Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Review: Written in Red by Anne Bishop



Title
: Written in Red
Author: Anne Bishop
Series: The Others, Book 1
Pages: 433 (Audio: 18hrs and 32min. )
Format: Audiobook from Audible.
Narrator: Alexandra Harris
Publisher: Penguin Audio
Release Date: May 3rd 2013 (Book: March 5th)
Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository
 | Audible
As a cassandra sangue, or blood prophet, Meg Corbyn can see the future when her skin is cut—a gift that feels more like a curse. Meg’s Controller keeps her enslaved so he can have full access to her visions. But when she escapes, the only safe place Meg can hide is at the Lakeside Courtyard—a business district operated by the Others.

Shape-shifter Simon Wolfgard is reluctant to hire the stranger who inquires about the Human Liaison job. First, he senses she’s keeping a secret, and second, she doesn’t smell like human prey. Yet a stronger instinct propels him to give Meg the job. And when he learns the truth about Meg and that she’s wanted by the government, he’ll have to decide if she’s worth the fight between humans and the Others that will surely follow.
Anne Bishop is one of the best Fantasy writers around, in my opinion anyway. I was a big fan of her Black Jewels trilogy in high school, so when I only recently stumbled across Written in Red on audible, I was shocked I hadn't heard of it sooner... Well, I have been out of the book loop for a while, so I suppose I wasn't that surprised.

Anne Bishop is a master, Written in Red is an Adult Urban Fantasy book so masterfully written I couldn't put it down, Alexandra Harris did a fantastic job as the narrator, I just loved it when she voiced Sam's little Aroo when he is in wolf form, I'll never get sick of it.

It reads more like a fantasy than the usual urban fantasy books that everyone is familiar with. But even if you prefer one genre over the other, you will still find yourself falling steadily in love with the world and character's that Anne breathes life into.

Just a fair warning, the romance in Anne Bishop novels always tend to build slowly and steadily, so even though there is no clothes ripping and passionate love making... YET. The tension and hints of romance are all there and is so, so delicious. (Especially in book two, but that review is for another day. But I will say you can cut the tension with a knife, its so good.)

The world is crafted to perfection, the characters are amazing and the story is spellbinding. So I didn't mind at all about the slow romance, because we can see it coming... which I honestly prefer anyway.

Meg Corbyn is our heroine, she's damaged and a cassandra sangue aka a blood prophet that has been locked up her entire life, she's never been in the outside world and doesn't really know how to interact with people, especially the terra indigene aka shape shifters and many, many other creatures that go bump in the night.

Usually innocent, ignorant girls in books - even if they have a decent excuse, annoy the hell out of me, but not Meg. She was a great character who has common sense and ACTUALLY uses it! While sure, she was scared of the terra indigene to a degree, she treated them not only with fear, but with a simple straightforwardness and kindness that they were definitely not used to receiving.

The only time I was annoyed with Meg's naivete was with her interactions with Asia 'super bitch, I wanted her dead' Crane. But it was well done, and a little suspense never hurt anyone.

Watching all the big terrifying monsters falling in love with Meg one after the other was definitely one of the highlights of the book, it was adorable how she gathered some big allies without even trying.

One of my favourite parts in the book was when Meg goes to say hi to 'the girl on the lake' otherwise known as Winter, an elemental who is, yup... winter. No one, not even Simon the big leader and alpha-male wants to piss off Winter, or any elemental for that matter otherwise they pretty much are all dead. Meg just walks up and says hi and asks if she can get her anything... a few library books and an incident with a green scarf not being 'her colour' later, Meg has a friend for life. Who will do ANYTHING to protect her.

It just goes to show what a simple act of kindness can do.

There are so many different kinds of paranormal creatures in this book and I just love how they aren't mortal enemies and trying to kill each other, they live together and help each other. Human's are pretty much the enemy in this book, the terra indigene and humans live in a wary state of peace. Not understanding each other, causes problems... very big ones that we see slowly coming to the surface throughout this novel.

I loved that we have two police officers, and a captain who are wanting to bridge that gap instead of fanning the flames. Also Meg, the Human Liaison, who isn't strictly human, but not terra indigene helps them along the way.

Just want to quickly mention Simon, who you may think is just your typical douchey alpha-male at the start of the novel, isn't in the least... okay he is still an alpha wolf so yeah that is there. But he has hidden depths and moments with his little nephew Sam who has been stuck in wolf form since the brutal murder of his mother that just wants me want to hug them both.

I want to talk about so much more, but this review is getting a bit long. Quick mention of my favourite characters that haven't been mentioned above... PONY'S! & Tess... and okay, everyone, the only person I didn't like was Asia.

I'll finish up by saying that I wasn't bored in any single part of this novel, which is big for me these days. I couldn't stop listening and everyone needs this book in their life. NOW!

Written in Red
By

Anne Bishop
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Sunday, September 15, 2013

Review: Ward Against Darkness by Melanie Card



Title
: Ward Against Darkness
Author: Melanie Card
Series: Chronicles of a Reluctant Necromancer #2
Pages: 352
Format: Kindle 
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Published: August 27th 2013
Goodreads | Amazon
The last thing Ward de'Ath wants is more trouble. On the run from both the law and the criminal underworld, Ward and Celia flee Brawenal City only to stumble into the mansion of a powerful evil necromancer. And when Ward discovers the man possesses a dangerous grimoire, his duty leaves him no choice. He can't allow the necromancer to keep the grimoire. But the mansion is filled with monsters--human and undead--and Ward has no way of telling who's friend or foe. The only person he can trust is Celia who dominates more of his thoughts and feelings everyday. But there are still laws in the way of anything but friendship. She's still dead and he's still alive . . . for now.
Ward Against Darkness was one of my most anticipated books this year, so for some reason I forgot all about the release date and when I routinely went to go check up on it, I got a big surprise when I discovered that it had been out for a few weeks. I barely could contain my excitement as I quickly purchased it on kindle.

But before I devoured it straight away like I really wanted to. I decided to re-read Ward Against Death since I could barely remember what happened. I was so glad that I did, usually I don't do this as there are so many books and so little time, but since I loved Ward Against Death so much the first time around I thought it couldn't hurt to read the first few chapters but ended up reading it all.

Ward Against Darkness had everything I loved about the first book. Celia was just as bad-ass and ruthless in her deadly assassin ways. She has grown so much as a character, thanks to Ward she proves to have a bit more of a heart and conscience than she had when she was actually alive. The irony, right?

Ward was just as adorable and completely clueless to Celia's feelings as he was in the first book. Ward also has grown a lot as a character thanks to Celia and their adventures in the previous book. Ward is a bit more brave, strong and well, powerful... if only he could see how awesome and kick-ass he could be! He also has learnt his lesson to be wary of women and their seductive 'oh help me, I'm a sad, poor helpless woman in need of a big strong man' routine. Barely.

Although I really liked Ward Against Darkness, and I understand that Celia and Wards adventure and well... romance, is just barely just beginning. I just expected something a tiny bit more. Probably more on the romance front than anything, but hopefully there will be more of that in the third book! *shakes fist* I hope wish demand.

I really enjoyed the look we got of the Innecroestri (very bad necromancers) and that they weren't so extinct as the rest of the world really thinks them to be. Also we find out that maybe Celia was made through Innecroestri magic - yet, is obviously different. I think Ward might have actually brought her back to life, but hey who knows, that's just my theory so I'm probably wrong.

I just hope that Celia doesn't think that magic is the cause of her feelings for Ward because they need to make-out already... well again.

I really hope that
Ward's grandfather makes an appearance in future books, but hopefully Ward wont get in too much trouble for bringing Celia back from the dead, because he has no idea how powerful he is. But the question is... does Ward's grandfather know?

I loved that Nazarius is back! I really liked him in the first book and thought he was a great addition to the second. I hope that whatever sinister plan the seer has up his sleeve will be backfire in his face and that Nazarius's new found friendship with Ward will win him over to Ward's side in the end.

I could go on talking about this book forever, so I'm going to stop here and lightly nudge everyone who hasn't read Ward Against Death to go get that book pronto! You're missing out on one heck of a read!

Ward Against Darkness
By

Melanie Card

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Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Review: Darker Days by Jus Accardo



Title
: Darker Days
Author: Jus Accardo
Series: The Darker Agency
Pages: 332
Format: Kindle 
Publisher: Entangled Publishing
Published: August 19th 2013
Goodreads | Amazon 
Jessie Darker goes to high school during the day, but at night she helps with the family investigation business. Cheating husbands and stolen inheritances? They’re your girls—but their specialty is a bit darker. Zombie in your garage? Pesky Poltergeist living in your pool? They’ll have the problem solved in a magical minute. For a nominal fee, of course...

When gorgeous new client, Lukas Scott, saunters into the office requesting their help to find a stolen box, it sounds like a simple case—until the truth comes out. The box is full of Sin.

Seven deadly ones, in fact.

They’ve got five days to recapture the Sins before they're recalled by the box, taking seven hijacked human bodies with them. Easy peasy—except for one thing...

There’s a spell that will allow the Sins to remain free, causing chaos forever. When the key ingredient threatens the life of someone she knows, Jessie must make the ultimate choice between love and family—or lose everything.
Jessie Darker, is another great kick-ass heroine that Jus Accardo has cooked up for all of us. I must say for everyone who is a big fan of Accardo's Denazen series, Darker Days does have all the amazing unique things I love about Jus's writing, although don't go in expecting Jessie to be just like Dez... because she isn't. But I'm not saying that in a bad way. Both girls are awesome, and both are different, just as they're meant to be.

But that doesn't make me love Darker Days any less. Jessie although badass, isn't as rough around the edges as our lovable Dez is. I didn't want to compare the books, because I hate doing that but I thought that Jessie was just an interesting comparison compared to Dez and I'm looking forward to reading more of both worlds and especially other characters that Jus will create in the future.

I want to compare Kale and Lukas too, I'm sure everyone already has but I can't help myself, both are equally delicious. I love how they both can be completely bad-ass, yet sexy and completely clueless to some of the rules of society in the same way. Kale obviously is a bit more oblivious to the ways of the world since he practically grew up in lock down. Lucas on the other hand is from a completely different time and would be considered a gentleman - which I'm sure that Jessie, as well as myself love but wishes he wasn't so 'gentlemanly' at times. 

Okay enough comparing, time to talk about the book itself.

I love detective stories, so when I read the synopsis and discovered its a detective paranormal agency I was excited. Everything about the book was unique. I swear no one in the YA industry can write a book about a teenage detective without people scoffing and thinking about Veronica Mars and then comparing the book closely to the popular teen hit while they read. I've been guilty of doing this in the past and I'm happy to say that this didn't happen at all while I read Darker Days, maybe it was because of the paranormal aspect but once I started reading it didn't cross my mind at all until I was finished.

The only thing that made me a bit apprehensive about reading Darker Days was the mention of the seven deadly sins, but I shouldn't have worried at all. It was very well done and I really enjoyed what crazy antics the different sins brought to the table.

I thought the creative way that Jus used demons was great and I can't wait to find out more about different demons, and the ones we already know in the next book... things will clearly get a little crazy with everything that happened in the end.

I recommend Darker Days to all Jus Accardo fans and especially to readers who haven't picked up Denazen series, this book is definitely worth checking out for all paranormal YA lovers out there.

Darker Days
By

Jus Accardo

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Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday: World After by Susan Ee



"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that fellow bloggers can't wait to get their hands on!

Title: World After
Series: Penryn & the End of Days
Author: Susan Ee
Release Date: November 19th 2013
Publisher: Skyscape
Goodreads | Book Depository | Amazon
In this sequel to the bestselling fantasy thriller, Angelfall, the survivors of the angel apocalypse begin to scrape back together what's left of the modern world.

When a group of people capture Penryn's sister Paige, thinking she's a monster, the situation ends in a massacre. Paige disappears. Humans are terrified. Mom is heartbroken.

Penryn drives through the streets of San Francisco looking for Paige. Why are the streets so empty? Where is everybody? Her search leads her into the heart of the angels' secret plans where she catches a glimpse of their motivations, and learns the horrifying extent to which the angels are willing to go.

Meanwhile, Raffe hunts for his wings. Without them, he can't rejoin the angels, can't take his rightful place as one of their leaders. When faced with recapturing his wings or helping Penryn survive, which will he choose?
November still seems like a mile away, but I couldn't resist putting World After as my WoW this week. I bought Angelfall when it first came out, and it sat on my kindle for a good while and now it's one of my favourite books of all time, hell I'd say that its probably at the very top of my top 5! Anyone who hasn't read this masterpiece of a series needs to go grab it before World After comes out... because you're missing out on one hell of a read!

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Review: Binding the Shadows (Arcadia Bell #3) by Jenn Bennett



Title
: Binding the Shadows
Author: Jenn Bennett
Series: Arcadia Bell #3
Pages: 368
Format: Kindle
Publisher: Pocket Books
Published: May 28th 2013
Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository
In the third book in this beloved and “riveting” (Romantic Times) urban fantasy series, demon-friendly tiki bar owner Arcadia Bell discovers more about her own evolving, and possibly destructive, magical abilities when her bar is the target of a demonic crime wave.

Renegade mage and bartender Arcadia Bell has had a rough year, but now the door to her already unstable world is unhinging. When a citywide crime wave erupts, Cady's demon-friendly tiki bar is robbed by Earthbounds wielding surreal demonic abilities that just flat-out shouldn't exist. With the help of her devilishly delicious boyfriend, Lon Butler, Cady sets out to find the people who wronged her—but her targets aren't the only ones experiencing unnatural metamorphoses. Can Cady track down the monsters responsible before the monster inside her destroys everything—and everyone—she loves? If she survives this adventure, one thing is certain: it's last call for life as she knows it.
Over the last few day's I've been on an Urban Fantasy reading frenzy, I'm kind of sorry for all my goodreads friends and everyone on facebook who are witness to my slightly insane and sarcastic book updates over the last few days. Okay, I'm not that sorry.

Arcadia Bell is a Heroine that you don't want to mess with.

I fell in love with Jenn Bennett's world and the characters in it during Kindling the Moon. I was expecting something good, but nothing that great, and although I really enjoyed Kindling the Moon, my enjoyment and love for this series has been growing with each book.

My favourite character? Jupe wins hands down. I was a little sad when Jupe wasn't immediately in the book at page one, but like always, he doesn't take long to appear. I love watching Cady and Jupes relationship evolve, in each book they get closer.

Jupe is the most adorable teenage motormouth in existence, I just want to hug him to smithereens. He breaks your heart (in a good way) a little each book... especially in this one, when the rest of his family rolls into town.

I hope that Jenn decides to write a few books about grown up Jupe one day, because that would be an amazing thing to see!

Naturally Jupe is a package deal for Arcadia with his sexy as sin father, Lon. I must say even though He's a lot older than Cady and his mustache is described as a sexy pirate mustache, I try really really hard to forget he has one. That is his only flaw in my book, I don't care about his age, but the mustache freaks me out.

Arcadia aka Cady is the star of these books, she has crazy magical power which just gets even crazier in this book. I can't wait to see what lengths she'll achieve in the next book. I just hope that she can get rid of her psychopath mother once and for all.

My favourite thing about this book, well any book really is that there aren't a million love interests. Cady doesn't sleep around, she meets Lon in book one and they don't break up at the end of each book, or halfway in between. I always get happy when books like this exist and I hope that Cady and Lon stay together for the duration of the books.

I must say though, the end freaked me out. Only because I'm terrified about what will happen in book four. (Highlight to read on, MASSIVE SPOILER: I don't want her to lose the baby, I really really don't want her to lose the baby. So far Jenn hasn't followed the usual stereotypical lines of Urban Fantasy and I hope that she continues the trend so that Cady doesn't lose the baby. I think that would cause massive problems because, how can she fight her mother while pregnant? and god knows what the psychotic bitch would do if she found out Cady was pregnant, could she use the baby against her? My thoughts go on. But at least if she had the baby she wouldn't be able to run from her relationship with Lon and Jupe.

Although if Cady does lose the baby, that could cause conflict between her and Lon, it could either drive her away to protect them or make them stronger. It would give her free reign to cause hell for her mother. But I think It would be more interesting if she had the baby, but would probably give me a heart attack while reading because so much shit is going down. Anyone who's read the book, let me know your theories!
END OF SPOILERS)

I can't wait for the next book, It's going to be torture waiting till April, but hey at least it's my birthday month, so I'm sure that Banishing the Dark will be one of the many presents I buy myself.

So much happened in Binding the Shadows that I could keep writing this review forever, but heres a quick rundown... we discover douchebag Dare's true motives, Yvonne the mother of hell finally shows up, Hajo the crazy junkie makes a re-appearance and kind of made me fall a little in love him and Cady sits down with Jupe and Kar Yee and tells them her secrets. 

All the Urban Fantasy lovers out there need to buy Kindling the Moon, if you haven't discovered the amazing world that Jenn Bennett has created, you're missing out, big time!

Binding the Shadows
By

Jenn Bennett

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Monday, August 12, 2013

Review: The Pirates Wish by Cassandra Rose Clarke



Title
: The Pirate's Wish
Author: Cassandra Rose Clarke
Series: The Assassin's Curse #2
Pages: 336
Format: Kindle & Paperback
Publisher: Strange Chemistry
Published: June 4th 2013
Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository
After setting out to break the curse that binds them together, the pirate Ananna and the assassin Naji find themselves stranded on an enchanted island in the north with nothing but a sword, their wits, and the secret to breaking the curse: complete three impossible tasks. With the help of their friend Marjani and a rather unusual ally, Ananna and Naji make their way south again, seeking what seems to be beyond their reach.

Unfortunately, Naji has enemies from the shadowy world known as the Mists, and Ananna must still face the repercussions of going up against the Pirate Confederation. Together, Naji and Ananna must break the curse, escape their enemies — and come to terms with their growing romantic attraction.
I've been eagerly awaiting The Pirate's Wish ever since I put down The Assassins Curse. Even though I pre-ordered the book, I couldn't wait any longer and gave in and bought the kindle book cause I just HAD to know what happened.

I'm so glad I gave into temptation.

The Pirate's Wish was a fantastic conclusion to Cassandra Rose Clarke's amazing world. I'm sad to say that it is ending only after two books, but I'm very happy with the conclusion... even though I would have like a little epilogue or something just a bit more!

I think the best thing about this series is that Naiji and Ananna don't instantaneously fall in love, it takes time for both of them to figure out their feelings. They don't magically figure it out at the same time either, which is another factor into why I love this series so much. The romance isn't the focal point of the book... a lot of other things happen.

Everything happens really fast, but not in a bad way, sure I would have loved another book - but that's only because I just enjoyed every minute of this fantastic world and the colourful character's that Clarke created, it would have been nice to have some of the little things explained more clearly.

The Manticore is one of my favourite characters of all time, I thought she was was quite hilarious in the way she became friends with Ananna, calling her Girl-Human and demanding things from her... naturally Ananna, being the nice Girl-Human-Pirate she is decided hey, if she isn't eating them, why not become buddies with the flesh eating monster, because it wasn't the manticores fault she was born with the taste for human flesh.

Yes, you read that right. Ananna is great, the Manticore is great, the book is great... you should read it.

I must say I was expecting a bit more hardship with the undoing of the curse, Yes it was really hard. Not saying they were slacking or anything, but even though I think it was very well done, at the same time after clearing the third hurdle I was just left thinking 'oh, that's it?' probably just because the way it happened. (Which I wont spoil!)

So even though I think things happened very quickly, Cassandra Rose Clarke did an amazing job with clearing up all the loose ends from the first book as well as everything that happened in The Pirate's Wish. I'll be eagerly awaiting more books from her in the future!

The Pirates Wish
By
Cassandra Rose Clarke

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Saturday, June 15, 2013

Stacking the Shelves #6

 Stacking the Shelves is a meme hosted by Tynga where booklovers can share with everyone all the books that they got in the mail that week!

This week I got a lot of goodies in the mail! I've already devoured a few and can't wait to read the rest!

I also got these lovely audible books:

Last but not least, my kindle haul:

Well, that's all I got in the mail this week! I don't think I'll be reviewing the audio books, but if anyone is interested in a review for them, let me know! They were both very fun books and I highly recommend anyone who is a fan of historical romance!

Hope that everyone else got some great books in the mail this week, will be looking forward to checking them out!
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