Tuesday, August 04, 2020

Court of Lions by Somaiya Daud ~ Review

Title: Court of Lions
Author: Somaiya Daud
Genre: Fantasy Young Adult
Publisher: Flatiron Books
Release Date: August 4th, 2020
Number of Pages: 336
Version Read: Kindle ebook
Buy: Amazon

Synopsis: Two identical girls, one a princess, the other a rebel. Who will rule the empire?

After being swept up into the brutal Vathek court, Amani, the ordinary girl forced to serve as the half-Vathek princess's body double, has been forced into complete isolation. The cruel but complex princess, Maram, with whom Amani had cultivated a tenuous friendship, discovered Amani's connection to the rebellion and has forced her into silence, and if Amani crosses Maram once more, her identity - and her betrayal - will be revealed to everyone in the court.

Amani is desperate to continue helping the rebellion, to fight for her people's freedom. But she must make a devastating decision: will she step aside, and watch her people suffer, or continue to aid them, and put herself and her family in mortal danger? And whatever she chooses, can she bear to remain separated, forever, from Maram's fiancé, Idris?

My Review: I have been highly anticipating this book since I read Mirage, the first book back in 2018. Maram was still a bitch at the beginning of the book especially since she makes Amani act as her proxy to her marriage to Idris, the prince that Amani is in love with. Amani ends up pretending to be Maram for the first two months or so of Maram and Idris' marriage all the while fighting her feelings while Maram is fighting her feelings for her female royal falconer on her mother's estate. All this fighting of feelings is happening while both Maram and Amani are trying to place Maram on the throne sooner rather than later. Maram is very angry that she was forced into marriage with a man.

A good portion of this book built up to Mathis being taken off the throne and ultimately his death is how it is decided that he will be removed. The thing is though that when we get to his death it really doesn't take that long to accomplish. Also, Nadine is killed by a shoot through the head on Maram's orders and I couldn't be happier for her death. I love how everybody got to be happy at the end and I didn't see that twist with Amani's mother coming at the end.

I want to talk about the cover for a minute. The covers for this duology are gorgeous especially the new one for Mirage. It matches the cover for Court of Lions so well.

So I really recommend adding this duology to your TBR list if you love intrigue, adventure, and forbidden romance.

Rating: 4 stars

*I received an advanced copy from NetGalley. All opinions are my own. 

Friday, July 31, 2020

Madness In Meryton by Jayne Bamber ~ Review

Title: Madness in Meryton
Author: Jayne Bamber
Genre: Pride & Prejudice variation
Publisher: self-published
Release Date: July 24th, 2020
Number of Pages: 373
Version Read: Kindle ebook
Buy: Amazon

Synopsis: When Jane and Elizabeth Bennet return home from Netherfield, two days of heavy rain confine them indoors with their unruly younger sisters, a mother in perpetual need of smelling salts, and the tedious Mr. Collins. When the rain clears, the ladies from Longbourn and the gentlemen from Netherfield are drawn to Meryton by the excitement of Market Day, setting in motion a series of significant events.

That night, Mrs. Phillips hosts a card party for officers of the local militia, where the charming Mr. Wickham tells Elizabeth his shocking history with Mr. Darcy, a man who has only given Elizabeth offense since coming to stay with his friend Mr. Bingley at Netherfield.

The next day, the same thing happens again.

And again, the day after that – and so on, for what begins to feel like an eternity. Elizabeth takes increasingly drastic measures to further the budding romance between her beloved sister Jane and their handsome neighbor Mr. Bingley. Along the way, she arranges improvements in the lives of all of her family, in an effort to end the relentless redundancy that only she seems aware of.

As Elizabeth’s frustration turns to madness, she soon realizes that her inexplicable dilemma is somehow connected to a certain officer and a certain gentleman of her acquaintance….

Elizabeth must forge unlikely alliances and devote her considerable wit to the task of achieving a perfect day for those she holds dear while facing familiar Fitzwilliam friends and foes, as well as all the mortification and delight of falling in love.

My Review: This book starts out with Elizabeth and Darcy both reliving the same day over and over but they don't find out that they are both experiencing it until Lizzy lets it slip during the card party. Eventually, they are joined by both Colonel Fitzwilliam and Caroline in their plight and we find out that Wickham is not really a bad guy in its story. I really did enjoy that twist ending with Mrs. Bennet and Baba Romilda at the end of the book. It was great.

I recommend reading this book if you are both a fan of Pride and Prejudice and the movie Groundhog Day.

Rating: 4 stars

Monday, July 27, 2020

Fable by Adrienne Young ~ Review

Title: Fable
Author: Adrienne Young
Genre: YA Fantasy
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Release Date: September 1st, 2020
Number of Pages: 368
Version Read: Kindle ebook
Buy: Amazon

Synopsis: As the daughter of the most powerful trader in the Narrows, the sea is the only home seventeen-year-old Fable has ever known. It’s been four years since the night she watched her mother drown during an unforgiving storm. The next day her father abandoned her on a legendary island filled with thieves and little food. To survive she must keep to herself, learn to trust no one, and rely on the unique skills her mother taught her. The only thing that keeps her going is the goal of getting off the island, finding her father and demanding her rightful place beside him and his crew. To do so Fable enlists the help of a young trader named West to get her off the island and across the Narrows to her father.

But her father’s rivalries and the dangers of his trading enterprise have only multiplied since she last saw him and Fable soon finds that West isn't who he seems. Together, they will have to survive more than the treacherous storms that haunt the Narrows if they're going to stay alive.

Review: As a general rule I really don't read a lot of books based around the sea but I kept hearing about this book so I decided to take a gamble on it and I'm glad I did. I didn't expect to enjoy this book as much as I did. It was a very fast read and I loved all the characters except for the jerks who lived on Jeval, they can all rot in hell. Zola can rot in hell too. This book ends on a cliffhanger that makes me want to get my hands on Namesake when it's released next year unless the NetGalley gods are kind and approve me to read the next one sooner. Lol, I'm just joking. Or am I? 😉 Regardless this is a great book and I highly recommend reading it.

Rating: 4 stars

* I received an advanced copy from NetGalley. All opinions are my own. 

Saturday, July 25, 2020

Kellynch: Dragon Persuasion by Maria Grace ~ Review

Title: Kellynch: Dragon Persuasion
Author: Maria Grace
Genre: Persuasion variation
Publisher: White Soup Press
Release Date: July 9th, 2020
Number of Pages: 351
Version Read: kindle ebook
Buy: Amazon

Synopsis: Keeping a hibernating dragon should have been a simple thing.

Should have been, but it was not. Apparently, nothing involving dragons was ever simple, at least not for Anne Elliot, junior Keeper to dragon Kellynch.

With the estate in debt, Anne’s father in denial, and the dragon’s treasure missing, Kellynch’s awakening is shaping up to be nothing short of a catastrophe. Not to mention, there was the pesky matter of her own broken heart and resentment against the old friend who had caused it.

Captain Frederick Wentworth had spent his life making something of himself in the Navy. With the war that kept him employed at an end and a small fortune in prize money, he found himself beached and at loose ends. What was he to do with himself now—take a wife like Laconia, his dragon Friend, insisted? Not when none compared to the woman who had broken his heart.

Working as an agent of the Blue Order, managing dragon matters across England, seemed a much better alternative. At least until investigating one such matter sent him directly in the path of Anne Elliot, the woman who had ruined him for all others.

Now a royal dragon rages, a sleeping dragon lurks, and too many treasures have gone missing. Can Anne and Wentworth lay aside resentment, pride, and heartbreak to prevent Kellynch’s awakening from ending in bloodshed—or worse?

Jane Austen meets Pern in a fantastical regency romp bound to delight readers of Jane Austen and Anne McCaffrey alike.

My Review: I loved this book. The character building was great. Wentworth never pursued Louisa and Laconia was pushing Wentworth to marry Anne. I really enjoyed how everybody who deserved it got their comeuppance. Even Lady Russell who got severely downgraded and sorely punished at the end. I especially loved the ending as Anne and Wentworth's problems are resolved in satisfying ways.

The Dragons of Kellynch and Kellynch: Dragon Persuasion are the Persuasion arc of Jane Austen's Dragons with the first four books centering around Pride and Prejudice. This book does have an ending which could be a stopping point for the series, however, I would love to see it continue. I have to say that I really enjoyed this sequel to The Dragons of Kellynch and I hope to read more books in this series in the future.

Rating: 4½ stars

* I received an advanced copy of the book from the author. All opinions are my own. 

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Broken Wish by Julie C. Dao

Title: Broken Wish
Author: Julie C. Dao
Genre: YA Fantasy
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Release Date: October 6th, 2020
Number of Pages: 320
Version Read: Kindle ebook
Buy: Amazon

Synopsis: 1865
Hanau, Germany

Sixteen-year-old Elva has a secret. She has visions and strange powers that she will do anything to hide. She knows the warnings about what happens to witches in their small village of Hanau. She’s heard the terrible things people say about the Witch of the North Woods, and the malicious hunts that follow. But when Elva accidentally witnesses a devastating vision of the future, she decides she has to do everything she can to prevent it. Tapping into her powers for the first time, Elva discovers a magical mirror and its owner—none other than the Witch of the North Woods herself. As Elva learns more about her burgeoning magic, and the lines between hero and villain start to blur, she must find a way to right past wrongs before it’s too late.

My Review: I loved this story so much I devoured it in less than twelve hours. There are so many different individual character stories but they all intertwine and it's so satisfying. I loved almost all the characters and I even like Wilhelm until he proved himself to be a greedy asshole towards the end of the book. I loved Elva and I really hope somebody figures out how to get her out of the predicament she's in. Also, she ended up causing the storm she was trying to prevent throughout a good chunk of the book. 

This book is the first in a series by four different authors that tell the story of four generations of a cursed family. This one is about how a broken promise between two friends curses a family and sets the foundation for the rest of the stories to come. I'm thrilled to read the rest of the books in the series when they are released.

Rating: 4 stars

* I received an advanced copy from NetGalley. All opinions are my own.