Book Boxes, Products I love!!

Unboxing & Review: Illumicrate Glamour and Gold Special Edition

Unboxing & Review: Illumicrate Glamour and Gold Special Edition

Illumicrate Glamour and Gold Special Edition

  • Theme: Special edition for the release of Chain of Gold by Cassandra Clare
  • Overall: ****
  • Cost: $ USD including shipping
  • Quality of Items: ****
  • Value for the Money:****
  • Shipping: *** This box was expected to ship in March around the release of the book was late due to COVID-19 which I dont hold against the company and they communicated well about. One of the items will need to be reprinted and sent out. Due to factory closures there is no estimated time for that replacement. Because they are based out of the UK the cost of shipping to the US

Whats in the box:

  1. Cortana Inspired Letter Opener by @fableandblack
  2. Infernal Devices triglyph with art by @rosiethorns88
  3. Tea for One set with art by @chattynora
  4. Shadowhunter Playing cards designed by @merwildandco (these are actually having to be reprinted due to a misrepresentation of a few characters)
  5. Mortal Instruments Blanket by @yoshitani
  6. Black and white art prints by @arz28
  7. Exclusive Edition of Chain of Gold with Cassandra Clare stamped signature. I didn’t realize this was only going to be stamped and not signed until I received it so was pretty bummed there, but the book is gorgeous and the sprayed edges are done perfectly.

Illumicrate Glamour and Gold Special Edition

Overall I was not super satisfied with this box and the only thing I plan on keeping is the Cortana letter opener. Time after time i am finding myself dissatisfied with llumicrate and their customer service and shipping experience, but FOMO of their special edition books has me hanging on. The only thing that is a saving grace is their items usually resell for enough to recover the money I feel I wasted.

Illumicrate Glamour and Gold Special Edition

Illumicrate Glamour and Gold Special Edition

Book Reviews, Products I love!!

COVER REVEAL: The Green Door by Heather Kindt

From award-winning author, Heather Kindt, author of The Weaver Trilogy, comes the first book in the Eternal Artifacts series, THE GREEN DOOR, a YA fantasy with the game-like excitement of The Hunger Games and the adventure of the Chronicles of Narnia.
COVER REVEAL: The Green Door by Heather Kindt
 
Blurb:
 
The game was supposed to be easy… enter the door, find the object, collect the prize money.

But nothing is ever that easy for Meg Covington. Her dad keeps a roof over her head, but college is out of the question. Her best friend, Brek, will leave for school, and she’ll be trapped in her hometown—that is until Meg discovers the flyer for Rosenbaum’s game hanging in the entryway of the record store.

Within the basement of the mansion lies the white passage, a hallway lined with colorful doors. When each door turns out to be a portal to another world, things get complicated quickly. If they find the object within the world, Meg will take her first step towards freedom. But is it really just a game, or a one-way ticket to something much more dangerous?

The Green Door is the first book in Heather Kindt’s young adult fantasy series. If you like strong female leads, adventure, snarky attitudes, and sexy sirens, then you’ll love the first installment in the Eternal Artifacts series.

The Green Door Releases on June 11th but is available for preorder  on Amazon now and don’t forget to add to your Goodreads TBR!

 
Book Reviews, Products I love!!

Book Review: Crave by Tracy Wolff

Crave (Crave #1) by Tracy Wolff

  • Overall rating : ****
  • Reading rate: *****
  • Romance:*****
  • Pages: 592
  • Release date: April 7, 2020
  • Publisher: Entangled: Teen
  • Recommended if you liked: Jennifer L. Armentrout works, Vampire Academy
  • Purchase on Amazon here

This book was all over Instagram and I kept hearing great things so I had to hop on board. This book has been blurbed as a comparable to Twilight and while the cover does very closely resemble the series I didn’t find a lot of similarities outside of a few specific references.

What I liked:

  • INTALOVE!! Total sucker for it and there was some definite steam…. Jaxon (swoon)
  • Fun and fast paced, I don’t think there was a lull in action the whole book.
  • Left with a smidgen of a cliffhanger but not so much I was dying to know what happens next… I will 1005 be grabbing the next book to find out though.
  • I often struggle with a lack of information on a world, but the book is written so you are finding things out as the MC does so everything still made sense and flowed well…. I cant wait to learn more in future installments.
  • I also loved the bit of extra content after the end from Jaxon’s perspective.

What I struggled with:

  • A bit predicable
  • Dated writing, really targeted references and writing style for the current teen crowd. Made me feel too old to be reading the novel and I think will put off a lot of non YA aged YA fans

Overall it is not a work of literary art or anything of that caliber but if you are looking for a fun and fast paced Paranormal Romance read i highly recommend! The title and cover for book #2 Crush have already been released and I will 100% be reading as soon as it is released.

Synopsis:

My whole world changed when I stepped inside the academy. Nothing is right about this place or the other students in it. Here I am, a mere mortal among gods…or monsters. I still can’t decide which of these warring factions I belong to, if I belong at all. I only know the one thing that unites them is their hatred of me.

Then there’s Jaxon Vega. A vampire with deadly secrets who hasn’t felt anything for a hundred years. But there’s something about him that calls to me, something broken in him that somehow fits with what’s broken in me.

Which could spell death for us all.

Because Jaxon walled himself off for a reason. And now someone wants to wake a sleeping monster, and I’m wondering if I was brought here intentionally—as the bait. 

 

Book Boxes, Products I love!!

Unboxing & Review: March Illumicrate

  • Theme: Worlds Collide
  • Overall: **
  • Cost: $52.68 USD including shipping
  • Quality of Items: *** I really felt like some of the items this month were rather cheap and not well done. For example the printing on the mug made the art difficult to make out. The necklace and keychain were also very low quality items.
  • Value for the Money:**
  • Shipping: *** This months box was late due to COVID-19 and while I don’t hold that against the company the box was also not well packed. Items were unwrapped and rolling loosely around the box and my mug was broken.
    • Ilumicrate did respond quickly to the request for a replacement but it will be several weeks before it arrives. Illumicrate Worlds Collide Unboxing & Review

I have yet to be impressed with the box items for Illumicrate but I buy for the special edition books. With UK shipping and conversion it is only a few dollars more to get the whole box and hopefully can sell a few items to even out a bit.

Whats in the box:

Illumicrate Worlds Collide Unboxing & ReviewIMG_0795IMG_0796

 

If you are in the UK this box is probably the way to go, but for us US peeps Owlcrate and Fairyloot have way more bang for your buck.

Do you even purchase book boxes? Which one do you feel is the best value?

Book Reviews, Products I love!!

COVER REVEAL: The Curse of the King, by Winnie Lyon

***COVER REVEAL*** for THE CURSE OF THE KING, by Winnie Lyon! The Curse of the King is set to release September 1st, 2020 by The Parliament House Press.

Don’t forget to add to your GoodReads TBR!
COVER REVEAL: The Curse of the King, by Winnie Lyon
Synopsis:
“Laura Wilson is the heir to an ancient curse.

As a young witch descending from the very powerful trio of witches that had cursed Macbeth, the pressure she faces daily is non-stop. When Laura is forced to participate in her school’s rendition of the classic play, she gives herself a single task: breaking the curse once and for all.

This task proves itself to be more difficult than she ever could have imagined when a miscast spell leads to the summoning of her dead ancestor, Cecily Wilson, one of the very witches that cursed Macbeth.

As Laura attempts to send her resurrected relative back beyond the veil, she is faced with one of the harsh realities of high school—having a crush on her best friend, Holly. However, things only get more complicated as Holly pines after Peter, a lonely, quick-witted vampire.

While she grows closer to Cecily, Laura sees first-hand the true horrors of being a witch in Elizabethan England as demonic forces arise in her little town of Shipley Hollow.

Can Laura break the curse and save her family name before the curtains rise on opening night?

Brought to you by Winnie Lyon, The Curse of the King is an action-packed novel with mysterious and magical twists at every turn.”
Parliament Press:
Instagram: @theparliamentpress
Twitter: @parliamentbooks
Facebook: @theparliamenthouse
Winnie Lyon:
Instagram: @winnieclyon
Twitter: winnieclyon
Facebook: Winnie Lyon
Book Reviews, Products I love!!

April Wrap Up & May TBR

April Wrap- Up

So this month was another great reading month for me with 10 books finished.  I also made some serious headway on series I have been meaning to read for a while, and they were all really great reads!!!! Most of these books had just minor flaws that kept them from being 5 star reads!THe Dark Tide by Alicia Jasinksa

ARCs Read:

 

  • The Dark Tide by Alicia Jasinska *** This was a unique take on a dark Beauty and the Beast retelling
  • Storybound by Emily McKay **** One of the cutest books I have read in a long time. Who doesn’t wish they could meet their book boyfriend?

New Releases:

  • Crave by Tracy Wolff **** Guys I devoured this book in less than 2 days! Full review Crave (Crave Series Book 1) by [Tracy Wolff]coming at you in a few days.

Also made some headway on series I have been dying to get to:

  • Obsidian: Lux #1 by Jennifer L. Armentrout ****
  • Onyx: Lux #2 by Jennifer L. Armentrout  **** I purchased a collectors edition of the first two books in one for a couple of bucks in a Book Outlet sale more than a year ago now and finally got around to reading…. I finished the first two books in a single day!!!
  • The Black Witch: Black Witch Chronicles #1 by Laurie Forest  **** I started this book for a readalong and am so so glad that I did. It does Ignite Me (Shatter Me Book 3)kick off a little slow but I highly recommend hanging in there.
    • Check out my full review here
  • The Iron Flower: Black Witch Chronicles #2  by Laurie Forest **** Just WOW, I read this entire book in a single day!!! Full review coming soon
  • Unravel Me: Shatter Me #2 by
    Tahereh Mafi ****

    • Check out my review of Shatter Me book #1 here
  • Ignite Me: Shatter Me #3 by Tahereh Mafi ****
  • The Iron King: Iron Fay #1 by Julie Kagawa ***

I included links above to full reviews for posted books. I have quite a few more full reviews coming your way in the coming weeks so be on the look out!

How was your April for reading? Reading anything great this month?

May TBR

I am largely a mood reader so my TBR is a bit informal, really what I would like to get read but completely subject to change.

Currently reading:

Where Dreams Descend: A Novel (Kingdom of Cards Book 1)

  • Iron Daughter: The Iron Fey #2 by Julie Kagawa – While I was not thrilled with the first installment the ending left me curious to see what happens next and this series has so many rave reviews! Plus I already own them all so better not to go to waste 🙂
  • Where Dreams Descend:Kingdom of Cards #1 (ARC Review) by Janella Angeles- I am just diving into this one, and its a little confusing right out of the gate but I will reserve final judgement until I have finished.
  • Restore Me: Shatter Me #4 by Tahereh Mafi- I am listening to this on audio book and so far not liking it as much as the original trilogy, but I will push through to end and decide if I finish out the series.

I also hope to read: 

  • The Chosen Ones by Veronica Roth– I ordered a Goldsboro signed edition and its just taken a little extra time to arrive with the state of the world.
  • I would love to finish the Lux series but I am making myself wait to get a few other “need to reads” out of the way because once I start I know I will not be able to stop.
  • The Crow Rider: Storm Crow Book #2 by Kalyn Josephson- I read book 1 last year and was not super impressed but being a debut novel authors often get better as they go so wanted to give the the author a second chance.
    • Check out my review for The Storm Crow book #1 here
  • Rebel Mages by Laurie Forest: This is a compilation of Novellas that accompany The Black Witch Chronicles. This is the next book in my The Black Witch Chronicles read along as we prepare for the release of The Shadow Wand in June.

What is on your TBR for May?

Book Reviews, Products I love!!

Book Review: The Black Witch by Laurie Forest

The Black Witch (Book #1 The Black Witch Chronicles) by Laurie Forest Book Review

  • Overall rating : ****
  • Reading rate: ***
  • Romance: ***
  • Pages: 601
  • Release date: May 2, 2017
  • Publisher: Harlequin Teen
  • Recommended if you liked: Serpent & Dove, Shadow & Bone
  • Purchase on Amazon here

I have had The Black Witch on my TBR for a VERY long time, so when some fellow Bookstgrammers put together a read along I jumped on the chance.

I actually went back and forth between audio and physical book for this read and I think starting with audio really helped with some of the heavy world building in the begging. Once things started to take off later in the book I picked up the physical book to finish off because I wanted to absorb all of the details.

What I liked: This books has all the feels

  • A great mix of politics, people and magic system.
  • Lots of great characters, I found myself caring for (and hating) so many people in just the first book.
  • I 100% know I am in for a serious heartbreak at some point, there are LOTS of great love lines going on in this series. While there are love interests in this book there are no explicit scenes so keeps it YA.

What I struggled with:

  • There is a lot of prejudice and bullying in this book, some of it was a bit hard to get through but it essential to the story and things pick up as it goes
  • There were quite a few scenes that felt a little repetitive and the story could have been a bit shorter and been just as good if not better for me

Overall I HIGHLY recommend this book… and no spoilers but I finished the sequel in a single day and it gets even better!!

Synopsis:

A new Black Witch will rise…her powers vast beyond imagining.

Elloren Gardner is the granddaughter of the last prophesied Black Witch, Carnissa Gardner, who drove back the enemy forces and saved the Gardnerian people during the Realm War. But while she is the absolute spitting image of her famous grandmother, Elloren is utterly devoid of power in a society that prizes magical ability above all else.

When she is granted the opportunity to pursue her lifelong dream of becoming an apothecary, Elloren joins her brothers at the prestigious Verpax University to embrace a destiny of her own, free from the shadow of her grandmother’s legacy. But she soon realizes that the university, which admits all manner of people—including the fire-wielding, winged Icarals, the sworn enemies of all Gardnerians—is a treacherous place for the granddaughter of the Black Witch.

As evil looms on the horizon and the pressure to live up to her heritage builds, everything Elloren thought she knew will be challenged and torn away. Her best hope of survival may be among the most unlikely band of rebels…if only she can find the courage to trust those she’s been taught to fear.

Have you read The Black Witch? If so, what did you think of it? Any similar recommendations?

Book Reviews, Products I love!!

Book Review: The Dark Tide by Alicia Jasinska

The Dark Tide (The Dark Tide #1) by Alicia Jasinska Review

THe Dark Tide by Alicia Jasinksa

  • Overall rating : ***
  • Reading rate: ****
  • Romance: **** Lots of love, but nothing steamy
  • Pages: 336
  • Release date: June 2, 2020
  • Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
  • Recommended if you liked: The Wicked Deep
  • Purchase on Amazon here

As soon as I saw this cover I knew I had to request! Gorgeous right!!! Between that and the description I could not wait to get my hands on this book.

What I liked:

  • This was a fast-paced dark fantasy read with Beauty and the Beast vibes…. well, with a gorgeous Witch Queen as the “beast”.
  • The story dives right into the action and does not let up until the very end.
  • I enjoyed the concept of the world Jasinska set up, the way magic works and the idea of the island being a sanctuary where witches and humans escaped persecution from the mainlanders.

What I struggled with:

  • The book fell a little short for me due the lack of broader world building and predictability. I felt like I came into an already rolling story line and while some background was filled in as we went, I was still left with a lot of questions.
  • The way the story was set up also allowed you to predict characters actions and the overall outcome of the story but was still overall a good read.

The book is listed as being a series but I felt it worked well as a standalone and was not set up to have an immediate next issue to resolve.

Synopsis:

Every year on St. Walpurga’s Eve, Caldella’s Witch Queen lures a boy back to her palace. An innocent life to be sacrificed on the full moon to keep the island city from sinking.

Lina Kirk is convinced her brother is going to be taken this year. To save him, she enlists the help of Thomas Lin, the boy she secretly loves, and the only person to ever escape from the palace. But they draw the queen’s attention, and Thomas is chosen as the sacrifice.

Queen Eva watched her sister die to save the boy she loved. Now as queen, she won’t make the same mistake. She’s willing to sacrifice anyone if it means saving herself and her city.

When Lina offers herself to the queen in exchange for Thomas’s freedom, the two girls await the full moon together. But Lina is not at all what Eva expected, and the queen is nothing like Lina envisioned. Against their will, they find themselves falling for each other. As water floods Caldella’s streets and the dark tide demands its sacrifice, they must choose who to save: themselves, each other, or the island city relying on them both.

Thank you to Sourcebooks Fire and NetGalley for a copy of The Dark Tide in exchange for honest opinion.

Book Reviews, Products I love!!

COVER REVEAL: Shades of the City, by Danielle K. Roux

**🖤Cover Reveal🖤**

I am so excited to be a part of the reveal of this amazing cover for SHADES OF THE CITY (This Will Kill That #2), by Danielle K. Roux!!

Shades of the City is set to release December 1st, 2020 by The Parliament House Press. Don’t forget to add to your Good Reads TBR. 

SOTC

Synopsis:

“Welcome back to District City, a place haunted by a tragic past, ravaged by monsters,
and divided into rival factions by mysterious aura Colors.In the aftermath of the events at the Blue Embassy, murderous Calen plots revenge and uses his dark power to further his influence. New trials bring Alan and Kazuki closer together as they continue their quest to unlock the secrets of the city. Mysterious newcomer, Tanith might have all the answers, if they can figure out how to get rid of the voices in their head. As relationships are torn apart, sacrifices must be made to gain power over others to survive. In this city, the dead don’t stay dead, and dreams reveal fragments of truth. The world may have ended once, but that doesn’t mean it can’t happen again..”

Parliament Press:

Instagram: @theparliamentpress

Twitter: @parliamentbooks

Facebook: @theparliamenthouse

Danielle K. Roux:

Instagram: @daniellekroux

Facebook: DanielleKRoux

Twitter: DKRoux

Book Reviews, Products I love!!

Book Review: Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

Shatter Me (Shatter Me #1) by Tahereh Mafi Book Review

  • Overall: ****
  • Romance: ****
  • Reading Rate: *****
  • Pages: 338
  • Publication Date: November 15, 2011
  • Publisher: Harper Voyager 
  • Recommend if you like: Divergent, The Remnant Chronicles
  • Purchase on Amazon here

Shatter Me is one of those series I keep hearing about over and over and with the final book in the series releasing this month I decided I needed to finally dive in…. and of course to try and avoid some spoilers if possible.

For the record I LOVE Dystopian worlds in print and in movies…though this genre may not be your cup of tea I think there is enough of a romance element that it could still draw in some readers who normally would not take the plunge.

What I liked:

  • Really great mix of dystopian and YA romance. Adam and Juliette give me Tris and Four vibes from Divergent but with a little more steam.
  • I really liked the overall concept of the book. I normally don’t do well not having a lot of information but the book is set up to keep you guessing on whats real and who you can trust and I just ate it up. I feel like it was a great set up for a series with endless possibilities.
  • Fast paced. I listened to the audio book  through Scribd and blew through it I 2 days (admittedly during “social distancing”).

What I struggled with:

  • The writing style and the repeating of words a lot was a bit challenging to listen to so I imagine would have been much harder to read. The way things were written do give you good insight into Juliette’s mental state which overall was valuable to the story.

Overall I really enjoyed the story and dove right into listening to the sequel to find out what happens next… and if my ship can sail!

Synopsis:

I have a curse
I have a gift

I am a monster
I’m more than human

My touch is lethal
My touch is power

I am their weapon
I will fight back

Juliette hasn’t touched anyone in exactly 264 days.
The last time she did, it was an accident, but The Reestablishment locked her up for murder. No one knows why Juliette’s touch is fatal. As long as she doesn’t hurt anyone else, no one really cares. The world is too busy crumbling to pieces to pay attention to a 17-year-old girl. Diseases are destroying the population, food is hard to find, birds don’t fly anymore, and the clouds are the wrong color.
The Reestablishment said their way was the only way to fix things, so they threw Juliette in a cell. Now so many people are dead that the survivors are whispering war – and The Reestablishment has changed its mind. Maybe Juliette is more than a tortured soul stuffed into a poisonous body. Maybe she’s exactly what they need right now.

Juliette has to make a choice: Be a weapon. Or be a warrior.