Saturday, February 17, 2018

Discovery by Brina Courtney


Synopsis:
Discoveries can be dangerous. Discoveries can be deadly. 

Nine months ago, Teagan Matthews' boyfriend disappeared and took her sense of stability with him. But when the opportunity to live with her aging grandmother in Salem arises, she decides it's time to get on with her life. A new home, new job, and new friends are adding up to a beautiful summer...

...until a young girl's body shows up one night in town, wearing a pentagram necklace exactly like Teagan's.

Now a guy looking remarkably like her missing boyfriend has arrived in Salem along with a mysterious stranger who may have some answers that Teagan has desperately been searching for. Teagan must now decide who to trust. It's a matter of life... and her death.
(Synopsis from Goodreads).


My Thoughts:
Earlier in the month, I read Lovespell by Brina Courtney, and fell in love with it. It's one of my favorite books I've read this year. Out of the 38 books I've read so far, it's definitely in my top five. I was disappointed that I couldn't find the rest of the series on Amazon. However, I was looking through my Goodreads and realized that I had more of Brina Courtney's books on my tbr, so I decided to check out Discovery. After I read the synopsis, I realized it was an expanded version of Lovespell, and I was so excited to be able to continue the story. I really enjoyed Discovery.

I do have to admit, the first part of the book was word for word from Lovespell, so I skimmed the first twenty percent or so, just to make sure there weren't any changes. I had just read Lovespell two days before, and the storyline was still fresh in my mind. I loved Discovery. I loved learning more about these characters, and watching them interact together. I especially enjoyed the friendship between Teagan and Lark. Watching them grow into close friends, especially when Teagen finds it so hard to trust people, was almost magical to watch. 

The one character I didn't like was Celine. I just found Celine's point of view very boring, and hard to get through. I thought the few chapters from her point of view were unnecessary. I mean, yes, she did give the reader some valuable information that was needed, but that info could have easily been given by Seth when he was explaining everything to Teagen. Speaking of that, I also found Seth and Teagen's grandmother's explanations confusing. For the most part, I understood most of the powers. It was the explanation of the coven history and the book that I didn't get. It was a major plot reveal and has spoilers, so I don't want to get into it into much detail. I just wished it was explained in a more understandable way.

I really enjoyed Discovery. The ending broke my heart. I was a sobbing mess. The book ended in a way that there could be a sequel, but it's not necessary. I really want one though because I want to know what happens after everything that went down in the end. I want to know where Celine went, and how Teagen is going to handle her life, and all of the changes that happened. I don't see that Discovery is available on Amazon anymore, so I doubt that the author will write a sequel. However, if she does, I will definitely be one-clicking it as soon as it is released.


I give Discovery: 4/5.

Want to know more about the author?
Twitter: https://twitter.com/brinacourtney
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5295520.Brina_Courtney

I received this book from the publisher, via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review. I was in no way compensated for this review.

Friday, February 16, 2018

ARC Review: You May Now Kill the Bride by R.L. Stine


Synopsis:
Two sisters, divided by time. Each with a terrible resentment she can barely contain.

Two Fear family weddings, decades apart... Each bride will find that the ancient curse that haunts the Fears LIVES ON. It feeds off the evil that courses through their blood. It takes its toll in unexpected ways, and allows dark history to repeat itself.

In this all-new Fear Street story, family ties bind sisters together—till DEATH do they part.

(Synopsis from Goodreads). 

My Thoughts:
When I was a kid, R.L. Stine was one of my favorite authors. Like most kids, I got addicted to his Goosebumps series at an early age. When I was in third grade, I picked up his Fear Street: Cheerleaders series and devoured them. He is one of the reasons why the horror genre is one of my favorite genres to this day. Therefore, when I saw that he was coming out with a new Fear Street series, I was so excited to read it. I just recently finished the first book, You May Now Kill the Bride, and thought it was an enjoyable read. 

For the first couple chapters of You May Now Kill the Bride, I was a little confused. There was some old school slang that I didn't recognize, and I had no idea why the characters were talking like that. Well it turns out that the first part of the book is set in the 1920s, but the reader doesn't learn that until about halfway through the first part. Once I learned that, the book became less confusing, and I really started to enjoy it.

There were times where I couldn't put the book down. I typically read at night before I go to sleep, and there were many lost hours of sleep while I was reading this because I wanted to know what was going to happen next. It kept me on the edge of my seat, wondering where Marissa had gone, and what was happening at the lodge. Granted, the book did have the usual R.L. Stine cheesiness and predictability, but it didn't take away my enjoyment of the book. If anything, it just made me love the book more because it brought back those feelings of nostalgia. 

I am so excited that R.L. Stine chose to reboot his Fear Street series. I loved the first book in the new series, You May Now Kill the Bride. Even though it was confusing at first, I quickly found myself being swept up into the storyline. I loved learning the history and lore of the Fear family. I hope R.L. Stine continues that in the rest of the series. I find it fascinating. Due to some adult themes in this book that I don't remember the original series having, I do recommend it to older teen readers.


I give You May Now Kill the Bride: 4/5.

Want to know more about the author?
Website: http://rlstine.com/index.php
facebook: https://www.facebook.com/rlstine/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/RL_Stine
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/13730.R_L_Stine

I received this eARC from the publisher, via Edelweiss, in exchange for an honest review. I was in no way compensated for this review.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Cranwood by J. Bryer


Synopsis:
Abby just wants to be a normal teenager, but she has been hiding a secret that has been locked inside of her since she was a child. Will David be the one to make Abby feel like she fits in. Is Abby's secret going to be revealed?

The gift Abby always thought was a burden can now be used for the unfortunate ones that may not live without her help.


Following an unexplained murder in the quiet town of Cranwood, sixteen year old Abby Grace Hill is driven into a dark and dangerous territory.She may not make it out alive.
(Synopsis from Goodreads). 

My Thoughts:
From the moment I saw Cranwood, I knew I had to read it. I'm such a sucker for a gorgeous book cover. The cover was absolutely breathtaking. It might be one of my favorite book covers I have ever seen. Unfortunately, that was the only thing I liked about Cranwood. I didn't care for the book at all.

The first chapter or two of Cranwood was actually really intriguing. However, after Abby deals with what happens at the school, everything went downhill. After that, it was almost like someone else started writing the rest of the book. The sentences were short and choppy, which made it hard to read. It was so boring. There were a lot of plot inconsistencies. For example, David said he didn't have a phone because he had just moved. Later in the book, Abby was furious because David hadn't called her. Also, as soon as the box happened, the police should have been called to deal with it and they weren't. There were several times where someone should have taken David or Abby to the hospital, and they just shrugged it off and went home. Abby was also a bad liar, and David just accepted everything she said as truth, and didn't get suspicious. A tiny child could have seen through her lies. It was so frustrating, and really made the story unbelievable.

I think the only reason why I finished Cranwood is that I was hoping it would go back to being really good, like it was in the beginning few chapters. Sadly, it did not. Luckily it was short, so I didn't waste much time reading it. The author specifies that the book is for teens, and not adults. I think the reason why they say that is because teens are less likely to see through plot holes, and bad writing. I know when I was a teen, I probably wouldn't have realized how bad the book was. Unfortunately, I don't recommend this book to anyone.

I give Cranwood: 2/5.

Want to know more about the author?
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5143051.J_Bryer

I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. I was in no way compensated for this review.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Lovespell by Brina Courtney


Synopsis:
Nine months ago, Teagan Matthews' boyfriend disappeared and took her sense of stability with him. But when the opportunity to live with her aging grandmother in Salem arises, she decides it's time to get on with her life. A new home, new job, and new friends are adding up to a beautiful summer... 

...until a young girl's body shows up one night in town, wearing a pentagram necklace exactly like Teagan's. 

(Synopsis from Goodreads).

My Thoughts:
Recently, I've been in the mood to read more paranormal books. I used to love the genre when I was younger, but unfortunately I haven't read many in the past few years. With all of the amazing books coming out on a daily basis, it can be easy to overlook a specific genre, which is what I had been unintentionally doing. I've had Lovespell by Brina Courtney on my tbr for a long time, and recently decided to try it. I'm kicking myself for not reading it sooner. I loved it so much. 

I will admit, Lovespell did have a slow start. for the first chapter or so, I was really bored. Then, as soon as Teagen goes to her grandmother's home, I was hooked. I loved everything about the book. I fell in love with the characters. Each had unique personalities. I wanted to learn more about every one of them. I even liked Seth, which is weird because I typically don't care for characters that share my husband's name. It makes the book awkward to read because I picture him in my mind. This time, I liked it though. Even though the book it had a lot of world building, it didn't drag like most first books in a series. It kept me captivated the whole way through. I flew through the book because I couldn't stop reading. I needed to know what was going to happen next.

Lovespell is definitely one of my favorite books I've read this year. Other than the slow start, I loved everything about it. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to find this book on Amazon, which is a shame. I want to read the rest of the series, and I can't find it. I need to know what happens next after that crazy cliffhanger ending. If I do find it, or the author re-releases the books, I will be binge reading the rest of the series. I can't wait to read more of Brina Courtney's books. I love her writing.


I give Lovespell: 4/5.

Want to know more about the author?
Twitter: https://twitter.com/brinacourtney
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5295520.Brina_Courtney

I received this book from the publisher, via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I was in no way compensated for this review.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

DNF Review: Bound to Submit by Natasha Moore


Synopsis:
Mason’s dark good looks and dominating personality stirred up Kelly’s forbidden fantasies, frightening her so much that she broke up with him. When she agrees to help out at the community haunted house, she never expects to be tied to a bed, playing damsel in distress to Mason’s masked, whip-wielding villain.

Mason knows Kelly is fighting her sexual needs and he hopes that a few hours of playing out her fantasies with him will prove it to her. Bound and under his control, she can’t run away from him this time.

(Synopsis from Goodreads). 

My Thoughts:
Every once in a great while, I like reading shorter books. Not only does it help me to reach my Goodreads goal, but it's also a perfect solution for when I finish a book and don't want to jump into another one right away. I was scrolling through my Kindle the other day, wanting something short to read, and saw Bound to Submit. I had been wanting to get back into reading erotica again, so I thought it sounded like the perfect book to read. Unfortunately, I hated it. I ended up dnf'ing it at fifty-seven percent.

I felt bad for dnf'ing such a short book, but I just couldn't take it anymore. The plot was boring. There was absolutely nothing happening. I didn't think a fiction book about learning BDSM in public could be boring, but the author proved me wrong. I found myself skimming through just to get to the sex scenes, which I had hoped would improve the book. I was wrong. You would think that it would have very descriptive, exciting, sex scenes being an erotica short story. However, it didn't. I think I've read more descriptive, detailed sex scenes in young adult and new adult books. Finally, I just couldn't force myself to read any more of the story. 

Bound to Submit was such a huge disappointment. It got to the point where I couldn't even finish it, which I hate doing with smaller books. Nothing exciting happened in the book. I don't think I will be picking up any of the author's other books either, which is unfortunate because she's written a lot of them. I just didn't like the boring, bland writing style at all.


I give Bound to Submit: 1/5.

Want to know more about the author?
Website: http://www.natashamoore.com/index.html
Twitter: https://twitter.com/natashamoore
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1093811.Natasha_Moore

I received this book from the publisher, via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review. I was in no way compensated for this review. 

Friday, February 9, 2018

The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap by Paulette Mahurin


Synopsis:
The year 1895 was filled with memorable historical events: the Dreyfus Affair divided France; Booker T. Washington gave his Atlanta address; Richard Olney, United States Secretary of State, expanded the effects of the Monroe Doctrine in settling a boundary dispute between the United Kingdom and Venezuela; and Oscar Wilde was tried and convicted for gross indecency under Britain’s recently passed law that made sex between males a criminal offense. When news of Wilde’s conviction went out over telegraphs worldwide, it threw a small Nevada town into chaos. This is the story of what happened when the lives of its citizens were impacted by the news of Oscar Wilde’s imprisonment. It is a chronicle of hatred and prejudice with all its unintended and devastating consequences, and how love and friendship bring strength and healing.
(Synopsis from Goodreads).

My Thoughts:
I love reading LGBTQ+ books. As an openly bisexual woman, I love learning everything I can about the subject. I also love reading stories that make me feel accepted, like it's okay to be who I am. I recently was browsing through the books I own that I still need to review, and saw The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap. I really wanted to read it because I don't know much about the LGBTQ+ community in the late 1800s. It was a good book, even though I didn't enjoy all aspects of it.

For the most part, I really did enjoy reading The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap. I loved learning about some LGBTQ+ history. for as much as I read, I had no idea that the whole thing with Oscar Wilde happened. It made me want to look into it more, and research it. I'm hoping I can find some more books that will tell me about it. The 1800s are rarely talked about in the LGBTQ+ history books I read. It was interesting to get that perspective in history. I was very pleasantly surprised at how much I genuinely cared about these characters. In the end of the book, something tragic happens, and I found myself in tears over it. I empathized with the character so much, it was like I felt her pain. Even Josie, who was a horrible, reprehensible, racist, homophobic jerk made me feel a little sympathy for her.

Even though I really enjoyed the book, I did have a couple of problems with it. There is a somewhat incestuous relationship in the book that really grossed me out at first. Two of the characters are cousins in a relationship together, and that took quite a long time for me to get over to be able to enjoy the book. Even now, still thinking about it slightly grosses me out. I know it was a more common thing back then, but I just can't deal with it. Another thing is that I wish the author would have done a bit more research to make the book historically accurate. For example, one of the characters uses the phrase "Whatever", which wasn't used until the 1960s. Also, while treadmills were around at the time this took place, they weren't used for exercise until 1913 when a patent was filed. Little things like that kept taking me out of the story, which is a shame because it was such a good book otherwise.

I really enjoyed The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap. It was a great LGBTQ+ book that taught me so much about the history of the LGBTQ+ community. Granted, I did have a few problems with it. However, I don't regret reading the book at all. The storyline kept me interested throughout, and I loved the characters. I would probably recommend the book to someone who wanted to learn more about the LGBTQ+ community in the late 1800s without reading a textbook-like version.


I give The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap: 3.5/5.

Want to know more about the author?
facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Paulette-Mahurins-Books-695108163960200/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/mahurinpaulette?lang=en
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5895757.Paulette_Mahurin

I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. I was in no way compensated for this review.

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Time Between Us by Tamara Ireland Stone


Synopsis:
Anna and Bennett were never supposed to meet: she lives in 1995 Chicago and he lives in 2012 San Francisco. But Bennett has the unique ability to travel through time and space, which brings him into Anna’s life, and with him a new world of adventure and possibility.

As their relationship deepens, the two face the reality that time may knock Bennett back to where he belongs, even as a devastating crisis throws everything they believe into question. Against a ticking clock, Anna and Bennett are forced to ask themselves how far they can push the bounds of fate, what consequences they can bear in order to stay together, and whether their love can stand the test of time.

Fresh, exciting, and deeply romantic, Time Between Us is a stunning, spellbinding debut from an extraordinary new voice in YA fiction.

(Synopsis from Goodreads). 

My Thoughts:
Recently I've gotten into reading stories about time travel. I don't know if it's from my obsessive Doctor Who watching or what, but it's all I've wanted to read about lately. Time Between Us has been on my tbr for a while, so I decided to give it a try. I went in with no expectations because I hadn't heard much about it, and ended up enjoying it, even though it was a little cliche.

At first, Time Between Us made me really confused, which I typically hate. However, it worked well in this book. I liked finding out things alongside Anna, instead of just being told what was happening right away. It added to the mystery and suspense of the book, and kept me interested. There was a lot of mystery and intrigue throughout the book. When it was finally revealed when Bennett was born, my jaw dropped. It added a whole new layer to the story, which made things even more complex. I loved it.

There are a few problems that I had with the book. It was very tropey, and cliche. It reminded me a lot of Twilight in a way, which might be good for it's intended young adult audience, but I've been over the whole Twilight thing for a few years now. I've outgrown it. For example, a lot of the important scenes take place in a school cafeteria, like Twilight. There's also an unexplainable connection to each other, and instalove that's similar to Twilight. Last but not least, he shows up uninvited her bedroom, which reminded me of Twilight, and is always creepy. The plot was also predictable at times. I guessed what was going to happen with the contest, and a few other things that I don't want to get too into because of spoilers, from the start. 

Even though I had a couple of issues with Time Between Us, I ended up really enjoying it. It made me want to read more of Tamara Ireland Stone's books, which I will be doing right away. I think it should be interesting to read the sequel to this, Time After Time. I'm not sure how a sequel will take place after the way everything ended, but I'm excited to read it because I really want more of these characters. I recommend this book for young adult readers, those that like Twilight and want similar books, and people that love reading about time travel.


I give Time Between Us: 3.5/5.

Want to know more about the author?
Website: https://www.tamarairelandstone.com/
facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tamarairelandstone/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/tamaraistone
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/tamaraistone/
Pintrest: https://www.pinterest.com/tamaraistone/
Tumblr: http://tamaraistone.tumblr.com/
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/tamaraistone
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/user/1254719090
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4792225.Tamara_Ireland_Stone

I received this book from the publisher, via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review. I was in no way compensated for this review.