Tuesday 31 December 2019

On this last day of 2019 I wanted to look back on my reading and my bookish adventures.

2019 was the year my owner and I traveled to Dublin to attend Worldcon, and to meet Jeffe Kennedy. The first picture in this post is of me and my owner enjoying our first evening in Dublin, the second picture is me posing for a picture together with Jeffe Kennedy and Kelly Robson.

We had such a great time in Dublin, sightseeing with Jeffe and David, meeting other authors, and attending panels. A complete recap can be found on my other blog. You can bet that I want to go to other cons in the future, even though I retired from all my other traveling this year.

On to my reading.

I set myself two challenges this year: try to finish the Charley Davidson series by DArynda Jones and to read at least one book each month that had been lingering on my shelves for a more than a few months.

I didn't succeed in finishing the Charley Davidson series, but I did read 5 books in this series this year, and have 4 more to go. I'll definitely will finish this series in 2020.

As for Orphaned books, I didn't read one every month, but I had months were I read more than one, bringing my total of Orphans Read at 17 for 2019 (two of those were on my shelves for 6 years). I'll continue to try to get more older books read next year.

My favorite reads of 2019

I have read so many amazing books in 2019, that I made a list of my favorite book for each month (in two cases I really couldn't decide and have more than one)

How to Save an Undead Life - Hailey Edwards

Phoenix Falling – Laura Bickle

The Queen's Resistance – Rebecca Ross

Vicious - V.E. Schwab

Every Heart a Doorway – Seanan McGuire
The Orchid Throne – Jeffe Kennedy
The Only Harmless Great Thing – Brooke Bolander

Chaos Choreography – Seanan McGuire

American Hippo – Sarah Gailey

Empire of Sand – Tasha Suri

Magic for Liars – Sarah Gailey
Middlegame – Seanan McGuire
Gamechanger – L.X. Beckett

Gideon the Ninth – Tamsyn Muir

The Alchemist and an Amaretto – Annette Marie

Break the Bodies, Haunt the Bones – Micah Dean Hicks

All in all my reading year was great and I will continue to read and review in 2020.

That leaves me with wishing you all "Many good books for 2020, and a very happy New Year!"

Friday 27 December 2019

Nightflyers - Book Review

by George R.R. Martin

What is it about:
When a scientific expedition is launched to study a mysterious alien race, the only ship available is the Nightflyer, a fully autonomous vessel manned by a single human. But Captain Royd Eris remains locked away, interacting with his passengers only as a disembodied voice--or a projected hologram no more substantial than a ghost.

Yet that's not the only reason the ship seems haunted. The team's telepath, Thale Lasamer, senses another presence aboard the Nightflyer--something dangerous, volatile, and alien. Captain Eris claims to know nothing about the elusive intruder, and when someone, or something, begins killing off the expedition's members, he's unable--or unwilling--to stem the bloody tide.

Only Melantha Jhirl, a genetically enhanced outcast with greater strength, stamina, and intelligence than other humans, has a chance of solving the mystery--and stopping the malevolent being that's wiping out her shipmates.

But first she has to keep herself alive.

What did I think of it:
I have very much enjoyed the HBO series A Game of Thrones, but I didn't feel compelled to read Martin's books. They're huge, and there are so many other books I want to read. But then I ran into this SF novella and I could not resist!

And this is such a cool story!

The plot isn't all that exciting, but it's Martin's writing, and the way he sets mood and atmosphere that made me totally invested and kept me reading. I raced through this story , enjoying the drama and mystery, curious to see who would survive and who'd die and how.

Next to this murder mystery in space I also enjoyed the storyline of the mysterious alien race the scientists are seeking. What are these aliens, are they related to the trouble, and will they appear?

All in all a very enjoyable SF novella. I might have to investigate the Netflix series that was based on this novella.

Why should you read it:

It's a cool SF novella.

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Thursday 26 December 2019

The Migration - Book Review

The Migration
by Helen Marshall

What is it about:
When I was younger I didn't know a thing about death. I thought it meant stillness, a body gone limp. A marionette with its strings cut. Death was like a long vacation--a going away.

Storms and flooding are worsening around the world, and a mysterious immune disorder has begun to afflict the young. Sophie Perella is about to begin her senior year of high school in Toronto when her little sister, Kira, is diagnosed. Their parents' marriage falters under the strain, and Sophie's mother takes the girls to Oxford, England, to live with their Aunt Irene.

An Oxford University professor and historical epidemiologist obsessed with relics of the Black Death, Irene works with a centre that specializes in treating people with the illness. She is a friend to Sophie, and offers a window into a strange and ancient history of human plague and recovery. Sophie just wants to understand what's happening now; but as mortality rates climb, and reports emerge of bodily tremors in the deceased, it becomes clear there is nothing normal about this condition--and that the dead aren't staying dead.

When Kira succumbs, Sophie faces an unimaginable choice: let go of the sister she knows, or take action to embrace something terrifying and new.

Tender and chilling, unsettling and hopeful, The Migration is a story of a young woman's dawning awareness of mortality and the power of the human heart to thrive in cataclysmic circumstances.

What did I think of it:
You know me: If I think there might be zombies in a story I want to give it a try.

It turns out that this isn't the zombie book I expected, but I was not disappointed. This story is set in the near future and is partly about family and dealing with grief and the unknown, partly about our fear for that which is different, and partly about the threat of climate change.

I know that sounds like a lot to tackle in one story, but Marshall makes it work without this book turning into a morality lesson. Instead it's a gripping and emotional story about a teen who is trying to deal with change and loss. I was hooked from the start and eager to find out what was going on and what choices Sophie would make.

Near the end it got a bit over the top, but again Marshall made it work. All in all a very satisfying read.

Why should you read it:
It's a beautiful Near Future read.

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Tuesday 24 December 2019

Teaser Tuesdays - Break the Bodies, Haunt the Bones

"He said he's going to call you," Jane squeezed his shoulder. "I think you did something really bad this time. Worse than the robot."

(page 26, Break the Bodies, Haunt the Bones by Micah Dean Hicks)

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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!

Monday 23 December 2019

All I Want For Christmas Is A Werewolf - Book Review

All I Want For Christmas Is A Werewolf
by Liana Brooks

What is it about:
Del hates Christmas. As a child, she spent too many Decembers on the streets after her parents abandoned her. As an adult, the enforced family focus, the clients who see the holidays as an excuse to get gropey, and the mistletoe her well-meaning colleague Maureen hung over her work desk just seals the deal: December sucks.

If only it could stay Halloween for a couple of months instead. Del loves the excuse to slay monsters, the spooky atmosphere—and of course, the werewolves. Because everyone knows werewolves make the best lovers... Pity they’re not real.

When Maureen conjures up a list of eligible bachelors for the holidays and insists Del take her pick, Del does the only reasonable thing: she lies. And when nosy office Grinch Rafael Kane asks who the lucky fellow is, Del announces it to the whole office: she's getting a dog.

So now, the first item on Del’s holiday to-do list? Find a dog. Fast. Because if she doesn’t, nothing will protect her from Maureen’s list of Miami bachelor rejects.

A charming, sensual romance for everyone who believes in found families, happily ever after—and werewolves.

What did I think of it:
Looking for a last minute Christmas Romance? Look no further!

This Paranormal Christmas Romance is cute, fluffy, and fun!

I fell in love with Del from the start (and not just because she loves zombies and Zombies, Run!) and rooted for her to get on top of things and to get her Happy Christmas Ever After.

I also really liked Maureen, even with her meddling and gossiping, and let's not forget Rafael of course. He's totally awesome.

At about 180 pages this is a quick and very enjoyable read that will get you in the mood for Christmas. You bet I'll reread and that I'll read more by Brooks.

Why should you read it:
It's a cute and fun Paranormal Christmas Romance.

buy from amazon

Thursday 19 December 2019

Transcendent 4 - Book Review

Transcendent 4: The Year's Best Transgender Speculative Fiction
assembled by Bogi Takács

What is it about:
A non-binary teenager may be from a small town but they remember at least a dozen past lives; a young trans woman auditions as an anime voice actor while the world is ending; in a future of constant change and transformation, one person is hesitant to undergo the next metamorphosis; a trans man comes back home to discover his parents have added to the household an android that has his deadface installed. Award-winning editor Bogi Takács has assembled a stellar line-up of stories that explore the frontiers of gender - using the imaginative tools of speculative fiction.

What did I think of it:
This is a very cool anthology with a myriad of stories to capture your imagination and to make you think.

In front of the book there are trigger warnings with each story, so people can skip the stories that would be too confronting or emotional.

The stories themselves range from magical realism to straight out SF. There are those that explore possible futures, family relationships, love, friendship, etc. Some of the stories made me cry, others made me angry, others offered hope.

All in all this is an anthology that will stay with you long after you've finished it. I can recommend it to everyone who loves speculative fiction and anyone looking for a diverse read.

Why should you read it:
It's a really cool SF anthology.

buy from Amazon

Wednesday 18 December 2019

Spirits That Walk in Shadow - Book Review

Spirits That Walk in Shadow (Chapel Hollow #3)
by Nina Kiriki Hoffman

What is it about:
Roommates Jaimie Locke and Kim Calloway are each looking to find a new life at college. It’s Jaimie’s first time Outside—away from her large, complicated family and their magical traditions—and she wants to learn what nonmagical life is like. Kim is anxious to escape the depression that’s been dragging her down since last year so she can make new friends and create the art she loves.

But almost as soon as they unpack, Jaimie realizes that Kim’s depression is different from normal sadness. Something outside of Kim is literally forcing her to be depressed, pursuing and draining her. Just like that, the two girls—along with Jaime’s cousins and a Presence named Rugee—try to capture and rout the creature that is following Kim.

No one said that college would be easy....

What did I think of it:
Did I buy this book because of that gorgeous cover by Daniel Dos Santos? You bet!
(And apparently I was very lucky amazon.de still had a copy for a normal price)

And I'm so glad my shallow cover love let me buy this book, because it is such a cool story!

The main story is simple enough and not that difficult to figure out. I was way ahead of Kim and Jaimie. It's the characters, the worldbuilding, and writing that totally drew me in and kept me reading. I loved both Kim and Jaimie and how both of them looked at the world. Then more characters got introduced and I loved most of those as well.

This book is third in a series, but I can't say I felt like missing out. The other two books seem to be about other characters, who are related to Jaimie, and after reading this book I will try to get hold of the other two books as well. And I will absolutely investigate what other books Nina Kiriki Hoffman has written.

Why should you read it:
It's a well written and cool UF read.

buy from Amazon

Tuesday 17 December 2019

The Dirt on Ninth Grave - Book Review

The Dirt on Ninth Grave (Charley Davidson #9)
by Darynda Jones

What is it about:
Charley Davidson is living in New York City as Jane Doe, a girl with no memory of who she is or where she came from. So when she begins to realize she can see dead people, she’s more than a bit taken aback. Strangers who enter the diner where she works seem to know things about her…

Then she is confronted by a man who claims to have been sent to kill her. Sent by the darkest force in the universe. An enemy that will not stop until she is dead. Thankfully, she has a Rottweiler. And the diner’s devastatingly handsome fry cook, who vows to protect her even though he seems to be lying with every breath he takes. But in the face of such grave danger, who can Jane/Charley/whoever she is trust? She will find the truth even if it kills her… or the fry cook. Either way…

What did I think of it:
The above description of this book isn't very accurate I must say. There are lots of things going on, of which sthe things mentioned are only a small part.

Anyway: I had fun with this book.

I must say I didn't totally understand why those who know Charley keep up the pretense and Charley in the dark, but apart from that this is yet another fun and action filled adventure, full of Charley snark, Cookie goofiness, and Reyes scorchingness (yeah, I know it's not an actual word). I was hooked from the start and enjoying the ride.

There were some obvious things, some surprises, and lots of the silly goodness I've come to expect of this series. All in all a satisfying read, and I'll pick up the next book soon.

Why should you read it:
It's a fun and snarky UF read.

buy from bookdepository

Monday 16 December 2019

Teasing on a Monday - Nightflyers

I started on this yesterday and I am very much enjoying it so far.

And we follow, we follow. Through the dark gulfs where no one goes, through the emptiness, through the silence that goes on and on, my Nightflyer and I give chase.

(page 4, Nightflyers by George R.R. Martin)

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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!

Friday 13 December 2019

Catching Moonlight - Book Review

Catching Moonlight (The Sunrise Prophecy #2)
by Emily Mah

What is it about:
Corban Alexander has a dark side, and ever since a chance encounter with Liana Linacre, a girl he was supposed to protect, it's darker and more addictive than ever. Every minute of every hour of every day he fights to resist succumbing to his worst instincts. If he doesn't, he will fall, and gain the power to scourge and wreak havoc upon humanity, feeding off their pain. It would take a legion of angels to stop him.

So when he learns that Liana needs help once again, he knows he is the last person to provide it. The problem is, no one else is willing.

Corban must return to the side of the girl he loves, and pray that he is strong enough to save both her and himself.

What did I think of it:
This is a cool and suspenseful read.

The book starts about four years after the events in book one, taking this series in NA territory. The first book in this series was told from Liana's viewpoint. In this book we get to see things from Corban's point of view.

No sooner have Liana and Corban met up again or things get dicey. Someone wants Liana dead and isn't very subtle about it. Corban should bring Liana to safety, but Liana has different plans.

I loved seeing that my wishes came true: Liana's best friends were back and more involved in what is going on. I rooted for all of them to survive. The relationship between Liana and Corban is a complex one. Corban does have feelings for her, which as an angel he shouldn't have, and it looks like Liana might have moved on. On top of that Corban is drawn to negative emotions. If Liana's enemy doesn't kill them, Corban just might do it by accident.

I was invested from the start and kept reading to find out where things would lead. The ending is satisfying, but also left me eager for the next book. So you bet I'll read it soon.

Why should you read it:
It's a cool Paranormal read.

Buy from amazon

Wednesday 11 December 2019

I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter - Book Review

I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter
by Erika L. Sánchez

What is it about:
Perfect Mexican daughters do not go away to college. And they do not move out of their parents’ house after high school graduation. Perfect Mexican daughters never abandon their family.

But Julia is not your perfect Mexican daughter. That was Olga’s role.

Then a tragic accident on the busiest street in Chicago leaves Olga dead and Julia left behind to reassemble the shattered pieces of her family. And no one seems to acknowledge that Julia is broken, too. Instead, her mother seems to channel her grief into pointing out every possible way Julia has failed.

But it’s not long before Julia discovers that Olga might not have been as perfect as everyone thought. With the help of her best friend Lorena, and her first kiss, first love, first everything boyfriend Connor, Julia is determined to find out. Was Olga really what she seemed? Or was there more to her sister’s story? And either way, how can Julia even attempt to live up to a seemingly impossible ideal?

What did I think of it:
Did I enjoy this book?


Did I think this is a good book?


This is a difficult read. Going by the blurb I had expected this story to focus on finding out who Olga was, instead it is a story about loss, grief, and trying to find your place in life even when the odds are against you. It was emotional, heartbreaking, confrontational, and with a quiet beauty, hinting that there might be hope.

All in all not a book I'll easily reread, but it is a beautiful read.

Why should you read it:
It's a beautiful and emotional YA read.

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Tuesday 10 December 2019

Teaser Tuesdays - Transcendent 4

After the scandal and the election some people said it's the memories that are gone, cauterized by the pulse of this evil, wild device. But ze wonders if maybe just the pathways are gone, and it can rebuild them, like a new bridge, or a portal.

(28% into Transcendent 4: The Year's Best Transgender Speculative Fiction - from Therapeutic Memory Reversal by Everett Maroon)

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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!

Monday 9 December 2019

Salvaged - Book Review

by Madeleine Roux

What is it about:
In this dark science fiction thriller, a young woman must confront her past so the human race will have a future.

Rosalyn Devar is on the run from her famous family, the bioengineering job she's come to hate, and her messed-up life. She's run all the way to outer space, where she's taken a position as a "space janitor," cleaning up ill-fated research expeditions. But no matter how far she goes, Rosalyn can't escape herself. After too many mistakes on the job, she's given one last chance: take care of salvaging the Brigantine, a research vessel that has gone dark, with all crew aboard thought dead.

But the Brigantine's crew are very much alive--if not entirely human. Now Rosalyn is trapped on board, alone with a crew infected by a mysterious parasitic alien. The captain, Edison Aries, seems to still maintain some control over himself and the crew, but he won't be able to keep fighting much longer. Rosalyn and Edison must find a way to stop the parasite's onslaught...or it may take over the entire human race.

What did I think of it:
This is a very entertaining read.

I had heard it's scary and creepy, and although there was indeed a nice creep factor at times, it wasn't all that scary to me. But I have to warn you: It seems I'm not easily scared by books.

The viewpoint switches between several characters, and at times this is a strength, but it also reduced the suspense for me. I think this book could have been stronger with less viewpoints. Still I was interested from the start and flew through the book to see where the story would lead to.

I must say my favorite character wasn't Rosalyn or Edison, but rather one of the other crew members aboard the Brigantine. I felt myself rooting for that character and it made me more invested in Rosalyn finding a solution. The ending is not a cliffhanger, but does leave room for Roux to create a sequel.

All in all this is a fun and entertaining read. I'll most definitely keep an eye out for more by Roux.

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

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Tuesday 3 December 2019

Teaser Tuesdays - I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter

Part of me is intrigued by the party, but the other part of me doesn't want to spend a night hanging out with Juanga. He hasn't reached arch-nemesis status, but I certainly don't want to be friends.

(page 160, I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter by Erika L. Sanchez)

buy from bookdepository


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!

Monday 2 December 2019

Chasing Sunrise - Book Review

Chasing Sunrise (The Sunrise Prophecy #1)
by Emily Mah

What is it about:
Liana Linacre always thought of herself as the boring good girl, because that's what she was before an alluring vampire named Evan came to her window. What begins as her fantasy romance ends with a curse that threatens her life and that of everyone she loves. No longer the pampered prep school student, she becomes an orphan on the run from dark forces that want her soul.

This lands her in Taos, New Mexico, a quirky artist colony and the home of her even quirkier Aunt Cassie, who is willing to give her a place to stay, but refuses to be an adult role model. Left on her own in a public high school serving a low income area, Liana captures the attention of the mysterious Corban Alexander. He makes it clear right away, he wants her gone, but that isn't an option for her.

The only way for Liana to survive is to outsmart the ancient evil that wants her dead.

Corban must decide if he can forgive a girl who made the one mistake he believes is unforgivable.

Only if they fight together together can they prevail in an age-old fight that evil has always won.

What did I think of it:
This is a really fun Paranormal read.

Mah gives a really original spin to the vampire mythology and I was intrigued from the start. Liana is both strong and vulnerable. Things are happening with her she can't totally understand, and on top of that she is thrown in a new life at a public school after only attending private boarding schools. It was interesting to see her adapt and realize how privileged she has been.

Her brush with a vampire lands her in hot water with Corban, a vampire hunter with secrets of his own. I really liked their interaction and was eager to find out more about him.

I loved seeing Liana make friends and even though her two new friends have a minor role in this book I am looking forward to see this friendship develop and hope her friends will have a bigger role in the next books in this series. I also enjoyed getting to know Taos and the people who live there.

All in all this is a really cool read and you bet I'll be reading the other two books in this trilogy as well.

Why should you read it:
It's a cool Paranormal YA/NA

Buy from amazon

Friday 29 November 2019

On McPig's Radar - The Deep

This sounds like a book that my Titanic loving heart needs as soon as it releases!

The Deep
by Alma Katsu

Someone, or something, is haunting the Titanic.

Deaths and disappearances have plagued the vast liner from the moment she began her maiden voyage on 10 April 1912. Four days later, caught in what feels like an eerie, unsettling twilight zone, some passengers - including millionaire Madeleine Astor and maid Annie Hebbley - are convinced that something sinister is afoot. And then disaster strikes.

Four years later and the world is at war. Having survived that fateful night, Annie is now a nurse on board the Titanic's sister ship, the Britannic, now refitted as a hospital ship. And she is about to realise that those demons from her past and the terrors of that doomed voyage have not finished with her yet . . .

Bringing together Faustian pacts, the occult, tales of sirens and selkies with themes of guilt and revenge, desire and destiny, The Deep offers a thrilling, tantalizing twist on one of the world's most famous tragedies.

Expected publication: March 5th 2020
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Thursday 28 November 2019

Dead Before Dying - Get it Now for Free!!!

The Dead Before Dying e-book is free until the end of the month. So go get this awesome book now!

Maureen is totally amazing!

Dead Before Dying (Shadow Valley Manor #1)
by Kerry Schafer

Sidelined by an on the job injury, veteran paranormal investigator Maureen Keslyn reluctantly accepts an assignment at Shadow Valley Manor, an upscale retirement facility where someone—or something—is picking off residents and staff at a grisly clip.

With her resources dwindling one death at a time and unnatural forces on the loose, Maureen’s experience fighting the supernatural provides her only hope to destroy a clever and powerful evil before everybody in the manor—and the town—winds up dead. Together with a ragtag team that includes the local sheriff, the undertaker's daughter, and the facility cook whose knife skills in the kitchen could prove deadly out of it--Maureen is on a mission to bring rest to the weary, and peace to the dead...

Get it from Amazon

This alert is brought to you by a piggy who has the previous paperback, the e-book, and will get his greedy trotters on the new paperback!

Monday 25 November 2019

The Bridge Kingdom - Book Review (repost)

The Bridge Kingdom is now also available in print, so I got my trotters on the paperback and did a reread. Here's a repost of my audio book review, as the book is still just as awesome!

The Bridge Kingdom (The Bridge Kingdom #1)
by Danielle L. Jensen

What is it about:
What if you fell in love with the one person you'd sworn to destroy?

Lara has only one thought for her husband on their wedding day: I will bring your kingdom to its knees. A princess trained from childhood to be a lethal spy, Lara knows that the Bridge Kingdom represents both legendary evil - and legendary promise. The only route through a storm-ravaged world, the Bridge Kingdom controls all trade and travel between lands, allowing its ruler to enrich himself and deprive his enemies, including Lara's homeland. So when she is sent as a bride under the guise of fulfilling a treaty of peace, Lara is prepared to do whatever it takes to fracture the defenses of the impenetrable Bridge Kingdom.

But as she infiltrates her new home - a lush paradise surrounded by tempest seas - and comes to know her new husband, Aren, Lara begins to question where the true evil resides. Around her, she sees a kingdom fighting for survival, and in Aren, a man fiercely protective of his people. As her mission drives her to deeper understanding of the fight to possess the bridge, Lara finds the simmering attraction between her and Aren impossible to ignore.

Her goal nearly within reach, Lara will have to decide her own fate: Will she be the destroyer of a king or the savior of her people?

What did I think of it:
Apart from the occasional short story, I'm not really an audio book listener/reader. I will confess I get easily bored, and on top of that the narrators take so much longer reading it to me, than I can read it myself. Also: i'm totally not a multi-tasker: there's only so much I can do while listening to a story. Therefor I was all set to wait for this book to be released in print, but I couldn't resist joining a giveaway for the Audible version. And I won! So I decided to give the audio book a chance, because it sounded like my kind of story.

And this story is so good I actually finished the audio book! I will confess that during the first few chapters I wondered if I would stick it out. The narrators at times really annoyed me with how they did the voices. I mean: why would an excellent spy master sound like a velvety snake ready to poison you. Really: he sounded like you should count all your digits after just talking with him.

But narration aside I was soon caught up in the story. I wanted to know what would happen to Lara and Aren. I did crank up the speed of the narration (almost 12 hours normal speed) slowly to first x1.5, to finally x2 because I just couldn't wait the whole 12 hours to find out how this story would end, it was that good.

There were some things that were predictable, but much more that took me totally by surprise. Lara is a cool heroine, she is capable, smart, and can think on her feet, but it's also clear her education left out some important things, and what she has in learned wisdom, she lacks in actual street smarts. As she slowly gets to know her new husband and his country she starts to question everything she learned, and she starts to fall for his charm and apparent kindness. The attraction between them is clear, but Lara's secrets, and Aren's protectiveness toward his country make the romance between them slow burning, but good.

As Lara uncovers both truths and lies, and her feelings for Aren grow, she will have to decide if she will do what her father asked her, or if she will switch alliances. Here I could see certain things coming, and I wanted to kick Lara at times. Still I rooted for her, and hoped things would turn out right.

And the ending!

Man, I need the second book in this duology! So you bet I'll get the print version of this book once it releases, to read at my own speed and to hug. I'll probably also totally cave and get the audio version of the sequel once it releases, because I need to know what will happen next.

If you're a fan of audio books I can totally recommend this to you!

Why should you read it:
It's a suspenseful and awesome Fantasy read/listen.

Buy from Amazon
Buy it from bookdepository

Friday 22 November 2019

Magic for Nothing - Book Review

Magic for Nothing (InCryptid #6)
by Seanan McGuire

What is it about:
As the youngest of the three Price children, Antimony is used to people not expecting much from her. She’s been happy playing roller derby and hanging out with her cousins, leaving the globe-trotting to her older siblings while she stays at home and tries to decide what she wants to do with her life. She always knew that one day, things would have to change. She didn’t think they’d change so fast.

Annie’s expectations keep getting shattered. She didn’t expect Verity to declare war on the Covenant of St. George on live television. She didn’t expect the Covenant to take her sister’s threat seriously. And she definitely didn’t expect to be packed off to London to infiltrate the Covenant from the inside…but as the only Price in her generation without a strong resemblance to the rest of the family, she’s the perfect choice to play spy. They need to know what’s coming. Their lives may depend on it.

But Annie has some secrets of her own, like the fact that she’s started setting things on fire when she touches them, and has no idea how to control it. Now she’s headed halfway around the world, into the den of the enemy, where blowing her cover could get her killed. She’s pretty sure things can’t get much worse.

Antimony Price is about to learn just how wrong it’s possible for one cryptozoologist to be.

What did I think of it:
Did I text a friend halfway through the book to ask her if I was rooting for the wrong guy yet again? Totally!

That said: I very much enjoyed this book even though I wasn't happy with the love interest and also not that happy with Antimony at times.

I loved learning a bit more about the Covenant of St. George, and about the carnival Annie has to infiltrate. The mice are also part of the story again, and where there are Aeslin mice you have a happy piggy!

Antimony did work on my nerves half the time, and the other half I cheered her on. She really needs to do some growing up in my opinion, and to stop blaming others for her own choices. But overall I could root for her and her allies, and I was eager to see where things would lead.

The ending, although not a cliffhanger, left me hungry for more, so I'll try to get my trotters on the next book soon.

Why should you read it:
It's a very fun and entertaining UF read.

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Wednesday 20 November 2019

Slaying Monsters for the Feeble - Book Review

Slaying Monsters for the Feeble (The Guild Codex: Demonized #2)
by Annette Marie

What is it about:
I'm bound to a demon.

For my entire life, I avoided magic at all costs. Now, I'm responsible for a demon who wields magic more powerful than the toughest mage or sorcerer.

Demons are evil.

That's what my textbooks say. That's what I see. He's ruthless, he's temperamental, he's cold. But he protects me without fail. I wonder if he's hiding a heart behind his hostility.

My demon is a monster.

Whether he's heartless or not, my contract with him is illegal and beyond dangerous. Together, we must find a way to return him to his own world before anyone discovers our secret. If that wasn't bad enough, I've come to realize something else:

My demon isn't the only monster I should be worried about.

What did I think of it:
So yes: I did go on a bit of a binge and read three books by Annette Marie in a row.

This second book in the Demonized series is just as much fun as the first.

Robin and her demon have to learn how they can work together. They have the same goal, but different views on how to reach it. And Robin is still trying to figure out how human Sylas is and if she can fully trust him and vice versa.

During their search for Robin's family grimoire they find more trouble than they had counted on, and soon Robin is once again trying to survive.

I really like the bond Robin and Sylas share, and loved learning more about both Sylas and the workings of the demon world. The story is suspenseful and took turns I didn't see coming. Some things are getting clear, new secrets pop up. I couldn't put this book down until I finished it.

I'm eager to read more in this series and world, so you bet I'll get my trotters on the next book Annette Marie releases in this setting.

Why should you read it:
It's a fun and cool UF read.

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Tuesday 19 November 2019

Teaser Tuesdays - Barely Bewitched

"It's not a good idea. We're like clothes that have been too long in the dryer. I don't want any static-cling shocks, you know?"
"That's where we differ. I like our static cling and the shocks that go with it."

(page 39/40, Barely Bewitched by Kimberly Frost)

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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!

Monday 18 November 2019

The Alchemist and an Amaretto - Book Review

The Alchemist and an Amaretto (The Guild Codex: Spellbound #5)
by Annette Marie

What is it about:
As a guild bartender, I can handle pretty much anything--mages, sorcerers, witches, the occasional demon. But show me anything family-related and I'd rather run for the hills. It doesn't even have to be my family.

So I have no idea why I thought spending the holidays with Aaron's mom and pop was a good idea.

Meeting his famous parents is already terrifying enough, but I've got a bigger problem. Students of his family's renowned mage academy are being attacked on the grounds--and somehow no one has seen a single assailant? Unexplained tracks litter the nearby woods, rumors of forbidden alchemy are circulating the campus...and Ezra has been acting strangely since we arrived.

Something deadly is brewing in the shadow of Sinclair Academy, and the longer we take to uncover it, the more dangerous it becomes. But no matter the risk, we'll protect the students.

And Aaron's parents too, I suppose. If we have to.

What did I think of it:
After finishing Taming Demons for Beginners I immediately picked up the next book in the Spellbound series.

And this was another book that kept me reading deep into the night.

Tori, her three mage friends, and Tori's alchemist friend Sin are spending Christmas at Aaron's parents academy, they think the worst thing they will encounter are Aaron's parents and some stuck up alumni, but they're wrong!

I loved the setting and the set up. It was cool to see a bit about where Aaron came from, and how he struggles to not slip back in patterns from his childhood. Then a group of students gets attacked and things go wrong in a rapid pace.

I was totally hooked and rooting for Tori to save the day. As she is trying to figure out who or what is behind the trouble, things are happen to Ezra that raise the stakes even more. I was at the edge of my seat to discover if all my favorite characters would survive.

This was yet another awesome adventure, and the end left me hungry for more. At the back of the book was a novella that introduced the reader to a new character who will get his own spin-off, and it set the stakes of the next Spellbound book as well.

Guess what I'll be getting my trotters on once released!

Why should you read it:
It's an awesome Urban Fantasy read.

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Friday 15 November 2019

Taming Demons for Beginners - Book Review

Taming Demons for Beginners (The Guild Codex: Demonized #1)
by Annette Marie

What is it about:
Rule one: Don't look at the demon.

When I arrived at my uncle's house, I expected my relatives to be like me—outcast sorcerers who don't practice magic. I was right about the sorcery, but wrong about everything else.

Rule two: Don't listen to the demon.

My uncle chose a far deadlier power. He calls creatures of darkness into our world, binds them into service contracts, and sells them to the highest bidder. And I'm supposed to act like I don't know how illegal and dangerous it is.

Rule three: Don't talk to the demon.

All I had to do was keep my nose out of it. Pretend I didn't find the summoning circle in the basement. Pretend I didn't notice the shadowy being trapped inside it. Pretend I didn't break the rules.

But I did, and now it's too late.

What did I think of it:
I love the Guild Codex: Spellbound series, so I had to try this spin-off from that series.

And this book is so much fun!

I really liked Robin: she's an introverted bookish young woman, who ends up in trouble because of her curiosity and kindheartedness. She binds herself to a demon without knowing the rules and will have to figure things out on the run, because soon all hell breaks loose.

The events in this book run alongside the events in book 4 of the Spellbound series, and it was fun to see where the stories overlap. But don't fear, new readers: this series is perfectly readable without having read the Spellbound series, as a good friend of mine can attest.

This book is just as fun and suspenseful as the books in the Spellbound series, but Robin is a very different character than Tori is, so she gets herself in trouble in new and creative ways. I was hooked from the start and couldn't put the book down until I finished it. You bet I ordered the next book right away!

Why should you read it:
It's a fun and suspenseful Urban Fantasy read.

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Wednesday 13 November 2019

Suspicious Minds - Book Review

Suspicious Minds (Stranger Things Novels #1)
by Gwenda Bond

What is it about:
A mysterious lab. A sinister scientist. A secret history. If you think you know the truth behind Eleven’s mother, prepare to have your mind turned Upside Down in this thrilling prequel to the hit show Stranger Things.

It’s the summer of 1969, and the shock of conflict reverberates through the youth of America, both at home and abroad. As a student at a quiet college campus in the heartland of Indiana, Terry Ives couldn’t be further from the front lines of Vietnam or the incendiary protests in Washington.

But the world is changing, and Terry isn’t content to watch from the sidelines. When word gets around about an important government experiment in the small town of Hawkins, she signs on as a test subject for the project, codenamed MKUltra. Unmarked vans, a remote lab deep in the woods, mind-altering substances administered by tightlipped researchers . . . and a mystery the young and restless Terry is determined to uncover.

But behind the walls of Hawkins National Laboratory—and the piercing gaze of its director, Dr. Martin Brenner—lurks a conspiracy greater than she could have ever imagined. To face it, she’ll need the help of her fellow test subjects, including one so mysterious the world doesn’t know she exists—a young girl with unexplainable, superhuman powers and a number instead of a name: 008.

Amid the rising tensions of the new decade, Terry Ives and Martin Brenner have begun a different kind of war—one where the human mind is the battlefield.

What did I think of it:
I really enjoyed the Stranger Things series on Netflix, so when I ran into this prequel novel I couldn't resist.

And this is a cool and suspenseful story even while knowing some of what the future will bring.

I was soon totally engrossed in the story and was rooting for Terry and her friends to figure out what was going on and to get out of this story alive. I especially liked Alice and wouldn't mind if she gets her own book.

I did think that Bond kept the story on the surface. There are emotional moments, but it doesn't go deep. The storytelling is more on the events than what people are feeling most of the time.

All in all I really enjoyed this story and might pick up more Stranger Things related books.

Why should you read it:
It's a cool read for Stranger Things fans.

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Tuesday 12 November 2019

Teaser Tuesdays - Slaying Monsters for the Feeble

My fingers closed around the warm disc, the center carved with the sigil of Zylas's house.
"We did it," I whispered, scarcely able to believe I was alive.

(page 132, Slaying Monsters for the Feeble by Annette Marie)

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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!

Monday 11 November 2019

Slay - Book Review

by Brittney Morris

What is it about:
By day, seventeen-year-old Kiera Johnson is an honors student, a math tutor, and one of the only Black kids at Jefferson Academy. But at home, she joins hundreds of thousands of Black gamers who duel worldwide as Nubian personas in the secret multiplayer online role-playing card game, SLAY. No one knows Kiera is the game developer, not her friends, her family, not even her boyfriend, Malcolm, who believes video games are partially responsible for the "downfall of the Black man."

But when a teen in Kansas City is murdered over a dispute in the SLAY world, news of the game reaches mainstream media, and SLAY is labeled a racist, exclusionist, violent hub for thugs and criminals. Even worse, an anonymous troll infiltrates the game, threatening to sue Kiera for "anti-white discrimination."

Driven to save the only world in which she can be herself, Kiera must preserve her secret identity and harness what it means to be unapologetically Black in a world intimidated by Blackness. But can she protect her game without losing herself in the process?

What did I think of it:
I totally got this book because there was a mention of an online role-playing game.

And this is a cool read even though I didn't really connect with Kiera. She had made things unnecessarily complicated for herself in my opinion. How can you really be partners or friends if you keep the thing that controls most of your life from those you love? That aside: there were other characters inside the game Slay I really liked and rooted for. Once their safe haven was threatened I feared for what would happen to them if they would lose it entirely.

The story was intriguing and had my attention from start to finish. There were some things I'd have liked to go differently, but overall this was a good read.

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

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Friday 8 November 2019

Terminal Alliance - Book Review

Terminal Alliance (Janitors of the Post-Apocalypse #1)
by Jim C. Hines

What is it about:

When the Krakau came to Earth, they planned to invite humanity into a growing alliance of sentient species.

This would have worked out better for all involved if they hadn’t arrived after a mutated plague wiped out half the planet, turned the rest into shambling, near-unstoppable animals, and basically destroyed human civilization. You know—your standard apocalypse.

The Krakau’s first impulse was to turn their ships around and go home. After all, it’s hard to establish diplomatic relations with mindless savages who eat your diplomats.

Their second impulse was to try to fix us.

A century later, human beings might not be what they once were, but at least they’re no longer trying to eat everyone. Mostly.

Marion “Mops” Adamopoulos is surprisingly bright (for a human). As a Lieutenant on the Earth Mercenary Corps Ship Pufferfish, she’s in charge of the Shipboard Hygiene and Sanitation team. When a bioweapon attack by an alien race wipes out the Krakau command crew and reverts the rest of the humans to their feral state, only Mops and her team are left with their minds intact.

Escaping the attacking aliens—not to mention her shambling crewmates—is only the beginning. Sure, Mops and her assortment of space janitors and plumbers can clean the ship, but flying the damn thing is another matter. As they struggle to keep the Pufferfish functioning and find a cure for their crew, they stumble onto a conspiracy that could threaten the entire alliance.

A conspiracy born from the truth of what happened on Earth all those years ago…

What did I think of it:
I absolutely love Hines' Jig the Goblin trilogy, but couldn't get into his Princess series. Then I saw this book and knew I had to try it!

And what a fun SF adventure.

Mops is the head of the janitor crew aboard the Pufferfish. When things go horribly wrong she , her crew, and an alien technician named Grom are the only ones who might be able to save the day.

This book mixes a really suspenseful adventure with lots of humor. I was both on the edge of my seat and laughing. I immediately bonded with Grom, they might be alien, but they were so easy to relate to. Mops and her team were really cool as well. I rooted for all of them to stay alive and to find out what was going on.

Each chapter starts with either a short piece of history or a conversation log, filling in gaps and providing entertainment. As Mops and her crew chase the truth danger stalks them from every side. I had to keep reading to see how this story would end.

All in all a really fun and entertaining read. You bet I will get my trotters on the next book.

Why should you read it:
Janitors in Space! Need I say more?

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Thursday 7 November 2019

More print books by Jeffe Kennedy!

Good news for fans of Jeffe Kennedy and lovers of print books!

Four novella's from the Twelve Kingdoms/Uncharted Realms series are now bundled into two print books!

The Snows of Windroven and Negotiation can be bought as a print book here

Heart's Blood and The Crown of the Queen can be bought as a print book here

International readers can buy these books at the online amazon store closest to them (uk, de, fr, etc...)

Wednesday 6 November 2019

Gideon the Ninth - Book Review

Gideon the Ninth (The Locked Tomb #1)
by Tamsyn Muir

What is it about:

The Emperor needs necromancers.

The Ninth Necromancer needs a swordswoman.

Gideon has a sword, some dirty magazines, and no more time for undead bullshit.

Tamsyn Muir's Gideon the Ninth unveils a solar system of swordplay, cut-throat politics, and lesbian necromancers. Her characters leap off the page, as skillfully animated as necromantic skeletons. The result is a heart-pounding epic science fantasy.

Brought up by unfriendly, ossifying nuns, ancient retainers, and countless skeletons, Gideon is ready to abandon a life of servitude and an afterlife as a reanimated corpse. She packs up her sword, her shoes, and her dirty magazines, and prepares to launch her daring escape. But her childhood nemesis won't set her free without a service.

Harrowhark Nonagesimus, Reverend Daughter of the Ninth House and bone witch extraordinaire, has been summoned into action. The Emperor has invited the heirs to each of his loyal Houses to a deadly trial of wits and skill. If Harrowhark succeeds she will become an immortal, all-powerful servant of the Resurrection, but no necromancer can ascend without their cavalier. Without Gideon's sword, Harrow will fail, and the Ninth House will die.

Of course, some things are better left dead.

What did I think of it:
Necromancers in space? Sign me up!

I will confess I've been lusting after this book ever after seeing an early copy in Dublin this August. So I was very happy to get my greedy trotters on it, and I'd have loved it just for its looks alone.

Luckily this book doesn't just look absolutely awesome, it's also a totally amazing read.

I was immediately hooked and I loved Gideon. I could totally understand why she wants nothing to do with the house she grew up in, and why she begrudgingly accompanies Harrow to the first house, where all other eight houses will be submitted to a test.

The story that develops can best be described as a Gothic murder mystery in space, and is absolutely fabulous! There were many characters, but all are so well worked out I didn't have a problem keeping up with who's involved in what scheme, and who is on the ball in the contest and who is not. I had my favorites, and once the bodies started falling, I was fearing for their lives.

Even with this book being over 400 pages long, it felt too short. I could have stayed lost in this Gothic adventure for ever. And the ending!!! OMG! I need the next book! You bet I've already preordered it and I'll be impatiently waiting for the release.

Why should you read it:
Necromancers in space!!

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Tuesday 5 November 2019

Teaser Tuesdays - Taming Demons for Beginners

With one ear tuned for sounds from the upper floor, I pried the lid off a plastic tote and shone my phone's flashlight inside.

(page 27, Taming Demons for Beginners by Annette Marie)

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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 sh"are 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!

Monday 4 November 2019

A Breath of Eyre - Book Review

A Breath of Eyre (Unbound #1)
by Eve Marie Mont

What is it about:
Emma Townsend has always believed in stories--the ones she reads voraciously, and the ones she creates. Perhaps it's because she feels like an outsider at her exclusive prep school, or because her stepmother doesn't come close to filling the void left by her mother's death. And her only romantic prospect--apart from a crush on her English teacher--is Gray Newman, a long-time friend who just adds to Emma's confusion. But escape soon arrives in an old leather-bound copy of Jane Eyre. . .

Reading of Jane's isolation sparks a deep sense of kinship. Then fate takes things a leap further when a lightning storm catapults Emma right into Jane's body and her nineteenth-century world. As governess at Thornfield, Emma has a sense of belonging she's never known--and an attraction to the brooding Mr. Rochester. Now, moving between her two realities and uncovering secrets in both, Emma must decide whether her destiny lies in the pages of Jane's story, or in the unwritten chapters of her own. . .

What did I think of it:
This was a nice, but forgettable read for me.

The story set in the now is one that I've seen done before, and the parts where Emma finds herself in Jane Eyre's world could have been so much more. Especially her first visit is practically a rehash of the original novel.

Still it was nice enough to keep reading to see where things would lead. There were some unique twists to the story, but not enough to lift the story to the heights I had hoped for. I won't continue this series.

Why should you read it:
It's a nice Paranormalish YA read.

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Friday 1 November 2019

Ghost Town - Book Review

Ghost Town (The Morganville Vampires #9)
by Rachel Caine

What is it about:
While developing a new system to maintain the town's defenses, Claire discovers a way to use the vampires' powers to help keep outsiders from spreading news of Morganville's "unique" situation once they've crossed the city limits.

But the new system has an unexpected and possibly deadly consequence: People inside the town start forgetting who and what they are - even the vampires. And when Claire's boyfriend, Shane, and her best friend, Eve, start treating her like a perfect stranger, Claire realizes she has to figure out a way to pull the plug on her experiment - before she forgets how to save herself... and Morganville.

What did I think of it:
It took me awhile to pick up this book after reading book 8 which was annoying at times (especially Shane), but this book is back in Morganville and much better than the previous book.

I will confess I'm not loving Shane. He seems to get more obnoxious, but it might be I'm just in an unforgiving mood. Myrnin, my favorite character has a nicely sized role in this book though, so I was all happy.

The stakes in this book are high: if Claire can't find a solution to the problems Morganville is facing, everyone will lose their memories with devastating results. I was hooked from the start and kept reading to see what was going on and how Claire would fix it.

All in all a very enjoyable addition to the series. I'll pick up the next book soon.

Why should you read it:
It's a fun YA Vampire read.

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Thursday 31 October 2019

First and Last Lines - Suspicious Minds

I looked at the first and last line of the book I just started to see what's in store.

First Line:
The man drove an immaculate black car along a flat Indiana road, slowing when he came to a chain-link gate with a RESTRICTED AREA sign.

This first line is great for setting the mood and place. We know it's in Indiana, but somewhere with limited access. It also tells us the man has a really cool car.

Last Line:
No one and nothing could stop her.

Oh, this tells me that someone is unstoppable. It also hints there is more to come for this character. I'm eager to read this book to find out why she is unstoppable.

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First and Last Lines is based on an idea by invaluable

Wednesday 30 October 2019

The Bone Houses - Book Review

The Bone Houses
by Emily Lloyd-Jones

What is it about:
Seventeen-year-old Aderyn ("Ryn") only cares about two things: her family, and her family's graveyard. And right now, both are in dire straits. Since the death of their parents, Ryn and her siblings have been scraping together a meager existence as gravediggers in the remote village of Colbren, which sits at the foot of a harsh and deadly mountain range that was once home to the fae. The problem with being a gravedigger in Colbren, though, is that the dead don't always stay dead.

The risen corpses are known as "bone houses," and legend says that they're the result of a decades-old curse. When Ellis, an apprentice mapmaker with a mysterious past, arrives in town, the bone houses attack with new ferocity. What is it that draws them near? And more importantly, how can they be stopped for good?

Together, Ellis and Ryn embark on a journey that will take them deep into the heart of the mountains, where they will have to face both the curse and the long-hidden truths about themselves.

What did I think of it:
Walking corpses and a gravedigger who has to deal with them?! You bet I got my greedy trotters on this book.

And what an awesome read.

The small town of Colbren stands on the edge of a forest where the dead don't rest easy. I loved the worldbuilding and the atmosphere of this book, it clearly has its roots in Irish folklore, but the story is set in a Fantasy world as far as I could tell.

I loved Aderyn and her family, especially her younger sister. I was soon totally engrossed in the story and I was rooting for Aderyn, her family, and Ellis. As Aderyn and Ellis go in search of the source of the restless dead things get really spooky and creepy. Slowly you get more information about what happened to make the dead walk, and why they suddenly turned more aggressive.

All in all a wonderful standalone story that is the perfect read for this time of year. You bet I'm going to investigate what else Lloyd-Jones has written.

Why should you read it:
It's a wonderful spooky read.

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Tuesday 29 October 2019

Teaser Tuesdays - SLAY

I log in and my pulse races as I watch my logo appear in brilliant green all caps against a black background. SLAY, it says on the screen inside my goggles.

(page 22, SLAY by Brittney Morris)

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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 sh"are 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!

Monday 28 October 2019

The Blacksmith Queen - Book Review

The Blacksmith Queen (The Scarred Earth Saga #1)
by G.A. Aiken

What is it about:

The Old King Is Dead

With the demise of the Old King, there’s a prophesy that a queen will ascend to the throne of the Black Hills. Bad news for the king’s sons, who are prepared to defend their birthright against all comers. But for blacksmith Keeley Smythe, war is great for business. Until it looks like the chosen queen will be Beatrix, her younger sister. Now it’s all Keeley can do to protect her family from the enraged royals.

Luckily, Keeley doesn’t have to fight alone. Because thundering to her aid comes a clan of kilt-wearing mountain warriors called the Amichai. Not the most socially adept group, but soldiers have never bothered Keeley, and rough, gruff Caid, actually seems to respect her. A good thing because the fierce warrior will be by her side for a much longer ride than any prophesy ever envisioned …

What did I think of it:
I won this book in a giveaway, and even though this is normally more of a book for Voodoo Bride or Olivia, I decided to give it a try.

And this is a fun read!

Even with some serious things going on, this book is very entertaining and funny. The characters are larger than life, but that just makes it more fun. There isn't a dull moment in the book. I liked getting to know Keeley and her family, and the Amichai.

The book is the first in a series, and even though it doesn't end on a total cliffhanger, there are enough things still unresolved that I'm eager to discover what will be next. I'm suspecting the next book will have a different lead character, but if it is who I think it is, I'm very curious to see how her story will go.

Why should you read it:
It's a fun and enjoyable Fantasy read.

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Friday 25 October 2019

Jaffle Inc - Book Review

Jaffle Inc
by Heide Goody and Iain Grant

What is it about:
Alice works for Jaffle Tech incorporated, the world’s biggest technology company and the creator of the Jaffle Port, the brain implant that gives users direct access to global communications, social networks and every knowledge source on the planet.
Alice is on Jaffle Standard, the free service offered to all people. All she has to do in return is let Jaffle use a bit of her brain’s processing power. Maybe it’s being used to control satellites. Maybe it’s being used to further space exploration. Maybe it’s helping control self-driving cars on the freeway. Her brain is helping Jaffle help the world. And Jaffle are only using the bits of her brain she doesn’t need…

But when a kind deed goes wrong, Alice gains unauthorised access to her entire brain and discovers what she has been missing out on her entire life: music, art, laughter, love…

Now that she has discovered what her mind is truly capable of, how long will the company bosses let her keep it?

What did I think of it:
When you pick up a book by Heide Goody and Iain Grant you know you're in for a laugh.

Jaffle Inc is both very humorous and a critical look at how easily we give away our rights. Alice is the perfect worker at Jaffle Inc until the moment she accidentally gets her brain reset and she starts to experience things she has never experienced before. As she explores her new found emotions and senses she ends up in lots of hilarious situations. Soon she is on a crusade for those less fortunate and this leads to more chaos.

I loved following her antics and discovering more about the scary world she lives in. There were some really cool other characters as well. I especially liked her selfish landlord, who gets drawn into her adventures whether he wants to or not. I rooted for Alice to succeed in her plans and couldn't put the book down until I finished it. Goody and Grant did a great job at balancing the hilarious nonsense with the more serious subjects, making this a funny and a suspenseful read.

All in all a very entertaining read. I'll be keeping an eye out for what's next for Goody and Grant.

Why should you read it:
It's a funny near future adventure

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