Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Please welcome my new co-blogger!



As you all may have noticed, things have gotten a little sparse over here. It's gotten to the point where blogging had to scoot down the priorities ladder a bit. Still, I love this blog and want to see it flourish! I've been debating on whether or not to bring someone else on to provide you quality content, and I've finally decided it's time. Please welcome my new co-blogger, Tina!

Hello lovely readers! My name is Tina and I love books. The wonderful Jessica, who I've known for *gasp* 15 years now, has invited me to join the HDB family and I couldn't be more excited. My love affair with books has been around as long as I can remember and though I am relatively new at the reviewing side of things, I am delighted to dive in to this new endeavor. My reading preferences vary wildly compared to the Babysitters Club and Nancy Drew days of my childhood, but I am equally enthusiastic to jump into a new book these days. Thrillers, romance, young adult, dystopia, new adult, horror, fantasy, sci-fi, or contemporary- you name it and I'll read it.  I am looking forward to getting to know all of you and being a part of this community.

I would love to know what you, our readers, would like to see more of? Is there a genre you would like to see reviewed more often? More cute animal pictures? Shout out in the comments!
You'll see her name around her from now on! She'll be providing reviews, writing up posts, and participating in memes via the blog. So enjoy! And don't forget to say hi :).



Monday, September 29, 2014

Monday Musings


Picture of the day:

Because whether this is a kitten, or a puppy, or some kind of adorable new puff ball pet? It's absolutely adorable! How can you have a bad Monday when something that adorable is staring at you?

***

I've slowly been settling back in to blogging more regularly over here. I'm still only making it a 3-4 day a week thing, but it's feeling more natural. I think I'm getting back into the groove of wanting to write new content. To all of you still out there? You have no idea how much I always appreciate you sticking with me. Blogging can be a ton of fun, but it can also feel stressful at times. I'd rather keep it to the fun side :).

I finally saw The Maze Runner this last week! I'm thrilled at the trend of YA books becoming movies, but more thrilled that they're finally learning how to turn them into something that does the book justice. I actually really enjoyed the movie. Even my husband, who hasn't read the book and isn't a big reader overall, was immersed in the story. It had that perfect balance of action and back story. Kudos Hollywood! Let's keep it going.

I'm not quite feeling 100% today, which is why I'm rambling, but I promise that more reviews are coming! Tomorrow will be my monthly wrap up post, so keep an eye out in case you're looking for new reads.

Happy Monday!


Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Book Review: The Betrayed (Krewe of Hunters #14) by Heather Graham


Media Type: Ebook (ARC)
Title: The Betrayed
   *Series: Krewe of Hunters #14
Author: Heather Graham
Publisher: Harlequin MIRA
Pages: MMP; 368
Release Date: September 30, 2014
Source: NetGalley / Publisher
----------------------------------------------
Genre: Romantic Suspense / Thriller

HDB Rating: 3 Keys to My Heart

Recommended to: Fans of the series, although this can be read as a standalone as well.

Add it on: Goodreads / Amazon / BookLikes
Sleepy Hollow isn't so sleepy anymore…

One night, New York FBI agent Aiden Mahoney receives a visitor in a dream—an old friend named Richard Highsmith. The very next day he's sent to Sleepy Hollow because Richard's gone missing there.

Maureen—Mo—Deauville now lives in the historic town and works with her dog, Rollo, to search for missing people. She's actually the one to find Richard…or more precisely his head, stuck on a statue of the legendary Headless Horseman.

Mo and Aiden, a new member of the Krewe of Hunters, the FBI's unit of paranormal investigators, explore both past and present events to figure out who betrayed Richard, who killed him and now wants to kill them, too. As they work together, they discover that they share an unusual trait—the ability to communicate with the dead. They also share an attraction that's as intense as it is unexpected…if they live long enough to enjoy it!


So, I actually went into The Betrayed knowing that this is a well established series, and that I'd be coming in on the most recent book. There are 13 books in the Krewe of Hunters series that come before this one, but I was told that I'd have no problem reading it as a standalone. I have to say, that was accurate! I may have been missing a bit of the history of the Krewe, but these characters and their story line stood firmly on their own. If you're thinking of picking this up, and worried that you might be lost, never fear. It truly can be read separate from the rest.

On to the review, shall we? In all fairness, I don't read a lot of romantic suspense. However Heather Graham has been hailed as a master of the genre, so I wasn't afraid to pick up one of her books. I've been told that Graham loves her settings, and I now know that to be the truth. This particular book is set in Sleepy Hollow and the surrounding area. Places rich with history and old tales. I was completely impressed at how vivid everything about this setting was. The places become characters in their own right, adding just the right amount of tension to the story. I've never been to these places, but after reading this book I might just have to make a trip and soak up the atmosphere.

The problem was that, although the setting was beautifully done, the characters just didn't catch my attention. I didn't mind Mo or Aiden. They weren't obnoxious, or over the top. Unfortunately, that was exactly what I couldn't latch onto. These characters felt flat. Like paper cutouts of human beings. There wasn't anything wrong with them at all but, because of that, there was nothing attractive about them urging me to care to them. Adding to this, was the fact that the dialogue between all the characters in this book felt very awkward and disjointed. Their interactions were just so uncomfortable for me to read. It made getting through this book take a lot longer than I expected.

At the end of the story, I just felt unfulfilled. As I said, the setting of this book is gorgeous. Perfectly rendered, and definitely with a charm all its own. The mystery aspect isn't half bad either. I liked the twists, and turns. If it weren't for the wooden characters, and disjointed dialogue, I really think I would have enjoyed this story immensely. I've been assured by other readers of this series that the books prior to this are much better. So this might just be a case of a rocky book in the mix. I liked what I read enough to be interested in continuing, at least.



FTC Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Book Review: The Whispering Skull (Lockwood & Co. #2) by Jonathan Stroud


Media Type: Ebook (ARC)
Title: The Whispering Skull
   *Series: Lockwood & Co. #2
Author: Jonathan Stroud
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Pages: Hardcover; 448
Release Date: September 16, 2014
Source: NetGalley / Publisher
---------------------------------------------
Content Screening: Mild Violence

HDB Rating: 5 Keys to My Heart

Recommended to: Everyone! Especially those who loved the first book in this series. Can you believe it? It gets better!

Add it on: Goodreads / Amazon / BookLikes
In the six months since Anthony, Lucy, and George survived a night in the most haunted house in England, Lockwood & Co. hasn't made much progress. Quill Kipps and his team of Fittes agents keep swooping in on Lockwood's investigations. Finally, in a fit of anger, Anthony challenges his rival to a contest: the next time the two agencies compete on a job, the losing side will have to admit defeat in theTimes newspaper.

Things look up when a new client, Mr. Saunders, hires Lockwood & Co. to be present at the excavation of Edmund Bickerstaff, a Victorian doctor who reportedly tried to communicate with the dead. Saunders needs the coffin sealed with silver to prevent any supernatural trouble. All goes well-until George's curiosity attracts a horrible phantom.

Back home at Portland Row, Lockwood accuses George of making too many careless mistakes. Lucy is distracted by urgent whispers coming from the skull in the ghost jar. Then the team is summoned to DEPRAC headquarters. Kipps is there too, much to Lockwood's annoyance. Bickerstaff's coffin was raided and a strange glass object buried with the corpse has vanished. Inspector Barnes believes the relic to be highly dangerous, and he wants it found.
If you haven't yet read my gushing review of the first book in this series, let me sum up my feelings for you. Lockwood & Co. is brilliantly written fiction, with witty banter and a rich atmospheric setting. Is it any wonder that I was thrilled to be offered the second book in this series for review? I couldn't wait to join up once again with Lockwood, Lucy and George. To ramble about the ghost filled England they reside in, and solve dangerous mysteries with them. I adore these characters, and Jonathan Stroud for writing them.

After their last case was solved successfully, things have definitely improved for Lockwood & Co. They may not be the highest paid agents, or the most well-dressed, but they more than make up for that with their ability to solve the toughest cases. I smiled at the fact that nothing had changed about about these three. Lockwood was still as debonair as ever, George just as lovably gruff, and Lucy maintained her ability to outwit any person who dared cross her. I loved the fact that these three characters were like a little family. Three pieces of a puzzle that fit together perfectly. Their lightning quick banter, their little scuffles, all of it just made them that more lovable. I couldn't wait to see what spectral enemy they took on this time.

I wasn't disappointed! I learned in the first book that Stroud is not afraid of sharing shiver-inducing details. He writes in a way that wraps the reader up in a web of words. You'll be following the case right along with the characters, and suddenly realize that your nose has gotten quite close to the page as you devour the words leading up to the climax. Everything about this case was deliciously eerie. Rotting skeletons, a mysterious mirror, gruesome deaths, it all added up to an amazing story that was impossible to put down. Once you added in the fact that our fearless characters find themselves in very real danger, more than once? Well, you can see why I finished this so quickly.

This series is spectacular so far! I gave the first book five stars, and I have absolutely no problem with giving this one the same stellar rating. There is nothing I don't love about these books. Much love to Jonathan Stroud. You've taken your rightful place on my shelf of favorite authors.

Other books in this series:



FTC Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion.

Monday, September 22, 2014

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (9/22/14)


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Click above to join in the fun!

Good news? I have three more weeks left until my vacation. It's my hope that it'll pull me out of this existential funk I currently find myself in. Bad news? It's still three weeks away. LOL. Ah, Monday. You never cease to make me pout. It was a good reading week though! Here's what I devoured, and what's on deck.




Last week I finished reading some more of the NetGalley ARCs I had piling up. I'm trying to cull them into submission, since my clicking finger goes a little crazy sometimes :). The Vault of Dreamers turned out to be better than I expected, although I'm still not sold on the whole reality TV aspect of it. V-Wars was tons of bloody fun. The gem of the week was definitely The Whispering Skull though. I missed Lockwood, and I was all too eager to get back into his world! I wasn't disappointed!

Yup, still plugging away at Outlander. I've got roughly 40% to go on this audio book and I'm liking it well enough. I'm so very glad I'm past the "we're newly married so let's do what bunnies do!" and onto more exciting things. Also still working on Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. I keep having to set it aside for other books, but I'm a fan of it so far! Finally, I started Where Silence Gathers this morning. It's just as dark as Sutton's first book, but I'm loving it.




Another book to clear off the NetGalley shelves, The Scandalous Sisterhood of Prickwillow Place is next up in line :). It looks quite good, so here's hoping.

That's it for me! What are YOU reading this week? Don't forget to leave a link so I can go and visit you too!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Thoughts on Thursday



Picture of the day:

Donuts. Mmmm... donuts. That's what's on my mind today.


So, once upon a time, a long time ago, in a blog far far away, there was a Jessica who actually loved posting in her book blog every day. She'd lay out posts weeks in advance, revel in the opportunity to create new content, and grimace only slightly when one line of HTML would throw off her whole formatted blog post.

Then, she got a full time job.

It's been two years since then. I miss having more time to blog, but I also miss not actually interacting with all of you! For the last two years I've been so busy working, and trying to put up reviews on time, that I've forgotten what started me blogging in the first place: being part of a community of readers!

After a lot of thought, I've decided to let go of what I was doing before. I'll post when I can, and I'm no longer really concerned about always posting bookish things. You might see a recipe here or there, posts like this where I ramble (and make you want donuts), and other things. This is my home. It's my space. I miss my blog, and I miss hearing from all of you awesome people out there.

So, happy Thursday! Don't worry, Friday is right around the corner. Oh, and if you're craving a donut now? Sorry, not sorry. I want one too.



Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Book Review: Made For You


Media Type: Print Book (ARC)
Title: Made For You
Author: Melissa Marr
Publisher: Harper Collins
Pages: Hardcover; 368
Release Date: September 16, 2014
Source: Publisher / Publicity
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Content Screening: Violence

HDB Rating: 4 Keys to My Heart

Recommended to: Readers who enjoy atmospheric, dark and twisted YA thrillers.

Add it on: Goodreads / Amazon / BookLikes
When Eva Tilling wakes up in the hospital, she’s confused—who in her sleepy little North Carolina town could have hit her with their car? And why? But before she can consider the question, she finds that she’s awoken with a strange new skill: the ability to foresee people’s deaths when they touch her. While she is recovering from the hit-and-run, Nate, an old flame, reappears, and the two must traverse their rocky past as they figure out how to use Eva’s power to keep her friends—and themselves—alive. But while Eva and Nate grow closer, the killer grows increasingly frantic in his attempt to get to Eva.

For the first time, New York Times bestselling author Melissa Marr has applied her extraordinary talent to contemporary realism. Chilling twists, unrequited obsession, and high-stakes romance drive this Gothic, racy thriller—a story of small-town oppression and salvation. Melissa’s fans, and every YA reader, will find its wild ride enthralling.
Well now, this book surprised me! When it was first offered to me for review, I was understandably thrilled. Melissa Marr has never left me disappointed. I'll grant you the fact that I was also a little nervous, simply because Made For You is a break from what Marr normally writes. I was promised something contemporary. A dark, sinister thriller that would keep me reading well into the night. I'm happy to report that all of that was quite true.

Eva Tilling stole my heart. There are no words for how refreshing it was to have a popular female character who isn't a total witch. See, Eva grew up in the Southern elite. A group of people who, based on their money and status, essentially run the entire town. You'd expect her to be a spoiled, petty girl, no? No. In fact, Eva is one of those characters who is instantly likable. Honest, funny, sweet, and just that hint of rebellious that I love. The fact that she felt the pressure to be more, and still held onto her own personality, sold me on her character. I couldn't have been happier.

Actually, I think the whole idea of this story taking place in Eva's hometown created some great atmosphere. Southern Gothic stories about the decay of the aristocracy have always been my favorite. Watching those who have everything slowly fall apart intrigues me. In this case, I wouldn't say Made For You is exactly a Southern Gothic story, but it does have some of those elements. The fact that this town of people is more than willing to cover up certain occurrences, in order to save face with the public, only heightens the feeling that there are secrets brewing beneath the surface.

I could go on about the deliciously palatable tension that flows through this book. I could rave about the fact that, for the first time in a long time, I didn't have to suffer through a love triangle. Or that the killer's POV was done quite well. There's a lot I could say, but I'd rather let you discover it for yourself. Any small qualms I had about this book were far overshadowed by what what I loved. I found myself hanging on every word, right up until the ending. If you haven't yet added this to your reading list, I'd suggest you do! I think you'll be pleasantly surprised with this YA thriller.



FTC Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion.

Monday, September 15, 2014

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (9/15/14)

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Is it really Monday again already? Sigh.  The weekends are just never long enough, I tell you. That, and I've been in a bit of a reading slump again. Hopping between books, just trying to find something to hold my attention. 


I made it through 3 of the books I've flitting between last week. Solomon's Whisper is the fifth book in Sandra Brannan's Liv Bergen Mystery Series! I love Liv with all my heart. While this wasn't my favorite book in the series so far, I did enjoy it. I also finished The Swallow: A Ghost Story by Charis Cotter. This one was a bit of a miss for me. Great premise, okay execution. Rounding things out was a book of short stories I snagged as a freebie from Amazon. Funhouse by Michael Bray was an interesting mix of horror and mystery. Not too shabby, honestly.


Amid working on book club reads, and finishing up my audio version of Outlander, I've also started two new books. The Vault of Dreamers by Caragh M. O'Brien is shaping up to be a pretty intriguing read, if not a little bit confusing at times. It releases tomorrow! I'm also reading Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. Yup, finally! I've been waiting to get to it forever, and I'm loving it!

  
Last month I was lucky enough to receive a copy of The Thinking Woman's Guide to Real Magic! I've been eagerly waiting for a chance to read it, and I finally have some downtime to fit it in. I've heard amazing things, and I'm excited!
 
That's it for me! What are YOU reading this week? Don't forget to leave a link so I can go and visit you too!


Sunday, September 14, 2014

Book Review: Solomon's Whisper (Liv Bergen #5) by Sandra Brannan


Media Type: Ebook (ARC)
Title: Solmon's Whisper
   *Series: A Liv Bergen Mystery #5
Author: Sandra Brannan
Publisher: Greenleaf Book Group
Pages: Ebook; 350
Release Date: September 2, 2014
Source: NetGalley / Publisher
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Genre: Mystery / Thriller

HDB Rating: 3 Keys to My Heart

Recommended to: Fans of the series, if you haven't started it yet you definitely should!

Add it on: Goodreads / Amazon / BookLikes
As Liv Bergen investigates the long-ago murder of her niece, she uncovers a well-guarded secret—and stumbles into one the most prolific killer she’s faced yet

Once an amateur sleuth, Liv “Boots” Bergen has now found her footing as an official FBI agent. It should be Liv’s dream career—she’s working closely with a bureau legend, Agent Streeter Pierce, as well as the exotic Agent Jack Linwood, with whom she shares a growing romance. Liv has proven to be an adept agent, and the whole office has been moved to a brand new, state-of-the-art facility in central Denver.

And yet, doubt plagues her. Liv is tormented by the knowledge that her work with the FBI could endanger her extended family—and has almost resolved to leave the bureau as a result. Agent Streeter Pierce, who harbors an affection for Liv that sometimes transcends the professional, comes up with an unorthodox plan to keep her around: she can investigate a cold case that’s especially important to her, the kidnapping and murder of her ten-year-old niece, Brianna.

Liv jumps at the chance, but her focus on finding Brianna’s killer is soon diluted. Piece by piece, the case reveals itself to be just one point in a harrowing series of murders. Spanning decades and the country, the web of crime Liv uncovers causes her to question everything—including the integrity of her own colleagues.


For the first time since I started this series, it's actually been tough for me to write a review. It's no secret that I'm a huge fan of both Liv Bergen and her creator. I love Liv's vibrant personality, and the fact that she's such a down to earth person. In fact, I don't even bat an eye at this point when one of these books is offered to me for review. I'm a fan of Liv Bergen, and I'm not afraid to admit it. This time around though, I have to say that it took me a long time to fully settle in. Solomon's Whisper takes a sharp turn from what I was used to previously. I'll explain below.

One of the things I always enjoyed most about Liv's stories was that they weren't your typical crime novels. Her cases have always been rather personal, whether she was protecting her hometown or her family members. There's something comforting about knowing the person that you're following has a firm foot in the mystery they are solving. It was refreshing to be able to enjoy a story that dealt with the FBI and not have to slog through a ton of infodumps or hunt down terms. It's why I fell in love with Liv's books. She was always so personable and brave.

That being said, this particular installment threw me off at first. To fans of the series, you'll remember that Liv is now working with the FBI officially. I was excited to see her in her new role. Eager to see where her new contacts and abilities would take her. The first third or so of the book centered around her settling in and, to be completely honest, took me a long time to get through. Those infodumps I wasn't missing before? They made their debut. It wasn't until Streeter gave Liv a case related to her, which I was hoping for, that things picked back up for me. Once again I was excited. Where would it take her?

Unfortunately, this particular book doesn't deal with just one case. Instead, that one case branches off into multiple cases that are similar, and soon I found myself swimming in an overload of information. Names, dates, events, all blurred together into something that I just couldn't latch onto. It took me until almost the very end to feel fully immersed. Then that ending? It killed me. So much.

I can't say I didn't enjoy this read. I still had Liv, and I was able to see how she'd grown. For that, I was appreciative. Everything else just didn't feel like what I was used to. It seemed like too much was going on at the same time, to be honest. For Liv, and for our past together, I'll offer up three stars to this book. Solomon's Whisper is the first time our leading lady has been fully tethered to the FBI, and it's probably just my own bias that kept me from loving it. I know I'll still be back for more.


Noah's Rainy Day (Liv Bergen Mysteries #4)


FTC Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

ARC Review: Winterkill by Kate A. Boorman


Media Type: Ebook (ARC)
Title: Winterkill
Author: Kate A. Boorman
Publisher: Amulet Books
Pages: Hardcover; 336
Release Date: September 9, 2014
Source: NetGalley
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Content Screening: Mild Violence

HDB Rating: 3 Keys to My Heart

Recommended to: Readers who enjoy rich, atmospheric writing with a desolate setting to match.

Add it on: Goodreads / Amazon / BookLikes
Emmeline knows she’s not supposed to explore the woods outside her settlement. The enemy that wiped out half her people lurks there, attacking at night and keeping them isolated in an unfamiliar land with merciless winters. Living with the shame of her grandmother’s insubordination, Emmeline has learned to keep her head down and her quick tongue silent.

When the settlement leader asks for her hand in marriage, it’s an opportunity for Emmeline to wash the family slate clean—even if she has eyes for another. But before she’s forced into an impossible decision, her dreams urge her into the woods, where she uncovers a path she can’t help but follow. The trail leads to a secret that someone in the village will kill to protect. Her grandmother followed the same path and paid the price. If Emmeline isn’t careful, she will be next.

If you've read any other reviews of Winterkill, you probably already know what movie this book is being compared to. I'll admit, I had the same thought originally. A hidden settlement in the middle of the forest. An unknown terror that lurks right on the fringes, terrifying the inhabitants into submission. The group of people who rise up to make sure that their submission is total. Are you with still with me? Now, as much as I agree that this has a lot of similarities, it doesn't negate the fact that this actually an interesting story. Winterkill does have quite a bit to offer. Don't count it out just yet.

I adored Emmeline, our main character. As one of the Stained, she has a much different view of her town than most of the other people who populate it. She's on the outside, looking in. This creates a great way to see into the corruption that simmers beneath the surface. It makes it easy to understand that nothing is what it seems. It also creates this beautiful and mysterious atmosphere, that only increases as Emmeline slowly uncovers the truth. I couldn't pull myself away. I had to see what she found next. Her innocence clashed perfectly with what was going on around her, and I loved it.

Major points also go to Boorman for creating such a believable society in the first place. Although it is hinted at, it's never quite fully explained where Emmeline's community came from. We simply know that each Winter (La Prise) they struggle to survive, and welcome the next Spring. I was easily able to make myself a part of their struggle. Everything from chores, to customs, to classes was laid out for me. I was just another cog in the machine. I feel like that was an important part of why I read this so ravenously. I felt involved.

So why the three star rating, you ask? Simply, I felt like the first half of Winterkill was spectacular, and then things went downhill. By the time I neared the ending, I knew that there wouldn't be enough time to answer all my questions. There simply weren't enough pages left to tie everything up. I watched as Emmeline finally discovered the truth, and found myself sitting there confused. It wasn't what I was expecting, at all. It didn't feel like an ending worthy of all the lovely, atmospheric writing leading up to it. Overall though? I enjoyed my time in Emmeline's world. With its mysteries and romance, I couldn't fault it for not delivering the ending that I personally wanted. Three stars it is.



FTC Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Book Review: Heir of Fire (Throne of Glass #3) by Sarah J. Maas

Media Type: Ebook (ARC)
Title: Heir of Fire
   *Series: Throne of Glass #3
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Pages: Hardcover; 576
Release Date: September 2, 2014
Source: NetGalley / Publisher
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Content Screening: Violence

HDB Rating: 5 Keys to My Heart

Recommended to: Readers who love this series, and are ready for more! If you haven't started, what are you waiting for?

Add it on: Goodreads / Amazon / BookLikes
Celaena has survived deadly contests and shattering heartbreak—but at an unspeakable cost. Now, she must travel to a new land to confront her darkest truth . . . a truth about her heritage that could change her life—and her future—forever. Meanwhile, brutal and monstrous forces are gathering on the horizon, intent on enslaving her world. Will Celaena find the strength to not only fight her inner demons, but to take on the evil that is about to be unleashed?

The bestselling series that has captured readers all over the world reaches new heights in this sequel to the New York Times best-selling Crown of Midnight. Packed with heart-pounding action, fierce new characters, and swoon-worthy romance, this third book will enthrall readers from start to finish.

Where do I begin? First off, this series made my favorites list the instant that I met Celaena Sardothien. I have a soft spot for heroines who are flawed and aren't afraid to admit it. Women who see the unimaginable space separating them from happiness, and still don't give up the fight. Celaena has been that character for me and, despite any slight qualms I may have had with the last book, her fire was back in spades in Heir of Fire. I love Celaena. I'd follow her anywhere.

True to my word, I did. This book takes the reader on an adventure well past the confines of the last two. Out of Adarlan, and into the lands beyond. I was breathless as I traveled through old cities, met new players in this ever expanding world, and finally ended up in the land of the Fae. I'll be honest, this story does take a bit to pick up. It makes sense, since there is a lot that must be introduced and explained, and it's absolutely worth it. My view of Celaena and the people who surround her is so much more vast now. This is the first book where I actually felt completely immersed, and I loved every minute of it.

I feel it fair to note that this is a much darker book than the previous ones. While our heroine's story has always been blackened by death and loss, she's always hidden that part of herself away. Now that Celaena knows that Fae blood runs through her veins, and she's finally forced to conquer it? Things take an even darker turn. I'll admit that when Rowan was first introduced, I didn't like him. I suppose that's the point. He's a cold man, much like what Chaol was originally like. He grew on me though and, after a while, I couldn't get enough of him. Adding him into the mix, giving Celaena a male counterpart who is worthy of her time, made things so much more interesting.

I honestly had no idea that this wasn't the end of this series, and I'm torn on how I feel about that. Heir of Fire definitely brings to the table a ton of things that are new, and need to be resolved. Which is great. On the other hand, it makes the book really long. Towards the end things started to drag a little. Still, the ending does definitely leave you wanting more! So there's that. I just hope this series continues to deliver stellar reads like this one. Book three, and I'm still hooked. Now I'll just sit here quietly and wait for book four.

 

FTC Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion.

Monday, September 1, 2014

August 2014 Wrap Up


The closer it gets to the end of the year, the busier life gets. Still, it was a pretty good month of reading! I know I haven't been around the blog as much. Work isn't as stable as I'd like it to be, but I'm still here and doing the best I can! Thanks for sticking with me!

**********

(C) = Children / (YA) = Young Adult / (NA) = New Adult
(A) = Adult / (MG) = Middle Grade
** Books read in previous months

Books read and reviewed in August:
(YA) The Girl From the Well by Rin Chupeco - Review (3/5)
(YA) *GN* Meteor Men by Jeff Parker - Review (4/5)
(A) *GN* Age of Darkness: Volume 1 by Patrick Shand - Review (3/5)
(A) *Manga* Les Misérables by Victor Hugo - Review (3/5)
(YA) The Young World by Chris Weitz - Review (3/5)
(A) One Night of Sin by Elle Kennedy - Review (4/5)
(A) *Novella* The Sleeping Dead by Richard Farren Barber - Review (3/5)
(MG) The Castle Behind the Thorns by Merrie Haskell - Review (2/5)
(MG) The Fourteenth Goldfish by Jennifer L. Holm - Review (3/5)
(MG) Wonder Light: Unicorns of the Mist by R.R. Russell - Review (2/5)
(A) Steel's Edge (The Edge #4) by Ilona Andrews - Review (5/5)
(YA) Every Ugly Word by Aimee L. Salter - Review (4/5)
(C) Julia's House for Lost Creatures by Ben Hatke - Review (5/5)
(A) *SS* The Morning Dew by Edward Lorn - Review (4/5)
(YA) Paper Towns by John Green - Review (4/5)
(YA) Blackfin Sky by Kat Ellis - Review (3/5)
(YA) Call Me Grim by Elizabeth Holloway - Review (2/5)
(A) *Novella* Under the Hood by Sally Clements - Review (3/5)

Total Reviewed: 18
Towards month totals: 18

Books read but not reviewed: 
(A) Let No False Angels by Wesley Morrison - 3/5
(YA) Heir of Fire (Throne of Glass #3) by Sarah J. Maas - 5/5

Total books read in August: 20
Goal Progress: 137 books out of 150 books (91% done)


Favorite book of the month?

I fell in love with Julia's House for Lost Creatures wholeheartedly. Such a sweet children's book! Heir of Fire stole the show though. So impressive! I'm entirely happy that it lived up to the hype :).

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