Why I’ve Been M.I.A.

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Hello everyone!

I missed doing this sooooo much! Today I have a rather chill post for y’all.

Let’s chat.

                If you have been reading my blog prior to my major hiatus, then you would know that my posting schedule became rather erratic before completely stopping. Previously, I have tried to schedule my posts every Tuesday and Saturday, and for quite some time, it really worked for me. I’m not gonna lie, I started this blog before I had a regular, everyday kind of job. In a way, reading and blogging about it became an escape route from my boredom and sadness (this is a whole different issue *wink*). Of course, it was also a way for me to reach out to others who, like me, are obsessed with books and talking about them. Months after my posts became regular, I received a call from a friend saying that I am being hired to become an instructor at a nursing school. Of course I became ecstatic. It was something I have been waiting for. It was something I really wanted to do and I know I would enjoy doing.

                For a while I thought that I could handle reading, blogging, and teaching like a boss. Well, I realized I cannot do it rather quickly haha! At first, I thought that I wasn’t writing or reading for that matter because I was busy with work and other stuff. BUT, thinking about it now, I had time. I knew I had time in my hands, and I could have managed my time more efficiently so I could squeeze everything I wanted to do in my 24 hours. I didn’t. That was when I realized I hit a major slump. I didn’t really want to read anything or write about anything for a long time, hence the hiatus from the blog. I felt like my reviews weren’t relevant enough, and there was a time it felt pointless doing it. I’ve always said that me reviewing books I have read was never about gaining a gazillion views or a hoard of followers. And it never really is. However, let’s be honest for a second and admit that seeing the views counter go up really does make us smile and giddy. It is some form of validation. Something every human being will want at some point in their life.

                And it’s not like no one ever reads my posts. No. I had readers and followers as well. Comments were few, but consistent. Do I seem too ungrateful? I was thankful, but not content. I always am I guess. At that point, I had no interest in reading, and I had the hardest time, finishing this one book that was ah-mazing. If I wasn’t in that stupid slump, I would have devoured that. Until a few weeks ago, all my books remained unloved. Shame on me, I know.  I just was disinterested and uninspired.

What changed?

                I suddenly missed reading one day. I missed being transported to different worlds. I longed to be in the shoes of different people, meeting characters, experiencing new emotions and embarking on journeys I would have never imagined. I missed the magic books had.  So I picked up my phone and chose one book in my Kindle app that intrigued me the most and started reading. The first few pages felt weird. It was like doing something for the first time. I hated the feeling honestly. I hated having lost that familiar feeling reading gave me every time. As I read on, as all of you might know, magic happened and the next thing I know I am in the forest with a dragon-boy-hybrid with blood dripping from his chest. How is that for a welcome right? This is what I missed. This is home to me.

What’s next then?

                As I am typing this, I have plans on the next few posts coming up on this wee little blog of mine. I have reviews loooong overdue that I want to do. And I have a multitude of books I want to read. I haven’t typed the first one though. Haha! Because I haven’t done it in months, I feel like a beginner and I am off to a rough re-start. I want to collect my thoughts first and wrap my head around how I want to be doing my reviews. Do I want to continue with my previous ways or should I try something new? Stuff like that. One thing is for sure though, and this is a promise I am making myself and my readers (if I have any). I will be posting a review on Tuesday, and will start with my regular posting schedule again this week.

A favour I want to ask

                This is where I need your help guys. I really want to succeed and push myself to managing my time better and overcome this dark shadow of procrastination surrounding me.  If for some reason, I wasn’t able to post twice in a week, call me out on it. I promise I don’t mind. We are all bookish friends here right?

That’s it. I really, really missed all of you and I hope we can talk about fun stuff like we used to. Also, can I just say I am sooooooo excited for Christmas? Because I am soooooo excited and I am not ashamed busting out my phone and playing Michael Buble’s Christmas album every single day.

Talk to you soon.. Love yah!

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BOOK REVIEW: Spells and Sorcery by S. Usher Evans

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You have magic.

One sentence, three words, four syllables. Enough to change my life forever. And I’m not talking about the whole spells and sorcery thing.

Lexie Carrigan thought the weirdest thing about her was she preferred watching documentaries and reading the newspaper to reality TV and Twitter. But on the eve of her fifteenth birthday, her aunt and sisters drop a bomb–she’s magical.

Now the girl who never made waves is blowing up her nightstand and trying to keep from wreaking havoc on her school. When a kind stranger shows up with all the answers, Lexie hopes he’ll be able to help her control her newfound powers. But Gavon may not be as kind as he seems, and soon Lexie finds out that being magical is the least weird thing about her.

Spells and Sorcery is the first YA fantasy from S. Usher Evans, author of the Razia series, the Madion War Trilogy and Empath.

Seriously, I have no idea where time goes because it feels like yesterday when I received an ARC of The Island and here I am, reviewing another series from S. Usher Evans. Whew! I received an email from the lovely author/ her own publisher as well, about a new series she has written and if I might be interested in reading it. Of course, seeing how The Island and The Chasm and Double Life (hey Razia girl!) worked out super well for me, I was in.

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The magic system, though not astoundingly unique, is well thought of. Now we all know about witches and the variety of things they can do. However, the world that the author created made for a unique system where the witches are categorized according to their talents, essentially complementing each other. The societal and institutional aspects of the magic system is well developed and I like that about it.

The suspense and mystery regarding the plot twist (twists? gotta read it if you wanna know *wink*) was were not dragged on for too long yet not given too soon. Now if you have read some of my previous reviews you might know that I hate, HATE, frustrating books that keep too much for too long that by the end you just don’t care anymore.

Ms. Evans, as usual, is able to give natural reactions to her characters. I mean, you could just relate to them, because they seem natural. They could just be the usual person you walk past along the streets. They are flawed, they try, they cope up and they learn. The development of the characters was very discreet, but relevant.

Now, I want you to pay attention to what I am going to say. EVERYBODY loves a bad ass grandma. Do you? I do. Come on, when you are inches away from dying and you find out you kept your precious life because your granny “claimed you”, you gotta bow to the queen bee that is your Nana. And just like that, I described my favorite scene in the book.

I am usually good at having hunches regarding twists and stuff but honestly, I think I was too busy about the other stuff going on that I only realized it about 3 pages before the big reveal. Still caught it though *wink* Well played Whitney, well played.

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Something about it just doesn’t settle with me completely. And I know this is stupid, but it didn’t just hit it with me like The Chasm or Double Life did. I know I shouldn’t compare them because they are TOTALLY different books, but I hope you get what I am saying.I think maybe it is because this book is for a younger crowd?  Maybe.

The synopsis fell flat for me. The first 2 lines that is.

The pacing was slow at first. And I understand why it had to be that way, explaining a lot of stuff and showing how Lexie will react to her newfound powers but personally, I would have wanted it to have picked up speed early on. It did pick up, about 1/3 into the book and all was well 🙂 Well not all well because she almost died but you get what I mean.

Despite these, I am really curious what comes next, and will definitely read the next book in this series. I also want to read it to see if it will be a better fit for me. I like that this book is not like anything I have read before, with witches having concrete limits to their powers. And I think people will enjoy it too.

3.5star

**I received an ARC of this book from the publisher for free in exchange of an honest review. All opinions are my own and have not been influenced by anyone or anything.

**Spells and Sorcery (Lexie Carrigan Chronicles #1) releases on October 4, 2016.

BOOK REVIEW: Tainted by Alexandra Moody

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The ARC: the world’s last chance for survival, but this underground fallout shelter is the last place you want to be.

At the tender age of two Elle Winters lost everything, when the day of impact transformed Earth’s surface into an icy, desolate wasteland. Fifteen years later, all she has ever known are the cold, artificial confines of underground fallout shelter, the ARC. Under the Council’s rule, ruthless officials roam the hallways and community comes first. Everyone lives in fear of failing their annual testing and those that do are deemed tainted—taken away without any warning or a word of goodbye.

No one has been taken in over six months and the remaining citizens of the ARC have slowly begun to forget the danger. Elle remains wary, but even she is beginning to wonder if it’s finally safe to succumb to her feelings towards her closest friend, Sebastian.

But, no one is ever truly safe in the ARC. Elle is about to experience her own personal apocalypse and with nothing left to lose, she will finally attempt to uncover the truth about the tainted.

Will she find what she’s looking for or are some secrets better left buried deep underground?

I am feeling super productive and I didn’t want to waste my creative juices so I just typed this as a word document and will be posting this as soon as I get home. I read this book even before I read the ones in my 3 previous posts so this is a long overdue review in all honesty. I really wanted to review this book as well, because I think it had an interesting premise. Initially, I thought that it wasn’t compelling enough of a story. However, with some time in, I realized that it was an interesting story, though if I may say so, the idea of having the entire population contained into a dome/space/refuge/whatever you might want to call it because the world has been destroyed is not new in the world of science fiction. Also, I swear I read a synopsis of another book which sounds eerily similar to this, but I can’t remember the title of the book to save myself.

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Her struggles seem to be real. At some point, her emotions feels like they come from a genuine place. I guess, in technical terms, you can say that the emotions that the characters were assigned to represent were cleverly melded into the story, and you tend to feel for the characters as well.

What struck me the most were Elle’s relationships with the people around her. Although she may not notice it, or may not want it, it is evident that she has formed lasting bonds. They were relationships that felt natural to her, so avoiding forming relationships only applied to other people outside her circle. She had a special relationship with the boy’s father, which was platonic of course, but nevertheless true.

The writing was fine. It didn’t make me swoon, but it didn’t turn me off as well. It did a good job of carrying the story and that is what’s important right? Also, the character development was slow but sure. I think the author ensured first that the characters were introduced as to who they are now, and then they are introduced to a new light every so often, developing the characters as they go. The pacing, was a little slow for me. I would have wanted more action but hey, I didn’t fall asleep.

I think out of the entire book, the part where I was most excited was during the last few pages.  It was one of those I-thought-I-knew moments for the characters but then nothing was what it seems.

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The ending was not a giveaway, but I kind of guessed it 2/3 into the book. It was not an ending where I was just waiting for the book to blurt it out. BUT, I wasn’t surprised, AT ALL, about how it ended. You get what I’m saying?

I am not sure if I connected to the Elle that much. Look, I get that she has issues, and that she has lived a terrible fate but managed to survive it all but I just can’t get myself to love her as much I want to. For what it’s worth though, I like her bad ass roommate. And although I feel detached, I know that if I were somebody else reading, it would have been heartbreaking to me.

Overall, I guess what I was looking for was intensity, and richness, especially with a book playing on post-apocalyptic world and betrayal. I wanted it to keep me on my toes. Especially since this was a first book to a series/trilogy, I would have preferred that it pack a solid punch.

2.5star

I don’t think this is a horrible book. It just isn’t for me. I think people who are really into this genre will find this a delight to read. Unfortunately, I will not be reading further into this trilogy.

Have you read this book?

What did you think about it?

 

BOOK REVIEW: The Chasm by S. Usher Evans

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This is happening. This is really happening. It seems like a short time since I reviewed The Island in my blog and here I am, reviewing it’s sequel for you people of the bookland! Listen, when I read The Island, I have told you that I loved it. Loved it. But this book. THIS BOOK! Dare I say it? I love it even more! Honestly didn’t think it was possible, and after reading the first one, I wasn’t sure how the story would progress. But lo and behold, progress it did and beautifully at that! But because I always say that I will try to be a better blogger which spares you wonderful people of endless flailing and fangirling, I will try my best to point stuff out as clearly as I can haha!

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ALL OF IT! 

Well there is one teeny tiny detail I could do without but we could talk about that later and for now let us just bathe in this glory of a book. The premise of this book, in my opinion, was better than the first one. But then of course, I would admit that the first book and its premise is absolutely essential in building up what came about in this sequel. I think it also helped that I was really waiting for this book, so much that when I received the email asking if I will review this book I jumped with joy! And people, it DID NOT DISAPPOINT.

I think the dynamics in this book was better. Whether between the characters or the circumstances surrounding them, the movement in the story in relation to the general plot was better, smoother I would say. And the twists and turns in this book! I was on my toes! The book was so fast-paced I didn’t know I was near the end.Things were constantly happening and I wasn’t prepared to leave the world just yet when it ended!

I think that the character development on all the characters was significant. Especially on Galian. Oh that man! In this book, we see more of what kind of a man Galian really is. He finds his niche and his voice in the political battlefield and is becoming his own man so to speak. Theo has always been this strong, kick-ass girl but here her fears and insecurities were shown. She was shown as a regular girl like everybody else, afraid and in-love. But then you also see this sense of responsibility on both of them which endeared me to them even more. Frankly, they’ve got good heads on top of their necks.

And can we just talk about Kader? I always knew something was up with him! In a good way anyway. I knew from the start there was more to him than meets the eye and man was I right! Like Kader, other characters in the book were also brought to light fairly well. They were relevant, and I appreciate that. I mean, even the king was shown in a different light even just for a few lines.

In my previous review of The Island, I said that by the end of the first book, you tend to doubt the side you choose. Well, in this book, my point is explored and elaborated, and you wouldn’t know where your loyalties will lie. If I may say though, I am all for Queen Korina and all her glorious beauty. Just saying.

The political game, the conspiracies, the pressure, and just the intensity of the scenes was so good I could not stop flipping the pages. The political battlefield was very well laid out and executed perfectly. What I also like about the storyline is that it displays the complex of choices and their consequences.Often, books may tend to let the main characters go on a lot of things regarding their decisions whether they are genius or not because they are the hero/heroine of the story. I like how Galian and Theo are treated as who they are. Young and needing mentors.

Oh the feels and the action. THE ACTION. When a book reminds you of the movie “Executive Decision” by Steven Segal, you know it’s action-packed! Being filled with so much action, this might be weird to say but this book made me weep. Yes. Weep. How? By a death that is so unexpected and so unfair that it just devastated me that’s how!

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This is, like I said, a teeny tiny detail but that girl. That girl I could do without to be completely honest. I just think that the girl was useless, and the effect she had in the end was too insignificant for me to care.

Before I end this review, I think that one of the reasons this book just gripped me was it’s attachment to some form of reality. It was closer to how things are, and that adds to the charm of the whole story. By this second book, I just ship Galian and Theo really, really hard I can be in a fans club.

4.5star

Told you I loved it!

***The Chasm (Madion War Trilogy #2) releases today July 12th!!! If you want to know more, below is the synopsis of the book as well as buy links if you are interested in purchasing this book.

***I was provided an ARC by the Sun’s Golden Ray Publishing for review purposes. All opinions are my own and have not been influenced by anyone or anything.

***There may or may not be a giveaway below from the lovely author. Plus a snippet from the book!

Would you date a doctor or a pilot?

 

thechasmebook_600x900They survived The Island, but can they cross The Chasm?

Four months after Prince Galian was discovered alive on a remote island, he’s adjusting slowly to life at the hospital under the Kylaen media’s glare. His promises to Theo remain unfulfilled as fear of his father keeps him from taking concrete action. And the more he learns about the machinations in Kylae, the less sure he is that it’s possible to make a difference.

Across the great Madion Sea, Major Theo Kallistrate struggles to navigate the tricky political waters of Rave’s presidential staff. To make positive change for her people, she must remain relevant and interesting to the Raven media and to the president. When he asks her to deliver a speech on her supposed two-month imprisonment at Mael, she’s not sure she can stomach the lies.

The Chasm is S. Usher Evans’ breathtaking, fast-paced follow-up to The Island, which readers say is “not to be missed.”

 

<a Rafflecopter giveaway


 

Sneak Peek

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Theo

“Bayard won’t be back for at least two hours,” Emilie said, glancing at her watch. “We will probably need to tweak his talking points based on his discussions with the Jervan president. Wesson, take the lead on that.”

He nodded and scribbled in his book.

“Aruna,” Emilie said, nodding at a younger girl I’d seen in a few meetings. She paled at being called on, but held her pen ready. “Find Cannon and tail him. Make sure he stays on message and doesn’t dally in anything…embarrassing.” She paused, a disgusted look crossing her face. “And if he does, make sure nobody knows. Talk to Wesson for crowns if you need it.”

She nodded with a small smile. She might take that mission a little too seriously.

“And ‘neechai,” Emilie said, grabbing my attention. “You and I will spend the afternoon working on your speech. I trust that you’ve resolved whatever…issues you were having.”

I dipped my head, even as dread coiled in my stomach. Emilie moved on to someone else, so I pulled the speech out from the calf-pocket of my jumpsuit. I’d practiced it once or twice while sitting in the pool, reading quietly to myself and envisioning what it would be like to speak in front of the Madion nation leadership.

But even in my head, I still stumbled through the parts about Mael. Stumbling wouldn’t cut it for Emilie, so I prayed for a miracle.

“What’s going on out there?” Emilie said, squinting to her left. I followed her gaze and saw a crowd of people standing at the hotel’s entrance, craning over each other to get a look at whatever was outside.

I stood with the rest of the Ravens and walked into the lobby. The crowd grew more frenzied and then the front doors of the hotel opened.

The crowd pushed in then parted, and in strolled the last person I’d ever expected to see again.

“Amichai.”

He was beautiful, a wide smile on his face and his gait confident. His brown hair was clipped shorter and he no longer wore the beard I’d grown accustomed to seeing on our island. He paused in the middle of the lobby to talk to two journalists who’d approached him, then threw his head back and laughed.

Then his eyes locked with mine.

It was as if everything and everyone disappeared. The corners of his mouth turned up and I suddenly forgot how to breathe. Electricity crackled in the hundred steps that lay between us, and I could’ve sworn I knew exactly what he was thinking. If I’d had any doubt about his reason for arriving in this city, in this hotel, on this day, it vanished in that moment.

As desperately as I wanted to run to him, for some reason, my legs wouldn’t move. Something was keeping me from going to him, but for the life of me I couldn’t remember what it was…

“What in the world is the princeling doing here?” Cannon’s voice pierced my bubble, and I wrenched my eyes away from Galian’s. Where I was, who I was with, and my purpose rushed back to me like waking from the best dream into a nightmare.

I found my voice. “I have no idea.”

“I doubt he’s meddling in the summit. He’d be stupid to disobey his father.” Cannon shrugged mightily. “Then again, the princeling’s never been too smart.”

“Right, he’s an idiot,” I said.

Stupid, stupid princeling. How could he be so irresponsible as to come to Jervan? Especially after his father had forbidden anyone from Kylae to attend, or so Emilie had told us in a meeting earlier that week. And he just walked through the front door, announcing to the entire world that he was there.

I realized I was still watching him when Cannon’s voice again interrupted my thoughts. “Come now, kallistrate, don’t be star struck. He’s just a prince.”

I nodded hastily and turned away from him so I wouldn’t be tempted to stare. “Just a prince, right.”

And my amichai.

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Galian

She was the most beautiful thing I’d ever seen.

I drank in the sight of her: the way her velvet lips parted, how her big brown eyes widened slightly. Her hair pulled back into a bun, her Raven uniform immaculate. The shape of her body. How her dark skin had grown pale. 

“If you’re trying to pretend you don’t know her, perhaps you shouldn’t stare,” Martin snickered beside me. “I’ll stare at her for you. She’s a lot cuter than I remembered.”

“Right,” I said, turning away. “So do you think it worked?”

I had just finished talking to a reporter, feigning ignorance about any sort of summit or why the leaders from three of the four Madion nations were in this city. I’d made sure to talk about my plans to drink heavily and meet some hot Jervanian girls, just to play the part.

I attempted to keep the giddy smile off of my face as I checked into the hotel. When I snuck another glance at her, she’d turned away from me, but the rest of the Ravens kept staring at me, pointing and discussing amongst themselves. I wondered what they were saying.

“I apologize, Your Highness,” the clerk said with all the sincerity of a wet mop. “All of our suites have been reserved by delegations to the summit. The only rooms I have are the basic rooms.”

“I doubt I’ll be sleeping in my own room anyway,” I said with an overly confident grin.

The clerk, predictably, rolled his eyes in disgust.

I caught Martin’s eye, and he snorted.

“Your keys, Your Highness,” he said, sliding over two access cards. “Please be advised that there is a two hundred crown cleaning fee for any…destruction.”

I winked at him then motioned for Martin to grab our bags. I would’ve carried my own, but it would’ve been contrary to the part I was playing.

“You sure faked that well,” Martin said, tossing my bag to me once we were safely in the elevator.

“I wish I could say I’ve never been that much of an asshole before,” I said with a small grimace.


About the Author

View More: http://ashleyvictoriaphotography.pass.us/whitneyevansS. Usher Evans is an author, blogger, and witty banter aficionado. Born in Pensacola, Florida, she left the sleepy town behind for the fast-paced world of Washington, D.C.. There, she somehow landed jobs with BBC, Discovery Channel, and National Geographic Television before finally settling into a “real job” as an IT consultant. After a quarter life crisis at age 27, she decided consulting was for the birds and rekindled a childhood passion for writing novels. She sold everything she owned and moved back to Pensacola, where she currently resides with her two dogs, Zoe and Mr. Biscuit.

Evans is the author of the Razia series, Madion War Trilogy, and Empath, published by Sun’s Golden Ray Publishing.

Check her out on the below social medias:

BOOK REVIEW: Inherited by Freedom Matthews

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If saying ‘I love you’ meant death, would you still say it?

The Wilted Rose, of faery-tale and folklore, is a pirate ship filled with unfortunate souls-each forbidden to love. One such soul is Valencia ‘Lennie’ Roux. Raised in a brothel and an heir to a curse; Lennie never expected to pique the interest of any man. Yet with the arrival of vivid-eyed Nathaniel, she is torn between wanting to know him better and fearing what that knowledge would mean.

With Nathaniel bringing the crew’s total to six, the Wilted Rose sets off in search of the remaining two heirs. They hope that in reuniting, they will convince the faery Sorceress responsible for the curse, to end it. However lurking beneath the water is a long standing enemy of the Wilted Rose; who is determined to thwart their quest and bring down its leaders.

Together the eight heirs fight for survival, friendship and love.

Hey guys! Today I have another review for you. From the synopsis and the cover above, you might think that this is yet another pirate novel. But nope, you are wrong… well not entirely. There are pirates in this novel, and there are ships and guns and sword fights, but the main characters aren’t EXACTLY pirates. But then again, reading into this novel, I got this Pirates of the Caribbean vibe to it which if I’m completely honest, I absolutely love (hey there Jack Sparrow). So I guess we can call it a pirate novel after all haha! Okay, so since this book is yet to be released, this is going to be a spoiler-free review because I am a good girl like that. Shall we dive into it then?

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The writing was good. It wasn’t mind blowing but it was clear and I appreciate that, a lot. Sometimes with fantasy novels, the way the story is written cloud the story itself. You get what I mean?  I like how the author keeps descriptions simple, and easy to understand. Which leads me to my second point.

I love, LOVE, how the places and situations were described by the author. Her descriptions are crisp and vivid, but not lacking in the entire feel of the scene. Reading, I could almost smell the salty sea air and feel the warm Caribbean sunsets.It was spot on. The pacing was good, there were moments when I felt could have gone a bit faster but it didn’t make me impatient enough to just skim through them.

There was enough character development for the characters. ALL OF THEM which was good. Surprisingly, these developments weren’t just thrown into the story. I could see that it was planned meticulously, and they were all woven into the plot so that you wouldn’t really notice it happening. Also, I am a fan of the back stories for all the characters. I love how there was one general back story from which all branched out, but then it reconnects beautifully to the present point of view. The flashbacks were poignant. They were gritty, but still appropriate for being categorized as Young Adult.

I would say that the greater plot twist comes at its ending. There were revelations throughout the story like I said and things that were a bit shocking but it is the few last pages that I felt intrigued. And speaking of shocking things, that death though! I mean, I was reading one moment and the next… what the!

Thinking about it, the curse and the mission was very simple, though vague. And I think ultimately, that was what gave the story’s impact. I think it was how it dealt with something so simple yet so powerful that it has so much impact on a person’s happiness and existence. It asks the question of are actions really enough? How much can words mean or change? The mystery, the fight scenes, the dynamics between the characters is well thought out. No two relationship/interaction was the same. Especially dealing with a lot of characters with varying intensities but almost equal importance, that is hard to do.

And can we just talk about our power girl? She just rocked. She went through a lot and bossed at life!

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The almost insta-love. I felt iffy about it honestly. Well, let’s be fair. It wasn’t really insta-love but still. Iffy about how things started out.

Remember I said that the ending was what gave me the twist? Well, as it is, I don’t really know how I feel about how it generally ended. I don’t exactly hate it, and honestly I couldn’t think of a better one, but I think it lacked mystery. There wasn’t much pull from the ending.

I also have this love-hate relationship with the Sorceress/— (not gonna spoil her ‘true’ identity). I just found her petty, you know, like a whiny tween who finally gets it and makes amends for her temper tantrum. At the same time, I wasn’t sold on the villain. Was she too soft? Maybe. Hardcore as it may sound, I kind of wanted her to be much more evil than what she was made to look/ feel like. Sinister people, that is the goal.

Finally, and I want to say that this is all due to me being a weird human, I just felt that it lacked something. And don’t even bother asking me to explain because I have tried countless times and I just can’t. I tried people. There was just this feeling of disconnect with me and this story and the characters. It’s not that this is a bad book, because it is not a terrible book. I think the best way I could explain it is it wasn’t able to just suck me in. It wasn’t able to pull me in and just envelope me and get a tight grip on me that I have to slap myself to reality. That.

So amidst all this banter. I would say give this book a go. This is my first pirate novel and I liked it.

3.5star

** This book releases on July 12, 2016. If you want to know more about the book and Freedom Matthews, click on the cover picture to go to it’s Goodreads page.

*** This ARC was provided by OfTomes Publishing for review purposes. All opinions are my own and have not been influenced by anyone or anything.

Do you think this is something you would want to read in the future? Why or why not?

BOOK REVIEW: Omen Operation by Taylor Brooke

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After an epidemic spreads through the country, Brooklyn Harper’s high school years come to an abrupt end.

Implanted in a rural camp, Brooklyn and her friends are cut off from their families and the outside world. Each day is filled with combat training to assure their safety against the crazed, belligerent, and deadly— those infected with a mysterious virus.

If the world couldn’t get any crazier, a letter ups the insanity…

After being assured day after day that the world outside their little camp had been compromised, Brooklyn’s cabin-mate, Dawson Winters, finds a letter that turns everything they’d known upside down. There is a world outside the trees that surrounds their camp, and the virus they all feared seems non-existent.

Determined to see it herself, Brooklyn plots with others to attempt an escape…

On the outside, Brooklyn finds the world is as normal as ever. But when they are attacked in the city, they dispose of their attackers far more efficiently than any normal human.. Is there more to Brooklyn and her friends then just being highly trained?

As their exploration continues, the group is faced with impossible feats. Betrayal, love, death, and a powerful sense of camaraderie lead Brooklyn and her friends to fight for their life, their freedom, and most of all, each other.

I have been such a poop… More than a month ago, Taylor reached out to me through my Goodreads account if I would be willing to receive a copy of her book in exchange for an honest review. Of course, as a blogger, I got really excited and said yes. Fast forward to today and I am just typing this review, I honestly feel bad that it took me this long So Taylor, if your are reading this, I am terribly sorry for the delay, but here is the review I promised, and as early in this review as it is, I can say that your book was a surprise for me.

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If asked what is my general thought about this work, I would say that I was really surprised that I took a liking to it. From the moment I saw the premise of the novel, I knew it was something different from what I usually read, but I was always willing to give stuff a try you know? And Taylor did not disappoint me.

Although the idea of making super humans to be used as weapons for warfare is not a new thing in books or in movies, I think what drew me in was that this was kind of a new take on it. I liked how it dealt with genetics, and science that I could actually believe and follow. Some just seem too far out to be ever believable, or imaginable for that matter. Now I know that fictional books are allowed that kind of freedom, however, there are times like in this particular case where some form of attachment to reality benefits the story.

The writing was fluid as well. I could understand what was happening very clearly. The mystery wasn’t in the storytelling but in the plot itself. I like that about it. Even the scenes with much “action” wasn’t too overwhelming to read. How the world was introduced, with flashbacks and all was clear. Even those with absolutely no background in science can enjoy this book. Sometimes when books offer different perspectives of provide flashbacks and the likes, one can get lost and need to retrace your steps. Like I said earlier, the story’s roots to the real world added to this book’s charm.

On some level, I could understand the characters and their actions. I could see where the confusion and survival instincts come from. There was also this underlying rational voice throughout the story which I liked very  much. They weren’t a bunch of stupid, stubborn kids thrown in together because they could kill monsters effectively. They were thinking, calculating, talented teenagers. They were sensible as they are lethal.

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While I appreciate the power dynamics between the teenagers especially the heroine and her male counterpart, I could not say that I ship them as hard as I do those from other novels. I don’t know. Maybe their relationship will develop in the next installments. But as it is right now, I wouldn’t mind if they didn’t end up together, just sayin. Now this is by no means me telling you guys that the tandem is horrible and that they have no chemistry together because they do. There is just something I think lack luster about their interactions in this book. They make a good power couple, but not enough to make me root for them,  at least not yet.

As long as you enjoy bad ass females (and males) kick some monster butt and survive while running from people who want to make you heartless assassins, then I think you should give this book a shot.

3.5star

*  Omen Operation is the first book in The Isolation Series by Taylor Brooke. It was Published January 26, 2016. Click here if you want to know more!

BOOK REVIEW: Creatura by Nely Cab

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HOLY MOTHER I HAVE MISSED YOU GUYS SOOOOOO MUCH!!!! If that statement somehow didn’t let my point across, I don’t know what else will. As the statement with all caps suggest, I have been away for sooo long (longer than I should have been) and I have missed rambling away about my bookish thoughts and interacting with you guys. Oh and if you are new here, Hello! I am Meyan Rose. I love books and talk about them a lot.

Now to the actual point of this post…

Honestly, I cannot remember how in the world did I discover this book because I definitely did not see it on a new release something being that it was published in 2011. However, whatever the case may be, I am still glad (ish) that I discovered this book/series because I think it is a decent read.

Before anything else, I just want to say that this book is YA, and people may contest to this but to me, it is straight up a romance novel peppered with fantasy. This, to me, is one of those books I have mentioned before whose main base is romance which I may have also expressed before, is not my exactly my favorite. Having said that, it was surprising to me that this book didn’t turn me off. And although it had a sort of Insta-love (ish) situation, the twists of fate the characters went through was enough of a distraction to me. And thank goodness for not having a love triangle!!!

Also, I loved how the author mixed mythology within the story. I think that how she introduced them, and personified them was very well played. It was not the Percy Jackson kind of mythology-meets-reality kind of plot. The author took the genre to a different route. Plus, can I just say that mythology and literature in general was my favorite subject in high school? Other than Biology that is. I could talk on and on and on during class discussions about mythology and literary classics my teacher would tell me to just stop raising my hand.

The beginning of the story also gave such a gray feel to it, almost sinister. However, that quickly changed and not even a quarter into the book and the lovey-dovey mood was just all over the place. And from supposed teenagers too! What I mostly like about the book is how it has restored my faith in gentlemen still existing in this world. Like yaaasss!!! David was just swoon-worthy. I’m telling you ladies out there, swoon… I mean, he is technically not a teenager right? He is probably a few thousand years old, so he is absolutely of legal age.

If you ask me if there was one thing I absolutely hated about the book, I would say there is none really. But, there are stuff that I felt more than iffy about.

I just could not get over how incredibly stubborn Isis was bout the ex-boyfriend. Like, girl! Get your sh*t together and spare your friends from the scare! I understand that it was for the drama and it helped explain one teeny tiny detail but really? Not calling the police or not telling ANYONE for that matter about an obviously dangerous person? Seriously?

Also, there are probably huge cultural differences from the author’s perspective and where I come from and I totally respect that. But my mother would never allow me to leave with a guy I just knew that school year, who by the way became my boyfriend during the past few weeks, and be away from home for two whole months to a far away country. Just NO. And again, I say this from a readers perspective, and not judging if you would do the same if your were in her shoes and her age.

The writing was clear but was, shall I say, almost had a mysterious feel to it. Not the mystery that thrillers had. Just this light sort of mystery to it. Also, the story and the scenes were plotted out really well. The only issue I probably had was that some of the scenes can become too intense for the scene itself… get what I mean? Mostly from Isis. Don’t get me wrong, I think Isis is not half bad as well. I think Isis is the perfect heroine for the story. She acts her age, even with all the almost steamy scenes. She reflects the age’s confusions, naivete, outbursts, and curiosity. She IS a teenager, which some books now seem to ignore.

So, while I honestly think that it was a good read, I have to say this is not one to make me absolutely want to read the next. Having said that, I also think that with the proper audience, this is a great book.

3.5star

And that’s it!! Thank you for reading this little ramble of mine.

Have you read this book? What do you think about it?

What was your favorite subject in school?

Water’s Wrath is out now!

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Whew this is a very busy week for cover reveals and book releases! Today, and I am admittedly a bit late on this, I have for you the Water’s Wrath release! This is such an exciting time for me as one of my favorite series comes out with another book! Here are all the links you need, all the information you need about the author, and …. wait for it…. A GIVEAWAY! (If you know that reference then we are sisters indeed).

Here are the links for you:

                             

Now for the giveaway! This giveaway is open only to residents of the Philippines. I am going to try to include everyone in my next giveaways 🙂 I designed the notepads myself. Any of the prizes should not be sold. Giveaway ends on May 27 11:59 PM EST.

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Always  a  Proud Member

Elise Kova, YA Fantasy Author

THE TOWER TAKES CARE OF ITS OWN

Top Ten Tuesday: Bookworm Delights told in GIFs!

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Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the BookishGo and check them out because they have some amazing reviews for you!

This weeks theme was things that bookish people find some kind of joy or satisfaction or warm fuzzy feelings from aka Bookworm Delights! So of course, I am down for it because I know most of you wonderful people have these kinds of things too! Then I had this crazy idea of tell my story with GIFs. I am so excited to see what you guys list!

The smell of a book

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I know I am not the only book sniffer around here! There is just something about the smell, and feel of a physical book that gives a strange satisfying feeling.

Book Mail

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Need I say more?

That moment when you find yourself nodding while you say “Right?!?! Let’s drink to that!”

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There are those rare, precious moments when you just want to scream “Yaaasss honey!” To Kill a Mockingbird gave me that.

 

Book Sales!

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Yup. It seems like money hates you and magically leaves your wallet during book sales. I feel ya honey, I feel ya!

Discovering a good book from thrift shops (and seeing marks from the previous owner)

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I love this. Maybe it’s weird. Is it just me? I feel like reading previously owned books, and seeing the things they marked or the things they wrote or the ones they highlighted make me wonder what kind of person bought this book, read it, and just decided to give it away. I wonder where they are from, what they do. I try to guess their personality by the marks on their books. I feel like I become a part of the book’s journey.

Rainy days + warm drink + cozy couch (or bed) + fluffy blanket + socks

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Very few comes close to how good this feels. VERY FEW.

When one loves a book you recommend

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This is probably the one time I would be happy when someone says this to me. Don’t you just love it when you introduce someone to a book and 2 days later she says

“This is all your fault.”

When another gets your reference from a book

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Admit it. Booknerd inside jokes are the best.

That moment when you finish a book and tries to process everything

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Just. One. More. Chapter.

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I give myself a good laugh every time I say this to myself and then look at my phone and it’s freakin’ 5AM. What is so satisfying is that despite the lack of sleep, I just fed the hungry reader in me and I am fine with that. Plus I now know who killed the wife 🙂

The thrill of choosing which book to buy/read first

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This, people, is the exact opposite of a reading slump.

Conversations with fellow booklovers

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Oh my goodness this is just heaven. Having someone you can squeal and fangirl with is sooooo satisfying not to mention comforting haha! Isn’t that why you are here right now?

That feeling when you enter a bookstore/library

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I don’t know why but when I saw this, I imagine the Game of Thrones theme playing. It’s like entering the realm of wonder. MAKE. WAY.

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OR, you can enter the other way and say, “I got this”.

And that is my list for this week!

What are your Bookworm Delights?

Do any of you experience the ones I listed?

 

 

The Island Release Blitz!

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You guys, this is the day! Today is the release day of the first Madion War Trilogy book The Island! Here are all the links you need, plus a snippet of book. There is also another giveaway (besides the one I have in yesterday’s post) from the lovely S. Usher Evans for some awesome swag! If you wish to know what I think about this book and enter my giveaway, then click here.

Buy The Island for eBook, Paperback, and Hardcover.

Giveaway from the Author

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The Island Sneak Peek

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Theo

 

“Yep,” he observed, with a smirk on his face. Up close, he was every bit as handsome as I’d seen in pictures. “You definitely got what you deserved. Shouldn’t have shot at me.”

“You shouldn’t have invaded my country.”

His eyes widened for a moment and I thought I’d finally done something to wipe that smile off his face. To my supreme annoyance, he tilted his head back and let out a throaty laugh.

“Oh, you are witty,” he said, nodding. “And technically right. But it wasn’t my decision. I was, as they say, just following orders.”

“And I was just following orders when I blew you out of the sky.”

“Aren’t we at an impasse then?” He seemed to be enjoying this conversation. He looked down at the side of my ship and read the inscription. “Theo, huh? Well, you must be a pretty high ranking pilot then. I hear the Ravens only allow you to put your name on your ship after you’ve survived plenty of battles.”

I moved out of anger, but the pain in my legs came roaring up my body. “Please let me die in peace,” I asked, unable to look at him.

“Oh, you aren’t going to die today. But it would probably be safer if I pulled you out. I don’t like the look of that fuel leak.”

He leaned into my small cabin. If I’d had half a mind, I could’ve snapped his neck, but it was hard enough just to breathe. He found my seat strap and unhooked it, then lifted me out by my arms. I couldn’t help but scream.

“Yeow, buddy,” he said, stopping. He put one hand over his ear and muttered. “You sure got a girly scream.”

“My legs are caught. Just leave me here. I’m as good as dead anyway.”

“Naw, then who am I going to talk to while I wait to get picked up?” He sounded like he was waiting for dinner. “C’mon, we can get you out of here. Just take a deep breath. One…two…”

I didn’t hear him count to three as he yanked my legs out of the mess and I screamed again, the pain so bad I almost lost consciousness. But, blessedly, it subsided, and the next thing I knew, he was laying me on the ground.

“There, now, Theo of Raven, let’s take a look at you,” he said, taking my helmet off.

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Galian

Theo was a girl.

A pretty girl.

I’d always thought Raven women were more interesting looking than Kylaen women—with their olive skin and black hair, they seemed to draw my attention. And this girl, something about her made my head spin.

Even with her mangled, bloody legs.

They were a sight: dark red staining her gray jumpsuit.

“Thank you, Dr. Maitland,” I said, cracking open the bag he’d given me and sliding on the pair of latex gloves.

She murmured something. The amount of blood she’d lost was a real concern, and she was most likely concussed. I would worry about the head injury later; it wouldn’t matter much if she died from blood loss.

“What are you doing?” she croaked.

“Pardon the invasion of privacy,” I said, flashing her my trademark smile.

I unzipped her jumpsuit and pulled it down, exposing a white bra and underwear and nothing else. Immediately, her skin puckered with goosebumps as I tossed away the soaked dark gray suit.

“Are you still with me, Theo?”

She blinked, but didn’t respond.

“Okay, I’m going to examine you now,” I said, leaning over her bare legs. I pressed my hands to her hips, and she reacted, swiftly, sitting up so fast she nearly whacked her forehead to mine.

“Get your filthy hands off of me,” she hissed, her breath touching my face.

About the Author

View More: http://ashleyvictoriaphotography.pass.us/whitneyevansS. Usher Evans is an author, blogger, and witty banter aficionado. Born in Pensacola, Florida, she left the sleepy town behind for the fast-paced world of Washington, D.C.. There, she somehow landed jobs with BBC, Discovery Channel, and National Geographic Television before finally settling into a “real job” as an IT consultant. After a quarter life crisis at age 27, she decided consulting was for the birds and rekindled a childhood passion for writing novels. She sold everything she owned and moved back to Pensacola, where she currently resides with her two dogs, Zoe and Mr. Biscuit.

Evans is the author of the Razia series, Madion War Trilogy, and Empath, published by Sun’s Golden Ray Publishing.

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