Tuesday, 31 May 2016

The Pages of the Mind - Jeffe Kennedy

Magic has broken free over the Twelve Kingdoms. The population is beset by shapeshifters and portents, landscapes that migrate, uncanny allies who are not quite human…and enemies eager to take advantage of the chaos. 

Dafne Mailloux is no adventurer--she's a librarian. But the High Queen trusts Dafne's ability with languages, her way of winnowing the useful facts from a dusty scroll, and even more important, the subtlety and guile that three decades under the thumb of a tyrant taught her. 

Dafne never thought to need those skills again. But she accepts her duty. Until her journey drops her into the arms of a barbarian king. He speaks no tongue she knows but that of power, yet he recognizes his captive as a valuable pawn. Dafne must submit to a wedding of alliance, becoming a prisoner-queen in a court she does not understand. If she is to save herself and her country, she will have to learn to read the heart of a wild stranger. And there are more secrets written there than even Dafne could suspect…

My thoughts:
It's Lucky for Dafne that she is a smart cookie because she sure needs it here, all alone on an island with strange people and a man making bedroom eyes at her.

Dafne is sent an a diplomatic mission to a chain of islands. But all things are not as they seem, and suddenly she is married, or is she? So hard to figure out what people are saying when you do not speak the language. And the people are strange, their king is strange. An Dafne, well I was all go for it woman! She has never loved, this is a great chance, you know a hot king wants you. But she is all, I have a duty to my queen! Silly woman.

And as I said all is not as it seems. There is magic on this island, and mysteries. Ones that can be solved by a librarian. Woot! Librarian powers to the rescue!

As for their dance, it was quite the dance. He wants her, but he also seems to need her..in another way too. She does find him hot (who wouldn't), but this is so so wrong. So they do their little dance, have difficulties understanding each other, grow closer and insert a bit of drama and hot headed idiots and you have your story.

By the way, the next book is Jepp's and Kral's and I can not wait. She has quite the mouth on her, how he could ever rein her in I do not know.

Back to these lovers. I am intrigued by the secrets revealed and can not wait to learn more.
Again, Ursula and A should totally be able to have babies! That still makes me sad, I hope it changes.

And once again back to the book.

Conclusion;
A lovely fantasy romance. 

Cover
Nice

Paperback, 432 pages
Expected publication: May 31st 2016 by Kensington
The Uncharted Realms #1, The Twelve Kingdoms #4
Fantasy romance
For review


Monday, 30 May 2016

For Crown and Kingdom - Jeffe Kennedy and Grace Draven


A duo of fantasy romances
Out tomorrow




Dafne Mailloux, librarian and temporary babysitter to the heirs to the High Throne of the Twelve – now Thirteen – Kingdoms, finds it difficult to leave the paradise of Annfwn behind. Particularly that trove of rare books in temptingly unfamiliar languages. But duty calls, and hers is to the crown. It’s not like her heart belongs elsewhere. But how can she crown a queen who hesitates to take the throne? 

My thoughts:
I know this was your story Dafne, but I was all about the rest and the whole omg, will they never be able to marry? No one is having babies!
Saaaaaaaaaaaaaadness! And since the next book is about Dafne, that is just, sad you know. No one gets to share their love, well except for Andi. No one is having babies, except for Ami. Now I am sad. 

Now when I have that off my chest. This is about Ursula having doubts, others having doubts about her taking the High Crown (to me it would be better if everyone took care of their own business and cut the high stuff.) And it's about who will take over after her.

And it is about seers making hints that maybe Dafne has a future too. Yay, I can not wait. Especially since book 4s blurb sure seems interesting. No, it has nothing to do with that premise that I love, fine, yes it has everything to do with that premise.
(edit, reading this later and I have NO idea what I am talking about)

This is mostly a talking and thinking story. Trying to put the kingdom back together. I just want everyone to be happy though.

Kindle Edition
Expected publication: May 31st 2016
The Twelve Kingdoms #3.6
Fantasy romance
For review

The stories are told in whispers, even after so long:  of a man whose fair rule soured when he attained eternal youth.  Imprisoned by a sorceress wife in a city out of time and place, he has passed into legend.  Few believe in him, and fewer would set their hopes on his mercy.  But Imogen has no choice.  To break the curse that’s isolated her since birth, she’ll find the Undying King—and answer his secrets with her own…

My thoughts:
This should so have been a book! I mean, the ending, was a solid ending, BUT there is danger and I am all then what? More!

Imogen is the daughter of a witch, who is dying, and with her last breath the witch sends Imogen to find the Undying King.

I liked Ceneda, he was so amused by this strange woman showing up in his dead city and calling in a debt.

Duh, of course they start to fall for each other. I liked hearing his story first, that would be quite a book, but I am sure I would not like him. Now, he has mellowed. A bit. And Imogen was so nice. They fit each other well.

But alas there is danger too!

Should totally be a book, or another novella.

Good


Ebook, 150ish pages
Expected publication: May 31st 2016
Fantasy romance
For review

..............................................

Ok so that was that duology, but I have this other Kennedy book, that I did review in an anthology, but well here it is again since I had it here to fill space when I did not have the above novella yet, but I then I got it today and read it, and well why delete the other one.



A Story of The Twelve Kingdoms
Nix is nothing. The Princess Natilde—her former waiting woman—attacked her on the journey to wed Prince Cavan, stripping her of everything and taking her place. With no serving skills, Nix becomes a goose girl. Perhaps if Nix keeps her promise never to reveal who she really is, Natilde won’t carry out her vile threats. Prince Cavan entered his arranged marriage determined to have a congenial, if not loving relationship with his future queen—for the sake of both their kingdoms. But, his wife repels him more each day and he finds himself absurdly drawn to the lovely Nix.

With broken vows, anguish and dark secrets between them, Cavan and Nix struggle to find the magic to restore what’s gone terribly wrong… if it ever can be. 

My thoughts:
First, I read this in an anthology so this review is short! Cos I had a lot of other books to talk about.

It was really good and all, but I just read another retelling of the goose girl (like last week), so I was never surprised.

But Natilde is a bitch! And go Nyx!

This takes place in the twelve kingdoms world, but has nothing to do with that trilogy.

ebook
Published March 7th 2016 by Brightlynx Publishing
The Twelve Kingdoms #3.5
Fantasy
Own



Sunday, 29 May 2016

Joint Discussion: Red Rising - Pierce Brown


This month Carole and I will be discussing "Red Rising" by Pierce Brown
Author: Pierce Brown
Title: Red Rising (Red Rising #1)
Genre: Sci-FI, Fantasy, & YA
Pages: ebook
First Published: January 28th 2014
Where I Got It: Borrowed from library

Darrow is a Red, a member of the lowest caste in the color-coded society of the future. Like his fellow Reds, he works all day, believing that he and his people are making the surface of Mars livable for future generations.

Yet he spends his life willingly, knowing that his blood and sweat will one day result in a better world for his children.

But Darrow and his kind have been betrayed. Soon he discovers that humanity already reached the surface generations ago. Vast cities and sprawling parks spread across the planet. Darrow—and Reds like him—are nothing more than slaves to a decadent ruling class.

Inspired by a longing for justice, and driven by the memory of lost love, Darrow sacrifices everything to infiltrate the legendary Institute, a proving ground for the dominant Gold caste, where the next generation of humanity's overlords struggle for power. He will be forced to compete for his life and the very future of civilization against the best and most brutal of Society's ruling class. There, he will stop at nothing to bring down his enemies... even if it means he has to become one of them to do so.  



B: Ok, let us begin. I can start. First I just HAVE to complain..I mean really have to. See for me the first 100 pages were pure torture. It was such a DNF. I had been trying to read it for days and then came today when we were supposed to do this and I had read...20 pages! Yikes. So skimmed most of those first 100 boring pages. Then half skimmed the next 50, then after 150 it picked up somewhat, like to Grade 2 territory. Then after 200 it started to get semi interesting. Them after 250 I sat down and paid attention and it ended with a bang. But really, if this had been a normal book for a normal day then it would have been a DNF! However got it got to be in the end.  You? ;)


C: I honestly didn’t have a hard time. I actually enjoyed the first 200 pages! I enjoyed the slow journey and then everything exploded once they were forced to battle and all that. Yes, the beginning was slow, but I liked it. However….some things seemed SO ridiculous at times. Like the “Passage”. 


B: I guess the Golds are just fucked up people. But I really do not get how the can function as a society. If I made it through the passage fine, but then, the rest, there were rapes. One would think women would not want to send their daughters their, or fathers their sons. If I made it through I would have just gone killer crazy when I graduated. And no one does? Damn, people would have to pay, in blood!


C: Precisely! They tried to compare themselves to the Spartans, but hell, Spartans still have rules and didn’t have half the crazy notions the Golds do. It just seems….crazy. If I was part of this world I would wanna be a Pink or something. Too much for “power”. 


B: But weren’t all pinks whores? I think I would want to be Green, creativity, at least that would get people off my back. I could never be red. Golds are insane. Green I do not know them, but yikes, what a world.


C: I can’t remember who the Greens really were….I would need to learn more. I know for sure I do not want to be a Red or a Gold. Being a Pink (aka prostitute/whore) would be the best of the three until I learn more about the negatives of the other colors not really discussed. Yeah…..poor Darrow. 


B: I know not all Golds go through that horrible horrible place. But as a parent I would not want my kid there to become some crazy mofo. 

Also, the Reds, I know the upper management makes them marry young, but hello, if you want more kids then the answer is not to marry at 14. Bodies are not really meant for that and if you want like 20 new slaves then like wait a bit. 


C: Yeah. Agreed. My question is…..how did the higher-ups keep the city a secret from the LowReds. How? I don’t get it. There are a lot of people flying around...it just seems impossible. 


B: I could believe if it had been a generation or so, but hundreds of years? And no one spilled the beans? No, I can not believe that. I just can not


C: There were a lot of things I questioned….lots of plot holes for my liking. Maybe some of these will be answered in the next book(s). I think this is my only complaint about this book. The journey was fun, the characters interesting, the storyline addicting, but the plotholes? Too many for me. 


B: My complaint, make that complaints, are of course it was so boring, oh my god, so effing boring in the start. I did not care. I do not even know why he was taken prisoner, I just did not care. I only got into it when the killing started, yes, I am dark. But it went from blergh to interesting when they tried to build their effed up society and some did realise the flaws. Like that matters. And that end, BOOM! Oh yes, that was a good one. That made me want to read the next book, I just hope the beginning will not drag there too, I just can not handle that


C: I think it’s funny we disagree on this. ;) But yeah - the best part was for sure the killing and darker part. I think it’s insane how seriously they all took this “schooling”. WTF? It is like High School on steroids! I can’t even fathom what is going to happen the next. I do want to read the next book, but I am scared it won’t be as good. There are three books. I feel the events in the second one will be bleh, while the last book will be epic. 


B: And that is why we are not Golds..well actually those pixie golds would more be my thing. I’d eat cake and more cake and could not stop. Let the rest kill themselves stupid buggers. 

Let me think, I should say something more. Damn that end was epic, I can not get over it. If the book had been all way through like that then it would have been a 4. Now it’s a mercy 3 because of a boring dnf beginning.


 Oh oh let’s read all 3 together. Mouwhahahahahahahahahaha


C: LOLLLL a pixie gold wouldn’t be a bad fate. I must say kuddos to the author...he took the story to a whole different level and direction!! I expected more politics and etc….not death and war and the like. Major kuddos. YES. The ending was good! Loved it and totally worth the “slower” parts ;). We should read the next one together! I’m game. 


B: Before me go, I have to mention the whole, any book where kids are killed is compared to the hunger games. For me the hunger games was a sweet silly book where kids killed each other to survive..ahem. But this, these kids were sociopaths, I mean wtf! The raping, murdering, butchering, torture, some did it for fun! This was not a Hunger games book, more like Battle Royale.


C: Well - I have not read the Hunger Games books….I have seen the first movie *ducks behind barricade* This really is a Hunger Games meets Mad Max meets 1984. Dark and bloody.


B: Ha, we have most talked about one thing, but that is a discussion for you :) So the end?


C: Well, it's hard to really talk about other things without MAJOR spoilers ya know? LOL. But yes, the end. ^_^


B: Until next time then my lady


C: *Waves* Who’s turn is it next?


B: This was my pick, so you


C: *dives behind barricade again* OH NO!! Wish me luck!


B: Do NOT mess it up!


C: 0_0





Saturday, 28 May 2016

#FitReaders Check-In: May 27, 2016 and Historical romance x3

#FitReaders is hosted by Geeky Bloggers Book Blog  and That’s What I’m Talking About.
Join in!

Sun 12 km bike
Mon  22 km bike
Tue  4 km bike, 30 min walk
Wed  4 km bike, 30 min walk
Thu  10 km bike, 30 min walk
Fri 4 km bike, 30 min walk
Sat 1 h walk, 4 km bike



.........................

Artemisia Dalrymple Pelham-Smythe doesn’t give two figs for the ton’s opinions on propriety. She wants to be taken seriously as an artist, so the widowed Duchess of Southwycke is painting the entire Roman pantheon in glorious nudes. The man who arrived to pose for her is far too muscular and virile to fit her vision of a cherubic Cupid, so she’ll simply turn him into Mars.

Trevelyn Deveridge never expected to pose naked to serve Queen and country, but the trail of the elusive Mr. Beddington leads right to the door of the duchess. Unless Trev retrieves Beddington’s key, a whole string of operatives in India are in danger of discovery. Since he’s convinced Her Grace can point him in the right direction, he's left with little choice but to play along with her artistic endeavors.

Besides, when a lady asks a gentleman to disrobe, how can he refuse? 

My thoughts:
Oh those spies in historical romance ;)

Artemisia is an artist and paints nekkid men, fine, nudes ;) They are still naked whatever you call it missy. So you can understand if the Ton is shocked, but she is a Duchess and she does not give a F*ck what they think.

Trevelyn is a spy, a second son, and at the moment posing naked in front of a Duchess and pretending he is a nobody. He was rather cocky, I mean hello, she only paints men! She does not sleep with them, and he is all I know you want this! *eyeroll* She should have slapped him and sent him on his way. But alas this is a romance so she gives in.

But oh no, drama!

Oh no, there is a key and people after it.

And then they lived happily ever after.

Nice 

Kindle Edition, 230 pages
Published April 9th 2012 by Ten Talents Press (first published February 26th 2008)
How to #1
Historical romance
Own

Violet Winterbottom is a quiet girl. She speaks six languages, but seldom raises her voice. She endured bitter heartbreak in perfect silence. The gentlemen aren't beating down her door.

Until the night of the Spindle Cove Christmas ball, when a mysterious stranger crashes into the ballroom and collapses at Violet's feet. His coarse attire and near-criminal good looks would put any sensible young lady on her guard. He's wet, chilled, bleeding, and speaking in an unfamiliar tongue.

Only Violet understands him. And she knows he's not what he seems.

She has one night to draw forth the secrets of this dangerously handsome rogue. Is he a smuggler? A fugitive? An enemy spy? She needs answers by sunrise, but her captive would rather seduce than confess. To learn his secrets, Violet must reveal hers and open herself to adventure, passion, and the unthinkable... Love.

My thoughts:
I do like Tessa Dare, but, it was ok, just ok. This was one of those examples where it should have been a book.

I did not really get the way he acted with her.
She was too nice.
I did not really get why the truth was just not told. Someone could have died!
And even though it takes place during just one night there was still passion....no, too fast!

Just ok

ebook, 113 pages
Published November 15th 2011 by Samhain Publishing
Spindle Cove #1.5
Historical romance
Own

The lives of Sir Bartlett Crosby and Hannah Chandler have been marked by fierce competition between their elite families...the perfect breeding ground for a mutual attraction neither can deny.

Bart hopes to conquer "the turf" through victory in a much-touted match. Should his heavily-favored colt win, the Crosby reputation and fortunes would be revived. Bart's plan seems poised for success until the lovely Hannah Chandler, daughter of a noted rival trainer, turns up claiming ownership of the colt. When Hannah insists on claiming her purchase, the prize colt disappears from Bart's stable. Theft or treachery? As Hannah and Bart rush to solve the mystery before race time, they uncover a scandalous truth about their families' pasts-a truth that has the potential to either destroy both their futures, or to guide them to a love they never imagined. 

My thoughts:
I was having a bad novella day. See, I like her books, but no, this one was just ok. It was a case of should have been a book.

Hannah and Bart meet, they are enemies, but look at that. They will fall fast in love.
While looking for a horse
Horses and races are boring...yup
It was too fast! I wanted more drama,

Ok

Kindle Edition, 120 pages
Published November 3rd 2015 by Sourcebooks Casablanca
Romance of the Turf 0.5
Historical romance
Own


Friday, 27 May 2016

Early review: Memories of Ash - Intisar Khanani

In the year since she cast her sunbolt, Hitomi has recovered only a handful of memories. But the truths of the past have a tendency to come calling, and an isolated mountain fastness can offer only so much shelter. When the High Council of Mages summons Brigit Stormwind to stand trial for treason, Hitomi knows her mentor won’t return—not with Arch Mage Blackflame behind the charges.

Armed only with her magic and her wits, Hitomi vows to free her mentor from unjust imprisonment. She must traverse spell-cursed lands and barren deserts, facing powerful ancient enchantments and navigating bitter enmities, as she races to reach the High Council. There, she reunites with old friends, planning a rescue equal parts magic and trickery.

If she succeeds, Hitomi will be hunted the rest of her life. If she fails, she’ll face the ultimate punishment: enslavement to the High Council, her magic slowly drained until she dies.

My thoughts:
Hitomi does not have it easy in this book. She still suffers from the sunbolt. She is slowly getting her memories back. She is learning magic, but if anyone finds her they will hunt her down. And then they come for Bridgit, whom she lives with. All alone again, what will she do? She really is cursed.

So I get the whole rogue thing, but, I mean Bridgit is teaching her now, could she just not just become one of them? I do not really get why she is still bad then? Why would she have to be like killed or drained of power? She is not a rogue, she has a teacher. These people are just MEAN.

But let's move away from that. This is a book where Hitomi tries to get her teacher back. Where she finds herself again. Where we meet some old friends, and new friends. And I find myself curious about the next book and a certain thing. And then there was that other thing I am SO curious about too. I so want to know THAT thing. But we have to wait until book 3, but I am soooo curious!

Hitomi is not particularly kick-ass in the ass kicking aspect, she is a thinker. She waits, she plans. And she is kind.

Oh...I miss Val. Val is awesome. I have a Val crush.

Conclusion:
I look forward to more


Kindle Edition, 359 pages
Expected publication: May 30th 2016 by Purple Monkey Press
The Sunbolt Chronicles #2
YA FANTASY
For review


Thursday, 26 May 2016

The Fairest of them all - Cathy Maxwell

The penniless orphan of a disreputable earl, Lady Charlene Blanchard thrives on the adventure of picking the pockets of unsavory gentlemen to survive. But due to her extraordinary beauty and prized bloodlines, she is hand-chosen as a potential bride for the Duke of Baynton, who is on the hunt for a suitable wife to provide heirs. All Char has to do is act the part she was born to play and charm a duke she’s never laid eyes on into proposing. Except the duke turns out to be the tall, dark and sexy stranger who just caught her red-handed as a thief! 

Or is he? Jack Whitridge is the duke’s twin who had “gone missing” over ten years ago. Now back in England, he knows that the supposed Lady who has his brother’s love is hardly duchess material—except he needs her to save his adopted country from war. He is willing to bargain with her heart, until he finds himself falling for Char . . .  

My thoughts:
First, poor poor Duke of Daynton! Ok so I have not read book 1 and see how he was there, but he lost his fiancee there to another man..his brother.

And here, omg, poor Duke! He is loosing again!

You all know the premise. Pretty girl to marry a Duke, but she falls for his brother. And most of the time in those books I do not feel that bad. I am all they are meant to be! Or, he is an idiot! Or, something else. But here, I felt really really bad for him. First he seemed like such a sweetie. Yes he was awkward, strict, cos his dad was so tough with him and he had to be so perfect. And yes he makes mistakes, but then he tells this secrets and my heart melted, and broke at the same time. I just wanted to hug him.

And look, half this review has been about my crush on a certain Duke. But seriously, when he tells that secret, you will want to hug him..and marry him.


I should say something about Charlene and Jack...but someone else just stole the spotlight!

Charlene picks pockets. Jack is the Duke's long lost brother. He has been staying in America. These two meet and later meet again, alas it is too late and she is promised to another. But they want each other, they learn to know each other...all while another heart is breaking. That would be mine, cos Char should totally have picked a certain other brother. Ok fine, fine, she will be really happy with Jack. They are perfect for each other. And the next book will be about the Duke, and I know his match now. They will fit each other, still, saaaad! Poor Duke *hugs him*

I have never talked about a side character this much before, I might have a crush.

Conclusion:
But hey, the book was good, even if the poor Duke was again heartbroken.

Cover
nice

ebook, 384 pages
Expected publication: May 31st 2016 by Avon
Marrying the Duke #2
Historical romance
NG


Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Hot Cowboy Nights -Carolyn Brown

If gossip is the lifeblood of a small town, then Lizzy Logan has been its beating heart. After being dumped by her fiancé for another woman, she could have decided to crawl under a rock. But no, she'd rather really set tongues wagging by "moving on" with one of the hottest cowboys in Texas, who happens to live next door at the Lucky Penny Ranch. Those busybodies don't have to know it's actually all pretend. And just because Lizzy has no aim to tame her wild, blue-eyed neighbor doesn't mean she can't enjoy the ride of her life. Toby Dawson never was and never will be the settling-down type. But what harm could there be in agreeing to be Lizzy's pretend boyfriend? They'll put on a show for a few weeks and be done. Yet the more he gets to know Lizzy-really know her-the harder it is for him to keep his hands off of her in private. Soon this rough-and-ready cowboy is hoping to heal Lizzy's bruised heart and turn their fake affair into a true romance . . . 

My thoughts:
Brown's books are so sweet! And that is why I adore them. The heroines are so sassy, and the heroes are so rrrrrr!

Lizzy has been doing the nasty with her neighbor Toby, but hey they can't be doing it forever. It was fun while it lasted.

Like it ever is that easy. See she needs a fake bf to show peeps she is moving on. Oh girl, that is more trouble than solution! In comes Toby.

But dang! Oh this town, it had me so mad. Like a raccoon caught with it's tail in cactus (I always try this, but I never get them right, Brown gets them right.!) See there are these horrid gossiping church ladies who are all "That man is bad business, you be a sinner now Lizzy. Shame on you." Lizzy stands her ground, but oh those church ladies, I would have slapped them. She is a bigger person than I am. Especially since one's son is no good either, do not thrown stones in a glass house lady! So that is the drama, gossiping old biddies. 

And then of course Toby and Lizzy will fall in love when they realise their fake relationship could be more. It is sweet and wonderful.

I look forward to Toby's cousin's book now.

Conclusion:
Sweet!

Kindle Edition. 400
Expected publication: May 31st 2016 by Forever
Lucky Penny Ranch #2
Contemporary romance
NG


Tuesday, 24 May 2016

Fantasy Tuesday: An Ember in The Ashes and Wedding bells, magic spells

What if you were the spark that could ignite a revolution?

For years Laia has lived in fear. Fear of the Empire, fear of the Martials, fear of truly living at all. Born as a Scholar, she’s never had much of a choice.

For Elias it’s the opposite. He has seen too much on his path to becoming a Mask, one of the Empire’s elite soldiers. With the Masks’ help the Empire has conquered a continent and enslaved thousands, all in the name of power.

When Laia’s brother is taken she must force herself to help the Resistance, the only people who have a chance of saving him. She must spy on the Commandant, ruthless overseer of Blackcliff Academy. Blackcliff is the training ground for Masks and the very place that Elias is planning to escape. If he succeeds, he will be named deserter. If found, the punishment will be death.

But once Laia and Elias meet, they will find that their destinies are intertwined and that their choices will change the fate of the Empire itself.

In the ashes of a broken world one person can make a difference. One voice in the dark can be heard. The price of freedom is always high and this time that price might demand everything, even life itself. 

My thoughts:
I was pleasantly surprised by this book. Fine I admit, I have YA prejudices, but they tend to be so sweet and blarghhh, Even the fantasy, and then you go but that one is not nice...trust me, they are all nice, even the killing ones.

And then there was the I am scared of triangles and it sure looked like there could be one. But no, I do not count this as that. For it to be a triangle everyone has to you know like each other. Here we have a boy and girl who are bffs, and then the boy meets another girl. Nope, not a triangle. Then I worried that the girl would meet someone, but just cos someone fancies her again does not a triangle make. 

So those were my fears. And to my surprised I got sucked in at once. Sure a lot of people get killed but I would not call it dark, but there is the thing it's not light and romance focused either. No bleeding hearts and angsty drama that takes over the fantasy.

We have Elias who have been drilled to be a perfect solider all his life, but he has doubts and wants to run away. Which will get him killed. I liked his world, the mindless soldiers who only kill, and the Commander, who is a really "lovely" sociopath, she does not give a f about others. Just perfection. She will kill you for looking at her wrong.

Then we have Laia. Ok, so this was the weak spot. But the Commander is a ruthless bitch who whips her! *yawns* Every other slave gets raped, and we are told Laia is pretty much the hottest slave around and no one rapes her. Not that I want that, in adult or YA! But it's a weak spot. Not to mention that the other slave has only one eye, and  the Commander really should have marred Laia's face too. But we can't have that. Instead we will have marks on places you can not see. I would rather have had something like no rapes the Commander's slaves! She wants no bastards or slow working girls. Then it would have makes sense. Now I just focused on this stupid thing, and I have mentioned the r thing too much but damn it, do not mention it as the first thing then when Laia becomes a slave thatslaves are always subjected to that, and then say she is way too beautiful for a slave.

But let's say she was lucky, good for her.
It's a good world, I got the feel of it even if I had some questions that should have been answered. But that is for other books. And I sure hope the next one is not a weak one, because ...let's have hope.

And the world is going to hell...always a good thing. Though I can't see how the Resistance is much of a force, that could have been done better.

Conclusion:
All in all, a great book that kept me reading. I look forward to more 

Cover: ugly

Hardcover, 450 pages
Published June 4th 2015 by Harper Voyager
An Ember in the Ashes #1
Fantasy
Library

You would think that after having successfully destroyed the Saghred (aka, a legendary soul-sucking rock) and sending an evil goblin demigod to the Lower Hells that I would get some time off to plan my wedding to my sexy paladin fiancé Mychael Eiliesor, right? Wrong. Not only do I have to brace for meeting Mychael’s parents and cope with my burgeoning new powers, but it seems there may be another calamity brewing.

After the recent change in goblin leadership, the new—thankfully non-psychotic—king is willing to participate in an elf/goblin/human peace treaty. The Isle of Mid is the site of these delicate negotiations, meaning all hands on deck for Mychael and his Conclave Guardians. When the head of elven intelligence (and my wedding guest) Duke Markus Sevelien is nearly assassinated upon his arrival, I suspect my mother-in-law will be the least of my concerns. Sabotaging these talks may be only the first salvo in a treacherous and deadly new apocalyptic plot! 

My thoughts:
It's not the best time to read a book when you are cranky as hell, but at least it took my minds if things...for a few seconds, and then I was cranky again.

Anyway....Raine should be with Taaaam! Team Tam!!!! But no, she is marrying Mychael, always go with the nice elf. Noo, go with the goblin! Alas those days are over, but in my mind she in Tam will have goblin babies one day. I am so bad ;)

But before they can get married she must meet the inlaws *music of doom*
And they must meet her pirate family *music of doom*
She must deal with the after affects of the Sanghred *music of doom*
Someone is trying to kill everyone *music of doom*
And something bigger is coming...no music of doom, just a note to the author to write more books. pretty please.

Conclusion:
It was fun to see Raine and the gang again, and seriously, one more book is so needed. Just one more. 

Cover
Nice

Paperback, 312 pages
Published February 16th 2016 by NLA Digital LLC
Raine Benares #7
Fantasy
Own


Monday, 23 May 2016

The Medusa Chronicles - Stephen Baxter and Alastair Reynolds

Following an accident that almost cost him his life, Howard Falcon was not so much saved as he was converted, through the use of prosthetics, into something faster, stronger and smarter ...but also slightly less human and more machine than he was. And with this change came an opportunity - that of piloting a mission into Jupiter's atmosphere, and ultimately of making first contact with the life forms he discovers there. Picking up the threads of humanity versus artificial intelligences and machines, and of encounters with the alien, this collaborative novel between two superb writers is a sequel to Howard Falcon's adventures. A proper science fiction adventure, this is perfect for fans of Golden Age SF as well as the modern SF reader. 

My thoughts:
I have never read Alastair Reynolds so I can't say a lot about him, but I have tried a Stephen Baxter book and I must say it felt very Baxter like.

It is the story of Howard Falcon, through out centuries, as he just lives on, watches and plays a part. Because after a crash he is now not human, not machine. Trusted and mistrusted by other humans as they spread out and settle on planets.

It's not one of those stories where you are told this and that happened. Nope, we get to see him visit a planet. 200 years later we get to see him doing something else. There are big jumps in time and while seeing that we also see the rise and fall of others. Shimps. The machines. Humans...

Jupiter had an interesting eco-system.....you will see.

It is hard to explain this book. Each story can stand on its own, even though they are tales from his life and they should of course be read like that since it is a book, but you get the idea. And they are interesting. He is a good character to follow, there is a sadness to him, he is one of a kind, there was never anyone like him. Or would ever be.

Conclusion:
A fascinating story. I like that how far we make it, we are still humans, and that is not always a good thing.

On another note, I should read more Baxter, and try Reynolds


Paperback, 327 pages
Published May 8th 2016 by Gollancz
Sci.fi
For review


Sunday, 22 May 2016

Carole's Sunday Review: Cloaked in Secrecy - TF Walsh

Author: TF Walsh
Titles: Cloaked in Secrecy
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Pages: Ebook
First Published: March 2016
Where I Got It: On my shelf (given to me by an author/publisher for my honest and unbiased opinion)

Death has followed Alena Novac’s circus family for years. When the police arrest her brother for a murder he didn’t commit, she has only a week to rescue him before he transforms into his wolf form in prison and exposes their wulfkin existence to the world.


Enre Ulf, a former member of the Varlac, the fearsome ruling wulfkin clan, plans to infiltrate Alena’s circus clan and take out their alpha to save his home in Transylvania. Except he never expected his wolf claiming Alena as his mate, or feeling compelled to save her brother to help protect the secrets of the wulfkin.



With the police closing in and the blood feud threatening them, Alena and Enre must overcome their pasts to save their packs’ futures.


This is the second installment of this series. The first book was amazing and I loved the world. The world continues as they switch to Enre's and Alena's POV. I'm happy to see that Enre does get some sort of happy ending, because he did get kinda screwed in the last one when his ex picked a human over him. Certainly a blow to his furry ego. 


I was really worried at first, because I thought this was going to be a super insta-love story because they made-out within the first couple of chapters. However, it was just lust. Then Alena learned who was related to and was MAD, because she hates the Varlac due to something they did a while back. GOOD. I didn't want an insta-love with these two. Lust, fine. Love? No. Too much drama going on for that nonsense. 



I adored Nic. Gah, I felt bad for him! 



Honestly....I'm not sure if I liked Alena or not. Sure, I'm glad Enre has somebody, because I loved him...but Alena herself? Mmhmmmmm, she annoyed me a lot of the time. 



The story started off fast and there was a lot going on, then it stalled out for a bit. It took a few chapters to get the locomotive moving again and then I was hooked. I finished this in the matter of a couple sessions. I simply love this world! The location is certainly refreshing and enjoyable. 



I can't wait for more from this author and this world! This could be read as a stand alone, but I feel to understand the character, Enre, and the world, the first one should be read. Out of five stars, I stamp this with 4 stars. 






Saturday, 21 May 2016

#FitReaders Check-In: May 20, 2016 and 2 reviews

#FitReaders is hosted by Geeky Bloggers Book Blog  and That’s What I’m Talking About.
Join in!



Sun 4,4 km
Mon  4 km bike, 40 min walk
Tue  4 km bike, 30 min walk
Wed  4 km bike, 30 min walk
Thu  4 km bike, 30 min walk
Fri 4 km bike, 30 min walk
Sat 1 h walk



,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

What do a cynical former Marine and a sheltered former Olympic contender have in common?

Nothing.

Absolutely nothing.

He has a girlfriend and she’s never been kissed.

He’s sullenly sarcastic and she’s earnestly empathetic.

He can’t stop thinking about her.

She knows she should keep her distance.

Nevertheless, when opposites ...more

My thoughts:
I have only read one book in this series, but I enjoyed that one. And this one is the prequel to book 4. That is, this novella takes place 15 years earlier than the events in that one. It is tadaa, an origin story. The story of how Greg and Fiona met.

Fiona was a hermit, until her roommate dragged her out. She is a virgin, unkissed and had had cancer.
Greg is a former marine, older, and has a girlfriend.
They talk.
There will be a breakup.
There will be a new romance.
And then they lived happily ever after.

It was cute. I did like the way they argued but at the same time, damn, ok so this dorm is filled with smart kids who argue their points? Eeeeh, that was quite a discussion,

Conclusion:
Anyway, cute.

Kindle Edition, 194 pages
Published November 21st 2015 by Caped Publishing
Knitting in the City #4.75'
Contemporary romance
Own

When Lila Moore inherits her grandfather's house, she finds herself in a small Midwestern town where margarine is never an acceptable substitution for butter, a coveted family recipe can serve as currency, and the friend who will take your darkest secrets to the grave will still never give you the secret to her prize-winning begonias. 

Lila is charmed by the people of Auburn, from the blue-eyed lawyer with the southern drawl to the little old lady who unceasingly tries to set Lila up with her grandson. But when strange things begin to happen, Lila realizes some of her new friends are guarding a secret like it's a precious family heirloom. It's a dangerous secret, and it has come back to haunt them. Lila is caught in the middle, and her life may depend on uncovering it. But even if she can, can she stay in Auburn when not everyone is what they seem, and even the house wants her gone? 

My thoughts:
I did not expect the mystery that turned more into romantic suspense in some ways, cos it got to be really dangerous. There was also this sort of paranormal thing, and then not. Hidden in a corner, and it was good, but not what I expected.

Lila inherits a house and so begin our story. Like why did her granddad leave? What was up with her aunt's marriage? Should Lila go on a date with Max who annoys her or a certain sexy lawyer? What about those gossiping ladies, what are they up to?
Btw, gossiping ladies rock!
I never did find out why someone was an asshat.
The townspeople are really nice.
Lots of baking.
Slow building romance.
Why is the pond strange?
And what is the big mystery?
*music of doom*

Conclusion:
I enjoyed it.

Kindle Edition, 216 pages
Published 2014
The Obituary Society #1
Contemporary romance /womens fic /rom sup
Own


Friday, 20 May 2016

UF Friday: Murder of Crows and Owl and the city of Angels

After winning the trust of the terra indigene residing in the Lakeside Courtyard, Meg Corbyn has had trouble figuring out what it means to live among them. As a human, Meg should be barely tolerated prey, but her abilities as a cassandra sangue make her something more.

The appearance of two addictive drugs has sparked violence between the humans and the Others, resulting in the murders of both species in nearby cities. So when Meg has a dream about blood and black feathers in the snow, Simon Wolfgard—Lakeside's shape-shifting leader—wonders whether their blood prophet dreamed of a past attack or of a future threat.

As the urge to speak prophecies strikes Meg more frequently, trouble finds its way inside the Courtyard. Now the Others and the handful of humans residing there must work together to stop the man bent on reclaiming their blood prophet—and stop the danger that threatens to destroy them all. 

My thoughts:
I did like this one better than book 1, I had to read my first review and it seems I thought she was a speshul snowflake. I am over that now.

Mostly I was all, get it on!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Seriously, get it on! But then she is effed up, and he thinks she is meat. Ohhh, who wouldn't love that!
I so want them to hook up, I really like Simon. He call her his squeaky toy, awwww. He wonders why he even likes her.

Meg, she is tolerable I guess.

But I am in this for the story, and for Simon and for the rest! The Others rule, and why they stand humans I do not know. We just disappoint. They should kill all humans, they are really a waste of good Others space.

Oh...I have said nothing about the story, well Meg sees things, the blood prophets must be dealt with. Humans suck! Wipe them out!

Conclusion;
I'd read more for sure.
They need to get it on!

Kindle Edition, 369 pages
Published March 4th 2014 by Roc
The Others #2
Urban fantasy
own

The wild second adventure for unforgettable antiquities thief Owl—a modern-day “Indiana Jane” who reluctantly navigates the hidden supernatural world—from the pen of rising urban fantasy star Kristi Charish. For fans of Kim Harrison, Jim Butcher, Jennifer Estep, Jenn Bennett, and the like.

Alix Hiboux, better known as Owl, international antiquities thief for hire, is settling into her new contract job for Vegas mogul Mr. Kurosawa, a red dragon with a penchant for ancient, supernatural artifacts. And now he has his sights set on some treasures of the mysterious Syrian City of the Dead that are sitting in a recluse’s private collection.

There’s just one wrinkle. To stop the resurrection of an undead army that could wreak havoc on Los Angeles, Owl must break into a heavily guarded archaeological sight in one of the most volatile regions in the world. A detour through Libya and a run-in with Somali pirates sends the clock ticking hastily toward total paranormal disaster.

Meanwhile, Alexander and the Paris vampires have stopped stalking Owl’s apartment, but they have by no means forgotten their death grudge against her. To top everything off, Owl finds out the hard way that there is nothing heavenly about the City of Angels...

My thoughts:
I was so happy to see this one on a site I buy my books from, since book 1 could not be found there. It was also really weird to read it after having listened to book 1. I found myself missing the narrator, also, so weird to see the names in writing! ;)

But let us begin.

Alix is hunting treasures for her dragon boss.
She is getting closer with Rynn, but still he is an incubi, can they really be happy?
Captain is the best cat side kick a girl can have!
Nadia is just there...poor Nadia, she needs to do more.
Carpe, well every girl needs an elf buddy to play online games with.

The hunt is on. She needs to find something. And the IAA is after her. It sucks to be her.

Conclusion:
This series is fun, great characters, action and humour.

Cover
Something is off

PaperbackCanadian Export Edition432 pages
Published January 12th 2016 by Pocket Books
 (first published October 5th 2015)The Adventures of Owl #2
UF
Own


Thursday, 19 May 2016

Warlock Holmes - A study in Brimstone - CS Denning

Sherlock Holmes is an unparalleled genius who uses the gift of deduction and reason to solve the most vexing of crimes.

Warlock Holmes, however, is an idiot. A good man, perhaps; a font of arcane power, certainly. But he’s brilliantly dim. Frankly, he couldn’t deduce his way out of a paper bag. The only thing he has really got going for him are the might of a thousand demons and his stalwart flatmate. Thankfully, Dr. Watson is always there to aid him through the treacherous shoals of Victorian propriety… and save him from a gruesome death every now and again.

An imaginative, irreverent and addictive reimagining of the world’s favourite detective, Warlock Holmes retains the charm, tone and feel of the original stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle while finally giving the flat at 221b Baker Street what it’s been missing for all these years: an alchemy table.

Reimagining six stories, this riotous mash-up is a glorious new take on the ever-popular Sherlock Holmes myth, featuring the vampire Inspector Vladislav Lestrade, the ogre Inspector Torg Grogsson, and Dr. Watson, the true detective at 221b. And Sherlock. A warlock. 

My thoughts:
Truth be told...I have not read Sherlock Holmes, or watched any movies, or new adaptions. I did watch that movie where he was old. So I really can't say if the stories in this one are anything like the real ones. I mean the bones of them, since the rest is crazy. Pure crazy.

I have no idea what Warlock Holmes really was, I have ideas, but I am all whaat? He is not really human. He knows magic, he sees a lot, he is strange. But then so the real Sherlock too. He sure is a character.

In comes Watson who needs a place to stay, and then he comes to like Warlock and solving weird cases. Cos they are weird, and supernatural.

Conclusion:
The book is light, and with a touch of dry humour. It rather amusing and it is divided into 6 bigger cases that they solve together. I enjoyed it and this was a Holmes and Watson that was fun to read about. Especially when Holmes was feeding his rats that were handicapped...told you it was weird. And that is why it was good.

Paperback, 336 pages
Published May 17th 2016 by Titan Books
Paranormal mystery
for review


Wednesday, 18 May 2016

The Assistants - Camille Perri

What would you do if you thought you’d get away with it?
I folded the cheque and shoved it deep into the black hole darkness of my bag. At the time it seemed innocent enough. I would just, you know, bring the cheque home and then tear it to shreds.
For six years Tina has served drinks and collected dry-cleaning for a boss who spends more on lunch than Tina does on rent, and her debts are piling up. Then a blip in the expenses system offers her the opportunity to change her life, a big fat cheque that shouldn’t have her name on it. She’s a good person but the temptation is too much and Tina’s moral compass temporarily malfunctions.
But with wealth comes trouble. It doesn’t take long for one of Tina’s fellow assistants to notice – and she wants in. Tina may have an unlimited expense account but is she about to discover the limit to her luck? 

My thoughts:
Oh Tina Tina, you sure got yourself into one big mess.

This book is, what to say, revenge chick-lit, but not really chic-lit, women's fic? Oh whatever, it is fiction ;)

Tina is an assistant. We are told her boss is crazy, eh, you know Tina, it's your job to assist. Sure he spends a lot of money, but he is rich, he can. Anyway, she steals and pays of her debt. Which, I get the remorse, that is bad! But at the same time that is pocket change. No one would ever notice, and she gets a crap salary anyway, and she does everything for him!

But of course the book does not end there, someone else wants in and then and the and then...our of control!

Still, she does make a new friend, and she meets a guy that she gradually gets to know better.

All while they steal money.

And then the world falls down, the book starts with the end, so that is not a spoiler.

Conclusion:
It was really light and I just breezed right through it.

Cover
ok

Kindle Edition, 320 pages
Published April 21st 2016 by Transworld Digital
Fiction
NG


Tuesday, 17 May 2016

Too Hot to handle - Tessa Bailey

The road trip was definitely a bad idea. Having already flambéed her culinary career beyond recognition, Rita Clarkson is now stranded in God-Knows-Where, New Mexico, with a busted-ass car and her three temperamental siblings, who she hasn't seen in years. When rescue shows up---six-feet-plus of hot, charming sex on a motorcycle---Rita's pretty certain she's gone from the frying pan right into the fire . . .

Jasper Ellis has a bad boy reputation in this town, and he loathes it. The moment he sees Rita, though, Jasper knows he's about to be sorely tempted. There's something real between them. Something raw. And Jasper has only a few days to show Rita that he isn't just for tonight---he's forever. 

My thoughts:
Too much smexy times....
Whaaat?
*hears the sound of a stampede*
LOL.

SO yes if you want lots of passion then here it is, as for me, come on peeps, you know I skim that cos I am all seen it once, seen it all...except sometimes. Then I read.

Rita and her 3 siblings go on a roadtrip to honor their mum. And then the car breaks down and they wont leave it...

She had some serious issues about cooking since her mum wanted to her become like her.

And then there is Jasper, you know what, I liked how the tables were turned. In most books men can just sleep around how much they want, but Jasper actually had a bad rep, a slutty rep, like women get. Fair should be fair. So he has that chip on his shoulder.

Time is short.
And then they lived happily ever after. After a few drama moments and hick ups.

Conclusion:
Nice. 

Cover
Well it does look hot

Kindle, 200ish
Expected publication: May 17th 2016 by Forever
Romancing the Clarksons #1
Contemporary romance
NG


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