Friday, March 31, 2017

Forget Tomorrow by Pintip Dunn

                                                     πŸŒŸπŸŒŸπŸŒŸ out of 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟stars

Imagine a world where your destiny has already been decided…by your future self.

It’s Callie’s seventeenth birthday and, like everyone else, she’s eagerly awaiting her vision―a memory sent back in time to sculpt each citizen into the person they’re meant to be. A world-class swimmer. A renowned scientist.

Or in Callie’s case, a criminal.

In her vision, she sees herself murdering her gifted younger sister. Before she can process what it means, Callie is arrested and placed in Limbo―a prison for those destined to break the law. With the help of her childhood crush, Logan, a boy she hasn’t spoken to in five years, she escapes the hellish prison.

But on the run from her future, as well as the government, Callie sets in motion a chain of events that she hopes will change her fate. If not, she must figure out how to protect her sister from the biggest threat of all.

Callie herself.

I thought that the premise of this book seemed interesting and different enough from other dystopian novels that I thought that I would give it a chance. It was mildly disappointing but still an overall enjoyable read. There were points in the book where I wasn't sure what to think. I got really confused because I didn't understand where characters were coming from or how the conclusions that they drew were supposed to change their fates. 

I could feel the chemistry between Logan and Callie although I didn't understand why their romance was such a focus in the book. I had trouble comprehending how with lives on the line along with Callie feeling like becoming a murderer was inescapable the romance was at the forefront of the story for a good portion of the book. If I was in Callie's situation, I don't think that I would be worrying about getting butterflies when my crush is around me. 

The book wasn't horrible, I just feel that it could have been better if not for the confusing choices the characters made, the in your face romance, and the at times confusing plot points. 

Reign of Crowns by Dani Hart

               ⭐⭐⭐ out of ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐stars
Title: Reign of Crowns
Series: Dupree Heights #1
Author: Dani Hart
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian
Release Date: April 6, 2017


One hundred years ago cyber technology evolved rapidly. Human interaction diminished as the need to leave home became obsolete. Doors closed and cities shut down, causing a tsunami of destruction. Humans were replaced with computers, the homeless rate increased exponentially, and families starved in the abandoned streets. The weak and poor died, the middle working class fell to the lower class, and the wealthy rose above everyone. The world was imploding from the inside out with no reprieve in sight.

My story begins on the fiftieth anniversary of a city raised from the ashes of a revolution and a name forged in the decay of innocent lives. With my heart pulled in two different directions, I am forced to make a choice to either walk in my mother’s footsteps to a scripted future and a perfect life, leaving my first love behind, or complete my father’s unfinished journey of redeeming the Dupree name.

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When Sterling shifted his body to mine, I didn’t flinch or scoot away from him. And when his hand reached for my face, I didn’t refuse it. I needed to know what there was between us. I wanted to know, and when his hand cupped my cheek, I leaned into it, soaking in his soft hands and noting the difference between Gray’s calloused overworked fingertips. And when Sterling’s eyes fixed on mine, pleading for permission, I didn’t say a word. As he inched closer, I closed my eyes and let his lips brush lightly over mine, catching my breath, but I didn’t dare move. An enchantment had fallen over us. I could see it beneath the darkness of my lids, and when his lips brushed lightly over mine again, I could feel it take hold of me. My lips parted slightly as I struggled to breathe through it, giving him the permission he was waiting patiently for to push his lips against mine. Slowly, he kissed my lips, taking care for my guilty heart and my broken promises. My first chance at love had turned into a battle, and if I didn’t choose a side soon, the ground would be soaked with blood and the sky filled with tears.

He kept his hand on my face when he pulled away, watching me as if I would either break or run away. He shook his head, and his deepened dimple appeared when a smile crept onto his face.

“What?” I asked in response.

“You. I can’t figure out if this is real. If you are real. I’m afraid if I blink that you might disappear like an angel taken by the wind. You have freed my heart.”

My words were lost, taken by the same breeze that stole his angel. His hand slid off my cheek. “I’m not a fool to think there haven’t been others that have filled your heart with joy, but I’m asking that you consider me to be one of them.”

His hair had fallen over his lashes, and when he peered up from his lap, my heart cracked open enough to let him sneak in. “I will consider it,” I said softly, holding back tears. What had I just done?

The drive home with Gray by my side was the worst kind of torture to befallen a guilty soul. And worse, he knew something had changed. His shoulders slouched in a way I had never seen before, and the light in his eyes had dulled. The power I had over him had given me a glance into a window I never wanted to enter, and I now understood how that kind of drunken power over people could destroy not only a single person but a whole city.

I wanted to reach out and touch him. I wanted to tell him how sorry I was, but I couldn’t with the driver watching me suspiciously through the rearview mirror. It was as though everyone knew of my treachery, and judgment had been placed.

Book Trailer:

Author Info:

I'm a...
Firefighter Wife
and so many other things.
I love my life and am so grateful for all of the support and have the courage to live a dream.

Goodreads -

I received an arc of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

I was immediately drawn to the character of Josephine. I loved how the author introduced us to her via reading in the rain. I loved her free spirit and quiet strength. I felt that she would certainly be a force to behold later on in the book. I understand that she was conflicted during the majority of the book regarding the decisions that she was forced to make. However, she did not exactly live up to the picture of her that I started drawing in the beginning. She seemed so indecisive that it bordered on annoying. It also seemed as if she was defending the debutante ideals to those around her even though it was the very thing that she hated. It caused a rift between the already unsteady relationship between Josie and her mother. 

I'm not sure if the author was trying to make it hard for readers to see who in Josie's circle could be trusted but I found it pretty obvious. I didn't find it bothersome though. There enough questions building up in my brain about other hints that were dropped regarding Josephine's father, etc, that made my focus remain elsewhere. I still have some questions about where this book is leading to and I am anxious to find out. I feel that a few bombs were dropped towards the end of the book and I'm not sure why that was. 

Reign of Crowns was different from anything I have read before which was refreshing. The premise of the book was interesting. It reminded me of the book The Selection a bit if anyone needs to understand what genre they are looking at. Young women are made to parade around like the debutantes were in Reign of Crowns in order to marry. It also involves an unrest between the social classes like The Selection does but that is where the similarities end. 

I would have liked to have had more action in the story but I can understand that this book was meant to be the build up into the next one in the series. I'm assuming that fairly big events are going to take place in the next book! I look forward to it!

Roseblood by A. G. Howard

                                                ⭐⭐⭐⭐ out of ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐stars

Rune Germain moves to a boarding school outside of Paris, only to discover that at this opera-house-turned-music-conservatory, phantoms really do exist. RoseBlood is a Phantom of the Opera–inspired retelling in which Rune’s biggest talent—her voice—is also her biggest curse. Fans of Daughter of Smoke and Bone and the Splintered series will find themselves captivated by this pulse-pounding spin on a classic tale.
Rune, whose voice has been compared to that of an angel, has a mysterious affliction linked to her talent that leaves her sick and drained at the end of every performance. Convinced creative direction will cure her, her mother ships her off to a French boarding school for the arts, rumored to have a haunted past.
Shortly after arriving at RoseBlood conservatory, Rune starts to believe something otherworldly is indeed afoot. The mystery boy she’s seen frequenting the graveyard beside the opera house doesn’t have any classes at the school, and vanishes almost as quickly as he appears. When Rune begins to develop a secret friendship with the elusive Thorn, who dresses in clothing straight out of the 19th century, she realizes that in his presence she feels cured. Thorn may be falling for Rune, but the phantom haunting RoseBlood wants her for a very specific and dangerous purpose. As their love continues to grow, Thorn is faced with an impossible choice: lead Rune to her destruction, or save her and face the wrath of the phantom, the only father he’s ever known.

After reading the Splintered trilogy, I knew that I wanted to read everything that A. G. Howard would write. When I found out that she was going to write a book that pertained to the Phantom of the Opera, I was beyond excited. I've always loved it and I knew that she could do it justice!

This book is very different from the Splintered trilogy. It still has a creepy edge to it that I believe to be classic A. G. Howard. Roseblood isn't as action packed but it packs a punch in a different way.  There is a certain amount of intrigue and mystery surrounding the Phantom, Thorn, and Rune and what will happen as the story goes on.It is difficult at times to figure out the motives behind the actions of the characters and who is on Rune's side during the course of the book. I believe that adds to the tension and makes the book more interesting. 

I loved the twist that A. G. Howard put on the classic story. It gave the story a higher level of danger than it previously had. I feel that it also provided an explanation for why the phantom's voice was so seductive and why Christine both admired and loathed him. This book had the same seductive quality to it as the original.  I feel as if when people sang or played an instrument in the book, I could hear it in my head as if I was really listening to an opera. 

I loved Rune but I have to say that my favorite character was Thorn. His past was devastating to read but it made me want to know everything else that there was to know about him. He was a complicated character who strived to have a strong moral compass but at times faltered. He was put in an impossible situation which led him to have to make an incredibly difficult choice. I could tell that he felt that he not only owed the phantom but also wanted to make him proud because he loved him. I appreciated his soft heart as well as his darkness. 

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

The Chemist by Stephenie Meyer

                                            🌟🌟🌟🌟 out of 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟stars

In this gripping page-turner, an ex-agent on the run from her former employers must take one more case to clear her name and save her life.

She used to work for the U.S. government, but very few people ever knew that. An expert in her field, she was one of the darkest secrets of an agency so clandestine it doesn’t even have a name. And when they decided she was a liability, they came for her without warning.
Now, she rarely stays in the same place or uses the same name for long. They’ve killed the only other person she trusted, but something she knows still poses a threat. They want her dead, and soon.

When her former handler offers her a way out, she realizes it’s her only chance to erase the giant target on her back. But it means taking one last job for her ex-employers. To her horror, the information she acquires only makes her situation more dangerous.

Resolving to meet the threat head-on, she prepares for the toughest fight of her life but finds herself falling for a man who can only complicate her likelihood of survival. As she sees her choices being rapidly whittled down, she must apply her unique talents in ways she never dreamed of.

I was excited to see that Stephenie Meyer wrote another book! I was looking forward to reading this ever since it was announced and it did not disappoint!

It was advertised as a Jason Bourne type of story and I feel that it was just that. I was not sure how Stephenie Meyer would do with this type of story since she typically does not write this type of genre but I was pleasantly surprised! I found the book to be thrilling. It wasn't the type of story wherein action takes place every minute but it still had me on the edge of my seat with the amount of tension that it supplied.

I loved the Juliana, the main character of the story. She was surprisingly refreshing. After reading the blurbs and synopsis of the book, I assumed that she would be another run of the mill CIA operative that can kick everyone's butts. The fact that she wasn't made her more interesting. I loved the fact that she used her intelligence as a weapon rather than fighting skills. The best description of her would be like a clever spider who traps and kills anyone that dares to come close to her web. 

The only things that I didn't enjoy about the book were that it was fairly predictable and that there was intsa-love. I could usually easily guess what was going to happen during parts of the story though this did not make the book terrible by any means. I still enjoyed the story but it would have been nice if it was a bit more out of the box during certain scenes.
There was also insta-love in this book and while I can understand how it could happen that quickly in their situation, all of my reasons for it were debunked by the author during the course of the story. I would have liked to see the romance aspect develop more rather than one of the characters saying that it was love at first sight. There was also another event that took place between the characters that I couldn't understand how someone could get past and love the other person. 

Saturday, March 25, 2017

A Million Worlds with You (Firebird #3) by Claudia Gray

                                          🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 out of 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟stars

Ever since she used the Firebird, her parent’s invention, to cross through alternate dimensions, Marguerite has been at the center of a cross-dimensional feud. Now she has learned that the evil Triad Corporation plans to destroy hundreds of universes, using their ultimate weapon: another dimension’s Marguerite who is wicked, psychologically twisted, and always one step ahead.

Even though her boyfriend Paul has always been at Marguerite’s side, the Triad’s last attack has left him a changed man, and he may never be the same again. Marguerite alone must stop Triad and prevent the destruction of the multiverse. It’s a battle of the Marguerites . . . and only one can win.
In the epic conclusion to the sweeping series that kicked off with A Thousand Pieces of You, fate and family will be questioned, loves will be won and lost, and the multiverse will be forever changed.

This book was an amazing conclusion to the Firebird trilogy!!! I loved everything about this book! 

I love how I was able to experience the universes again that had been visited in previous books but also have some new ones introduced. I'll admit it made it difficult to keep them all straight but I managed.  It was interesting to see even more sides to each of the characters especially Marguerite. I thought that the author's use of Marguerite's art in each universe in order to explain each of their personalities was so compelling. I love how even though she is breaking apart about what happened to Paul, she is still able to focus on the issue at hand which was saving the universes from evil Triad. She is such a strong character that has changed through sacrifice for the greater good even when she was terrified. I love her!!!

Paul was so different in this book. It was clear that the splintering had changed him and I wanted to heal with throughout the book. I felt so bad for him and heartbroken for Marguerite. There were times when I wanted to reach into the book and shake him but could also understand where he was coming from. He didn't feel like he could control himself or his emotions any longer. The splintering brought his insecurities to the forefront of his mind. 

Wicked Marguerite was involved in a larger portion of this book and can I just say she is sadistic. She had such a sick, twisted mind. I wanted to destroy her even after I learned more about what made her the person that she was. She didn't care about anyone but herself and she was proud of that fact. 

This book began right where the last one left off in the thick of things. I have to say that I think that Claudia Gray is an incredibly talented writer! I would read to certain points in this book and think "can things get any more tense or crazy?!? surely not" but then they would. There was still a fluidity and natural progression to the book regardless of how crazy things got. I actually had to take breaks while I was reading it because I was so emotionally invested. I had to get my breathing back under control and dry my tears. 

I believe that everyone should read this book! It is my favorite of the trilogy! It takes you on a roller coaster thrill ride where you will have no idea what is going to happen when the ride stops.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

All the Ugly and Wonderful Things: A Novel by Bryn Greenwood

A beautiful and provocative love story between two unlikely people and the hard-won relationship that elevates them above the Midwestern meth lab backdrop of their lives.
As the daughter of a drug dealer, Wavy knows not to trust people, not even her own parents. It's safer to keep her mouth shut and stay out of sight. Struggling to raise her little brother, Donal, eight-year-old Wavy is the only responsible adult around. Obsessed with the constellations, she finds peace in the starry night sky above the fields behind her house, until one night her star gazing causes an accident. After witnessing his motorcycle wreck, she forms an unusual friendship with one of her father's thugs, Kellen, a tattooed ex-con with a heart of gold.
By the time Wavy is a teenager, her relationship with Kellen is the only tender thing in a brutal world of addicts and debauchery. When tragedy rips Wavy's family apart, a well-meaning aunt steps in, and what is beautiful to Wavy looks ugly under the scrutiny of the outside world. A powerful novel you won’t soon forget, Bryn Greenwood's All the Ugly and Wonderful Things challenges all we know and believe about love.

There has been a lot of controversy with this book so I was hesitant to read it. It seemed like the people that read it fell into one of two categories: hated it because it promoted pedophilia or loved it because it is a love story. There didn't seem to be an in between with this book. This is the main reason that I decided not to rate it on here because it is about more than how much I enjoyed the plot. Of course, if you came to this blog from, you know that you have to put a rating. Anyway, mainly I want to focus on why I became the middle ground where this book is concerned.

I am able to see both sides of the issue with this novel. Lee me start with what I believe that the author was trying to say with this novel. I believe (and I could be horribly wrong) that the author was attempting to write a story wherein the main characters found love in the most unlikely of places. While this love may have started out innocently it became significantly more as the novel progressed. The characters were able to heal each other and give each other things that no one else could or was willing to. Each of the characters were flawed due to their upbringing and circumstances. They were each treated like garbage by those around them and developed quirks because of it. They were both misunderstood because it was hard for people to comprehend why they were the way that they were. 

While I was able to empathize with each of the main characters, I was uncomfortable with where the book went with the relationship between Wavy and Kellen. This is where I understand the readers who feel that the book is glorifying pedophilia. There is pedophilia in this book. No if, ans, or buts about it. It doesn't matter that Wavy was ok with the intimacy that happened between her and Kellen. There is a term called grooming which is when an adult befriends and establishes an emotional connection with a child, and sometimes the family, to lower the child's inhibitions. I cannot tell you how many children will say that when they were intimate with an adult in the same ways that Wavy is with Kellen in the book that it was because "they loved each other". I understand that I may anger some readers by saying these things but I cannot in good conscience say that what happened between Wavy and Kellen at certain points in the book is ok. 

I don't think that I have ever seen a more fitting title to a novel than this one. I can see the beauty of the love that transcends and the ugly in the world that they both come from as well as the intimacy that happens between them. I want to be clear that I am not saying that I hate the novel. I think that it is well written and the characters are fleshed out very well. I also thought that putting the different points of view in the book besides the main characters provided me, as the reader, with interesting information and background that I wouldn't have otherwise gotten. My problem with the book lies in what I have already mentioned in the above paragraph. Maybe the author wanted readers to feel uncomfortable. Maybe she was trying to tell readers not to live in the box that society and law have created. I have no idea. What I do know is that is you read this book, it will affect you in some way. 

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

The Crown's Game by Evelyn Skye

                                           🌟🌟🌟🌟 out of 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟stars

Vika Andreyeva can summon the snow and turn ash into gold. Nikolai Karimov can see through walls and conjure bridges out of thin air. They are enchanters—the only two in Russia—and with the Ottoman Empire and the Kazakhs threatening, the tsar needs a powerful enchanter by his side.
And so he initiates the Crown’s Game, an ancient duel of magical skill—the greatest test an enchanter will ever know.  The victor becomes the Imperial Enchanter and the tsar’s most respected adviser. The defeated is sentenced to death.
Raised on tiny Ovchinin Island her whole life, Vika is eager for the chance to show off her talent in the grand capital of Saint Petersburg. But can she kill another enchanter—even when his magic calls to her like nothing else ever has?
For Nikolai, an orphan, the Crown’s Game is the chance of a lifetime. But his deadly opponent is a force to be reckoned with—beautiful, whip smart, imaginative—and he can’t stop thinking about her.
And when Pasha, Nikolai’s best friend and heir to the throne, also starts to fall for the mysterious enchantress, Nikolai must defeat the girl they both love . . . or be killed himself.
As long-buried secrets emerge, threatening the future of the empire, it becomes dangerously clear . . . the Crown’s Game is not one to lose.

I was immediately intrigued when I read the above summary of the book when it was first released. The picture that it painted in my mind was one filled with action, romance, and magical forces similar to Harry Potter. I wanted to see if it lived up to the hype that I created in my mind not to mention the cover is beautiful. 

I was worried that it was historical because I don't typically read anything historical in nature no matter what genre it is. That is what stopped me from reading it initially but I'm glad that I pushed through that fear.  

This book captured my interest from the very beginning and did not let go even after I finished it. I was actually upset when it ended and checked a couple of times to make sure the last page was the last page. I wanted more immediately. I'm glad that the next book comes out soon because I have to know what happens next. 

I think what I enjoyed most about the book was the interaction between Vika and Nikolai as well as the conflict each of them must face between achieving their goal and essentially murdering the other one. They feel a certain pull toward each other but they are enemies in a sense. I found that aspect of the book so interesting. Neither of them want to admit weakness where the other is concerned or show any vulnerability. They know that only one of them can survive.

I also LOVED the magic in the book! I am a sucker for any kind of fantasy element in a book. I enjoyed that we got to see both sides of magic as well. There was a element of danger in even the most beautiful of enchantments in the book. 

I'm fairly certain that a few of the secondary characters that were introduced in the book will be brought to the forefront in the next book. I think that the author was hinting at some of them having underlying darkness with them. I have a feeling that there will be some chaos in the next book and I can't wait.

This is Love, Baby (War & Peace Book 2) by K Webster

                                           🌟🌟🌟🌟 out of 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟stars


My War was over and I had lost. My captor reminded me I was nothing more than his pawn.
His strategy never changed…it was always me.

But what he didn’t know was that LOVE always wins.

In my War, I’d found not only peace
but LOVE as well.

I’d been through a battlefield with my War and LOVE was what brought us to the other side.
Our LOVE was beautiful and pure. Undying.

My captor thinks he has won this war. That I will LOVE him.
What he doesn’t know is this time, I’m the one with a strategy. I’m always thinking several moves ahead of him, my War taught me that.

I will outsmart him and find peace again.
This is a war I will win.
My LOVE will conquer all.

This is Love, Baby starts off right in the middle of the action. I thought that things got much more tense and interesting. We as readers got to meet more characters which helped to explain the questions that were left in the first book. We get to find out what was going on with Baylee's parents as well as her boyfriend Brandon.
I had honestly thought that Brandon had been murdered or kidnapped in the first book so it was nice to get to find out what became of him in this book. I would have actually liked to see more of Brandon in this one. His mind was a really interesting place to be and I loved getting to see how Baylee being kidnapped affected him.

I enjoyed Baylee even more in this book than I did in the last one. She seemed to grow more of a backbone than she had in the last book. I appreciated that because I wanted more growth and strength from her in the first book.

The end of this book shocked me. I didn't see it coming at all and it wasn't very believable to be honest. There is no way that someone could survive the things that happened in this book. I won't go into details about it because it would spoil it but let's just say that it seems like a certain character is a terminator instead of a human who can die.

This is War, Baby (War & Peace Book 1) by K Webster

                                        🌟🌟🌟🌟 out of 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟stars

My life had a plan. Until he invaded it and stole it all away. My captor took me and I became a pawn.

His strategy changed and he sent me away to WAR, because money is everything in this world.

In my WAR, though, I found peace.

I couldn’t help but find love where I least expected it, with a man who lived a battle every day of his life
…all inside his head.
But then my captor came back for me.
Yet, this time, battle lines had been drawn and I was protected.

So we thought.
Even though my WAR was raging,
my captor would fight to the death.

The good guys always win, right?
Not always.
All’s fair in love and WAR, right?
Not this time.

I wasn't sure what to expect when I started reading this book. I thought that it might have been like the other books out there about a girl who is kidnapped or sold then falls in love with her captor. It was a lot different than the other books in that other players are involved making it a complex situation. It makes the title make a lot more sense knowing that war is in the title of the book. 

I wanted to rip Gabe's head off from the first moment we are introduced to him in the book. He reminded me of the classic information that I have read about rapists. In his head, he sees Baylee as loving him and enjoying the torture that he inflicts on her body. In reality, she is fighting with everything that she has to stay alive and keep her sanity intact.

I loved War! I know that he lived in his head and struggled with his issues but you could tell he had a beautiful soul. He cared for Baylee so completely and wanted to heal the damage that had been inflicted on her. I could appreciate his struggle and loved getting the chance to be in his head. It was so interesting to know the direction that his thoughts would take and how it seemed as if he could take any situation or touch and turn it into something "dirty" or "disgusting" because of his mental health issues.

This book felt like a race to the finish wherein anything could happen. It was obvious that we were going to see Gabe again but I just wasn't sure how. I look forward to what madness he will cook up in the next book.

The book felt a little fragmented with the beginning being so dark and then the second half or so being more brightly lit so to speak. I suppose the author was trying to show the readers the difference between the two men in Baylee's life during her captivity which would make more sense. It just felt a bit off.

This book ends with a bit of a cliffhanger so if you don't appreciate those you may not want to read this book. If you decide to read it anyway, know that it is a great book! I love the characters and the author does a fantastic job of letting you in their heads and beginning a story that I believe will get even darker and tense!

Monday, March 20, 2017

Dear Agony by Georgia Cates

                                              ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ out of ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐stars

Dear Agony,

You've been my shadow, following me through childhood—filling my days and nights with terror and uncertainty. You cleverly disguised yourself as some form of pain or suffering as I grew into a young woman. We were unwavering companions … until I severed our ties.

I traded homelessness on the streets of New Orleans for a luxurious bed covered by the finest linens.
I traded dumpster diving for dinner in the finest restaurants.
I traded myself to a stranger—Bastien Pascal.

I have a good life within my platonic and mutually beneficial companionship with Bash.
He’s my friend. My mentor. My roommate.
Until everything changes.

I’m not supposed to get goosebumps when his hand brushes my skin.
I’m not supposed to be eager for his soothing touch following one of my nightmares.
I’m not supposed to think about what might happen if I reached out to him in the darkness.

Falling in love with him? Preposterous . . . unavoidable.

Agony, why are you back with a vengeance to rob me of this life I’ve come to love so dearly?

I’m finally happy. Don’t ruin this for me.

Always yours,

In this epic love story, Dear Agony forges a connection between an unlikely pair—a beautiful rose entwined in barbed wire and a shipwreck sinking into the darkest depths of the ocean. This agonizing romantic novel poses some gut-wrenching questions: What does a woman do when the man she loves is planning his own demise? And how far will she go to give him something to live for?

This book lives up to its name! It is a heartbreaking story that you will definitely need to have a box of tissues beside you when you read it. It will rip your heart out and stomp on it. 

We as readers are introduced to our two main characters who come from completely different backgrounds but are able to find each other through a mutual friend, Vale who runs the Duets Foundation. It is difficult to tell what each of them are going through towards the beginning of the story. We are just led to believe that Rose has suffered some amount of trauma in her life and that Bastien  is having some sort of health issues. 

I loved each of these characters. They demonstrated incredible amounts of strength but at the same time were vulnerable. I feel like each of them needed love and were looking for it but they didn't know it themselves. When we meet Rose she is a homeless street performer and the author really makes you feel her heartache and desperation. Rose held such a strong capacity to love even though the people around her treated her like scum and she didn't think that her life would ever get better. 

I loved Bastien right away. His sense of humor and genuineness drew me to him. There were times when I didn't understand Bastien but I have never been through what he was going through and can't say that I wouldn't feel the same way about certain things. He made me angry but then I would feel guilty for judging him when the author would explain his thoughts on the matters at hand. 

I loved this book! It was different from the typical "wounded people meet each other and are fixed by each other" book. No one was "fixed" by the end of the book. Their love helped them to heal but the book was realistic in the sense that health problems don't always disappear. Relationships take a lot of work and these two had to work throughout the book. Rose had to take on more work brought about by the fact that Bastien was sick and that brought out the insecurities in him as well as feeling like a burden. 

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Indebted (The Premonition #3) by Amy A. Bartol

                                                      ⭐⭐⭐⭐ out of ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ stars

I hang my head in sorrow for just a moment when I know I am truly alone. I feel like I’m going to my execution, just as he had said. Then I move forward again. I hop a fence of fieldstone and cross a field dotted with Queen Anne’s lace. Goose bumps rise on my arms as I pass the cluster of windmills that I have seen in a dream. The scent is sweet in the field though, not the scent of heat, like it had been when it was forced upon me in visions. I gaze down the hill, beyond the small, whitewashed house that I knew would be there. The church looms dark and grim with its rough-hewn, timber faΓ§ade, capped by tall, oblong spires reaching to the sky. Black, ominous clouds have collected above the roofline, as if Heaven is showing me the way.

I loved this book way more than the last one! The action picks up and readers get the chance to see what Evie and Russell are capable of. I still think that there will be more abilities to come from each of them but the new ones are very cool. I will say that some of the abilities that that come into play in this one were confusing for me. They were not abilities that I typically think of when I think of angels but it didn't bother me so much that I can't enjoy the book. 

I found the relationship between Brennan and Evie particularly interesting in this book moreso than the last one. The author delves deeper into both sides of the relationship and we get a clearer understanding of where both of them are coming from. I also feel that their relationship is made even more interesting by the fact that Evie fights against it so hard but that there is a darkness within her that pulls her toward it. 

There are more questions that are answered in this one like the identity of Evie's father. I'm hoping that we get to meet him in the next one because I feel like the author made him intriguing. There are also more types of creatures that are introduced in this story but it didn't bug me as much as it did in the last book because they were not the focus. 

The fallens' plan gets fleshed out more in this book and I have to say that the direction that the author is taking it in is awesome! I feel that this direction will create much more tension and the lines between good and evil will truly be blurred. My theory is that it will come to a point where there is a huge gray area wherein divine angel will be fighting on the side of fallen and vice versa. I also think that the whole reason that Evie and now Russell exist is to shake things up and get the angels and other creatures to see that everything in the world isn't as black and white as they like to think. 

Monday, March 13, 2017

Intuition (The Premonition #2) by Amy A. Bartol

                                                    ⭐⭐⭐ out of ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐stars

I don’t open my eyes so I can’t see him, but I can smell him. He thickens the air I breathe, choking me with his scent…his aroma. I shiver. I have to resist. If I’m not strong, then I will be relegated to the same fate as this predator whose sickness infects me even now. But now, I crave him and he knows that; he has been counting on my need to end the gnawing pain. How he would savor my surrender. I’m alive, but how much longer will it take until I beg him not to be?

Let me start by saying that I thought that the first book in this series (Inescapable) was pretty good. I thought that it did a fairly good job of setting the scene for the series and introducing us to the characters that we as readers would be following throughout the books. 

I'm still not sure how I feel about this book. I've been going back and forth with myself because I didn't like the focus of this book. I don't understand why the author felt as if she needed to add other types of creatures into the series. I thought that there was enough action and interesting plot points without adding that. I would have preferred the focus to be on the fallen versus the angels from paradise. 

I'm wondering if the author wanted to move the story further away from what readers have said was twilight-like by doing so. It made me like the story less to be honest and those characteristics still exist. Evie is still torn somewhat between Russell and Reed and wants to protect everyone but herself. 

I thought that the author could have taken some of the things that she set up in the first book in a different direction to make this story more interesting and action-packed but it felt like some things were just left out to dry so to speak. For example, Russell having been changed by what happened in the first book could have added another level to the story but it seemed like all the author did with it was say that he was stronger. 

The book had the potential to be great but I feel like it faltered. The characters didn't seem to change and more problems were added rather than getting more information about the original issues. 

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

The Forgotten Girl by Jessica Sorensen

                                            🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 out of 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 stars

Twenty-one year-old Maddie Asherford is haunted by a past she can’t remember. When she was fifteen years old, there was a tragic accident and she was left with amnesia.

In the aftermath, Maddie’s left struggling with who she is—the forgotten girl she was six years ago or the Maddie she is now. Sometimes it even feels like she might be two different people—the good Maddie and the bad one.

Good Maddie goes to therapy, spends time with her family, and works on healing herself. Bad Maddie rebels and has dark thoughts of hurting people and sometimes even killing them.

For the most part, Maddie manages to keep her twisted thoughts hidden. That is until she starts having blackouts. Each time she wakes up from one, she’s near a murder scene with no recollection of what happened the night before and this helpless feeling like she’s losing control of her life. Maddie doesn’t want to believe she’s a killer, but she begins to question who she really was in her past. If she was bad Maddie all along and that maybe she was a killer.

I loved this book! I think that this may be my favorite book that I have read from Jessica Sorenson! I love reading psychological thrillers and this one was artfully crafted. This book was incredibly dark but I enjoyed that aspect of it.

I feel that for the most part the things that were uncovered by the end of the book were fairly predictable but the book was so well written that I didn't care. I was frustrated while reading it though because, we as the reader, are literally on the same page as Maddie for the entire book. We know what she knows but it was on no way slow paced. The pacing was appropriate and kept me feeling tense and captivated with the story the entire way through.

I thought that the way that the author went about the points of view in the book was interesting. It drew me into the story more and helped me to understand Maddie. I could understand why she was so confused, afraid, and angry at herself as well as her situation. I won't go into details because I don't want to put any spoilers in this review but just know that it makes for an intriguing way of getting into the main character's head.

I found this book to be fascinating. I was hooked from the very first page and immediately tried to piece together the puzzle to understand what was happening to Maddie and how the book would end. 

I will say that if you don't like dark books or books that don't necessarily have a happy ending, you may not want to read this one. I, for one, will be reading this one again because one read through is not enough.