Friday, 31 January 2014

Review ~ Death is but a Dream by Erin Hayes

Death is but a Dreamebook received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: 26th September 2013


Caught between life and death, all Callie wants is to live again.

Homicide detective Callie Saunders knows that death isn’t all pearly gates and angels. After being hit by a bus, she finds that it's the ancient gods and goddesses of Greek mythology who are in charge of everything.

So when Hades offers her a deal, she accepts. If she wants to be brought back to life, she’ll have to figure out who is trying to kill his son. But if she fails, both her soul and the world will be destroyed.

With the odds mounting against her, it’ll take everything she has within her to wake up from death. But the rules are constantly changing. And someone wants her to stay dead.

My Opinion

This book sounded great from the description. A mystery about the attempted murder of a god from ancient mythology - who could want more? However this book has torn me now that I have finished it.

In Death is but a Dream everything started off great. The story moved at a fast-pace, it captured my attention instantly and it kept me hooked. As Callie gets thrown into the afterlife the book got even more interesting due to the addition of the Gods and the deal with Hades. It set everything up nicely for what I thought was going to be a great detective story with a paranormal element. I also liked how the author used a bit of imagination with the gods. Rather than stick to the ancient look and feel, she modernised them which I thought was a good twist that separated it from the other books involving these characters. It also allowed the book to be an easy read as there was more similarities with today than the past.

As the book moved on I found that the suspense and mystery as to who was behind Plutus's assassination attempts to be kept up well. I couldn't guess who was behind it all until it was revealed. Callie's desire to protect was crafted well and although she did have her slight annoyances (repeatedly telling everyone to call her by her nickname when they didn't) I did find I liked her.

However, after the 'killer' was revealed halfway through, this is where my problems started. After this it became all about Callie protecting Plutus while they were on the run and they slowly fell for each other. Personally I don't think the romance added anything to this book and in fact I found it annoying. The start was set up so well and the mystery was so entertaining that I feel the romance just wasn't needed. I would have liked the identity of the 'killer' to be kept a secret longer rather than include romance. Normally, I love anything romance but I just didn't feel it worked in this book.

As well as this, because you find out who is trying to kill Plutus so early on, I found the ending a little anti-climactic.I read it and all that I thought was "really, that's it? How can you end it like that?" I feel if you include a romance in a book, it shouldn't end the way it did as it wasn't satisfying.

There were also parts that were a little too descriptive about things I didn't need to know-especially when on the run. As you can see, I'm trying really hard not to give away what happens in the second half as I don't want to spoil the book for you.
Overall though, I did enjoy Death is but a Dream more than I thought I would. The first half was brilliant but I feel it was let down by the romance and the ending. However, saying that, it's a good, easy read that paranormal, mystery fans should enjoy.

Thursday, 30 January 2014

Review ~ Pushing the Limits (Pushing the Limits #1) by Katie McGarry

Pushing the Limits (Pushing the Limits, #1)Purchased by myself

Release Date: August 3rd 2012

Publisher: MIRA Ink (Harlequin)

So wrong for each other...and yet so right.

No one knows what happened the night Echo Emerson went from popular girl with jock boyfriend to gossiped-about outsider with "freaky" scars on her arms. Even Echo can't remember the whole truth of that horrible night. All she knows is that she wants everything to go back to normal. But when Noah Hutchins, the smoking-hot, girl-using loner in the black leather jacket, explodes into her life with his tough attitude and surprising understanding, Echo's world shifts in ways she could never have imagined. They should have nothing in common. And with the secrets they both keep, being together is pretty much impossible.Yet the crazy attraction between them refuses to go away. And Echo has to ask herself just how far they can push the limits and what she'll risk for the one guy who might teach her how to love again.

My Opinion

I first discovered this series through NetGalley when I read Dare You To. I then ended up reading Crash into You from NetGalley when I got an arc, so you could say I've read this series in a weird order even if they can be read individually. Pushing the Limits has been sat on my kindle for months as I got it on free download but it wasn't until I purchased the paperback did I finally sit down to read it. I'm not sure why, maybe it was because it was the first book and because I'd read the others I pushed it to the side even though they are really stand-alone books.

Anyway, I'm glad I didn't put it off any longer. This book tugged at my heart strings more than the others in the series. Although I knew who Noah and Echo were from the other books I didn't know their full story and it was nice to be let in on that and how everything slotted into place. You can see where the author has carried certain things on and it also quantified their love in book 2 and 3 as I saw it develop and grow.

Pushing the Limits had everything I'd come to expect from this author. The emotions were believable, the characters deep and interesting and it keeps you engaged. I felt for Echo and Noah, they were easy to sympathise and engage with and I couldn't stop reading their story. Everything moved at a fast-pace but I liked how Echo's memory restraints left the information coming in drips. I also like how she worked with her counsellor and the relationship between Noah, Echo and Mrs Collins developed - it was very well crafted and the slow build up added to its believability.

Overall I can't believe I waited so long to read book one and now I'm am highly anticipating book four. This series is a must read.

Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Review ~ United We Spy (Gallagher Girls #6) by Ally Carter

United We Spy (Gallagher Girls, #6)Purchased by myself

Release Date: 5th September 2013

Publisher: Orchard Books

Cammie Morgan has lost her father and her memory, but in the heart-pounding conclusion to the best-selling Gallagher Girls series, she finds her greatest mission yet. Cammie and her friends finally know why the terrorist organization called the Circle of Cavan has been hunting her. Now the spy girls and Zach must track down the Circle’s elite members to stop them before they implement a master plan that will change Cammie—and her country—forever.

My Opinion

I first picked up this series on a whim while I was waiting for a friend in a book shop. It came with a free nail file (not that I needed one) but I'm all about freebies so it swayed my vote. Yeah I know...don't judge me. Quickly after that I fell in love with Cammie and Ally Carters writing, at least for the first three books.

After that, I found they were becoming a bit repetitive and far-fetched. I kept reading because I hate stopping a series mid way through and although my attention with every book slowly got less and less they are still easy and quick reads that have their good points.

Personally, United We Spy was more about closure for me. I wanted to complete the series and I'm glad the author stopped at six books rather than continue to drag stories out when they aren't there *cough* House of Night *cough.* The book came to a good ending and I thought that it felt right, with the girls coming to the end of their academic career. It ties everything up nicely and leaves you with no unanswered questions.

However, I do feel that parts like the romance and a few action scenes were under developed and I would have like more description. There was a lot packed into the book with everything moving quickly from one thing to another and some of it was a little on the unrealistic side for me. I know they're teen spies but I think there is a limit to what you can get away with by using that as an excuse for everything. I did find myself asking 'really??' a lot.

Anyway, I'm not going to say any more as it is the final book in a series. The series as a whole was enjoyable but I don't think the final books were as good as the first - everything just got too big an unrealistic. Saying that though, I would recommend Ally Carter as an author. I like her style and will be reading Heist Society soon.

Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Review ~ Souls Mates by L. A. Weatherly

Soul MatesPaperback received from the publisher

Release Date: 14th January 2014

Publisher: Barrington and Stoke


Beautiful and intriguing paranormal romance about two teenagers whose love is so special that nothing can keep them apart - not even time. Iris and Nate have dreamed of each other all of their lives. When they meet by chance in an abandoned house, they discover that their dreams were more than fantasy - they are soul mates, destined to be together. But someone or something is watching them, determined to tear them apart. Will Iris and Nate's love be strong enough to survive the test of time?

My Opinion

I love this author's work so I was ecstatic when I received a copy of Soul Mates from the publisher. I knew it was going to be short and it was a perfect read that broke up my own writing nicely.

Taking about only half an hour to read I don't want to say much besides it is a quick, easy read that was engaging. The romance element is sweet and everything flows nicely. Standing at 86 pages, I was glad I won it as, although I love this author, I'm not sure I'd spend £6.99 for the amount of story you actually get. I'm really hoping the next two will be priced more reasonably because I love this author and would like to continue reading Nate and Iris's story.

Sunday, 26 January 2014

Review ~ The Angelites - Turning Point by Richard Moran

The Angelites - Turning Pointebook downloaded on Amazon free day after being told by the author

Release Date: November 12th 2013

The original story states that Gina Vasquez overcame a ten-year obstacle before starting her divine journey to save the world as an angelic warrior, an Angelite. She was a strong-willed woman with a goal and a purpose, to serve true justice for hardworking citizens like herself and her family. This story will show the tragic event that caused Gina’s happy life to spiral out of control. Five years ago she was just a police academy rookie, daringly rescuing teens from a near-fatal car crash. Five years from now Gina will become depressed, alone and miles away from her family. Why? How did she turn from a promising officer to a spiritless sheriff? Where was the turning point? For those who have read the book - this story will bridge the gap between the Syracuse mountains rescue and the firefight with the evil cult, The Spawns of Satan.For those who haven’t read the book - take a glimpse of Gina at her weakest state, dealing with challenges that she thought she would never encounter. Witness the diversity that prevented her from becoming the divine superhero she was meant to be.

My Opinion

After rating the first book in this series four stars last year, I was interested to read a short story taken from a section of Gina's life to see what had made her into the character she was in The Angelites. I didn't really know what to expect going in or what part of her life it was going to be about when I started reading but I found that a lot of the story from book one came back to me as I  continued reading.

Because this is only a short story I'm not going to say too much. I would recommend reading Angelites before you pick up Turning point as it will make a lot more sense then. However, if you've read book one, Turning point is a nice addition to the story. It flows well, and I liked the background detail of how Gina got to that moment in her life and what made her make the decisions she had. It was a very quick read and if you like The Angelites, you may want to check this out.

Friday, 24 January 2014

Review ~ Untouched (Beachwood Bay 0.5) by Melody Grace

Untouched (Beachwood Bay, #0.5)ebook bought by myself on an Amazon free day

Release Date: May 14th 2013

Emerson Ray is trouble. Juliet knows it the minute she lays eyes on Beachwood Bay's resident bad boy. Forced to spend her summer before college in the sleepy beach town, she never expected to crash into the most devastating guy she’s ever met—or for Emerson’s blue eyes to strip through her dark secrets, and make her feel a desire she’s never known. Their connection is undeniable, but Juliet is torn. She knows, once she gives him everything, there’ll be no turning back.

Juliet McKenzie is dangerous. Emerson can tell from the way she blows through all his defences, laying bare the demons he’s carried alone all his life. He’s left a trail of broken hearts and empty beds in his wake, but Juliet is different. Her innocence is intoxicating—and the passion she keeps hidden, just below the surface. He wants to be the only one to set it free, but with every kiss, he’s closer to losing control and doing the one thing he swore he never would: fall in love.

One summer. Two damaged hearts. Their story is only just beginning…

UNTOUCHED is a prequel novella to the USA Today Bestselling UNBROKEN. It also can be read as a stand-alone story.

My Opinion

I will admit that when I saw this novella the only reason I downloaded it was because it was free. I was going down the kindle free list and downloading most romances on there, and although most still remain unread, I started Untouched because it was a short romance novella. I didn't know what to expect as it has taken me months to get to but I found myself pleasantly surprised.

Untouched was a good, fast-paced read that flowed well from start to finish. I liked how the time scale was short so rather than drag out the story and make it choppy, the fact that it was isolated to only a few days/weeks made it easy to follow and keep up with. Also the dual points of view worked well which was a surprise as I don't normally enjoy it in a novella. 

Anyway, the stroyline was interesting and engaging. I did find a little aspects a bit extreme such as the whirlwind romance but it's to be expected from a novella really as there aren't enough pages to create a whole background. Also the fact that this is an extra to the author's series about these characters probably means all the details are included in the actual books. However, saying that the description is right when it states it can be read as a stand-alone. That's what I did and I could follow the story easily without getting lost or questioning what was what.

Overall, Untouched was a short, engaging read. I liked the characters and I may have to check out the books in this series.


Wednesday, 22 January 2014

Book Spotlight ~ Djinn (Djinn #1) by Laura Catherine

Djinn (Djinn, #1)Djinn

Release Date: December 16th 2013

Genre: YA, Paranormal Romance

Kyra’s life is far from normal.

She’s been on the run for as long as she can remember and her father is the only stable thing in her life, but everything changes when the people pursuing them finally catch up.

Kyra is abducted by the handsome and mysterious, Will. He takes her to a secret compound where she is told the truth: She’s a Djinn, a genie-like creature with super powers and a love of dogs.

Kyra has to adjust to the Djinn and their rules, but her new life is far from perfect. Everyone is hiding something and the one person Kyra cares about most is forbidden to her.

There are secrets around every corner and more dangers than Kyra could ever imagine as she struggles to find herself and be with the one she loves.

Buy the eBook
|  Amazon Int’l  |  B&N   |  iTunes  |  Kobo  |
Buy the Paperback
|  Amazon  |   B&N   |  Book Depository  |

About the Author

Laura Catherine is Young Adult author focusing on Paranormal Romance, Dystopia, and Fantasy.

She writes stories full of action, secrets, and magic. She loves creating worlds where anything is possible and everyone has a story to tell. She has an over-active imagination, spends a lot of her time daydreaming, and wishes pokemon were real so she would have one.

Laura Catherine lives in Melbourne, Australia.


Monday, 20 January 2014

Review ~ Ghost Unbroken by Annie McLeod

Ghost Unbroken
ebook purchased on an Amazon free day by myself

Release Date: October 21st 2013



Her future is set, her life mapped out, but one unexpected meeting turns her carefully laid plans upside down. (This is the complete version of the free short story published under the title "Ghost.")

My Opinion
It was the beautiful cover that attracted me into downloading this when I saw it on the Amazon Kindle free list. I needed some short, quick reads to break up my own editing and this book fit the description perfectly.

Ghost Unbroken was a very short, fast-pace read that has a lot crammed into the small amount of pages. It flows by quickly and overall a sweet story with some darker secrets.

Although its short, I liked Sophie and her determination to be better and have better, not only for herself but also for Bethany. It was believable and although the issues are not described in detail you get enough so as not to b confused. As well as this, the slight paranormal aspect was good. I did feel it was an easy way of keeping the book short as John always seemed to appear and come up with the right answers so I'm not sure if it was really needed but I think in the end I liked John too much to say he should have been cut.

The one issue I had with this novella was that it covers a big period of time and I found when the moments came for it to fast forward I was left a bit confused as to how far ahead I was in the characters' lives. Most novellas I read focus on about a week or a few days, not a few years and although it allowed the author to cram in a bit more history and drama I did feel it should have occurred over a shorter time span or the time switches should have been made clearer. I think this might have been down to the fact this is three short stories but into one novella.

Overall Ghost Unbroken is a quick easy read that you just fly through. It was a good break from my own work.


Sunday, 19 January 2014

Review ~ The Fireside Inn (The Billionaire Bachelors #1) by Lily Everett

The Fireside Inn (The Billionaire Bachelors, #1)ebook received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: January 17th 2014

Publisher: St Martin's Press

They're gorgeous, they're rich, they're single, and they're determined to stay that way for life...until they take a trip to Sanctuary Island. Don't miss this unforgettable new novella trilogy about three billionaire bachelors who are about to discover that sometimes you have to let go of the life you planned in order to embrace the life of your dreams.

In the first novella, The Fireside Inn, Lord Leo Stratham seems to have it all. But when he meets Sanctuary Island's quirky young librarian, he's intrigued. Serena is unlike anyone he's ever met before, and he's determined to get to know her a whole lot better. Yet despite the simmering attraction between them, she isn't interested in putting up with a pampered playboy...unless he can convince her to take a chance on him.

My Opinion

I've been looking for short romance novellas lately as because I've been busy with my own work I haven't had the time to read long novels. So, when I came across this series on NetGalley I requested them instantly. They looked perfect and exactly what I was after. However, this was the only one I was allowed access to so I was slightly disappointed as they all looked so good.

Anyway, The Fireside Inn was exactly what it say. It was a sweet romance that I engaged with easily and allowed me to escape my boring train journey for an hour. I was intrigued by the start instantly - with Miles making the other bachelors a bet. It was interesting and I liked how that was explained before the story moved onto Leo and Serena. I can only guess that the other books start similar and follow the other bachelors mentioned as they visit Sanctuary Island.  

I found the romance and emotions to be believable and I engaged with the characters well for the short amount of pages. I may have liked a little more backstory with Leo as there wasn't really much but the twist did surprise me. I wasn't expecting him to reveal what he did. I also liked Serena's stronger side when she showed it. Her passion for her job was evident throughout and I could relate well to her.

The only thing that irritated me slightly was that Leo, although a lord, was portrayed as the stereotypical Brit and some of the language used didn't seem natural. It seems Americans like this stereotype but as a British reader the constant referrals to his accent did annoy me slightly as that difference is always thrown in your face. A few times I can handle, but once you've stated the character is British why is there a constant need to remind the reader?

Overall though, The Fireside Inn was a quick, easy read that I thought flowed well. I liked the author's style and I think it made a nice change that the sex in this book is glossed over, and there is no description of it. It's a shame that I wasn't accepted to read the next two in the series as I would have loved to continue the series straight after finishing this novella on the train but oh well. If you're looking for a short, general romance check this novella out.

Friday, 17 January 2014

ARC Review ~ A Matchless Romance (Aisle Bound #4) by Christi Barth

A Matchless Romance (Aisle Bound, #4)eARC received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: February 17th 2014

Publisher: Carina Press

Tabitha Bell is the face of Chicago's premiere matchmaking service. At least, she hopes it will be someday, once business really takes off. What she needs is more clients, so when she meets a sexy gamer in need of help, it's the perfect opportunity.

His discomfort talking to women almost cost Drew Watson his job. He'd be happy holed up in his office, designing blockbuster video games, but his boss considers talking to investors a nonnegotiable requirement. Who better than a matchmaker to teach him how to be comfortable around the opposite sex? Trouble is, Drew wants to get more than comfortable with Tabitha, while she's determined to keep their relationship all business.

Soon Tabitha learns that beneath the geek-chic hoodie lies six feet of sexy physique--and the more time she spends with Drew, the more she appreciates his brainy brand of charm. Will she succumb to his sweet-but-nerdy charm offensive or will it be game over before he can win her heart?

My Opinion

I'm struggling with this novella really. Normally I am a fan books that include gamers/guys who don't fit in looking for romance and the match making element in this book intrigued me. I thought there would be a lot more to this book and although it is good, I think the main reason I'm struggling to put my thoughts into words because it didn't blow me but it didn't make me hate it. I'm stuck in the middle with my opinion.

The pacing in this book was good and it flowed well. It was a quick, short and engaging read that did hold my interest and I liked the concept. I liked that Drew was a good-looking geek and totally oblivious to his effects on people. I also liked how he spoke his mind around women. The way he insulted one of his clients made me smile. They were great sections and put a smile on my face. I also liked how Tabitha brought out a more confident and natural side to him. 

I liked the concept of the match maker and how Tabitha was willing to help him even though her business was slightly different. I also thought the way the relationship started and the way the characters met was great. However, after that I fell out of love with the relationship as it built. Towards the middle the characters were just so stupid with not realising their feelings or thinking the other person wouldn't return them that it just made me want to bang their heads together. I can stand it to a point but I feel the author let this section go on slightly too long before the book picked it back up. Thankfully at the end the book did pick back up and there were more sparks between the couple. It also ended well with a HEA.

The only other thing I didn't really connect with in this book was the style. Although it moved at a quick pace and the speech sections were really good, I found the other sections to ramble slightly. It was a bit like the characters were always speaking their thoughts and I would have liked a bit more description of that and less of that. It did become slightly annoying hearing the same thing over again.

Overall, A Matchless Romance was a nice quick read that romance fans would probably enjoy.

Wednesday, 15 January 2014

Book Spotlight + Excerpt ~ Saved by the Spell (Anna Wolfe #2) by Casey Keen

Saved by the Spell (Anna Wolfe Series, Book #2)Saved by the Spells

Genre: Paranormal & Urban Fantasy Romance


Two worlds in danger.

A Grand Witch behind bars.

A stunning Werewolf and a devilishly handsome Warlock’s pursuit for her affections.

You think you have it bad? Grand Witch Anna Wolfe awakens to find herself imprisoned by Micah, the Prince of Darkness. Micah’s on a quest for world domination—and it’s not just the Netherworld that’s in danger. The human world is threatened as well. Now, it’s up to Anna to escape from Micah's clutches so she can locate The Scholars and an ancient book before both fall into the wrong hands.

With a fiercely loyal Werewolf and immensely powerful Warlock by her side, what can go wrong? 

A lot apparently. 

If fighting off the Prince of Darkness wasn’t enough, Anna’s emotions are a whirlwind, as she battles between what fate demands and what she actually wants.

*This storyline contains depictions of sexual activity and profanity*

Buy Links:


Heat flows under my skin like lava, boiling in my chest. I shift in the prison chair, hoping to displace my sudden fury. Micah turns back to me, smiling like a child.

“Ah, Valen,” he smiles coyly, “your Achilles heel.”
Hearing Valen’s name passing through his repulsive lips angers me more. “I'm going to kill you,” I promise him.

Micah strides over to me, bending down until he's right next to my ear. “I'm going to find him Anna... then I'm going to torture him over and over again while you watch,” he whispers softly, lightly grazing my earlobe with his lip. “I'm going to kill him right in front of you and once I’m finished with him, I am going to kill all of your family and friends—one by one, until you have no one left but me,” he finishes. “You are mine Anna, and nothing you can do will ever change that.”

My jaw tightens and I grind my teeth in anger. I squirm violently, attempting to spell the bindings off me. Rage takes over, blinding me of all rational thoughts. I need to get out of this chair and save Valen—as well as everyone else. The constraints refuse to budge and my magic is still unresponsive. I calm down unwillingly, deciding to conserve my energy. I glower at Micah as he throws his head back, laughing victoriously.

About the Author

I was born in Philadelphia, PA and grew up in the suburban outskirts of this amazing city. I love anything paranormal and/or supernatural - seriously I live in Philadelphia! For those of you who don’t know, this city is an awesomely haunted place! This healthy paranormal addiction has provided me the motivation to write my first book, “I’ll Be Damned.”

I graduated from Drexel University with a Bachelor's Degree in Psychology and I'm currently working on the Anna Wolfe Series.


Monday, 13 January 2014

Book Spotlight ~ Marcuria's End by Joshua Steelman

Marcuria's EndMarcuria's End

Genre: Fantasy

Publisher: Self-published

The world of Marcuria nears its predestined end. This is the last Age. The final Cleansing. Three unwitting harbingers—whose lives have been carefully constructed, vigilantly directed onto dark paths—are being prepared for this culmination. Monsters they are destined to be, not the heroes they always dreamed.

Alyn sees what others cannot: the Dark. This darkness infests the land, swarms over all creation. Even those he loves are infected with it. Hatred for the Dark festers as Alyn battles a raging torrent inside: an alluvion yearning to sweep this perceived blight out of existence.

Jarrod is a carousing layabout haunted by the trauma he suffered as a young child. He drowns himself in drink and the occasional girl to escape the constant, hellacious memories. Yet this isn’t enough. It can never be enough. For years, he has mulled over a solution, but his cowardice is too great of an impediment. Even so, the notion of revenge never wanders out of reach as it foments his craving for knowledge.

Gherart has just celebrated a major promotion to join the ranks of the Eldest’s personal guard. These elite guardsmen are recognized as national heroes, exemplars of virtue and honor. To have come this far, Gherart has had to transform himself into a new man, a religious man. This mighty change entailed purging his life of every connection to his criminal past; however, there is one tie he can’t cut loose: his best friend—a brother in spirit. . .a thief envious of Gherart.

Buy: Amazon

About the Author
I began writing a little more than seven years ago during a tremendously confusing and painful period of my life in which my mental health deteriorated rapidly over the course of a couple of weeks. Due to the immense confusion, my reality and my understandings of basic concepts shifted and changed over a short period of time, so I wrote out of desperation, in search of anything that would keep me “steady,” that would keep me anchored to anything solid, to anything of real substance. Out of this womb, the initial draft of Marcuria’s End was born. For many years, I struggled through tremendous adversity while steadily working on the book: shaping it, molding it into a worthy offering. Every ounce of my soul went into every word and every sentence because I believed in the art I was creating; this was my anchor to peace and clarity. Writing Marcuria’s End saved my life, and now I wish to share it with you, because I believe there is something of value contained within its pages, something worthy of your precious time and hard-earned money. I wouldn’t have published it otherwise.


Friday, 10 January 2014

ARC Review ~ Song of the Fireflies by J.A. Redmerski

Song of the FireflieseARC received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: 4th February 2014

Publisher: Forever (Grand Central Publishing)

Brayelle Bates has always been a force of nature. Even as a child, Bray's wild and carefree spirit intimidated everyone around her. The only person who's ever truly understood her is her best friend, Elias Kline. Though every fiber of her being wants to stay with Elias forever, Bray can't bear the thought of him discovering her agonizing history. She's done everything she can to keep him at arm's length, including moving away. But their undying bond was too strong a pull to deny, and Bray couldn't survive without him. Now she's back home with Elias, and things have never felt more right-until one fateful night changes everything. 

Elias vowed never to be separated from Bray again. So when she decides to flee in a desperate attempt to escape her destiny, Elias knows he must go with her. As the two try to make the most of their circumstance, taking up with a reckless group of new friends, Elias soon realizes there's a darkness driving Bray he can't ignore. Now in order to save her, he'll have to convince Bray to accept the consequences of their reality--even if it means losing her.

My Opinion

After reading both The Edge of Never and The Edge of Always and loving them both I couldn't wait to get my hands on Song of the Fireflies. When I saw it appear on NetGalley I requested it instantly as I love this author's style. The cover is also beautiful and the title interested me.

J. A Redmerski's other books made me cry, so I was intrigued to see if she could pull it off again. The Edge of Never is definitely a hard act to follow though so I didn't go in expecting to be put through another emotional rollercoaster - and I was glad I didn't. For me, although  did really enjoy Song of the Fireflies, it wasn't as good as her other books. Don't get me wrong, everything I loved in the author's style was still in the book and it was fast-paced, engaging and parts were moving, it just didn't leave me breathless.

Anyway, in Song of the Fireflies I felt the characterisation was good. I loved how it started, with the memories from when Bray and Elias were young and I felt it gave the book an innocent quality that contrasted well with the situation they later found themselves in. For me, it also helped solidify their relationship and made them feel like best-friends. Once again, J. A Redmerski did a brilliant job of creating realistic characters. It was easy to believe that Elias would do anything for Bray and he was my favourite as personally, I felt more of a connection with his emotions.

As well as this, I liked that the author gives a very broad over view of the amount of time that passes. The book is not limited to one year but rather split over many years. The author did a great job of making them flow seamlessly so the book wasn't jumpy and they also helped to keep a good pace throughout the entire novel. 

The main difference for me with Song of the Fireflies, is that it is a lot darker than The Edge of Never. It deals with suicide, drugs, crime and family problems and I think that was the reason I found it less breath taking. For me, Bray had too many issues and by the end, I did find myself losing sympathy for her. It just wasn't what I was expecting. I know issues like this comes as a package with this author, but for me there was too much focus on it.

Also, the only other issue I had was that at one point the story somehow ends up including Camyrn and Andrew (The Edge of Never leads). When I came across this section it took me aback and I couldn't understand the need for it. I thought this book was a stand-alone so I couldn't figure out why the author would link her series to it. It just felt too repetitive.

However, saying all of that, I did find Song of the Fireflies hard to put down. I love this author's writing style and I was pleased at how it ended. It felt a bit abrupt but that was because I was only on 89% of the document and expecting a few more chapters (the rest was an extract from The Edge of Never). I would recommend this book, but I would say not to go into reading it thinking of The Edge of Never and compare them if you enjoyed it. Song of the Fireflies is an intriguing read that hits upon some hard issues, but it does keep you hooked.


Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Review ~ One Kiss by Lisa Fox

One Kiss
ebook received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: 2nd January 2014

Publisher: HarperImpulse


Sometimes one kiss can change everything.
New Year's Eve is supposed to be a night for celebration and new beginnings. For best friends Kat and Dean, it is a nightmare filled with disastrous dates and enraged ex-girlfriends!

Lucky for them, they've got each other to help laugh off the embarrassing, and downright inappropriate, moments. But then midnight rolls around and neither of them have anyone to kiss…

There's no doubt this is a night they will always remember.

The real question is whether it will be a night they want to forget…

My Opinion

I'm so glad that I have been auto-approved on NetGalley for HarperImpulse as it meant I could start reading this novella straight away. However, I made the mistake of starting it at 1:00am while lying in bed and then couldn't put it down. I told myself I'd only read a couple of chapters, and because this novella is only 74 pages, it turned out that I had read 50% of the book already by that point. I didn't see the point in stopping then - I didn't want to either - so within another hour I had finished the entire thing and was so not ready to sleep. 

Anyway, One Kiss was everything I have come to expect from HarperImpulse authors. It was short, sweet and engaging. It had moments of heartbreak and comedy and One Kiss was one of those books that made you love the characters instantly. As soon as Dean called Kat I believed in their friendship and relationship with one another. I loved the playful teasing that quickly grew more intense and I think the author did a brilliant job of crafting the characters and developing the emotions the entire way through. I can't find anything bad to say about either one of them and for once I liked that they didn't have much of a background. For me this made the book very in the moment and it meant I could get swept up in the romance rather than burdened by their history.

As well as this, the book was written well and flowed effortlessly. It is written over a short period of time and I didn't even realise how much I had read until it was over. Although I can't fault the ending as it has everything you wish and hope for in a novella this size and everything that happened before that was crafted well, I was enjoying the story and author's style so much that I wish there was more of it - even though I don't think the story needed it (yes I'm aware that probably doesn't make sense).

I liked how the romance developed from a friendship and the build up and little twist was a nice addition. Once again, it made me believe the character's stories. Dean was sweet, funny and although described as hot, I couldn't help but see him as more of a cute guy because of his values and desires for the future. 

Overall One Kiss, had me staying up way later than I should have been (I've done nothing but this review today because I've been tired) but it was worth it. The story made me laugh, smile and I was truly engaged in the plot line. I will be looking out for other works by this author.


Book Spotlight ~ Stay a While in Ruby Lake by Sherrill Willis

Stay A While in Ruby LakeStay a While in Ruby Lake

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Publisher: Self-published

After a shooting incident—which left Sydney Greyson and her new sister-in-law, Annie Greyson, injured—the residents of Ruby Lake now face more difficulties than ever before. Sydney is left trying to navigate a new marriage and the upcoming arrival of her twins, while dealing with the fear that shadows her every waking moment. Annie is coming to terms with a life drastically different than the one she had hoped for, and makes some painful decisions regarding who will be in her life and who she must let go. Illana Garet will have to make some tough choices, and will gain and lose much during the process. Meanwhile, the women at the local coffee shop, the Stay a While, will do everything in their power to keep everyone’s spirits up, amid much laughter and love. 

None of the members of the close-knit group in Ruby Lake will be left unscathed in the upcoming events that will shape them all. Come with them to celebrate the joys and grieve the losses that touch us all. Join them to find out why so many choose to Stay a While in Ruby Lake.

Buy Links: Amazon

About the Author
Sherrill Willis is the author of the much loved Ruby Lake series. Ruby Lake is the first book which was published originally in 2011, but was re-released after being professionally edited in 2013. The second novel in the series, A Wedding in Ruby Lake, was released on 8/16/12, and the third, Stay A While in Ruby Lake, was released on 12/12/13. Sherrill lives in northern Wisconsin with her two sons, and - in addition to writing which is her passion - enjoys reading, meeting friends for coffee and loves talking to her readers on Facebook.

Tuesday, 7 January 2014

Review ~ Bring Me Home (Shattered Hearts #3) by Cassia Leo

Bring Me Home (Shattered Hearts, #3)eARC received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: 19th December 2013

Publisher: Random House UK, Transworld

Sometimes letting someone go is the ultimate act of love.

Claire Nixon is a college student with a past full of secrets and heartbreak. She was saved once by her first love, and rock star, Chris Knight. But when she encouraged Chris to leave town to pursue his dreams, both Claire and Chris didn’t realize it would be the biggest mistake of their lives.

After a devastating year apart and thousands of miles of distance between them, Claire met sexy surfer Adam Parker. With his awful jokes and profound patience, he helped Claire pick up the shattered pieces of her broken heart for the second time.

But now Chris has returned and he is willing and determined to make Claire’s dreams come true—the same way she did for him when she let him go.

With Adam’s former girlfriend in the picture, Claire finds herself torn between the new, passionate love she shares with Adam and the love and family she shares with Chris.

My Opinion

Once again, as soon as I finished reading Piece of You, immediately, I started reading Bring Me Home. The cliffhanger from Pieces of You would have been unbearable had I not had Bring Me Home to start straight away and I was eager to find out how the author was going to end what had been a great series so far. 

In some ways, Bring Me Home lived up to my expectations and in others it did not. This was definitely the book I didn't like the most out of the series but don't take that the wrong way, I still loved it, even if I had a few problems.

I'm struggling to find new things to say about this book that I haven't written in my last two reviews. Bring Me Home had all of the qualities I like and even more trouble and problems added to the narrative. It was just as engaging and like with the other books I couldn't put it down. I really don't want to say too much about the story as I don't want to ruin the first two books for you but I will say that everything is rounded off nicely. Even if I dislike Claire's choice, there is a sense of finality, a happily ever after and all the loose ends are tied up well. The series ended on a good note that resolves all the drama and I was glad about that.

There were quite a few sweet moments in this book that made my heart melt and this both annoyed me and made me fall in love with the story. It annoyed me because I wanted to hate Chris but after everything he does I just could help but fall in love with him too and find myself disliking Adam. It is very rare that my loyalties to a guy in a book change so it was a surprise and I think a big achievement that the author can draw those kind of emotions out of a reader.

Bring Me Home was the longest of the three books and definitely has the most crammed in, with regards to the plot. There were a total of five points of view in this book - a few too many I think -  as Lindsey and Jackie were added in a couple of times. However, I was thankful that the author didn't develop their story too much as that would have been too confusing. I didn't feel it was necessary to get their points of view because they weren't that vital. Beside that the only other complaint I have is that at one point everyone seems to be having babies! I was reading and kept thinking, 'really again!' This is only a minor quibble though as the narrative is good enough that you can put it to the back of your mind.

Overall, Bring Me Home was a great conclusion to the series. It rounds everything off nicely and although I would have preferred a different ending to the one I got, it still worked. I really need to buy these books in paperback now!


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