Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Lady's Maid

Even though I was not overly impressed with Lady's Maid I was unable to put it down and stop reading it entirely.

Wilson was not just a maid to Mrs. Barrett but a friend and a confidant. I really liked Wilson at times and other times I did not care for her much. She had a hard life and clearly struggled to make the most of her life. Worshiping her mistress she showed no hesitation in leaving all she knew to make Mrs. Barrette into Mrs. Browning. As for growth I am not really sure Wilson's personality changed just her amount of life experience.

The writing was told in first person past tense and letters. I was not a fan of the writing style at all and I almost quit reading due to it a few times. It was nice to see how someone imagined Mr. and Mrs. Browning life especially through a servants eyes.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Dream Factory

Ever since I read the first few pages of Dream Factory at the bookstore I have been eager to read the whole story. Since I missed my chance of getting it from the bookstore I ordered it from the library.

Disney cast has gone out on strike in an attempt to get dental insurance so a bunch of high school students were brought in to play the role of the characters. Ella is lost and not sure what to do with herself so getting a job at Disneyworld is a good plan for the time being. Cast as Cinderella Ella struggles to embrace the magic of Disneyland.

Mark thought a job at Disneyworld would be the perfect way to escape his family and moving into a family business position. How wrong he was, cast as Dale he hates the costume and all the rules which he never wants to follow.

The premise for the story was awesome and super original but sadly my favorite part was the description on the back and the first chapter. The story just felt too cliche and flat to me. I was hoping for more character development and nothing was really resolved with Ella and her deep sadness.

Friday, June 2, 2017

The Dark Days Pact

The Dark Days Pact is the second book in the Lady Helen Series and I was so excited to enjoy every page of the story. I cannot wait for the third book to be released.

Helen has come a long way, having pressed the temper of her uncle too far she is now living in the house of an aide of a dark days club member along with her ever faithful maid Darby. Unsure of her situation Helen does he best to learn to accept her reclaimer powers and embrace her destiny of being the ultimate reclaimer.

While everything is told from Helen's point of view I feel like I have a strong bond with all the numerous side characters. They are well thought out, full of flaws, inner struggles, and feelings. Beautiful writing that makes me feel like I am sitting in the room watching the events unfold. The entire time I was kept guessing on what was occurring, who I could trust, and the overall decision of the dark days club to let Helen fight. After some thinking I do have my own ideas of what is going to happen and I eagerly await release of then next book, 2018 feels like it will take forever to get here.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Taming the Forest King

Taming the Forest King was nothing I expected it to be at all. Magic, mythical creatures, and battles was what I imagined.

Tevra is the Colonel of the light Calvary and earned her rank through her skills and sheer determination. Sent by the king to an outer forest province Tevra is horrified to see the Governor living like a royal while the common people starve. Taking matters into her own hands Tevra quickly seizes control and learns the way of the forest people.

Taming the Forest King was different but it is hard to say how it was different. I really liked Tevra, she had flaws but none of them were annoying. She was just blind to a lot of things that did not involve warfare. Even though I read and enjoyed the story I am hard a bit hard pressed to say what the story was actually about. Despite that I never felt like I was reading filler. It was a fun read and I would consider reading other works by Claudia J. Edwards.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

The Dark Days Club

The cover is what drew me to The Dark Days Club so I downloaded a sample. The sample was a couple chapters and I was immediately drawn into the story. I had to learn more about Lady Helen.

Helen is intriguing and enlightening character. I love her spirit, despite her overbearing uncle she is determined to make her own choices and remain free. Having reached the eighteen Helen is to presented to the Queen and announce her coming out in society. Fearful of her mother's shady reputation Helen is shocked when the queen gives her unsettling news about her late mother.

The writing was a pleasure to read. I loved every word and the intricate word building. All the characters had lovely personalities with flaws, development, and clear differences between them all. I cannot wait to start The Dark Days Pact.

Wings of Arian

Wings of Arian was not totally what I expected it to be. What drew me in was the lovely cover, minus the snake of course.

Kiora is the main character and I was a bit confused at the start as to what was going on with things. The story starts in the middle of Kiora's training so I was a bit lost as to what Kiora was doing at the start of the book. I did some growth with Kiora as she learned to embrace the magic in her and her job as The Solus. Having lived her live in a sheltered valley Kiora is not overly sure of her destiny but she knows she wants to do what is right for the people who look to her. 

Emane is the crowned prince and used to everyone falling all over themselves to grant him his every wish. His father takes pride in the fact that his family line has no magic. It is to Emane's horror and his fathers that Emane is destined to the be protector of the Solus. Going into combat for someone is not so bad but doing it for Kiora, a girl he cannot stand, is a true test. 

Kiora's and Emane's relation was a bit of a struggle to read at times. It felt like it changed around a lot and quickly. One moment they hated each other and the next they were hugging. It just felt a bit far fetched. I did see a few typos and a few words missing letters but it did not take away from the story. I personally met the author and she told me about the stories so I know this was her first book. I could tell it was a first attempt at writing but I was also able to see how the writing evolved over time and smoothed out. I hope to see further improvement in the rest of the series.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Dangerous

Dangerous was a random pick on my Nook. I have mixed feelings about the story, I did not overly love it but I was unable to stop reading.

Ria loves being a fire magic user and it is her first year at a prestigious magic school. Everything is going perfect for Ria including her super hot boyfriend who happens to be a water magic user until suddenly Ria starts losing control of herself as the first symptoms of magic disease start to appear in her life.

The love circle part is bugging me a lot. Ria is playing two boys and I do not like that at all. Her emotions change way too quickly for my taste and it seems a bit unbelievable at times. Other then that part I did enjoy the story and  I am curious to know more. I will get the second book eventually.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Echoes of Communism

Echos of Communism was a blind impulse buy, I saw the sticker that declared it was by a local author. I knew little of what the story was about when I started it but I was quickly hooked.



Friday, April 14, 2017

An Uexpected Wish

An Unexpected Wish was a free book for Barnes and Noble readouts. The cover was so cute I had to give it a try. Plus I love a good period romance.

Anne felt like a typical character, the oldest she was left to take care of her two younger sisters when her brother threw them out. Putting her hopes on her beautiful younger sister Anne works at setting up a match that will get them out of the poor house. In order to escape the stress of her life she walks the Fairy Steps and finally makes a local superstition come true, reaching the top without touching the sides. Unable to resist Anne makes a wish for a handsome and rich husband for herself. Feeling silly she starts to fall apart when the men in the town begin to court her unexpectedly.

I would have liked to see a bit more humor, moments felt repeated and overused at times. It was a cute idea just a bit too much filler in it for my taste personally. It did not hold my attention enough that I will pursue the stories about the younger sister's finding love. The intimate scenes were too much for my at times as well.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Harry Houdini Mysteries: The Dime Museum Murders

Harry Houdini Mysteries: The Dime Museum Murders was an impulse buy from the local bookstore that closed down.

The story is told completely from the point of view of Harry's brother Dash. Since no one is really aware of being an escape artist Harry works at a dime theater and is not the most popular act. Frustrated by his lack of success Harry is thrilled when the police summon him to help explain a locked room murder. Mistakenly confused as to thinking the police want help in solving the crime Harry eagerly rushes to scene only to learn he is wanted because his name sounds similar to a toy makers. Undeterred Harry decides to solve the mystery himself and unmake the murder.

Even though Dash was telling Harry's story Dash was my favorite character. He comes off as the more practical brother and his character was interesting. Having worked hard all his life to better himself Dash is extremely appreciative of his circumstances in life. All in all I enjoyed the story and I am grateful I bought the whole series on a whim.

Friday, March 31, 2017

This is Where it Ends

This is Where it Ends is not my usual choice of book however since I read a few pages in the bookstore months ago I have been unable to get it out of my head.

The story occurs in less then an hour but changes the lives of every student at Opportunity High. A normal school assembly turns into a massacre when a former student chains the doors shut and locks the students inside to start shooting them. Told from the point of view of four different students at times the story feels far too surreal and horrifying to keep reading yet I was unable to stop.

I always find it a bit more challenging to review a true story so I tend to just focus on the writing and how it makes me feel. Horrifying, chilling, heartbreaking, angry, and hopeful where among the vast array of emotions I felt. Every person was written well and made it feel like I knew them. A powerful and eye opening read.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Seven Minutes in Heaven

Seven Minutes in Heaven is the final book in The Lying Game series.

Four months of living a lie as her twin and Emma is failing to appease Sutton's killer by keeping up the proper appearances. All that falls apart though when a body is found in Sabino Canyon and suddenly the police want answers as to why a dead girl who bears a resemble to Sutton is in the canyon. Unsure what to do Emma continues to try to lie her way out of everything while hunting the killer. Drawing ever closer to the truth Emma realizes she is running out of time before she ends up dead as well.

I had not realized Seven Minutes in Heaven was the final book when I started it. After having read the previous books I was not about accept most of the answers that were being presented to Emma and I was thrilled to find out my hunch about the killer from the first book was right. \

Emma's transformation from lost, shy, foster girl to tough, nothing phases me Sutton, to finding herself was wonderful written out and displayed. The teenage years are hard for anyone let alone someone trying to play a deceased twin they never met before yet the writing was flawless and fit perfectly. Overall I just loved the whole series and one day I will try the Pretty Little Liars series, not sure I would ever try to watch either series on tv since that is not my thing.

True Lies

True Lies is a novella in The Lying Game series.

One of my major complaints about novellas is they just do not feel like a complete story more like a chapter about a character that should have been included in the main story. This is not the case with True Lies. Since Sutton is dead during the time line of The Lying Game novels it is nice to see things from her point of view in the novellas. Not only that but they feel like a complete and total story.

Desperate to maintain her idea of control Sutton balks at letting her little sister Laurel into the lying game. Charlotte and Madeline have other ideas though and quickly amend the lying rule games so the two sisters have to face off to see if Laurel is going to be allowed into the exclusive club. Several different sides of Sutton were displayed along with how insecure Sutton felt all the time, in such a short few chapters my view and opinion of Sutton changed drastically.

Cross My Heart, Hope to Die

Cross My Heart, Hope to Die is the fifth book in The Lying Game series.

Running out of suspects Emma continues to investigate Sutton's murder while doing all she can to keep the killer at bay. Still determined to bring Sutton's killer to justice Emma cowers in fear when she realizes that Becky, their mother, was in the canyon with Sutton the night she died. Could Becky have murdered her own daughter then forced her twin sister to step into her shoes in some twisted moment of regret?

For some reason I struggled with Cross My Heart, Hope to Die. I flat out did not want Becky to the killer so that was part of it. The drama and intense moments also seemed to dwindle down to nothing until the very end of the story at that point my interest was drastically caught up again.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Hide and Seek

Hide and Seek is the fourth book in The Lying Game Series.


Emma continues to search for her sister's killer while living her life. Having thought she cleared Sutton's little sister Laurel she Emma is distraught to learn that Laurel's alibi for the night is a lie. Did her little sister kill her after all? To add to her stress Emma has to deal with Sutton's parents who are acting extremely odd. Perhaps the killer is closer then Emma though.

It feels like each book is having less and less tension. In the first couple books the killer kept leaving cryptic messages for Emma to just play along. Yet in the Hide and Seek that creep vibe did not really appear. Maybe I am just getting used to the style of writing so it is not as impact. Despite this I have Cross My Heart and Hope to Die downloaded on my Nook waiting to be read.

Monday, March 13, 2017

Two Truths and a Lie

Two Truths and a Lie is the third book in the Lying Game series.

As Emma falls into the life of Sutton more and more her determination continues to grow when it comes to finding out who killed Sutton. Having cleared her friends for the most part Emma shifts her focus to Thayer. Having returned to town after missing for months Emma is convinced Thayer did Sutton in. Determined to find evidence she searches for the truth while trying to outwit a killer.

Two Truths and a Lie was slower and not as attention grabbing for me. I did like the plot but I would have liked a bit more drama and intense moments in it. The characters seemed a lot more tame and mild then in the previous books. Despite that I already have Hide and Seek which I am eager to start.

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Never Have I Ever

Never Have I Ever is the second book in The Lying Game series.

Totally unsure who to trust Emma continues to investigate the disappearance and death of her twin sister Sutton while living her life. Unsure on who to trust at all Emma decides to focus on the twitter twins, sisters who have a grudge against Sutton for a dangerous prank she played on them before disappearing. Determined to find answers Emma watches the Twitter Twins every move trying to figure out if they are responsible for her sister's disappearance and death.

Never Have I Ever was just as entertaining as The Lying Game. The entire time I was kept guessing as to each person's motives and trying to figure out what was going on. I loved the writing and how everyone is being portrayed in a way that could make them a suspect. I still have no clue who is responsible for Sutton's death but I am eager to find out, I cannot wait to start Two Truths and A Lie.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

The First Lie

The First Lie is a novella in the Lying Game series.

Sutton is a master of the lying game and loves to constantly make the stakes higher and the pranks bigger. When her best friend's brother comes back from soccer camp full of confidence the girls decide to knock him down a few pegs. Always doing a big prank at the start of the school year Sutton toys with Thayer and plays a dangerous game. 

Since this is a novella it was short but it felt like a full coherent story. I was thrilled to read something from Sutton's point of view since she appeared to be a majorly mean person in the Lying Game and I was anxious to know her thoughts. 

The Lying Game

The Lying Game was offered on Free Book Friday a couple weeks ago and since I was between books on my Nook I gave it a try.

Right away the story drew me in, Emma was in shock seeing a girl who looked just like her being strangled in a video on youtube. Unsure what to do Emma scours the web and comes across the facebook page of the girl that looks just like her. Messaging her quickly Emma is delighted when the girl writes back asking her to meet with her. Having nothing to lose Emma backs her bag and heads to Arizona to meet her long lost twin sister. Instead of her sister many puzzles appear the most puzzling of them all Sutton has disappeared and someone wants Emma to pretend to be her.

I never watched Pretty Little Liars but I did enjoy the story a lot, I was constantly kept guessing and I enjoyed that. I never knew what was coming or what was going to happen. I already have the second book checked out and I cannot wait to read it.


Cold-Hearted Rake


The only reason I chose Cold-Hearted Rake was I love the dress on the cover. Sadly it had far too many intimate scenes for my taste but I did enjoy the overall story.

Widowed after three days of marriage Kathleen is unsure of what is going to happen to her since the new Earl seems keen on disposing of the estate and moving on quickly. Worried for her three in-laws Kathleen attempts to think of a solution that will keep her and the younger girls off the streets. 

Devon has always loved his life of freedom and no worries. Learning that his cousin has passed away at a rather young age he is annoyed to bothered with the shambles of an estate he has inherited. Determined to piece the estate off as quickly as possible Devon does not count on Kathleen standing up to him and demanding he figure out what would happen to the 200 families that work on the estate.

I enjoyed the story and the writing just too many inmate scenes for me personally. I may continue on with the next book in the series if I happen to see it at the library but I wont seek it out.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

OyMG

I am not really sure what drew me to OyMG but I am glad I gave it a try.

Ellie loves to debate and give speeches. Upon learning that the school of her dreams is far out of her parents budget Ellie decides to attend a Christian debate camp in hopes of winning a scholarship to the school. Shortly after arriving at the Christian debate camp things start to go wrong for Ellie, being Jewish she has a rash of bad luck with Christian topics such as a Christmas tree. Managing to overcome the dilemma's Ellie befriends Devon the grandson of the woman awarding the scholarship. With a bit of help from her family Ellie works at discovering who she truly is.

OyMG was a really light, easy, read and it fit my mood perfectly. It was not heavy on the romance aspect of the story and focused more on Ellie facing tough decisions in her life. The writing was smooth and easy to follow along. All in all an entertaining read. 



Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Champion

Champion is the third and final novel in the Legend trilogy.

Day has sacrificed a lot to stop the corrupt Republic and Elector. With a new elector Day hopes for suitability and change to come to the Republic. Knowing that he holds the power of the common person Day continues to work with June in helping the Republic mend it's broken bond with the citizens. All is going well until Day learns that the experiments the Republic did on him are catching up and he has little time before the side affects will take his life.

June has it all, she is in a position of power, learning how to govern the Republic and close the Aden the current Elector of the republic. Yet everything still feels wrong, June yearns to be near Day who seems to be going out of his way to ignore her. However when crisis approaches the Republic due to the colonies June and Day have no choice to be to unite in an attempt to save the Republic one last time.

It has been several months since I read Prodigy and even longer since I read Legend. I recall I adored legend and was disappointed in Prodigy. That is pretty typical for me when it comes to trilogies however usually the third book redeems the series for me. Champion started to do that for me until the end. I hated the ending, ruined the whole series for me sadly. Despite not liking the ending I would consider reading more of Marie Lu's work.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Endure

I cannot recall the last time I was able to read a trilogy one after another so it was a wonderful treat. Endure is the third and final book in the Defy trilogy.

Alexa has come a long way, no longer having to hide that she is a girl and in love with the King Alexa works at accepting more in her life beyond the sword. Struck by the orders from Rafe to protect him at all costs and her best friend taken prisoner by Rafe Alexa knows only that she must rescue her friend.

I was seriously disappointed in Endure. I read it in one sitting for the most part and it was super repetitive. It felt like I had read the same parts in the previous books and just kept looping. After a hundred pages or so of the same stuff the last battle finally started which was a huge disappointment. It felt like Sara B. Larson took the easy way out with the ending. I doubt I will pursue further works if Larson continue to write.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Ignite

Ignite is the second book in the Defy trilogy.

Having helped Damion take the throne from his father Alexa is happy for things to go back to normal. Terrified of Damion's feelings towards her and embarrassed by the burn scars on half her face Alexa runs from her feelings about Damion. Refusing to acknowledge how she feels for him she just hides behind being his guard. Soon a delegation from a neighboring kingdom arrives to meet with the young king only to bring with them a host of problems.

Since a third country was introduced I wish that it had been set up a little bit in Defy. Barely mentioned I was sort of confused as to why a third country was suddenly needed. I did enjoy Ignite though, the writing was fast paced and wonderfully smooth. I checked out Endure last night and I cannot wait to start it.

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Defy

The only reason I chose Defy was it happened to be on the front page of the library homepage and available for check out. It took me several chapters to finally get into the story but after about five chapters I was hooked.

Alexa is hiding among her enemies, determined not to enter the breeding house to produce soldiers for the king's army Alexa lets her twin cut her hair and masquerades a boy. Not just any boy though, the best fighter among the soldiers Alexa becomes Alex and is chosen to be the crown prince's personal guard. Disgruntled with the attitude of the spoiled, air head prince Alex just focuses on keeping the prince alive and her secret safe.

When I saw the Defy was getting negative reviews on Goodreads and that it was so slow to start I almost stopped trying. I am thankful I did not. Normally I hate love triangles with a passion but a love triangle did not really exist in Defy, Alex was always clear with her feelings. I really enjoyed the magic and fighting system in Defy, they both felt like separate entities that were well thought out. Despite being left with a couple questions the end did tie everything up nicely. Maybe the questions I had will be answered in Ignite.