A young woman. A white wolf. A curse. Echo, a woman facially scarred by a wolf when she was younger, waits for her father to return from the city. Left with her stepmother who despises her, Echo frets as time drags on and still her father has not returned. So, she does what any daughter would do and sets out on her own to find him and bring him back. But what she finds was nothing that she expected. Forced to make a deal with a monster in order to save her father’s life, Echo finds herself in a world of magic and mystery and a fight to save her captor.
Echo North is an intricate retelling of Beauty and the Beast. Filled with beautiful prose and a wondrous world of magic, Joanna Ruth Meyer had me hooked from the beginning. Echo is a character easy to love and discovering her familial relationships felt almost like Cinderella. While I found the writing to be exquisite, I did find my interest slipping a bit when explanations of the world grew long. But that was easily overlooked.
If you want a book that keeps you on your toes but will also warm your heart, Echo North is the book for you. Plot twist upon plot twist kept me guessing what would happen next. The comfort of a familiar story was ever present. But not so much that I felt bored. And of course, what would a fairytale be without romance? This book had everything!
Do you have those books that just sit around and never get read? Maybe they’re gathering dust on a shelf or taking up room in a pile on the floor? Daughter of Smoke and Bone was one of those books.
Karou is seventeen years old, living in Prague, and fills her sketchbooks with drawings of monsters. Monsters that just happen to be her family. When a heart-stoppingly beautiful stranger shows up, so do black handprints at all the portals Karou would use to visit her monster family. And when those portals are destroyed, Karou is forced to confront the mysterious man. But when she does, a whole other life opens up for her and she must decide what steps to take next to save her family.
I’ll be honest. I wasn’t really expecting much from this book. I’d seen it a few times on TikTok but kind of just ignored it for the most part. It’d been sitting in my floor TBR pile for months and I never had the urge to pick it up. I’m still not sure I’m glad I picked it up. Laini Taylor’s writing is immaculate, filled with beautiful prose and characters I want to spend time with. But the storyline, so far as this one novel, seemed like a slow burn for a good portion of the book. It wasn’t until the last five chapters that things started to really pick up. And of course it ends on a cliffhanger!
Daughter of Smoke and Bone definitely piqued my interest and I’m so curious to see the rest of Karou’s adventure in the next book. I think after using this novel to world and character build, the next one should move a little quicker.
In 1889, Paris sits on the brink of industrial breakthrough, but in the process has stirred up ancient secrets that now threaten the very existence of civilization. But no one has more to lose than Severin, a treasure hunter and wealthy hotelier, who now must help the very organization he loathes in order to save humanity. The Gilded Wolves brings together a group of miscreants with their own dark pasts in an attempt to keep the world in one piece.
I’m not gonna lie. It took me quite a while to get through this book. Part of that could be because life just got really busy, things got turned upside down (hi, pandemic), or that I just lost interest. But about halfway through The Gilded Wolves I had to put it down. It just wasn’t holding my interest and I felt like I couldn’t follow what was going on. Thankfully, I picked it back up and I’m so glad I did! This book is phenomenal and totally didn’t end the way I expected.
Roshani Chokshi is a magician with words! Bringing the stories of multiple individuals together in one novel and intricately weaving them together is not an easy task. But she did it flawlessly. Severin, Laila, Tristan, Enrique, and Zofia are characters that I found wanting to know more about while simultaneously feeling like they were my own friends. I loved every moment of their adventure and wanted more. By the grace of the writing gods, Chokshi is working on releasing a sequel this September.
If you’re looking for a book with a healthy mix of history, magic, romance, and adventure, then this is definitely a book worth picking up!
Rhen’s curse is broken. Harper and her brother are stuck in Emberfall. And Grey is no where to be found. But Rhen faces trouble as the rumors of another heir circulate throughout his kingdom. Not only that, but the unknown prince also seems to be a magesmith. After Lilith’s hold on Rhen, he fears anything with magic…even his own brother. But fate will not be ignored and Emberfall is the stage for everything to fall into place.
So it’s rare for me to enjoy the second book in a series more than the first but…holy cow! Brigid Kemmerer does not disappoint!! A Heart So Fierce and Broken is the perfect sequel to A Curse So Dark and Lonely. I started reading it, expecting (hoping?) for it to follow more of Rhen and Harper’s adventures as they settle into this new life. But I was surprised to find that instead, we follow Grey and his path to help save his country.
Once again, I couldn’t put this one down. Kemmerer has a talent for creating stories that draw you in, characters you want to learn more about, and man does she know how to leave it on a cliffhanger??? I don’t know how long I have to wait for the next book in The Cursebreaker Series but I’m not happy about it. I’m hooked you guys and I can’t wait to see what happens next in Emberfall!
Rhen is a monster. No, literally, a monster. Cursed by a less than pleasant enchantress, Rhen is cursed to become a monster again and again until he can find a woman to love him. Left with only his loyal commander, he ventures forth to worlds other than his own to find some girl unwitting enough to get tangled up with the likes of him.
Harper is in her own mess. Her mother is slowly dying of cancer. Her father has borrowed money from the worst possible person, and in return, her brother is now doing dirty work in order to pay back the loan. But one night, as she stands lookout for her brother, she is taken to another place and finds herself being courted by an arrogant prince.
Brigid Kemmer is a magician. That’s all there is to say. She has a way of telling a story that sucks you in. Really, I couldn’t put this book down. Jumping between the viewpoint of the two main characters, A Curse So Dark and Lonely is one of the few epic fantasy romances that is sure to stand out. With characters that you can’t help but fall in love with (no pun intended) and a storyline that has no end of thickening plots and twists, this is one for the ages. And I can’t wait to get my hands on the sequel!
Life for Katharine, Arsinoe, and Mirabella is anything but normal. They are gifted girls, each with a special power. Katharine has the gift of poison, able to withstand ingesting any poison she comes in contact with as well as mixing intricate potions to dispatch her enemies. Arsinoe is a naturalist, a gift that allows her to make plants bloom and call animals to her. Mirabella is an elemental with the ability to control the weather as well as the elements. But only one of them can take the throne.
In a novel filled with rituals and long-standing traditions, Kendare Blake weaves a dark tale of magic, romance, and evil. The three sisters are unique characters on their own. However, I felt a bit inundated with the other characters (i.e., the priestesses, the council, etc.). It became intricate and at times hard to follow. There were also places where I questioned why the characters would make that decision. Nothing leading up to it seemed to make sense and nothing after made sense either. As if it was spur of the moment and simply to move the story along.
Blake of course left Three Dark Crowns with a cliffhanger, and one I definitely wasn’t expecting. With a significant twist in the story (saved for the last page), Blake left me wanting more and curious to see how the triplets would continue in a world that seems set against them killing one another. All in all, a decent read but probably one I wouldn’t pick up again. However, that could all change with the sequel to this one, One Dark Throne.
Lara Jean and Peter were never supposed to be together. But once they started the faux relationship, the feelings turned real. But when another boy from her past shows up, Lara Jean remembers all the reasons she had fallen for him too. Is it possible to be in love with two people at once?
Jenny Han does it again with this sequel to To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before. PS I Still Love You is a timeless romance novel with classic themes of a conflicted heart. As usual, it’s hard not to fall in love with the main character Lara Jean as she tries to navigate the choppy waters of teenagedom and the perils of teen romance. And it’s hard!
With light humor and heavy drama, PS I Still Love You is the perfect continuation of Lara Jean’s love story. While I love Han’s writing, and I did enjoy this book, I felt like it was a bit bland compared to To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before. I’m holding out hope that the third installment will pick back up. But it may be a while before I delve into this series again.
Imagine being able to jump into your favorite novel, being able to interact with the characters you love, and basically live the story! For Amy Lennox, that’s reality…or at least it becomes her reality.
For as long as Amy can remember, it’s always been her and Alexis, her mom. Life hasn’t always been easy but it sure has been an adventure for the two of them. Until one summer. School had been hard on Amy. The friends she thought she had weren’t actually her friends and her mom was dealing with a hard breakup. So the two of them decide to spend a few weeks at Alexis’s childhood home, a little island called Stormsay.
While there, Amy’s grandmother, Lady Mairead insists that Amy read while she resides at Lennox House. Which isn’t much of a problem for Amy since she loves to read anyway. But Amy soon learns that her family holds a special power as book jumpers, able to interact with a story and protect the plots to keep the literary world in check. It seems like a wonderful ability, until someone starts stealing ideas from the classics. Dorothy’s cyclone disappears, the white rabbit can no longer lead Alice to Wonderland, and it’s suddenly snowing in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. But who is destroying the stories and why?
I was super excited to read this one. But it was a little slow going in the beginning. It wasn’t until I was about seven chapters in that the story started to pick up. While an easy read and an intriguing story, I felt that bits of it were thrown together haphazardly. However, part of that could just be the translation. Nevertheless, Mechthild Glaser has created a unique tale for all bookworms. I mean, who hasn’t dreamed about being able to talk with their favorite heroines or watch the classic stories being lived right in front of them?
There’s a lot going on in the book and it can get a bit confusing. I felt like there were too many underlying stories to the main one that at times it distracted from the awesomeness of the main storyline. Still, The Book Jumper was a good read with a surprise ending and I can’t wait to read more from this author!
When Alice fell through the rabbit hole, she discovered a world filled with mystery and quite a bit of nonsense. She battled jabberwockies, talked with animals, and met a queen. But what happened when she came back?
Ever Alice picks up where Lewis Carroll left off. Alice has talked about Wonderland non-stop since her return and her parents are concerned. They’ve taken her to doctor after doctor until they have no choice but to commit her to an asylum. But Alice knows she’s not crazy. Every bit of Wonderland was as real as the padded walls around her. And when the White Rabbit shows up once again to lead her to Wonderland, she is convinced even more that what she’s seen is real. But the Rabbit hasn’t come back to invite her to tea or to walk through the gardens. This time, he’s back with a mission, one only Alice can do. He wants her to kill the Queen of Hearts.
H.J. Ramsay doesn’t skip a beat in this beautiful, nonsensical retelling of a classic. While keeping the integrity of Carroll’s characters intact, she makes it her own as well. It’s easy to get lost in the wonders of Wonderland and I’m reminded of my childhood and discovering Wonderland with Alice for the first time. Ramsay delivers more than just a new chapter in Alice’s story. She reminds us that sometimes reality isn’t all it seems and it’s ok to go back to Wonderland.
**I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley for an honest review.**
We’ve all heard A Christmas Carol. It’s a classic. There are a hundred different remakes of the story. But what happens when you get to live it? What happens when you’re the Scrooge?
Holly lives a charmed life. Her dad is a well-known director in California. Her stepmom is a designer to the stars. Holly wants for nothing. Until Christmas Eve night when she is visited by three spirits: the Ghost of Christmas Past, the Ghost of Christmas Present, and the Ghost of Christmases Yet to Come. But Holly doesn’t believe. All of it’s fake, right? Which is why Christmas morning, she finds herself hit by a car and her afterlife has begun…as Ghost of Christmas Past at Project Scrooge. She takes her sentence like a champ and six years later, she’s actually good at her job. That is, until this year’s Scrooge is announced and Holly finds herself breaking the rules just to see the Scrooge outside of work.
In a brilliant re-telling of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, Cynthia Hand perfectly portrays the classic characters in a new and unique light. When I first picked this up, I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect. But I was pleasantly surprised by how easy it was to fall into the story and get caught up in the lives of the characters. I enjoyed the fact that I could never tell quite how the story would end. Would Holly succeed in saving this Scrooge? Would her choices screw it all up and Project Scrooge would fail? Hand dazzles with her story-telling abilities and her imaginative plot. I want to read this book again and again!
This book was simply amazing. One that could be read anytime of year and still have the same impact: what are we doing with what little time we’ve been given?