Showing posts with label 4 Stars. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 4 Stars. Show all posts

Friday, April 19, 2024

#BookReview: Courting War (Vicious Gods, #1) by Hazel St. Lewis






Synopsis: The number one rule in life: never make a deal with Death … even if Death is your sister.

Theodra, Goddess of War, knows not to break this rule. But like all arrogant gods, she does just that. Unable to hold back, she destroys a ship full of traffickers, unaware there are girls on board. When one of them dies, Theo trades with Death for a soul she will someday love. A soul for a soul. A good deal, in her esteemed opinion, since she is incapable of falling in love.

Unfortunately, Theo might have been mistaken.

Thirteen years later, as a punishment for killing too many wicked men, she is sentenced to play as a mortal in a deadly tournament called the Sacrifice. The games are played in pairs, and her partner is the sinfully handsome Prince Kellyn. Even though they despise one another and can barely work together, sexual tension burns between them. But if their hatred turns to love, it will cost Kellyn his life, for Death is always waiting to collect.

Courting War is a new adult romantasy novel and is a standalone book within a larger series. Featured tropes include: enemies-to-lovers, forced proximity, forbidden love, and immortals. It is perfect for fans of Sarah J. Maas, Carissa Broadbent, and Rebecca Yarros.


#BookReview: Ice Planet Barbarians (Ice Planet Barbarians #1) by Ruby Dixon @lexilikestoread @BerkleyRomance






Synopsis: You'd think being abducted by aliens would be the worst thing that could happen to me. And you'd be wrong. Because now, the aliens are having ship trouble, and they've left their cargo of human women - including me - on an ice planet.

And the only native inhabitant I've met? He's big, horned, blue, and really, really has a thing for me...


#BookReview: The Downloaded by Robert J. Sawyer @lexilikestoread






Synopsis: The new novel by Canada's top Science Fiction writer In 2059 two very different groups have their minds uploaded into a quantum computer in Waterloo, Ontario. One group consists of astronauts preparing for Earth's first interstellar voyage. The other? Convicted murderers, serving their sentences in a virtual-reality prison. But when disaster strikes, the astronauts and the prisoners must download back into physical reality and find a way to work together to save Earth from destruction. The Downloaded debuted in a six-month exclusive window as an Audible Original narrated by Academy Award-winner Brendan Fraser promoted by national TV and radio ad campaigns. This print edition is coming out immediately after Audible's exclusivity ends and is being supported by a six-city cross-Canada author book tour.


Thursday, April 18, 2024

#BookReview: Wild Magic (Magic for Hire #1) by Alexandra Ivy @AlexandraIvy






Synopsis: When old-world demons, modern-day mages, and irresistible attraction collide, desire becomes the most powerful and dangerous weapon of all, in this spellbinding new series from New York Times bestselling author Alexandra Ivy . . .

There was a time when demons reigned. That was before they were forced to retreat to the shadows. Today, in hidden corners across the globe their evil blood still pools, and the authority of their new rulers—the Vampire Cabal—must never be challenged. Leave it to a Jersey girl to change ancient
history . . .

At sixteen, when Peri Sanguis’s wild magic first appeared, she was forced to flee her Wyoming ranch—and her suddenly murderous family—to save her own life. On the East Coast, tutored by mages who run the Witch’s Brew bookstore-cafe, Peri’s world seems magically tranquil—until her estranged mother and a coven of witches are slaughtered. Now, to solve the violent mysteries of her past, she must put her trust, body and soul, in a sensual immortal who is every woman’s darkest fantasy . . .

The golden-eyed vampire, Valen, has never wanted more than to claim an untamed female like Peri. Lured into each other’s orbit, and working together against a resurrected evil brings them intimately closer—to danger, blood betrayals, all-consuming passion, and to sacrifices that must be made to save themselves and the world . . .


#BookReview: Things I Want Back From You by Elizabeth Stix






Synopsis: Elizabeth Stix's debut story collection

Set in the fictional California town of San Encanto--a place where suburban angst coexists with the astonishing--a lonely wife finds her oppressive husband has become a dirigible who follows her from the sky, a neglected boy spends his summer unwinding a parasitic Guinea worm from his little sister's belly, and an aspiring life coach attends a self-actualization seminar that goes wildly off the rails. In THINGS I WANT BACK FROM YOU, Elizabeth Stix's hilarious and poignant debut of 20 linked stories, hopelessly flawed characters flail against their own insecurities, seeking one true moment of connection, and if they're lucky, winning that rarest of gifts--a second chance.

"Funny and poignant, this collection will resonate with any reader who has felt trapped by something inexplicable, what Stix calls 'the fishbowl of our circumstance.' She takes on love, alienation, betrayal, and recriminations with wit and wisdom, and a generosity of spirit. Her tight cast of characters is frequently smothered by longing, doubt, and sometimes each other in a California landscape that shimmers with possibilities just out of reach. Elizabeth Stix is a true bard of modern life."--Elizabeth Gonzalez James, author of The Bullet Swallower and Mona at Sea

"Elizabeth Stix's THINGS I WANT BACK FROM YOU is charming and inventive. By turns hilarious and heartbreaking, the interlinked collection of stories--set in and around the Bay Area suburb of San Encanto--features achingly alive characters who yearn for connection. An enchanting debut."--Vanessa Hua, author of Forbidden City

"With sharpness and ease, Elizabeth Stix shows us how the short story, above all literary forms, can deliver an explosion of meaning and feeling. Neighbors, co-workers, families and friends mess up and carry on in stories of poignancy and humor that disturb and delight. An affirmation of the absurdity of life and the steadying power of love."--Kathryn Ma, author of The Chinese Groove



This title will release June 14, 2024.

#BookReview: Butcher & Blackbird (The Ruinous Love Trilogy, #1) by Brynne Weaver @brynne_weaver @zandoprojects






Synopsis: Every serial killer needs a friend. 
Every game must have a winner.


When a chance encounter sparks an unlikely bond between rival murderers Sloane and Rowan, the two find something elusive—the friendship of a like-minded, pitch-black soul. From small town West Virginia to upscale California, from downtown Boston to rural Texas, the two hunters collide in an annual game of blood and suffering, one that pits them against the most dangerous monsters in the country. But as their friendship develops into something more, the restless ghosts left in their wake are only a few steps behind, ready to claim more than just their newfound love. Can Rowan and Sloane dig themselves out of a game of graves? Or have they finally met their match? 

Butcher & Blackbird is the first book in the Ruinous Love Dark Romance trilogy of interconnected stand-alone dark romantic comedies. This dual POV novel ends on a HEA.


Wednesday, April 17, 2024

#BookReview: Of Blood and Aether (Harbingers, #1) by @harperhawthorne @RRBookTours1


cover

Of Blood and Aether (Harbingers #1)

Publication Date: April 17, 2024

Genre: Dark Fantasy Romance

Shadow Daddy MMC
Dual POV
Dark Prophecy/Dangerous Secrets
Tension/Angst/So Much Yearning
Slow Burn/ Scorching Spice
Addictive Banter
Arcane University
Increasingly Questionable Interpretations of the Word "Platonic"

A rare conduit of Light, drawn to the Shadows. A spymaster who can’t seem to stay away.

For as long as she can remember, Arken Asher has been searching for answers—driven by an insatiable hunger, a need to understand the meaning behind her dangerous arcane secrets. She’s finally taken that leap into the unknown, leaving her simple life behind to attend the Arcane Studium: a prestigious college of magickal arts & sciences nestled in the heart of Sophrosyne: the City of the Gods.

As the Scouting & Reconnaissance Captain of the Elder Guard, Kieran Vistarii deals in Shadows, blood and subterfuge. Scarred by his past but dedicated to safeguarding Sophrosyne’s future, Kieran’s self-imposed isolation is easily masked by charm and cocksure energy. Strange disappearances have kept his cadre busy as of late, and yet the captain finds himself sidetracked, distracted by the inexplicable allure of a certain golden-eyed Conduit and her curious mind.

They both know better than to get involved, but the Fates have other plans. The dark threads of prophecy were woven long ago, and the ties that bind just might be what it takes to mend these broken, star-crossed souls… or what forges a deadly bond that could damn them all.

Of Blood & Aether is the first book in the Harbingers series, a captivating and character-driven dark romantasy saga. Rife with sizzling tension, gut-wrenching angst, addictive banter and ever-growing stakes, the Harbingers series is perfect for fans of A Court of Thorns & Roses, Fourth Wing and From Blood & Ash.

CW: This book is intended for adults only, and contains subject matter that may be difficult or disturbing for some readers. Sensitive material includes, but is not limited to: frequent profanity, violence, torture, murder, child abduction, the tattooing of a child without consent (on-page), emotional abuse, explorations of implied mental illness (depression, anxiety) & neurodivergency (adhd, autism), socio-economic power imbalances, frequent mentions of blood, references to cults and sex work. 

Of Blood & Aether also contains explicit, open-door sexual content, as well as explorations of kink and BDSM themes that will escalate over the course of the series. 

Reader discretion is advised. 

#BookReview: The Heirloom (Secrets of Silver Grove, #1) by Bly Forsythe @lexilikestoread






Synopsis: In the quaint town of Silver Grove, Maryland, a modern witch named Iris Kane leads a quiet life, blending seamlessly into the backdrop of suburban normalcy.

But beneath her mundane façade, Iris holds a a deep connection to the supernatural world, a power that runs through her veins, and a past she's desperate to forget.

Crossing paths with charismatic stranger Adrian Grayson, leaves Iris wanting more. Handsome and alluring, his motives remain shrouded in uncertainty. Is he a friend, a foe, or something else entirely?

As the lines between right and wrong blur, Iris must decide who she can trust, and what she's willing to risk, to unearth the truth.


Tuesday, April 16, 2024

#BookReview: Kings of Sin (King of Wrath, #1) by @authoranahuang @Read_Bloom






Synopsis: She’s the wife he never wanted…and the weakness he never saw coming. 

Ruthless. Meticulous. Arrogant. 

Dante Russo thrives on control, both personally and professionally. 

The billionaire CEO never planned to marry—
until the threat of blackmail forces him into an engagement with a woman he barely knows. 

Vivian Lau, jewelry heiress and daughter of his newest enemy.

It doesn’t matter how beautiful or charming she is. He'll do everything in his power to destroy the evidence and their betrothal.  

There’s only one problem: now that he has her...he can't bring himself to let her go.

***
Elegant. Ambitious. Well-mannered.

Vivian Lau is the perfect daughter and her family’s ticket into the highest echelons of high society.

Marrying a blue-blooded Russo means opening doors that would otherwise remain closed to her new-money family.

While the rude, elusive Dante isn't her idea of a dream partner, she agrees to their arranged marriage out of duty. 

Craving his touch was never part of the plan. 

Neither was the worst thing she could possibly do: fall in love with her future husband.

King of Wrath is a steamy billionaire/arranged marriage romance. It contains explicit sexual content, profanity, and mild violence. Recommended for mature readers only.


#BookReview: Love You, Mean It by Jilly Gagnon






Synopsis: A playful romantic comedy featuring dueling delis, fake dating, a shockingly awesome ex, and just the right amount of amnesia.

Ellie Greco wishes she weren’t stuck in Milborough. For a few brief, shining years, she escaped her hometown to pursue her dream career—designing beautiful, elaborate costumes for theater—until her father's death five years ago called her home to run the family's decades-old deli. Yes, she loves the place, but she’d always thought she was meant for more exciting things than stocking the right tinned fish. But when Ellie hears that a local landlord is planning to rent to Mangia, the glitzy gourmet food department store, Greco's Deli's very existence is suddenly in jeopardy.

She tries to plead her case to Theo Taylor, scion of the property management firm about to put her out of business, but their meeting goes from bad (it’s not her fault he’s infuriating) to worse (no one expects the ceiling to literally fall in).

With Theo out cold, Ellie panics and claims to be his fiancée… and almost passes out herself when amnesia means Theo seems to actually believe her. Soon, the effects of the head injury wear off, but Theo proposes that their “engagement” stick around. If they manage to convince enough people they might both get what they an end to the Mangia deal. Ellie doesn’t trust him (after all, if Theo Taylor wants it, how can it be good for her?) but seeing no other option, reluctantly agrees.

And miraculously, the fake engagement seems to be working—even Ted, Theo’s shrewd, cold father seems convinced—that is until Sam, Theo’s ex-fiance, reappears on the scene. Not only does she see through their ruse, she proposes an arrangement of her own, forcing Ellie to decide between blossoming friendship, her family legacy, and the burgeoning romance she frankly never asked for.


Monday, April 15, 2024

#BookReview: The Honey Witch by Sydney J. Shields






Synopsis: The Honey Witch of Innisfree can never find true love. That is her curse to bear. But when a young woman who doesn’t believe in magic arrives on her island, sparks fly in this deliciously sweet debut novel of magic, hope, and love overcoming all.
 
Twenty-one-year-old Marigold Claude has always preferred the company of the spirits of the meadow to any of the suitors who’ve tried to woo her. So when her grandmother whisks her away to the family cottage on the tiny Isle of Innisfree with an offer to train her as the next Honey Witch, she accepts immediately. But her newfound magic and independence come with a No one can fall in love with the Honey Witch.
 
When Lottie Burke, a notoriously grumpy skeptic who doesn’t believe in magic, shows up on her doorstep, Marigold can’t resist the challenge to prove to her that magic is real. But soon, Marigold begins to care for Lottie in ways she never expected. And when darker magic awakens and threatens to destroy her home, she must fight for much more than her new home—at the risk of losing her magic and her heart.


Thursday, April 11, 2024

#BookReview: In This Ravishing World by @Nina_Schuyler






Synopsis: In this Ravishing World is a sweeping, impassioned short story collection, ringing out with joy, despair, and hope for the natural world. Nine connected stories unfold, bringing together an unforgettable cast of dreamers, escapists, activists, and artists, creating a kaleidoscopic view of the climate crisis. An older woman who has spent her entire life fighting for the planet sinks into despair. A young boy is determined to bring the natural world to his bleak urban reality. A scientist working to solve the plastic problem grapples with whether to have a child. A ballet dancer endeavors to inhabit the consciousness of a rat. In this Ravishing World is a full-throated chorus— with Nature joining in— marveling at the exquisite beauty of our world, and pleading, raging, and ultimately urging all of its inhabitants toward activism and resistance.

This title will be released on July 2, 2024.

Wednesday, April 10, 2024

#BookReview: The Honey Witch by Sydney J. Shields @HachetteUS






Synopsis: The Honey Witch of Innisfree can never find true love. That is her curse to bear. But when a young woman who doesn’t believe in magic arrives on her island, sparks fly in this deliciously sweet debut novel of magic, hope, and love overcoming all.
 
Twenty-one-year-old Marigold Claude has always preferred the company of the spirits of the meadow to any of the suitors who’ve tried to woo her. So when her grandmother whisks her away to the family cottage on the tiny Isle of Innisfree with an offer to train her as the next Honey Witch, she accepts immediately. But her newfound magic and independence come with a No one can fall in love with the Honey Witch.
 
When Lottie Burke, a notoriously grumpy skeptic who doesn’t believe in magic, shows up on her doorstep, Marigold can’t resist the challenge to prove to her that magic is real. But soon, Marigold begins to care for Lottie in ways she never expected. And when darker magic awakens and threatens to destroy her home, she must fight for much more than her new home—at the risk of losing her magic and her heart.

This title will be released on May 14, 2024.

Tuesday, April 09, 2024

#BookReview: Love You, Mean It by @jillygagnon @randomhouse






Synopsis: A playful romantic comedy featuring dueling delis, fake dating, a shockingly awesome ex, and just the right amount of amnesia.

Ellie Greco wishes she weren’t stuck in Milborough. For a few brief, shining years, she escaped her hometown to pursue her dream career—designing beautiful, elaborate costumes for theater—until her father's death five years ago called her home to run the family's decades-old deli. Yes, she loves the place, but she’d always thought she was meant for more exciting things than stocking the right tinned fish. But when Ellie hears that a local landlord is planning to rent to Mangia, the glitzy gourmet food department store, Greco's Deli's very existence is suddenly in jeopardy.

She tries to plead her case to Theo Taylor, scion of the property management firm about to put her out of business, but their meeting goes from bad (it’s not her fault he’s infuriating) to worse (no one expects the ceiling to literally fall in).

With Theo out cold, Ellie panics and claims to be his fiancée… and almost passes out herself when amnesia means Theo seems to actually believe her. Soon, the effects of the head injury wear off, but Theo proposes that their “engagement” stick around. If they manage to convince enough people they might both get what they an end to the Mangia deal. Ellie doesn’t trust him (after all, if Theo Taylor wants it, how can it be good for her?) but seeing no other option, reluctantly agrees.

And miraculously, the fake engagement seems to be working—even Ted, Theo’s shrewd, cold father seems convinced—that is until Sam, Theo’s ex-fiance, reappears on the scene. Not only does she see through their ruse, she proposes an arrangement of her own, forcing Ellie to decide between blossoming friendship, her family legacy, and the burgeoning romance she frankly never asked for.


#BookReview: The Cerise (Kingdom of Lies, #1) by Bailey Black






Synopsis: I had a plan. Find the soldier who killed my family and make him pay. It should have been an easy feat. I’d done it over a dozen times, taking out each member of that regiment one by one, but the mission went sideways. It all started with the man in the woods. The one my webs of magic couldn’t sense even when he stood before me. Then my partner made a mistake, and now he’s lying in one of the Crown’s dungeons fighting for his life. I couldn’t leave him to die, but I couldn’t just walk into the castle either.

Or maybe I could.

With the help of some unexpected allies, I entered the Culling—a one-in-a-lifetime chance to become queen. I have no interest in winning the prince’s heart or the crown. My only goal is to get into the castle, find my friend, and get out before someone realizes I’m a Cerise.

But when the welcome ball turns from a grand event into a nightmarish dance of death, all eyes are on me. As if that’s not bad enough, the soldier, the one who took my family, he’s here.

If you loved "The Selection" by Kiera Cass and "From Blood and Ash" by Jennifer L. Armentrout, get ready to fall in love with this enchanting fantasy romance!


Monday, April 08, 2024

#BookReview: Sweet Nightmare (The Calder Academy #1) by @TracyWolff @entangledpub






Synopsis: The scariest school on earth
Is about to experience real fear…

Most schools are about being the best. This school? It’s about being the worst. Calder Academy is where the rogue paranormals go. The ones who break the rules or lose control. And when that happens for vamps, werewolves, witches, and dark fae? It gets pretty freaking scary.

I should know. Because I’m trapped here.

Look, every seventeen-year-old girl thinks their mom is a tyrant. But mine just happens to run Calder Academy, which paints a giant target on my back. The way I make it through these dark halls is by steering clear of the things—and kids—who go bump in the night.

Especially Jude Abernathy.

But when a freak storm hits our isolated island, I'm stuck without a backup plan. The power is gone. The lights are out. And our worst nightmares are suddenly real—and out for blood.
Now the only way to survive is to align myself with one evil to avoid the other.

And the only thing worse than the idea of getting close to Jude? Secretly loving every minute of it.

The Calder Academy series is best enjoyed in order.
Reading Order:
Book #1 Sweet Nightmare
Book #2 Sweet Chaos
Book #3 Sweet Vengeance


Thursday, April 04, 2024

#BookReview: The Exception to the Rule (The Improbable Meet-Cute #1) by @ChristinaLauren @BistroBookBabes






Synopsis: On February 14, an accidental email to a stranger opens the door to an unexpected relationship in a captivating short story by the New York Times bestselling authors of The Unhoneymooners.

One typo, and a boy and girl connect by chance. Wishing each other a happy Valentine’s Day isn’t the end. In fact, it becomes a friendly annual tradition—with rules: no pics, no real names, nothing too personal. As years pass, the rules for their email “dates” are breaking, and they’re sharing more than they imagined—including the urge to ask…what if we actually met?

Christina Lauren’s The Exception to the Rule is part of The Improbable Meet-Cute, irresistibly romantic stories about finding love when and where you least expect it. They can be read or listened to in one sitting.


#BookReview: Stay With Me (Sugarland Creek, #2) by Brooke Montgomery @lexilikestoread






Synopsis: A best friend’s brother stand-alone from small-town romance author Brooke Montgomery about a girl who falls pregnant by the wrong man and the cowboy who takes her in…

I've crushed on my best friend's brother for years.

He's a six-foot-three, dark-haired cowboy who works on his family's ranch and sends butterflies to my stomach anytime he looks at me. But he's never made a move, so I need to get over it.

Except, when he reads a text message about me liking a mysterious guy, he snaps and demands answers. Little does he know, it's my code name for him.

When he finally confesses he likes me too, I find out I'm pregnant. With my ex-boyfriend's baby.

After spending three weeks together in secret, my world turns upside down when that little white stick reveals a positive sign from the one-night stand I had before him. 

Now everything's a mess and my life's spiraling out of control.

I can't expect him to date me anymore, so I insist we return to being friends. The last thing he needs is a girl who's carrying another man's baby and about to be a first-time mom.

But when my apartment gets broken into, and there's a suspected criminal on the loose, he insists I move in with him to keep me safe. 

Staying platonic proves to be harder with each passing day as he goes with me to my appointments, takes me baby shopping, and stocks the kitchen with all my weird cravings. He's so involved that everyone assumes he's the father. And I don’t correct them.

But the truth always comes out in a Southern small town.

Stay With Me is book 2 in the Sugarland Creek series. Each book in this Southern, small town series is a stand-alone and ends in a happily ever after.


Tuesday, April 02, 2024

#BookReview: The Familiar by @Lbardugo @Flatironbooks






Synopsis: From the New York Times bestselling author of Ninth House, Hell Bent, and creator of the Grishaverse series comes a highly anticipated historical fantasy set during the Spanish Golden Age 

In a shabby house, on a shabby street, in the new capital of Madrid, Luzia Cotado uses scraps of magic to get through her days of endless toil as a scullion. But when her scheming mistress discovers the lump of a servant cowering in the kitchen is actually hiding a talent for little miracles, she demands Luzia use those gifts to better the family's social position. 

What begins as simple amusement for the bored nobility takes a perilous turn when Luzia garners the notice of Antonio Pérez, the disgraced secretary to Spain's king. Still reeling from the defeat of his armada, the king is desperate for any advantage in the war against England's heretic queen—and Pérez will stop at nothing to regain the king's favor. 

Determined to seize this one chance to better her fortunes, Luzia plunges into a world of seers and alchemists, holy men and hucksters, where the line between magic, science, and fraud is never certain. But as her notoriety grows, so does the danger that her Jewish blood will doom her to the Inquisition's wrath. She will have to use every bit of her wit and will to survive—even if that means enlisting the help of Guillén Santangel, an embittered immortal familiar whose own secrets could prove deadly for them both.

This title will be released on April 9, 2024.