Guest Review: The Whisperer by Fiona McIntosh

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Guest Review: The Whisperer by Fiona McIntoshThe Whisperer by Fiona McIntosh
Published by Knopf Books for Young Readers on April 14, 2015
Pages: 400
Format: ARC
Source: the publisher
Buy on Amazon

In this adventurous retelling of The Prince and the Pauper, the lives of a runaway royal and a carnival worker become intertwined as each is compelled to fight for his life and family. Fans of The Sixty-Eight Rooms and Ophelia and the Marvelous Boy won’t want to miss this.

Lute is a prince, next in line to the throne. Griff is a poor carnival worker who does the heavy lifting while the malevolent ringmaster orders him about. But there’s something special about Griff: he can hear the thoughts of everyone around him. And one day, he begins to connect with Lute’s mind, even though they’ve never met and are miles apart.

When Lute must run for his very life, Griff may be the only one who can help him. In a journey over land and sea, these heroes battle deadly foes and make unlikely allies, including a host of magical creatures and their caretaker, a bitter old dwarf, and a mysterious lady pirate. When the boys finally come together, they will learn they are connected in ways they could never have imagined, ways that may save them—or cost them both their lives.

A message from Meredith: Hey everyone! Today, I have True here with a guest review for The Whisperer by Fiona McIntosh

You can find Leah on Wattpad and on Twitter!

Without further adieu, here’s True’s review! Enjoy!


The Whisperer by Fiona McIntosh is about two boys from different worlds. Lute is a prince and Griff is a poor carnival worker, but Griff isn’t ordinary. He can hear the thoughts of everyone around him and that leads him him to connect with Lute’s mind. When trouble follows in the form of Lute’s uncle, Griff is the only one who can help.

I’m not gonna lie, it wasn’t the best book ever, but that’s on me. It just wasn’t my cup of tea, but I did enjoy it for the most part. The writing was really good and so was the storyline, but I just couldn’t get into it.

It kinda reminded me of the princess and the pauper, but with a different plot. If you like adventure and mythical creatures, this read is for you. There are many perspectives to the book and each character deals with different struggles and situations. Parts of the book are humorous and will make you smile like when Griff hears the thought of people around him.

Overall, the book is pretty good and I encourage fantasy/paranormal readers to pick up a copy.


Review: Long May She Reign by Rhiannon Thomas

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Long May She Reign by Rhiannon ThomasLong May She Reign by Rhiannon Thomas
Published by HarperTeen on February 21, 2017
Pages: 432
Format: Hardcover
Source: the publisher
Buy on Amazon

The Girl of Fire and Thorns meets The Queen of the Tearling in this thrilling fantasy standalone about one girl’s unexpected rise to power.

Freya was never meant be queen. Twenty third in line to the throne, she never dreamed of a life in the palace, and would much rather research in her laboratory than participate in the intrigues of court. However, when an extravagant banquet turns deadly and the king and those closest to him are poisoned, Freya suddenly finds herself on the throne.

Freya may have escaped the massacre, but she is far from safe. The nobles don’t respect her, her councillors want to control her, and with the mystery of who killed the king still unsolved, Freya knows that a single mistake could cost her the kingdom – and her life.

Freya is determined to survive, and that means uncovering the murderers herself. Until then, she can’t trust anyone. Not her advisors. Not the king’s dashing and enigmatic illegitimate son. Not even her own father, who always wanted the best for her, but also wanted more power for himself.

As Freya’s enemies close in and her loyalties are tested, she must decide if she is ready to rule and, if so, how far she is willing to go to keep the crown.

I was really excited when I first heard about this book, but also nervous. I was excited because I LOVED the title and cover (GORGEOUS, GORGEOUS cover) and the plot sounded beyond intriguing. I was nervous because I read A Wicked Thing by Rhiannon Thomas back in 2015 and it was a disaster – I didn’t connect with the characters, I was bored by the plot and I felt let down by the ending and the surprise sequel, which I did not read. But I’m all for giving authors a second chance, if their new book sounds epic. And in this case, I’m so, so glad I did! This book wasn’t without it’s issues, but it was overall an enjoyable read and a HUGE improvement from A Wicked Thing.

First of all, can we talk about the fact that this book is a YA fantasy stand-alone?? How often does THAT happen?? It’s a nice break from all the fantasy trilogies and series out there. But after reaching the end of the book, I must say.. I actually wish there WAS going to be a sequel. This first book was basically all about securing Freya’s reign and finding the murderer. But now that the murderer has been dealt with, I’d love to see Freya’s ACTUAL reign, see what kind of a queen she’ll be. I still have a lot of questions that I want answered!

Freya herself was epic and incredibly relatable. She was a bit timid in the beginning and maybe even a bit of a puppet for her advisors – but only until she regained her footing, made some allies and really had a chance to let everything that had happened sink in. I mean, I don’t blame her for her confusion in the beginning – she was twenty third in line to the throne! She never imagined she’d be queen! It was a LOT to take in. But once she accepted her fate, she really began to bloom. This is VERY specific, but in my opinion, you see a clear and obvious change in Freya on page 342. At that point, you can truly see that she has grown into a more confident woman who knows what kind of queen she wants to be. At the same time, she did make some rash decisions that could have had severe consequences. But I think that was all part of the learning curve.

There were a LOT of secondary characters. I read the first 100 pages of this book really fast and then didn’t pick it up for two days (because life, not because of the book), and I actually had to go back to page one and skim 130+ pages to remind myself of who everyone was. But I don’t want to say that’s the fault of the book, necessarily. I think it was because of my reading situation.

I really liked Madeleine Wolff and William Fitzroy, but I had a very difficult time trusting them – along with Holt – for obvious reasons. I’m intrigued with the way all of their stories ended, though, and would love to see what happens to them next in a sequel.

Overall, I’m really, really happy I picked this up. Everything I couldn’t stand about A Wicked Thing was much improved in Long May She Reign. Thomas’s writing was SO much better and I liked the characters a LOT more. Though the book was still a bit long (in my opinion), it was a much faster read, with far better pacing, and it held my attention way more. I’m really glad I gave Rhiannon Thomas a second chance and I’m very excited to see what she does next.

I definitely recommend this to fantasy fans, especially if you love reading about royalty, intrigue and a good murder mystery!


Review: Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones (Blog Tour)

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones (Blog Tour)Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones
Published by Thomas Dunne on February 7, 2017
Pages: 448
Source: the publisher
Buy on Amazon

Beware the goblin men and the wares they sell.

All her life, nineteen-year-old Liesl has heard tales of the beautiful, mysterious Goblin King. He is the Lord of Mischief, the Ruler Underground, and the muse around which her music is composed. Yet, as Liesl helps shoulder the burden of running her family’s inn, her dreams of composition and childish fancies about the Goblin King must be set aside in favor of more practical concerns.

But when her sister Käthe is taken by the goblins, Liesl journeys to their realm to rescue her sister and return her to the world above. The Goblin King agrees to let Käthe go—for a price. The life of a maiden must be given to the land, in accordance with the old laws. A life for a life, he says. Without sacrifice, nothing good can grow. Without death, there can be no rebirth. In exchange for her sister’s freedom, Liesl offers her hand in marriage to the Goblin King. He accepts.

Down in the Underground, Liesl discovers that the Goblin King still inspires her—musically, physically, emotionally. Yet even as her talent blossoms, Liesl’s life is slowly fading away, the price she paid for becoming the Goblin King’s bride. As the two of them grow closer, they must learn just what it is they are each willing to sacrifice: her life, her music, or the end of the world.

Hey everyone! I’m BEYOND excited to be on the blog tour for Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones (February 7th 2017 by Thomas Dunne). If you follow my blog/social media, you know how much I LOVED this book and how obsessed I am with it! I’m so excited for book two, I don’t know how I’ll survive until next year!!!

Anyway, enough babbling! Time for my review! Enjoy!


This book was absolutely beautiful and completely intoxicating; it left me feeling breathless, like I was spinning and dizzy and knew I should stop, but couldn’t put it down. It spoke to me in ways a book never has – and I’ve been a reader all my life, so that’s a LOT of books that never spoke to me such as this one did. I was completely absorbed in the world, writing and characters.

Liesl is passionate, rash and impulsive, prone to fits of rage, to highs and lows. To self-sabotage and self-doubt. The author said something about Liesl in her newsletter and I can 100% see it. I won’t say what it is for fear of spoilers, but it explains so much and I think it fits perfectly. This thing, it’s a part of her and makes her who she is.

The Goblin King. The Lord of Mischief. The Ruler Underground. He was a complete mystery, yet he was fascinating. I wanted to know everything about him and, though I finished this book ages ago, I still do. I can’t get him out of my head. One second, he was the Goblin King – distant, cold, foreboding. And the next, he was the boy Liesl used to know – kind, caring, passionate. He was also stubborn and his moods mirrored Liesl’s, causing them to butt heads quite often. Yet even when they were butting heads, there was undeniable chemistry between them.

The writing in this book is so gorgeous and elegant. It has an old-time feel to it that I love. It was described as being based on the movie Labyrinth, but it also seems to hint at a certain Greek Myth. I don’t know for sure if I’m right or not on this, but if I am, then I’m even more in love with this book than I originally thought I was. You guys know I love Greek mythology more than anything! (I also won’t say which Greek Myth I think it is to avoid spoilers – you’ll have to read the book and see for yourself!)

I can understand why some people didn’t enjoy this book – Again, it was described as being a Labyrinth retelling and I think many people expected something closer to the movie. But in my opinion, this book is loosely based on the movie and if you think too much of the movie while reading this, you might feel a bit let down. I urge you to go into this book knowing it’s not exactly the movie. It has hints of the movie, but it is its own thing entirely, as well. If you do that, I think you’ll really, really enjoy it.

So.. *Takes shuddering breath.* I really can’t even think what else to say. This book really just blew me away, more than I ever imagined a book could. More than I thought this book could. I expected to love it, but I didn’t expect it to speak to my soul. I never thought any book would ever do that. This is one I will cherish for many years to come. One that I have a feeling I’ll want to re-read often. I (obviously) absolutely can’t wait for the second book. For more interactions between Liesl and the Goblin King. For more background and history regarding the Goblin King. For the reveal of his true name. And for so much more than that, which I can’t even put into words.

Obviously, I MORE than recommend this book. It’s the one I’ll be telling EVERYONE they should read. It’s by far one of the most amazing books I’ve read in a long time. It’s up there with Harry Potter and with Sarah J. Maas’s A Court of Thorns and Roses series, of which I recently finished A Court of Mist and Fury – another book that I gushed about and highly recommend. These two were by far my favorite reads of 2016 (because even though Wintersong is a 2017 debut, I read it in 2016) and I will never stop recommending them, as you can see in my 2016 End of Year Book Survey, in which you can see how often I recommended these two books!

So… Go buy this book! Go read this book! Go LOVE this book! Seriously, I can’t recommend it enough!


About the Author:
S. Jae-Jones, called JJ, is an artist, an adrenaline junkie, and the author of Wintersong, forthcoming from Thomas Dunne in February 2017.

Born and raised in sunny Los Angeles, she lived in New York City for ten years before relocating down to Dixie, where she is comfortably growing fat on grits and barbecue. When not writing, she can be found rock-climbing, skydiving, taking photographs, drawing pictures, and dragging her dog on ridiculously long hikes.

Website | Twitter

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And now for the giveaway! Three lucky winners will receive a finished copy of WINTERSONG (US Only)! To enter, fill out the Rafflecopter below!

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Blog Tour Schedule:

Week 1:
2/13: The Irish Banana Review – Review
2/14: That Artsy Reader Girl – Mood Board
2/15: Pandora’s Books – Review
2/16: Swoony Boys Podcast – This Or That
2/17: Krista’s Dust Jacket – Review

Week 2:
2/20: Emily Reads Everything – Q&A
2/21: Quite the Novel Idea – Review
2/22: A Binding Attraction – Makeup Inspirations
2/23: Fiction Fare – Review
2/24: Icey Designs – Quote Candy


Review: The Edge of Everything by Jeff Giles

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: The Edge of Everything by Jeff GilesThe Edge of Everything by Jeff Giles
Published by Bloomsbury Childrens Books on January 31, 2017
Pages: 368
Format: ARC
Source: the publisher
Buy on Amazon

For the perfect love, what would you be willing to lose?

It’s been a shattering year for seventeen-year-old Zoe, who’s still reeling from her father's shockingly sudden death in a caving accident and her neighbors’ mysterious disappearance from their own home. Then on a terrifying sub-zero, blizzardy night in Montana, she and her brother are brutally attacked in a cabin in the woods—only to be rescued by a mysterious bounty hunter they call X.

X is no ordinary bounty hunter. He is from a hell called the Lowlands, sent to claim the soul of Zoe’s evil attacker and others like him. X is forbidden from revealing himself to anyone other than his prey, but he casts aside the Lowlands’ rules for Zoe. As they learn more about their colliding worlds, they begin to question the past, their fate, and their future.

I really wanted to love this book – the premise was epic – but I really struggled to get through it. almost right from page one. The book is divided into four sections and section one was the biggest struggle. It was slow, the writing started off bland and I couldn’t connect AT ALL to the characters. Curiosity pushed me to continue reading and, once I got to section two, it started to pick up. I was excited, thinking it was a smart decision to push forward because things were picking up.

And then I got to page 218. And man, did I struggle. I was once again close to DNFing. I skimmed more than I read all the way through page 239 and then I tried reading again. And then the end of section three and all of section four picked up again. I actually enjoyed the ending, though it was completely predictable.

So.. was there any good in this? A little bit, actually. I loved the caving stuff. That was intriguing. I LOVED Ripper, more than any other character. I really want more of her – I want to learn about her background, who she was before. I want to see what it’s like when the Lowlands send her for a soul, as opposed to when they send X. She was just completely fascinating and I’d totally read an entire book about her.

I did love the sections/chapters that were from X’s POV, as opposed to Zoe’s. Only because I loved seeing and learning about the Lowlands and the lords. I’d much prefer a book that focused more on the Lowlands than the Overworld. Other than that, I don’t really have anything to say about Zoe and X. I didn’t connect with them, I didn’t ship them and they didn’t really interest me.

The biggest issues I had with this book delve a bit into spoiler territory, but it’s also a bit of a trigger warning so I feel I need to mention it. The man that X is after in the beginning is Not A Nice Man, as we are shown in very painful ways. The two things that almost caused me to DNF, above everything else, were: 1) the way he treated the two dogs in the book, and 2) An insinuated rape threat. Seriously, almost every time I read a book with a female protagonist that’s written by a man, there’s either an insinuated rape threat or an attempted rape scene. This happened in Harmony House and another book I read around the same time, but I’m blanking on what it was – and I may have DNF’d, because I can’t find a review of it in my files. So yeah.. Male authors: Stop doing this.

But yeah… Like, I KNOW this guy was supposed to be evil but it was almost like the author had to make him over-the-top evil so we’d see just how evil he was and why he deserved what was coming to him and it was just TOO MUCH. And it nearly made me DNF barely a few chapters in.

So… Yeah, that’s about it. I can’t think of anything else to say. I’m sad I didn’t enjoy this more. It had SO MUCH potential. But it just wasn’t my kind of book. I can’t say I’d recommend it because I really didn’t enjoy it, but I know a LOT of people loved it, so maybe give it a shot and decide for yourself.


Review: Blood of Wonderland by Colleen Oakes

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Blood of Wonderland by Colleen OakesBlood of Wonderland by Colleen Oakes
Series: Queen of Hearts Saga #2
Published by HarperTeen on January 31, 2017
Pages: 336
Source: the publisher
Buy on Amazon

Dinah has been exiled from Wonderland. The vicious father she always feared has framed her for the brutal murder of her brother and turned the kingdom against her.

Now hiding in the lush and mysterious Twisted Wood with only her war steed at her side, Dinah is faced with a choice: leave Wonderland forever or stay and fight her father for the throne.

When a chance encounter with one of her father’s long-lost enemies brings Dinah more allies than she ever could have imagined, war starts to feel inevitable. But before Dinah can lead her people into combat, she must confront certain truths about her heart and her destiny—no matter how dark those truths may be.

Revolution is rising in Wonderland. Dinah’s battle has begun.

I absolutely loved Queen of Hearts, the first book in this trilogy. So it pains me to say that Blood of Wonderland was a bit of a let-down. Oakes’ writing is amazing and the imagery is lush and beautiful, and the story itself was a fast read; however, the first half was absolute filler/Second Book Syndrome.

Dinah was a great character in Queen of Hearts – fierce and fiery, if not a bit spoiled. Her character development in Blood of Wonderland, however, was amazing. She becomes very self-aware of the privileged life she had. She goes through a lot, learns a lot and comes out of it ready to fight for her crown in a war that could cost her everything.

I can’t say much about Wardley without spoilers. When we left him in Queen of Hearts, he was in a very precarious position and we don’t learn his fate for a very long time. All I’m going to say is this: What I said about him in my Queen of Hearts review was pretty much right on point.

As I mentioned in my review of Queen of Hearts, the Cheshire Cat is an incredibly devious and self-serving character, someone you wanted to trust but knew you couldn’t. In Blood of Wonderland, he was… Well, I still don’t fully trust Cheshire, but I’m very intrigued by him. Also, WTH was with that revelation he dropped on Dinah?!?! I actually believe his story, but.. Whoa… I also don’t fully trust Gorrann but he’s very protective of Dinah and I like that. I WANT to trust them both, I just don’t know yet if I can.

I was totally intrigued by the depiction of the Caterpillar in this book. I can’t say too much without spoilers, but he was pretty intense and maybe a little crazy.. Possibly? Sort of..

One thing that concerned me was the depiction of the Yurkei tribes. I could be wrong, but it seemed they were supposed to be Native American-like in their style and behavior; however, it was done in a stereotypical way and could be viewed as problematic. Again, I could be wrong in my assumptions/evaluations of this, but I didn’t feel I could write a full, comprehensive review without mentioning this.

The ending was intense and curious. I’m definitely excited for book three. Since book two was mainly filler, I’m dying for some action and I think we’ll see a LOT of action in book three as the war comes to a head and the battle begins. To the Battlefield we go!


Review: To Catch a Killer by Sheryl Scarborough

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: To Catch a Killer by Sheryl ScarboroughTo Catch a Killer by Sheryl Scarborough
Series: Erin Blake #1
Published by Tor Teen on February 7, 2017
Pages: 320
Format: Hardcover
Source: the publisher
Buy on Amazon

Erin Blake has one of those names. A name that, like Natalee Holloway or Elizabeth Smart, is inextricably linked to a grisly crime. As a toddler, Erin survived for three days alongside the corpse of her murdered mother, and the case—which remains unsolved—fascinated a nation. Her father's identity unknown, Erin was taken in by her mother's best friend and has become a relatively normal teen in spite of the looming questions about her past.

Fourteen years later, Erin is once again at the center of a brutal homicide when she finds the body of her biology teacher. When questioned by the police, Erin tells almost the whole truth, but never voices her suspicions that her mother's killer has struck again in order to protect the casework she's secretly doing on her own.

Inspired by her uncle, an FBI agent, Erin has ramped up her forensic hobby into a full-blown cold-case investigation. This new murder makes her certain she's close to the truth, but when all the evidence starts to point the authorities straight to Erin, she turns to her longtime crush (and fellow suspect) Journey Michaels to help her crack the case before it's too late.

To Catch a Killer was a mystery thrill-ride of a book. It started off a bit slow, but once things picked up, I was constantly on my toes, suspicious of everyone and trying to follow the evidence. This book was billed as being NCIS meets Veronica Mars and I could DEFINITELY see the Veronica Mars comparisons.

I was a little indifferent to Erin in the beginning. The more immersed she became in her investigation, the more I liked her. I could see things through her eyes, as if I was the investigator trying to solve the mystery. I loved the way she threw herself into the investigation, committed and willing to do whatever she had to to get answers. I also really liked her relationship with Journey. It didn’t feel like insta-love. It was organic, a slow but steady progression from friends with crushes to more.

I’m not sure how I feel about Spam and Lysa. At times, they were amazing, supportive friends. At other times, they were really frustrating and treated Erin like she was purposely leaving them out. I definitely loved their involvement in the end, but I’m not sure if it makes up for their earlier behavior.

Rachel reminded me of Jenna from The Vampire Diaries (specifically from season one). She was trying so hard to parent but flailing helplessly. Serious question: why are adults never honest with their kids, especially in YA novels? Why do they always think they know best? Why do they always keep secrets? It’s such a tired cliche and it grated on my nerves a bit.

I really loved Victor. Erin needed someone on her side, someone who listened to her and believed her. Rachel tried, but she was a bit clueless. She was also dealing with her own thoughts and feelings and I think she was a bit stuck in the past – for obvious reasons, of course, but I think it clouded her judgement where Erin was concerned. Victor came into the picture just when Erin needed him the most. And then the way his story ended? That thing and the other thing but spoilers but WHOA. I REALLY need there to be a sequel so we can see if Erin’s suspicions are correct!

There are two characters I really want to talk about, but it’s hard to without spoilers. Let’s just say, I was very suspicious of these two characters and I wasn’t surprised when we finally learned the truth in the end.

My favorite thing about this book – and this is going to sound so weird, I don’t even know if it’ll make sense – was the tone. It completely reminded me of a 90s/00s teen novel, and I LOVED IT! It reminded me of an old-school Caroline B. Cooney novel (The Face on the Milk Carton) and of Sara Shepard’s The Lying Game series.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. It was fun playing detective alongside Erin. The forensics aspects were especially epic. I’m a huge, huge forensics buff, so this was definitely my favorite part! I really hope there’s a sequel because that ending was crazy and I NEED ANSWERS! So yeah, I definitely recommend this one to fans of Veronica Mars, CSI, NCIS – Basically, if you’re a fan of ANY of the crime/forensics procedurals, I think you’ll really love this one!


Review: Caraval by Stephanie Garber

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Caraval by Stephanie GarberCaraval by Stephanie Garber
Series: Caraval #1
Published by Flatiron Books on January 31, 2017
Pages: 407
Format: ARC
Source: the publisher
Buy on Amazon

Whatever you've heard about Caraval, it doesn't compare to the reality. It's more than just a game or a performance. It's the closest you'll ever find to magic in this world . . .

Welcome, welcome to Caraval―Stephanie Garber’s sweeping tale of two sisters who escape their ruthless father when they enter the dangerous intrigue of a legendary game.

Scarlett has never left the tiny island where she and her beloved sister, Tella, live with their powerful, and cruel, father. Now Scarlett’s father has arranged a marriage for her, and Scarlett thinks her dreams of seeing Caraval, the far-away, once-a-year performance where the audience participates in the show, are over.

But this year, Scarlett’s long-dreamt of invitation finally arrives. With the help of a mysterious sailor, Tella whisks Scarlett away to the show. Only, as soon as they arrive, Tella is kidnapped by Caraval’s mastermind organizer, Legend. It turns out that this season’s Caraval revolves around Tella, and whoever finds her first is the winner.

Scarlett has been told that everything that happens during Caraval is only an elaborate performance. But she nevertheless becomes enmeshed in a game of love, heartbreak, and magic with the other players in the game. And whether Caraval is real or not, she must find Tella before the five nights of the game are over, a dangerous domino effect of consequences is set off, and her sister disappears forever.

Caraval was a twisty-turny book. It kept me on the edge of my seat, never knowing who to trust or what to believe. Honestly, I finished it yesterday and I’m STILL not sure what to make of what happened!! This book reminded me of a combination of Wintersong (because of the sisters) and Fever by Lauren DeStefano (because of the “carnival” and the dark and gritty plot).

The world of Caraval was absolutely gorgeous and breath-taking – the island it takes place on, Isla de los sueños (the island of dreams) is up there with Wonderland and Oz, in my opinion. It’s magical and fantastical and I’d love to go there and experience it for myself.

As I mentioned, the sisters in this – Scarlett and Tella – reminded me very much of Liesl and Kath from Wintersong, respectively. Both Scarlet and Liesl are headstrong and overprotective. Each ends up on a bizarre adventure in an attempt to save their sister. Both Tella and Kath are carefree and a bit immature. They don’t think about the consequences of their actions. The one big difference? There’s more to Tella than meets the eye.

As for the other characters… Julian is cocky, sarcastic and a complete mystery. I was constantly shuffling back and forth, wondering if I could trust him or not. And even after finishing the book, there’s still something about him that’s nagging at me. I really wanted to like Dante. He was so kind in the beginning, but then certain things that happened later on had me rethinking everything he said and did. I think I liked Aiko, but I can’t be sure because we didn’t really get to know her very well. I really hope we learn more about her in the sequel because I think there’s more to her than we know. I REALLY wanted to like Count Nicholas d’Arcy. His letters had me hopeful, but then.. Sigh. Basically, I didn’t trust ANYONE at all and I’m dying for book two because I can’t wait to see where their stories all go next. Finally, obviously, I HATED their father with a passion.

The only negative thing I really have to say is this book started off REALLY slow. Like.. For me, it honestly didn’t pick up until about page 221. But once it DID pick up, it didn’t slow down again until the very last page – and then I was devastated that it was the last page and now I CANNOT wait for book two!!! That cliffhanger was INSANE!!!

Overall, if you can push through the first half and stick with it, the second half is AMAZING and mind-blowing. You won’t know who to trust, you won’t know what to believe – and you won’t want it to end.


Review: Batgirl at Super Hero High by Lisa Yee (Blog Tour)

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Batgirl at Super Hero High by Lisa Yee (Blog Tour)Batgirl at Super Hero High by Lisa Yee
Series: DC Super Hero Girls #3
Published by Random House Books for Young Readers on January 3rd 2017
Pages: 240
Format: Hardcover
Source: the publisher
Buy on Amazon

Get your cape on with the DC Super Hero Girls the unprecedented new Super Hero universe especially for girls! Readers of all ages can fly high with the all-new adventures of Wonder Woman, Supergirl, Batgirl, and some of the world s most iconic female super heroes as high schoolers!

Batgirl has always hidden in the shadows but does she have what it takes to stand in the spotlight at Super Hero High?

Barbara Gordon has always been an off-the-charts, just-forget-about-the-test super-genius and tech whiz, and then she gets the offer of a lifetime when Supergirl recognizes that Barbara s talents make her an ideal candidate for Super Hero High. Donning the cape and cowl, Barbara Gordon becomes Batgirl, ready to train at the most elite school on the planet, next to some of the most powerful teenagers in the galaxy. She s always had the heart of a hero . . . but now she ll have to prove that she can be one. Good thing she loves a challenge!

Award-winning author Lisa Yee brings mystery, thrills, and laughs to this groundbreaking series that follows DC Comics most iconic female Super Heroes and Super-Villains. Move over Batman and Superman the DC Super Hero Girls are ready to save the day and have fun doing it!

Praise for DC Super Hero Girls:
Sure to have wide appeal, this book is a solid option to balance collections saturated with male superheroes. - School Library Journal

Hey everyone! Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Batgirl at Super Hero High by Lisa Yee (January 3, 2017 – Random House Books for Young Readers). This book was an incredibly fun read, so I’m really excited to be a part of this blog tour! I hope you enjoy my review!


I’ve loved every book in this series so much and they just keep getting better! The plot was intriguing, the characters are likable/relatable and the writing is great! I really love that Batgirl doesn’t have super powers, that she’s a regular girl struggling to be a super hero while staying true to herself. It makes her more relatable and it makes you want to root for her even more.

I’m getting more and more intrigued by all the “super heroes” who become villains. With some of them, you can tell they’re not super hero material because they’re a bit (or more) mean and nasty. They don’t use their powers for good. But then others, like Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy, are kind, funny and have so many friends. It just makes me wonder what the tipping point was for them. What made them “turn” evil? On a similar note, I still desperately want Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn books – Especially since, for the first time, Harley Quinn showed a different side of herself, more like the “grown-up” version of her we know from the DC Comics.

All the tech stuff in this book was crazy! Also, very realistic – in the sense that, we rely so heavily on technology, it would be scary if it completely shut down or starting acting haywire. It really makes you stop and think!

As I mentioned in my reviews for Wonder Woman and Supergirl, as someone who didn’t devour the DC comics, I was definitely a little bit behind on who everyone was and what some of the references were – though it’s getting easier to remember everyone with every book I read. As I’ve mentioned in the previous reviews, I think this book’s level of entertainment would have been upped a notch if I HAD read the comiccs, but I never felt like I was at a disadvantage because I hadn’t read them.

The ending of this book was the most intriguing thus far, with a very puzzling cliffhanger that has me eager for the next book! It was a short, fast read that I highly recommend to anyone who loves the DC comics, as well as to anyone who wants to get into the comics, but who wants a quick and easy introduction to the characters first!


Lisa YeeAbout the Author:
Lisa Yee’s debut novel, Millicent Min, Girl Genius, won the prestigious Sid Fleischman Humor Award. With over two million books in print, her other novels for young people include Stanford Wong Flunks Big-Time, So Totally Emily Ebers, Absolutely Maybe, and a series about a 4th grader, Bobby vs. Girls (Accidentally) and Bobby the Brave (Sometimes).

Lisa is also the author of American Girl’s Kanani books and Good Luck, Ivy, and this year’s Lea Clark novels. Her novel, Warp Speed, is about a Star Trek geek who gets beat up everyday at school. A Thurber House Children’s Writer-in-Residence, Lisa’s books have been named a NPR Best Summer Read, Sports Illustrated Kids Hot Summer Read, and USA Today Critics’ Top Pick.

The Kidney Hypothetical – Or How To Ruin Your Life In Seven Days is Lisa’s latest novel for teens. Lisa’s 2016 books include the DC Super Hero Girls middle grade novel series and the American Girl, 2016 Girl of the Year books.

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Review: Ever the Hunted by Erin Summerill

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Ever the Hunted by Erin SummerillEver the Hunted by Erin Summerill
Series: Clash of Kingdoms #1
Published by HMH Books for Young Readers on December 27, 2016
Pages: 400
Format: ARC
Source: the publisher
Buy on Amazon

Seventeen year-old Britta Flannery is at ease only in the woods with her dagger and bow. She spends her days tracking criminals alongside her father, the legendary bounty hunter for the King of Malam—that is, until her father is murdered. Now outcast and alone and having no rights to her father’s land or inheritance, she seeks refuge where she feels most safe: the Ever Woods. When Britta is caught poaching by the royal guard, instead of facing the noose she is offered a deal: her freedom in exchange for her father’s killer.

However, it’s not so simple.

The alleged killer is none other than Cohen McKay, her father’s former apprentice. The only friend she’s ever known. The boy she once loved who broke her heart. She must go on a dangerous quest in a world of warring kingdoms, mad kings, and dark magic to find the real killer. But Britta wields more power than she knows. And soon she will learn what has always made her different will make her a daunting and dangerous force.

This book was a highly anticipated one for me. And I really enjoyed it… until I didn’t. The beginning was slow, but once it picked up, I really fell into the story. And then a little over half-way through the book, the plot and pace come to a screeching halt and it just dragged. AND THEN, 50 pages from the end, something happened and it just pushed me over the edge. It’s a tired trope that I’m sick of seeing in YA. I can’t explain what it is without spoilers, but if you’ve read the book, you’ll know what I’m talking about. And if you haven’t, you will once you DO (or if you do) read it.

There were a small number of intriguing plot twists, but other than that, there was nothing interesting about this book. I wasn’t a huge fan of the characters, either. And you guys know how character-centric I am, so that was probably the biggest reason I didn’t enjoy this book. I wasn’t feeling the love between the main characters at all. They felt more like just friends and the back and forth with them was ridiculous too. It was frustrating and unnecessary, and seemed like it was only meant to drag things out and add tension where there was none.

There were also a LOT of “duh” moments where something was SO OBVIOUS, it was impossibly to understand how the characters didn’t realize sooner – especially where Britta and her background and “destiny” are involved.

The feel and atmosphere of this book – the woods and the hunting, etc – kind of reminded me of the Grisha trilogy. Even the characters had similarities to the characters in the Grisha trilogy. But the Grisha trilogy is better, IMO. But I guess you MIGHT like this book if you liked the Grisha trilogy… Maybe?

I still gave this 3 stars because I did enjoy the first half of the book and the few plot twists that happened. The author’s writing is gorgeous, as well. But the plot and pacing were slow and drawn out and just not as enjoyable as I’d originally hoped.

Do I recommend this one? I honestly can’t say. I don’t want to turn anyone away from reading it, but this isn’t one I’d ever really suggest if someone asked me for book recommendations. If someone asked me how I enjoyed it, I’d have to be honest and say it wasn’t my cup of tea.

So.. short review was short. But that’s really all I have to say about this one. I was highly anticipating it and I feel very disappointed now. I’m not sure if I’ll read book two or not. It depends on the plot and if any trusted friends read and enjoy it.


Review: My Lady Jane by Brodi Ashton, Cynthia Hand and Jodi Meadows

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: My Lady Jane by Brodi Ashton, Cynthia Hand and Jodi MeadowsMy Lady Jane by Brodi Ashton, Cynthia Hand, Jodi Meadows
Series: The Lady Janies #1
Published by HarperTeen on June 7, 2016
Pages: 494
Format: ARC
Source: the publisher
Buy on Amazon

Edward (long live the king) is the King of England. He’s also dying, which is inconvenient, as he’s only sixteen and he’d much rather be planning for his first kiss than considering who will inherit his crown…

Jane (reads too many books) is Edward’s cousin, and far more interested in books than romance. Unfortunately for Jane, Edward has arranged to marry her off to secure the line of succession. And there’s something a little odd about her intended…

Gifford (call him G) is a horse. That is, he’s an Eðian (eth-y-un, for the uninitiated). Every day at dawn he becomes a noble chestnut steed—but then he wakes at dusk with a mouthful of hay. It’s all very undignified.

The plot thickens as Edward, Jane, and G are drawn into a dangerous conspiracy. With the fate of the kingdom at stake, our heroes will have to engage in some conspiring of their own. But can they pull off their plan before it’s off with their heads?

I finished this book ages ago and then fell into a reviewing slump. I’m FINALLY getting around to reviewing it now, but forgive me if I’ve forgotten some things and I’m not as eloquent as usual. I’ll do my best!

So… I waited WAY too long to read this book! I’m so sorry I didn’t read it when it first came out, because it was amazing. The history – though heavily fictionalized – was incredibly intriguing. The writing and dialogue were beyond perfect – never has a book made me laugh out loud as hard as this one! Though this was my first Jodi Meadows book, I’ve been a fan of Brodi Ashton and Cynthia Hand for a long time, so I knew it would be incredible just from being a fan of their previous books.

I’m normally very character-driven when I read, but I think I gave this book a bit more leeway in that department than normal because, while I loved the characters so much, I also felt a bit detached from them. Maybe because they’re real – if not slightly fictionalized – historical figures and it’s harder to get attached when you know – for the most part – their fates? I’m not 100% sure if that’s it or not, but I did still love the characters and I did still care about them and their fates.. Just in a bit more of a detached way.

If you’ve followed my blog and Twitter for awhile, you know one of my biggest current obsessions is Reign and Mary Queen of Scots. So, of course, her cameo was one of my absolute favorite things! Like, it was perfection. Of course, I completely pictured everyone at the French Court as their respective Reign characters, haha. But in all seriousness, I demand that Cynthia, Brodi and Jodi write a book about Mary Queen of Scots. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE!!!!!!!! NEED NEED NEED!!!!!!!

This book was also hilarious. The dialogue, the jokes, the horse. Yes, the horse. No, I won’t elaborate. Except to share this quote:

“Was that a horse joke?”

If that doesn’t convince you to read this, nothing will.

The ending was incredibly satisfying. And I’ve since learned that Cynthia, Brodi and Jodi are going to write more books, My Plain Jane and My Calamity Jane, both of which I’m SUPER excited for! But if we got a Mary Queen of Scots story…. *Coughs* Just saying…

Anyway, I highly recommend this if you’re a fan of Cynthia, Brodi and/or Jodi and their previous books. I also highly recommend it to fans of historical/fictionalized historical books.