Wednesday, October 26, 2016

~Waiting on Wednesday~ The Alchemists of Loom (Loom Saga #1)

                “Waiting On” Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.  Basically books that are not yet out that we are dying to get our hands on.  This week’s pick is:

The Alchemist of Loom (Loom Saga #1) by Elise Kova
Out: 1/10

From Goodreads:
                Her vengeance.  His vision.

                Ari lost everything she once loved when the Five Guild’s resistance fell to the Dragon King.  Now, she uses her unparalleled gift for clockwork machinery in tandem with notoriously unscrupulous morals to contribute to a thriving underground organ market.  There isn’t a place on Loom that is secure from the engineer turned thief, and her magical talents are sold to the highest bidder as long as the job defies their Dragon oppressors.

                Cvareh would do anything to see his sister usurp the Dragon King and sit on the throne.  His family’s house has endured the shame of being the lowest rung in the Dragon’s society for far too long.  The Alchemist Guild, down on Loom, may just hold the key to putting his kin in power, if Cvareh can get to them before the Dragon King’s assassins.

                When Ari stumbles upon a wounded Cvareh, she sees an opportunity to slaughter an enemy and make a profit off his corpse.  But the Dragon sees an opportunity to navigate Loom with the best person to get him where he wants to go.

                He offers her the one thing Ari can’t refuse:  A wish of her greatest desire, if she brings him to the Alchemists of Loom.

Why I’m Waiting:
                 I’m behind in her other series because RL and all the books.  Still I really enjoyed the first couple and I am in desperate need to get on it and read the rest and catch up but even behind I’m excited for the new series and starting and staying caught up this time ;)

                What are you waiting on?  Tell me below what you think of this title and leave a link to your WoW as well so I can check it out.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday: Halloween mood reads!

                Hello everyone!  Top Ten Tuesday is just how it sounds, a topic is picked and we put our Top Ten for that in a post and share and check out everyone’s answers.  Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

The top ten today is:  Halloween / Scary mood books

Books I’ve read:
The Forbidden Game by L.J. Smith
The Carver by Jacob Devlin (review)
I Zombie by Jo Michaels (review)
Charming (review) & Asleep (review) by Krystal Wade
The Raven Boys (Raven Cycle #1) by Maggie Stiefvater (review)

Books I haven’t read but give me the impression they will be great Halloween type feel:
Anna Dressed in Blood (Anna #1) by Kendare Blake
The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff
Asylum (Asylum #1) by Madeleine Roux
The Fall by Bethany Griffin
Coraline by Neil Gaiman

                 Tell me what you think of my list in the comments below.  Which would you recommend so I know which ones to get first?  Also please link back to your Top Ten as well so I can check out your list and see what I missed!

Monday, October 24, 2016

Smash & Grab

                Hello happy readers!  I have some news that I’m sitting on that I hope to share with you later in the week but until then I’m working on getting things back on track and staying that way.  So today I’m discussing a book I reviewed for No BS Book Reviews and the original post can be found here, for Smash &Grab by Amy Christine Parker.

Rating:  4 Stars

                Described as Ocean’s Eleven meets star-crossed lovers and I was in.  First I love me a good heist story.  The last book I read that had a heist feel was Six of Crows and I LOVED it so I went into this one excited and ready to be entertained and I sure enough was. 

                We have the POVS of our two star-crossed loves, Lexi the rich girl who with her friends keep pushing and creating these adrenaline filled dares.  Her life is a mess since her father was arrested.  I liked that she was a girl of her means of course, she liked nice things sure but she was also self-aware and didn’t come across as too entitled.  Christian on the other hand is from a very poor family in the center of gang territory.  He and his friends have managed to stay out of the gang as a member but given the circumstances of their life they have been roped into doing bank jobs for the gang.  He studies hard and wants out, he wants a better life for himself and his family but breaking out of the neighborhood and the thin ties with the gang are not that easy.  Christian for me a bit jaded and had a chip on his shoulder for sure but he didn’t let it rule him.  The most important thing for me in dual POV books is to make sure that each POV has a distinct voice and this did that for sure.

                Both Lexi and Christian were working with their own people doing their own things when their paths collide.  Literally.  The dynamic of the relationship from the start is a mix between chemistry and distrust.  They both have their group of friends, people they would do anything for so they understand that but fundamentally their lives and agendas are different.  Robbing banks may give you an adrenaline rush but it’s much more serious than breaking in to buildings to BASE jump off the top. 

                Christian is without a doubt facing a harsher reality than Lexi.  She is seeking the truth, uncovering all the details of what had her father arrested.  Christian is seeking a better life and to stay alive. While the two circumstances are vastly different it’s easy to see that for Lexi and living how she has her whole life her situation feels like the worst thing that can happen, with nothing to compare it to.  I liked the duality of the worlds, high end posh and low income gang territory.    

                There was no insta-love happening.  There was insta-attraction that leads to getting to know one another.  Some flirtation and romance was present but it wasn’t the focus and while I was rooting to see what would develop between two characters of such different backgrounds and with the same trust issues it didn’t consume the storyline. 
                Some aspects of the storyline seem insane verging on the unbelievable, teens able to pull things like this off but I could roll with it.  Besides as I’ve never robbed a bank or went undercover I can’t speak from experience.  Having worked in the 911 field however I can easily say some people make themselves easy victims by leaving stuff out or doors unlocked.  I don’t commend crime and want to hope for the best in others but I also won’t leave my vehicle unlocked with the keys inside and expect it to still be there the next day.  Just saying.  I can see it.

                That said overall it was a quick read and one that had me entertained until the end.  I was shocked at times which in itself surprised me.  I love a good crime show, Criminal Minds and Dexter being favorites of mine, clearly I like to root for the good guy and the bad guy so this was right up my alley.  I did have the urge to watch some heist movies when I finished reading as it put me in that mood and I always call that a win.  So if the concept sounds interesting to you and you enjoy heists then I would give this one a chance to grab you.

                  Until next time...

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

~Waiting on Wednesday~ Windwitch

                “Waiting On” Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.  Basically books that are not yet out that we are dying to get our hands on.  This week’s pick is:

Windwitch (The Witchlands #2) by Susan Dennard
Out: 1/10

From Goodreads: 
                On a continent ruled by three empires, some are born with a “witchery,” a magical skill that sets them apart from others.
                In this follow-up to New York Times bestsettling Truthwitch, a shadow man haunts the Nubrevan streets, leaving corpses in his wake—and then raising those corpses from the dead.  Windwitch continues the tale of Merik—cunning privateer, prince, and windwitch.

Why I’m Waiting:
                 I really enjoyed book one (review) and that ending left me with lots of feels and things I needed to know more about.  Plus it looks like we get more focus on Merik in this one and I really enjoyed his parts in the last book so I’m looking forward to more of him. 

                What are you waiting on?  Tell me below what you think of this title and leave a link to your WoW as well so I can check it out.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday: Characters I'd name someone/thing after

                Hello everyone!  Top Ten Tuesday is just how it sounds, a topic is picked and we put our Top Ten for that in a post and share and check out everyone’s answers.  Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

The top ten today is:  Characters I’d name someone/thing after

Okay so this isn’t really fair since I see names left and right that I think “OMG I want to get a puppy just to name them this” so I would either need a huge piece of land to take in all the puppies or narrow this bad boy down.

Remus/Sirius/Fluffy/Dobby or Luna from Harry Potter for a dog like come on!
Thorne from The Lunar Chronicles
Karou and Zuzana from Daughter of Smoke & Bone series I thought it looked cool but after hearing the Audiobook I just loved it! 
Killian from Firstlife also it makes me think of Hook on Once Upon a Time
Nyx from the House of Night series
Kaz or Jesper from Six of Crow series
Jem from The Mortal Instruments series
Blue from The Raven Cycle it also doubles as my favorite color!
Rowan from SO many books!  Worldwalker series, Throne of Glass, and so many more

                 Tell me what you think of my list in the comments below.  Also please link back to your Top Ten as well so I can check out your list and see what I missed!

Monday, October 17, 2016

And I Darken (The Conquerors Saga #1)

                Hello Happy Readers!  So today I am happy to share with you a review I did for No BS Book Reviews and the original post can be found here.  It’s the first book in a new Conquerors Saga by Kiersten White, And I Darken which puts a twist on history as we know it. 

Rating:  4 Stars

Female Vlad the Impaler.  I was in.  Nothing else just that and I wanted to read it.  Oh and the pretty cover didn’t hurt matters.

This book covers so much ground literally starting with our MC Lada is born.  We follow along as she grows giving us enough in certain years to understand who she is at each point which was a huge plus because Lada is a bit rough and having her story, her backstory, really develops her character.  Plus things of importance were happening early on.  Very intricate story.

The world is lushly described and I feel like I could have been there which is good since I wasn’t the best student in history.  So I knew next to nothing about the Ottoman Empire.  And Vlad is what people say spurred the Dracula story is the extent of my knowledge there.  The lands change as the story progresses and the characters grow they move around.  In her original home of Wallachian, where she feels a sense of home and connection.  When she is away from there she always sees the Ottoman Empire as her prison even if sometimes the prison isn't so bad.

Lada was a strong character for me and I enjoyed her immensely as she voiced or thought many of the same things I was thinking when I was reading.  I normally don't read historical fiction all that often being one who doesn't take well to the whole women's place is to be used for trade like cattle and having no rights and such.  She doesn't agree with that either and refuses to be defined by her gender.  I adore this!  The way she interacts with everyone from servants to people who are supposed to be her superiors.  She understands the world and how it works.  She is cruel but she is also cunning and smart as a whip she is made for this world.  Including her interaction and dedication to the Janissaries specifically my favorite one, Nicolae!

"The sooner you stop fighting, the easier your life will be.  That is what your purpose is."
Lada stood so abruptly she nearly fell backward.  "No."

Another POV we see through is Lada's younger brother, Radu.  He is much the opposite of Lada.  While she is brawn and sheer might and a force to be reckoned with Radu is more of a quite force working from the sidelines playing long games.  I remember reading and likening him to Littlefinger or Varys on Game of Thrones in the way he can change and adapt. My favorite thing about dual POV books is seeing how different halves see the same event so vastly differently and you get tons of that here.

This book has lots going for it from the history and world to the diverse and complex characters even before diving into the action of a world at war with battles to be fought on many fronts.  Both from outside forces and within.  It's a political story as well as there is always a power play happening with thrones and leadership. With all this going for it and the ability to keep me on the edge of my seat it also held some romance as well.  Romance that conflicted my emotions.

What held this book back for me a bit is also something that despite my issues with it kept me hoping for more and wanting so desperately to root for it.  Romance.  The romance was well played out and I could see how it naturally fell in so many different forms throughout the book but my biggest issues is more a cultural one.  I couldn’t really ship the ship I wanted so badly to ship.  I wanted to but any feelings expressed from one party while they seemed so sincere, they lost that when he would say this then visit his harem full of wives and concubines.  I understand that is a cultural thing and what is to be expected and such but I don't like it.  Still the fact that I wanted so badly to want to ship it even when it would ruffle my feathers says a lot. 

This is the first book in a new series and I do intend to follow up with the next book for sure and recommend this one!  Lada, Radu, and Mehmed have a lot more story in them to be sure and I'm excited to see where it will take them.  

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Concealed (Beholder #2) by Christina Bauer

                Hello happy readers.  I am working my way back up to being caught up in reading and real life.  I’m still a bit behind but I’m getting much closer and wanted to dive back in.  Though for the current time I think I will adjust my posting schedule leaving off Friday posts until I’m caught back up.  If you’re wondering still in the chaos of trying to purchase said house but it’s out of my hands for the moment.  So back into the real reason we do this, books!

                Today I wanted to discuss Concealed, the second book in the Beholder series by Christina Bauer.  I reviewed the first book Cursed here. She is also the author of another series I adore Angelbound, but now her books have a new home at Monster House Books.  I’m excited for the new Angelbound book as well but right now I want to discuss my thoughts on Concealed.  I was lucky enough to get an ARC from the publisher/author.  You know the drill: sequel = spoilers from book one

Rating: 5 Totem Rings

                Elea, Grand Mistress Necromancer, and her Caster ally Rowan banished the Tsar in the last book but the Vicomte was able to escape and take many of her necromancer sisters with him.  Now Elea is on a quest to find her sisters and put an end to this evil man, who may be even more vicious and dangerous than the Tsar.  It’s a rescue mission that could turn deadly easily and while she may have Rowan’s help that may cause its own set of dangers as they are opposites.  Plus it’s always dangerous to have your heart on the line.

                First I read this in one sitting.  I flew through it and couldn’t put it down.  It’s so easy to fall back into the story and into the magic of it all.  Things are not looking good.  Elea is confident in her strength but not so much in her feelings, after being trained to never show emotion and to stem all her feelings, a lesson he was never good with, after becoming close to Rowan in the last book it’s hard to block him out.  Especially when he keeps popping up to offer his help.  On her own Elea is a force to be reckoned with and I adore her dedication to finding her sisters no matter the cost.  It’s not just about saving her people, her race, but also finding her friend and little Ada which only warms you up to her that much more!  She isn’t cold and heartless, she actually has a much bigger heart than most. 

                Rowan.  Okay so I was totally in love with him in the first book.  I adore him in this as well, minus the secrets for his people, while I understand but don’t like.  He is the same sexy and sweet Castor we got to know in the first book.  He wants to protect Elea and tries to convince her to go home but he also respects that she isn’t the type to sit on the side lines and instead offers her whatever help he can.  He treats her as an equal which is a huge positive!  Plus the interaction between them is electric!

                We also get to know a couple new characters, Amelia and Philippe.  I enjoyed getting to know these different characters as they brought a sense of levity to some rather darker type of mood.  This is especially true of Philippe.  He was rather charming in his own way, such a scandalous flirt in a very outrageous and fun way only some can pull off.  Amelia on the other hand brings a different level to the story with her upbringing and with her skill in mechanics.  She isn’t just about magic but machines and the way the two types can combine is rather inventive.  

               The story really keeps you going and guessing from page one until the end.  I have lots of questions and some serious need to hear more after some revelations that we uncovered.  Seriously I am so not okay with certain things they made my eyes get all watery and I need them fixed ASAP!  Plus there is a whole new kind of magic happening that is just aching to be explored further and I can’t wait to see how it plays into the next story.  I already have the next book three Cherished on pre-order!  So I highly recommend getting caught up in this story that is fast paced and filled to the brim with all the good things you want in a story from interesting and unique characters and plot to magic battles, romance, and world building including a masked ball! Yes I love masked balls!  

                Until next time…