ARC Review The Brilliant Death by Amy Rose Capetta

34198648 For Teodora DiSangro, a mafia don’s daughter, family is fate.

All her life, Teodora has hidden the fact that she secretly turns her family’s enemies into music boxes, mirrors, and other decorative objects. After all, everyone in Vinalia knows that stregas—wielders of magic—are figures out of fairytales. Nobody believes they’re real.

Then the Capo, the land’s new ruler, sends poisoned letters to the heads of the Five Families that have long controlled Vinalia. Four lie dead and Teo’s beloved father is gravely ill. To save him, Teo must travel to the capital as a DiSangro son—not merely disguised as a boy, but transformed into one.

Enter Cielo, a strega who can switch back and forth between male and female as effortlessly as turning a page in a book. Teo and Cielo journey together to the capital, and Teo struggles to master her powers and to keep her growing feelings for Cielo locked in her heart. As she falls in love with witty, irascible Cielo, Teo realizes how much of life she’s missed by hiding her true nature. But she can’t forget her mission, and the closer they get to the palace, the more sinister secrets they uncover about what’s really going on in their beloved country—and the more determined Teo becomes to save her family at any cost.

Jan’s Review

“I received this ARC as part of Miss Print’s ARC Adoption Program.”

This is amazing well thought out delightful shape-shifting magical story.  Our main character who is a strega with the ability to turn people into everday objects.  In the course of events she needs to take off on a journey to save her farther and her family but can only do it as a boy.  Having no idea how to transform herself or have her magic do it for her she comes across a strega with just that magical quality.  Along the journey Teo learns more about who she is as a girl and how the world works as she takes on the persona of a boy in a world dominated by males.

I think this story is really going to speak this generation of teens who are facing a whole new question of who we are as people.  I not gonna say where i stand on the whole gender identity that not what my review is about it just saying that in a time when that is on the forefront is nice to have books in fantasy that are able to weave those issues into a delightful story.

The world building is well thought out and the characters are well developed in who they are as either brutal or kind.  Each character evolves as the story goes on and leaves you wondering if their be more story.  I not sure if this being marked as a stand alone or will have future books i am eager to find out if their more story cause their still lots that can be told.   I gave this book a huge 5 stars for its creativity, revalance to today, and the ability to leave us guessing to the end.

 

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Book Review Harbinger (Dragonrider Legacy) by Nicole Conway

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Amazon link

Victory is written in the blood of the brave.

As the armies of the Tibran Empire continue to march across Maldobar, apath of scorched destruction and despair is left in their wake. Even with the formidable princess, Jenna Farrow, leading the charge, the strength of the dragonriders is waning. Tibran victory appears inevitable–especially after Princess Jenna and Prince Aubren are taken hostage by the infamous Lord Argonox. Separated from her brother and tortured for information, Princess Jenna refuses to bend to the iron will of Argonox. But her strength and resolve may only last so long. Held prisoner in his dark tower, it would take a miracle to set her free–or perhaps a pair of demigods and their dragons.

With revived dragonrider legend, Jaevid Broadfeather, at his side, Reigh must now make a choice: face the truth about the origin of his dark powers,or turn his back on world in need. But throwing off a lifetime of shame and self-doubt is not so easily done–especially when the cost of failure means the destruction of the world. The long-awaited hero has awakened. The ancient spirits are stirring. The dark goddess has chosen her champion. But is he ready to embrace that rite and become the Harbinger Maldobar needs him to be?

Jan’s Review

 

In this second book of the series we get to meet the first female dragonrider who is not only a dragonrider called by her dragon but he also a outcasted princess.  She been banished by her farther but Jenna is perfectly fine with this.  She got some serious guts their are some intense parts of this story where i was sure she was going to end up dead.

Jaevid Broadfeather comes back to life, will he be the legend that everyone been waiting for, and is Reigh the perfect opposite in every way that will save Maldobar from the Tibrans.  With lots of edge your seat action, sarcasm, and a bit of romance this series does not let up to the very end with a huge plot twist and a crushing cliff hanger.  This series is one you will gobble up.   I eager to see how this all plays out in Legend.

 

Book Review Spellbound (Shadow Spells #1) by Chandra A. Rooney (

38751646 ONE CHOICE MAY COST HER EVERYTHING…

Charlotte “Charlie” O’Connor and her family are part of The Covenant, a secret society of witches and warlocks sworn to eradicate all vampires from existence. When her dad is kidnapped by Santiago, an ex- Covenant member turned vampire leader, Charlie knows she can’t take him down alone.

Enter Cole Mathieson, a night club owner with a secret. He’s a vampire/warlock hybrid, she doesn’t trust him but has no choice when her brother is cursed with an ancient voodoo spell which will cost him his sanity. Charlie vows to do whatever it takes to find her father and save her brother. Even if it means taking the spell into herself, and allying with a potentially dangerous—and attractive—hybrid.

Jan’s Review

This story has it all Vampires, Werewolves & Witches and of course a swoony forbidden romance.  Charlie is on the hunt for her farther who has been kidnapped by the notorious Santiago the head of the vampires and ex convent member.  With no clue to how to find Santiago she finally tracks down a hybrid who knows how to find him.  His name is cole and he is dripping with danger and seduction.  This story had me hooked from the first page.  The story flows along at a heart pounding pace and the author does a great job of juggling the various characters in play in the story.  I am eager to see where it goes.

 

ARC Book Review Uncharted by Erin Cashman

37941893 Seventeen-year-old Annabeth prefers the fantasy of her books and paintings to reality—because in reality, her mom is dead, and it was all her fault. When she accompanies her father to the funeral of some family friends who drowned, she’s surprised to find her grief reflected in the face of Griffin Bradford, the son of the couple who died. Griffin is nothing like the carefree boy she once knew. Now he’s irritable, removed, and he’s under police investigation for his parents’ deaths.

One night following the memorial service, Annabeth’s dad goes missing in the woods, and she suspects Griffin knows more about the disappearance than he’s letting on. He refuses to answer her questions, particularly those related to the mysterious “expedition” his parents took to Ireland, where they went missing for seven months.

Annabeth fears her father isn’t lost, but rather a victim of something sinister. She launches her own investigation, tracing clues that whisper of myth and legend and death, until she stumbles upon a secret. One that some would die to protect, others would kill to expose—and which twists Annabeth’s fantasy and reality together in deadly new ways.

Jan’s Review

This is a contemporary fantasy which is not my normal cup of tea.  This one intrigued me though with the irish folklore that it centers around this mysterious magical island  Hy-Brasil, a place that once appeared on ancient maps somewhere west of Ireland.   The book faced paced and centers largely around the disappearance of annabeth farther.  I found that story focused way to much on this almost like the author used it as a crutch to bring out the different parts of the story and what really happened on Hy-Basil.  The story is not terrible but since i more of a lover of high fantasy it dragged for me.  Their is a nice swoony romance that blossoms between Griffin and Annabeth.   All in all if you like a bit of mystery and less magic i say dive on in this one.

 

Blog Tour Star-Touched Stories by Roshani Chokshi

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Three lush and adventurous stories in the Star-Touched world.

Death and Night

He was Lord of Death, cursed never to love. She was Night incarnate, destined to stay alone. After a chance meeting, they wonder if, perhaps, they could be meant for more. But danger crouches in their paths, and the choices they make will set them on a journey that will span lifetimes.

Poison and Gold

Now that her wish for a choice has come true, Aasha struggles to control her powers. But when an opportunity to help Queen Gauri and King Vikram’s new reign presents itself, she is thrown into the path of the fearsome yet enchanting Spy Mistress. To help her friends, Aasha will have to battle her insecurities and perhaps, along the way, find love.

Rose and Sword

There is a tale whispered in the dark of the Empire of Bharat-Jain. A tale of a bride who loses her bridegroom on the eve of her wedding. But is it a tale or a truth?

Jan’s Review

This book was lovely! I loved getting to know more about the world and the characters from her other stories. If you love Roshani Chokshi’s writing as much as I do you will love this story!!! It always a nice little touch when you get a few additional stories that add more flavor to the characters you fallen in love with.

Roshani Chokshi CREDIT Aman Sharma

ROSHANI CHOKSHI is the New York Times bestselling author of The Star-Touched QueenA Crown of Wishes, and Aru Shah and the End of Time. Her work has appeared in Strange HorizonsShimmer, and Book Smugglers. Her short story, “The Star Maiden,” was longlisted for the British Fantasy Science Award.
 
Advanced Praise:
“Lush and ornate ribbons of language… rich and dizzying.”
The New York Times Book Review on The Star-Touched Queen
 
“The sentence-level beauty of this book often stunned me: There’s a smooth, understated loveliness to the writing that kept catching me off guard. In Chokshi’s prose, voices have substance and texture while light has color and flavor; never have I wanted to munch on books so much as after reading…Solidly crafted and very engaging, this is a smooth, lovely and assured debut.”
NPR.org on The Star-Touched Queen
 
“It’s gorgeously written and exceptionally intriguing, and Chokshi’s lush world is one you won’t want to leave.”
Buzzfeed “Top 18 Books to Read this Spring” on A Crown of Wishes
 
“The tale is spellbinding, each character is well developed and interesting, and obvi we are so happy.”
Bustle “Best YA Books of March” on A Crown of Wishes

Book Review Endless Water, Starless Sky (Bright Smoke, Cold Fire #2) by Rosamund Hodge

21825776In the last days of the world, the walls of Viyara are still falling, and the dead are rising faster than ever.

Juliet is trapped—ordered by Lord Ineo of the Mahyanai to sacrifice the remaining members of her family, the Catresou, to stave off the end of the world. Though they’re certain his plan is useless, Juliet and her former friend Runajo must comply with Lord Ineo’s wishes—unless they can discover a different, darker path to protecting Viyara.

Romeo is tortured: finally aware that his true love is alive, he is at once elated and devastated, for his actions led directly to the destruction of her clan. The only way to redemption is to offer his life to the Catresou to protect and support them . . . even if it means dying to do so.

When Romeo’s and Juliet’s paths converge once again, only a journey into Death will offer answers and the key to saving them all—but is it a journey either of them will survive?

Jan’s Review

This is the sequel to Rosamund retelling of Romeo and Juliet with zombies.  Just like Pride and Prejudice with zombies i thought it was done very well.  This new series re imagines Shakespeare’s story of feuding families and doomed lovers in a city threatened by necromancers and protected by “the Juliet,” a girl born in every generation with powerful magic.  You got a little bit of everything in this series and it a nice two book series as well so your not investing a lot in a zombie book if that not your thing.  I really did enjoy and zombies are not high on my list of favorites.

 

ARC Book Review Golden Curse (The True Story of Rapunzel #1)

golden curse A curse. A hidden identity. A dangerous love.

Ten year old Persinette Basile was forced to flee the palace of Gaule for her life.

Now at eighteen, she must find a way to return in order to obey a curse on her family line.

The prince won’t know who she is. Not anymore. But she knows him and what he will do if he discovers her true name.

Made to fight for her life to earn her place, she vows to find a way to break the curse no matter the cost.

——-

To. The. Death.

The words describing the tournament turn Prince Alexandre Durand’s blood to ice.

The last warrior standing will win a spot at his side.

As he’s thrust onto the throne, forbidden magic, dangerous betrayals, and a complicated love could tear his reign apart.

When the secrets begin to unravel, will Alex stay true to the laws and traditions of Gaule or will he give it all up for a woman who deceived him?

Inspired by the Rapunzel story, this is the golden-haired princess as you’ve never seen her before.

Amazon link

Jan’s Review

Rapunzel has been one of the stories that can be viewed from a few different angles and the refreshing take that this author gives is magical. Childhood friends torn apart by a cuse that will bring the whole world crashing down.  We have a steamy romance, betrayal and forbidden use of magic in a world that cringes from it.  I especially enjoyed the kind of fiery Etta who faces the lost of her farther, the pain of a curse she does not want and the loss of the greatest friendship and love she ever known.  Cursed by her blood line she in a fight to save herself and those like her as the one she loves and thought would love her back hunts her down.  Excited to see where the story goes.