Monday, 6 December 2021

Never Fall For Your Fiancée (The Merriwell Sisters #1) by Virginia Heath

 




A story that starts out strong enough, witty and funny, but who then goes downhill into a complete and total farce. -__-

The level of insanity is only surpassed by the level of 'drama llama' soap opera idiocy that takes place towards the middle/end of the story. *pulls hair*

The level of miscommunication between the main characters towards the end is off the charts. Hugh says something and wants Minerva to ear another thing! Which is 'funny' (not really), since he's such a skilled story teller! *Hysterical laughter ensues*

The main character starts out as "oh, I can never marry because I'm incapable of loving just one woman, woe is on me and on my fickle blood" *dramatically raises hand towards temple and sighs*

Thing IS, the guy is the image of responsibility towards his tenants. And his friends _or, cookie eating friend as it is_ and even towards people who need saving.

Apparently the guy was traumatized by some big mess involving his father spoiler , the guy had a mistress, but his mother was okay with it all, due to reasons. LOL

So when he finally knows the truth, he goes: "yupi, then everything is well, I'm not a scoundrel!, so I can marry Minerva" o_O

Honestly the only character worth saving is Payne, the butler. His sarcastic wit towards the insanity that was happening was refreshing.

Everything else was just too much! 

That paid actress who loved to drink too much.

The criminal parent.

The marriage obsessed mother.

And the damned writing style, which makes it seem that you're reading the lines out of a damned play.

JFC, I was tired by the end of all this drama!

Oh, and the "sexy times"? Oh, they're as sexy as watching Mr. Collins ask for more boiled potatoes.

For crying out loud! *screams in frustration*

Friday, 26 November 2021

Omega’s Virtue: Part One (The Hartwell Sisters Saga #2) by Flora Quincy

 





I really liked the fist book of this series: Omega's Gambit. It is witty, full of tension, it has amazing and period appropriate dialogue, and it's really, really hot! So I was very excited when the author gave me the opportunity to review Omega's Virtue Part One.

Now, for the good things!
As with Omega's Gambit, Omega's Virtue Part One has some outstanding research, I really felt fully immersed in the time period (alternate reality though it may be, given the omegaverse bit). The dialogue was snappy, there were very interesting side characters, and we got to see how the characters from the first book, both of whom I adored, were doing. 
Extra points for body diversity, since the heroine is quite voluptuous and this is never commented on negatively. 
And, of course, it's sweet omegaversa, which is such a rarity, so you better snatch it up!

The not so good...
There were a few things that meant I just couldn't enjoy it as much as I enjoyed the first book. 
The most glaring of them is that the book's structure is very odd: characters and situations are introduced but only ever explained much further ahead, this makes for very confusing reading.
I also had a hard time connecting to the main characters: Beatrice was very irrational at times, and honestly neither male character was likeable. There also seemed to be little respect between the trio, and in the first book the main couple's relationship strongest point was just that: how balanced and full of respect it was. I really missed that in this book. 

As a whole the first book was a much smoother and better polished work than this one, which is odd because it seems to have been the author's first published work, but that just means I have high hopes for the sequel: Omega’s Virtue: Part Two.


Flora Quincy's Facebook

Buy Omega's Virtue Part One @ amazon

Tuesday, 9 November 2021

The Bone Charmer (The Bone Charmer #1) by Breeana Shields

 




TW's: Death of loved ones

This is a brilliant imaginative story, vividly drawn, of a world in which past/present and future can be seen in a reading of bones, by those who have the power to do so.

The beginning can be a little misleading, in the sense that there's this moment in which the reader can be left thinking, "oh, this is just the usual ya romance with a love triangle", but don't let yourself be fooled, because this is so much more!

Told in a dual pov perfectly done, the story at times bitter and gruesome, had the perfect balance.

I was completely invested in the two pov's, something that I didn't thought was going to happen; but there's so much happening, so many twists and turns!

And heartbreak, and gruesome parts, so get ready for that.

Author Official Site

Tuesday, 2 November 2021

Once More Upon a Time by Roshani Chokshi

 




A cute mash up of some fairy tale retellings with a very original story at his heart: what if a couple in love forgot about each other. What then?

At times, the insanity of it all ( a cape who thinks itself a horse and a honey badger magician) felt like this could be a companion to the movie Ella Enchanted.

Fairy tales on acid, lol, I remember thinking while reading about the cape/horse mumblings.

But despite all that, the story does maintain that classic fairy tale tone.

The romance?

Well it's not as epic as the author has accustomed us to, and the story does end up falling into the tradicional fairy tale category.

I liked it, it is fast paced and very compelling, but I probably won't re-read it.

Author Official Site

Sunday, 31 October 2021

The Bone Houses by Emily Lloyd-Jones

 




Hello, my favorite 2021 read; welcome! :D

A mythology driven dark fantasy, action packed and with a dash of romance?

Yes, please! *big, stupid grin, even while remembering all those awakened corpses and the heartbreaks they cause*

Wow, what a story. *barely resists the urge to add another exclamation mark*

If you'd told me that I was going to find a favorite read in a book with zombies in it, in which the main character is a gravedigger with a chip on her shoulder... I would tell you that, yes, THAT sounds just my thing! LOL

Loved, loved, loved this!

The writing style is so good, the characters so well developed. The relationships are believable and poignant.

It is a gripping adventure, a perfect combination of gruesome moments interspaced with dark humor that make this such a compelling read.

I also loved the balance that was developed between the characters and how they complete themselves. Adaryn (Ryn) is such a physical character. She's fierce and courageous, and she'll do anything for her family.

As for Ellis, he's the quiet one. But you can see that his depth runs deep.

He's the scholar, he has a physical handicap and he has a secret.

Then there's the goat, of which you'll just have to read about.

As for me, I can't wait to read the author's new book that takes place in this same world. August 2022 can't come soon enough!

Author's Official Site

Friday, 29 October 2021

Spooky October: witches, ghosts and much more

 These are some of the fantasy books that have caught my attention during this month. That means I may read them in the next few weeks or in the next five years! 

Considering how little I have read in the past years, the later is more likely. :D

In common they seem to have a compelling dark element. Except for the Roshani Chokshi book.

I am actually reading that one, and it's completely 'bananas' in a 'Ella Enchanted' movie version kind of way. I was not expecting that, LOL

Marissa Meyer returns to the world of retellings with the story of Rumpelstilskin.

The synopsis for "Dark Infinity" sounds amazing, so I have great hopes for it.

I also haven't read a Mercedes Lackey book in ages, and I'm always game for what sounds as a interesting retelling.




"Witch of Ware Woods" sounds interesting, although the description of physical or psychological traits of the characters in the synopsis, tends to leave me a little suspicious. In this one, we're supposed to have a charming character. Let's see about that, LOL

To break the fantasy domain, "All the Feels" by Olivia Dade, seems just like my type of contemporary romance.
"Sistersong", gives me strong Patricia Mckillip vibes so I'm curious about it.

"Little Thieves", has quite the synopsis. I'm curious to see if it lives up to it, because if it does, it will be amazing.



Thursday, 28 October 2021

Long Lost by Jacqueline West

 





I'll have to admit that I became a little obsessed with this book, once I saw its cover and read the synopsis: I was so sure that it was going to be this "magical unicorn" TM (lol) middle grade story!

You know, those great middle books that are just perfection and over which you fell in love with.

Unfortunately for me, that was not the case with this one.

I found this a case of a great concept, that could use some more development and then yes, it would have been great.

At least for me, that is.

This is a story about sisterly bonds and inapt/absent parents; and the consequences of it.

The writing is practical and to the point. But when the story enters the magical realism/ ghost scenario, that writing style just felt lacking and too plain for what was being told.

 If "only" the characters/relationships/atmosphere had a little more soul!

Oh, well.

It's a calm and mostly sedate story with a few creepy paragraphs, and then it ends in that calmly manner.


Wednesday, 29 September 2021

Neon Gods (Dark Olympus #1) by Katee Robert

 




DNF at 60%

I'm always up for a good retelling, but as a retelling this one sucks *pardon the pun* big times.

There's no world building; the characters live in a place called "Olympus" and there's some sort of energy force surrounding the place, so that they're hidden from the rest of the world. But if they force it, supposedly they'll be able to leave. Reminded me the way Themyscira was shown in Wonder Woman.

How does this exist?

Don't know.

Why?

I don't know! Because these are not Gods! Just people taking on roles.

Once again... why?

Who knows! o_O

As for the character development between the dark brooding fluffy dude and the golden ingénue... well, good luck with that, because there isn't any!  LOL :D

They just go around f*****g all the time and then there's the exhibitionist sex scene (I mean scenes, bc there's Hades and Persephone and on a stage another couple doing it), and the couple on the stage just reminded me of a parody to FSOG and I just couldn't handle it anymore bc I kept seeing a trussed up chicken. LOL

But if that's your thing, well it seems like the "fun" never ends! ;)

Author Official Site

Tuesday, 7 September 2021

Curses by Lish McBride

 




Melissa Meyer says that this was "The Beauty and the Beast retelling that she had been waiting for".

Well, then she must have been waiting for an historical romance/ steampunk story with very small traces of Beauty and the Beast! Because, gawds, this was not what I was expecting from a Beauty and the Beast retelling... but I've read quite a few retellings, so I've become a bit picky...

Okay, I'm going to stop with the burn.

Maybe.

This is not a bad story per se, but it is a bit of a mess.

The beginning was quite boring, there's tons of pointless descriptions regarding characters looks  and ornaments, and clothes patterns and things as such.

Everyone is beautiful and dashing. There's queer characters, non binary and poc.

So, check, check... and check. Sorry, but it felt a bit too much on the nose, when we start getting educated on pronouns regarding another pointless character.

There's strong family relationships in this book, which is probably the best part of it.

Tevin Dumont, our "Beauty" has very strong bonds with his siblings and with his cousin Val (Valerie?), a tomboy who is described as a bit of a horny gunslinger; Wild, Wild, West meets Gossip Girl in Regency. -___-

His parents are con artists, and in this one, his mother is the one who steals the Beast's flower.

So, Tevin gets to meet Merit, our Beast who has been under a curse because she didn't want to marry some lecherous old man... so she got cursed by a Godling, vain and horrid fairy godmothers.

Problem number... I forget, So we have a very accepting society regarding gender identity, but women still are being sold like cattle.

Okay...

The curse

Well, there's a temporary "cure" for it. A tonic with some side effects, but it is something that allows Merit and the other members of the ton who have been cursed (there's mentions to other fairytales, since there's a support group for the afflicted) to have a reprieve from the thing.

I felt like that cheapened the thing?

The romance

It practically doesn't exist! The characters end up together because that's what supposed to happen, but the relationship between them was really weak.

I can see this becoming a series, because there were so many characters in it, but if it does happen I will not be following it.

It had some interesting ideas, but in the end the importance given to clutter was just too much.

Also, what was with the Prince's tail??

Author Official Site


Sunday, 4 July 2021

The Heir and the Spare by Kate Stradling

 




TW: BULLYING, GRAPHIC DOMESTIC ABUSE (SISTER AGAINST SISTER), TORTURE

I started this by just reading the beginning to see if I'd give it a chance later and ended up reading it non-stop to the end in just a few hours, it's one of those rare highly addictive books.

I would have rated this 5 stars if it were not for the GoT levels of violence against the main protagonist, as a survivor myself it was highly triggering - and what is more, ill treated in its resolution, [SPOILER] everything is forgiven by the protagonist, which I find hard to believe, someone who is violently bullied for 4 years doesn't just fall in love with their abuser (hopefully!) especially since Jaoven started off by showing he hadn't changed at all, no matter how much he changed his tune throughout the book. I personally could NEVER have forgiven him, and I was disappointed that Iona did forgive him. [END SPOILER]
That being said it is literally the only bad thing I have to say about this book! I am in awe of Stradling's gift for writing and plot! This was such a joy to read, as I said I could not put it down and I resented any interruptions to my reading.

If you can withstand the trigger warnings I highly recommend this book, but please be warned that they are to be taken seriously.


Kate Stradling's official website 

Buy The Heir and the Spare @ Kobo


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