A blog dedicated to reviewing and promoting the books I love.
A Note: I schedule all my reviews months in advance and at the time of reading this book and writing this review there was no mention that it was a reverse harem story in the title or in the description of this novel.
This was quite a short book and I don't know how to feel about it. It was overall entertaining, but it wasn't mind-blowing. It was exactly what I was looking for at the time though.
I liked Allura as a character. She tries to be strong but she's not there yet. She makes up for that with intelligence and a little spunk. I'm curious as to what she is and it's complications in future books.
I liked the three men that rescued her, though I couldn't tell them apart for the life of me. They were all helpful and sweet to her, but no one left a lasting impression on me. I hope that changes in the other books in this series.
I found out, a little too late, that apparently this is a reverse-harem series (I.E. one girl, multiple guys). There was nothing romantic in this novel, which made me happy because reverse-harem stories aren't my thing. I'm hesitant to continue on in this series after finding that out, though the author doesn't mention it anywhere. I'm just confused at this point. Overall though this was an interesting book and the story was set up well.
My Favorite Quotes:
"You need to understand that some humans are equally as evil (...)."
"People wander out there, searching for something better, and never find it."
"That's the problem with legends. While sometimes they hold a hint of truth, it's hard to sort through all that nonsense."
* For this review I decided to have different ratings for the story and the GraphicAudio narration.
This series has become the Mageri series all over again for me. It's like I'm about to witness a car crash happen right in front of me and I can't decide whether I want to look away or not. This author is amazing at leaving somewhat big problems unsolved, which makes the curiosity in me foam at the mouth for answers.
Dante is a wreck in this novel. She's reasonably upset by how the last book ended and decides that throwing herself into her work is the best escape, for the time being. I can follow her train of thought, but having Jase (I finally learned her ex's name!) live with her was very strange. I didn't understand the dynamic because she seemed to never have made up her mind about him. One moment she wanted to be comforted by him and the next she would only communicate with him in sarcastic comments and sassy retorts. I wanted to shake her and tell her to grow a pair for h*lls sake (pun intended).
I wasn't upset by how things ended up with Jase. I didn't like him in the first novel and the part he played in this book was lackluster at best. I just wish he hadn't given up the "family business" for Dante out of the blue. She wasn't worth all that trouble and was ungrateful to boot, though let's consider she never even asked him to do anything of that nature much less stay with her.
I wish this book had focused solely on the Jafermel plot line. The mystery didn't capture my attention. Every other minute I kept thinking about Jaf. As much as this adventure gave me an idea of how traumatic Dante's childhood was, I would rather have had her on a wild goose chase out of desperation for Jaf then have her handed the hint from the Devil himself (which was cheesy at best).
The end felt like she was saying a permanent goodbye to her friends. I didn't understand why the secrecy in relation to Jafermel. I still have no idea what the heck Dante is and it's starting to lose my interest. The only thing that keeps me coming back to this series is the GraphicAudio book.
Book Rating: 3 Stars
Graphic Audio Book Review:
This was just as amazing as the first one. The creep factor got turned up so high with this particular storyline and I loved it. The hyena laughs and the ghostly "You Must Remember!"'s got under my skin. It was very well produced and I look forward to my next adventure with these audio books.
Graphic Audio Rating: 5 Stars
This was a very cute story, but I wanted more than what I got with this. I wanted this story to have more world building. It's inferred and mentioned here and there that this is a very misogynistic society in which women are a commodity to be owned and breed, but other than that I come up blank. I wanted to know more about how their world is run, how the alphas become alphas, how and why they still decide on keeping this strict society in this day and age. I would have loved to have gotten little excerpts of their "law" books at the beginning of each chapter as a fun little tidbit about their world.
Kensy is an awesome character. She's a rebel in their society, but in actuality, she just wants to be free to be herself and to not have to stand up to this perfect image of girls in this society. She also hates how they pit girls against girls for no other reason than it's been done in the last few centuries so why stop now kind of mindset. I disliked how a lot of people would call her crazy. That word shouldn't be used to refer to anyone. So she doesn't fit into their "norm" so she must have something wrong upstairs? Give me a break.
I wasn't buying what Slade was putting down. He was one of the characters that felt very erratic and two dimensional. I understand that him being unpredictable was within the scope of his character, but it never felt real. He would talk about all this trama his alpha put him through in the past, but would never give me enough specifics for me to decide if I could sympathize and justify his actions or not. Everything felt on the surface and that took away from the story for me.
The adults in this novel were horrendously evil and rude. Though one of them did have a change of heart out of nowhere in the middle of the novel. I don't understand or like this trope in books, but it did work for this story considering the world the author was trying to flesh out.
Overall this was a cute and quick read. The story moved along at a nice pace and though I disliked the way the love interest would flip-flop on being all in or not everything ended beautifully.
My Favorite Quotes:
"The things we deal with, the things we go through, change us. Lige shapes us. But I don't believe for a single second that the changes go so deep that we lose ourselves."
"I am worth more than the blood in my veins. I'm not a commodity for you to use in an effort to increase your standing."
"You're not quite the monster you seem to think you are."
This story was way too easily predictable. I guessed the finale plot twist less than halfway through the story. That does not an interesting book make. A few years ago Jennifer Armentrout used to be on my auto-buy list. I can't say that about her in the present. I've tried reading the past few novels she's released and most end up as a DNF.
The heroine (Ivy) was so bland. She had this air of bad*ssness that surrounded her, but she was an open tomb when it came to world-ending secrets to her so-called BFF. She would constantly put herself in dumb and dangerous situations even after being explicitly told not to. If all that was for the sake of moving a plotline along, I'm sorry but I'm not impressed.
Ren was a nice guy overall. He was sweet and caring despite having gone through a traumatic childhood. At times I found myself thinking that he was tooth decay sweet and that only made me distance myself from the story.
I still don't understand what "integral" part Tink plays in this story. It's alluded to that he "knows more than he's letting on", but he only discloses small tidbits after the fact. If he's this well of information why the heck doesn't he bring it up before someone almost dies?
My exceptionally high expectations of this author lead me astray for this novel. It's a nice overall story that ended on a dreaded cliffhanger that I wouldn't necessarily recommend, but I also wouldn't dissuade someone who wanted to read it. In conclusion, this novel, in particular, wasn't for me.
I've read a few other books by this author and I like her writing style. However, when the subject is this book all I can say is that it didn't do it for me. I had too many problems with who the characters were as a whole (personality wise) that made me despise so much of story.
Kennedy was a pushover and I learned to hate her halfway through the book. I don't understand why she would bend over backwards to help people that were obviously using her for their benefit only. By the end, she seemed to have learned her lesson and developed a backbone, but that was too late for me.
Evander started out being a misunderstood guy that the whole town seemed to love to hate. He's been to prison for a crime he didn't commit and at first, I thought he was very well adjusted with it all. Around the last ten chapters of the novel, he did a 180 on his mood and how he treated Kennedy. He became overbearing and domineering. I also don't understand how "I want babies with you" is the ultimate declaration of love according to the heroine.
The romance started off as a slow burn, which was what kept me interested in the story. Halfway through the book, the relationship was established and then it felt like the author started scrambling for another plotline. The vengeance storyline was resolved way too easily and had no suspense considering these are standalone novels and the book was almost ending.
My Favorite Quotes:
"My level of sarcasm has gotten to the point where even I don't know whether I'm kidding or not."
"Don't break anybody's heart. They only have one. Break bones instead. They have two hundred and six."
"Second best was what I always seemed to be, yet never wanted to experience."
If I had to rank this particular story within this series, it'd probably be in the top 2. This is one of the more intense plotlines to this series. Even though this was a reread I was still on the edge of my seat throughout the book.
I like Cat a little more as this series progresses. I adore how feisty and sarcastic she can be. She also doesn't take anyone's crap, but she does know when to take no for an answer. She understands that she may not win every battle, but she will, eventually, win the war.
Bones almost became an a**hole in this book. I was ready to cut ties if everything proved to be true. I'm glad it didn't (considering that I didn't remember much of what would happen). Though he can be overprotective and domineering, I can understand where he's coming from.
The ending had my heart beating faster than usual and my blood pressure rising. It was a very good conclusion to an amazing story.
The Audio Book:
The narration was great with an exception that shouldn't come as a surprise to you (if you've read my other reviews of this series): Bones' voice. Just because I got used to it doesn't mean I like it.
I think my expectations made me stick my foot in my mouth where this novel is concerned. I was expecting something a little bit darker and life or death driven than what I got. I was on the edge of my seat waiting for something to happen and nothing drastic ever did. Everything fell into place way too perfectly and that didn't make for an out-of-this-world story.
I liked Perrie as a character. She was doing what she had to, to provide and protect her daughter. I can't blame her for the decisions she made. I loved her sassy retorts and how she didn't beat around the bush in conversations.
Adrian was a nice guy overall. He took pity on her when they first met and things seemed to work out too perfectly from there. I would have liked to see something unexpected happen to force the characters to deal with an emotion other than the cliché I-want-you-but-I-can't-have-you bulls*it.
I usually stay away from novels that have kids in them, but I decided, early on, to trudge forward with this one. This wasn't an exception to my so-called "rule". The kids were around 7 or 8 years old and in some conversations seemed much older (because of the vocabulary usage) or much younger.
Overall, this was a nice story but it wasn't incredible. One thing I will mention that started getting to me was all the grammatical errors. I can usually overlook grammar, but I was finding mistakes (miswritten words, sentences missing words to show the action being performed by the character to make everything make sense, etc.) that were pulling me out of the story because I had to stop and think about what was written.
My Favorite Quotes:
"Payback was a b*tch. So was I when I wanted to be."
"Some things n life were meant to be kept close to your chest. My life was an entire deck of cards meant to be played closely to myself."
"Things don't happen just because you want them to."
This book broke me in so many ways. I don't think I could articulate how much I loved and despised this book. This was one of those books where I thought I could see a plot twist coming, but in reality, I was just scratching the surface and what would eventually come to be was much more devious than my imagination could come up with. The author did a fantastic job on this novel (and this series)! Her writing and story building keep getting better with every book.
When I finally thought that Raven had concurred all the evils in her world and could possibly look forward to being happy in Keystone with Christian this book happened. Towards the end, it felt like Raven reverted back to her old self and I'm not sure how I feel about that when she seems as bloodthirsty as ever. When the ultimate plot twist happened (around 4 hours to the end of the audiobook), I was sure things were going to fall apart and I hated every single minute of it.
Christian proved his love so many times in this novel. He was so understanding when things were so bleak. Even though it could have possibly been Raven's decision (the memory plot twist), he was still willing to stay by her side and help her in any way he could. For almost every scene involving Christian after that, I could feel a little piece of my heart breaking off.
The secondary characters in this novel/series felt just as real and developed as the main characters. I would love to have even more of a glimpse into their lives. It looks like Shepard's and Niko's stories are slowly being introduced. I hope Shepard's story gets resolved in the next book so I can at least get some closure.
Though this novel ended with a faint light at the end of the metaphorical tunnel, we were left with too many questions and not enough answers. I'd also like to mention that this novel would have been even better appreciated (detail wise) had I been reading this series back to back. The next novel can't come soon enough!
The Audio Book:
The narrator was great! All the voices were believable. Nicole Poole has a nice range of male and female voices with and without accents.
I've loved the past two books in this series, but this one felt more like a filler than anything else. The story only started to move along and get interesting by the last 5 or so chapters. This novel also ended, once again, in a cliffhanger. I felt cheated, to a degree, because there were only more problems presented for the main characters. When things finally started to maybe get resolved the novel ended.
Raven was the ultimate damsel in distress in this novel in particular. It was illness after bad luck after bad coincidence for her with no end in sight. I understand that she didn't have control of what was happening to her (which is also how this series started in the first place), but it got old very fast.
Rhyland and Kinsley were nice characters. They help Raven when things go wrong (because they always go wrong). They can't reveal any pertinent information because of the curse, which means they get to leave Raven guessing at what happened in the past and how she can right things once again.
Overall, this wasn't the best novel in this series. I would have been happier with this as a novella to move the story from points A to B faster. The characters were mostly in their heads for this entire novel with a tidbit or two of important information thrown in here and there with no explanation. Even after all this, I'm still looking forward to the next novel in this series because it left me with too many questions and no answers.
My Favorite Quotes:
"Darkness lies where most believe there is light."
"Because you need to learn that with everything you see, there is a price [...]."
"Maybe it's time. Time to let go of the past, move on from the distrust, and focus on the future."
* I received a complimentary early copy of this book because I supported it on Kindle Scout.
The writing style did wonders for this novel, but a few things bothered me throughout the story. However, I loved how willing and open the main characters were to getting help for their mental issues and made it a point to actively seek out the help they needed.
Sophie has been through a lot. She's gotten to a point where she has backup plans for her backup plans. She's a recluse who has made it big from posting nail art videos online and well-planned investments. My only problem with her was how her problems seemed to start disappearing a day after she met Cameron. I can only suspend my belief for so long.
Cameron was a gentle giant, but he has a mean side when pushed to the edge. He's been through a lot in his life. I liked how, in a way, Sophie and Cam help "fix" each other throughout the story to a certain degree. What ended up leaving a bad taste in my mouth was the secret Cam kept until a few chapters from the end. It was only "revealed" because of pure happenstance. I understand, that ultimately, it wasn't his fault but he shouldn't have kept everything going while knowing she didn't know the full story. I also didn't understand why he hung around her to the point that he did. What ever happened to him having a job?
I was so engrossed in the story that I didn't see the brother and the BFF plot twist. Though it caught me blindsided, it got resolved way too easily. I'd also like to point out the lack of character development for the secondary characters. It felt like they were there only to further the plot line. It didn't feel like they had any substance to them.
Overall, this was a good story with a few details that rubbed me the wrong way. The main characters were very likable, but everything moved too fast to make it believable. I would have loved to have gotten to know the fire department aspect of the story. It would have made for a great series of spinoffs stories if any of Cam's friends had been presented organically throughout the story.
My Favorite Quotes:
"I'm not remotely athletic. I believe working out is a special kind of torture, and food is meant to be enjoyed."
"Life isn't fair [...]. Sometimes the bad guy wins. Sometimes dark conquers the light. Sometimes we forget to chase after our dreams, and we let the ones we love get away."
"Face your fears. Embrace the pain. Take a chance."
* I received an eARC of this book from NetGalley.
This series has won me over ever since I learned of its existence and actively decided to read it. The first half reads like comic strips. Most hit close to home and become even more entertaining and existential life crisis inducing the more time you take to think about them.
The second half was my favorite because it melds the comics and drawings to a full dissertation/text/story (?). I loved the message the author presented in that part of the book. The internet can be a negative place and that may provoke anxiety when it comes to sharing your passion with complete strangers online. All you can do is take a chance and try to work with it. When things become too much, take a much-needed break and de-stress. Everyone has been through things that they thought they'd never get through, but you're still here so you can also get through this obstacle too.
It looks like I missed a few important events by not finishing 'One Second', but that isn't going to make me go back and try to push through it for the third time. I adored the small tidbits this novella provided in past stories and the beginnings of one or two.
I loved getting insight into Trevor and William. In the series, they were always in the background. This novella was great because it "checked up" on so many people. It wasn't anything set in stone, but it was something I had been waiting for for the past few books and it finally happened.
This novella also got me interested in a possible Lakota spin-off series. He seems sweet and capable. Though I'm not sure I'm a big fan of Melody, considering her brilliant idea of going to look for a cat in a snowstorm close to nightfall.
The one thing I wish I did know the details of was the Ben situation. After what happened in Wheeler's story (Book #5 in this series) I thought that was the last I'd ever see of him. I don't think he deserves a happy ending and I'm not quite sure how to deal with him and the situation.
In conclusion, I liked this not quite "ending" to this series. It was sweet and almost every character seems to have a purpose or a possible story to tell in the future if the author so chooses. This was a great series and I can't wait to continue reading novels by this author!
The Audio Book:
The narration was great! Though the men seemed to have very similar voices but considering they're brothers it's something I expected. I've listened to a few of their individual stories and they do sound similar all around. It just makes it tricky in this novella because, for the most part, there are usually 2 or 3 brothers together at all times in most scenes.
* This review contains a few minor spoilers for this story.
My expectations weren't too high for this novella and that's probably what saved it from ending up a DNF. I liked how the story started out in the first book of this series, but this one was just a rushed and disjointed series of coincidences.
I liked Legend, but I can't overlook the fact that he "found" star by refusing a "trade" which had consequences an ancient vampire, as he calls himself multiple times in this novella, should have seen coming.
Star wasn't around enough for me to get to know her. We're informed, by her, of the trauma she's gone through, how her mother is somewhat at fault for it and her current circumstances. Other than her miraculous survival at the end and her power there isn't much to say about her. She'll probably have a big role in the next few books because of the storyline she's so intricately a part of. I'd like to see more of her.
I don't like that the author relied on sheer luck to pull this story together. There should have been better planned twists and turns to get Legend to that castle. This story feels like a rushed cop-out, but for the purpose of moving the overall storyline along and giving the reader an "origin" story for Star, I can't say I hated it.
My Favorite Quotes:
"The only thing to see in life is darkness and light. Nothing else exists or matters."
"I just wish I were completely free."
This was a surprisingly enjoyable novel. I can't put into words as to why I went into this book apprehensively. I've been in a book slump as of late so due to that circumstance I've been DNFing books left and right. I'm glad this was an exception.
Jules was one of the brighter characters in this novel. He's smart, sweet and caring, but ruthless when push comes to shove. He was one of the more sane character's and I appreciated his presence overall.
I guessed/saw most of the "twists" coming from miles away, which was disappointing when I was finally proved right. I like stories that keep me guessing and unfortunately, this was not one of those stories. I liked it nonetheless, but I wasn't blown away by it. The next novel (based on the last few pages of this one) seems to be Legends story and I can't help but be excited about it.
My Favorite Quotes:
"Emotional scars, they take time [to heal]. Sometimes more than physical wounds."
"(...) cruelty exists everywhere."
"[We're] running from the past and chasing a future I hope we can find."
I adore this series and I'm so glad it's still living up to my expectations from the first time I read it. This time around the secondary characters left a big impression on me. I especially liked Vlad in this book (too bad his series made me despise him).
I love Cat. She's stubborn, protective of what's hers and a kick*ss fighter. Her relationship with Bones' can get rocky at times, but she doesn't back down easily or martyr herself. I like how she's grown and evolved from the first book when she used to go to a bar to seduce and stake a vampire a night.
I like Bones overall, but he can come off as too overprotective in quite a few situations. That's not what I would consider a quality and it sometimes annoys me to no end. Other than that, I like how he's brutally honest especially when it comes to making difficult decisions.
I consider this series to be a classic in the vampire genre. If you like vampires (that don't shine) with a dash of romance and gore, I recommend this series to the ends of the earth and back.
The Audio Book:
I liked everything about this book except Bones' voice. It's not at all what I first imagined when I first read these books (before the audio books released). My gripe with his voice is the overall pitch. I've never met a guy that spoke in that high of a pitch. Other than that, the narration was awesome.
Now that I've had a few months to forget my dislike of certain aspects of this series I can say that I enjoyed this novella very much. My dislike was mostly directed towards Logan and Silver and the situations they'd get themselves in. All the other characters were very likable and entertaining.
I like how this novella was set up to give a glimpse into the lives of so many of the characters. This story has me invested in a happy ending for Logan's brothers and Finn. If only writing books was a fast, painless and easy process.
Silver and Logan's happily ever after was cute and that's coming from someone that doesn't necessarily like kids in the books she reads. There are exceptions to every rule and this novella turned out to be one of them. Though I wish I had read this authors books in the order that makes little tidbits in the story more visible to me because, if I'm going off of what happened in the end of this novella, I missed a lot.
In conclusion, the family dynamic in this series is amazing. I love how this story and its characters are accepting of others that aren't like them. Their group accepts that love is love, regardless of species, gender, and ethnicity. No one should be ostracized for showing their true selves and being outside of what everyone considers the "norm". It's a beautiful message that deserves recognition!
The Audio Book:
This narrator's voice has grown on me over the course of this series and a few other books. I love her range in accents and believable male and female voices. She's made me look forward to many other audio books when I see her name mentioned as the narrator. Her narration was awesome in this novella!