Book Reviews, Products I love!!

The Unspoken Name by A.K. Larkwood Book Review

The Unspoken Name (The Serpent Gates #1) by A.K. Larkwood

  • Overall: *****
  • Romance:***
  • Reading Rate: ****
  • Pages: 464
  • Release Date: February 11, 2020
  • Publisher: Tor Books
  • Recommend if you liked: An Ember in the Ashes, Nevernight
  • Purchase on Amazon here

GUYS! This book was so so good, I have not had a 5-star book in a very long time. I requested this book from NetGalley based on the synopsis but had not heard any hype about it at all. At first I was totally intimidated by the large character list and pronunciation guide in the front of the book, but a few minutes later I was totally sucked in. Don’t let it intimidate you, its not that complicated and you don’t need to know it all at once. I do wish there was character art available so I could put some of the visions of the characters description in my head since they are all different human like creatures.

The main POV is Csorwe but you on occasion pop into the perspective of other character. Normally I find this distracting in a book but it is very well done, and really felt it added to the overall world and story build.

What I liked:

  • The world is just amazing! It’s almost a mix of fantasy and sci-fi, historical and future. Its not based in earth or with humans so the sky is really the limit with what the author can continue to do.
  • There was so much action packed in this one book! I felt like I read three books or 1000 pages and it was less than 500… I even checked several times!
  • Tons of great snarky humor! While the book deals with a lot of serious topics there always seems to be a funny side to things that keeps it from being a saddening.
  • I also loved that the book left open lines for future books without leaving me with a cliffhanger. I was super satisfied at the end and looking forward to more in the future.

What I struggled with:

  • I really can’t say that I “struggled” but if I could add one more thing to the book it would be for a little more romance/steam. I don’t think the book was lacking at all for not having it, just something that is a personal preference.

Even without steam I would not consider a YA book and put it more on the NA side, there is still a good bit of adult content and death (I have seen it listed as YA or Adult on different sites).

Synopsis:

What if you knew how and when you will die?

Csorwe does — she will climb the mountain, enter the Shrine of the Unspoken, and gain the most honored title: sacrifice.

But on the day of her foretold death, a powerful mage offers her a new fate. Leave with him, and live. Turn away from her destiny and her god to become a thief, a spy, an assassin—the wizard’s loyal sword. Topple an empire, and help him reclaim his seat of power.

But Csorwe will soon learn – gods remember, and if you live long enough, all debts come due.

Thank you to NetGalley and Tor Books for a copy of The Unspoken Name in exchange for my honest opinion.

Have you read The Unspoken Name? Did you love it as much as I did?

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Ruthless Gods Book Review

Ruthless Gods Emily DuncanRuthless Gods by Emily Duncan, Book 2 of the Something Dark and Holy trilogy

Overall: ****

Romance: ***

Reading Rate: ***

Release Date: April 7, 2020

Pages: 432

Publisher: Wednesday Books

Purchase on Amazon here

I recommend if you liked: The Bear and the Nightingale, Shadow & Bone Trilogy, Throne of Glass

*Spoilers for Wicked Saints- click here to check out my spoiler free review of book 1.

This book hurt so good! As soon as I put down Wicked Saints I needed the sequel right away…. And now I need the final book soooo bad!!! Ruthless Gods picks up shortly after Wicked Saints left off with the Nadya dealing with the silence of her Gods, Malachiasz missing after his betrayal, and Serefin trying to deal with his new status as king as well as being God touched.  If you enjoyed Wicked Saints you will love this journey as our main characters and also some new faces try to fix the cracks they made in the world… but will their quest to right their wrongs for each of their countries right the wrongs, or break the world entirely.

In the beginning this book was little more difficult to get through and did a lot more world building and filling in some of the knowledge gaps on the gods from books 1. I honestly feel I need to read the book again to really get everything, and I certainly will when the physical copies release! Several times a character’s section had me saying what on earth was happening and rereading entries several times. But all of that building (and Malachaisz/Nadya teasers) was well worth it in the last quarter of the book, and OMG what and ending and set up for what is sure to be an AMAZING final installment. Duncan did such a great job of stringing me along needing answers and holding out hope for my favorite characters redemption, I love it when an author keeps me guessing! I have no idea how I am going to handle to wait for  book 3 to find out how everything ends!

While book one seemed heavily inspired by the Grishaverse the author really changed things up and left that path for book 2. It almost had Bear and the Nightingale vibes with the mythology and creatures added in.

I am usually great at predicting how books are going to flow and Duncan steps up to say challenge accepted. I may get part of the idea but then she jumps right on over it an rips my heart out… and I love it so much!

Synopsis:

Nadya doesn’t trust her magic anymore. Serefin is fighting off a voice in his head that doesn’t belong to him. Malachiasz is at war with who–and what–he’s become.

As their group is continually torn apart, the girl, the prince, and the monster find their fates irrevocably intertwined. They’re pieces on a board, being orchestrated by someone…or something. The voices that Serefin hears in the darkness, the ones that Nadya believes are her gods, the ones that Malachiasz is desperate to meet—those voices want a stake in the world, and they refuse to stay quiet any longer.

In her dramatic follow-up to Wicked Saints, the first book in her Something Dark and Holy trilogy, Emily A. Duncan paints a Gothic, icy world where shadows whisper, and no one is who they seem, with a shocking ending that will leave you breathless.

 

Thank you to NetGalley and Wednesday Books for a copy of Ruthless Gods in exchange for my honest opinion.

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The Shrike & The Shadows Sneak Peak

What’s up, Witches! In honor of Mabon and the first official day of Autumn we are celebrating with a Sneak Peak at the new dark Hansel and Gretel Retelling by A.M. Wright and Chantal Gadoury!

The Shrike and the Shadows

The Shrike & The Shadows is the first book in The Witches of Krume series and is being released in March 2020 by The Parliament House Press. I am so excited to read this book, it has all those creepy fall vibes I have been hunting for!

Click the here for exclusive access to read the first chapter of the book!

Synopsis:

Men have gone missing before.

The village of Krume is plagued by a haunted wood and a hungry witch. It’s been that way for as long as Hans and Greta can remember, though they have never seen the witch themselves; no one has. 

When men start to disappear once again in the cover of night – their bloody hearts turning up on doorsteps – the village falls into frenzied madness.

Hans and Greta, two outcast orphans, find themselves facing accusations of witchcraft and are met with an ultimatum: burn at the stake, or leave the village forever. 

With nowhere else to go, they abandon their only home. 

As they venture into the strange forest, their path is fraught with horrific creatures, wild and vivid hallucinations, and a mysterious man tied to the witch’s past.

The Shrike is watching, just beyond the deep darkness of the woods. 

Don’t forget to add to your Goodreads TBR 📚

 

 

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Stalking Jack the Ripper Book Review

Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco – Book 1 of the Stalking Jack the Ripper Series

Overall: ***

Romance: **

Reading Rate: ***

Publisher: Jimmy Patterson 

Pages: 352

Purchase on Amazon here

These series has such an intense following, it always makes me nervous to dive in due to the hype. With the final book in the series releasing in September I wanted to get started reading. We are introduced to Audrey Rose as she assists her Uncle with an autopsy. This book is historically based so not only does Audrey Rose struggle to put together the mystery of Jack the Ripper but she also has to fight s society that does not support women’s activities outside of the home. The dynamic between Audrey Rose and Thomas is very Sherlock Holmes and makes for a fun cute read. It did take me a little bit to get into the book due to the world building at the beginning but it picked up as the story went.  

The story wrapped up nicely so I am in not rush to finished the rest of the series but I will continue it eventually. 

What I struggled with:

  • The historical element and Audrey’s limitations as a woman were hard for me to get past.
  • There was a lot of setup at the beginning of the story so it took me a little while to get into the book
  • I was able to predict a lot of the story line, although I admit there were still a few surprises left.

Synopsis:

Seventeen-year-old Audrey Rose Wadsworth was born a lord’s daughter, with a life of wealth and privilege stretched out before her. But between the social teas and silk dress fittings, she leads a forbidden secret life.

Against her stern father’s wishes and society’s expectations, Audrey often slips away to her uncle’s laboratory to study the gruesome practice of forensic medicine. When her work on a string of savagely killed corpses drags Audrey into the investigation of a serial murderer, her search for answers brings her close to her own sheltered world.

The story’s shocking twists and turns, augmented with real, sinister period photos, will make this dazzling, #1 New York Times bestselling debut from author Kerri Maniscalco impossible to forget.
 

 

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The Ten Thousand Doors of January Book Review

The Ten Thousand Doors of January Book ReviewThe Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow

Overall Rating: ***

Romance: **

Reading Rate: *

Purchase on Amazon here

The story is written like a mix of a family and a scientific documentary surrounding Doors to other worlds. As a young girl January finds a door to another world in a field while traveling with her caretaker Mr. Locke. Over the years January begins to shape up into a “proper young woman” and leave the fantasies behind, until her father goes missing and she discovers a book all about the Doors and the journey of a woman names Ade.

What I liked:

  • I really enjoyed the premise of this book and the ideas presented could really go a long way.
  • The story is based in late 1800s to early 1900s but does work in a fantasy element with the Doors and some unique characters. I think someone who enjoys historical fiction with a little fantasy would enjoy this story.
  • There were a few love story lines in this book, but just be aware its more telling you a past story than getting to watch a romance form.
  • While not related to the story the cover for this book is absolutely gorgeous!!!

What I struggled with:

  • I had a very hard time getting into this book. I picked it up and put it down several times over a month or so and then finally forced myself to push through and finish. Had I not received an ARC for review I would have DNF’d. While I struggled I do think this was mostly due to personal preferences in the amount of action in my reading.
  • The first two thirds of the book were largely building backstory, and then January started to take action in her own life around the final third of the book. .

Synopsis:

In the early 1900s, a young woman searches for her place in the world after finding a mysterious book in this captivating and lyrical debut. 

In a sprawling mansion filled with peculiar treasures, January Scaller is a curiosity herself. As the ward of the wealthy Mr. Locke, she feels little different from the artifacts that decorate the halls: carefully maintained, largely ignored, and utterly out of place.

Then she finds a strange book. A book that carries the scent of other worlds, and tells a tale of secret doors, of love, adventure and danger. Each page turn reveals impossible truths about the world and January discovers a story increasingly entwined with her own.

Thank you to NetGalley and Red Hook books for the opportunity to read The Ten thousand Doors of January in exchange my honest review.

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Vow of Thieves Book Review

Vow of Thieves by Mary Pearson. Book 2 of the Dance of Thieves Duology.

Overall: ****

Romance: **

Reading Rate: *****

Pages: 496

Order on Amazon: Here

**Spoilers for book 1 Dance of Thieves, click here for my spoiler free review of the first book**

After the cliffhangers in the ending the Dance of Thieves I dove right into Vow of Thieves and devoured it in a day and a half. The story picks up right where the first book left off as Kazi and Jase prepare to finally approach Tors Watch and discover what has happened while they were away.  There was never a dull moment through the final book. Pearson takes you on an emotional coaster as the town and family fight for survival. Plots are uncovered that don’t just compromise the town but potentially the world as they know it. You are left wondering who if anyone will make it out alive and will the love between Kazi and Jase endure.

This novel continues to build out the robust world started in the originally trilogy and adds in many more characters to love. I enjoyed the character arcs that they were less “royal”. Pearson writes some vicious villains and fierce females. I actually enjoyed this series more than the Remnant Chronicles but do feel you need to read them first to understand the back story.

Synopsis:

Kazi and Jase have survived, stronger and more in love than ever. Their new life now lies before them―the Ballengers will be outlaws no longer, Tor’s Watch will be a kingdom, and Kazi and Jase will meet all challenges side by side, together at last.

But an ominous warning mars their journey back, and they soon find themselves captured in a tangled web of deceit woven by their greatest enemies and unlikeliest allies, a place where betrayals run deeper and more deadly than either had thought possible, and where timeless ambitions threaten to destroy them both.

That you to NetGalley and Henry Holt and Co. (BYR) for a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.

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Nevernight Book Review

Nevernight by Jay Kristoff, Book 1 of the Nevernight Chronicle.

Overall: ****

Romance: ****

Reading Rate: ***

Pages: 464

Purchase on Amazon: Here

Holy cow I was not prepared!!!! Nevernight has been allllll over the book community as a much read since I joined last year. Due to that hype I was a bit nervous to read, but after reading Illuminae and loving Kristoff’s work so much I decided to give it a try.

I actually had a hard time getting into the very beginning of the book and picked it up and put it down a few times over the last few months. Once I made it past the first few chapters I was hooked and blew through the rest of the book.

What I liked:

  • As Jay warns this is NOT a YA book and has quite a bit of wonderful violence and smut, that while is a personal preference is certainly not for everyone.
  • While I was able to predict some of the overall plot points you really never know 100% who is “good/bad” or if anyone is ever safe.
  • Mr Kindley!!! If you have read any of Jay or Jay/Amie works you know first hand how lovable and  they can make there characters and Nevernight brought it 100%.

What I struggled with:

  • The story does tend to jump from past to present a bit. This was necessary for the story line and building out the history but it can make it a little challenging to read.
  • The footnotes can be challenging, I started out trying to read them and then just started skipping. Most of them are really interesting information about the world and funny snips from Jay, but I didn’t feel like I missed out on the story line by skipping them.

Synopsis:

Nevernight is the first in an epic new fantasy series from the New York Times bestselling author, Jay Kristoff.

In a land where three suns almost never set, a fledgling killer joins a school of assassins, seeking vengeance against the powers who destroyed her family.

Daughter of an executed traitor, Mia Corvere is barely able to escape her father’s failed rebellion with her life. Alone and friendless, she hides in a city built from the bones of a dead god, hunted by the Senate and her father’s former comrades. But her gift for speaking with the shadows leads her to the door of a retired killer, and a future she never imagined.

Now, a sixteen year old Mia is apprenticed to the deadliest flock of assassins in the entire Republic ― the Red Church. Treachery and trials await her with the Church’s halls, and to fail is to die. But if she survives to initiation, Mia will be inducted among the chosen of the Lady of Blessed Murder, and one step closer to the only thing she desires.

Revenge.

After the ending of Nevernight I dove right into the second book Godsgrave and pre-ordered the final book in the trilogy Darkdawn (that releases in September).