Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Avenged by Amy Tintera (Ruined Series - Bk 2)

By Amy Tintera
416 Pages
Publisher: Harper Teen

Plot: Emelina Flores has come home to Ruina. After rescuing her sister, Olivia, from imprisonment in rival kingdom Lera, Em and Olivia together vow to rebuild Ruina to its former glory. But their fight has only begun. Olivia is determined to destroy everyone who acts against Ruina. Em isn’t as sure. Ever since Em posed as Prince Casimir’s betrothed in Lera, she’s started to see another side to this war. And now that Cas has taken the throne, Em believes a truce is within reach. But Olivia suspects that Em’s romantic feelings for Cas are just coloring her judgement.

Em is determined to bring peace to her home. But when winning the war could mean betraying her family, Em faces an impossible choice between loyalty and love. Em must stay one step ahead of her enemies—and her blood—before she’s the next victim in this battle for sovereignty. (2017, Amazon.com)

Review: Avenged continues right where book 1 left off and is full of action, drama, and romance! Em has her sister Olivia back, but she is full of rage and revenge. She is consumed by it and it makes it even harder for Em and Cas to even talk to each other.   And even though Cas has promised not to hunt her people, there are other enemies that threaten Em and Ruina's future. Book 2 has more romance between Em and Cas now that there are no more secrets between them.  But, even so they know they can't be together because their people still hate each other.  As Olivia's resolve for revenge becomes more intense, Em is caught between her people and the man she can't stop loving.  Can't wait for book 3!  Recommend for ages 15 and up!

*A DRC was given for an honest review.

            4 Hearts!

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Bound To You By Alyssa Brandon

Bound To You
by Alyssa Brandon
288 Pages
Publisher: Swoon Reads

Plot: She's met her mate . . . and he's met his match.
Megan Ross has been waiting her whole life for her mate to come and sweep her off her feet. But the wolf she meets on the beach is NOT the sweet gentle boy she's been dreaming of. Instead, he's a warrior, one whose suffering has led him to lock his heart away in a prison as cold and hard as a diamond, who fights to resist the bond and their deep sexual attraction.
Far from home, with a soulmate who is still a stranger, Megan learns that the path to true love isn't quite as straight and easy as she thought . . . (2017, Amazon.com)

Review:  It's been a long time since I've read a werewolf romance book, but this caught my attention because it didn't seem like the ones I've read in the past.  Which is good - I wanted something different.  Being the daughter of an Alpha pack leader, Megan is given a party in hopes that she will find her "mate."  But, this werewolf story is not the happily ever after Megan was hoping for when she finds her mate in a Warrior Alpha named James.  When James realizes he and Megan are "True Mates," he practically wants to run away.  He loathes the idea of not being in control of his emotions (and life), and having Megan follow him around like a lost were-pup (so to speak), makes it even worse.  Megan doesn't understand why James is so distant, but she is determined to give their relationship a chance - even if James doesn't want to. 

The story is mainly centered on the relationship dynamics between Megan and James, which is fine if you purely want a romance story.  However, there is a part of the story line that was a bit confusing to me.  The enemy of the werewolves are these creepy creatures called Wraiths.  They apparently feed on people and werewolves, but only come out in the city and at night.  This is fine, but there was no background or solutions of any kind at the end regarding this threat.  They fought them and that was it.  There was no plot regarding these beings.  So, recommended if you like a werewolf romance that is not an obsessive love story, but an actual growth towards developing feelings.  So, more authentic then your average romance in this genre. 

*Received a DRC for an honest review.

Rating: 💖💖💖
            3 Hearts!

The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi

The Star-Touched Queen
by Roshani Chokshi
368 Pages
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin

Plot: Maya is cursed. With a horoscope that promises a marriage of Death and Destruction, she has earned only the scorn and fear of her father's kingdom. Content to follow more scholarly pursuits, her whole world is torn apart when her father, the Raja, arranges a wedding of political convenience to quell outside rebellions. Soon Maya becomes the queen of Akaran and wife of Amar. Neither roles are what she expected: As Akaran's queen, she finds her voice and power. As Amar's wife, she finds something else entirely: Compassion. Protection. Desire...

But Akaran has its own secrets -- thousands of locked doors, gardens of glass, and a tree that bears memories instead of fruit. Soon, Maya suspects her life is in danger. Yet who, besides her husband, can she trust? With the fate of the human and Otherworldly realms hanging in the balance, Maya must unravel an ancient mystery that spans reincarnated lives to save those she loves the most. . .including herself. (2017, Amazon.com)

Review:  I actually read A Crown of Wishes several months ago, which is the sequel to this series, and was just awed at such great storytelling. (See archives for review).  You don't have to read the books in order; however, I would recommend it since the main characters who appear in the second book are from the first.  Needless to say, I couldn't wait to read The Star-Touched Queen!  Ms. Chokshi does not disappoint in this book either.   Her writing is so poetic and the story so beautifully written you really can't put it down. 

Indian mythology is central to the characters and world building, which makes it a very interesting read!  In the beginning you don't know anything about Maya other than she is disliked very much because of her horoscope.  As rebellion threatens her father's kingdom, she ends up marrying Amar, who is the Raja of a kingdom she has never heard of.  But, the more she learns about Amar and her new home, the more she questions everything about herself and her past.  Chokshi does an excellent job with the delicate romance between Maya and Amar, and the complexity of their unique world.  Perfect for fans of An Ember in the Ashes and The Wrath and the Dawn.  Recommended for ages 16 and up!  

Rating:  💖💖💖💖💖
               5 Hearts!

Saturday, November 4, 2017

Start Your Own Etsy Business by Entrepreneur Media

Start Your Own Etsy Business:
Handmade Goods, Crafts, Jewelry, and More
by The Staff of Entrepreneur Media, Inc. 
& Jason R. Rich
180 Pages
Published by Entrepreneur Press

Review: Sold how-to book if you want to start your own Etsy online shop!  Great resource if you make your own items and crafts and want to find an online platform besides Ebay or Amazon to sell them.  Lots of info and tips from set-up to marketing.  This book even talks about business plans, branding, Tax ID's, price points, your target audience and much, much, more!  If you are serious about starting your own Etsy shop, or maybe you started one but need some help, then this is a must have guide for you!  I definitely recommend this book in print.

*A DRC was given for an honest review.

Rating: 💖💖💖💖

Non-Fiction Review: I Should Be Writing by Mur Lafferty

I Should Be Writing: A Writer's Workshop
by Mur Lafferty
160 Pages
Publisher: Rock Point

Review:  I think the best thing about Lafferty's book is that it has all the advice you need in one place.  You probably heard some or maybe even all the advice in this book at some point in your life, but Lafferty has a way of delivering it that really hits home and make you stop and think.  I especially like the chapter where she talks about writers who want to write but just feel like they don't have the time.  As an aspiring writer myself, I found this chapter especially sobering because I make this excuse all the time.  She points out that if you have time to text, watch TV, play games on your phone, etc...you have time to write.  Lafferty also goes beyond motivation to talk about characters, plot, setting,  how to edit, and different publishing methods.  Filled with tons of motivation and practical advice about getting started as a writer or pushing through to the finish line, you will not be disappointed!

*A DRC was given for an honest review.  

Rating: 💖💖💖💖