31.1.18

#Review: THE STORY OF LIZZY AND DARCY by Grace Watson

THE STORY OF LIZZY AND DARCY

Author: Grace Watson
Series: N/A
Source: Purchased from Amazon
Publisher: Published by the Author
Publication Date: June 1, 2017
Rating: 1.5/5 stars

Summary:
When Lizzy Bennet first meets Darcy Williams, there is an instant dislike between them. As much as they try to avoid it their paths keep crossing, and they each start to see a different side to the other. Their tentative friendship is soon tested, but will they realise how they really feel?

The Story of Lizzy and Darcy is a modern day, same-sex adaptation of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.
Purchase:
Wow this was a trainwreck. And that is putting it nicely. I must admit that I am not a huge fan of Pride and Prejudice, but I am a fan of f/f retellings of classic stories so I picked this up. But yikes.

29.1.18

#ARCReview: THE EDGE OF THE ABYSS by Emily Skrutskie

THE EDGE OF THE ABYSS

Author: Emily Skrutskie
Series: The Abyss Surrounds Us #2
Source: eARC via Publisher
Publisher: Flux
Publication Date: April 18, 2017
Rating: DNF @ 26%

Summary:
Three weeks have passed since Cassandra Leung pledged her allegiance to the ruthless pirate-queen Santa Elena and set free Bao, the sea monster Reckoner she’d been forced to train. The days as a pirate trainee are long and grueling, but it’s not the physical pain that Cas dreads most. It’s being forced to work with Swift, the pirate girl who broke her heart. 

But Cas has even bigger problems when she discovers that Bao is not the only monster swimming free. Other Reckoners illegally sold to pirates have escaped their captors and are taking the NeoPacific by storm, attacking ships at random and ruining the ocean ecosystem. As a Reckoner trainer, Cas might be the only one who can stop them. But how can she take up arms against creatures she used to care for and protect?

Will Cas embrace the murky morals that life as a pirate brings or perish in the dark waters of the NeoPacific?
Purchase:
Disclaimer: I received an ARC of this book and chose to review it. This in no way impacts my opinion on the novel.

Yikes. I generally don't write DNF reviews on here but this is one that I think y'all should see. Because I really liked THE ABYSS SURROUNDS US so this should have been a book I also really liked. But it was not. Where THE ABYSS SURROUNDS US had good worldbuilding, monsters, and charm, THE EDGE OF THE ABYSS felt like a whole other world and one that was devoid of joy.

26.1.18

#Review: STYLE by Chelsea M. Cameron

STYLE

Author: Chelsea M. Cameron
Series: The OTP Series #1
Source: Purchased from Kobo
Publisher: Published by the Author
Publication Date: May 31, 2016
Rating: 2/5 stars

Summary:
Kyle Blake likes plans. So far, they’re pretty simple: Finish her senior year of high school, head off to a good college, find a cute boyfriend, graduate, get a good job, get married, the whole heterosexual shebang. Nothing is going to stand in the way of that plan. Not even Stella Lewis. 

Stella Lewis also has a plan: Finish her senior year as cheer captain, go to college, finally let herself flirt with (and maybe even date) a girl for the first time and go from there. 

Fate has other plans for Kyle and Stella when they’re paired up in their AP English class and something between them ignites. It’s confusing and overwhelming and neither of them know what to do about it. One thing they do know is that their connection can’t be ignored. The timing just isn’t right. 

But is there ever a good time for falling in love?
Purchase:
So I went into this one knowing it was going to be a fluffy f/f novel - and it is! - it's just not very good. The writing was very simplistic and I couldn't tell the difference between the two narrators as they sounded identical which led to a lot of confusion. At about 55% I started skimming through to see what the "major issue" was going to be and then read the sex scene and was done with it.

25.1.18

#BlogTour: THE HAZEL WOOD by Melissa Albert // #Review + #Interview

Hello and welcome to my blog tour post for

THE HAZEL WOOD by Melissa Albert!

I have a review of the book today plus Melissa stopped by to answer one of my burning questions, so be sure to read all the way to the bottom! 

THE HAZEL WOOD

Author: Melissa Albert
Series: The Hazel Wood #1
Source: ARC via Raincoast Books
Publisher: Flatiron Books
Publication Date: January 30, 2018
Rating: 4/5 stars

Summary:
Seventeen-year-old Alice and her mother have spent most of Alice’s life on the road, always a step ahead of the uncanny bad luck biting at their heels. But when Alice’s grandmother, the reclusive author of a cult-classic book of pitch-dark fairy tales, dies alone on her estate, the Hazel Wood, Alice learns how bad her luck can really get: her mother is stolen away―by a figure who claims to come from the Hinterland, the cruel supernatural world where her grandmother's stories are set. Alice's only lead is the message her mother left behind: “Stay away from the Hazel Wood.”

Alice has long steered clear of her grandmother’s cultish fans. But now she has no choice but to ally with classmate Ellery Finch, a Hinterland superfan who may have his own reasons for wanting to help her. To retrieve her mother, Alice must venture first to the Hazel Wood, then into the world where her grandmother's tales began―and where she might find out how her own story went so wrong.
Purchase:
Amazon | Chapters | TBD
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book and chose to review it. This in no way impacts my opinion of the book.

This is one of those books that either people are going to love it or not. Thankfully I was one of the ones who loved it! I thought that it was a little slow for pacing but it drew me in right away. I loved the darkness to it and the way it draws you in. If you've seen the movie Jennifer's Body, there is a point where Needy talks about how Nikolai looks like a petrified tree she saw when she was younger saying he was "pale and twisted and evil" and that is EXACTLY how this book feels to me. Also if you haven't seen Jennifer's Body, go watch it.

24.1.18

#ARCReview: THE LAST MAGICIAN by Lisa Maxwell

THE LAST MAGICIAN

Author: Lisa Maxwell
Series: N/A
Source: ARC via Publisher
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publication Date: July 18, 2017
Rating: 4/5 stars

Summary:
Stop the Magician. Steal the book. Save the future.

In modern-day New York, magic is all but extinct. The remaining few who have an affinity for magic—the Mageus—live in the shadows, hiding who they are. Any Mageus who enters Manhattan becomes trapped by the Brink, a dark energy barrier that confines them to the island. Crossing it means losing their power—and often their lives.

Esta is a talented thief, and she’s been raised to steal magical artifacts from the sinister Order that created the Brink. With her innate ability to manipulate time, Esta can pilfer from the past, collecting these artifacts before the Order even realizes she’s there. And all of Esta’s training has been for one final job: traveling back to 1902 to steal an ancient book containing the secrets of the Order—and the Brink—before the Magician can destroy it and doom the Mageus to a hopeless future.

But Old New York is a dangerous world ruled by ruthless gangs and secret societies, a world where the very air crackles with magic. Nothing is as it seems, including the Magician himself. And for Esta to save her future, she may have to betray everyone in the past.
Purchase:
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book and chose to review it. This in no way impacts my opinion.

I had every intention of reading this before the release date but I could sidetracked by life. But I am glad I waited to read it because I don't think I was ready to read this tome of a book at that point because I would have rushed to get through it because of my other time commitments whereas now I had the time to relax and enjoy it. However, I do think it was a tad too long and could have been shortened just a bit to make it the perfect fantasy novel. 

22.1.18

#ARCReview: THE VALIANT by Lesley Livingston

THE VALIANT

Author: Lesley Livingston
Series: The Valiant #1
Source: ARC via Publisher
Publisher: HarperCollins Canada
Publication Date: February 14, 2017
Rating: 2/5 stars

Summary:
Princess. Captive. Gladiator.

Fallon is the daughter of a proud Celtic king, the sister of the legendary warrior Sorcha, and the sworn enemy of Julius Caesar.

When Fallon was a child, Caesar’s armies invaded her homeland, and her beloved sister was killed in battle.

Now, on the eve of her seventeenth birthday, Fallon is eager to follow in her sister’s footsteps and earn her place in the fearsome Cantii war band. She never gets the chance.

Fallon is captured and sold to an elite training school for female gladiators—owned by none other than Julius Caesar. In a cruel twist of fate, the man who destroyed Fallon’s family might be her only hope of survival.

Now Fallon must overcome vicious rivalries and deadly fights—in and out of the arena. And perhaps the most dangerous threat of all: her forbidden yet irresistible feelings for Cai, a young Roman soldier.
Purchase:
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book and chose to review it. This in no way impacts my opinion.

So this should have been everything I needed in a book and yet I closed it feeling really disappointed. Not only did it not have the level of violence that I needed for it to really be a book about gladiators, but it also ended so abruptly that I was looking at the final pages of my ARC with confusion. I was anticipating more since it is the beginning of a new series but it just left me feeling as though I should have never picked it back up after I put it down.

19.1.18

#Review: EVERYTHING LEADS TO YOU by Nina LaCour

EVERYTHING LEADS TO YOU

Author: Nina LaCour
Series: N/A
Source: Purchased from Chapters
Publisher: Dutton Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: May 15, 2014
Rating: 3/5 stars

Summary:
A love letter to the craft and romance of film and fate in front of—and behind—the camera from the award-winning author of Hold Still.

A wunderkind young set designer, Emi has already started to find her way in the competitive Hollywood film world.

Emi is a film buff and a true romantic, but her real-life relationships are a mess. She has desperately gone back to the same girl too many times to mention. But then a mysterious letter from a silver screen legend leads Emi to Ava. Ava is unlike anyone Emi has ever met. She has a tumultuous, not-so-glamorous past, and lives an unconventional life. She’s enigmatic…. She’s beautiful. And she is about to expand Emi’s understanding of family, acceptance, and true romance.
Purchase:
So it's not that this was a bad book - and it wasn't necessarily an excellent book - it just fell somewhere in the middle. It felt as though it was 100 pages too long and the "mystery" is solved too soon for my liking. All that being said, I did enjoy the romance and I definitely enjoy LaCour's writing style. 

17.1.18

#Review: THE VIOLET HILL SERIES by Chelsea M. Cameron

SECOND KISS

Author: Chelsea M. Cameron
Series: Violet Hill #1
Source: Purchased from Amazon
Publisher: Published by the Author
Publication Date: December 13, 2016
Rating: 3.5/5 stars

Summary:
Daisy Grace Webber's life hasn't exactly turned out how she thought. She didn't think she'd drop out of college and come back to the small town she grew up in. To be fair, she didn't think her love of baking would turn into a job at the Violet Hill Cafe either, but it did.

Something else she didn't expect was for Molly Madison to walk back into her life, eight years after she moved away. They'd been best friends forever, or so she'd thought. But Molly is back in town and she's looking... really good, actually. And that reminds Daisy of that one time at a sleepover when they'd kissed during a game of Spin the Bottle. That one kiss has been on her mind since then, but it's irrelevant. Molly isn't into girls.

But as Daisy and Molly spend more time together, feelings start to grow, and Daisy is wondering just how "straight" Molly really is...
Purchase:
This was a good start to this series (which by the title of this post, you can see I have finished). I feel as though we were dropped into a world that wasn't quite explained enough because it was lacking some serious worldbuilding and I would have appreciated a bit more. I think sometimes contemporary authors forget how important it is to really set the scene for us. However, I think a lot of the issues I had with this book (and the rest of the series) boils down to it being a novella and not a full length novel. 

15.1.18

#BlogTour: LOVE BETWEEN ENEMIES by Molly E. Lee // #Review + #Giveaway

Hello and welcome to my blog tour post for

LOVE BETWEEN ENEMIES by Molly E. Lee!

I have a review of the book for you today (which I LOVED!) plus you can enter to win a $25 gift card from Amazon! All of that can be found below, but first let's learn more about the book...


LOVE BETWEEN ENEMIES

Author: Molly E. Lee
Series: Grad Night #2
Source: eARC via Publisher
Publisher: Entangled: Crush
Publication Date: January 8, 2018
Rating: 4/5 stars

Summary:
Zoey Handler is ready to put an end to her decade-long rivalry with Gordon Meyers. They’ve traded top spot between valedictorian and salutatorian for years, but all that’s over now. Right? But after a crazy graduation speech prank gets out of hand, suddenly their rivalry turns into all-out war. Time to make peace with a little friendly payback.

Step one? Make him believe they’re now friends.

Step two? Show him the time of his life at an epic graduation party.

Step three? Don’t fall for his tricks.

Step four? Absolutely, positively, do not kiss him again.

So what if he’s cute? (Okay, hot.) So what if he’s charming? (Heaven help her, tempting.) So what if he apologizes? (That has to be fake.) She knows the real Gordon. And no matter how much her heart begs her to stop, there’s no turning back.

Disclaimer: This Entangled Teen Crush book contains one epic party, complete with every high-schoolers-gone-bad shenanigan, and two rivals who discover maybe they could be something much more…if only they’d stop fighting long enough to notice it.
Purchase:
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book and chose to review it. This in no way impacts my opinion.

I absolutely adored this book. I was rooting for Gordon and Zoey from the beginning. I disliked the miscommunication but I could get around it because of the way the plot came together at the end.

12.1.18

#Review: GHOST GIRL IN THE CORNER by Daniel José Older

GHOST GIRL IN THE CORNER

Author: Daniel José Older
Series: Shadowshaper #1.5
Source: Purchased from Amazon
Publisher: Arthur A. Levine Books
Publication Date: November 29, 2016
Rating: 4/5 stars

Summary:
H E L P

Trying to shake off the strange malaise that separates her from even her girlfriend Izzy, Tee decides to take over the Bed-Stuy Searchlight for the summer. But then she finds an alluring violet dress in the newspaper office, and a cute ghost girl no one else can see. Who is she? What does she want? And why is she revealing herself to Tee? 

H E R

Izzy can tell Tee's drifting away from her -- she misses Izzy's shows and skips shadowshaper practice to spend time alone at the newspaper -- and she won't stand for it. Yet when a girl goes missing in Bed-Stuy, Izzy needs Tee to get the word out and help investigate. Can they break through their distance and reconnect before someone else dies? 

Set between the New York Times-bestselling Shadowshaper and its upcoming sequel Shadowhouse Fall, this beautiful novella of mystery, love and loss will draw you deep into Daniel José Older's magical Brooklyn.
Purchase:
So I probably should have read the first book in this series prior to reading this novella because I felt like I was thrown into something I should have had more knowledge of and didn't. I think I was also expecting more ghosts or paranormal activity but didn't really get that either.

10.1.18

#Review: THE SEAFARER'S KISS by Julia Ember

THE SEAFARER'S KISS

Author: Julia Ember
Series: N/A
Source: Purchased from Amazon
Publisher: Duet Books
Publication Date: May 4, 2017
Rating: 4.5/5 stars

Summary:
Having long-wondered what lives beyond the ice shelf, nineteen-year-old mermaid Ersel learns of the life she wants when she rescues and befriends Ragna, a shield-maiden stranded on the mermen’s glacier. But when Ersel’s childhood friend and suitor catches them together, he gives Ersel a choice: say goodbye to Ragna or face justice at the hands of the glacier’s brutal king.

Determined to forge a different fate, Ersel seeks help from Loki. But such deals are never as one expects, and the outcome sees her exiled from the only home and protection she’s known. To save herself from perishing in the barren, underwater wasteland and be reunited with the human she’s come to love, Ersel must try to outsmart the God of Lies.
Purchase:
Disclaimer: I received an ARC of this book but I am reviewing the finished copy of the book. This does not impact my opinion in any way.

See a Guest Post from Julia about Plus Sized Heroines, my review of UNICORN TRACKS, and an interview with Julia prior to #Sapphicathon!

This was super cute and probably the best way for me to start getting back into reading this year and kick off #Sapphicathon! I love Julia's writing style and her characters because they are relateable even when they are mythical creatures. I would have liked this to be longer - especially the second half - but I thought it was a good book and one I would recommend if you are looking for a f/f retelling of The Little Mermaid!

8.1.18

#BlogTour: HINDER by Kristin Ping // #Spotlight + #Giveaway

Hello and welcome to my blog tour post for

HINDER by Kristin Ping!

Learn more about the book plus sign up for Kristin's newsletter for a chance to win a Mac!

HINDER

Author: Kristin Ping
Series: Guardians of Monsters #1
Publisher: Fire Quill Publishing
Publication Date: May 15, 2018

Summary:
Ethan Sutcliff seems like a normal seventeen-year-old—at least that’s what he’s trying to portray. In a secret society run by the Supernaturals, Ethan is what witches call a Bender. Benders are Witches’ Guardians, who are able to control a witches’ ability, bend it, or move it away from harming humans. In Ethan’s case, he is able to bend the Earth element. But at the age of fifteen, he lost all connection to it, and the reasons behind it could only mean one of two things: His Wielder is either dead, or hiding out somewhere.

Alex Burgendorf has been living in her aunt’s locket for the past sixteen years with her mother—a Fire Wielder, and her father—a Water Wielder. For sixteen years, her parents vowed to protect her, and they have, as she is the last Earth wielding witch. However, time is running out. Alex must find her Bender, or the fate of the Supernaturals might be at stake.
Purchase: