Monday, November 17, 2014

A Word from Ash Krafton.

So my wonderful followers, I'm technically am still on vacation... Yes, the wedding was great (and thank God, it's over).  Yes, I'm prepping all sorts of Thanksgiving and Christmas gifts and goodies... And Yes, I'm looking forward to coming back in full swing at the first of the year!   But this is SO important for Ash Krafton and her amazing Demimonde series.  So instead of tell you about it myself, I'm going to let Ms. Krafton do so.  
Dear Beautiful Book Buddy,

The Demimonde series is getting a baby sister 😊

TALES OF THE DEMIMONDE was released yesterday on Kindle… It's a collection of short works based on BLEEDING HEARTS, BLOOD RUSH, AND WOLF'S BANE.

And I'm writing to you for your help. Best part, it's totally easy!

I recently started my first Thunderclap campaign. Thunderclap is a program that allows people to join forces and send out a single unified message on a pre-determined date. It's a big voice that helps to get a message noticed.
In order for the message to go out, a campaign must enlist the aid of at least 100 supporters... or else it doesn't go through.
We are at about a third of the minimum support needed, so if you haven't joined, I ask you to consider helping.
On November 30, my new ebook will be going Kindle free. I'd love you to join this campaign to spread the word... you'll be offering a free urban fantasy book to your readers when you do.
Stop by to donate a Tweet, a FB status, and even a Tumbler post (each one will count as a separate supporter to my 100 count goal!) It'll help make a big noise and I'd truly appreciate it!

(And if anyone would like a copy before the free date, just send me the email you want me to use and I'll gift you a copy.)

Thanks, sweeties… luv you all.

Cheers, Ash

Monday, September 29, 2014

A Vacation: Family Weddings Can Be Interesting

To all the readers of Place of Reads, we will be on a vacation for the month of October 1st through January 1st.  My sister is getting married, my mom is finally moving out of my house, and I am having a job change all in the month of October.  Then there are the holidays.  

We will be returning in in the first full week of January!  We look forward to talking about books through the year, come January!  Until that time, keep reading, keep finding new books, and have fun doing it.  

Happy Reading!


Monday, September 15, 2014

Die for Me by Amy Plum


In the City of Lights, two star-crossed lovers battle a fate that is destined to tear them apart again and again for eternity.

When Kate Mercier's parents die in a tragic car accident, she leaves her life--and memories--behind to live with her grandparents in Paris. For Kate, the only way to survive her pain is escaping into the world of books and Parisian art. Until she meets Vincent.

Mysterious, charming, and devastatingly handsome, Vincent threatens to melt the ice around Kate's guarded heart with just his smile. As she begins to fall in love with Vincent, Kate discovers that he's a revenant--an undead being whose fate forces him to sacrifice himself over and over again to save the lives of others. Vincent and those like him are bound in a centuries-old war against a group of evil revenants who exist only to murder and betray. Kate soon realizes that if she follows her heart, she may never be safe again.


Die for Me by Amy Plum
5 out 5

Now, let's take a moment before I review this book to talk about the cover.  I mean, LOOK AT IT!  It is gorgeous.  Like a frameable piece of art.  And I love that!  And it actually appears to be relevant to the actual story!  Way to go Publishing company!  

So, the prologue had me scared!  I hate angel books!  Especially YA angel books... They are so bleh for me.  So when I read the book, and discovered that they are revenants (which just means one who comes back, but they aren't exactly angels or zombies... Definitely not vampires), I breathed a sigh of relief.  So glad it wasn't another angel book!

Wow!  we see grief in a lot of books all the time.  But this time I think this is one of the first books where the character's grief reminds me of my own grief when I lost someone.  And that was hard to read at first.  But it did help me understand the character better, as well, in a way, heal myself from my own grief.  And that was a nice surprise.  And kudos to the author for showing us a healthy grieving process.  Because, Kate's grieving process didn't put herself at risk or other people around her at risk.  

Oh the suspense of who/what Vincent is.  While Kate tries to figure it out, you are too.  Too many clues without any conclusive answer until Kate finds Vincent.  And when you finally find out what he is, you kinda feel like you would have never thought about that.  I found that very refreshing.  

So, the ONE thing I didn't like was how Kate kept calling the revenants monsters.  They weren't monsters to me.  And they really shouldn't have been called that.  I preferred to call them immortals if I wasn't going to call them revenants.  

Georgia seems to be a neat character.  The big sister who does all those cool things, but still makes time for her little sister.  But she makes poor decisions and gets herself into dangerous situations unknowingly.  Not the best role model and that was a bit disappointing.  

So, I did like that the revenants did have a few "gifts".  The calming touch, being able to be volant, and the ability to possess a body is kinda cool tricks.  I think it was also cool that as a volant, they would/could nave premonitions to save people.  That seemed like a great thing to save people. 

I absolutely LOVED Charlotte!  The perfect mix of girlie and tomboy.  Plus, since she is the only girl in the immediate revenant club at the house, it definitely helps us get a different perspective about being a revenant.  Plus, I think that it helps Kate; I think she really needs a girl friend, a spunky sidekick, and someone other than her sister to count on.  

So, it did make me wonder about Papy.  What does he know about the Numa and the Revenants?  And what might he be hiding?  I think I'm only curious because he did really seem to perk up at the word "numa".  

I love Jules a lot.  The artist-warrior who is a flirt was just a plain great character.  I definitely would have enjoyed more time with him.  Can't wait to see him in the next book. 

Oh, the stupidity of youth.  Kate was happy and then caused strife because of her fears.  And poor Vincent.  Through it all, he tried to respect her even though it hurt him.  Thank goodness that stupidity didn't last long at all.  

Lucien is pretty much the mortal (or is it the immortal) enemy of Vincent and the other revenants.  He isn't seen much, let alone heard of until halfway through the book.  yet even then we don't know that he is the villain of the book until almost the end of the book.  For me, that part of the story was really unnecessary.  I think that since he wasn't really necessary for the first part of the story, then he wasn't really necessary at all.  

I loved what Vincent said to Kate when they finally made up, how he didn't want to rush, how as much as he wanted to get to the "main event", he wanted to take his time getting to know Kate.  No rushing.  That made me feel warm and fuzzy!

Poor Charles!  The burden he carries as a revenant is harder for him than most.  I hate that he felt that the numa were his only option to end it.  I'm glad that he made it, though we might not see him much for a while.  

Wow!  What a battle!  Lucien, Volant Vincent and Kate battling for survival .  The whole thing kept me on the edge of my seat.  I didn't know how it would end, but I couldn't wait to see victor.  

The birthday celebration for Kate's 17th birthday was amazing, beautiful, and completely unbelievable.  But I think that is what happens when you date a man from WWII.  Still, the whole thing was beautiful, and I love it.  

Overall, this was a beautiful novel.  I highly recommend it.

Happy Reading!


Thursday, September 11, 2014

Throw Back Thursday and an Upcoming Book!

Book I of The MoonBound Clan Vampire series

Bound by Night was a fantastic start to this very promising new series…
a very tasty treat from a must be read author.  Happy reading everybody…you’re bound to love it.
Night Owl Reviews for Bound by Night

“The exceptionally entertaining Ione kicks off a sexy new vampire series…
Ione does what she does best: deliver paranormal romance with a sexy and dangerous bite!
RT Book Reviews ****HOT Review for Bound by Night

Book II of The MoonBound Clan Vampires series

“Ione’s second MoonBound Vampires paranormal deftly uses a mixture of complex rivalries, primal violence, and sex to portray a society in which frequent vampire enslavement provokes a civil-rights dispute…Ione’s characters are relatable and sympathetic both because of and despite their id-drenched setting, and Ione’s flavor of vampirism produces a fascinating mixture of authoritarianism, atavism, and compassionate humanity that works on multiple levels.”
Publishers Weekly STARRED REVIEW August 25th

“Ione has created a fascinating vampire world steeped in Native American traditions and lore and developed a path to happiness for Hunter and Aylin that is fraught with potent and poignant internal and external conflicts. The action-packed plot and creative worldbuilding keep us enthralled; the romance and sexual tension keep us emotionally invested.”
Kirkus Reviews August 28th online, Sept. 15th print

“Major talent Ione is back with the second installment in her gritty new MoonBound Clan Vampire series, where vampires live under the threat of enslavement and torture by humans.  Ione’s vampire world is made up of sometimes warring clans who fight against each other as well as humans.  Uniting the clans may be the vampires’ best hope for survival in the upcoming war with humans.  With so much at stake, these excellent character relationships are fraught with intense and conflicting emotions.  Hang on tight, as this is one exciting and dangerous world!”
—Romantic Times ****1/2 HOT

Happy Reading!


Thursday, September 4, 2014

The Darkest Craving by Gena Showalter


Having endured weeks of torture in the bowels of hell, Kane wants nothing to do with his beautiful rescuer, Josephina Aisling. The half-Fae female threatens to awaken the demon of Disaster inside him—a beast he’s determined to kill, no matter the price. 

Josephina is hunted by a brutal enemy—her royal family—and Kane is her only source of protection. He’s also the only male to ever set her aflame, and even he succumbs to the heat. But as they navigate the treacherous world of the Fae, they are forced to make a choice: live apart…or die together.

The Darkest Craving by Gena Showalter

5 out of 5

This book starts out so dark.  The trauma that Kane has experienced was horrible.  The fact that he keeps having flashbacks makes it so much worse.  PTSD is such a bitch, especially when you've finally met the person you want to be with.  

I think meeting the fae was very interesting.  Their love of the Lords of the Underworld almost rivals my friends and my love for them!  LOL!  Only Ms. Showalter would give her fans a competition with other fictional characters for their love of her main fictional characters!  But beyond that, the rules, the statuses, the blood slaves, and the royalty of the fae are a far cry from what we would call normal.  The conniving backstabbing, the blatant flirting, and the rules of conduct will keep you guessing who to trust.  

OMGoodness!  Lazarus... The pairing rod... Cameo... Speechlessness!  But I do hope that a lot of good stuff will come from and with these shockers!

Leopold is such an ass.  But I do wonder why?  And when it is revealed why the king doesn't like him and why he feels so obsessed with Josephina explains a lot of his behavior.  And it makes me feel sorry for him.  

What the heck is Disaster's problem?  Argh!  I mean, all the other demons generally deal with the other women, why can't he?  Stupid demon!

Poor Torin!  Torturing himself with an hour a day for 24 days with this unnamed girl is beyond necessary.  I don't think he is being fair to himself, and then the worst can happen, and he freaks out.  I really can't wait to see what happens with his book, because I hope all of it works out.  

Josephina (aka Tink, which is what I prefer to call her) is kinda a cool character.  She has a Cinderella story, if Cinderella were spunky and half fae.  I did love the transformation of her character, it was absolutely beautiful.  

I will say the whole Queen thing was a shock.... Plus, what happens to White & the Rainbow Rejects was a shock too.  Kind of scary really, and it definitely added a twist to the story.  

Poor Gilly.  Her determination to be like the Lords and their ladies, her love for William, and her craving to be loved back is going to get her hurt.  But whether that will benefit her or not is yet to be seen.  I do hope it all works out.  

Poor, poor Kane.  I know I keep saying that, but it's true.  His desire to kill Disaster no matter the cost to himself is heartbreaking.  I did love how he would do anything for Tink.  And how he showed her how wonderful and beautiful she is, that made me smile.  

My only problem with this book was how quick after Hell that Kane got over his PTSD issues.  That didn't feel right.  

Awesome twist in the end.  So didn't see that coming.  Loved it!  

Overall, this is such an amazing & perfect read!  I highly recommend this book and this series!
Happy Reading!


Monday, September 1, 2014

The One by Kiera Cass


THE SELECTION changed the lives of thirty-five girls forever. Now, only one will claim Prince Maxon’s heart…

For the four girls who remain at the palace, the friendships they’ve formed, rivalries they’ve struggled with and dangers they’ve faced have bound them to each other for the rest of their lives.

Now, the time has come for one winner to be chosen.

America never dreamed she would find herself anywhere close to the crown – or to Prince Maxon’s heart. But as the competition approaches its end and the threats outside the palace walls grow more vicious, America realises just how much she stands to lose – and how hard she’ll have to fight for the future she wants.

The breathtaking finale to THE SELECTION trilogy will make you swoon!


The One by Kiera Cass

5 out of 5

So, I know I'm a little late getting to this book, but I'm so glad I got to it!  

What an opening!  Between rebels & the attempted seduction, you are going to keep guessing about this book and what is going to happen next!

A lot of interesting revelations in this book.  August and Georgia were very informative and revealing about the Northern rebels.  I wondered what else they will reveal, that could potentially be used in a spin off series?  Hmmm.

Gosh, I really despised the King.  His plotting and his controlling ways are suffocating.  And I can't stand it.  I didn't like what happens to him in the end, but I think it was needed to ensure what happens.  

I hadn't liked Celeste through out the series, but I will say that now that I understand why she did what she did mad her more likable.  Plus, she became so much cooler after that, especially with America.  

The Convicting is a horrible tradition.  A way to silence dissenters and give the appearance of justice.  I really loved the risk and sacrifice that America gave to give mercy instead of cold and unjust justice.  

It broke my heart about America's dad.  He was such a wonderful man.  And even with the loss, America showed her strength.  The way she put Kota in his place was fantastic.  And the letter her dad wrote to her was fantastic.  It really revealed a lot.  

OMGoodness!  Shalom is... was... a rebel... A Northern rebel.  I can't imagine what he has shared, what he has done, and what secrets he has kept.  

Oh dear... There was that moment when Kota called America out about Asen that I wasn't sure what to expect.  But when Maxon actually found out, and how he found out, that broke my heart.  

The amount of changes in the last few chapters will keep your your head spinning.  You really don't know what will happen until the very end, and I loved that!

I knew it!  You can verify it in my review of The Guard, I knew that Aspen should go after Lucy!  And Lucy truly deserved Aspen, her own knight in shining armour.  

I think the best line in the whole series was this: "This isn't happily ever after.  It's so much more than that."  I think it is perfect.

I feel so bad for all the losses after the Southern rebel invasion.  And the waiting period to find out who was lost was agonizing.  

Overall, this was an amazing, awesome, perfect book.  I loved how it ended the trilogy, but I'm so sorry to see it end.  If you haven't read this series, you really need to!

Happy Reading!


Thursday, August 28, 2014

The Selection Stories: The Prince & The Guard by Kiera Cass


Two novellas set in the world of Kiera Cass's #1 New York Timesbestselling Selection series are now available in print for the first time.The Prince and The Guard both offer captivating views into the hearts and minds of the two men fighting to win America Singer's love. This collection also features exclusive bonus content, including a sneak peek at The One, the eagerly anticipated third novel in the Selection series.

Before America arrived at the palace to compete in the Selection, there was another girl in Prince Maxon's life. The Prince opens the week before the Selection begins and follows Maxon through the first day of the competition.

Raised as a Six, Aspen Leger never dreamed that he would find himself living in the palace as a member of the royal guard. In The Guard, readers get an inside look at Aspen's life within the palace walls—and the truth about a guard's world that America will never know.


The Selection Stories: The Prince & The Guard by Kiera Cass
4 out of 5

If you would like to see the reviews of the 2 short stories in this book, please look at the previous book review posts.  For this review, I'm reviewing everything else in this book, which is also author's notes, playlists, and tons of other extras.  

I loved to finally get to see the family trees and to get the author's notes with them.  Getting an explanation on top of knowing why things happened as they did helped to add depth and get a better understanding of a lot of characters.  The fact that a lot of last names were changed during the installation of the caste system is so horrible.  

I loved reading the list of the caste system.  I have been trying to keep it all straight in my head, but it definitely helped to now have a list.  

I loved reading the Q & A with Kiera Cass.  She seems like such a friendly person.  I couldn't help but like her even more after reading the Q & A.

The only reason that this compilation doesn't get a 5 star rating is because there is No Map!  I need a map, please!  Since a lot of areas got renamed after Illea was created, it would be nice to know exactly what areas we are talking about.  

Overall, this is a great compilation of stuff.  For all fans of the Selection series, I hihgly recommend this book.  And for those who haven't gotten sucked into this beautiful world, y'all better get on it!

Happy Reading!


Monday, August 25, 2014

The Guard by Kiera Cass


Before America Singer met Prince Maxon . . . 
Before she entered the Selection . . . 
She was in love with a boy named Aspen Leger.


The Guard by Kiera Cass
4 out of 5

I have never really liked Aspen.  So, I delayed as much as I could reading this novella.  Now I will say that by the end, I didn't dislike Aspen as much as I did before, but I still don't like him.  

I liked that Aspen isn't such an ass, like I had originally though.  He wants to protect those he loves, which in his mind means pushing them away a lot.  I don't like it, but it makes him more understandable.

Oooh... More secrets.  Between the King's Office and the Mail room, many secrets are being shared and destroyed.  I wonder what else we'll learn in The One.

Oh how I wish that Aspen would go after Lucy.  I think they would make such a cute couple, especially since he seems to make her calm, to ease her nerves.  

I think my biggest problem with this story is how blind Aspen is, how whiny he is, and how judgmental he is about Maxon, especially when he is doing a lot of similar things. 

Overall, this was a good story.  I definitely recommend this novella.  
Happy Reading!


Sunday, August 24, 2014

Happy Birthday to me!

I'm 30 years old today!   

And here's to another year of books, love and fun!

Happy Reading!


Saturday, August 23, 2014

Happy Doctor Who Premiere Day!

Yay!  It's Doctor Who Premiere day!  Yay!

If you are as much of a Doctor Who fan as I am, you have been waiting for this since Christmas!  9 months is a long time to wait.  

So, I hope all of you have a good Saturday, and if you haven't watched Doctor Who, you really need to give it a shot!

Happy Reading!


Thursday, August 21, 2014

The Prince by Kiera Cass


Before thirty-five girls were chosen to compete in the Selection...

Before Aspen broke America's heart...

There was another girl in Prince Maxon's life...


The Prince by Kiera Cass
4 out of 5

So, I'm not normally a huge fan of short stories & novellas, primarily because they leave me wanting more.  Yet, I will admit I have been dying to read this short story just so I can get a better grasp on Maxon.  And let me tell you that this was so worth it!

Daphne, the Princess of France, might only be a blip in this story, but she definitely makes an impression.  I think that she definitely knew how to play on Maxon's insecurities and since he had hurt her, she was definitely aiming for the heart to hurt him.  

I had already felt bad for Maxon before this book, but this feeling just increased.  His father has made him feel so insecure about a lot of things.  He hasn't gotten a lot of interaction with people his own age, and to suddenly (though knowingly) be thrust into a situation where he is surrounded by 35 girls all vying for him, it can be more than overwhelming.  It can be absolutely dangerous.  

I loved getting to see Queen Amberly through her son.  She is always so encouraging, no matter what the results are.  I love that.  

I did love the bonus "Exclusive Extended Ending".  Some secrets were hinted at, and how/why Maxon decided to keep America in the Selection.  I think this was a perfect extension to this little novella.

I wish there had been a bit more of this story.  Maybe a bit more before his birthday, to see what was normal before the Selection.

Overall, this is a wonderfully quick read.  I think it is a great prequel to the Selection series, a great refresher before reading The One, and just a plain good read.  I definitely recommend this novella!

Happy Reading!


Monday, August 18, 2014

The Darkest Seduction by Gena Showalter


Possessed by the demon of Promiscuity, immortal warrior Paris is irresistibly seductive, but his potent allure comes at a terrible price. Every night he must bed someone new, or weaken and die. And the woman he craves above all others is the one woman he thought was forever beyond his reach until now. 

Newly possessed by the demon of Wrath, Sienna Blackstone is racked by a ruthless need to punish those around her. Yet in Paris's arms, the vulnerable beauty finds soul-searing passion and incredible peace. Until a blood feud between ancient enemies heats up.

Will the battle against gods, angels and creatures of the night bind them eternally or tear them apart?


The Darkest Seduction by Gena Showalter
5 out of 5

Yay!  The book we had all been waiting for!  Yes, I know I'm 2 years late, but I've been waiting since Paris lost Sienna.  And let me tell you, I wasn't as disappointed as I was expecting.

On a side note to the publishing company about book covers:  Please, for the love of Pete, please, please, please actually try to get the art department descriptions of what the characters look like.  Don't put a violet-eyed, exotic looking woman on the cover when in the book she is a hazel-eyed, average looking woman.  Come on!  Get with it!

OMGoodness!  More is revealed about Galen... And I also don't know how I feel about him going after Legion or how he gets her.  But I do find it interesting what potentially might happen.  

I loved when William threatened Zacharel about feeding him his liver, and his response is that it is too salty... Hilarious!  I think it didn't work as planned by William, but it definitely made for an entertaining bit of conversation in this book.

Oh, the babies!  Wow!  I personally wasn't expecting them to be so potentially evil and undeniably cute... And their names are definitely unique.  Not names I would have picked, but definitely unique.  

Viola & her (male) vampiric Tasmanian devil, Princess Fluffykins was hilarious! I could not resist laughing at her.  Even though she is a self-absorbed (thanks to her demon), she brought a light-heartedness to the story that we definitely needed.  And even with that, I wonder, will she get her own story where we find out what she has forced herself to forget?

Gosh, I! Hate! Cronus! &! Rhea! Their bloody bickering hurt so many people unnecessarily.   But, I must say that I was pleased with what happened to them.  I mean, it was definitely a surprise with what happened to them... I never saw it coming. 

I'm so curious about the Unspoken Ones... What are they going to do?  Who are they going after?  And will they ever be restrained again?

So what a big turn of events for Sienna.  I do wonder how this will effect the coming war.

So, I really want to now read the angel spin-off series!   I'm kind of excited to see what will happen to Zacharel.   

Overall, this was a good book, a great end to the overlying story arc of Sienna & Paris, and to finally get some resolutions.  For all the Lord of the Underworlds fans, this is a must read!  I highly recommend it!

Happy Reading!


Thursday, August 14, 2014

The Accidental Demon Slayer by Angie Fox


It's never a good day when an ancient demon shows up on your toilet bowl. For Lizzie Brown, that's just the beginning. Soon her hyperactive terrier starts talking, and her long-lost biker witch Grandma is hurling Smuckers jars filled with magic. Just when she thinks she's seen it all, Lizzie learns she's a demon slayer-and all hell is after her.
Of course, that's not the only thing after her. Dimitri Kallinikos, a devastatingly handsome shape-shifting griffin needs Lizzie to slay a demon of his own. But how do you talk a girl you've never met into going straight to the underworld? Lie. And if that doesn't work, how dangerous could a little seduction be...?


The Accidental Demon Slayer by Angie Fox
3.5 out of 5

I love how Lizzie Brown cusses.  It is quite a bit like listening to an angry child.  And when she finally does use a real, adult cuss word, I was kind of shocked.  It also made me giggle.

I think that Pirate is my favorite character of all time!  He is hyper-actively funny, absolutely adorable, extremely hungry, and surprisingly mouthy.  He definitely made me laugh the most, and he was really the most consistent character out of the whole book. 

The Panos was a very interesting piece of magic.  Just the way a single stone on a bracelet can become whatever you need it to be to protect yourself, I think it sounds really useful... Or, as Lizzie proved, it could be a giant pain in the ass.

I really think that all these problems occurred in this book because NO ONE was upfront with information or explaination... Granted, it did lead to a lot of hilarious moments.  I just wished that someone had sat everyone down and explained things earlier than they did, because even I, the reader, got pretty confused on the whys, whats, and hows of this story.

I did find that the switch stars really did sound like Frisbees of death... Though, when it really needed to work, I think it fell quite a bit short of its target.   

I really found Andrea to be an irritating bitch (tee-hee, just like Lizzie said!).  But otherwise, she really wasn't necessary to the story, except to irritate me.

Okay, so my biggest issue with this book is how Lizzie suddenly trusts Gertie so quickly, and as if she has had decades of emotional connection with her.  I mean, the dumpster speech is a great example of the bull that happened unbelievably.  Argh!  It doesn't make any sense!

So, Dimitri... What do I get to say about him... Hmmmm.  OMGoodness!  There is a Yummy Griffin Shifter Alert!  I can't help but love his alpha, I'm-going-to-protect-you-and-have-you-as-well attitude that he exudes.  Then again, he was a bit of an ass at times.  Like when he was refusing to explain things.  And it also didn't help that he was a liar on top of that... But I still loved him.

Vald, the mad scientist demon, was not what I was expecting.  Which is always a good thing when reading about a villain.  I like being surprised by the villain occasionally, and I definitely was with this.  

So between Gertie, Phoenix, and Lizzie's adoptive parents, I find it amazing that she turned out as well-adjusted as she did.  I mean, they are all crazy on different levels, and had the potential of making a psychopath.

Okay, the roadkill magic was just really gross!  And coming from this farm girl, that is saying something.

Overall, this is a cute book, though it could have been better.  I will try the next book to see if it does get better.  I recommend this book for a mindless read.  
Happy Reading!


Monday, August 11, 2014

The Darkest Prison by Gena Showalter


Once, Atlas, the Titan god of strength, was the Greek goddess Nike's slave. Now, he is her master. And soon these sworn enemies destined to destroy one another will be forced to risk everything for a chance at love….

The Darkest Prison by Gena Showalter

5 out of 5

So, this was such a good short story.  To see another god that wasn't Cronus or Rhea was perfect.

So, Nike is more of a warrior than a princess or lady.  But she has always longed to be treated as such (what girl doesn't).  After being a guard, being a prisoner isn't one thing she like.  She really longs for freedom and revenge.  Still, I loved how strong she is as a character.  

Atlas was originally out for revenge, but quickly it changes to nothing but pure desire for Nike.  And boy is that determination hot!  I kinda wish that Nike hadn't held out for so long!

I did love how the god of strength knew how to romance a woman.  Not something you normally see from a "manly" man like Atlas.  

Best part was both Atlas' and Nike's decisions.  Atlas' sacrifice in doing what he had to do because he loved Nike was really awesome.  But I think the biggest decision came when Nike saw what Atlas had done to his house.  I think that was the best part of all of it.  

Again, this is another short story about the world of the Lords.  Yet in this one, there isn't really much of a hint at the Lords or the demons (with a small exception in the prologue).  I did miss getting to see the demons/Lords.  They are so much fun...

I did love how this story ended.  It was such a happy ending.  

Overall, this is a good and quick read.  I recommend it for everything one needing their Lord of the Underworld fix.  

Happy Reading!


Thursday, August 7, 2014

The Darkest Fire by Gena Showalter


He is the guardian of hell, more monster than man. She is the goddess of oppression, more angel than woman. Together they will enter the flames to battle a dangerous horde of demon lords -- and discover a passion unlike any other....

Don't miss this sizzling prequel to Gena Showalter's breathtaking new paranormal series, The Lords of the Underworld! Though they carry an eternal curse, the Lords of the Underworld are irresistibly seductive -- and unimaginably powerful.

The Darkest Fire by Gena Showalter

5 out of 5

OMGoodness!  Eekkk!  It is Beauty & the Beast in the Underworld!  Yay!  I mean, I love that fairytale, so of course I knew that I was going to love this story!

Geryon is more than he appears.  Though he looks like a monster, he creaves the life he gave up... Until Kadence comes into the picture.  Then he sees himself becoming a Guardian of the damned as a belssing, a gift.  And when he decides to save Kadence, it was a beautiful thing.  But it was also one of the saddest things.  

Kadence, though the Goddess of Oppression, is a very meek character.  Not what I would have expected.  It was almost as if she was oppressing herslef.  But when she finally does what she needs to do, to protect Geryon, she seems to finally find herself.  I did like that.  

This was one of the happiest and saddest happy-endings I've ever read.  Beautiful in all its happy/sad glory.  And I think that is what makes it so hard, that you already know what is going to happen before you even start this story.  

Overall, this is a wonderful short story that lets you see the beginning of the Lords of the Underworld.  Good story, and I highly recommend it!
Happy Reading!


Monday, August 4, 2014

Death's Academy by Michael Bast


The Death’s Academy entrance exam for Midnight Smith is quickly approaching. There’s just one problem: Midnight is the worst exam taker the academy has ever seen. If Midnight wants to ever step foot inside the school, he’ll have to join forces with the hated Guardian Angels, and together face the deadliest creatures in the world—the dreaded Unicorns. Becoming a Grim Reaper has never been more hilarious!


Death's Academy by Michael Bast
3 out of 5

So, I normally don't read middle school literature, probably because I didn't read middle school literature when I was in middle school.  But, it was a cute book.  

What I liked:

I loved the pictures scattered through the book.  I wish there had been more of them.  
Some of the classes at Death's Academy sound cool, but others sound a bit disturbing.  

Mal was a great character.  I wish I had had a best friend like Mal when I was that age.  She is creative, and intelligent, which I like.  

What I didn't like:

I didn't like Midnight.  He was disrespectful, he was a rule breaker, and was really a irritating character. Not a great example of what you would want your own middle schoolers to emulate.  


I though that this was a very interesting world, what with the hoodies, halos, shorties, and such.  But for me, this story was not exactly what I would prefer to read.  Another plus is that this book is really clean, though it does hint at curse words and there is potty humor (not my favorite, but I do remember middle school boys being really big into that).  Overall, this was a cute read, and if you have a middle schooler, this book might be a great one for them.  
Happy Reading!


Friday, August 1, 2014

The Book of Life by Deborah Harkness


After traveling through time in Shadow of Night, the second book in Deborah Harkness’s enchanting series, historian and witch Diana Bishop and vampire scientist Matthew Clairmont return to the present to face new crises and old enemies. At Matthew’s ancestral home at Sept-Tours, they reunite with the cast of characters from A Discovery of Witches—with one significant exception. But the real threat to their future has yet to be revealed, and when it is, the search for Ashmole 782 and its missing pages takes on even more urgency. In the trilogy’s final volume, Harkness deepens her themes of power and passion, family and caring, past deeds and their present consequences. In ancestral homes and university laboratories, using ancient knowledge and modern science, from the hills of the Auvergne to the palaces of Venice and beyond, the couple at last learn what the witches discovered so many centuries ago.


The Book of Life by Deborah Harkness

5+ out of 5

So, I was extra excited to read this book.  I mean, I had been waiting 2 years for this book, and I couldn't wait to start this book!  I loved it!  And what a great conclusion!

So the beginning was really big.  Learning so much about what happened to Emily, the knights of Lazarus, ghosts, and everything else that Diana & Matthew missed while timewalking.  It is almost an overload of information.  But in some ways I think that was the best, because you know that it was an overload for Diana and Matthew.  

Gosh, I disliked Baldwin!  The ass is a bigger ass than I first thought.  Ugh!  But then he suddenly was an awesome character.  I'm not sure what happened, but I will say that Baldwin became one big surprise by the end of this book... And I can honestly say by the end, I did like him.  

So many secrets in a vampire's life... It really is the bread and butter of the vampires.  It is so sad to learn some of those secrets:  Ysabeau's actual creation & the beginning of her vampiric life; the truth about blood rage; & Matthew's son Benjamin.  You can't help but wonder that if the life is eternal (for lack of a better term), why keep all those secrets and burdens to yourself?  

Now, for me, I have been wondering about Annie and Jack since the end of 2nd book.  And we finally get an answer.  Poor Annie will not be seen again, which does make me a bit sad.  But then there is Jack!  And I couldn't help but cheer.. But then, it became poor Jack... And then Damn it!  I hate Baldwin!  Argh!  

There was so much researching in this book, much more than in the previous books.  Between the library, the lab, all the auction houses, and the Book of Life itself, we learned a lot more about the supernatural than we have before.  I liked that.

Wow!  About 1/2 way through the book, we get the big reveal about Benjamin & who his children are.  It had me surprised and shocked, because I definitely was not expecting that.  And what made it worse was how much I more I hated Benjamin after that reveal.  

So, I never really liked Miriam before this book, but boy did she grow on me.  She is one sassy vampire with a dry sense of humor that I loved!

OMGoodness!  I love Gallowglass.  I mean, between him and Ysabeau, he is one of my favorite characters from this trilogy.  I love him and wouldn't mind having him as my personal bodyguard.  And then there was his big reveal about his feelings, about Diana... Wooow!  I do so hope that he finds someone that will love him too (wouldn't be nice if he got his own book.... Hmmmm, nice!)

Now on to my other favorite character from this trilogy: Ysabeau.  I absolutely love her.  She is so strong, is a kick-ass warrior, and a loving mother & grandmother.  It all was great, but even better was seeing how she evolved from a witch-hating vampire to the supportive rock that Diana needed to succeed in her mission to save her husband and children. 

I was excited and scared when Diana told Matthew to start his own Scion, primarily because she knew if she didn't, he would possibly be forced to kill his own children.  But who knew what would have happened, and what struggles would happen because of them being separated.  But I was so glad it happened.  

I liked meeting Fernando.  He strikes me as a sassy gay man... Which did get me thinking:  Were there sassy gay men in medieval Europe?  But beyond this question, I think that Fernando is the perfect balance for almost every character.  He is the best friend for Sarah.  He is the common sense for Matthew.  He is the protector & educator for Diana.  He is the older brother for Marcus. He seems to be exactly what everyone needs when they need it.  

I loved Philippe's big reveal... And I think that Diana was not surprised.  The fact that he knew that she would be the one to carry his burdens, that put a lot of his scheming into perspective.  

When we finally understand what (and who) the Book of Life is, what it means to witches, vampires, & daemons, and what it means to humans too, was just so cool.  And when we see how it is linked between Diana, the weavers, the bloodrage-afflicted vampires, and the children born of those unions, it is beyond amazing.  

This was one ultimate ending to such an amazing trilogy, and yet, I'm dying for more.  I want more stories of the Bishop-Clairmont clan, and of their friends & family.  Overall, this is an amazing book, and it was the best one yet.  I can't wait to read more by Ms. Harkness (hopefully one day soon!).  I highly recommend this book & this trilogy!

Happy Reading!


Monday, July 28, 2014

The Darkest Surrender by Gena Showalter


Possessed by the demon of Defeat, Strider cannot lose a challenge without suffering unimaginable pain. For him, nothing stands in the way of victory. Until Kaia, an enchanting Harpy, tempts him to the razor's edge of surrender.Known among her people as The Disappointment, Kaia must bring home the gold in the Harpy Games or die. Strider is a distraction she can't afford because he has an agenda of his own-steal first prize, an ancient godly artifact, before the winner can be named. But as the competition heats up, only one prize will matter-the love neither had thought possible.

The Darkest Surrender by Gena Showalter

4 out 5

So this was a cute book, a way to pass the time, but it wasn't exactly my favorite one out of this series.  

The Characters:

Kaia the Disappointment... Wow, what a horrible title.  I mean, I though her sister Gwen had a bad title, but nothing is worse than being known as the Disappointment of the family.  I think the reason she received it is really a harsh punishment.  The fact that her mother gave it to her because of a mistake I think made it worse.  

Kane seems to be a great guy, but he seems to just be really lonely, and he needs a safe hug... No electric static shocks, no colasping ceilings or crumbling floors.  Just a nice hug.  

The Moirai are so crazy & disturbing, but I can't help but laugh at the whole situation.  And the way they talk in circles towards Kane is hilarious!  But their question of Kane... OMGoodness!  If anyone would be the one to be asked that question, I would have expected it to be William.  

Sienna kinda irritated me in this book.  I mean, I think it is great that she is trying to be strong against her demon & then plans to give her life up to be free of it, but I feel like she is just hitting her head against a wall for all the results that she is achieving.  

Paris finally seems to be getting out of his drunken stupor and is finally doing something!  Though, I'm not sure if he is going about it the right way. Which makes me wonder, am I going to like Paris by the time we have his story?  

Juliette is an uber bitch!  And I really feel that she deserved more than she actually got.  But, maybe the loss of her consort will be painful enough to serve as a punishment.  

Tabitha the Vicious truly lives up to her name.  Plus being full of secrets, she definitely adds to the intrigue of the story.  

Neeka is a pretty cool harpy.  Even though she is deaf, she doesn't let that hold her back.  Though I wonder what she's got that the phoenixes would want... Hopefully this will be answered soon.

The fact that Lazarus is a bad guy turned good guy being forced to do the wrong thing definitely makes a twist to the story.  And with his past, it is easier to believe that he really is the bad guy... So when he finally makes the sacrifice that he did, he really became my favorite character of this book. 

My Favorite parts:

The Harpie Games.  It sounds like a life-or-death Olympics.  Which kind of sounds pretty exciting, dangerous, and just plain entertaining.  I wish we had gotten to see more of it in the book.

Can I just say that when William puts together the fact that he is/was crushing on one of his great-nieces, it was hilarious.... I kinda giggled for a good few minutes about it.  

Other Stuff:

Wow... a marriage.... and it kinda is a big surprise, especially since one of them was unconscious.  I did find it interesting the end result of the marriage... Telepathic communication between the spouses.  Not sure if I'd want that.  

For me, this story dragged on a bit.  I felt that certain parts dragged on because it felt forced.  Then there were the parts that seem to skip over key points that would make the story better.  There was little to keep my attention during the down times, and while the action scenes were good, there was almost too much in the action scenes.  

Overall, this is a good book, but it is not my favorite.  I do recommend this series, and this book.  
Happy Reading!