it, okay?” We’re standing in the middle of the parking lot, neither of us moving to our respective vehicles.


            “Okay, but soon.”

About Miranda

Miranda is a loving wife and barely surviving mother of three occasionally good kids. Her hobbies include lying to herself about the calories in donuts and banana pudding, as well as running out of excuses when procrastinating. She's been an avid reader since she was a young girl. Whether she's by the pool, curled up in bed, or hiding in the closet, as long as she has a book in her hands she’s happy.


MirandaElaine


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