(DNF) Ruthless Magic, by Megan Crewe | {ARC} Book Review #379

I received an Advanced Reader Copy of Ruthless Magic by Megan Crewe from Another World Press, via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This in no way impacted my review.

In the contest to keep their magic, the only options may be die… or kill.

39718964Each year, the North American Confederation of Mages assesses every sixteen-year-old novice. Some will be chosen. The rest must undergo a procedure to destroy their magical ability unless they prove themselves in the mysterious and brutal Mages’ Exam.

Disadvantaged by her parents’ low standing, Rocío Lopez has dedicated herself to expanding her considerable talent to earn a place in the Confederation. Their rejection leaves her reeling—and determined to fight to keep her magic.

Long ashamed of his mediocre abilities, Finn Lockwood knows the Confederation accepted him only because of his prominent family. Declaring for the Exam instead means a chance to confirm his true worth.

Thrown into the testing with little preparation, Rocío and Finn find themselves becoming unlikely allies—and possibly more. But the Exam holds secrets more horrifying than either could have imagined. What are the examiners really testing them for? And as the trials become increasingly vicious, how much are they willing to sacrifice to win?


Publication Date: May 30, 2018.

I had high hopes for Ruthless Magic. There was so much I was looking forward to. However once I started reading the story I immediately realized that I only enjoyed one of the points of view (there are two POV’s).

First we read from Finn and honestly, once I knew it was a male point of view I was a little shocked. However, I hoped that there’d be a second point of view and there was! I also hoped that Finn’s story would get more interesting, instead of filling me with anxiety. Finn wanted to please his father but also have enough power like the rest of his family.

The second point of view we read from is Rocío. She’s a witch who has incredible power. I actually really like her character.

I ended up not liking this book, unfortunately. I DNF’d Ruthless Magic at 13%.

Happy Reading!
— Adele

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The Dragon Librarian, by Marc Secchia | Book Review #378

Blind. Outcast. Accursed. From the meanest of beginnings, greatness will rise.

Abandoned at birth by her parents, Auli-Ambar is seen as a child blighted by a callous 38201186talon-stroke of fate. A worthless burden. She is blind, severely disfigured, and fit only for the most menial tasks. Then, a simple act of kindness changes her life. Flown to the Halls of the Dragons, the painfully shy girl becomes a cleaner of Dragon roosts, and a helpless wanderer of the Dragon Library.

Here, Auli is able to walk amidst the lore she is drawn to so profoundly. Touch it. Imagine worlds within scrolls. She thrills to the hallowed scents of knowledge, but aches for what blindness has forever denied her. In the cruellest of ironies, Auli discovers she possesses a magic that makes people and Dragons forget her very existence. This is disremembrance, the accursed power of loneliness. She can only despair.

One will not forget. Deep amidst the forbidden racks of draconic scroll lore, where Auli-Ambar has unwittingly breached the protective wards, the young Dragon scholar, Arkurion the Mercury Blue, will discover her true gift and ignite its flame. Now, in the environs of a magical library overseen by the mighty Dragon Librarian Sazutharr, the extraordinary courage and integrity of a blind girl will finally be given the chance to blossom.

Little did they suspect that the fate of all Dragonkind would rest in her hands.


Trigger Warning: Abuse.

From what I recall, there are a few abuse scenes in the very beginnings of The Dragon Librarian.

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I didn’t think much of The Dragon Librarian as a book when I downloaded it. Nor did I take into account how long this book is. The Dragon Librarian is over 500 pages long, and it is one hell of a journey. Continue reading

The School for Good and Evil, by Soman Chainani | Book Review #377

IMG_3279

The first kidnappings happened two hundred years before. Some years it was two boys taken, some years two girls, sometimes one of each. But if at first the choices seemed random, soon the pattern became clear. One was always beautiful and good, the child every parent wanted as their own. The other was homely and odd, an outcast from birth. An opposing pair, plucked from youth and spirited away.

This year, best friends Sophie and Agatha are about to discover where all the lost children go: the fabled School for Good & Evil, where ordinary boys and girls are trained to be fairy tale heroes and villains. As the most beautiful girl in Gavaldon, Sophie has dreamed of being kidnapped into an enchanted world her whole life. With her pink dresses, glass slippers, and devotion to good deeds, she knows she’ll earn top marks at the School for Good and graduate a storybook princess. Meanwhile Agatha, with her shapeless black frocks, wicked pet cat, and dislike of nearly everyone, seems a natural fit for the School for Evil.

But when the two girls are swept into the Endless Woods, they find their fortunes reversed—Sophie’s dumped in the School for Evil to take Uglification, Death Curses, and Henchmen Training, while Agatha finds herself in the School For Good, thrust amongst handsome princes and fair maidens for classes in Princess Etiquette and Animal Communication.. But what if the mistake is actually the first clue to discovering who Sophie and Agatha really are…?


This review has been copied and pasted from my GoodReads.

In this first book to The School for Good and Evil trilogy we see that something is definitely up with both Sophie and Agatha. The School for Good and Evil, shows us that you could look like anything, and still be portrayed in the wrong way, when your character is totally different.  Continue reading

(DNF) Has to Be Love, by Jolene Perry | {ARC} Book Review #376

I received an Advanced Reader Copy of Has to Be Love by Jolene Perry from Albert Whitman & Company, via Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review. This in no way impacted my review.

26532244Years ago, Clara survived a vicious bear attack. She’s used to getting sympathetic looks around town, but meeting strangers is a different story. Yet her dreams go far beyond Knik, Alaska, and now she’s got a secret that’s both thrilling and terrifying—an acceptance letter from Columbia University. But it turns out her scars aren’t as fixable as she hoped, and when her boyfriend begins to press for a forever commitment, she has second thoughts about New York. Then Rhodes, a student teacher in her English class, forces her to acknowledge her writing talent, and everything becomes even more confusing—especially with the feelings she’s starting to have about him. Now all Clara wants to do is hide from the tough choices she has to make. When her world comes crashing down around her, Clara has to confront her problems and find her way to a decision. Will she choose the life of her dreams or the life that someone she loves has chosen? Which choice is scarier?


Publication Date: September 25, 2015.

Please note that I marked Has to Be Love as Did Not Finish (DNF) at 23%. 

Initially I had high hopes for Has to Be Love. I really wanted to know what happened to Clara and if she came to terms with her scars, or if she got her scars fixed. yet quickly into reading Has to Be Love, I realized that this book just wasn’t for me. Which is disappointing, because I genuinely did want to end up liking this book.

What I didn’t like about this novel was that I did not like the attraction that Clara had towards her new student-teacher that is still, technically, a student himself. That’s what drew me away from finishing the rest of this novel.

I give Has to Be Love, 1 star.

Happy Reading!
— Adele

Say What You Will, by Cammie McGovern | Book Review #375

18635084Born with cerebral palsy, Amy can’t walk without a walker, talk without a voice box, or even fully control her facial expressions. Plagued by obsessive-compulsive disorder, Matthew is consumed with repeated thoughts, neurotic rituals, and crippling fear.

Both in desperate need of someone to help them reach out to the world, Amy and Matthew are more alike than either ever realized.

When Amy decides to hire student aides to help her in her senior year at Coral Hills High School, these two teens are thrust into each other’s lives. As they begin to spend time with each other, what started as a blossoming friendship eventually grows into something neither expected.


This review has been copied and pasted from my GoodReads account.

This story is so, so, SO cute. Im so happy for the characters, Amy and Matthew. I didn’t really expect to like this book, since it seems like they’re from different sides of the pond.
Im actually learning so much by reading this book. Say What You Will is teaching me, in its own way, what people with Cerebral Palsy go through. We tend to be nicer to them, and sugar coat things for people who have more difficulties. We tend to forget that people, no matter the circumstance, just want to be treated like people too.
I’m writing this just about an hour or so after I finished the book. Say What You Will is an amazing novel. Not only do we see two teenagers going throughout their last year of high school, we see two young people with some disabilities over come and grow in character. Both Matthew and Amy teach each other things that they wouldn’t have learned form anyone else.
Here we see two young people fall in love, get separated by an event and then come back together many months later.
By writing this, I probably haven’t done the novel justice. So I hereby declare that, if you haven’t read the book already, please do. Its well worth the read.

Breaking Benjamin, by Haylee Thorne and Michelle Windsor | Book Review #374

40230857Benjamin Sapphire is tall, dark, handsome, and very rich. He’s ex-military who lost more than friends while in combat; he lost a part of himself, literally. Wealth, good looks and his irresistible charm provide a revolving door of women in his bed. Finding someone to help fill the black hole that was once his heart is another story. Until he meets her…

Jill Baldwin is not just beautiful, blonde, and brilliant; she’s a ball buster. She knows who she is and what she wants, and won’t settle for anything less. She’s worked her ass off to open one of the hottest spa’s in the city and is enjoying the spoils of her success. Her business is her life and not even the sexiest man she’s ever encountered is going to mess with that… Right?

Check out this cross-over series featuring Benjamin Sapphire from Michelle Windsor’s The Auction Series, and Jill Baldwin from Haylee Thorne’s Kingsley Series to see what kind of sparks fly when their two worlds collide!


I was excited to read Breaking Benjamin because I read a review for the book and thought “May as well!” Especially since I’ve been in a romance book mood lately.

Breaking Benjamin is really about two people who believe they’re broken come together. Pun unintended. *cough* A story of two people falling in-love.  Continue reading

Graceling, by Kristin Cashore | Book Review #373

IMG_5927Katsa has been able to kill a man with her bare hands since she was eight—she’s a Graceling, one of the rare people in her land born with an extreme skill. As niece of the king, she should be able to live a life of privilege, but Graced as she is with killing, she is forced to work as the king’s thug.

She never expects to fall in love with beautiful Prince Po.

She never expects to learn the truth behind her Grace—or the terrible secret that lies hidden far away . . . a secret that could destroy all seven kingdoms with words alone.

With elegant, evocative prose and a cast of unforgettable characters, debut author Kristin Cashore creates a mesmerizing world, a death-defying adventure, and a heart-racing romance that will consume you, hold you captive, and leave you wanting more.


I’ve had Graceling in the back of my mind, off and on again, for the last 2 ish years. It feels like it’s been more than that, but what can I say. My memory is terrible. Every once in a while I’ll be scrolling on tumblr, or I’ll just be doing something in my everyday life and then I’m reminded of Graceling. Either by a post I randomly found via tumblr, or the title of this book will pop up in my mind for an unknown reason. Either way, Graceling has been on my radar for quite some time now. Continue reading

The Spirit Chaser, by Kat Mayor | {ARC} Book Review #372

I received an Advanced Reader Copy of The Spirit Chaser by Kat Mayor from CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, via Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review. This in no way impacted my review.

Trigger Warning:
Blood, Possession, Suicide,
Drug Paraphernalia, Drug Use Mention

Some places are too evil. Some places should be left alone.

27171931Austin Cole has it made. Star of the hit television show Spirit Chaser Investigations, he has become the world’s most famous paranormal investigator. Although hard work, a talented investigation team, and favorable genetics have something to do with it, it’s his lack of fear and willingness to take risks no one else will that make Spirit Chaser Investigations cable’s number-one show. When a ghost-hunt-gone-wrong seriously injures his best friend and lead psychic, Austin is forced to find a replacement for a team member he considers irreplaceable.

Casey Lawson can’t catch a break. She’s been on her own since she turned eighteen and is scraping by as a part-time psychic and cashier at a New Age store. When a desperate Austin Cole calls her up and offers her a position on his team, has her fortune finally changed?

He’s a control freak; she’s stubborn and opinionated. It takes time, but when they finally realize they’re working on the same side, everything clicks, both on and off screen.

Over the years Austin has angered plenty of demons, and one of them has set her sights on him. Now he’s the one in danger, and it’s up to the team to rescue him from the riskiest investigation of their lives.


Publication Date: November 03, 2015.

It’s been quite a while since I last read a Horror/ Romance novel and I was so excited. What piqued my interest about The Spirit Chaser was actually the fact that the characters in this story actually make up a TV show that they themselves star in. Think “Ghost Hunters,” or “Ghost Adventures” (my personal favourite).

In the first chapter there were multiple points of view that bled into one another, making the story seem all the more confusing, I had to really concentrate on what was being said. Quickly I acclimated to the way the story was being told. Which helped a lot because we’re never given a way to decipher whose point of view we’re reading from. You really have to concentrate on the way the story is being told to not only understand what was happening, but to be able to understand whose point of view you’re reading from.  Continue reading

Inherit the Stars by Tessa Elwood | {ARC} Book Review #371

I received an Advanced Reader Copy of Inherit the Stars by Tessa Elwood, from Perseus Books, Running Press, via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This in no way impacted my review.

Trigger Warning:
Blood

25463009Three royal houses ruling three interplanetary systems are on the brink of collapse, and they must either ally together or tear each other apart in order for their people to survive.

Asa is the youngest daughter of the house of Fane, which has been fighting a devastating food and energy crisis for far too long. She thinks she can save her family’s livelihood by posing as her oldest sister in an arranged marriage with Eagle, the heir to the throne of the house of Westlet. The appearance of her mother, a traitor who defected to the house of Galton, adds fuel to the fire, while Asa also tries to save her sister Wren’s life . . . possibly from the hands of their own father.

But as Asa and Eagle forge a genuine bond, will secrets from the past and the urgent needs of their people in the present keep them divided?


Publication Date: December 08, 2015.

I’m not gonna lie, I’m a total mood reader. It’s taken me a while to get back into the groove of wanting to read Science Fiction novels.

I have high hopes for Inherit the Stars. I imagined that this novel would be action packed with a bit of romance.  Continue reading

(DNF) The Witch of Painted Sorrows, by M.J. Rose | {ARC} Book Review #370

I received an Advanced Reader Copy of The Witch of Painted Sorrows by M.J. Rose, from Atria Books via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This in no way impacted my review.

Possession. Power. Passion. New York Times bestselling novelist M. J. Rose creates her most provocative and magical spellbinder yet in this gothic novel set against the lavish 22608210spectacle of 1890s Belle Époque Paris.

Sandrine Salome flees New York for her grandmother’s Paris mansion to escape her dangerous husband, but what she finds there is even more menacing. The house, famous for its lavish art collection and elegant salons, is mysteriously closed up. Although her grandmother insists it’s dangerous for Sandrine to visit, she defies her and meets Julien Duplessi, a mesmerizing young architect. Together they explore the hidden night world of Paris, the forbidden occult underground and Sandrine’s deepest desires.

Among the bohemians and the demi-monde, Sandrine discovers her erotic nature as a lover and painter. Then darker influences threaten—her cold and cruel husband is tracking her down and something sinister is taking hold, changing Sandrine, altering her. She’s become possessed by La Lune: A witch, a legend, and a sixteenth-century courtesan, who opens up her life to a darkness that may become a gift or a curse.

This is Sandrine’s “wild night of the soul,” her odyssey in the magnificent city of Paris, of art, love, and witchery.


Publication Date: March 17, 2015.

What I was looking forward to most in The Witch of Painted Sorrows, was the Gothic, Witches, Fantasy and Romance aspects of this novel. What I wasn’t looking forward to was the Historical Fiction. I don’t normally read Historical Fiction unless there’s quite a bit of fantasy to overlap it, and I was sincerely hoping that in The Witch of Painted Sorrows, the Fantasy aspects of this novel would overtake the fact that this book takes place in the year 1894.

The writing feels is akin to something that comes out of an age-old fairy tale.

Drawn in by the alluring synopsis, i pictured that The Witch of Painted Sorrows would be a quick read. While the story was entertaining, it is not one that I could have enjoyed to the fullest.

I didn’t like that The Witch of Painted Sorrows was slow on the uptake.

What I liked about The Witch of Painted Sorrows is that I could very easily be drawn into the story. With the slow build up of the story however, I knew that I was *reading* a story, rather than living the story alongside the character.

I marked The Witch of Painted Sorrows as Did Not Finish (DNF) at 23%.

I give (what I read of) The Witch of Painted Sorrows, 2 stars.

Happy Reading!
— Adele