Monday, 10 December 2018

Unmask Me If You Can - Book Review by Voodoo Bride

Unmask Me If You Can (The Survivors #4)
by Shana Galen

What is it about:
This masked lord...

Lord Jasper, younger son of a duke, suffered horrible burns fighting in the Napoleonic Wars. He wears a mask to hide his face from the stares and screams and finds comfort in the shadows. Jasper is an exceptional bounty hunter, so when a woman summons him to her deathbed and asks him to find her runaway daughter before she passes away, he doesn't refuse. Jasper is close to his quarry when he's knifed by an assailant. Imagine his surprise when he regains consciousness in the arms of the woman he seeks. Except she's not at all what he expected.

Is not the only one with scars.

On a remote cliff on the sea, Olivia Carlisle calls her five-year-old son in from an approaching storm. But the little boy is more interested in the man he's found on the trail to their hidden cottage. Olivia fears men and wants nothing more than to leave the injured man where she found him. But his knife wound is severe, and with the approaching storm, she knows leaving him will condemn him to death. As Jasper begins to heal, Olivia acknowledges her attraction to him, even though such emotions terrify her almost as much as returning to London. Jasper must convince her that her only chance at safety is to challenge the man who pursues her. They must travel into the lion's den—he to face his vulnerability and she to face her worst fears.

What did Voodoo Bride think of it:
I always enjoy Shana Galen's Historical Romances, so when I was offered a review copy of this book I jumped on it.

I encountered Jasper in An Affair with a Spare and he was a very intriguing character. So I was happy to discover he is the hero in this book. He is scarred by the war, both physically and mentally, although he isn't really aware of the last. He's become jaded, although he keep to his strong code of honor.

And then there's Olivia. She is scarred mentally as well. She had enough sense to run away from those that would hurt her and her son, but she's so busy with protecting her son from harm, she doesn't really realize how lonely she is.

The first half of the book Jasper and Olivia get to know each other and both have to get over some of their deepest fears. I loved seeing the both of them grow and start to trust each other. Olivia's son was a nice addition. I usually don't care for children in romances, but Richard is a cute and inquisitive kid.

The second half of the book there is more suspense and danger for the three of them. I rooted for Jasper and Olivia to realize what they felt for each other and for them to be able to face their demons and beat them. I couldn't put the book down. I had to see them overcome their problems and find their happy end.

All in all this is a delightful and suspenseful romance and you bet it won't be the last book by Shana Galen I'll read.

Why should you read it:
It's a delightful Historical Romance

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Friday, 7 December 2018

Three Mages and a Margarita - Book Review

Three Mages and a Margarita (The Guild Codex: Spellbound #1)
by Annette Marie

What is it about:
Broke, almost homeless, and recently fired. Those are my official reasons for answering a wanted ad for a skeevy-looking bartender gig.

It went downhill the moment they asked me to do a trial shift instead of an interview — to see if I'd mesh with their "special" clientele. I think that part went great. Their customers were complete dickheads, and I was an asshole right back. That's the definition of fitting in, right?

I expected to get thrown out on my ass. Instead, they… offered me the job?

It turns out this place isn't a bar. It's a guild. And the three cocky guys I drenched with a margarita during my trial? Yeah, they were mages. Either I'm exactly the kind of takes-no-shit bartender this guild needs, or there's a good reason no one else wants to work here.

So what's a broke girl to do? Take the job, of course — with a pay raise.

Note: The three mages are definitely sexy, but this series isn't a reverse harem. It's 100% fun, sassy, fast-paced urban fantasy.

Tori has no problem getting herself into trouble in every book in the Guild Codex series, but each one is a complete adventure—no cliffhanger endings.

What did I think of it:
This is a really fun book!

I was hooked from the start and couldn't stop reading: I had to know what trouble Tori would get herself into next.

The worldbuilding was fun and intriguing and I loved Annette Marie's writing style.

Tori is fun, has a very short fuse, and is impulsive, but it's these last two things that not only get her in trouble, but also out of them a couple of times. I was rooting for her all the way through.

And the three mages! Wow. You know how I usually feel about love triangles, menages and everything, but here I was actually a little disappointed this isn't a reverse harem, because I loved all three of the male lead characters in this book and want lots and lots more of them. I seriously hope they are recurring characters in the series.

The suspense/action storyline starts up pretty far into the book, but I wasn't bored even one second before things got dicey. When the action does start up things get even more interesting and I was on the edge of my seat, eager to see how things would turn out.

All in all a great read, and you bet I'll get my greedy trotters on the next book.

Why should you read it:
It's a really cool Urban Fantasy read.

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Thursday, 6 December 2018

Teasing on a Thursday - Scarlet

Cinder staggered against the wall, dizzy. "Oh stars-is he dead?"

(page ??, Scarlet by Marissa Meyer
Forgot to check the page before closing the book)

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Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following: - Grab your current read - Open to a random page - Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!) - Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Wednesday, 5 December 2018

The Rains - Book Review

The Rains (Rains #1)
by Gregg Hurwitz

What is it about:
It's never really been my thing to be the brave one - that's always been my older brother Patrick - but something world-changing is happening in our small town of Creek's Cause. Parasites have infected everyone over the age of eighteen, making them violent, and if they even sniff a kid they either bash our brains in or take us back to their creepy lair.

We're trapped at the school with the other remaining survivors, including Patrick's girlfriend Alex, and we don't know how long we'll last. The school is surrounded by infected adults, and we're sure that there is something else out there, something controlling the people that used to be our parents, our guardians.

But here's the real problem, Patrick is turning eighteen in a few days, so it's up to me - Chance Rain - to find a way to save him. And maybe, just maybe if we survive the next few weeks then we can help save humanity.

What did I think of it:
This is a cool action-packed read.

The story isn't that logical or suspenseful: You just know that Chance's older brother won't die until at least late in the book if at all, so some of the scenes that were meant to be dicey didn't get my anxiety for their safety going I will confess. But I didn't much mind. I picked this book up to be entertained by teens fighting against zombie-like adults and that is exactly what I got.

There is of course some teen angsty love stuff going on, teens getting in each others face and posturing for dominance, and other things like that, but those things only added to the entertainment value of this book.

All in all a great read if you're looking for a fast paced and enjoyable zombie read (even though they are not called zombies). I'll read the next book soon.

Why should you read it:
It's a very entertaining YA read.

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Tuesday, 4 December 2018

Valiant - Release Day Book Review (repost)

by Merrie Destefano

What is it about:
The Valiant was supposed to save us. Instead, it triggered the end of the world.

Earth is in shambles. Everyone, even the poorest among us, invested in the Valiant’s space mining mission in the hopes we’d be saved from ourselves. But the second the ship leaves Earth’s atmosphere, our fate is sealed. The alien invasion begins. They pour into cities around the world through time portals, possessing humans, forcing us to kill one another.

And for whatever reason, my brother is their number one target.

Now the fate of the world lies in the hands of me, a seventeen-year-old girl, but with the help of my best friend, Justin―who’s suddenly starting to feel like more―maybe if we save my brother, we can save us all...

What did I think of it:
You can bet I pre-ordered this book after seeing the cover and reading the blurb. Then I was offered an Advance Reader Copy, and I just couldn't say no to the chance to read it early.

The book begins with a prologue to explain the situation and what is at stake: After the launch of the Valiant aliens attack earth and for some reason they're particularly interested in Sara's brother Gabe. Only minutes into the invasion he is killed. Then Sara meets an alien who sends her back in time and tells her it is important to keep Gabe alive if humanity is to survive.

And that's where the story really kicks off: Launch of the Valiant is near, Sara knows what's coming, and knows she has to keep her brother alive.

I was immediately drawn into the story which is a thrill ride of dangerous situations for Sara and her friends. As they barely escape one attack, the next danger is already waiting for them. This book is about 400 pages long, but with all the action it felt much shorter. I couldn't put it down, I had to know what would happen next, and if Sara and her friends manage to keep Gabe alive and out of the hands of the aliens.

In between the fighting, fleeing, and planning their next move Sara starts to realize she might be feeling more than friendship for her best friend Justin. This storyline takes second place (as it should in such a dangerous situation), but is very sweet. I also liked Sara's relationship with her friend Natalie which is one of mutual support. During their adventures they also meet other people, but when the aliens can take over a human body, who can you really trust?

All in all this is a really awesome, action-packed read, with twists and turns I didn't see coming and that kept me on the edge of my seat.

The book ends in a way that makes it work as a standalone, but it also made me more than eager for more. You bet this book ends up on my keeper shelves once my print copy arrives.

Why should you read it:
It's a thrilling and suspenseful YA SciFi read.

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Monday, 3 December 2018

Cinder - Book Review

Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles #1)
by Marissa Meyer

What is it about:
Sixteen-year-old Cinder is considered a technological mistake by most of society and a burden by her stepmother. Being cyborg does have its benefits, though: Cinder's brain interference has given her an uncanny ability to fix things (robots, hovers, her own malfunctioning parts), making her the best mechanic in New Beijing. This reputation brings Prince Kai himself to her weekly market booth, needing her to repair a broken android before the annual ball. He jokingly calls it "a matter of national security," but Cinder suspects it's more serious than he's letting on.

Although eager to impress the prince, Cinder's intentions are derailed when her younger stepsister, and only human friend, is infected with the fatal plague that's been devastating Earth for a decade. Blaming Cinder for her daughter's illness, Cinder's stepmother volunteers her body for plague research, an "honor" that no one has survived.

But it doesn't take long for the scientists to discover something unusual about their new guinea pig. Something others would kill for.

What did I think of it:
I read this book in 2012 and really enjoyed it, but because I had borrowed it from a friend I never got to reading the other books as I wanted to own the first book before buying more books in the series. Recently I decided to buy and reread this book and finally continue reading the rest of the series.

And this book is just as enjoyable and entertaining as I remembered.

I remembered more from this book than other recent rereads, but still there were things happening in the story I didn't remember. My previous review mentioned that it was easy to see certain things coming, and that was true now as well, although some things might have secretly lingered in my brain. Even so, this is a great read and I was kept entertained from start to finish. I really like how Meyer tells her own story using elements from the original fairytale, but making them her own. I love the characters she created and was rooting for Cinder and prince Kai.

The ending didn't feel as cliffhangery as the first time, but that might be because I have the next book waiting for me already: I was lucky enough to receive a gift card which I used to get the next three books. It won't take another 6 years before I think about continuing this series.

Why should you read it:
It's a really cool SF re-imagining of Cinderella

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Friday, 30 November 2018

Skyward - Book Review

Skyward (Skyward #1)
by Brandon Sanderson

What is it about:
Spensa's world has been under attack for hundreds of years. An alien race called the Krell leads onslaught after onslaught from the sky in a never-ending campaign to destroy humankind. Humanity's only defense is to take to their ships and combat the Krell. Pilots are the heroes of what's left of the human race.

Becoming a pilot has always been Spensa's dream. Since she was a little girl, she has imagined soaring above the earth and proving her bravery. But her fate is intertwined with that of her father--a pilot himself who was killed years ago when he abruptly deserted his team, leaving Spensa's chances of attending Flight School at slim to none.

No one will let Spensa forget what her father did, but she is determined to fly. And the Krell just made that a possibility. They've doubled their fleet, which will make Spensa's world twice as deadly . . . but just might take her skyward.

What did I think of it:
This book was even better than I hoped.

It's not mentioned in the above blurb, but other blurbs, like the one on Goodreads mention Spensa finds a spaceship that is sentient. People talked so much about the spaceship that I expected that it would be the focus of the story. But it is not, luckily enough.

Yes, the spaceship certainly plays a big role, but Spensa's attempts to become a pilot, and to discover the truth about her father and the Krell are just as important if not even more so. All these storylines together, the worldbuilding, and the characters grabbed me from the start, and I read the book in a single day. I just couldn't put it down.

I liked Spensa, even though she is reckless and rash at times. She is passionate, stubborn, and loyal. I rooted for her to succeed. There were some really interesting and cool other characters as well, but Sanderson isn't afraid to sacrifice characters for the good of the story, so I lost a few of my favorites. There is the start of something that might become a romance, I'm curious to see how it will develop.

All in all this is a really cool SciFi read, and you ca bet I'll get my greedy trotters on the next book once it releases. In the mean time I'll have to investigate Sanderson's Fantasy books.

Why should you read it:
It's an awesome YA SF read.

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