Binding of Bindings · Book Promo · Books · New Releases · Pre-order · Upcoming Releases

Binding of Bindings #22: My Top 10 Anticipated July Book Releases

Do you hear that…?
Someone’s knocking

I think it’s July book releases.
Sent up from the depths of Hell to drag you into a deep, dark, black abyss of book obsessions and character addictions.
So…what do we do?

 

We help them into the damn tower, of course!

 

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~* My 10 Anticipated July Book Releases *~

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1. The Best Lies by Sarah Lyu
Release Date: July 2, 2019
Genre: YA/Contemporary/Mystery

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I am starting this beautiful babe tonight, and I cannot wait!

The Best Lies is about a girl named Remy who had an amazing life, until her best friend Elise shot her boyfriend.

Devastated and shocked, Remy sifts through her memories to find ANY plausible explanation for what happened. The story showcases toxic relationships, jealousy and revenge, and is said to be a Thelma and Louise meets Gone girl psychological thriller!

 

2. The Beckoning Shadow (Book 1) by Katharyn Blair
Release Date: July 2, 2019
Genre: YA/Fantasy

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This book has AMAZING reviews all over Goodreads already, and with a cover and plot like this, I’m simply not surprised.

The Beckoning Shadow follows Vesper (sick name, right?) has the ability to summon one’s worst nightmares and make them real, but her unique power has lead her down a road of regret. So when she is thrust into the Tournament of the Unraveling to compete for a chance to rewrite the past, she desperately works to win with the help of Sam Hardy – a former MMA fighter with a past just as tragic.

 

3. Season of the Witch (The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, Book 1) by Sarah Rees Brennan
Release Date: July 9, 2019
Genre: YA/Fantasy/Horror

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*Commence the obnoxiously loud fan-girl screams*

I KNOW!

THIS. Is ACTUALLY. HAPPENING!!!!!

Season of the Witch is a prequel to the Netflix series The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, and documents the summer before we all meet her. This is the summer that she and Harvey first get together, but she isn’t sure of Harvey’s feelings for her. By her cousin Ambrose’s suggestion, Sabrina performs a spell, but it backfires.

From the reviews I have read, it would be a good idea to watch the first season of the show before you read this. It might give some spoilers away if you haven’t seen the show yet, and who wants that?!

Obviously, I am SUPER excited for this release. My witchy heart can barely contain itself!!

 

4. Wilder Girls by Rory Power
Release Date: July 29 2019
Genre: YA/Horror/Mystery/LGBT

Wilder Girls

This is probably the third or fourth time I have posted about this book, but can you blame me?

You can’t.

Wilder Girls is the private school meets fast-spreading virus meets feminist vibes story that you obviously just need. A virus breaks out at a private school located on an island, and three girls are forced to fight for their lives as it spreads. Reviewers are describing it as a Feminist Lord of the Flies.

Intrigued?

Of course you are.

 

5. Heartwood Box by Ann Aguirre
Release Date: July 9, 2019
Genre: YA/Mystery/Thriller

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Heartwood Box is a dark romantic YA Mystery that follows Araceli (again with the cool names) as she is sent to live with her great-aunt in a Victorian home. But this new town isn’t as quaint and normal as Araceli expected. There are countless “missing” posters everywhere, a creepy lab on the outskirts of town nobody talks about, and her aunt is a little…unhinged.

The mysterious conspiracies may commence now.

 

6. Vox by Christina Dalcher
Release Date: July 16, 2019
Genre: Fiction/Feminism/Science Fiction

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If you’ve got a hardcore addiction for The Handmaid’s Tale, because you like your heart being ripped out each week – Read THIS!

I started it a few days ago and let me just tell you…

…it’s f***ed.

Vox is a re-release Dystopian Feminist story set in America where women are only allotted a total of 100 words to speak in a day. Similar to The Handmaid’s Tale, slowly women are stripped of their rights, and thrust into bracelets that counts their words and gives them electric shocks if they exceed their limit.

To make it worse, female children are given these bracelets too and never taught to read or write.

This book is told from Dr. Jean McClellan’s point of view, and it is…hard to read.

*Sigh* my heart!

 

7. The Phantom Forest by Liz Kerin
Release Date: July 16, 2019
Genre: YA/Fantasy

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The Phantom Forest is a story for every Underworld loving creature of the night out there!

The Forest of Laida is the most holy place of the Underworld, and each tree houses a soul that is able to return to the mortal world for another life. But when Seycia’s (seriously, THE NAMES!) father is killed and she is chosen as a human sacrifice, she is thrust into the Underworld to protect her family.

I received this from Netgalley (you can still get a copy) and I am SO stoked to get it started!

 

8. Before I disappear by Danielle Stinson
Release Date: July 23, 2019
Genre: YA/Fantasy

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Before I Disappear is a story about every soul in a town disappearing into thin air, except for five teens.

Rose arrived in Fort Glory, Oregon to start a new life with her family, but everything changes when they suddenly vanish. Now she is trapped in the Fold with four other teens – a place in the woods that is somewhere between the real world and the lost town – and everyone is starting to turn deadly.

This has Stephen King vibes all over it…DOWN!

 

9. The Merciful Crow (Book 1) by Margaret Owen
Release Date: July 30, 2019
Genre: YA/Fantasy

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THIS looks like it is going to be a BIG winner for fans of Six of Crows, so get your wallets out kids.

The Merciful Crow is set in a world that follows a caste system, and main character Fie belongs to the Crowsundertakers and murderers who are paid to collect the dead. But when Fie is sent on a job she knows will pay big, things turn for the worst when it comes to light that her target, Prince Jasimir and his bodygaurd, have faked their deaths in order to prevent his Kingdom from siege.

I mean…look.

Just take my money.

 

10. The Surface Breaks by Louise O’Neill
Release Date: July 30, 2019
Genre: YA/Fantasy/Retelling/Feminism

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Another re-release, but another book you will be happy to get your hands on!

The Surface Breaks is a Little Mermaid Retelling (try not to scream) set off the Irish coast. Gaia is the most prized daughter of the Sea King, but dreams of escaping her fathers control. Living in a world where only the beautiful are kept, and the ugly or deformed are banished, Gaia wants nothing more than to be free. And so upon her first swim to the surface, she is captivated by a human boy, who she is prepared to sacrifice everything for.

This book is a FEMINIST version of the tale we know and love, and is said to be a dark and emotional version that is going to strike some serious feels.

Sign me up!

 

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Let me know what books you are planning to read this July, or what upcoming releases you’re DYING over!
My TBR list is already going to follow me into the afterlife, so might as well throw a few more on top.
As always my lovely beauties – Stay Witchy! ❤

 

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Book Promo · Books · New Releases · Takeover Tour · The Parliament House Press

Takeover Tour: Quinsey Wolfe’s Glass Vault (Glass Vault, Book 1) by Candace Robinson

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Publisher: The Parliament House
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Book Title: Quinsey Wolfe’s Glass Vault
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Series: Glass Vault, Book 1
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Author: Candace Robinson
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~*~ Takeover Tour ~*~

I have teamed up with The Parliament House Press for the Takeover Tour and Release Day of Quinsey Wolfe’s Glass Vault, a YA Fantasy Horror dripping in spooky fairy0tale elements!

It’s the first in the Glass Vault series and described as a gruesome, dark and twisted tale. Perfect for horror fans who love a bit of magic and romance!

~Click here to purchase a copy!~

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There is also a GIVEAWAY for a chance to win an E-Book of Quinsey Wolfe’s Glass Vault!
Head over to my Bookstagram to enter! ❤
@JenacideByBibliophile

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Book Synopsis

Some see it… Some don’t…

People in the town of Deer Park, Texas are vanishing. There is a strange museum, known as Quinsey Wolfe’s Glass Vault, that appears overnight. Perrie Madeline’s best friend and ex-boyfriend are among the missing. Perrie and her friend August go on a pursuit for them in the mysterious museum. Could the elusive Quinsey Wolfe’s Glass Vault have anything to do with the disappearances?

Quinsey Wolfe’s Glass Vault is the start of a thrilling duology full of magic, danger, and romance.

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Social Media Tags:
Instagram: @literarydust , @theparliamentpress
Twitter: @literarydust , @Parliamentbooks
Facebook: Candace Robinson – Literary Dust , The Parliament House
Website: http://authorcandacerobinson.wordpress.com

 

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Binding of Bindings · Book Promo · Books

Binding of Bindings #21: The Vain Post (2) – 10 Books You’ll Buy for the Cover

Just because we were vain LAST week, doesn’t mean we can’t be vain THIS week too!
These books are pretty, popular and oh so perfect!

Get some superficial in yuh, boys and girls!
Because who ever said too much ego in a book relationship was a BAD thing?!

I sure didn’t.

 

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~* Another Vain Post *~

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1. The Cerulean by Amy Ewing

The Cerulean

The Cerulean is the story of Sera, who is one of the Cerulean, a people who live in the City Above the Sky. Sera wants nothing more than the tether between her world and the world below to be broken, and one day she is given the opportunity – she must jump off the edge of her world and sacrifice herself, in order to save her city.

But instead of dying, she lands in Kaolin.

 

2. Beautiful Broken Girls by Kim Savage

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Beautiful Broken Girls is a YA Contemporary Mystery that is both beautiful and haunting.

After her Death, Mira Cillo leaves behind notes in seven places where her and Ben touched. Each note will lead Ben closer to why Mira and her sister drowned themselves in the quarry. But the notes link Ben to his dark past with an inappropriate coach who took advantage of him, as well as the complicated and twisted tale of the two sisters.

 

3. Ice and Embers by Melanie Karsak

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Aren’t these covers AMAZING?!

My eyes!

Melanie Karsak has a series of Steampunk Fairy Tale Retellings, and this is one of the many gorgeous books from the collection!

Ice and Embers is a Retelling of the Snow Queen and is set in 1814 London, during the Frost Fair. It follows Elyse, an actress who is madly in love with a Lord named John Waldengrave, but is told to keep their affair a secret. But her best friend Kai doesn’t trust John, and so entails a story of mystery as Elyse begins to discover the truth about the men in her life.

 

4. Golden Braids and Dragon Blades by Melanie Karsak

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Golden Braids and Dragon Blades (amazing title, right?) is a Rapunzel Retelling about a girl named Rapunzel who has spent her entire life living in Merlin’s cave, with only her dragons and visits from Mother to keep her company. But when a young man happens upon the cave, Rapunzel is forced to decide if he can be trusted.

Soon their destinies entwine and they are brisked away on an adventure in a London Steampunk world.

 

5. Curiouser and Curiouser by Melanie Karsak

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THIS Alice Retelling sounds AMAZING!

Curiouser and Curiouser It is set in a seedy, dark and gloomy version of a Steampunk London where Alice spends most of her time surrounded by thieves and criminals. But when a heist is presented to Alice to steal a diamond from the Queen, she is forced to accept in order to save the man she once loved: the Hatter.

 

6. A Certain Slant of Light (Light, Book 1) by Laura Whitecomb

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A Certain Slant of Light is a Paranormal Romance of a ghost girl named Helen who has been haunting her way through the death for nearly 130 years, going by unnoticed and unseen. But it isn’t until Helen is haunting a high school English teacher’s class that she is finally noticed. By a boy who is alive, and can see her.

Usually these paranormal ghost romances are flipped, where the girl is living and the boy is dead. So I already love the idea of the roles being switched.

 

7. The Light Between Worlds by Laura E. Weymouth

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The Light Between Worlds is a Historical Fiction YA Fantasy that follows Evelyn and Philippa Hapwell as they were transported to a magical realm called the Woodlands, and then taken back to London. For Ev, she wants nothing more that to return to Woodland. But Philippa thrives in the real world, and moves to America in order to forget Woodland.

But when Evelyn goes missing, Philippa is forced to relive the past in order to save her sister.

 

8. Entwined by Heather Dixon

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ANOTHER Retelling!

If you guys have been excited for House of Salt and Sorrows like I have, then hopefully you have read this OR are now going to.

Just like House of Salt and Sorrows, Entwined is a Retelling of the Twelve Dancing Sisters that centers on Azalea, the eldest of her sisters who is now in charge due to the death of their mother and their father going off to war. Confined in the palace for a year, the sisters soon come across a passage that leads them to the Silver Forest and The Keeper.

The Keeper invites the girls to come and dance, whenever they shall please, but things are much more sinister and dark than they seem.

9. The Soul Thief (The Horizon Chronicles, Book 1) by Kim Richardson

The Soul Thief

The Soul Thief is a Paranormal Fantasy about a girl named Alexa who is dead, and then recruited to the Guardian Angel Legion – a group of angels who protect mortal souls from demons.

It is said to be PERFECT for fans of The Mortal Instruments and The Dark Artifices…so you know.

It’s perfect for all of US.

 

10. Given to the Sea (Given Duet, Book 1) by Mindy McGinnis

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Given to the Sea is a YA Fantasy set in the Kingdom of Stille where a young woman named Khosa is to be sacrificed to the Sea, just like her mother and her mother’s mother were before her. But before she is able to fulfill her purpose, she must produce an heir to follow in her footsteps. But Khosa can’t stand the touch of anyone that isn’t an Indiri. But the arrival of Vincent, who is to inherit the Stille throne, Vincent is torn between duty and this mysterious girl.

 

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Until next week my dears, stay Witchy

 

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Binding of Bindings · Books · Netgalley · New Releases · Reviews · Wrap-Up

Binding of Bindings #20: May Book Wrap-Up

Wait.
Where did the time go?!
It can’t be June ALREADY!
Can it?!
But…
…where did MAY go?!

 

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~* May Book Wrap-Up *~

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1. Drowning by Margaret McHeyzer
Drowning

Drowning is about a girl named Ivy who has been cutting for years, but has kept it hidden from her friends and family. There is a demon in her head that tells her to cut and hurt herself, and more times than not, she isn’t able to fight him off. But when a young man named Tobias enters the picture, Ivy wonders if it’s finally time to let the truth be known.

As I had said in my review, the intent for this book was solid, but the execution was lacking and cringe-worthy.

The author was SO focused on stuffing this book with hot topics (self-harm, sexual abuse, school shootings, homophobia, codependency, suicide, schizophrenia) that she forgot to focus on the character development.

I’m all for talking about important topics, but the way the author shoved all of this into one book felt so exaggerated and unbelievable. There was no connection to the characters, they were vapid and boring, and I just wasn’t impressed with this book.

2-stars

(See my review here)

 

2. The Unrepentant by E.A. Aymar

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I was VERY excited to start The Unrepentant, which was gifted to me from JKS Communications in exchange for an honest review.

Unfortunately, it was a DNF for me.

But trust me when I say, it had NOTHING to do with the writing style, the characters or the plot! The subject matter in this story is REALLY heavy. You will need thick skin to read it, and even then, I’d be surprised if it was easy for you to get through this book.

It is the story of a girl named Charlotte who is on the run from the gang that kidnapped and forced her into a life of sex trafficking and physical abuse. She is rescued by a man named Mace that happens upon her and her kidnappers in the woods, and the story follows the two as they flee.

WARNING: This is an ADULT book and depicts graphic sexual content, rape and violence.

This book has phenomenal reviews on Goodreads, so if you think you are up for it, I would really recommend this book. It has a powerful message and the first half that I read was really amazing.

 

3. Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas
4. Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas

Yes.

This is my third time reading TOG.

Yes.

It is STILL hurting my heart.

I am taking my time reading these books again, since I am reading them in between every other book I have on my list.

*Sigh*

The series begins with 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien being dragged from the hard labor prison of Endovier, to the Crown Prince of Adarlan. She is to be the Prince’s champion in a competition to win the title of Adarlan’s Assassin, in exchange for her freedom after a few years of service.

If you haven’t read the books yet, YOU MUST!

They are action-packed, romantic beyond belief, full of magic and will make you sob all night long.

Do it, you know you want to.

 

5. Stolen by Marlena Frank

Stolen

Stolen is a YA Fantasy with Alice in Wonderland, The Wizard of Oz and Labyrinth themes throughout.

It follows main character and sixteen-year-old Shaleigh Mallet as she is kidnapped and taken into another world filled with mystical creatures and magic. There is an evil “Queen” residing over a garden, a cowardly lion, a rat-boy creature driving a flying bike…sound familiar? In this new land, Shaleigh must prove to the court that she is the reincarnation of a powerful magician that once ruled the land.

A very cute and wonderful world, but one that I was feeling a tad bored in. The pacing was a smidge slow, and I didn’t have a huge connection to any of the characters. I might suggest this book for a younger audience. Very enjoyable, but a little too simple for me.

3-stars

(See my review here)

 

6. The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer

THIS BOOK!!!!!!

Still wondering how and WHY I waited SO long to begin this series!

Mara Dyer wakes in the hospital after a fatal accident that claimed the lives of her best friend, her boyfriend and another friend. Unable to remember the events of the accident, or to cope with her loss, Mara convinces her family to move. Once in Miami, Florida Mara tries to transition into life at her new school. But two students tormenting her, unwanted attention from the mysterious Noah Shaw, and daily hallucinations of her dead friends slowly put Mara over the edge.

I LOVED reading this.

The characters are incredibly molded and so amusing! The banter is witty and sarcastic, and I spent most of my time reading this laughing out loud or with a stupid smile plastered on my face.

Once you can get past Noah‘s initial asshat-ness, the romance is wonderful and sweet and OH SO swoonworthy. I am currently reading book two in the series, and really enjoying it!

(See my review here)

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May was cool, but I definitely need to up my reading for June. I am currently 9 books behind in my Goodreads reading challenge (trying to get to 100), and if I want to get back on track…I need to light a fire under my cauldron and get to cookin’.

As always my dear and wonderful readers, stay witchy! ❤

 

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Book Promo · Book Reviews · Books · Reviews

Book Review: The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin

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Genre: YA/Fantasy/Romance

Plot:

Mara Dyer believes life can’t get any stranger than waking up in a hospital with no memory of how she got there.

It Can.

She believes there must be more to the accident she can’t remember that killed her friends and left her strangely unharmed.

There is.

She doesn’t believe that after everything she’s been through, she can fall in love.

She’s wrong.

Opinion:

To say this book sank it’s mushy, dreamy, lovely and jagged death claws into me, would be a vast understatement.

I INHALED this book.

Praise Satan I had books two and three sitting on standby!

Why…did I wait SO long to read this?

When Mara wakes up in the hospital, she learns three very important things. 1. She was in an accident. 2. Her friends didn’t survive. 3. She has no idea what happened. With the death of her best friend looming over her, Mara convinces her family to up and move to escape the memory of the person she will never see again. Just a few months after the accident, Mara starts at a knew school in Miami, Florida in the hopes that she can put the past behind her. But seeing hallucinations of your dead friends and hearing their voices can’t be normal, right? With the two cruel students named Anna and Aiden tormenting her, and the unwanted attention from the gorgeous boy with a bad reputation, Mara is barely holding on to her sanity. Strange things are happening around Mara Dyer. Is she going crazy? Or is there something dark lurking beneath the surface, waiting to get out?

With a plot description like the one on the back of this book, no wonder it took me so long to read this.

Talk about VAGUE.

But when I FINALLY started reading The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer, I was gripped.

Overcome.

Slapped in the face, strapped down and injected with synthetic UHDICTION.

This. Book. Kills.

Pun intended.

What really seals the deal for me on this book isn’t the mushy love story though. It isn’t the mysterious plot that you don’t start figuring out until 70ish% in (and even so, barely), and it isn’t the well-developed characters. It’s the WRITING. I have never laughed out loud SO much at a book, as I have with this. Whether it was witty comebacks, smart and sassy banter, or truly quirky and accurate depictions of personalities – I was giggling, yelling and screaming SO many French MontanaHA’s” that I’m surprised nobody called the cops to 5150 me.

My face is in a state of agony this morning due to the constant smirks and smiles that were lighting up my face.

I don’t smile, okay?

It hurts.

But when there’s a twelve-year-old boy texting stock tips and getting numbers to “network”, you can’t help but grin through the pain. Mara’s youngest brother Joseph is a DOLL! He is bursting at the seams with personality and gumption, and he doesn’t even have a big role in this book! But it seems that every character Mara comes into contact with, whose role is big or small, is rounded and developed REALLY well. This author just knows how to capture the essence of people, to describe their quirks and charms in such few words, and I am so thankful for that.

Let’s get into the good stuff though, shall we?

Mara and Noah.

Noah and Mara.

So dreamy right?

Ehh…WRONG. Noah starts this story out as a MAJOR asshat. He is aggressive, rude, dismissive, demanding, and tells our main female character to shut up regularly. Swoon? NO! NOT SWOON! He’s a prick. But of course, as we women do, we make exceptions for his crappy behavior and forget it all when he starts being sweet to us.

So anyways, he does get nicer

Though I couldn’t STAND his and Mara’s moments of possessive and objectifying statements of “I was his” and “You’re mine”, their romance actually was very sweet and caring. Noah turns out to be a fiercely loyal and caring character (maybe a little too fierce at times), and I was enjoying the slow-build of their relationship that felt honest and true. These two characters play off each other SO WELL. Their relentless banter and bickering is SO enjoyable to read. They never cease their attempts in riling the other up, or making filthy innuendos and snarky comments. I was loving it!

For me though, Mara is the character who really shines in this story. As she should! The reader is whisked into a whirlwind of emotions with Mara. Is she sane? Is she crazy? Maybe she’s just grieving. But every moment of embarrassment, anger, sadness, annoyance, or look of distrust she is given from her mother – you feel it. Any girl will be able to connect with this character in some way. We have all been in similar situations that can mirror Mara’s time in high school, especially when it comes to awkward encounters with students or love.  

But my ramblings aside, I was SO hooked and into this book! I read it in 6 hours, and thankfully had books two and three on standby so I could immediately begin devouring those. The plot definitely went in a direction I wasn’t expecting (thanks book description) but I can’t say that I am at all unhappy with it. The story is taking it’s time to unravel, and I have a feeling I haven’t even dipped my toes into the reality of what these characters will be going through.

You need to read this series.

But buy all the books at once, your addictive personality will thank you.

4-5-stars

 

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Blog Tour · Book Promo · Books · New Releases · Takeover Tour · The Parliament House Press

Takeover Tour: She’s Powerful Trouble by Taylor Hartley

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Publisher: The Parliament House
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Book Title: She’s Powerful Trouble
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Series: The Foul & Fair Series (Book #1)
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Author: Taylor Hartley
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~*~ Takeover Tour ~*~

I have teamed up with The Parliament House Press for the Takeover Tour and Release Day of She’s Powerful Trouble, the first book in The Foul & Fair series!

The series is the story of a young witch whose power brings about death, and a young man in the depths of drug abuse and self-destruction. It is a YA Fantasy packed with magic, romance and turmoil!

~Click here to purchase a copy!~

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There is also a GIVEAWAY for a chance to win an E-Book of She’s Powerful Trouble!
Head over to me Bookstagram to enter! ❤
@JenacideByBibliophile

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Book Synopsis

The Mothers of Mariah Stark’s Coven insist she possesses an evil power. Mariah’s attempts to pull flowers from the Earth or heal injuries result in killing fields of crops and scorching flesh instead. Called away by a prophecy, the young witch learns she must cloak her magic to protect her Sisters and their secret. But despite her best efforts, Mariah fails at maintaining a low profile in Wicker Creek, North Carolina. Now, as Mariah navigates her senior year of high school, vicious town darling Shelley Stallings and her minions seek to reveal Mariah for the witch they believe her to be. Such exposure could ruin the magical world—if Mariah doesn’t destroy it first.

While Finn Shepherd may not have magical powers, he’s on his own path to self-destruction. Struggling to cope with his father’s death, he abandons his passions for swimming and sketching and seeks solace in drugs, pissing away his chances at graphic design school as he lashes out at the people who love him most. His tunnel-vision blinds him—so he never sees Mariah coming.

What follows is a cycle of fated encounters. Mariah’s powers soften as she grows closer to Finn, and she wonders: is he destined to save her from her ravenous inner darkness? And Mariah reminds Finn of who he used to be and the future he might pursue. But as Shelley relentlessly taunts Mariah, the dark side of her magic takes on a mind of its own…threatening anyone in its wake and driving Mariah to a choice that might unleash a force strong enough to shatter both the magical and ordinary worlds…

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Social Media Tags:
Instagram: @authorthartley , @theparliamentpress
Twitter: @authorthartley , @Parliamentbooks
Facebook:  The Parliament House
Website: https://www.authorthartley.com/

 

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Book Promo · Book Reviews · Books · New Releases · Release Blitz · The Parliament House Press

Book Review: Stolen (Book 1) by Marlena Frank

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Disclaimer: This book was sent to me by the publisher, The Parliament House Press,  for an honest review. 

Genre: YA/Fantasy

Plot: It’s difficult taking care of a delusional father by yourself. Sixteen-year-old Shaleigh Mallet would rather explore and photograph dilapidated buildings than cater to her father’s dark episodes. But when she’s kidnapped by a creature who carries her atop a flying bicycle into another world, she realizes this wasn’t the escape she wanted.

In a kingdom known as the Garden, where minotaurs pull carriages and parties are held in hot air balloons, Madam Cloom and her faerie servant, Teagan, rule over the land with incredible but terrifying magic. Shaleigh must prove that she is the reincarnation of a long-dead ruler, not because she believes it, but because it’s her only chance to survive. With the help of a trespassing faerie, a stoatling, and a living statue, Shaleigh hopes to outwit everyone. She aims to break the bonds of servitude and finally make her way home. What she doesn’t realize, however, is that she’s playing right into the hands of a far worse enemy…

Opinion:

I feel as if I’ve just fallen off a Yellow Brick Road into a Rabbit Hole.

Downdowndown

…into the dark depths of h

HAH, kidding.

It’s more like the magical depths of WonderOzRinth.

This author is clever.

While reading Stolen I got INSTANT vibes of Alice in Wonderland and The Wizard of Oz. A rat-boy creature driving a flying bike through the sky, a garden with an evil “Queen”, a cowardly lion, and a main character with the last name Mallet. Hmmm…something makes me think this book is FULL of little Easter eggs!

Though I loved the world building, writing and direction this author took the story, I was having a hard time getting through it.

Though there was an even pace throughout Stolen, it was a slow pace that seemed to drag on and on without a lot happening. Due to this being the first book in the series, I imagine this might be the grand setup for what is to come. But even so, I was expecting a little more turmoil and pizzazz! I wanted more examples of strange mythical creatures or examples of the differences between this world and the human realm. The writing was flawless and the author succeeded in describing details of the world intricately, but I wanted to know MORE about the world Shaleigh fell into. I felt like I was given a great TASTE of the magic and uniqueness of this place, but wasn’t fully enveloped in it.

I wanted to drown in it, not just stick my toes in.

I would have liked to connect to the characters more, because they came off as one-dimensional with not a lot of substance. Shaleigh started out as a unique character with an affinity for taking photos in decrepit abandoned buildings. I thought this was such a RANDOM attribute for a character, but one I instantly loved and connected with. But as the story progressed, I felt as if she was just in the background of the book, even though she’s the main character. She doesn’t seem that surprised/scared/in awe of this new world she was dropped into. Why? I would be FREAKING out!

I was also a bit unclear of ages of everyone, except Shaleigh. I know this doesn’t seem like it would be a big deal, but when I have little basis of how old a character is, it takes away from the intent of their dialogue and I am left feeling confused. My human nature wants to predict a love interest or friend/foe from the beginning, and I need ages and more descriptions of body language to do that. Out of everyone, I think Mawr and Colin were the most developed and likable characters, but we unfortunately don’t get a whole lot of time with them.

All in all, this story is a great read…even if I had a few qualms with it. The writing is PERFECTION and it transported me to a new world that feels familiar to my heart. It may not have gotten my heart rate up or made me overly obsessed with the characters, but I would be very interested to see where this series goes. The author left the book in a place where she can go several ways with the plot, and I am very curious as to how she will spin everything together.

I’d recommend it to anyone with a love for Alice in Wonderland, The Wizard of Oz or Labyrinth.

With that said…

 

3-stars

 

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