Monday, June 29, 2015

Review: Light a Candle for the Beast by Echo Shea

Title: Light a Candle for the Beast
Author: Echo Shea
Publication: November 26th 2014 by Roane Publishing
Genre: Fantasy ~ Paranormal
Purchase: Amazon
Rating: 4/5

Review copy was provided in exchange for an honest review.

  
If you’ve ever been caught in a riptide, pulled down into the water, then you know me. Or, more accurately, what I’m like when I’m angry.

Delia was beautiful, smart, and kind. He wasn’t. He said he loved her, but he didn’t know what love was. He was manipulative and cruel—more than a thief. A beast.

All she wanted was a rose…

These are the words on my sister’s grave. Her sadness, her obsession, forever a reminder I didn’t--couldn’t save her.

I’m not vindictive or cruel. I’m simply as the river--my memory is winding and my reach is long. I watched him steal her beauty, her essence. Watched him become a beast. He thought he'd get away with it, thought he'd go free.

I lay a rose upon my sister's grave.

Light a candle for the beast.


I really liked Light a Candle for the Beast. In fact, it's one of the best short stories I've read in a while and it made me want more. The reason I loved it so much was that it isn't only a Beauty and the Beast retelling but it also features Greek mythology, which happens to be one my favorite things ever.

Aside from it being a retelling and featuring Greek mythology I also liked it because it was a rather dark story. I love stories that are dark so this one was really something for me. This certainly isn't your typical Beauty and the Beast re-imagining. But that's what I loved about it.

Another thing I liked was the writing. It was really beautifully writting, in my opinion. That's what stood out to me the most, actually, when I started the book. I would've loved to read a full story in this world but even though it's a really short story, it didn't feel rushed at all. I thought it was really good as it was. 

And also, the main character is a Naiad. How freaking cool is that? I've always wanted to read a story with a Naiad in the lead.




       About the Author:

An Urban Fantasy writer, I like charaters with an edge and most of my plots are character driven. I've been featured in Portals: A Fantasy Anthology, Spooktacular Seductions, and two books of my own--Manor of Sweet Souls: Gladys Celebrates and Light a Candle for the Beast. I'm currently working on the next and longer piece for Gladys--what can I say? That troll just gets me.


Saturday, June 27, 2015

Stacking The Shelves: June 27, 2015

Stacking The Shelves is a weekly meme hosted @ Tynga's Reviews.




From Library:
The Tomb of Atuan by Ursuala K. Le Guin
The Shock of the Fall by Nathan Filer
Daughters of Rome by Kate Quin
Keltische Mythen by Miranda Jane Green
I don't go to the library a lot but I went because during the summer there's a double loan period of six weeks. And I found some really great books. I already read The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and loved it. In fact, I'm going back to get the second book. I also read The Shock of the Fall and you can read my review of it here.


For Review:
Until We Meet Again by Renee Collins
I'm absolutely in love with this cover! 

For Review:
The Drafter by Kim Harrison
I'm soooo excited to have gotten Kim Harrison's new book for review. And it has time travel, guys!



For Review:
Light a Candle for the Beast by Echo Shea
Received for review from the author. Can't wait to read it!






Leave me links to your hauls so I can stop by, please! :)



Friday, June 26, 2015

Review: The Shock of the Fall by Nathan Filer

Title: The Shock of the Fall
Author: Nathan Filer
Publication: January 7th 2014 by HarperCollins

Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Kobo
Rating: 3/5

  
WINNER OF THE COSTA BOOK OF THE YEAR 2013

'I'll tell you what happened because it will be a good way to introduce my brother. His name's Simon. I think you're going to like him. I really do. But in a couple of pages he'll be dead. And he was never the same after that.'

Debut novel about one man's descent into mental illness, following the death of his brother in childhood. Filer is a mental health nurse with a unique and startling insight into mental illness, and this book highlights a much-neglected subject.


The Shock of the Fall was totally different from the books I usually read. I had never read about a character that's dealing with mental health issues. I thought it was a very real book and I liked it for sure. But I just don't think this is my kind of topic per se.

I found the story a bit unsettling but at the same time it was a sort of addicting read. Once I started reading the book I had a hard time putting it down. I actually ended up reading 200 pages without stopping when I started it and after that it didn't take very long to finish it. Not many books manage to grip me like that, that's for sure.

It's sort of hard to say anything about the actual story. It's just something you just gotta read for yourself. It got better and better the more I read in the book and I must say that the writing style was pretty unique. I also liked how the story jump to different times, though it can get a little confusing.

I have to admit that I don't know a lot about schizophrenia but I thought the author did a really good job in capturing Matthew's thoughts and feelings. It all felt very realistic and for a first time author I thought this book was pretty remarkable. 




       About the Author:

       Website | Twitter

Nathan Filer is a writer and lecturer in Creative Writing.

His stand-up poetry has been a regular fixture at festivals and spoken-word events across the UK, and has been broadcast on BBC 3 television and radio 4, 7 and 5 Live. He is also a BBC Best New Filmmaker and holds an MA in Creative Writing from Bath Spa University.

He lives in Bristol with his partner and their baby daughter.


Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Waiting On Wednesday: The Sword of Summer by Rick Riordan

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking The Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.
--




The Sword of Summer by Rick Riordan
Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard #1
October 6th 2015 by Disney Hyperion Books 


 
Magnus Chase has always been a troubled kid. Since his mother’s mysterious death, he’s lived alone on the streets of Boston, surviving by his wits, keeping one step ahead of the police and the truant officers.

One day, he’s tracked down by a man he’s never met—a man his mother claimed was dangerous. The man tells him an impossible secret: Magnus is the son of a Norse god.

The Viking myths are true. The gods of Asgard are preparing for war. Trolls, giants and worse monsters are stirring for doomsday. To prevent Ragnarok, Magnus must search the Nine Worlds for a weapon that has been lost for thousands of years.

When an attack by fire giants forces him to choose between his own safety and the lives of hundreds of innocents, Magnus makes a fatal decision.

Sometimes, the only way to start a new life is to die . . .


       

Rick Riordan, guyssss! 





What's your WOW pick of the week?
Leave me a link to your post so I can stop by!



Saturday, June 20, 2015

Stacking The Shelves: June 20, 2015

Stacking The Shelves is a weekly meme hosted @ Tynga's Reviews.



Gifted:
Beyond the Cut by Sarah Castille
St. Martin's Press send this to me because something went wrong with sending the e-arcs out for the blog tour. Super nice of them and I'm so in love with that cover!


Gifted:
The Offer by Karina Halle
"Those McGregor brothers are nothing but trouble..." 
Ain't that the truth! ;)
Thanks again to Christina from Booksane for gifting this awesome book to me! 

For Review:
Ruin & Rule by Pepper Winters
I was so ready to buy this book but then I got it for review. *cheers* There are no words for how excited I am to read Ruin & Rule. Pepper Winters is the best!


For Review:
Another Day by David Levithan
YES I GOT APPROVED! <3






Leave me links to your hauls so I can stop by, please! :)




Thursday, June 18, 2015

Blog Tour: Beat by Vi Keeland: Review + Giveaway






Title: Beat
Author: Vi Keeland
Publication: June 14th 2015

Genre: Adult ~ Contemporary Romance
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo
Rating: 4/5

Review copy was provided in exchange for an honest review.

  
From New York Times and USA Today Bestseller, Vi Keeland, comes a steamy new standalone novel about a rockstar. Or two.

Dimpled smile of a boy
Hard body of a man
Sings like an angel
Fucks like the devil
I was stuck between a rock(star) and a hard place.

At fifteen, his poster hung on my bedroom wall. At twenty-five his body hovered over mine. Every girl's fantasy became my reality. I was dating a rockstar. Yet I was slowly falling for another man. The problem was--the two men--they shared a tour bus.

Flynn Beckham was the opening act.
Dylan Ryder was the headliner.
What happens when the opening act begins to shine so bright, it seems to dim everything else in its wake?

I'll tell you what happens. Things get ugly.

Author's note - Beat is a full-length standalone novel. Due to strong language and sexual content, this book is not intended for readers under the age of 18.


I definitely enjoyed Beat more than Throb. Don't get me wrong, I was a huge fan of Throb but I can't help liking Beat a tad more. All because of one rockstar named Flynn Beckham.

So Beat was a really good book. I knew right from the start that this would be even greater than Throb because I already loved Flynn in that book so to have a book featuring him was just the best. Lucky was a great character too. 


*Minor spoilers. Highlight with caution. ;)*
The only minor point was the cheating that happened in this book. The odd thing is I never really read a book where someone cheated in. I'm not going to say who it is because I don't want to spoil the book to anyone but it kind of bothered me. I never considered myself being one of those people who would feel a bit weird about it in a book. Again, this was just a really minor point with me but still... 

But other than that I loved the book. Flynn was even more awesome than I remembered, especially with his little niece. Ovaries go boom! Also Frozen got mentioned a lot and that was just the best! 

I really like this series. I always enjoy books about rockstars but these are really top favorites of mine. And I really hope there will be another book like this because I love them.







       About the Author:


Vi Keeland is a native New Yorker with three children that occupy most of her free time, which she complains about often, but wouldn't change for the world. She is a bookworm and has been known to read her kindle at stop lights, while styling her hair, cleaning, walking, during sporting events, and frequently while pretending to work. She is a boring attorney by day, and an exciting smut author by night!


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Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Waiting On Wednesday: Untamed by A.G. Howard

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking The Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.
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Untamed by A.G. Howard
Splintered #3.5
December 15th 2015 by Amulet Books

 
Alyssa Gardner went down the rabbit hole and took control of her destiny. She survived the battle for Wonderland and the battle for her heart. In this collection of three novellas, join Alyssa and her family as they look back at their favorite memories of Wonderland. In Six Impossible Things, Alyssa recalls the most precious moments of her human life with Jeb and her immortal life with Morpheus. Alyssa’s mother reminisces about her own time in Wonderland and how she gave up the crown to rescue the man who would become her husband in The Boy in the Web. And Morpheus delves into Jeb’s memories of the events of Splintered in The Moth in the Mirror, available in print for the first time.


       
I've been a huge fan of this series from the start so of course I can't wait to get my hands on this book! 
Also, it comes out a day before my birthday. 




What's your WOW pick of the week?
Leave me a link to your post so I can stop by!




Monday, June 15, 2015

Review: Dark Horse by Michelle Diener

Title: Dark Horse
Author: Michelle Diener

Publication: June 15th 2015 by Eclipse
Genre: Adult ~ Science Fiction

Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo
Rating: 5/5

Review copy was provided in exchange for an honest review.

  
Some secrets carry the weight of the world.

Rose McKenzie may be far from Earth with no way back, but she's made a powerful ally--a fellow prisoner with whom she's formed a strong bond. Sazo's an artificial intelligence. He's saved her from captivity and torture, but he's also put her in the middle of a conflict, leaving Rose with her loyalties divided.

Captain Dav Jallan doesn't know why he and his crew have stumbled across an almost legendary Class 5 battleship, but he's not going to complain. The only problem is, all its crew are dead, all except for one strange, new alien being.

She calls herself Rose. She seems small and harmless, but less and less about her story is adding up, and Dav has a bad feeling his crew, and maybe even the four planets, are in jeopardy. The Class 5's owners, the Tecran, look set to start a war to get it back and Dav suspects Rose isn't the only alien being who survived what happened on the Class 5. And whatever else is out there is playing its own games.

In this race for the truth, he's going to have to go against his leaders and trust the dark horse.


Starting Dark Horse I was excited to read it but I was also a little worried I wasn't going to like it as much as the author's other titles because, although I love science-fiction, I haven't actually read many books in the genre. But I should've known not to worry because this is Michelle Diener we're talking about and I ended up absolutely loving this book!

This book is mainly about Rose McKenzie, a human from earth who gets abducted by aliens and taken captive for three months until she escapes with the help of Sazo, an artificial intelligence. The story starts pretty much in the middle of Rose escaping until eventually she gets picked up (again with the help of Sazo) by Captain Dav Jallan and his crew. This is where her loyalties start start getting divided.

This book was all kinds of awesome so I'm not sure where to begin.I love stories that feature aliens, especially artificial intelligences like Sazo was. Sazo scared me a little bit in the beginning because he seemed so out of control and reckless but he ended up as my favorite character in the entire book, with Rose coming close as second favorite. 

Rose was also an amazing character. I just loved her attitude to her situation. She never gave up and she stayed loyal to Sazo the entire time while also not wanting to betray Dav and the others. And I loved Sazo and Rose's relationship and I loved how Rose refered to Sazo as Sherlock Holmes and herself being his Watson. They were really a good team and it was just so endearing to me. 

Dav Jallan is yet another favorite character in the book. Just like Rose I really enjoyed reading his point of view. I liked even though he and his race were aliens to Rose, they did resemble humans mostly, just bigger and with pointy ears. But anyway, he was great! I loved the way Rose intrigued him and the chemistry they had with each other. 

Nearing the end of the book I found myself wanting to read slower (but of course I couldn't) because I didn't want this fantastic story to end. The pace of it was steady, the world and character building was excellent (like always) and although I probably say this about all the author's books, Dark Horse is absolutely a top favorite of mine. I can't recommend this book highly enough!




       Quotes:

She'd ended up in Tolkien's Undying Lands, or some fantasy landscape inhabited by elves. And not the children's book kind, the Peter Jackson Lord of the Rings Legolas kind, thank goodness.

"You're like Sherlock Holmes, Sazo. Scary, scary smart, and with an underveloped sense of empathy. But Sherlock Holmes was absolutely a person, and so are you."

"Thank you, Sazo. This means a lot to me. And you're mellowing. Not going straight for death and destruction. I'm calling it the Watson Effect."
"You should call it the Rose Effect." He sounded almost shy. "Sherlock and Watson were long ago. We're Sazo and Rose."


       About the Author:

Michelle Diener writes historical fiction, fantasy and science fiction. Having worked in publishing and IT, she’s now very happy crafting new worlds and interesting characters and wondering which part of the world she can travel to next. Michelle was born in London, grew up in South Africa and currently lives in Australia with her husband and two children.

When she’s not writing, or driving her kids from activity to activity, you can find her blogging at Magical Musings, or online at Twitter, at Google+ and Facebook.



Saturday, June 13, 2015

Stacking The Shelves: June 13, 2015

Stacking The Shelves is a weekly meme hosted @ Tynga's Reviews.




Bought:
Outlander Boxset 1-4 by Diana Gabaldon
I got these through an awesome sale on Bol.com. I already read Outlander back in April as ebook but since I loved it (and the tv show!) so much I really wanted to own them in paperbacks. I'm currently reading Dragonfly in Amber and lovoing it so far! 


Bought:
A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness
Shadow of Night by Deborah Harkness
Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult
I bought these three books through another sale on Bol.com. I think it's safe to say I had a weak moment with buying books from that webshop this week. I already read A Discovery of Witches and Leaving Time as ebooks but they're favorites of mine so I had to have them in paperbacks. Especially Leaving Time is close to my heart! 


For Review:
Eternal Light by Inger Iversen
Already read and reviewed here!

For Review:
After the Fall by Inger Iversen
Also already read and reviewed here
. And gosh, aren't these covers so pretty?!


For Review:
Dark Horse by Michelle Diener
This author is one of my top favorites. I haven't read much science-fiction books but I would read anything from her. I'm also reading it right now and it's really good so far. 

For Review:
What You Left Behind by Jessica Verdi
Honestly, it's been so long since I requested this book that I had forgotten about it until I saw I got approved for it. It sounds like a really amazing story!


For Review:
Beat by Vi Keeland
Another one I already read. My review will be up on june 18th for the blog tour. Loved it!

For Review:
Queen of Tomorrow by Sherry D. Ficklin
I can't say I was totally in love with the first book but the ending of it just made me want to read this + it's historical fiction. So I'm really happy I got it for review!


For Review:
Da Vinci's Tiger by Laura Malone Elliott
I'm obsessed with Da Vinci and the Renaissance so yeah couldn't resist this! Fingers crossed that it's as good as I hope it will be.




Leave me links to your hauls so I can stop by, please! :)



♥ Holly's Boys ♥

Highly recommended story to check out!