What's this? Finally, a new blog post?

Yes, I realize I kind of disappeared between now and the month of July but I promise you all that I am back. If only reading slumps didn't exist. . . *sighs*

Although it is still August, the leaves still green, and the temperatures occasionally in highs that should not exist for the sake of every human being, September is right around the corner and with it, we have got a horde of new books being released *cries happy tears*. Putting aside the inner turmoil that bubbles up whenever I think about when and where I'm going to find time to read all of these wonderful novels (college. . . it's a struggle), I'm excited to share with you all my top 5 book releases for the fall!


1. Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas (Pub. Date: September 1, 2015) Summary Preorder

Also known as the book that will slay my life (and hopelessly vulnerable feels) into an inevitable existential crisis, this book is my most highly anticipated release of the year and it finally comes out in a week . . . A WEEK GUYS. Gone will be the days of endless, impatient waiting and dodging spoilers and upon us will be tear stained pages while reuniting with our favorite characters, soon followed by that glorious feeling we all know and love: The Book Hangover. . . bring on the ice cream and Netflix. I'm so ready to dive back into this wonderful world and follow Aelin as she, at last, returns to Adarlan, a land governed by a cruel king that has stolen everything that has ever mattered to her and kick. some. long. deserved. butt. (keeping it PG for the children)





2. Shades of Doon by Carey Corp and Lorie Langdon (Pub. Date: September 1, 2015) Summary Preorder


Only one more week until we get to welcome this little one into our home and continue on our adventure with our beloved Duncan, Jamie and the "BFFLATINMWKOSWGOIN"  (Translation: Best Friends For Life And To Infinity No Matter What Kind Of Shenanigans We Get Ourselves Into Next) duo we've grown to love, Veronica and McKenna. The third and FINAL book of The Doon Trilogy is (almost) finally here and I'm so excited to pick this one up and find out how everything resolves itself . . . especially after that last cliffhanger *glares*. If you love all things Scotland as well as mysterious magical worlds with gorgeous princes named Jamie (Not Fraser but equally as dreamy), then the tantalizing world of Doon should definitely be next on your vacation to-go list.




3. Vengeance Road by Erin Bowman (Pub. Date: September 1, 2015) Summary Preorder



Would you believe it if I told you that this is the third book coming out on the first of September? Well, you better because it's TRUE. . . I can already hear my wallet sobbing. Normally, I don't find myself drawn to westerns nor do I have much experience within that specific reading genre but after reading several chapter teasers and learning more about some of the characters, I can say that this book has certainly earned its way onto this list. I'm so excited to further explore the wild west alongside our kickass heroine, Kate, as she explores the secrets of her family's past.






4. Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo (Pub. Date: September 29, 2015) Summary Preorder


This book. . . I'm so hopelessly excited for this one that it feels like any day now I'm just going to find myself spontaneously bursting out into song. Adding to the already wonderful line up of September releases, I'm so pleased to say we've got more GRISHA coming our way! *coughs* And no, that Rhyme was completely unintentional. I can barely contain my excitement to delve back into Leigh's beautiful world that I've so dearly missed since Ruin and Rising brought an end to the fantastic Grisha Trilogy *gently sobs in a corner for Nikolai*. As we find ourselves back in the world where it all began, we get introduced to a new set of characters and some troublemakers. . .who doesn't love a little mischief?






5. Winter by Marissa Meyer (Pub. Date: November 10, 2015) Summary Preorder



AND OF COURSE, this list would not be complete without including the final book of the Lunar Chronicles, Winter, which is coming out in less than three months *heavy breathing*. Although I have a bizarre fear of traveling to the moon (you seriously couldn't pay me a million dollars to go there, not in this lifetime), I'm willing to make an exception for this one. It's been far too long since I've read a book involving cyborg mechanics, lost princesses/kidnapped princes, and epic space battles but lucky for us, the wait is almost over! Did I mention it's over 800+ pages? I can't wait to get back to reading what Marissa has in store for  Cinder and the gang as well as getting better acquainted with the newest addition, Princess Winter.





Hope all of you enjoyed this post and let me know what books you're looking forward to this fall!


xoxo,
Jana

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Find me everywhere... well, that's not creepy.









Top 5 Books You Need to Have on Your Radar for Fall 2015

August 24, 2015




What's this? Finally, a new blog post?

Yes, I realize I kind of disappeared between now and the month of July but I promise you all that I am back. If only reading slumps didn't exist. . . *sighs*

Although it is still August, the leaves still green, and the temperatures occasionally in highs that should not exist for the sake of every human being, September is right around the corner and with it, we have got a horde of new books being released *cries happy tears*. Putting aside the inner turmoil that bubbles up whenever I think about when and where I'm going to find time to read all of these wonderful novels (college. . . it's a struggle), I'm excited to share with you all my top 5 book releases for the fall!


1. Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas (Pub. Date: September 1, 2015) Summary Preorder

Also known as the book that will slay my life (and hopelessly vulnerable feels) into an inevitable existential crisis, this book is my most highly anticipated release of the year and it finally comes out in a week . . . A WEEK GUYS. Gone will be the days of endless, impatient waiting and dodging spoilers and upon us will be tear stained pages while reuniting with our favorite characters, soon followed by that glorious feeling we all know and love: The Book Hangover. . . bring on the ice cream and Netflix. I'm so ready to dive back into this wonderful world and follow Aelin as she, at last, returns to Adarlan, a land governed by a cruel king that has stolen everything that has ever mattered to her and kick. some. long. deserved. butt. (keeping it PG for the children)





2. Shades of Doon by Carey Corp and Lorie Langdon (Pub. Date: September 1, 2015) Summary Preorder


Only one more week until we get to welcome this little one into our home and continue on our adventure with our beloved Duncan, Jamie and the "BFFLATINMWKOSWGOIN"  (Translation: Best Friends For Life And To Infinity No Matter What Kind Of Shenanigans We Get Ourselves Into Next) duo we've grown to love, Veronica and McKenna. The third and FINAL book of The Doon Trilogy is (almost) finally here and I'm so excited to pick this one up and find out how everything resolves itself . . . especially after that last cliffhanger *glares*. If you love all things Scotland as well as mysterious magical worlds with gorgeous princes named Jamie (Not Fraser but equally as dreamy), then the tantalizing world of Doon should definitely be next on your vacation to-go list.




3. Vengeance Road by Erin Bowman (Pub. Date: September 1, 2015) Summary Preorder



Would you believe it if I told you that this is the third book coming out on the first of September? Well, you better because it's TRUE. . . I can already hear my wallet sobbing. Normally, I don't find myself drawn to westerns nor do I have much experience within that specific reading genre but after reading several chapter teasers and learning more about some of the characters, I can say that this book has certainly earned its way onto this list. I'm so excited to further explore the wild west alongside our kickass heroine, Kate, as she explores the secrets of her family's past.






4. Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo (Pub. Date: September 29, 2015) Summary Preorder


This book. . . I'm so hopelessly excited for this one that it feels like any day now I'm just going to find myself spontaneously bursting out into song. Adding to the already wonderful line up of September releases, I'm so pleased to say we've got more GRISHA coming our way! *coughs* And no, that Rhyme was completely unintentional. I can barely contain my excitement to delve back into Leigh's beautiful world that I've so dearly missed since Ruin and Rising brought an end to the fantastic Grisha Trilogy *gently sobs in a corner for Nikolai*. As we find ourselves back in the world where it all began, we get introduced to a new set of characters and some troublemakers. . .who doesn't love a little mischief?






5. Winter by Marissa Meyer (Pub. Date: November 10, 2015) Summary Preorder



AND OF COURSE, this list would not be complete without including the final book of the Lunar Chronicles, Winter, which is coming out in less than three months *heavy breathing*. Although I have a bizarre fear of traveling to the moon (you seriously couldn't pay me a million dollars to go there, not in this lifetime), I'm willing to make an exception for this one. It's been far too long since I've read a book involving cyborg mechanics, lost princesses/kidnapped princes, and epic space battles but lucky for us, the wait is almost over! Did I mention it's over 800+ pages? I can't wait to get back to reading what Marissa has in store for  Cinder and the gang as well as getting better acquainted with the newest addition, Princess Winter.





Hope all of you enjoyed this post and let me know what books you're looking forward to this fall!


xoxo,
Jana

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Find me on Goodreads
Find me on Bloglovin
Find me everywhere... well, that's not creepy.













Publication Date: January 5, 2016
Publisher: Tor Books
Pages: 416
Preorder: Barnes and Noble, Amazon 

I've been sitting at my computer for probably several hours (more like days) writing and rewriting this review because I simply cannot accurately enough put into words the whirlwind of emotions I feel about this book *coughs* I blame Merik. This book has left me speechless in the absolute best way and I'm so excited for what's to come in the future of the series. Susan takes on a whole new level of epicness in this book and it's so exquisite and engaging that I've been singing "A Pirates Life for Me" for three days straight now (which is bizarre in itself because this book deals with witches not pirates...I don't even know ).

Now, before I get into how much I loved this book, I want to explain how I'm going about this review. This review will be what I like to categorize as a "Short, Sweet, and to the Point Review". Not because I didn't enjoy this book but because we are still several months from it's official release day *coughs* January 5, 2016 *coughs* and therefore, a majority of the human population has not yet read this book. I can assure you one hundred percent that once this baby hits the shelves on, mark your calendars, January 5, 2016, I will have a full fledged, spoiler-full, incoherent fangirl rambling review ready to go because writing this, non-spoilery review in which I can't say much without actually spoiling all of you is killing me. As a natural born fangirl at heart, it's in my nature to want to track down the nearest living thing to me within a one mile radius and gush about my latest, favorite read. Unfortunately, for my dog at least, that means my poor helpless little Nelly is the target of most of my initial and raw fangirl ramblings...I'm so sorry.

So, yes, I will have two reviews for this book. This one simply just being a more subdued and spoiler free version of the one that I will be putting up on, January 5, 2016...I pinky promise.

With that being said, let us get into the review!

So, a while back in my post on "Why you should read Truthwitch", I had said and claimed many things about this book, one of them being that this book will "knock your socks off". Needless to say, I started this book wearing my favorite pair of fuzzy socks and now they are no where to be found and to this day, I have been *sheds a tear* Sockless...thanks Susan.

After having read this book, I realized that even the summary for this book doesn't do justice to how much of a compelling and intriguing world Susan's created. But, for those of you that forgot or just need a little reminder, I leave you with the Goodread's summary,


On a continent ruled by three empires, some are born with a “witchery”, a magical skill that sets them apart from others.
In the Witchlands, there are almost as many types of magic as there are ways to get in trouble—as two desperate young women know all too well.
Safiya is a Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lie. It’s a powerful magic that many would kill to have on their side, especially amongst the nobility to which Safi was born. So Safi must keep her gift hidden, lest she be used as a pawn in the struggle between empires.
Iseult, a Threadwitch, can see the invisible ties that bind and entangle the lives around her—but she cannot see the bonds that touch her own heart. Her unlikely friendship with Safi has taken her from life as an outcast into one of reckless adventure, where she is a cool, wary balance to Safi’s hotheaded impulsiveness.
Safi and Iseult just want to be free to live their own lives, but war is coming to the Witchlands. With the help of the cunning Prince Merik (a Windwitch and ship’s captain) and the hindrance of a Bloodwitch bent on revenge, the friends must fight emperors, princes, and mercenaries alike, who will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.


Overall Thoughts
Where, oh where to begin...

I rarely get myself into a hype over books that have not even come out, yet alone, the first book in a new series but I found this book to be one of those rare exceptions. I was so excited for this book that I was part of that stampede/mob/whatever you wish to call it at BEA this year, for one of the lucky 100 golden tickets (they actually were a yellow-gold color) to receive an arc of Truthwitch. Moral of that story, I was fortunate enough to get a ticket and meet Susan (Who is absolutely lovely and wonderful in person) and this book was completely worth braving the mob/stampede for. I LOVE this book. From the magnificent world building, to the wild and diverse ensemble of characters, to the non-stop heart pounding, adrenaline inducing action and adventurous, staccato roller coaster of feels that is this book, it was such fun ride from start to finish. Once the ball gets rolling in this book, there's no stopping it and, thinking back on it now, I don't think I managed to take a single breath while reading this book. *inhales deeply*
The Characters

Susan's characters in this book are so wonderfully constructed and so well balanced, even the baddest of the bad characters in this book will capture your heart... well, some of them. Each of the characters we are introduced to in this world is tested, and for some, pushed to his/her limits. I loved the interaction between all of them and how eventually all of their story arcs combined in a stormy, heart racing crescendo in the end.

Our two leading heroines, Iseult and Safiya (whom I connect to on a spiritual level when it comes to my math skills), embody everything you look for in strong main protagonists. Each has her own strengths and weaknesses, which we get to know as we go further into the story, but together...oh my god, these two are absolutely (for lack of a better word) badass. Seriously, I was either laughing (oh goodness, the SASS runs strong with these two), deeply concerned for their well being, or clinging on to this book with a death grip as if it were the only thing keeping me from falling off of my bed. The friendship between these two is something one of a kind and at a level of which I have only come across very few times. This book definitely tests the bond between these two but even in the bleakest and darkest of moments in this book, they find their back the same way they've always done things, together. I cannot remember the last time I had so much fun reading about a character but I guarantee, as soon as you meet them, you'll love these two just as much as I do.

Another wonderful thing about the characters in this book was the diversity. Aside from the characters having a wide array of traits and witcheries, this cast certainly has its share of diverse characters. Susan definitely does not shy away from or sugar coat any discrimination one of her characters, Iseult, faces as a result of her looking "different". I found it absolutely heart breaking to see and hear about how she was treated and how she'd have to go to measures in public just to avoid being called out. Even with the harsh reality of it, I'm excited to see her prove to everyone just how wrong they were and to meet more of the diverse characters in this world.

The best part of this book, you ask? Probably the fact that this book has an entire ARMADA of hot, brooding men that will, for some quite literally, blow you away *swoons*. To get all the warm and fuzzy details, you'll just have to wait and read the book... yes, I went there but I'm just going to warn you here and now, to make some room in your archives/vaults/closets/rooms/etc. for several new favorite characters because this book has a lot of them coming your way.
The World
Oh goodness, I'll be honest, while I wouldn't necessarily find myself wanting to permanently live in this world, I would not mind taking a day trip...or ten and spending the day with some very attractive witches (I'm batting my eyelashes at you Merik ).
As can be expecting with any high-fantasy novel, the world building aspect of the book is an important part in understanding how this new realm we are introduced to functions. It's also one of those things that, while fascinating once you get the hang of it, can also make you cringe when you think about it. It's not something that comes easily, to both reader and author, and can easily become overwhelming. You have to allow yourself to adapt to the world and learn the ropes and ways of the trade. There's an integral political aspect in this book that has already and may further affect, the lives of these characters in future books and how this society that they live in affects the choices they make. Learning all of this is not something that just happens overnight or, in this case, a couple of pages. This book does a great job of slowly introducing you into the world without boring you or leaving you completely lost in its slew of high fantasy elements. There were moments where I found myself having to reread a page or paragraph several times to firmly get a grip on what was happening in a scene but it definitely was not a hindrance on my overall reading experience for this book. I absolutely loved the world this book was set in and once I was comfortable with it and grew more familiar with some of the common vernacular, it was an absolute blast and speedy, heart pounding race to the end. It truly left me awe-struck at certain moments and with a strange desire to go and live out the rest of my days as a pirate... of the nice variety of course. 

I realize that this book isn't set to be published for another seven months but I promise you that this book is without a doubt worth the wait. From the moment you set your eyes on the opening chapter, this book will grab you by the hands and take you on a journey so great no ride at Disney World will ever compare

Be sure to tell me in the comments what you're most excited for in this book!


Xoxo,
Jana

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Truthwitch by Susan Dennard

June 3, 2015





Publication Date: January 5, 2016
Publisher: Tor Books
Pages: 416
Preorder: Barnes and Noble, Amazon 

I've been sitting at my computer for probably several hours (more like days) writing and rewriting this review because I simply cannot accurately enough put into words the whirlwind of emotions I feel about this book *coughs* I blame Merik. This book has left me speechless in the absolute best way and I'm so excited for what's to come in the future of the series. Susan takes on a whole new level of epicness in this book and it's so exquisite and engaging that I've been singing "A Pirates Life for Me" for three days straight now (which is bizarre in itself because this book deals with witches not pirates...I don't even know ).

Now, before I get into how much I loved this book, I want to explain how I'm going about this review. This review will be what I like to categorize as a "Short, Sweet, and to the Point Review". Not because I didn't enjoy this book but because we are still several months from it's official release day *coughs* January 5, 2016 *coughs* and therefore, a majority of the human population has not yet read this book. I can assure you one hundred percent that once this baby hits the shelves on, mark your calendars, January 5, 2016, I will have a full fledged, spoiler-full, incoherent fangirl rambling review ready to go because writing this, non-spoilery review in which I can't say much without actually spoiling all of you is killing me. As a natural born fangirl at heart, it's in my nature to want to track down the nearest living thing to me within a one mile radius and gush about my latest, favorite read. Unfortunately, for my dog at least, that means my poor helpless little Nelly is the target of most of my initial and raw fangirl ramblings...I'm so sorry.

So, yes, I will have two reviews for this book. This one simply just being a more subdued and spoiler free version of the one that I will be putting up on, January 5, 2016...I pinky promise.

With that being said, let us get into the review!

So, a while back in my post on "Why you should read Truthwitch", I had said and claimed many things about this book, one of them being that this book will "knock your socks off". Needless to say, I started this book wearing my favorite pair of fuzzy socks and now they are no where to be found and to this day, I have been *sheds a tear* Sockless...thanks Susan.

After having read this book, I realized that even the summary for this book doesn't do justice to how much of a compelling and intriguing world Susan's created. But, for those of you that forgot or just need a little reminder, I leave you with the Goodread's summary,


On a continent ruled by three empires, some are born with a “witchery”, a magical skill that sets them apart from others.
In the Witchlands, there are almost as many types of magic as there are ways to get in trouble—as two desperate young women know all too well.
Safiya is a Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lie. It’s a powerful magic that many would kill to have on their side, especially amongst the nobility to which Safi was born. So Safi must keep her gift hidden, lest she be used as a pawn in the struggle between empires.
Iseult, a Threadwitch, can see the invisible ties that bind and entangle the lives around her—but she cannot see the bonds that touch her own heart. Her unlikely friendship with Safi has taken her from life as an outcast into one of reckless adventure, where she is a cool, wary balance to Safi’s hotheaded impulsiveness.
Safi and Iseult just want to be free to live their own lives, but war is coming to the Witchlands. With the help of the cunning Prince Merik (a Windwitch and ship’s captain) and the hindrance of a Bloodwitch bent on revenge, the friends must fight emperors, princes, and mercenaries alike, who will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.


Overall Thoughts
Where, oh where to begin...

I rarely get myself into a hype over books that have not even come out, yet alone, the first book in a new series but I found this book to be one of those rare exceptions. I was so excited for this book that I was part of that stampede/mob/whatever you wish to call it at BEA this year, for one of the lucky 100 golden tickets (they actually were a yellow-gold color) to receive an arc of Truthwitch. Moral of that story, I was fortunate enough to get a ticket and meet Susan (Who is absolutely lovely and wonderful in person) and this book was completely worth braving the mob/stampede for. I LOVE this book. From the magnificent world building, to the wild and diverse ensemble of characters, to the non-stop heart pounding, adrenaline inducing action and adventurous, staccato roller coaster of feels that is this book, it was such fun ride from start to finish. Once the ball gets rolling in this book, there's no stopping it and, thinking back on it now, I don't think I managed to take a single breath while reading this book. *inhales deeply*
The Characters

Susan's characters in this book are so wonderfully constructed and so well balanced, even the baddest of the bad characters in this book will capture your heart... well, some of them. Each of the characters we are introduced to in this world is tested, and for some, pushed to his/her limits. I loved the interaction between all of them and how eventually all of their story arcs combined in a stormy, heart racing crescendo in the end.

Our two leading heroines, Iseult and Safiya (whom I connect to on a spiritual level when it comes to my math skills), embody everything you look for in strong main protagonists. Each has her own strengths and weaknesses, which we get to know as we go further into the story, but together...oh my god, these two are absolutely (for lack of a better word) badass. Seriously, I was either laughing (oh goodness, the SASS runs strong with these two), deeply concerned for their well being, or clinging on to this book with a death grip as if it were the only thing keeping me from falling off of my bed. The friendship between these two is something one of a kind and at a level of which I have only come across very few times. This book definitely tests the bond between these two but even in the bleakest and darkest of moments in this book, they find their back the same way they've always done things, together. I cannot remember the last time I had so much fun reading about a character but I guarantee, as soon as you meet them, you'll love these two just as much as I do.

Another wonderful thing about the characters in this book was the diversity. Aside from the characters having a wide array of traits and witcheries, this cast certainly has its share of diverse characters. Susan definitely does not shy away from or sugar coat any discrimination one of her characters, Iseult, faces as a result of her looking "different". I found it absolutely heart breaking to see and hear about how she was treated and how she'd have to go to measures in public just to avoid being called out. Even with the harsh reality of it, I'm excited to see her prove to everyone just how wrong they were and to meet more of the diverse characters in this world.

The best part of this book, you ask? Probably the fact that this book has an entire ARMADA of hot, brooding men that will, for some quite literally, blow you away *swoons*. To get all the warm and fuzzy details, you'll just have to wait and read the book... yes, I went there but I'm just going to warn you here and now, to make some room in your archives/vaults/closets/rooms/etc. for several new favorite characters because this book has a lot of them coming your way.
The World
Oh goodness, I'll be honest, while I wouldn't necessarily find myself wanting to permanently live in this world, I would not mind taking a day trip...or ten and spending the day with some very attractive witches (I'm batting my eyelashes at you Merik ).
As can be expecting with any high-fantasy novel, the world building aspect of the book is an important part in understanding how this new realm we are introduced to functions. It's also one of those things that, while fascinating once you get the hang of it, can also make you cringe when you think about it. It's not something that comes easily, to both reader and author, and can easily become overwhelming. You have to allow yourself to adapt to the world and learn the ropes and ways of the trade. There's an integral political aspect in this book that has already and may further affect, the lives of these characters in future books and how this society that they live in affects the choices they make. Learning all of this is not something that just happens overnight or, in this case, a couple of pages. This book does a great job of slowly introducing you into the world without boring you or leaving you completely lost in its slew of high fantasy elements. There were moments where I found myself having to reread a page or paragraph several times to firmly get a grip on what was happening in a scene but it definitely was not a hindrance on my overall reading experience for this book. I absolutely loved the world this book was set in and once I was comfortable with it and grew more familiar with some of the common vernacular, it was an absolute blast and speedy, heart pounding race to the end. It truly left me awe-struck at certain moments and with a strange desire to go and live out the rest of my days as a pirate... of the nice variety of course. 

I realize that this book isn't set to be published for another seven months but I promise you that this book is without a doubt worth the wait. From the moment you set your eyes on the opening chapter, this book will grab you by the hands and take you on a journey so great no ride at Disney World will ever compare

Be sure to tell me in the comments what you're most excited for in this book!


Xoxo,
Jana

Find me on twitter
Find me on tumblr
Find me on Goodreads
Find me everywhere... well, that's not creepy

\




Warning: I am writing this in full blown fangirl mode...So, if you don't think you can handle my ramblings, feel free to leave. If you think you can handle it....you've been warned




Flails, Wails, and Fairytales.

BY.THE.CAULDRON. . . yup, that pretty much sums up my feelings for this book because OH MAN, the Queen has come and the Queen has delivered to us, yet again, a story of cosmic-sized EPICNESS that cannot and will not supersede, in its importance, anything else in this universe. Food? Nope. Water? You're kidding me right? But what about your dog, the pride and joy of your existence that loves you unconditionally?...ehh.... considering I'm willing to sell my limbs for book two...sorry Nelly *sheds tear*

So, as you may have gathered, Sarah is a literary genius.. nope, more like GODDESS. Having read Sarah's other series Throne of Glass, I was not worried at all that this book would not meet my expectations. In fact, I think my expectations were still way too low because I was expecting a nuclear bomb and instead, I got the Big Bang. I have devoured (not literally of course) and loved all of her preceding books and knew that I was going to love this one as well. With her amazing knack for kickass female protagonists and breath taking world building, I had no doubt that this book was going to end up being one of if not THE favorite book of 2015.

Now, before I get into my thoughts, reactions, and all the hot guys because, let's be real, a majority of the reason we love her books is because of all the hot guys littering the pages *swoons*, as per usual, I'll provide you with a summary

When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution for it. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin—one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled their world.
As she dwells on his estate, her feelings for Tamlin transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie and warning she's been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But an ancient, wicked shadow grows over the faerie lands, and Feyre must find a way to stop it . . . or doom Tamlin—and his world—forever.


My initial reactions while reading this book went somewhat along the lines of this:  lots of squealing that (according to my lovely family) sounded like a piglet in distress, crying...of course, heart palpitations, sweating, and decreases in breathing with bits of hyperventilation in between. In other words, I was dying at the hands of this book and I DID NOT CARE ONE BIT. THIS book....I don't even think I can put into words how much I loved this book but let me just tell you, if you have any hesitation about picking up this book, throw them out the window. This book is like a box of chocolates; once you dig in, you won't be able to stop.

Characters

Now, let's start with the characters. One of my favorite things about all of Sarah's books and especially this one is how she writes and constructs her characters. You can always find them to be multifaceted and well-constructed with so many layers, they'd have no qualms about staying warm in the winter. Several times, I have come across books that have everything in them the book needs to be great but when it comes to the characters, it just falls flat. Either they're too two-dimensional or just have unrealistic traits that make them difficult to relate to. I don't mean if there's magic in the world and the character has an affinity for power with fire, water, etc. and he/she can do a lot of badass stuff with that power. I'm talking about writing mundane characters that have extraordinary things happening to them and then, as if overnight and not with much character development (and I do love me some character development), they suddenly throw everything that makes them who they are out the window and become a completely different person without any effort or work contributing to that change. But that was not at all the case in this book. The characters were flawed and imperfect. Feyre, whom I LOVED, made mistakes, took frustrating courses of action that we knew would most likely lead to no good, and in the beginning, only thought about her own self interest. However, she used everything she learned from those mistakes, to grow into the character we have at the end of the book and that, ladies and gentlemen, is a little something I like to call character development. It made the characters that much more real and three dimensional and allowed you to connect with them. That connection to the characters, as readers, is what draws us to care for them, to cry so hard when something bad happens to them that our faces look like we got attacked by a swarm of bees and makes us want to delve deeper into their character and know what happens next. The same goes for her other characters *coughs* the men *coughs*. I could honestly go on for days as to why I loved Tamlin, Lucien, and Rhys and how perfect they are but in truth, what made me love them as much as I do (and I really REALLY do ) was how perfectly imperfect they were and the balance between their own strengths and weaknesses. There's a realness to them (overlooking the fact that they're, you know, gorgeous immortal beings with magical powers, abs so chiseled you could crack a nut on them and pointy ears). You feel like you can relate and therefore have an easier time putting yourself in their shoes and experiencing almost first hand what the character is going through without putting your life in any actual danger...yay?

With that little rant being over, in short, Sarah has yet again managed to create a fantastic ensemble of characters that you will laugh, cry, swoon (definitely SWOON) , scream, and wail in frustration to protect over. *goes and cries*



The World
*cries some more* This book left me hanging with one big question; Why can't I write like Sarah J. Maas? This is not the first time I have asked myself this question nor will it be the last (you can quote me on that).The world of ACOTAR, just like any of her other previous works, is so dynamic and beautifully built that I kind of want to pack my bags and go live in the Spring Court right this very minute and never look back. Who needs reality when you can spend the rest of your days surrounded by very hot Fae warriors, right? Sarah's characteristic world building is probably most accurately compared to that of a spider web. From afar, it might seem like just another fantasy world with it's fair share of monsters and the heroes and heroines that slay them, just another spider web, discreetly chilling in the corner of the barn (Any barn not just the one from Charlotte's Web). As you examine it closer, however, you realize the incredible attention to detail and intricate weaving that took place to create this breath-taking world.
The Conclusion
Now normally I wouldn't designate a specific section just for the conclusion of the story (don't worry, no spoilers) but as I simply cannot control myself, I must. This ending...YOU GUYS, had my heart practically leaping out of my chest. Now, the "ending ending" was surprisingly happy. I was left feeling very satisfied where the characters had left off but not enough to not make me want the second book in my hand the moment I put ACOTAR down. There are many, many questions I have about certain characters and of course, the usual curiosity, what's going to happen now? Who is this King and is he by any chance related to that monster in Adarlan (I think we all know the answer to that but the want to kill innocent people runs strong with these two...they probably exchange notes).

But that's not the "ending" I wanted to mention to you guys. I meant that whole thing that happened right before that ending. That huge, and I mean the "Oh my god, the world could open up into a sinkhole of oblivion beneath me and I still would not notice anything going awry because I am so enthralled with this epic (and brutal) scene" HUGE, showdown between Feyre and one of the most cruel characters Sarah has ever written (yes, it was that intense). I actually had to put the book down and count backwards from ten several times just to calm myself down. It was riveting and intense and it absolutely shattered my heart into itty-bitty pieces that left me with not just a broken heart but a terrible mess that I had to clean up afterwards.

Thanks Sarah.
The Mythology
This book is actually a retelling of one of my all time favorite childhood stories, Beauty and the Beast, and I loved the way it was done.The storylines between the original Beauty and the Beast mingles so well and flows smoothly with this new realm that we are introduced to in A Court of Thorns and Roses. The story is unique and different with sprinkles of similarities here and there.

 As we get further enveloped in the story, we see the connections as well as the differences between the two. How the masks that are worn in the Spring Court allude to a certain curse upon the characters in BatB or Belle's love for reading while our main character, Feyre, because of the impoverished state that she had been raised in for most of her life and her lack of a proper education, often finds herself frustrated with her illiteracy and eventually, almost costs Feyre her life.

Another thing I loved about this book and it's mythology is its interesting take on the Courts. Instead of the usual two courts, Seelie and Unseelie, we find ourselves surrounded by multiple courts: Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter, Dawn, Night, and Day court (Did I miss any?). Each is as different as Night and Day but all part of a complex system that makes up the world of Prythian and I'm so excited to dive deeper into the world and explore the other courts. In this story we mainly focus on the Spring Court where our beautiful and beloved Tamlin and Co. reside but we do getting subtle glimpses into other courts *coughs* night court *coughs*. And by glimpses, I mean, we are informed about the various courts but Sarah has confirmed we do get to visit the night court in the second book *cue confetti canons*

Final Thoughts

 After weeks of trying to write this review (yes, it has taken me forever) and do justice to just how much I loved this book, I've finally managed to come some what close. Overall, this book was like taking a bath with every single bath bomb out there in one sitting: Fun, colorful, and messy (BECAUSE OF THE TEARS AND HEART ACHE). I thoroughly loved and enjoyed this book and can't wait to see what's in store for us in book two.

 I recommend this book to anyone and anything, if your new or old, living or an inanimate object. If your plant wants to read it but doesn't know how, do the world a good deed, and read this book to your plant. Share it with the world and spread the ACOTAR love as we all now eagerly await the second book.

xoxo,
Jana

Get ACOTAR on amazon, book depository, Barnes and Noble

Find me on twitter
Find me on tumblr
Find me on Goodreads
Find me everywhere...well, that's not creepy






A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

May 26, 2015




Warning: I am writing this in full blown fangirl mode...So, if you don't think you can handle my ramblings, feel free to leave. If you think you can handle it....you've been warned




Flails, Wails, and Fairytales.

BY.THE.CAULDRON. . . yup, that pretty much sums up my feelings for this book because OH MAN, the Queen has come and the Queen has delivered to us, yet again, a story of cosmic-sized EPICNESS that cannot and will not supersede, in its importance, anything else in this universe. Food? Nope. Water? You're kidding me right? But what about your dog, the pride and joy of your existence that loves you unconditionally?...ehh.... considering I'm willing to sell my limbs for book two...sorry Nelly *sheds tear*

So, as you may have gathered, Sarah is a literary genius.. nope, more like GODDESS. Having read Sarah's other series Throne of Glass, I was not worried at all that this book would not meet my expectations. In fact, I think my expectations were still way too low because I was expecting a nuclear bomb and instead, I got the Big Bang. I have devoured (not literally of course) and loved all of her preceding books and knew that I was going to love this one as well. With her amazing knack for kickass female protagonists and breath taking world building, I had no doubt that this book was going to end up being one of if not THE favorite book of 2015.

Now, before I get into my thoughts, reactions, and all the hot guys because, let's be real, a majority of the reason we love her books is because of all the hot guys littering the pages *swoons*, as per usual, I'll provide you with a summary

When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution for it. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin—one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled their world.
As she dwells on his estate, her feelings for Tamlin transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie and warning she's been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But an ancient, wicked shadow grows over the faerie lands, and Feyre must find a way to stop it . . . or doom Tamlin—and his world—forever.


My initial reactions while reading this book went somewhat along the lines of this:  lots of squealing that (according to my lovely family) sounded like a piglet in distress, crying...of course, heart palpitations, sweating, and decreases in breathing with bits of hyperventilation in between. In other words, I was dying at the hands of this book and I DID NOT CARE ONE BIT. THIS book....I don't even think I can put into words how much I loved this book but let me just tell you, if you have any hesitation about picking up this book, throw them out the window. This book is like a box of chocolates; once you dig in, you won't be able to stop.

Characters

Now, let's start with the characters. One of my favorite things about all of Sarah's books and especially this one is how she writes and constructs her characters. You can always find them to be multifaceted and well-constructed with so many layers, they'd have no qualms about staying warm in the winter. Several times, I have come across books that have everything in them the book needs to be great but when it comes to the characters, it just falls flat. Either they're too two-dimensional or just have unrealistic traits that make them difficult to relate to. I don't mean if there's magic in the world and the character has an affinity for power with fire, water, etc. and he/she can do a lot of badass stuff with that power. I'm talking about writing mundane characters that have extraordinary things happening to them and then, as if overnight and not with much character development (and I do love me some character development), they suddenly throw everything that makes them who they are out the window and become a completely different person without any effort or work contributing to that change. But that was not at all the case in this book. The characters were flawed and imperfect. Feyre, whom I LOVED, made mistakes, took frustrating courses of action that we knew would most likely lead to no good, and in the beginning, only thought about her own self interest. However, she used everything she learned from those mistakes, to grow into the character we have at the end of the book and that, ladies and gentlemen, is a little something I like to call character development. It made the characters that much more real and three dimensional and allowed you to connect with them. That connection to the characters, as readers, is what draws us to care for them, to cry so hard when something bad happens to them that our faces look like we got attacked by a swarm of bees and makes us want to delve deeper into their character and know what happens next. The same goes for her other characters *coughs* the men *coughs*. I could honestly go on for days as to why I loved Tamlin, Lucien, and Rhys and how perfect they are but in truth, what made me love them as much as I do (and I really REALLY do ) was how perfectly imperfect they were and the balance between their own strengths and weaknesses. There's a realness to them (overlooking the fact that they're, you know, gorgeous immortal beings with magical powers, abs so chiseled you could crack a nut on them and pointy ears). You feel like you can relate and therefore have an easier time putting yourself in their shoes and experiencing almost first hand what the character is going through without putting your life in any actual danger...yay?

With that little rant being over, in short, Sarah has yet again managed to create a fantastic ensemble of characters that you will laugh, cry, swoon (definitely SWOON) , scream, and wail in frustration to protect over. *goes and cries*



The World
*cries some more* This book left me hanging with one big question; Why can't I write like Sarah J. Maas? This is not the first time I have asked myself this question nor will it be the last (you can quote me on that).The world of ACOTAR, just like any of her other previous works, is so dynamic and beautifully built that I kind of want to pack my bags and go live in the Spring Court right this very minute and never look back. Who needs reality when you can spend the rest of your days surrounded by very hot Fae warriors, right? Sarah's characteristic world building is probably most accurately compared to that of a spider web. From afar, it might seem like just another fantasy world with it's fair share of monsters and the heroes and heroines that slay them, just another spider web, discreetly chilling in the corner of the barn (Any barn not just the one from Charlotte's Web). As you examine it closer, however, you realize the incredible attention to detail and intricate weaving that took place to create this breath-taking world.
The Conclusion
Now normally I wouldn't designate a specific section just for the conclusion of the story (don't worry, no spoilers) but as I simply cannot control myself, I must. This ending...YOU GUYS, had my heart practically leaping out of my chest. Now, the "ending ending" was surprisingly happy. I was left feeling very satisfied where the characters had left off but not enough to not make me want the second book in my hand the moment I put ACOTAR down. There are many, many questions I have about certain characters and of course, the usual curiosity, what's going to happen now? Who is this King and is he by any chance related to that monster in Adarlan (I think we all know the answer to that but the want to kill innocent people runs strong with these two...they probably exchange notes).

But that's not the "ending" I wanted to mention to you guys. I meant that whole thing that happened right before that ending. That huge, and I mean the "Oh my god, the world could open up into a sinkhole of oblivion beneath me and I still would not notice anything going awry because I am so enthralled with this epic (and brutal) scene" HUGE, showdown between Feyre and one of the most cruel characters Sarah has ever written (yes, it was that intense). I actually had to put the book down and count backwards from ten several times just to calm myself down. It was riveting and intense and it absolutely shattered my heart into itty-bitty pieces that left me with not just a broken heart but a terrible mess that I had to clean up afterwards.

Thanks Sarah.
The Mythology
This book is actually a retelling of one of my all time favorite childhood stories, Beauty and the Beast, and I loved the way it was done.The storylines between the original Beauty and the Beast mingles so well and flows smoothly with this new realm that we are introduced to in A Court of Thorns and Roses. The story is unique and different with sprinkles of similarities here and there.

 As we get further enveloped in the story, we see the connections as well as the differences between the two. How the masks that are worn in the Spring Court allude to a certain curse upon the characters in BatB or Belle's love for reading while our main character, Feyre, because of the impoverished state that she had been raised in for most of her life and her lack of a proper education, often finds herself frustrated with her illiteracy and eventually, almost costs Feyre her life.

Another thing I loved about this book and it's mythology is its interesting take on the Courts. Instead of the usual two courts, Seelie and Unseelie, we find ourselves surrounded by multiple courts: Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter, Dawn, Night, and Day court (Did I miss any?). Each is as different as Night and Day but all part of a complex system that makes up the world of Prythian and I'm so excited to dive deeper into the world and explore the other courts. In this story we mainly focus on the Spring Court where our beautiful and beloved Tamlin and Co. reside but we do getting subtle glimpses into other courts *coughs* night court *coughs*. And by glimpses, I mean, we are informed about the various courts but Sarah has confirmed we do get to visit the night court in the second book *cue confetti canons*

Final Thoughts

 After weeks of trying to write this review (yes, it has taken me forever) and do justice to just how much I loved this book, I've finally managed to come some what close. Overall, this book was like taking a bath with every single bath bomb out there in one sitting: Fun, colorful, and messy (BECAUSE OF THE TEARS AND HEART ACHE). I thoroughly loved and enjoyed this book and can't wait to see what's in store for us in book two.

 I recommend this book to anyone and anything, if your new or old, living or an inanimate object. If your plant wants to read it but doesn't know how, do the world a good deed, and read this book to your plant. Share it with the world and spread the ACOTAR love as we all now eagerly await the second book.

xoxo,
Jana

Get ACOTAR on amazon, book depository, Barnes and Noble

Find me on twitter
Find me on tumblr
Find me on Goodreads
Find me everywhere...well, that's not creepy









Publication Date: January 5, 2016 Preorder here!

Warning: I'm writing this because I feel that if I don't I might spontaneously combust into a shower of confetti and rainbows and unicorns and everything else that is glorious in this world. I apologize for my incoherent fangirl ramblings in advance. I just have a lot of feels about this book okay? okay

Yes, the rumors are in fact true that my lack of self control knows no bounds and therefore, there is nothing on this earth that can keep me from talking about this book any longer and making you aware of its sure-to-be awesomeness (Its not even out for another 10 months) *cries ugly tears*. 

As a direct result, I have absolutely no clue what I am going to be able tell you guys in this post besides my gradual increase from lowercase to capslock chants of me just telling you to prepare yourselves for this masterpiece...trust me on this. They normally tell you not to judge a book by its cover but I mean... let us be realistic here for once... this cover is badass, therefore (through deductive reasoning) the book must be, you know, badass as well.

Now, I'm not basing it SOLEY off of that fact. I've read and LOVED Susan's other series Something Strange and Deadly which in case you are not familiar with it, you can read a summary of it here! As well as her serialized space opera, The Starkiller Cycle which she co-writes with fellow author Sarah J. Maas (this is a fantastic must read as well and you guys can read it for free). Therefore, I know that I'm already in love with her writing style as well as familiar with it and while Truthwitch is going to be a slight Segway from the walking dead wreaking havoc in 19th century Philadelphia (as I said, slight), I'm thrilled to see what she has in store for us in this new fantasy world.



Speaking of which, for those of you who don't know what this book is about and have been reading this post all confused, here is a quick summary for you provided by Goodreads

On a continent ruled by three empires, some are born with a “witchery”, a magical skill that sets them apart from others.

In the Witchlands, there are almost as many types of magic as there are ways to get in trouble—as two desperate young women know all too well.

Safiya is a Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lie. It’s a powerful magic that many would kill to have on their side, especially amongst the nobility to which Safi was born. So Safi must keep her gift hidden, lest she be used as a pawn in the struggle between empires.

Iseult, a Threadwitch, can see the invisible ties that bind and entangle the lives around her—but she cannot see the bonds that touch her own heart. Her unlikely friendship with Safi has taken her from life as an outcast into one of reckless adventure, where she is a cool, wary balance to Safi’s hotheaded impulsiveness.

Safi and Iseult just want to be free to live their own lives, but war is coming to the Witchlands. With the help of the cunning Prince Merik (a Windwitch and ship’s captain) and the hindrance of a Bloodwitch bent on revenge, the friends must fight emperors, princes, and mercenaries alike, who will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.
Not truly convinced yet that this book will knock your socks right off your feet? 4 words, 10 letters, and an exclamation point: It's got a map! and if there's one thing I love more than a book without a beautiful map in it, it's one that has a beautiful map in it. Prepare your eyes, folks (you may have to click on the link to view the full version depending on what you're viewing this on)


 
 
Is this not one of the most beautiful maps you've ever seen? (and the slight resemblance to Europe was  planned/intentional, by the way).
 
I'm so excited for this book and hope you guys are too! So tell your neighbors, your neighbors' neighbors, your siblings, parents, aunts/uncles, pets, plants, etc. I'll leave some information down below if you're interested in learning more about this book while we anxiously wait for January 5, 2016 to come faster!

  • If you're interested in signing up for an ARC of Truthwitch, you can do that here
    • ARCs will also be available at BEA (Wednesday May 27, 3pm at the Macmillan booth) So if you'll be there, be sure to get your hands on a copy!
  • Be in the know and get fantastic and inspirational advice for future writers, sign up for the newsletter right here
  • Follow on twitter
  • Tune in to @Truthwitch 's twitter for #TruthwitchTuesday for exciting news about this wonderful series


xoxo,
Jana

Follow me on twitter
Follow me on tumblr
Follow me on Goodreads
Follow me everywhere....well, that's not creepy
Business Only Contact: bookishrealities@gmail.com

Spotlight Sunday: Truthwitch by Susan Dennard

May 3, 2015




Publication Date: January 5, 2016 Preorder here!

Warning: I'm writing this because I feel that if I don't I might spontaneously combust into a shower of confetti and rainbows and unicorns and everything else that is glorious in this world. I apologize for my incoherent fangirl ramblings in advance. I just have a lot of feels about this book okay? okay

Yes, the rumors are in fact true that my lack of self control knows no bounds and therefore, there is nothing on this earth that can keep me from talking about this book any longer and making you aware of its sure-to-be awesomeness (Its not even out for another 10 months) *cries ugly tears*. 

As a direct result, I have absolutely no clue what I am going to be able tell you guys in this post besides my gradual increase from lowercase to capslock chants of me just telling you to prepare yourselves for this masterpiece...trust me on this. They normally tell you not to judge a book by its cover but I mean... let us be realistic here for once... this cover is badass, therefore (through deductive reasoning) the book must be, you know, badass as well.

Now, I'm not basing it SOLEY off of that fact. I've read and LOVED Susan's other series Something Strange and Deadly which in case you are not familiar with it, you can read a summary of it here! As well as her serialized space opera, The Starkiller Cycle which she co-writes with fellow author Sarah J. Maas (this is a fantastic must read as well and you guys can read it for free). Therefore, I know that I'm already in love with her writing style as well as familiar with it and while Truthwitch is going to be a slight Segway from the walking dead wreaking havoc in 19th century Philadelphia (as I said, slight), I'm thrilled to see what she has in store for us in this new fantasy world.



Speaking of which, for those of you who don't know what this book is about and have been reading this post all confused, here is a quick summary for you provided by Goodreads

On a continent ruled by three empires, some are born with a “witchery”, a magical skill that sets them apart from others.

In the Witchlands, there are almost as many types of magic as there are ways to get in trouble—as two desperate young women know all too well.

Safiya is a Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lie. It’s a powerful magic that many would kill to have on their side, especially amongst the nobility to which Safi was born. So Safi must keep her gift hidden, lest she be used as a pawn in the struggle between empires.

Iseult, a Threadwitch, can see the invisible ties that bind and entangle the lives around her—but she cannot see the bonds that touch her own heart. Her unlikely friendship with Safi has taken her from life as an outcast into one of reckless adventure, where she is a cool, wary balance to Safi’s hotheaded impulsiveness.

Safi and Iseult just want to be free to live their own lives, but war is coming to the Witchlands. With the help of the cunning Prince Merik (a Windwitch and ship’s captain) and the hindrance of a Bloodwitch bent on revenge, the friends must fight emperors, princes, and mercenaries alike, who will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.
Not truly convinced yet that this book will knock your socks right off your feet? 4 words, 10 letters, and an exclamation point: It's got a map! and if there's one thing I love more than a book without a beautiful map in it, it's one that has a beautiful map in it. Prepare your eyes, folks (you may have to click on the link to view the full version depending on what you're viewing this on)


 
 
Is this not one of the most beautiful maps you've ever seen? (and the slight resemblance to Europe was  planned/intentional, by the way).
 
I'm so excited for this book and hope you guys are too! So tell your neighbors, your neighbors' neighbors, your siblings, parents, aunts/uncles, pets, plants, etc. I'll leave some information down below if you're interested in learning more about this book while we anxiously wait for January 5, 2016 to come faster!

  • If you're interested in signing up for an ARC of Truthwitch, you can do that here
    • ARCs will also be available at BEA (Wednesday May 27, 3pm at the Macmillan booth) So if you'll be there, be sure to get your hands on a copy!
  • Be in the know and get fantastic and inspirational advice for future writers, sign up for the newsletter right here
  • Follow on twitter
  • Tune in to @Truthwitch 's twitter for #TruthwitchTuesday for exciting news about this wonderful series


xoxo,
Jana

Follow me on twitter
Follow me on tumblr
Follow me on Goodreads
Follow me everywhere....well, that's not creepy
Business Only Contact: bookishrealities@gmail.com





As April comes to an end and May quickly approaches, I say with deep, deep sadness that It hasn't been much of a reading month (that's what you were thinking I was going to say, right?). I'm finally approaching the finish line, almost done with the marathon of sleep deprivation and cramming that comprises your freshman year of college... as well as your sophomore, junior and senior year.

 With that being said, school comes first and therefore, reading must unfortunately come second but even with that, I managed to squeeze in a couple of really fun and enjoyable reads in the spare time that I did have. So, without further ado, let's get into this month's wrap up!


  • Slammed by Colleen Hoover
    • Following the unexpected death of her father, 18-year-old Layken is forced to be the rock for both her mother and younger brother. Outwardly, she appears resilient and tenacious, but inwardly, she's losing hope.

      Enter Will Cooper: The attractive, 21-year-old new neighbor with an intriguing passion for slam poetry and a unique sense of humor. Within days of their introduction, Will and Layken form an intense emotional connection, leaving Layken with a renewed sense of hope.

      Not long after an intense, heart-stopping first date, they are slammed to the core when a shocking revelation forces their new relationship to a sudden halt. Daily interactions become impossibly painful as they struggle to find a balance between the feelings that pull them together, and the secret that keeps them apart.
    • Rating: 4.7/5
    • Bought/Given? Bought  
    • Final Thoughts: Absolutely loved this book and flew through it within a few hours! Somewhat light contemporary read and really easy to get into for those days when you're in a reading slump (I say "somewhat" because it does have some heavy moments that may or may not have left me in tears).  
  • Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson
    • A princess must find her place in a reborn world.

      She flees on her wedding day.

      She steals ancient documents from the Chancellor's secret collection.

      She is pursued by bounty hunters sent by her own father.

      She is Princess Lia, seventeen, First Daughter of the House of Morrighan.

      The Kingdom of Morrighan is steeped in tradition and the stories of a bygone world, but some traditions Lia can't abide. Like having to marry someone she's never met to secure a political alliance.

      Fed up and ready for a new life, Lia flees to a distant village on the morning of her wedding. She settles in among the common folk, intrigued when two mysterious and handsome strangers arrive—and unaware that one is the jilted prince and the other an assassin sent to kill her. Deceptions swirl and Lia finds herself on the brink of unlocking perilous secrets—secrets that may unravel her world—even as she feels herself falling in love.
    • Rating: 4.7/5
    • Bought/Given? Bought
    • Final Thoughts: Review (May or may not have left me an emotional train wreck)
  • Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johanson
    • On her nineteenth birthday, Princess Kelsea Raleigh Glynn, raised in exile, sets out on a perilous journey back to the castle of her birth to ascend her rightful throne. Plain and serious, a girl who loves books and learning, Kelsea bears little resemblance to her mother, the vain and frivolous Queen Elyssa. But though she may be inexperienced and sheltered, Kelsea is not defenseless: Around her neck hangs the Tearling sapphire, a jewel of immense magical power; and accompanying her is the Queen’s Guard, a cadre of brave knights led by the enigmatic and dedicated Lazarus. Kelsea will need them all to survive a cabal of enemies who will use every weapon—from crimson-caped assassins to the darkest blood magic—to prevent her from wearing the crown.

      Despite her royal blood, Kelsea feels like nothing so much as an insecure girl, a child called upon to lead a people and a kingdom about which she knows almost nothing. But what she discovers in the capital will change everything, confronting her with horrors she never imagined. An act of singular daring will throw Kelsea’s kingdom into tumult, unleashing the vengeance of the tyrannical ruler of neighboring Mortmesne: the Red Queen, a sorceress possessed of the darkest magic. Now Kelsea will begin to discover whom among the servants, aristocracy, and her own guard she can trust.

      But the quest to save her kingdom and meet her destiny has only just begun—a wondrous journey of self-discovery and a trial by fire that will make her a legend…if she can survive.
    • Rating:3.9/5
    • Bought/Given? Bought
    • Final Thoughts: I think my issue with this book was that my expectations were far too high after reading the synopsis. DO NOT GET ME WRONG, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and loved the plot and where it's going after finishing this book. It is a little slow in the middle and may get a little info-dumpy.
  • A Darkness Strange and Lovely by Susan Dennard
    • With her brother dead and her mother on the verge of insanity, Eleanor Fitt is utterly alone. Even the Spirit-Hunters - Joseph, Jie and the handsome, enigmatic Daniel - have fled to Paris. So when Eleanor begins to hear the vicious barking of hounds and see images of haunting yellow eyes, she fears the worst - that the Dead, and the necromancer Marcus, are coming for her.

      To escape and search out the Spirit-Hunters, Eleanor boards a steamer bound for France. There she meets Oliver, a young man who claims to have known her brother. Though friendly, Oliver entices Eleanor with necromancy and black magic, yet as long as she can resist his powerful temptation, she'll be fine. But when she arrives in Paris, she finds that the Dead have taken over the city...and there's a whole new evil lurking. With the body count rising, Eleanor is forced to make a deadly decision that will go against everything the Spirit-Hunters stand for.

      In Paris, there's a price for this darkness strange and lovely...and it may have Eleanor paying with her life.
    • Rating: 4.5/5
    • Bought/Given? Bought
    • Final Thoughts: I am working on a review for this one! (it's just taking a while because I'm still really busy with school) Overall, I loved this book just as much, if not more, than the first. The storyline was energetic and mysterious and kept me on the edge of my chair...er.. bed.
Hope you guys had a fantastic month of April and on to May we go! (how cheesy can I get...).  Let me know what you guys read this/last month and what you're looking forward to reading in May!

xoxo,
Jana

Find me on twitter
Find me on tumblr
Find me on Goodreads
Find me everywhere...well.. that's not creepy.


April Book Wrap Up!

April 28, 2015





As April comes to an end and May quickly approaches, I say with deep, deep sadness that It hasn't been much of a reading month (that's what you were thinking I was going to say, right?). I'm finally approaching the finish line, almost done with the marathon of sleep deprivation and cramming that comprises your freshman year of college... as well as your sophomore, junior and senior year.

 With that being said, school comes first and therefore, reading must unfortunately come second but even with that, I managed to squeeze in a couple of really fun and enjoyable reads in the spare time that I did have. So, without further ado, let's get into this month's wrap up!


  • Slammed by Colleen Hoover
    • Following the unexpected death of her father, 18-year-old Layken is forced to be the rock for both her mother and younger brother. Outwardly, she appears resilient and tenacious, but inwardly, she's losing hope.

      Enter Will Cooper: The attractive, 21-year-old new neighbor with an intriguing passion for slam poetry and a unique sense of humor. Within days of their introduction, Will and Layken form an intense emotional connection, leaving Layken with a renewed sense of hope.

      Not long after an intense, heart-stopping first date, they are slammed to the core when a shocking revelation forces their new relationship to a sudden halt. Daily interactions become impossibly painful as they struggle to find a balance between the feelings that pull them together, and the secret that keeps them apart.
    • Rating: 4.7/5
    • Bought/Given? Bought  
    • Final Thoughts: Absolutely loved this book and flew through it within a few hours! Somewhat light contemporary read and really easy to get into for those days when you're in a reading slump (I say "somewhat" because it does have some heavy moments that may or may not have left me in tears).  
  • Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson
    • A princess must find her place in a reborn world.

      She flees on her wedding day.

      She steals ancient documents from the Chancellor's secret collection.

      She is pursued by bounty hunters sent by her own father.

      She is Princess Lia, seventeen, First Daughter of the House of Morrighan.

      The Kingdom of Morrighan is steeped in tradition and the stories of a bygone world, but some traditions Lia can't abide. Like having to marry someone she's never met to secure a political alliance.

      Fed up and ready for a new life, Lia flees to a distant village on the morning of her wedding. She settles in among the common folk, intrigued when two mysterious and handsome strangers arrive—and unaware that one is the jilted prince and the other an assassin sent to kill her. Deceptions swirl and Lia finds herself on the brink of unlocking perilous secrets—secrets that may unravel her world—even as she feels herself falling in love.
    • Rating: 4.7/5
    • Bought/Given? Bought
    • Final Thoughts: Review (May or may not have left me an emotional train wreck)
  • Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johanson
    • On her nineteenth birthday, Princess Kelsea Raleigh Glynn, raised in exile, sets out on a perilous journey back to the castle of her birth to ascend her rightful throne. Plain and serious, a girl who loves books and learning, Kelsea bears little resemblance to her mother, the vain and frivolous Queen Elyssa. But though she may be inexperienced and sheltered, Kelsea is not defenseless: Around her neck hangs the Tearling sapphire, a jewel of immense magical power; and accompanying her is the Queen’s Guard, a cadre of brave knights led by the enigmatic and dedicated Lazarus. Kelsea will need them all to survive a cabal of enemies who will use every weapon—from crimson-caped assassins to the darkest blood magic—to prevent her from wearing the crown.

      Despite her royal blood, Kelsea feels like nothing so much as an insecure girl, a child called upon to lead a people and a kingdom about which she knows almost nothing. But what she discovers in the capital will change everything, confronting her with horrors she never imagined. An act of singular daring will throw Kelsea’s kingdom into tumult, unleashing the vengeance of the tyrannical ruler of neighboring Mortmesne: the Red Queen, a sorceress possessed of the darkest magic. Now Kelsea will begin to discover whom among the servants, aristocracy, and her own guard she can trust.

      But the quest to save her kingdom and meet her destiny has only just begun—a wondrous journey of self-discovery and a trial by fire that will make her a legend…if she can survive.
    • Rating:3.9/5
    • Bought/Given? Bought
    • Final Thoughts: I think my issue with this book was that my expectations were far too high after reading the synopsis. DO NOT GET ME WRONG, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and loved the plot and where it's going after finishing this book. It is a little slow in the middle and may get a little info-dumpy.
  • A Darkness Strange and Lovely by Susan Dennard
    • With her brother dead and her mother on the verge of insanity, Eleanor Fitt is utterly alone. Even the Spirit-Hunters - Joseph, Jie and the handsome, enigmatic Daniel - have fled to Paris. So when Eleanor begins to hear the vicious barking of hounds and see images of haunting yellow eyes, she fears the worst - that the Dead, and the necromancer Marcus, are coming for her.

      To escape and search out the Spirit-Hunters, Eleanor boards a steamer bound for France. There she meets Oliver, a young man who claims to have known her brother. Though friendly, Oliver entices Eleanor with necromancy and black magic, yet as long as she can resist his powerful temptation, she'll be fine. But when she arrives in Paris, she finds that the Dead have taken over the city...and there's a whole new evil lurking. With the body count rising, Eleanor is forced to make a deadly decision that will go against everything the Spirit-Hunters stand for.

      In Paris, there's a price for this darkness strange and lovely...and it may have Eleanor paying with her life.
    • Rating: 4.5/5
    • Bought/Given? Bought
    • Final Thoughts: I am working on a review for this one! (it's just taking a while because I'm still really busy with school) Overall, I loved this book just as much, if not more, than the first. The storyline was energetic and mysterious and kept me on the edge of my chair...er.. bed.
Hope you guys had a fantastic month of April and on to May we go! (how cheesy can I get...).  Let me know what you guys read this/last month and what you're looking forward to reading in May!

xoxo,
Jana

Find me on twitter
Find me on tumblr
Find me on Goodreads
Find me everywhere...well.. that's not creepy.


We all have authors that we love and then there are the author's whose feet we practically worship at (that may be a bit of an exaggeration but let's be real; how many times have we been willing to perform sacrificial offerings to get a snippet, a teaser, or maybe even an update on how our favorite characters were holding up... that's what I thought).

I have so many authors that I love and adore and I would add them all on here if I could but alas, it is late and I am slightly sleep deprived from final's coming up (which I should be studying for... oops). Therefore, I have decided to comprise a list of some of my absolute favorite authors to date and fear not, these are not the only ones but simply, those whose books I have read past and present and essentially, cannot live without.

  • Cassandra Clare (author of The Mortal Instruments, The Infernal Devices, The Magisterium, and oh my goodness... the list goes on)
    • Yup... it would not be a proper post without mentioning one of my all time favorite authors out there. I've been reading her books ever since my awkward, middle school stage (and awkward it was) and the last book in The Mortal Instrument series came out only weeks before my high school graduation so her books do hold a very special place in my heart. If you're looking for an  EPIC read and do not mind getting you're heart shattered and stomped on several times, then a Cassandra Clare book is the one for you! Not only is she an amazing author but also incredibly interactive with her readers (if you want to follow her on twitter, you can do that here). Best known for her books in the shadowhunter chronicles, she is also co-authoring another series with author Holly Black called The Magisterium!
  • Sarah J. Maas  (author of the Throne of Glass Series and her new upcoming NA series A Court of Thorns and Roses... EEEP)
    • a.k.a The Queen of Ultimate Badass Heroins and should also be referred to as queen of character development (seriously... have you read her books?). I'm not gifted enough with words to even begin describing the plethora of feels, tears, and just overwhelming roller coaster ride of emotion and unworldly hot guys (*sigh* I want them all) that make up her books. Of course, that makes it sound like her books are just over crawling with men and rivers created by my own tears but that's not what I meant... I'll be honest with you guys.. I have never read a book whose writing is so beautifully descriptive and filled with emotion like these books. I swear the world building in itself just blows your mind. When you read these books it's not just your brain (yup, I'm getting really technical here...fasten your seatbelts) processing the words and creating a mentally visual representation, the story glides like a paintbrush on a canvas, creating this beautiful and dark realm that you can't help but get lost in. Seriously, you get lost in her world and it is so well done (you'll need a map to find you're way back to reality).
  • Susan Dennard (author of Something Strange and Deadly series and upcoming Truthwitch )
    • If you're looking for an author with not just amazing, kickass books but also a lot of inspirational and helpful advice for future, aspiring authors, then I give you Susan Dennard. I fly through her books and love them so much (and not just because the MC is from Philly...or well, 1800's Philadelphia but same thing ). If you're looking for a fun and definitely adventurous ride, then I highly recommend you check out her books. Her books are so unique in style and context, I mean... it's not every day you read about a strong female protagonist from the 19th century that just so happens to kick ass when it comes to fighting the walking dead...yes, I did just say "the walking dead" along with her trusted and adorably stubborn squad (I'm batting my eyelashes at you, Daniel). She also co-authors with Sarah (as seen above) in The Starkillers Cycle which is something you should go check out if you haven't yet (it's free and super fun to read, especially if you're into sci-fi) and you can subscribe or see it here ! And side note: whose excited for Truthwitch because I can't remember the last tine I was this excited for a book to come out... January, please come quick. 
  • Stephanie Perkins (author of Anna and the French Kiss, Lola and the Boy Next Door, Isla and the Happily Ever After )
    • Anytime I think about a book I've read by Stephanie Perkins I cannot help but get this very strange feeling of warmth in my stomach with a mix of adrenaline... oh wait, that's called happiness. These books are just pure, exulting happiness and while they do of course have problems in them (what's a book without conflict, right?) you can't help but be almost giddy with joy after reading one of her books because they're just an absolute joy to read.
  • Alexandra Bracken (author of The Darkest Minds series and upcoming Passenger )
    • jfhd <--- this was not me but my keyboard which goes to show that even my computer knows Alexandra Bracken's books are fantastic (I'm not kidding). If you are not familiar with The Darkest Minds series, then I recommend you familiarize yourself with them because Oh mY Goodness....YOU GUYS... these books are fantastic and so action packed and adrenaline inducing that you might just find yourself pulling an all-nighter trying to finish one of these puppies (maybe wait till school's over??) Once you pick them up you won't be able to put them down and if you LOVE and CRAVE character development in books like yours truly then well... consider yourself warned.
  • Jennifer L. Armentrout (there's simply too many to list but a couple are the Lux Series, The Dark Elements Series, Don't Look Back, etc.)
    • Whether you're new or old to the YA genre, chances are you've crossed paths with one of Jennifer's works of ART. She's written something for everything; humans, aliens, demons, and even gargoyles (and by written for I mean written about, although if you are an alien or gargoyle reading this, I'm sure you'll love these books as well ). Another fantastic author who dominates an entire shelf on my bookshelf simply because there's so many books and they're all incredible that I can't not own them.
  • Diana Gabaldon (Outlander Series )
    • Oh my words... I don't even know where to start but all I'm going to say is if you have not read Outlander then you need to stop what you're doing and go out and get it because Outlander is Life...okay? okay.
  • Mary E. Pearson (The Remnant Chronicles)
    • While I do admit being relatively new to this author, that does not mean that I am not REALLY excited for her current and future books. *sigh* How do I even begin to describe Mary E. Pearson's books? Well, there's definitely a kickass protagonist, some, again, very hot guys with at times indiscernible motives and OH... that one time she threw a plot twist at us so hard it practically knocked me back into the year 1995... yup, that happened. She definitely keeps you on your toes but that is one of the reasons why I love her books and what makes it such an intriguing read.
Thank you so much for reading guys! I Hope that you've found some of your favorites on this list or that I've introduced you to a new author.... whatever it is, I hope you enjoyed this! Tell me your favorite authors in the comments below or any recommendation you have.

Jana

Find me on twitter
Find me on tumblr
Find me on Goodreads
Find me everywhere.... well, that's not creepy

Authors You Need in Your Life

April 25, 2015

We all have authors that we love and then there are the author's whose feet we practically worship at (that may be a bit of an exaggeration but let's be real; how many times have we been willing to perform sacrificial offerings to get a snippet, a teaser, or maybe even an update on how our favorite characters were holding up... that's what I thought).

I have so many authors that I love and adore and I would add them all on here if I could but alas, it is late and I am slightly sleep deprived from final's coming up (which I should be studying for... oops). Therefore, I have decided to comprise a list of some of my absolute favorite authors to date and fear not, these are not the only ones but simply, those whose books I have read past and present and essentially, cannot live without.

  • Cassandra Clare (author of The Mortal Instruments, The Infernal Devices, The Magisterium, and oh my goodness... the list goes on)
    • Yup... it would not be a proper post without mentioning one of my all time favorite authors out there. I've been reading her books ever since my awkward, middle school stage (and awkward it was) and the last book in The Mortal Instrument series came out only weeks before my high school graduation so her books do hold a very special place in my heart. If you're looking for an  EPIC read and do not mind getting you're heart shattered and stomped on several times, then a Cassandra Clare book is the one for you! Not only is she an amazing author but also incredibly interactive with her readers (if you want to follow her on twitter, you can do that here). Best known for her books in the shadowhunter chronicles, she is also co-authoring another series with author Holly Black called The Magisterium!
  • Sarah J. Maas  (author of the Throne of Glass Series and her new upcoming NA series A Court of Thorns and Roses... EEEP)
    • a.k.a The Queen of Ultimate Badass Heroins and should also be referred to as queen of character development (seriously... have you read her books?). I'm not gifted enough with words to even begin describing the plethora of feels, tears, and just overwhelming roller coaster ride of emotion and unworldly hot guys (*sigh* I want them all) that make up her books. Of course, that makes it sound like her books are just over crawling with men and rivers created by my own tears but that's not what I meant... I'll be honest with you guys.. I have never read a book whose writing is so beautifully descriptive and filled with emotion like these books. I swear the world building in itself just blows your mind. When you read these books it's not just your brain (yup, I'm getting really technical here...fasten your seatbelts) processing the words and creating a mentally visual representation, the story glides like a paintbrush on a canvas, creating this beautiful and dark realm that you can't help but get lost in. Seriously, you get lost in her world and it is so well done (you'll need a map to find you're way back to reality).
  • Susan Dennard (author of Something Strange and Deadly series and upcoming Truthwitch )
    • If you're looking for an author with not just amazing, kickass books but also a lot of inspirational and helpful advice for future, aspiring authors, then I give you Susan Dennard. I fly through her books and love them so much (and not just because the MC is from Philly...or well, 1800's Philadelphia but same thing ). If you're looking for a fun and definitely adventurous ride, then I highly recommend you check out her books. Her books are so unique in style and context, I mean... it's not every day you read about a strong female protagonist from the 19th century that just so happens to kick ass when it comes to fighting the walking dead...yes, I did just say "the walking dead" along with her trusted and adorably stubborn squad (I'm batting my eyelashes at you, Daniel). She also co-authors with Sarah (as seen above) in The Starkillers Cycle which is something you should go check out if you haven't yet (it's free and super fun to read, especially if you're into sci-fi) and you can subscribe or see it here ! And side note: whose excited for Truthwitch because I can't remember the last tine I was this excited for a book to come out... January, please come quick. 
  • Stephanie Perkins (author of Anna and the French Kiss, Lola and the Boy Next Door, Isla and the Happily Ever After )
    • Anytime I think about a book I've read by Stephanie Perkins I cannot help but get this very strange feeling of warmth in my stomach with a mix of adrenaline... oh wait, that's called happiness. These books are just pure, exulting happiness and while they do of course have problems in them (what's a book without conflict, right?) you can't help but be almost giddy with joy after reading one of her books because they're just an absolute joy to read.
  • Alexandra Bracken (author of The Darkest Minds series and upcoming Passenger )
    • jfhd <--- this was not me but my keyboard which goes to show that even my computer knows Alexandra Bracken's books are fantastic (I'm not kidding). If you are not familiar with The Darkest Minds series, then I recommend you familiarize yourself with them because Oh mY Goodness....YOU GUYS... these books are fantastic and so action packed and adrenaline inducing that you might just find yourself pulling an all-nighter trying to finish one of these puppies (maybe wait till school's over??) Once you pick them up you won't be able to put them down and if you LOVE and CRAVE character development in books like yours truly then well... consider yourself warned.
  • Jennifer L. Armentrout (there's simply too many to list but a couple are the Lux Series, The Dark Elements Series, Don't Look Back, etc.)
    • Whether you're new or old to the YA genre, chances are you've crossed paths with one of Jennifer's works of ART. She's written something for everything; humans, aliens, demons, and even gargoyles (and by written for I mean written about, although if you are an alien or gargoyle reading this, I'm sure you'll love these books as well ). Another fantastic author who dominates an entire shelf on my bookshelf simply because there's so many books and they're all incredible that I can't not own them.
  • Diana Gabaldon (Outlander Series )
    • Oh my words... I don't even know where to start but all I'm going to say is if you have not read Outlander then you need to stop what you're doing and go out and get it because Outlander is Life...okay? okay.
  • Mary E. Pearson (The Remnant Chronicles)
    • While I do admit being relatively new to this author, that does not mean that I am not REALLY excited for her current and future books. *sigh* How do I even begin to describe Mary E. Pearson's books? Well, there's definitely a kickass protagonist, some, again, very hot guys with at times indiscernible motives and OH... that one time she threw a plot twist at us so hard it practically knocked me back into the year 1995... yup, that happened. She definitely keeps you on your toes but that is one of the reasons why I love her books and what makes it such an intriguing read.
Thank you so much for reading guys! I Hope that you've found some of your favorites on this list or that I've introduced you to a new author.... whatever it is, I hope you enjoyed this! Tell me your favorite authors in the comments below or any recommendation you have.

Jana

Find me on twitter
Find me on tumblr
Find me on Goodreads
Find me everywhere.... well, that's not creepy





Buy it on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Book Depository !

Well, I'd be lying if I said that I have a single coherent thought about this book because GUYS....THIS BOOK...I experienced feelings that I had not experienced in a while when reading but it was a welcome surprise. So, as I mentioned, I apologize if that by the end of this review you won't have understood a single thing you just read. That's exactly what the inside of my brain feels like right now...frazzled.

Kiss of Deception (lets call it KoD for short) is the first book in a series by Mary E. Pearson and man... OH man, am I excited for where this series is headed. This book incorporates everything I had hoped it would and so so SO much more. Before I begin my ramblings about how badly I want you guys to read this book, here's a description from our ever dependable friend Goodreads:

                          
 She flees on her wedding day.

She steals ancient documents from the Chancellor's secret collection.

She is pursued by bounty hunters sent by her own father.

She is Princess Lia, seventeen, First Daughter of the House of Morrighan.

The Kingdom of Morrighan is steeped in tradition and the stories of a bygone world, but some traditions Lia can't abide. Like having to marry someone she's never met to secure a political alliance.

Fed up and ready for a new life, Lia flees to a distant village on the morning of her wedding. She settles in among the common folk, intrigued when two mysterious and handsome strangers arrive—and unaware that one is the jilted prince and the other an assassin sent to kill her. Deceptions swirl and Lia finds herself on the brink of unlocking perilous secrets—secrets that may unravel her world—even as she feels herself falling in love

 If that didn't convince you of how badly you need this book in your life, well I'm going to try.

In case you did not guess, I loved... and I mean LOVED this book. I heard so many amazing things about it and finally decided to buy it for it to only sit on my shelves while I tried to get out of my terrible reading slump *sighs* After several reading-less months, I finally decided to give reading a try again with this one and I was not disappointed. This book had me screaming and crying and laughing and confused and feeling every single emotion on the emotional spectrum. In other words, it left me a complete mess lying in a puddle of my own tears. What else is new?

So, this book follows our main protagonist, Lia, who flees on her wedding day in order to avoid being bound to a man whom she does not love and has never met. Mary Pearson has an amazing talent of really making you feel for her characters. Immediately, we see what her life is like and why she does the things that she does and so, when she decides to flee, along with her trusted friend Pauline, we are more than happy to say goodbye to life as we know it and follow her into the wilderness...quite literally. She may have been born into royalty but she is far from a princess. She is everything you look for in a badass heroin and that is exactly what she is. She really steps up to the plate when she needs to and her loyalty to her best friend knows no bounds. I loved the friendship between these two and made me realize that everyone should have a Pauline or Lia in their life.

Now... going into this book, I was made aware of several things: 1. How great it is 2. There are several very hot guys that we come across and one may or may not be an assassin and the other a certain...prince? 3. Plot Twist... and MF PLOT TWIST IT WAS. I personally love plot twists because I enjoy being surprised especially when I think I've got the whole story thought out but even though I...sort...of... saw this one coming, I DID NOT SEE IT COMING and I applaud *insert clapping hands emoji here* Mary because this one was either so painfully obvious that it hurts to admit that I was fooled or it wasn't obvious at all and it was brilliantly done. All I'm saying is don't trust anyone you think you can trust in this book.

Gah, okay what else...the world building! There was definitely quite a bit of world building in this book because it does not take place in our own universe and therefore, it was necessary but while sometimes, first books can be quite info-dumpy when it comes to a fantasy realm, this book was not overwhelming. In short there are three kingdoms: Kingdom of Morrighan, where our main protagonist beings her story, Kingdom of Dalbreck, where her would-be betrothed resides, and the mysterious kingdom of Venda, home to the ruthless and uneducated barbarians. It was interesting to learn about the traditions in this world and to see our characters let loose and have some fun (even if it's only temporary). Throughout the story, we learn about the conflicts between the kingdoms and I'm sure we'll learn much more in books to come.

The ending had to be one of the most heart and gut wrenching endings/cliffhangers that I have ever come across and...well... you'll have to read it to find out...yup..I dare you. I'm so excited for where this series is heading and I cannot wait to read the next installment The Heart of Betrayal and see how our characters fair in very different setting from what they're used to.

Jana


Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson

April 22, 2015





Buy it on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Book Depository !

Well, I'd be lying if I said that I have a single coherent thought about this book because GUYS....THIS BOOK...I experienced feelings that I had not experienced in a while when reading but it was a welcome surprise. So, as I mentioned, I apologize if that by the end of this review you won't have understood a single thing you just read. That's exactly what the inside of my brain feels like right now...frazzled.

Kiss of Deception (lets call it KoD for short) is the first book in a series by Mary E. Pearson and man... OH man, am I excited for where this series is headed. This book incorporates everything I had hoped it would and so so SO much more. Before I begin my ramblings about how badly I want you guys to read this book, here's a description from our ever dependable friend Goodreads:

                          
 She flees on her wedding day.

She steals ancient documents from the Chancellor's secret collection.

She is pursued by bounty hunters sent by her own father.

She is Princess Lia, seventeen, First Daughter of the House of Morrighan.

The Kingdom of Morrighan is steeped in tradition and the stories of a bygone world, but some traditions Lia can't abide. Like having to marry someone she's never met to secure a political alliance.

Fed up and ready for a new life, Lia flees to a distant village on the morning of her wedding. She settles in among the common folk, intrigued when two mysterious and handsome strangers arrive—and unaware that one is the jilted prince and the other an assassin sent to kill her. Deceptions swirl and Lia finds herself on the brink of unlocking perilous secrets—secrets that may unravel her world—even as she feels herself falling in love

 If that didn't convince you of how badly you need this book in your life, well I'm going to try.

In case you did not guess, I loved... and I mean LOVED this book. I heard so many amazing things about it and finally decided to buy it for it to only sit on my shelves while I tried to get out of my terrible reading slump *sighs* After several reading-less months, I finally decided to give reading a try again with this one and I was not disappointed. This book had me screaming and crying and laughing and confused and feeling every single emotion on the emotional spectrum. In other words, it left me a complete mess lying in a puddle of my own tears. What else is new?

So, this book follows our main protagonist, Lia, who flees on her wedding day in order to avoid being bound to a man whom she does not love and has never met. Mary Pearson has an amazing talent of really making you feel for her characters. Immediately, we see what her life is like and why she does the things that she does and so, when she decides to flee, along with her trusted friend Pauline, we are more than happy to say goodbye to life as we know it and follow her into the wilderness...quite literally. She may have been born into royalty but she is far from a princess. She is everything you look for in a badass heroin and that is exactly what she is. She really steps up to the plate when she needs to and her loyalty to her best friend knows no bounds. I loved the friendship between these two and made me realize that everyone should have a Pauline or Lia in their life.

Now... going into this book, I was made aware of several things: 1. How great it is 2. There are several very hot guys that we come across and one may or may not be an assassin and the other a certain...prince? 3. Plot Twist... and MF PLOT TWIST IT WAS. I personally love plot twists because I enjoy being surprised especially when I think I've got the whole story thought out but even though I...sort...of... saw this one coming, I DID NOT SEE IT COMING and I applaud *insert clapping hands emoji here* Mary because this one was either so painfully obvious that it hurts to admit that I was fooled or it wasn't obvious at all and it was brilliantly done. All I'm saying is don't trust anyone you think you can trust in this book.

Gah, okay what else...the world building! There was definitely quite a bit of world building in this book because it does not take place in our own universe and therefore, it was necessary but while sometimes, first books can be quite info-dumpy when it comes to a fantasy realm, this book was not overwhelming. In short there are three kingdoms: Kingdom of Morrighan, where our main protagonist beings her story, Kingdom of Dalbreck, where her would-be betrothed resides, and the mysterious kingdom of Venda, home to the ruthless and uneducated barbarians. It was interesting to learn about the traditions in this world and to see our characters let loose and have some fun (even if it's only temporary). Throughout the story, we learn about the conflicts between the kingdoms and I'm sure we'll learn much more in books to come.

The ending had to be one of the most heart and gut wrenching endings/cliffhangers that I have ever come across and...well... you'll have to read it to find out...yup..I dare you. I'm so excited for where this series is heading and I cannot wait to read the next installment The Heart of Betrayal and see how our characters fair in very different setting from what they're used to.

Jana



 *SPOILER WARNING* This review DOES contain spoilers about Heir of Fire and MAY contain spoilers about Throne of Glass and Crown of Midnight
*Takes deep breathe* Writing this review is nerve wracking for two reasons because not only is it my first review I’ve written…ever, but also because this book has left my emotions in such a tangled mess that, even a week later, I’m still trying to make sense of what I’m feeling.

Heir of Fire is undoubtedly one of my favorite books that I have ever read, especially this year. Going into this third installment, you’d assume, from the first two books that you know most of what there is to know about Celaena. NOT (and I repeat NOT) at all the case here. If you experience constant cravings for buckets of character development, this book is a Tiramisu on top of your chocolate sundae. We see her tear down every wall, every shield, every fortress she has built to protect herself from the pain she experienced when she was so young and had her whole life ripped from under her and it was, for lack of a better word, heartbreaking. You see all the guilt and pain, threatening to tear her from the inside out and how it leads to what I believe to be the turning point of her character. We finally learn the story about her past and how it eventually lead to her becoming one of the most notorious assassin in all the land. At the end of the book, I think it’s pretty evident that she is a completely different person from the one she has been in the past two books and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t excited for what’s to come.

I loved and thoroughly enjoyed Sarah’s use of flashbacks to illustrate for us what happened in Celaena’s past. Whether it be through dreams or the super creepy Valg Princes, we finally got all the puzzle pieces we needed to learn how she got to where she was. I recently went back and skimmed through Throne of Glass and Crown of Midnight and it’s funny to see how many subtle hints were being left out in plain sight that hinted to who Celaena was and her past.
She just stared at him, willing her fingers to unclench, willing air into her lungs. If it were true… No, it wasn’t true. If these people actually claimed to have met the heir to the throne, then she had to be an imposter – Crown of Midnight (85)
I just never thought much about them. She gradually but finally embraces all the pain and sorrow and uses it to finally make a stand. She’s slowly becoming a more powerful and deadlier than you could ever imagine queen (something she wanted nothing to do with in the beginning) and she’s finally ready to fight and stand for her people and her kingdom.

As I have mentioned before, the character development in this book is phenomenal. By the end of this book, she’s still the same stubborn, witty, brave young women we met in the beginning but she’s also wiser, stronger and fiercer than we’ve ever seen her and ready to fight for her people. Throughout the book, while in the beginning she wanted no part of being queen, we see that she is not proud of who she is becoming or for turning her back on and abandoning her kingdom for ten years. Yet, at the final battle, she’s finally ready to win back her land and the life she had lost that terrible night many years ago.

Now, onto the subject of NEW CHARACTERS, Celaena could not have made the transition from assassin to queen without a little help from Rowan Whitehorn, a Fae prince and also loyal servant to his and  Celaena’s manipulative aunt, Queen Maeve. While, he himself is not too eager to be helping Celaena harness her power and making her worthy of entry to her Maeve’s domain, Doranelle, so that she can get the answers she needs about the Wyrdkeys, they eventually grow on each other and share a bond so powerful I was on the floor hyperventilating for a good ten minutes. He’s the alpha male with a very strict no-nonsense attitude and I’m glad he didn’t put up with Celaena’s occasional (excuse my language) bullshit. She attacks him verbally? He throws one that will give her a black eye all the way into next week. And in the end, it’s his persistence with her that gets her to realize the full scale of her power and potential and how far she can go with it. By the end, they develop a bond so intimate (and no, not romantically) that there are literally no barriers between them, nothing. As a team, they are both fascinating and terrifying.

We are also introduced to a new awesome warrior, Aedion Ashryver, who just so happened to be Celaena’s cousin and childhood best friend. To be honest, I completely hated the guy in the beginning when we were made to believe his alliance was with the king. However, once he was found to be with the rebels, I grew to love him with all his deadly smiles, muscles, and sporadic behavior. He’s dead set on taking down the King once and for all and to see his true queen reclaim her rightful place on the throne. I firmly believe and hope that there is a reunion coming up between Celaena and Aedion.

Back to our lovely Prince and Captain back “home”, their relationship was falling apart at the end of book two and certainly did not improve in this book. Chaol is still as hesitant as ever about his position throughout the whole book and where his loyalties lie. I found myself often growing frustrated at his indecisiveness and inability to accept that Dorian and Celaena have magic. Even with that indecisiveness, his loyalties and protection lie to Dorian and Dorian only in the end. With all the events that took fold at the end, even with all the frustration, he finally chose the side he should have picked from the beginning but now, with Dorian being taken to some magic prison and Aedion in the dungeons, he and the rebels have a big task ahead of them.

Now, aside from the characters, another reason this big was a big win for me was because of the deeper in-depth view we got to see into Sarah j. Maas’s world. After the first two books, we’re used to being, strictly, within the confinement of Rifthold but this particular book was not just told from multiple characters but also multiple settings, taking us literally deeper into the darker shadows of the this epic, high fantasy world. We get to explore Wendlyn and briefly, Doranelle, as well as get clued in to the King’s darker and even more sinister plans going underway in the Ferian Gap. There we are introduced to another interesting character, Manon Blackbeak, heir of the Blackbeak Coven of the Ironteeth Witches. Other, more secondary characters also played an integral part in the story’s plot and our beloved main character’s character development. To me, the writing overall in this book, was a good step up from the last two books. I’m not saying I didn’t enjoy the previous books (I loved them just as much) but I feel the writing matured in this installment and was more realistic, making it more enjoyable.

The overall atmosphere in this book is dark and thrilling with a pace so fast you’ll be clinging to the edge of your seat. I could not put this book down and when I had to, only to do necessary mundane functions like going to the bathroom, it was not without difficulty. This book grabs you from the moment you open the first page so be prepared for a roller coaster ride you won’t want to get off of

Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas


 *SPOILER WARNING* This review DOES contain spoilers about Heir of Fire and MAY contain spoilers about Throne of Glass and Crown of Midnight
*Takes deep breathe* Writing this review is nerve wracking for two reasons because not only is it my first review I’ve written…ever, but also because this book has left my emotions in such a tangled mess that, even a week later, I’m still trying to make sense of what I’m feeling.

Heir of Fire is undoubtedly one of my favorite books that I have ever read, especially this year. Going into this third installment, you’d assume, from the first two books that you know most of what there is to know about Celaena. NOT (and I repeat NOT) at all the case here. If you experience constant cravings for buckets of character development, this book is a Tiramisu on top of your chocolate sundae. We see her tear down every wall, every shield, every fortress she has built to protect herself from the pain she experienced when she was so young and had her whole life ripped from under her and it was, for lack of a better word, heartbreaking. You see all the guilt and pain, threatening to tear her from the inside out and how it leads to what I believe to be the turning point of her character. We finally learn the story about her past and how it eventually lead to her becoming one of the most notorious assassin in all the land. At the end of the book, I think it’s pretty evident that she is a completely different person from the one she has been in the past two books and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t excited for what’s to come.

I loved and thoroughly enjoyed Sarah’s use of flashbacks to illustrate for us what happened in Celaena’s past. Whether it be through dreams or the super creepy Valg Princes, we finally got all the puzzle pieces we needed to learn how she got to where she was. I recently went back and skimmed through Throne of Glass and Crown of Midnight and it’s funny to see how many subtle hints were being left out in plain sight that hinted to who Celaena was and her past.
She just stared at him, willing her fingers to unclench, willing air into her lungs. If it were true… No, it wasn’t true. If these people actually claimed to have met the heir to the throne, then she had to be an imposter – Crown of Midnight (85)
I just never thought much about them. She gradually but finally embraces all the pain and sorrow and uses it to finally make a stand. She’s slowly becoming a more powerful and deadlier than you could ever imagine queen (something she wanted nothing to do with in the beginning) and she’s finally ready to fight and stand for her people and her kingdom.

As I have mentioned before, the character development in this book is phenomenal. By the end of this book, she’s still the same stubborn, witty, brave young women we met in the beginning but she’s also wiser, stronger and fiercer than we’ve ever seen her and ready to fight for her people. Throughout the book, while in the beginning she wanted no part of being queen, we see that she is not proud of who she is becoming or for turning her back on and abandoning her kingdom for ten years. Yet, at the final battle, she’s finally ready to win back her land and the life she had lost that terrible night many years ago.

Now, onto the subject of NEW CHARACTERS, Celaena could not have made the transition from assassin to queen without a little help from Rowan Whitehorn, a Fae prince and also loyal servant to his and  Celaena’s manipulative aunt, Queen Maeve. While, he himself is not too eager to be helping Celaena harness her power and making her worthy of entry to her Maeve’s domain, Doranelle, so that she can get the answers she needs about the Wyrdkeys, they eventually grow on each other and share a bond so powerful I was on the floor hyperventilating for a good ten minutes. He’s the alpha male with a very strict no-nonsense attitude and I’m glad he didn’t put up with Celaena’s occasional (excuse my language) bullshit. She attacks him verbally? He throws one that will give her a black eye all the way into next week. And in the end, it’s his persistence with her that gets her to realize the full scale of her power and potential and how far she can go with it. By the end, they develop a bond so intimate (and no, not romantically) that there are literally no barriers between them, nothing. As a team, they are both fascinating and terrifying.

We are also introduced to a new awesome warrior, Aedion Ashryver, who just so happened to be Celaena’s cousin and childhood best friend. To be honest, I completely hated the guy in the beginning when we were made to believe his alliance was with the king. However, once he was found to be with the rebels, I grew to love him with all his deadly smiles, muscles, and sporadic behavior. He’s dead set on taking down the King once and for all and to see his true queen reclaim her rightful place on the throne. I firmly believe and hope that there is a reunion coming up between Celaena and Aedion.

Back to our lovely Prince and Captain back “home”, their relationship was falling apart at the end of book two and certainly did not improve in this book. Chaol is still as hesitant as ever about his position throughout the whole book and where his loyalties lie. I found myself often growing frustrated at his indecisiveness and inability to accept that Dorian and Celaena have magic. Even with that indecisiveness, his loyalties and protection lie to Dorian and Dorian only in the end. With all the events that took fold at the end, even with all the frustration, he finally chose the side he should have picked from the beginning but now, with Dorian being taken to some magic prison and Aedion in the dungeons, he and the rebels have a big task ahead of them.

Now, aside from the characters, another reason this big was a big win for me was because of the deeper in-depth view we got to see into Sarah j. Maas’s world. After the first two books, we’re used to being, strictly, within the confinement of Rifthold but this particular book was not just told from multiple characters but also multiple settings, taking us literally deeper into the darker shadows of the this epic, high fantasy world. We get to explore Wendlyn and briefly, Doranelle, as well as get clued in to the King’s darker and even more sinister plans going underway in the Ferian Gap. There we are introduced to another interesting character, Manon Blackbeak, heir of the Blackbeak Coven of the Ironteeth Witches. Other, more secondary characters also played an integral part in the story’s plot and our beloved main character’s character development. To me, the writing overall in this book, was a good step up from the last two books. I’m not saying I didn’t enjoy the previous books (I loved them just as much) but I feel the writing matured in this installment and was more realistic, making it more enjoyable.

The overall atmosphere in this book is dark and thrilling with a pace so fast you’ll be clinging to the edge of your seat. I could not put this book down and when I had to, only to do necessary mundane functions like going to the bathroom, it was not without difficulty. This book grabs you from the moment you open the first page so be prepared for a roller coaster ride you won’t want to get off of

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