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Book Review: The Myth Seeker by Cory Barclay

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Goodreads.com – The Myth Seeker by Cory Barclay

Amazon.com – The Myth Seeker by Cory Barclay

Disclaimer: I was sent an ARC copy of this book by the author, Cory Barclay, for an honest review

Genre: Fiction/Urban Fantasy

Plot: A banshee who just wants to sing.
A leprechaun with a gambling problem.
A sex-addicted succubus in recovery.
Vampires who want a sunny day at the beach.
And then there’s Steve, the regular Joe who inadvertently brought these flawed mythical beings to our world. But he has no idea how he did it, which is a problem, because it’s his job to bring them home.
All this responsibility is putting a serious damper on Steve’s directionless lifestyle. Then he finds out a dark force is trying to kill him and his friends. And he might be falling in love with one of his charges…
Steve realizes he must get his act together, before it’s too late…

Opinion: If you have been keeping up with my reviews lately, you will know that I am a big fan of Cory Barclay’s Of Witches and Werewolves series. It had grabbed my attention with its imaginative story that is based loosely on true events, the wonderful character and story building, and Cory’s ability to write in a way that transports the reader back in time.

So naturally, when Cory asked me to read and review his newest story The Myth Seeker, I jumped at the chance. I love witnessing an author I enjoy trying something new and stepping out of their writing “norm”, and this new urban fantasy sounded really promising. Unfortunately, this just really didn’t hit the mark for me and I am left feeling a little disappointed and confused.

Steve Remington is trying desperately to make it in the music world and to hold on to his sobriety, just one day at a time. While at his father’s funeral Steve comes across a young girl named Annabel playing a guitar against a headstone, and offers his services to help her make a record. But little do Annabel and Steve know that their worlds have changed forever. Soon strange things begin to happen every time Annabel sings, and even stranger characters begin to pop up in Steve’s life. Leprechauns, angels, vampires, druids are suddenly everywhere, and Steve seems to be at the epicenter of the chaos.

As I had said above, I was really looking forward to reading this story. I love ANYTHING Fantasy, especially when it involves such an array of mythical creatures and magic. I am very fond of Cory Barclay’s writing style in the Of Witches and Werewolves series, as well as his ability to connect the characters and the reader so easily. I have found that this author writes lengthy stories that build a fantastic plot and world, but doesn’t overdo it with giving the reader too much information and “fluff”. His characters are always quirky and somewhat flawed, but feel very real and important to the reader. Not only do I always stay completely glued to his stories, but I often find myself not expecting the ending or what will happen next.

When it comes to The Myth Seeker however, I feel like it is lacking in a lot of those qualities that I enjoy from this author. Though the idea for this story is both thoughtful and intriguing, I personally feel like it missed the mark. This story is an urban fantasy set in present times in Southern California, and combines the world that we know with another mythical plane/realm/world. I felt that this movement from Cory writing historical fictions set in the 16th century to present, changed his writing style to something that felt more forced than natural. The writing felt too wordy at times and focused on one moment or scene for way too long, which in turn made it seem like a lot was being repeated. It felt a bit too wordy during many of the dialogues, and took away from the overall story and what was happening. It seems like a lot of useless “fluff” was put in to fill up space when it came to conversation between characters, or our main character observing or describing something. I would have preferred more story building rather than reading about a lot of things that felt unnecessary, in my opinion.

I also had a hard time connecting with any of the characters. By the end of the story I found Steve to be pretentious, arrogant, overly crude and honestly…he just kind of rubbed me the wrong way. I was a little turned off by the overuse of crudeness and excessive cussing by him. DON’T GET ME WRONG. I cuss like a sailor, and I understand he’s a macho kind of character. But when it comes to writing, I think there should be a distinction between the character being cruder and the entire story adopting that style. I think that an author using more raunchy ways of writing takes away from their writing skills and the story, and it makes it look like that they don’t have the ability to write in a more sophisticated way. Which I KNOW to be untrue regarding Cory Barclay, because I have seen proof of his amazing writing.

The character of Annabel also threw me for a bit of a loop. She spoke in a very formal way that was meant to make her look worldly and to back the notion that her parents (who are vampires) are from a VERY long time ago. All fine and dandy. But for some reason, the way she “spoke” kept making me visualize a pre-teen rather than a young adult. Her character came off as very young and naïve, and even Dale and Steve would speak to her like she was a young child. So obviously when the romance between Steve and Annabel eventually arouse, I was more than a little taken aback and confused. Because of my disconnect for these characters, I didn’t find myself caring about what happened to them.

I think because of those issues that I had while reading, it took away from my appreciation from this story. I found myself predicting the ending and speed-reading through because of the little things that were throwing me off. I think Cory had the right idea for this story, but that it could have been shaped a little better. I am really upset that I wasn’t as enthralled with this story as I was with his other series, but I have confidence in Cory’s writing that he will produce countless enjoyable and interesting stories in the future.

2-5-stars

 

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Book Promo: Release Day for Until by Anna B. Doe!

Forever Valentine PR and More is proud to partner with Anna B. Doe for the Release Blitz for 

UNTIL (New York Knights, book #2)!
Title: Until
Series: New York Knights, book 2
Author: Anna B. Doe 
Genre: Contemporary Sports Romance
Cover Design: Emily Wittig, Emily Wittig Designs and Photography
Release Date: January 5th, 2018
 
In the war of wills, broody football player finds his match in a beautiful supermodel. What could go wrong? 



Until is kind of darkish and sexy story about two people who don’t believe in love, yet can’t escape falling.

I was betrayed by those who I loved. Those who I believed in. It was the first and the last time I let myself love someone outside my family. A little girl grew up and opened her eyes. Love makes you weak. It makes you wish for the thing you can’t have. It makes you vulnerable, and I swore I will never again go down that path.
 
Until I met him—Jack Daniel Shelton. 
 
She left me. She ruined me. The day I found her gone I promised myself I’ll never let anyone have that kind of hold on me. Especially not a woman. Now she is back. No matter how much time has passed, no matter what I tell myself, her hold on me is still strong. There is also a secret she’s been keeping from me. A secret I can’t escape from, but a secret I can’t turn my back to either. A secret that could ruin everything I worked for.
 
And then, there is her—Sienna Roberts—everything was just as it was supposed to be. That is until she walked in my life. 
 
Can two souls that lost faith in love find it in one another?
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36872963-until

ONE-CLICK Until for $0.99 or read for free with KU!

AMAZON US: http://a.co/hlME2mo  

AMAZON UK: http://amzn.eu/3C0BdrE  

AMAZON CA: http://a.co/5WTHqJM

Exclusive excerpt from UNTIL 
“We meet again, baby doll.”   
“I’m no doll or princess, hot shot.” I lift my chin into the air. 
A soft chuckle falls from his lips. “What are you then?”
“A rebel, all sass, and attitude.”
His fingertips slowly touch my cheek. “For me, you’ll always be a doll.”
His words are soft caresses against my skin. I take a step back to break the spell his words left me under and narrow my eyes at him. 
There hasn’t been a man that affected me like that in … ever.
I don’t know what it is about J.D., but every time he’s near I lose myself to him. 
Johnny calls out and breaks our staring contest. He leads us through different poses, every one sexy but sophisticated. 
J.D.’s hands move over my body—it’s nothing like it was that night. They are on my waist, back, or somewhere on my arms. It’s simple and professional.
But his hold is like I remember it—firm and strong. 
The palms of his hands are not soft and taken care of like most of the male models, they are rough and chapped. Hands of a man that actually uses them for a living. When they trace my skin, in the most innocent of touches, they make me shiver in delight and my insides clench. Awaiting.   
He can feel it. I know he can. I heard that bastard chuckle softly behind me.  
I can feel the heat of his body all around me, it’s radiating off of him, and sometimes, when he has to stand right behind me, I can feel his hot breath on my skin. 
We don’t say anything at all, we just do our job. But I can feel it. This something building between us.
Sexual tension. 
Lust. 
I never sleep with the same man twice, but something about him calls to me. 
Makes me want more. 
One more touch.
One more kiss.
One more night. 
Until this passion inside me is extinguished completely. 
 
EARLY REVIEWS
You’re hooked from the get go, two broken people find each other and boom! A spark is formed and you’re a goner. A love story, you’ll be thinking about long after the book is done.” – Socially Book Nerd
 
This is their story… it has secrets. It has hurt, betrayal and broken hearts. Determined to never feel. To never love. Until…..each other” – Emergency Book Blog
 
I loved this story. I was hooked and didn’t want to put it down. They both had baggage but in the end it made them grow closer together. What an amazing love story. Can’t wait for the next book.” – Jade
 
Captivating book about trusting yourself and finding love.” – Author Stephanie Gresham
 
You can read first two chapters for #free here: https://www.wattpad.com/myworks/133802210-until

What to know how it all started?
Lost & Found (New York Knights, book #1) 
One-click or read for free with KU! 

ON SALE FOR $0.99 FROM DEC 24 – JAN 4!

I don’t know what I want to do with my life. The only thing I am sure of is that this is not what I imagined my life to be. So, instead of staying and trying to figure out what is wrong, I choose to run away. I choose the unknown. I choose the adventure.
My name is Anabel Majer, and I’m lost.
 
What readers are saying about Lost & Found:
 
 What I really admired about this book was the romance. It wasn’t an immediate fall into bed and declare their love for each other. It was realistic, rough on the edges, and slow burning. This isn’t something you see often in the sports romance genre (at least I haven’t found many like this) and Lost & Found is unique with the pacing, the story line and the honesty between all of the characters.” – Ashley 
 
Anna B. Doe is an indie author of the contemporary romance novel Lost & Found and Until (coming January 2018). She has bachelor’s degree in Education Science and Spanish from University of Zadar. She works full time in an office and gives English and Spanish classes in her free time. When she’s not working for living or writing her newest book you can find her reading books, watching TV shows, or traveling the world. She is addicted to coffee and a big lover of dogs. Anna writes what she loves to read, which is romance. She is currently working on various projects. Some more secret than others. 

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Book Promo · Books · New Releases · Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesday: Until by Anna B. Doe

Forever Valentine PR and More is proud to partner with Anna B. Doe for this exclusive teaser of 
UNTIL (New York Knights, book #2)!
Title: Until
Series: New York Knights, book 2
Author: Anna B. Doe 
Genre: Contemporary Sports Romance
Cover Design: Emily Wittig, Emily Wittig Designs and Photography
Release Date: January 5th, 2018
 
Sign up to take part in the release blitz HERE
I was betrayed by those who I loved. Those who I believed in. It was the first and the last time I let myself love someone outside my family. A little girl grew up and opened her eyes. Love makes you weak. It makes you wish for the thing you can’t have. It makes you vulnerable, and I swore I will never again go down that path.
 
Until I met him—Jack Daniel Shelton. 
 
She left me. She ruined me. The day I found her gone I promised myself I’ll never let anyone have that kind of hold on me. Especially not a woman. Now she is back. No matter how much time has passed, no matter what I tell myself, her hold on me is still strong. There is also a secret she’s been keeping from me. A secret I can’t escape from, but a secret I can’t turn my back to either. A secret that could ruin everything I worked for.
 
And then, there is her—Sienna Roberts—everything was just as it was supposed to be. That is until she walked in my life. 
 
Can two souls that lost faith in love find it in one another?
What to know how it all started?
 
Lost & Found (New York Knights, book #1) 
One-click or read for free with KU! 
I don’t know what I want to do with my life. The only thing I am sure of is that this is not what I imagined my life to be. So, instead of staying and trying to figure out what is wrong, I choose to run away. I choose the unknown. I choose the adventure.
My name is Anabel Majer, and I’m lost.
 
What readers are saying about Lost & Found:
 
 “What I really admired about this book was the romance. It wasn’t an immediate fall into bed and declare their love for each other. It was realistic, rough on the edges, and slow burning. This isn’t something you see often in the sports romance genre (at least I haven’t found many like this) and Lost & Found is unique with the pacing, the story line and the honesty between all of the characters.” – Ashley 
 
Anna B. Doe is an indie author of the contemporary romance novel Lost & Found and Until (coming January 2018). She has bachelor’s degree in Education Science and Spanish from University of Zadar. She works full time in an office and gives English and Spanish classes in her free time. When she’s not working for living or writing her newest book you can find her reading books, watching TV shows, or traveling the world. She is addicted to coffee and a big lover of dogs. Anna writes what she loves to read, which is romance. She is currently working on various projects. Some more secret than others. 

 

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Book Review: 13 Minutes by Sarah Pinborough

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13 Minutes by Sarah Pinborough will be available for purchase on October 3, 2017.

Pre-order a copy through the links below:

 Amazon.com – 13 Minutes: A Novel by Sarah Pinborough


Barnesandnoble.com – 13 Minutes by Sarah Pinborough

Disclaimer: This book was sent to me by the publisher, Flatiron Books, via NetGalley for an honest review.

Genre: YA/Fiction/Mystery/Thriller

Plot: Natasha’s sure that her friends love her. But does that mean they didn’t try to kill her?

Natasha doesn’t remember how she ended up in the icy water that night, but she does know this—it wasn’t an accident, and she wasn’t suicidal. Her two closest friends are acting strangely, and Natasha turns to Becca, the best friend she dumped years before when she got popular, to help her figure out what happened.

They say you should keep your friends close and your enemies closer, but when you’re a teenage girl, it’s hard to tell them apart.

Opinion: *Sigh*…do you feel it guys? October is coming. Oooooh the leaves are beginning to fall; the air is starting to smell like brisk air and dying trees! Girls are buying pumpkin spice lattes, and those lovely goths and wickens are patiently waiting for Halloween. So here I am, giving the gift of words to put you in the mood of October…if you haven’t yet transitioned. A story with drownings, blindsides, almost decapitation (I’m exaggerating) and skanky girls!

AH! Nothing puts me in the holiday spirit quite like attempted/actual murder and scandal! Oooooo…spirit fingers!

It was a shock to everyone when the body of Natasha Howland was found washed up on an embankment, but an even bigger shock to find her alive. With no recollection of how she ended up in the water that night, Natasha tries desperately to find out what happened to her. With the return of her former best friend Becca, they work together to try and make sense of what the police have found out thus far. But with Natasha’s best friends Jenny and Haley acting strange, she begins to think that they might have something to do with what happened to her. Only time will tell what really happened that night, and only Natasha knows the truth.

I must say Ladies and Gents, this one will keep you guessing. This read will pull you in and keep you interested, in more ways than one! The obvious is the mystery of how poor Natasha ends up in the freezing water that night, which caused her to die for 13 minutes. But little does the reader know that s**t is about to get REAL. This book has it all! Some light drug use, a reenactment of Mean Girls, psycho girlfriends, stoners, adults behaving VERY badly, manipulation at its FINEST, and a dose of that good ol’ murder! Oh! Can you feel the tingles?! I sure can. I love a bundle of characters that makes me yell and curse out loud. I found myself rooting for every character at one point, but suddenly…everything began to shift. But just when I was about to shout “AAHHHHH HAH”, it all shifts AGAIN! These b****es are sneaky guys, very sneaky.

After Natasha wakes up in the hospital, the doctors report that she can’t remember the events that led up to her accident. We start to see her best friends, Haley and Jenny, acting strange and secretive, and Natasha even asks for Becca while in the hospital. This starts to feel as if everything is being set up and made too obvious from the very beginning, but thankfully that isn’t the case AT ALL. The author made sure to have the reader suspect each character for at least a moment, and I found myself being suspicious of EVERYONE. I couldn’t help but think the worst, but even I wasn’t thinking bad enough. I was NOT expecting any of these things to happen, and I loved it!

Characters. Well, to put it simply. Natasha is Queen Barbie for a reason, Becca is acutely annoying and desperate, Aiden is just a pansy, and Haley and Jenny are interesting…especially Jenny when she goes a little nutty. There are a few other characters who have some roles that I could mention, but they just don’t really seem to matter much (sorry guys). This story flips back and forth between Becca and Natasha, obviously our lead female characters in this story. Becca and Natasha used to be best friends, but Natasha dropped Becca a few years prior. Becca is considered a bit of a loner at school, while Natasha is in the popular crowd. She seems to have a decent head on her shoulders, meaning she doesn’t seem like the typical conceited popular girl. I started out favoring Becca, but halfway through the story that changed. As soon as Becca started acting needy and psycho, I just couldn’t stand her. The girl needed to CHECK herself. Pull in those emotions sweetheart, they’re all over the place!

Overall, this book really surprised me. I was expecting a flimsy YA read with some drama and overzealous characters, but what I got was so much more! I am so impressed with how this author was able to trick me so many times, and it kept me interested and reading. These characters are all VERY twisted and insane in their own way, but strangely normal at the same time. How the book unfolds itself is truly something special. I am SO glad I requested to read and review this one. Please keep in mind that this is for an older YA group of readers, as there is a lot of adult themes and situations that happen. This is not for a preteen! This is a great story to get you into the mystery/thriller stories as we get closer to Halloween, enjoy!

4-stars

 

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Book Review: A Face Like Glass by Francis Hardinge

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~ Buy through the links below ~

Amazon.com – A Face Like Glass by Francis Hardinge

Goodreads.com – A Face Like Glass by Francis Hardinge

Bookdeopsitory.com – A Face Like Glass by Francis Hardinge

Barnesandnoble.com – A Face Like Glass by Francis Hardinge

Disclaimer: This book was sent to me by the publisher, ABRAMS Kids, via NetGalley for an honest review.

Genre: YA/Fantasy/Science-Fiction

Plot: In the underground city of Caverna, the world’s most skilled craftsmen toil in the darkness to create delicacies beyond compare—wines that remove memories, cheeses that make you hallucinate, and perfumes that convince you to trust the wearer, even as they slit your throat. On the surface, the people of Caverna seem ordinary, except for one thing: their faces are as blank as untouched snow. Expressions must be learned, and only the famous Facesmiths can teach a person to express (or fake) joy, despair, or fear—at a steep price. Into this dark and distrustful world comes Neverfell, a girl with no memory of her past and a face so terrifying to those around her that she must wear a mask at all times. Neverfell’s expressions are as varied and dynamic as those of the most skilled Facesmiths, except hers are entirely genuine. And that makes her very dangerous indeed . . .

Opinion:

WHEW! Listen up guys, because this is one book that NEEDS to be noted and fawned over.

“It draws you in. You twist your mind into new shapes. You start to understand Caverna…and you fall in love with her. Imagine the most beautiful woman in the world, but with tunnels as her long, tangled, snake-like hair. Her skin is dappled in traplantern gold and velvety black, like a tropical frog. Her eyes are cavern lagoons, bottomless and full of hunger. When she smiles, she has diamonds and sapphires for teeth, thousands of them, needle-thin.”

-The Kleptomancer, A Face Like Glass

Neverfell’s story begins at the young age of five, when she is found by Cheesemaker Grandible after falling into a vat of his curdling Neverfell milk. After rescuing her and taking one look at the young girl, Grandible notices the differences in the young child, covers her face with a mask, takes her in and appoints her as his apprentice. After some seven years later, Neverfell is accustomed to her life as a cheesemaker. But unable to remove her mask around other people or to leave the cheese tunnels, she finds herself fighting a curiosity about what lays beyond. Soon Neverfell’s opportunity to leave the tunnels presents itself, and she gets her first look at the world that she has been hidden from. But her freedom is short lived when her mask falls from her face, and what lies beneath is shown to the people of Caverna. Neverfell, unlike the residents of Caverna, is able to make expressions on her own without having to be taught. As word travels of Neverfell, she becomes sold to the highest bidder. Caverna is flushed with experts in dangerous and strange delicacies, and murder is just another game for the members of the court. Pushed into a world where Neverfell finds trust in the wrong people, she struggles to find a way to protect herself and to recover the memories that she feels may be lost forever. But most importantly, to find a way out of Caverna.

Caverna. Woah. This place is seriously vicious guys. Do you remember reading The Hunger Games and being introduced to the strange people in the capitol? These people were insane and followed bizarre fashion trends that made them both appealing and frightening. Trust me when I say, the capitol has NOTHING on the court in Caverna. These people are PSYCHOTIC. They create wines that have minds and temperaments of their own, cheeses that can explode upon a slight bump, and strange foods that have creatures trapped inside gelatin. Not only do they spend all of their free time trying to poison rival families or hire assassins, but they are unable to make facial expressions on their own. The higher up in society and the better-off you are, the more “Faces” you are able to buy for yourself. People of a lower faction usually are unable to have 1 to 3 faces, depending on their job titles.

How to prepare the perfect Cardlespray Wine:

“One hundred and three years…The grapes spoil if they are exposed to loud noises, so they are tended by a silent order of monks, and all the local birds are killed. The fruit can be harvested only at night during the new moon, and must be crushed by the feet of orphans. The barrels are stored deep in the earth, and only the softest, sweetest music is played to them, continually, for over a century. And after all this, the Wine is fit to be drunk…unless somebody throws it over a table.”

-The Grand Steward, A Face Like Glass

Neverfell finds herself caught right in the middle of the chaos that is Caverna. The people of the court are all trying to get her hands on her for personal benefit, she cannot remember her past, and there is a strange person labeled “the Kleptomancer” running around Caverna stealing incredible objects with no apparent motive. I felt so horrible for young Neverfell throughout this story, and it was honestly staring to feel like something out of A Series of Unfortunate Events. Her innocence started to become her downfall, and it was heartbreaking to see her trust in so many people that proved to be using her in a game much larger than her. Her character grows a great deal in this story however, and I really enjoyed who she becomes. She still has her morals and good intentions, but acquires a cunning and righteous personality by the end of the story. Not only does Neverfell work to help herself be free of Caverna, but she fights to free those who have no voice at all.

The writing in this story is AMAZING, and I can’t wait to start reading other books by Frances Hardinge. She writes with an amazing creative and descriptive style, and it almost feels like poetry after a while. She PERFECTLY set the scene for Caverna as being a dark and curious place, one that can both thrill and kill a person. I thought the entire idea for having a civilization underground was amazing, but one where the characters aren’t able to make their own facial expressions? GENIUS! I seriously couldn’t get enough of this story, and I am wishing it was a full-blown 20 book series. This is one of those stories you wish would make it to the big screen because of how dazzling it looks in your head, but one you fear they will completely ruin…like they usually do.

All in all, I LOVE this story! I have nothing negative to say, not one thing. I can’t help but give this book 5 stars, which I hope will lead to many of you going and purchasing this story RIGHT AWAY. It is the perfect amount of fantasy and science-fiction, and a great read that will twist your mind into two. This book is suitable for all ages, but the youngest I would say is Teens because the writing could get a little confusing for a younger audience.

5-stars

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Book Review: Gardenia by Kelsey Sutton

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~ Buy through the links below ~

Amazon.com – Gardenia by Kelsey Sutton

Goodreads.com – Gardenia by Kelsey Sutton

Barnesandnoble.com – Gardenia by Kelsey Sutton

Bookdepository.com – Gardenia by Kelsey Sutton

Disclaimer: This book was sent to me by the publisher, Diversion Publishing, via NetGalley for an honest review.

Genre: Teen/YA/Mystery/Thriller

Plot: Ever since she was a child, Ivy has been able to see countdown clocks over everyone’s heads indicating how long before they will die. She can’t do anything about anyone else’s, nor can she do anything about her own, which will hit the zero hour before she even graduates high school.

A life cut short is tragic, but Ivy does her best to make the most of it. She struggles emotionally with her deep love for on-again, off-again boyfriend Myers Patripski. She struggles financially, working outside of school to help her mom and her sister. And she struggles to cope with the murder of her best friend, another life she couldn’t save. Vanessa Donovan was murdered in the woods, and everyone in town believes Ivy had something to do with it.

Then more girls start disappearing. Ivy tries to put her own life in order as she pieces together the truth of who ended Vanessa’s. To save lives, and for her own sanity.

The clock is always ticking. And Ivy’s only hope is to expose the truth before it runs out completely.

Opinion:

AHHHHH! THIS book! THIS FREAKING BOOK!

You are probably thinking to yourself Wow, WHAT about this book. WELL, LET ME TELL YOU ABOUT THIS BOOK! I have been searching high and low for a specific genre of story to read for WEEKS now. A story that will make my heart hurt and my stomach flip due to eloquent and depressing sentences. You know the kind of story I am talking about. The sort of tale that doesn’t just make you sorrowful, but a story that makes you MAKE yourself sorrowful because you don’t want to stop feeling what the characters feel.

Well, this story comes pretty close to that.

Call it a gift or a curse, but ever since Ivy was a child she knew when the people around her were going to die. The ability to see a countdown of each person’s remaining time over their heads has proved to be most difficult for Ivy, especially when her own death has been approaching quickly over the past few months. After the murder of her best friend, Ivy falls into a downward spiral as she realizes that she can’t save the people she loves. But the need to find out the truth about what happened begins to consume her, and soon Ivy finds herself on the trail to figuring out who the murderer is. As Ivy’s last weeks begin to draw near, she fights to live her final days instead of just watching them tick by.

I can’t express enough how much I loved the concept for this story. Ivy is forced to watch the people around her die as their life clock comes to an end, while feeling helpless the entire time because she has no way to save them. I felt like I had a truly strong connection to this character. She is a loner at school and made to feel like an outcast because of events from her past, but she has a snarky attitude and is quick to fire off amazing zingers. When first introduced to Ivy, the reader quickly learns that there is a sense that she has already given up in life. With the death of her best friend being so recent and her own clock only being a few months before ending, Ivy has an overwhelming sense of despair and sorrow engulfing her. She has nobody close to her that she can talk to, and her family is very distant and wrapped up in their own lives.

As the story progresses, Ivy starts to become obsessed with finding out who killed her friend and why. In regards to the mystery aspect of this story, I was pretty surprised to figure out who it was. I had about one or two main suspects that I thought had definitely done it, but I was pleasantly surprised to have been wrong. The point where this story starts to get truly heart wrenching, apart from the already depressing events, is when the reader learns about Myers. Myers is the ex-boyfriend of Ivy, and let’s just say that relationship ended horribly on a night when everything else shattered Ivy’s world. I found that this author EXCELS when she is describing a sorrowful or dark moment. Not many authors know how to capture a feeling in words, and I thought Kelsey Sutton did a great job of it. This story is riddled with amazing descriptions of sadness and regret, and I adored every single minute of it.

Even after he’s gone I let my fingers linger on the glass, until the cold creeps under my skin and into my bones. Maybe if it goes deep enough, it will numb everything.

As numb as death.”

-Ivy

Overall, this was a TRULY wonderful read. I was hooked the entire time and felt connected to the characters and the story throughout the read. I am excited to see what else this author has done. If her writing is as good as this in all of her stories, then she is going to become a favorite of mine quickly. I recommend his to all ages, but primarily Teen and YA readers. It has a strong message of finding acceptance and living your life to the fullest, which I think anyone can relate to.

4-5-stars

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Book Reviews · Books · New Releases · Reviews

Book Review: Flicker and Mist by Mary G. Thompson

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Disclaimer: This ARC copy was sent to me by the publisher, Clarion Books, via NetGalley for an honest review.

Genre: YA/Fantasy

Plot: Romance, intrigue, and plenty of action are woven into a rich and suspenseful narrative in this powerful YA fantasy. The mixed-race heroine Myra is a Flickerkin and can flicker (become invisible) at will. She hasn’t cultivated or revealed this ability, since Flickerkin are persecuted as potential criminals and spies. When invisible people become tricksters and then murderers, Myra’s Flickerkin heritage becomes a deadly secret, putting her relationship with the leader’s son—and her own life—in jeopardy. Loyalties shift and difficult choices are made before Myra understands who she wants to be.

Opinion: Oh hello, HELLO first review of 2017! Let’s start the year out with a nice review of a wonderful YA Fantasy story, complete with prejudices of people who can turn invisible and a world where segregation is number 1! WHEW! Positivity!

Having the Ability should have been fun, in another world, a child who could become invisible might play pranks on her parents, might sneak around with friends, might go ride the beasts in the dead of night. In another world, the Ability might have brought freedom and joy. But I was born in another world, I was born in the Upland, where the Ability was used as a weapon of war.

Myra, Flicker and Mist

One night after waking from a terrible nightmare at the age of 5, unable to see herself or be seen by her family, Myra learns that she can Flicker. Years before her existence, Myra learns of a race called Flicker Men had come to the island of Upland and bred with the Lefties who reside in the Left Eye; which in turn created a sub-race called the Flickerkin. Once a war began and the Flicker Men fled, this new sub-race of the Flicker Men discovered that they had inherited the gift of being able to become invisible, or as they call it “flicker”. From then on Lefties (pale, short and curvaceous) and Flickerkin are put into the Left Eye to be “contained”, while the Plats (dark skinned, tall and thin) are to live in New Heart City as the dominant race. For a Leftie to enter New Heart City, they are subjected to taking a painful test to ensure that they do not have the Ability. Somehow, Myra’s mother was able to enter New Heart City even though she is Flickerkin. With the threat of being thrown to the Waters for judgment, Myra is forced to never flicker again. Now much older, Myra and her fellow residents of New Heart City discover a threat of Flickerkin among them. Myra must fight to keep her secret hidden, and fight to protect those around her.

I was very VERY excited to be approved for this read via Netgalley (thanks Calrion Books), mostly because I have always had a dire yearning to possess the superpower of invisibility. *Sigh*…the thought of it makes my toes tingle with giddiness! ANYWAYS, this story is stuffed and gorged with tons of interesting elements to pull any reader in. Fantasy and romance, adventure and unruly segregation…it’s all here! I was so intrigued by the world that this author created, and I loved the positive and negative elements that made up the island of Upland. The history of the Flicker Men coming to the Island was touched on, but I would have enjoyed a better understanding of who these people were. I think some flashbacks or stories about the past would have been beneficial to the story, and would have given the race of Flickerkin more depth. The elements of Plats riding beasts in a competition against others was really interesting, and I would have LOVED to have read more and more about this. Thought the reader is given a few scenes where the plats and beasts are battling it out in a race, again…I need more background and history about the competition and the importance of it.

The characters fell a little flat for me, especially that of Myra. As our main strong female lead, I needed more personality and character from her…well…character. I didn’t connect with Myra as strongly as I would have liked, especially in a story that has such a creative world as this. She felt very one-dimensional to me. Developed, but not developed in a way where there would have been tears coming down my face if her or someone she loved perished in front of her. If I am reading a story that is written in 1st person point-of-view, then I want to feel like I am inside that character’s head and seeing things through their eyes. I need to know this character as if I AM them, not as if I am looking at them and observing them.

Though I think the author could have taken this creative world a step further, I think this story still turned out to be highly enjoyable. It seems that if a fantasy story isn’t as detailed and elaborate as one like Throne of Glass or Lord of the Rings, then readers seem to push it away and deem it incomplete. I actually really enjoyed this story and what the author offered, because sometimes a book that doesn’t go on and on in detail is a nice change. I recommend this to any of you YA/Fantasy lovers out there. It is something DIFFERENT and entertaining, which is what we are all looking for anyways right? Though I have my qualms with not getting enough background on some things, it is still a book that you can get lost it and love.

3 Stars

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