Friday, January 12, 2018

The Last Good Night by Tiffany Reisz


Synopsis:
Now that the perpetrator has been apprehended, Nora sadly acknowledges she doesn't need a bodyguard anymore. She adores Lance and wants to keep him but is faced with a dilemma—if she uses her connections to help Lance, she'll have to give him up forever…
(Synopsis from Goodreads). 

My Thoughts:
In 2015, I started reading The Last Good Knight series by Tiffany Reisz. It was the first book that I read by her, and I instantly fell in love with the series. I have been putting off reading the last book in the series, The Last Good Night. I know the books are short, so I could have easily read it quickly, but I didn't want the series to end. I didn't want to say goodbye to these characters. However, one of my goals this year is to finish series that I've started, so I finally decided to read it. It was the perfect ending to the series. 

I loved The Last Good Night. The reader got to see a completely new side of Nora. This book reinforced that she's not just a dom. She's also a caring, loving, kind, kickass woman who is willing to go above and beyond to do anything for those that she cares about. The thing that she goes out of her way to do made me cry. It was so sweet. In fact, a few parts made me cry, which is surprising for how short the book was. I was heartbroken by the ending. I didn't like which relationship she chose, although I do understand why it had to happen.

Tiffany Reisz wrote the perfect conclusion to a series. After finishing this series, she has become one of my favorite authors. I love how her writing style takes me into Nora's world, and makes me feel like I'm there, experiencing things with her. I loved this series so much I didn't want it to end. I can't wait to read The Original Sinners series, and learn more about Nora, Soren, and everyone else. I'll be so happy to be able to reconnect with these characters.


I give The Last Good Night: 5/5.

Want to know more about the author?
Website: https://www.tiffanyreisz.com/
facebook: https://www.facebook.com/littleredridingcrop/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/8thcirclepress
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/tiffany_reisz/
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4480131.Tiffany_Reisz

I received this book from the publisher, via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review. I was in no way compensated for this review.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Cold-Forged Flame by Marie Brennan


Synopsis:
The sound of the horn pierces the apeiron, shattering the stillness of that realm. Its clarion call creates ripples, substance, something more. It is a summons, a command. There is will. There is need.
And so, in reply, there is a woman.

At the beginning—no—at the end—she appears, full of fury and bound by chains of prophecy.

Setting off on an unexplained quest from which she is compelled to complete, and facing unnatural challenges in a land that doesn’t seem to exist, she will discover the secrets of herself, or die trying. But along the way, the obstacles will grow to a seemingly insurmountable point, and the final choice will be the biggest sacrifice yet.

This is the story of a woman’s struggle against her very existence, an epic tale of the adventure and emotional upheaval on the way to face an ancient enigmatic foe. This could only spun from the imagination of Marie Brennan, award-winning author and beloved fantasist, beginning a new series about the consequences of war—and of fate.

(Synopsis from Goodreads). 

My Thoughts:
I've heard great things about Marie Brennan's books. My husband has read her The Memoirs of Lady Trent series, and loved it. It was one of his favorite fantasy series that he read in 2016. He has talked so positively about her books that I've really wanted to read them. I was looking through her backlog, and decided to try Cold-Forged Flame. It's a Tor.com novella, which I've read a lot of recently. It's short, so I figured it would be a quick read to get a taste of her writing style. Unfortunately, I didn't like it at all. 

I had so many problems with Cold-Forged Flame. I think the main problem I had with the book was that it was so boring. Nothing happened. There was no plot advancement at all. Every time I felt like something exciting was going to happen, the book went down a different path, and nothing happened. It left me feeling frustrated, and very disappointed. It just felt like a waste of time reading one hundred and four pages. I understand that a lot of that was because of world building, and that it's very hard to build a complex world in a little over one hundred pages. If the book was longer, it might have held my interest more because it probably would have had some action. It was starting to have some at the end of the book, but at that point, I just didn't care and wanted to be done reading it. 

Cold-Forged Flame was incredibly disappointing to me, especially after my husband had hyped up how good Marie Brennan's books are. It was so incredibly boring. Even though I didn't like this book, I probably will give at least the first book in her The Memoirs of Lady Trent series a try. Cold-Forged Flame is the first book in a series, but I don't foresee myself ever picking up the rest of the series with as much as I disliked this book. I've learned over the last year that with Tor.com novellas, I have a love/hate relationship. Some of them, I become obsessed with and want to read multiple times. Others, I hate. There is no in between. Unfortunately, this was one of the ones I hated. I do still plan to make my way through all of the Tor.com novellas though. There are a lot of hidden gems in there. This just wasn't one of them.


I give Cold-Forged Flame: 2/5.

Want to know more about the author?
Website: https://www.swantower.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/swan_tower

I received this book from the publisher, via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review. I was in no way compensated for this review.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

This Girl by Colleen Hoover


Synopsis:
Layken and Will’s love has managed to withstand the toughest of circumstances and the young lovers, now married, are beginning to feel safe and secure in their union. As much as Layken relishes their new life together, she finds herself wanting to know everything there is to know about her husband, even though Will makes it clear he prefers to keep the painful memories of the past where they belong. Still, he can’t resist his wife’s pleas and so he begins to untangle his side of the story, revealing for the first time his most intimate feelings and thoughts, retelling both the good and bad moments, and sharing a few shocking confessions of his own from the time when they first met.

In This Girl, Will tells the story of their complicated relationship from his point of view. Their future rests on how well they deal with the past in this final installment of the beloved Slammed series.

(Synopsis from Goodreads). 

My Thoughts:
Colleen Hoover is one of my favorite authors. If she has a new book out, I devour it one sitting. I just can't get enough of her writing. There's something magical about the way she writes. I've been trying to make my way through her backlog of books. I loved Slammed, and Point of Retreat, so I recently decided to finish the trilogy by reading This Girl. I was hesitant at first, but I ended up loving it. 

When I first read the synopsis for This Girl, I wasn't sure if I wanted to read it. I don't usually like books where the plot is re-told through another main character's point of view. However, I'm so glad I did. Yes, This Girl is Slammed, and Point of Retreat re-told through Will's point of view, but it's so much more than that. I don't even know if it's accurate to say it's re-told. Seeing things from Will's point of view is so drastically different it's almost like experiencing them for the first time. I loved getting inside his head, and learning his thought process through some of the more crucial moments in the series. 

This Girl also brings some new things that the readers didn't get a chance to see before. I don't want to give too much away because all of those new things are major spoilers for the book. I will say that it made me fall even more in love with Will and Layken. It just reinforced my belief that after everything they've been through, they are absolutely perfect for each other. Oh, and that ending! I loved this way This Girl ended. It made me bawl like a baby. I don't think there could have been a more perfect ending. 

I loved This Girl so much. Once again, Colleen Hoover has proved why she is one of my favorite authors. Her writing is just above and beyond a regular level. It transports you into the story. I really hope she writes a spin-off series, or short stories, or something about what happened after the ending of This Girl. I don't want to let these characters go. I don't want it to be over. It's like a big family that I love to interact with and be around.


I give This Girl: 5/5.

Want to know more about the author?
Website: https://www.colleenhoover.com/
facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorColleenHoover/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/colleenhoover
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/colleenhoover/
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5430144.Colleen_Hoover

I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I was in no way compensated for this review.

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

The Death Pit by A.L. Kennedy


Synopsis:
Something odd is going on at the Fetch Brothers Golf Spa Hotel. Receptionist Bryony Mailer has noticed a definite tendency towards disappearance amongst the guests. She's tried talking to the manager, she's even tried talking to the owner who lives in one of the best cottages in the grounds, but to no avail. And then a tall, loping remarkably energetic guest (wearing a fetching scarf and floppy hat) appears. The Fourth Doctor thinks he's in Chicago. He knows he's in 1978. And he also knows that if he doesn't do something very clever very soon, matters will get very, very out of hand.
(Synopsis from Goodreads).

My Thoughts:
Doctor Who has always been one of my favorite fandoms. My husband watched the first season in 2013, and kept telling me about it. At first, I didn't have too much interest in it. However, we sat down over a weekend and marathoned the first season, and by the end, I was in love. It quickly became one of my favorite obsessions. I've read most of the books now, so I always get excited when I discover one I haven't read. Recently, I discovered one of the few Time Trip books I hadn't read, The Death Pit, and knew I had to get my hands on it. I found it to be just okay.

Don't get me wrong, I did find the book enjoyable at times. It's just that I had one big problem with this. It was extremely cheesy. Now, I know that a lot of the appeal of Doctor Who is its cheesiness. I get that. Usually, that's one of the things I love about Doctor Who. However, this was over the top cheesy. For example, the way a certain character reacts to the golf pit towards the beginning drove me crazy. It was almost like terrible B-movie acting. It really took me out of the story, and made it a lot less enjoyable. It wasn't just that scene either, it happened throughout the book.

There were a couple things I liked about the book though. I liked how the author interpreted the Fourth Doctor. They gave just enough subtle hints that the reader was with Four throughout the book without shoving it in the reader's face. However, even if they wouldn't have given those hints, the reader would have been able to tell because the author wrote Four's personality really well. They captured the little quirks that are significant to Tom Baker's personality perfectly. I haven't watched a lot of episodes with the Fourth Doctor, but this book made me want to watch more. I also liked that we as fans finally got a direct, no beating around the bush answer about why the Doctor is so adverse to using guns.

When The Death Pit wasn't being terribly cheesy, I found myself enjoying it. I really loved A.L. Kennedy's interpretation of the Fourth Doctor. I hope that this author continues to write more Doctor Who stories in the future, even though I had some problems with this one. I think if their writing were to mature just a little bit, they could possibly write a brilliant Doctor Who story about Four. I am excited to do some research to see if there are any other Time Trips Doctor Who books that I may have glanced over, and not read yet.


I give The Death Pit: 3/5.

Want to know more about the author?
Website: http://www.a-l-kennedy.co.uk/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/writerer

I received this book from the publisher, via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review. I was in no way compensated for this review. 

Monday, January 8, 2018

Royal Day Out by Meg Cabot


Synopsis:
Olivia Grace Clarisse Mignonette Harrison never thought that being a real life PRINCESS OF GENOVIA could ever be boring, but with all of the new vans and paparazzi staked out in front of the palace, the whole family has been on lockdown for weeks. So when Grandmere suggests a shopping trip to buy a small present for Princess Mia, Olivia jumps at the chance—especially since the shopping trip comes with the promise of lunch at the Royal Genovian Yacht Club (makers of the best ice cream sundae in the world)! Surely nothing could go wrong with such a simple day out, could it?

A quick shopping trip with her royal Grandmere turns into a much bigger deal than Olivia Grace, the newest Princess of Genovia expected in this e-short edition to Meg Cabot's illustrated chapter book series From the Notebooks of a Middle School Princess.

(Synopsis from Goodreads).

My Thoughts:
Ever since I was a little kid, I loved The Princess Diaries series. I got hooked on the series in fourth grade, and even re-read it from time to time as an adult. It still holds the same joy for me that it did back then. Therefore, when I saw there was a new Princess Diaries series featuring a new character, I knew I had to get my hands on it. I started the series with Royal Day Out. I found it enjoyable, but had some problems with it.

I think part of the problem why Royal Day Out wasn't a five star read for me was that I read it out of order, which was my own fault. After finishing the story, I realized it was book 1.5 in the series. Most people recommend reading it after Royal Wedding, book eleven in The Princess Diaries series, which I haven't read either. Once again, that's my own fault and doesn't reflect in any way upon the book. It did make confusing at first because I had no idea what was going on, or any of Olivia's backstory. The other problem I had with this story is that Grandmere drove me nuts. Usually I find her quirky, eccentric, and charming. However, in this story, I just found her to be annoying. Most of her actions were petty, rude, and out of character. It drove me crazy.

I did really like the main character, Olivia. I enjoyed that she brought something new and fresh to The Princess Diaries series. She has a great personality. No matter what was going on around her, she was able to adjust quickly. Whether it be Grandmere's split-second decisions to leave the shop, or things that had happened at the yacht club, she was able to still have fun, and make the most of it. I also really enjoyed how she got Grandmere to think on different terms, which is hard to do. She introduced Grandmere to the term gender neutral, and really got her to think about it and accept it, which I don't think Mia would have been able to do.

Despite a couple of issues that I had with the book, I really did like Royal Day Out. I loved Olivia's character. I think it will be interesting to see what she brings to the world of The Princess Diaries. I enjoyed this book so much in fact, that I put a hold on all three of the other books in this series at my local library. I can't wait to read them, and see what other interesting adventures Olivia gets into with Grandmere, Mia, and the rest of the characters that we know and love.


I give Royal Day Out: 3/5.

Want to know more about the author?
Website: http://www.megcabot.com/
facebook: https://www.facebook.com/megcabot
Twitter: https://twitter.com/megcabot
Tumblr: http://megcabotsays.tumblr.com/
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/MegginCabot
Pintrest: https://www.pinterest.com/megcabot/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/officialmegcabot/
Google+: https://plus.google.com/117794062943087450599
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/11654.Meg_Cabot

I received this book from the publisher, via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review. I was in no way compensated for this review.

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Bonnie and the Beast by Alexa Black


Synopsis:
The Beast's castle has been lonely since an angry sorceress cursed her years ago, and she resigned herself to it a long time ago. But now a woman has promised to brave the curse, and for the first time in too many years the Beast has someone to talk to—and perhaps even break the curse. 

But tricking people into visiting your castle isn't how you find a soulmate. And looking stranger than a werewolf doesn't help.

(Synopsis from Goodreads).

My Thoughts:
Beauty and the Beast has always been one of my favorite fairytales. Every time I see a Beauty and the Beast retelling has been released, it jumps to the top of my to be read pile. Combine that with an LGBT theme, and I am all over wanting to read it. Unfortunately, it didn't turn out the way I wanted it to while reading Bonnie and the Beast, a lesbian re-telling of Beauty and the Beast. I went in with high expectations, and ended up massively disappointed. 

I don't know where to start about what went wrong with Bonnie and the Beast. There were so many things I didn't like about it. I don't typically like saying this about books, but it was pointless. It was basically just a thirty-four page sex scene. There was no plot, no character introduction, nothing that set up the story for the reader to know what was going on. There was absolutely no chemistry between the Beast and Bonnie at all. The sex scene wasn't even steamy, or hot. It was just awkward with the Beast being in her furry form. It made it difficult to read, and even gross at times.

I think if Bonnie and the Beast would have been longer, it would have been better. The story was so short that the plot couldn't properly develop. There were things that were mentioned that were briefly glossed over that I think would have been really interesting if the reader was told more about them. For example, I would have loved to learn more about how the old woman cursed the Beast, and what that curse entailed. The author kept talking about it like it was unique and something that hadn't been done in a Beauty and the Beast re-telling before. I would have also like to hear more about the Beast's interaction with the man that made a deal to have Bonnie come to her. There are a few other plot points as well that I wanted to know more about. Not getting any of that explained made for a disappointing, bland, and boring book.

I did not like Bonnie and the Beast whatsoever. It makes me sad because the book had so much potential, but it really fell flat. The author also had so much potential to really hook readers and tell an amazing story, but it never happened. I don't think I will be trying any of this author's other books in the future, based on how I felt about Bonnie and the Beast. As much as I love LGBT fairytale re-tellings, there are much better ones to read.


I give Bonnie and the Beast: 1/5.

Want to know more about the author?
Website: https://www.boldstrokesbooks.com/authors/alexa-black-255

I received this book from the publisher, via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review. I was in no way compensated for this review.

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Earth Star by Janet Edwards


Synopsis:
Sequel to Earth Girl.

18-year-old Jarra has a lot to prove. After being awarded one of the military’s highest honours for her role in a daring rescue attempt, Jarra finds herself – and her Ape status – in the spotlight. Jarra is one of the unlucky few born with an immune system that cannot survive on other planets. Derided as an ‘ape’ – a ‘throwback’ – by the rest of the universe, Jarra is on a mission to prove that Earth Girls are just as good as anyone else.

Except now the planet she loves is under threat by what could be humanity’s first ever alien contact. Jarra’s bravery – and specialist knowledge – will once again be at the centre of the maelstrom, but will the rest of the universe consider Earth worth fighting for?

(Synopsis from Goodreads).

My Thoughts:
I read Earth Girl several years ago when it first came out in the U.K. and loved it. I mean, how could I not, with one of the main characters having the same last name as me. Even though I loved it, for whatever reason I never continued with the series. Recently, I was going through my unfinished series shelf on Goodreads, and saw that the rest of the series was still on there, so I decided to pick up the second book, Earth Star. I'm so glad I did. It was absolute perfection.

Even though it had been a while since I had read Earth Girl, I was able to jump into Earth Star right away without having to re-read Earth Girl, or being lost. There were very mini recaps throughout the book on what had happened in the first book, which I really enjoyed. It made the book easier to read, and helped to fill in some of the details. In no time, I remembered everything that happened, and was able to immerse myself back into the world again, which was exciting for me because it's one of my favorite settings/worlds out of all of the books I've read. Janet Edwards has a way of writing worlds that makes the reader so immersed in the book, they feel like they are right there with Jarra, going through the dig sites and other challenges she has to face on Earth.

Speaking of Jarra, I love how much she matured in Earth Star. She had a lot thrust onto her plate. I enjoyed how she dealt with her new status, and was able to figure out how to deal with the perks and disadvantages that came with it. No matter what anyone said or did, she always held her head up high, and didn't let it get to her. I also enjoyed watching her relationships with those around her change and evolve. It was great to see her interact with her dig site teammates, and to watch them go from being teammates to friends. I love the dynamic between her and Fian. I hope it continues onto the next book. I can't wait to see their relationship go to the next level.

I thought Earth Star was the perfect sequel to Earth Girl. It had everything I wanted in the sequel, and more. I'm excited to read the final book in the series, and see where the storyline continues. I can't wait to experience more of Jarra and the rest of the crew's adventures, and see them all mature together. I also want to read more of Janet Edwards other books. I have a feeling once I finish the Earth Girl trilogy, she's going to become an automatic one-click author.


I give Earth Star: 5/5. 

Want to know more about the author?
Website: https://janetedwards.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JanetEdwardsAuthor
Twitter: https://twitter.com/JanetEdwardsSF
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5415711.Janet_Edwards

I received this book from the publisher, via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review. I was in no way compensated for this review.