Cover Reveal – Violet Souls by Abbey MacMunn

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Release date: 5th September 2018

Genre: Fantasy Romance

Publisher: Tirgearr Publishing

ARCs available: epub, mobi, PDF

Word count: 78,000

Number of pages: 232 (approx.)

 

Blurb:

 

While searching for clues to her past, shy single mum, Bree Mills discovers a subculture of aliens with supernatural abilities living on Earth.

And she’s one of them.

Finding herself hurled into a world of possibilities, it’s made more alluring by Quinn Taylor, the violet-eyed Evoxian from her childhood dreams.

324-year-old Quinn knows his destiny is entwined with Bree’s, but before he can confess his love, he must wait for her to sense the Akui, a mysterious force tied with ancient Evoxian law.

At a Cotswolds country manor, passions awaken and ignite a love more magical than the once-Utopian planet, Evox. Then Fate delivers a cruel and heart-breaking blow when Bree is kidnapped by a malicious alien who wants her and her power.

Will Quinn still love her when she’s faced with protecting her half-human daughter… whatever the cost?

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Rosemarked by Livia Blackburne

Disclaimer: I bought this book on my own. Yay me! No disclaimer needed =).

Rating: 3.5/5

Genre: YA Fantasy

Recommended Age: 15+ (violence, disease, concentration like conditions, overthrowing the kingdom)

Pages: 390

Author Website

Amazon Link

Synopsis: A healer who cannot be healed . . .

When Zivah falls prey to the deadly rose plague, she knows it’s only a matter of time before she fully succumbs. Now she’s destined to live her last days in isolation, cut off from her people and unable to practice her art—until a threat to her village creates a need that only she can fill.

A soldier shattered by war . . .

Broken by torture at the hands of the Amparan Empire, Dineas thirsts for revenge against his captors. Now escaped and reunited with his tribe, he’ll do anything to free them from Amparan rule—even if it means undertaking a plan that risks not only his life but his very self.

Thrust together on a high-stakes mission to spy on the capital, the two couldn’t be more different: Zivah, deeply committed to her vow of healing, and Dineas, yearning for vengeance. But as they grow closer, they must find common ground to protect those they love. And amidst the constant fear of discovery, the two grapple with a mutual attraction that could break both of their carefully guarded hearts.

This smart, sweeping fantasy with a political edge and a slow-burning romance will capture fans of The Lumatere Chronicles and An Ember in the Ashes.

I love books with new concepts and this one was definitely one of those. Not a lot of books take place from the perspective of a doctor, but this one did and it was fabulous! I loved Zivah and I can’t wait to read the next book in the series. The book was very good at character development and plot development. The plot was always intriguing and the writing was really good. You can tell the author is very intelligent and that she knows how the brain works.

However, I do feel that the book had some pacing issues and it failed to hold my interest as it kept repeating itself in my opinion. The book also had a problem with time. It moved inconsistently and sometimes scenes would take place over a matter of weeks or they would take place over a matter of hours.

Verdict: Overall, the book is really good, but it just failed to catch my attention.

Book Tour – In The Dark by Sasha Lynn

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Synopsis:

The summer Declan turned eighteen, her world exploded. She was forbidden to go to college by her strict parents and was forced to stay home and help them run the farm. Declan gave up her dreams of higher education and a career of her own, obeying her parents and promising to become a wife and mother, and nothing else. She expected her parents would become more controlling than ever once she turned eighteen. She expected her father to hire more work hands for the acres of land and other work that needed to be done. And she expected to be at her parent’s beck and call. What she didn’t expect was to meet the most beautifully tortured soul in a work hand that summer. And she most certainly did not expect to fall in love with him.

Click here to order your copy today!

Author Bio:

Sasha Lynn is a wine-loving, dog-rescuing writer from Alabama. She has her BA in Creative Writing. You can find her on her off days daydreaming of opening her own animal shelter – and writing about it.

Seer by Ashley Maker

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the author and my friend Mary Ellen. Thanks! All opinions are my own!

 

Rating: 3.5/5

 

Genre: YA Paranormal Romance/Dystopian/Science-Fiction

 

Recommended Age: 15+ (romance scenes and violence)

 

Pages: 344

 

Author Website

 

Amazon Link

 

Synopsis: When Clare Palmer accepts a scholarship to attend Evergreen, she thinks she’s escaping her insane, estranged father, while also getting the chance to go to the school her late mother graduated from. Instead, she finds herself trapped in a scientifically-enhanced, combat-obsessed society called the Corasha who view her as a dangerous outsider.

Clare views herself as an outsider, too. Unwilling to accept the outrageous claims of those around her, she’s ready to get out of Evergreen at the first opportunity, until unwanted and unstable visible abilities begin to surface, confirming she’s a Seer, a biological anomaly that’s both prized and guarded by the Corasha. The only person who knows about her phasing is Kade, the attractive yet infuriating mentor she’s now indebted to, but trusting him comes with a price her heart might not be willing to pay.

Surrounded by dangerous secrets and hidden agendas, Clare must figure out who she can trust—and fast, because there’s a war coming, and the last thing she wants is to become a weapon in the wrong hands.

 

Oh wow! I don’t think I’ve read a paranormal romance in quite a long time (and I’m not sure if this qualifies as a paranormal romance or if it’s more scifi-y but I’m gonna go with it)… probably since Twilight? Anyways, I went into this kinda blind and I felt for my first trip back into the genre I thought it was really well done. I’m really into conspiracy theories and plots within plots so this one definitely grabbed my attention. I also really enjoyed the world building aspect and the character development.

 

 

However, I did feel that the book had uneven pacing. It was fast in some parts and then tremendously slow in others. The main character was a tad annoying for me and she really didn’t seem to want to figure out what was happening on her own. While this book was very entertaining for me generally, I felt that Clare’s personality really put me off this novel.

 

Verdict: Unique and amazing story within a story that deserves to be read.

Tiny Infinities by J.H. Diehl

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book through KidLitExchange. Thanks! All opinions are my own.

 

Rating: 4/5

 

Genre: MG Contemporary

 

Recommended Age: 14+ (divorce, grief, drugs, drug usage, abuse, mental illness, and slight obscure mentions of sex)

 

Pages: 352

 

Author Website

 

Amazon Link

 

Synopsis: When Alice’s dad moves out, leaving her with her troubled mother, she does the only thing that feels right: she retreats to her family’s old Renaissance tent in the backyard, determined to live there until her dad comes home. In an attempt to keep at least one part of her summer from changing, Alice focuses on her quest to swim freestyle fast enough to get on her swim team’s record board. But summers contain multitudes, and soon Alice meets an odd new friend, Harriet, whose obsession with the school’s science fair is equal only to her conviction that Alice’s best stroke is backstroke, not freestyle. Most unexpected of all is an unusual babysitting charge, Piper, who is mute—until Alice hears her speak. A funny and honest middle-grade novel, this sharply observed depiction of family, friendship, and Alice’s determination to prove herself—as a babysitter, as a friend, as a daughter, as a person—rings loud and true.

 

This is another book that will probably be one of my favorites of 2018, but it’s for a different reason. It’s a cute middle grade contemporary that talks about divorce and could be a huge help for kids in a similar situation. It’s funny, it’s charming, the characters are well developed, and the book is very well structured and developed.

 

However, I feel like there’s more to the story than what the young readers read. From my grown-up perspective it felt like there was a whole hidden world going on that the book hints about. The book deals with a lot of issues throughout the book but never resolves them in the end. I don’t normally do this, but because of my concern about the book and about younger readers reading the book I will talk about spoilers:

 

SPOILERS FROM HERE DOWN

 

The mother has an obvious dependence on her medication and it hints at it being oxy, which a lot of people get dependent on. The mother seems to exaggerate her injuries so she can continue using the medication. The mother leaves the child entirely on her own and stops caring for the house in general. The neighbor man is a very loud and boisterous character and while the young girl’s selective mutism isn’t ever fully explained the father seems to be the cause of it. Whenever he yells or lashes out at the family they seem to cower. In a couple of points during the book when the neighbor man has had a particularly volatile episode the family members aren’t seen in the book for a scene or two. The neighbor man makes a comment about one such disappearance as the wife and the children left without the neighbor man to her family in North Carolina. The oldest child of the neighbor man openly talks about an obscure mention to him being the product of a one night stand between his parents. The father of the main character seems to be the most competent adult, but he fails to intervene to help the main character. In my opinion if this was a real story CPS should have been called a long time ago on the family and it concerns me that at the end of the book the neighbor man apologized once but still had an eerie vibe to him, the mother was still dependent on drugs, and the family was fractured and left to deal with a dependent mother while the father lives elsewhere. Sure, he says he will come everyday to mow and make the children’s lunches, but he’s left three of his kids with an addict who has shown herself to be incapable of caring for her own children. This book really concerns me and really intrigues me and I’m not sure if this is a healthy book for a child to read or if it’s so obscure in these issues that it’s okay.

 

Verdict: I have feelings about this book.

Book Tour – Saving Ivy by Emily Reilly

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Synopsis:
 
Ivy Hazeldine is a 15-year-old girl who lived in a small town named, Stowe. Her family wasn’t perfect, but she managed to be happy. Unfortunately one day after school, her life took a tragic turn. She found out her mother had been brutally murdered. And unsurprisingly, things only got more complicated when she found out who the murderer was.
Ivy was sent to live with her Aunt Wiley. They both hoped time would heal Ivy’s pain, but they were wrong. The pain was still withering through her bones and her life only got more problematic. The people in her town harassed her for the gory details of her family’s past, made up horrifying stories about her and broke her until she couldn’t take anymore.
She was on a desperate mission to get out of her town and away from the spotlight. But truthfully, it was her distasteful thoughts that pushed her over board. They took over her body and forced her to act on things she never dreamt of doing. And, while Ivy wanted out, Aunt Wiley did everything to make her stay. Were Aunt Wiley’s efforts to help Ivy see the silver lining in her tragic life enough?
WARNING: This book contains material relating to sexual assault, suicide and violence which may be triggering to some.

Link to Buy: 
 
 
 
Review Blurbs:
 
‘Emily A. Reilly is a talented writer, Saving Ivy is one of those books that you just can not put down, you have to find out what is going to happen next! Then, the ending is not what you are expecting, I love this book and can not wait for Emily A. Reilly to write more!!!’ -Jones
 
‘Every page turned lead you into a direction you didn’t expect! I felt every characters emotion. Loved It. But can we discuss this ending?’- Jessica
 
‘Fantastic read. Starts thrilling, ends thrilling with many twists and turns throughout. Definitely worth reading to find out what they are!’- Loco_Mango
 
‘Loved this book! It was one of those books I couldn’t put down because I always wanted to know what happened next. It’s easily one of the better books I’ve read in awhile.’ -Samantha M. 
 
‘I haven’t read many books where the narrative came from both the protagonists and the antagonist which made it interesting to read. Saving Ivy is simply written without much scene description but it has masses of dialogue, which I personally like. Rather than try to shock or have huge plot twists, Reilly deals with the loss of a loved one and the emotion turmoil that goes with it. It feels like it was written by a young author, even when the narrative is coming from an older character. I applaud this young indie and hope that she takes another look at this story when she has more experience to put some deeper perspective.’ Claire H.
emily reilly
Author Bio:
My name is Emily Reilly, author of Saving Ivy. I am an emerging artist out of Massachusetts. Over the past few years, I have found a great deal of satisfaction by creating intense and suspenseful stories. I enjoy cultivating work that will inspire and resonate with people across the globe. When I’m not writing, I am spending time with my long time boyfriend and our dog Rusty. We enjoy our free time taking Rusty to play fetch, going on walks by the ocean and going on hikes, especially after our weekly splurge at our favorite restaurant! If you would like to follow my journey alongside with me, follow @inspiredbybookss on instagram! 

Summer Book Promo Tour – Most Underrated/Most Overhyped books.

Hey guys! I’m here again with the wonderful Krystianna from Downright Dystopian and we’re going to talk about our most underrated and most overhyped books. Because I can talk on and on about probably 10,000 underrated and 1 million overhyped books I kept my list to those from 2018. It’s not like I try to be a Debbie Downer, but I always see “most hyped books 2018” and no one ever talks about the overhyped or underrated books… probably for good reason but here on my page I’m without reason…. ANYWAYSSSSS here’s my list of underrated books from 2018:

rule

Amazing lesbian representation in YA Fantasy, amazing feminism, and truly fantastic storyline. I really thought this was going to be a bad copy of Three Dark Crowns, but I was gladly wrong!
reign of the fallen
Another YA Fantasy with LGBT representation and flawed imperfect characters? Yes please! I have had this on my TBR for the longest time and I can’t wait to read it soon! Necromancers are what introduced me to fantasy and it’s been too long without a good necromancer tale.
reign the earth
This book discusses miscarriage and features a character who goes from annoyingly weak to amazingly powerful. The character grows so much in the book and it’s really fantastic, even though it relies on tropes. Also, there’s miscarriage in this book which isn’t talked about enough and I cried. Yes, the stone princess cried.
the story peddler
Beautiful story with a character who doesn’t come out knowing how to throw knives with perfect precision. It’s also a fantastic action packed YA Christian fantasy book. These types of books are still relatively new and from what I’ve seen and read so far they’re doing amazing things for their small genre.
nice try jane sinner
A contemporary Daria would read and obsess over. Sarcastic and dark, humerous and sad all at the same time. Although I’m not sure why this gets branded as an LGBT book since only the side character is and she’s not in this book hardly at all. It’s sad when the publishing company finds any reason to claim a book as LGBT or whatever for including minor characters that aren’t present throughout the whole book.
And now here’s my list of underrated books from 2018:
acofas
Did we need an in-between book in which Rhys talks about all the sex he has with Feyre? Did we need a book with 99.9999998% fluff and nothing moving the plot forward? No. We didn’t. It’s a money grab from honest fans who love the series.
ink iron and glass
THIS IS NOT A STEAMPUNK BOOK PEOPLE! The only thing that’s literally steampunked is a fire extinguisher. This book is such a joke on the genre and on YA Fantasy in general.
before i let go
This book was a literal circle. The same conversations happened over and over and over and over and over again. There’s also no message of hope and no healthy acceptance of the character’s depression. The book shows the ugly side of depression and that’s it. It’s a gross display on what mental illness actually is.
zenith
This book is added to the list of books that only got published because  the writer was famous. This book was so awful the editor gave up on it. There were so many issues with this book that I wrote 3 pages on how bad this book was… none of which Amazon will let me write on their website. #rude
smoke in the sun
Guys seriously the first book was awful. It was an awful book that disgraced Mulan’s name. The book wasn’t a real Mulan retelling and the main character in this book was a joke. All I can expect from this novel is more of the same crap. And while I’m all for representation on book covers and the newer covers are super pretty, I honestly hate it when covers are changed mid-series.
And here’s Krystianna’s list of underrated books, no restrictions on year or anything like that because she’s not cynical like me:
172 hours
This book is so creepy and filled with twists that keep the story thrilling and enticing. I also loved all the characters.
letters to zell
This book is literally about the Disney princesses going through real life (for once) and it’s told through a series of letters, usually to Rapunzel. I loved the characters and the writing style, which has kept this book with me for all these years.
armada
I feel like Ready Player One always gets all the attention, but Cline’s sophomore novel was just as enjoyable. It was filled with video games and aliens and I loved it to bits.
because you'll never meet me
This is another book that’s told through letters, but the premise in this one is what really kept my interest. Again, it’s just the writing style and the characters that really made me love this contemporary. I’ve recommended it to countless friends.
how to hang a witch
I think it was the setting that really stuck with me for this one. It takes place in Salem, MA, which is right outside of where I go to college, so I’ve been there many times before. It was all about witches and history and mystery and I ate it up.
And her overhyped list:
a darker shade of magic
This book was so character driven. Don’t get me wrong, I loved the characters, but I need an interesting plot too. Plus, I just didn’t like the random romance that was brewing.
mortal instruments
I’ve tried to get into this numerous times… I just can’t. I find it boring. However, I have loved the TV show. I may retry it eventually.
13 reasons why
I read this book back in high school, way before the show was even a thought. I hated it. I didn’t like the way that Hannah was created as a character who seemed to be bratty and was almost placing blame on people for her suicide.
divergent
I remember only thinking this book was “okay” when I read it initially. The only thing that’s changed my mind about it is the movies, which I actually enjoyed… even though the last movie is never going to be made now, apparently. I just found it too similar to The Hunger Games at times.
half bad
I really just couldn’t enjoy this book. I tried so hard, but I found it utterly boring and I hated the characters.
You see a book you disagree with or think should be added? Let me know! I, for one, will be at the book store buying some new books my new friend suggested.

July 2018 TBR!

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Hey guys! Just popping in here real quick to share with you my TBR for this month:

 

The monthlong books I’ll be slowly chipping away at are:

 

The Bone Season (for #countdowntopriory)

Threatening Souls (for #halflostbutterflyreadalong)

LikeL1k3 (for #literaryllamabookclub)

Children of Blood and Bone (for #tonightshowsummerreads)

 

The books I’ll be reading for my readathon (July 7-8) are:

 

City of Ghosts

This Is Not The End

Girls of Paper and Fire

Rosemarked

Furyborn

 

The e-books I’m reading this month are:

 

Seer by Ashley Maker

 

The hard-copy review books I’m reading are:

 

Red Agenda by Cameron Poe

The War Outside by Monica Hesse

Darkwater Secrets by Robin Caroll

The Einstein Code by J.D. Welch

 

The KidLitExchange books I’m currently reading are:

 

Tiny Infinities

The Wren Hunt

Love and Carnivorous Plants

 

And a book I’m reading for fun is:

 

The Librarian of Auschwitz

 

Does that sound like a lot to you? Because I’m internally freaking out! I think I’ll make it but it’s always so scary at the beginning of each month. Hopefully I’ll make it though.

We Own The Sky by Sara Crawford

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the author. Thanks! All opinions are my own.

 

Rating: 4/5

 

Genre: YA Contemporary Romance

 

Recommended Age: 15+ (some sexual references)

 

Pages: 510

 

Author Website

 

Amazon Link

 

Synopsis: 16-year-old musician, Sylvia Baker, has always been different. She’s the only one who can see the “flickering people.” When she sees a gorgeous flickering man named Vincent, she learns that they are Muses.

With his help, she finds herself creating exquisite songs that she loves almost as much as songs by her favorite bands–Radiohead, M83, and The Black Keys–and she is falling in love in a way she never knew was possible. While trying to maintain her newfound friendships and her band, she falls deeper into the world of the Muses.

When the original Greek Muses wake to find a world in which the internet has given everyone the tools to be an artist, a battle between traditional and new methods of creation ensues. As Sylvia discovers how she is connected to the world of the Muses, she learns that this war may put her music, her love, her very life at stake.

 

Let’s start this off by saying this was a beautifully unique and moving book. I don’t think I’ve ever been so moved by a book that revolved around music except for Just Listen by Sarah Dessen. I thought it was well written and amazing. The characters were amazingly well constructed and complex. I loved the plot, I thought it was creative and well developed, and overall I felt that the book was one amazing song in itself.

 

The only tiny issues I had with the book are that Vincent gave me creeper vibes and I just couldn’t shake them. And the pacing was a bit sporadic at times. There were also some jumps in the scenes that didn’t make sense, but I don’t think they mattered overall for the book.

 

Verdict: If you’re looking for the perfect song, read this book.

The Linen God by Jim O’Shea

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from JustRead Tours and Wayside Press. Thanks! All opinions are my own.

Rating: 4.5/5

Genre: Mystery

Recommended Age: 15+ (mystery, intrigue, suspense… there’s nothing too adult in this book for younger readers but it is aimed at an older audience)

Pages: 282

Author Website

Amazon Link

Synopsis: The legendary Shroud of Turin is the most studied and controversial religious relic in human history. The ancient linen cloth bears the inexplicable image of a crucified man, alleged to be that of Jesus of Nazareth. What if it was real? What if the Shroud contained a secret powerful enough to alter the course of human history….and what if it fell into the wrong hands?

Manny Lusum is convinced the Shroud is the genuine article, and obsessed with proving it scientifically. Grace Barden is not only Manny’s best friend, but also secretly in love with the physics student and soon-to-be Catholic priest.

Across the globe, three grisly murders and the theft of a secret manuscript thrust Grace and Manny into a generations-old conspiracy of biblical proportions. From New York to Rome to the inner sanctum of the Vatican, they struggle to untangle a bizarre mystery surrounding the controversial artifact. In a dramatic confrontation between faith and the ultimate evil on the world stage, Grace and Manny are pushed to the edge of an abyss, balanced on the brink between heaven and hell.

I had never really read a Christian focused mystery book (not even the Da Vinci Code, don’t tell my momma), but I really enjoyed this one. I thought the plot was intriguing and the writing was superb. The book was mostly fast paced and heart pounding. There were a lot of twists and turns and in the end I was very surprised. I really liked this book and I really liked seeing the character development of the main characters.

However, I felt that the book could have focused a bit more on the side characters and some backstory. And I also felt that the plot slowed down a lot in some parts, so the pacing was a bit weird. But the pros definitely outweigh the cons for me in this one.

Verdict: A mystery you will love if you liked The Da Vinci Code.