Friday, August 30, 2013

ARC Review: The Thousand Year Curse by Taylor Lavati

Thank you to Taylor for giving me a review copy of her novel in exchange for my fair and honest review.

The Thousand Year Curse by Taylor Lavati (ARC)
Dani's rating: 4 stars

Format: e-book
Pages: 334
Publisher: CreateSpace (self-published)
Publication Date: August 12, 2013

Goodreads synopsis:
Being a teenager isn't all fun and games for seventeen year old Ryder. After being thrown down the social hierarchy, Ryder Mason has one goal for her senior year-survive. 

Within the first month of school, Ryder goes from bullied teen to a cursed half goddess with two boyfriends. As if that wasn't enough, she travels into the Underworld to confront Hades about the curse and her missing mother. 

Ryder delves head first into a Godly world as her knights fight to seek her approval, her best friend's loyalties are tested and people's true intentions are shown in the first Curse Books novel.

Dani's Review:
Before I say anything about my opinion of this novel, I would like to make a few points. 1) This is a SELF-PUBLISHED novel. 2) This is a DEBUT novel. 3) The author is very, very young to be publishing a book. 4) She wrote this novel for the NaNoWriMo writing contest! For those of you who don't know what it is, it is a challenge to write a full-length 50,000 novel in only 30 days during the month of November. 5) I am basing my review off of an ARC copy. The final copy is most likely better than the copy I read.

Let's all give a round of applause to Taylor for her achievements! :)

I enjoyed The Thousand Year Curse, but some parts of it disappointed me. The plot structure, character development, and Greek mythology concepts were great, but it didn't have that special sparkle. The cake was there, but it didn't have much icing or decoration. The imagery was almost nonexistent and some sentences didn't quite flow. I felt like some chapters were well put together while others were jumbled and crammed together as if the author was writing it in a hurry. Oh wait, Taylor somewhat was in a hurry. The very first copy of this 334 page novel was written in 30 days.

The Thousand Year Curse needs a good, thorough edit. It has the potential to be amazing, but it needs some help in terms of the flow of the writing. Some scenes captured my attention and had me tearing through the pages, but others were "bleh" and I skimmed it.

This novel's greatest quality? The plot.
Ryder is a teenage girl in her senior year who was besties with the most popular girl of her grade until a misunderstanding occurred a few years ago. Now? For lack of a better term, she is a nobody. She doesn't have any friends except a boy named Junior. And even worse, she has strange visions of people she's never seen before! Ryder doesn't think she's anything special--until two extremely attractive boys arrive at her school and begin to fight for her attention.

I liked that Ryder is an "ordinary" teenager who can't fly, can't cast spells, can't drink blood, and is just trying to survive high school. Lately I've been reading a lot of paranormal novels, and it was nice to read something different. The author does a good job of helping the reader get to know Ryder and the two boys in the love triangle, Ollie and Ari. Now those were two well created characters ;) The dialogue and banter between the three was entertaining and hilarious. It was fun to read Ollie and Ari's confrontations! So much tension floating around in the air...and testosterone!

Greek mythology plays a huge part in this novel. After the "Omg I can't believe it I'm cursed half- goddess no what this can't be true"part, the reader dives headfirst into Underworld. Literally. Ollie and Ari seemed sorta stupid considering who they are...I don't want to spoil anything but I'm sure you can guess that they are characters from Greek mythology! While reading I was thinking, "Really? After who knows how many years of being alive, you still don't know all the gods and goddesses? You don't even know their animal symbols?"

Unfortunately, there isn't much action.  This is definitely a romance novel. Ollie and Ryder are great characters who really are the reason a reader doesn't stop reading after the first few chapters. The reader wants to know how this love triangle will end--Ollie or Ryder?

A pretty good read, but definitely not perfect. If you want a quick read with a ton of romance and Greek mythology, The Thousand Year Curse is for you! Seriously, consider reading this book :)

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday (10): Sentinel by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly bookish event hosted by Breaking the Spine. This is a meme that many book blogs participate in to goggle over highly anticipated upcoming releases and fabulous covers and authors!

I am most certainly looking forward to this book, but I mostly picked Sentinel for this Wednesday because Jen released the synopsis for the book today! Sentinel is the last book in her bestselling Covenant series, and will be out for release on November 2nd, 2013 through Spencer Hill Press.

Sentinel (Covenant, #5)Goodreads Synopsis:
As the mortal world slowly slips into chaos of the godly kind, Alexandria Andros must overcome a stunning defeat that has left her shaken and in doubt of their ability to end this war once and for all.

And with all the obstacles between Alex and her happily-ever-after with the swoonworthy Aiden St. Delphi, they must now trust a deadly foe as they travel deep into the Underworld to release one of the most dangerous gods of all time.

In the stunning, action-packed climax to the bestselling Covenant Series, Alex must face a terrible choice: the destruction of everything and everyone she holds dear… or the end of herself.

Holy crap. "...they must now trust a deadly foe as the travel deep into the Underworld..." I have a feeling this might be Seth, considering Seth made an appearance in one of the teasers Jen shared with everyone, in the Underworld, in a brewing fight between Hades and an unnamed TITAN! Most dangerous gods? Yikes. End of herself? Please, no. Alex is shaken? She better not stay that way for too long. Good gods I just need this book ASAP. I'm really sad that there aren't ARC's going out for Sentinel, but it's understandable that they want no chance of spoilers being leaked. Can't wait for this book! 


Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Release Day: Origin by Jennifer L. Armentrout, The Liberator by Victoria Scott, The Bitter Kingdom by Rae Carson, and Many, Many More...

Today is a pretty big release day. Entangled is releasing a few of their books, and HarperCollins is distributing a whole slew of new and re-releases (paperback editions) today. Here are some of the ones I'm looking especially forward to!

Origin (Lux #4) by Jennifer L. Armentrout

(We actually already reviewed this one, and you can view that HERE.)

Origin (Lux, #4) Synopsis:

Daemon will do anything to get Katy back.

After the successful but disastrous raid on Mount Weather, he’s facing the impossible. Katy is gone. Taken. Everything becomes about finding her. Taking out anyone who stands in his way? Done. Burning down the whole world to save her? Gladly. Exposing his alien race to the world? With pleasure.

All Katy can do is survive.

Surrounded by enemies, the only way she can come out of this is to adapt. After all, there are sides of Daedalus that don’t seem entirely crazy, but the group’s goals are frightening and the truths they speak even more disturbing. Who are the real bad guys? Daedalus? Mankind? Or the Luxen?

Together, they can face anything.

But the most dangerous foe has been there all along, and when the truths are exposed and the lies come crumbling down, which side will Daemon and Katy be standing on?

And will they even be together?

The Bitter Kingdom (Fire and Thorns, #3)The Bitter Kingdom (The Girl of Fire and Thorns #3) by Rae Carson

The epic conclusion to Rae Carson's Fire and Thorns trilogy. The seventeen-year-old sorcerer-queen will travel into the unknown realm of the enemy to win back her true love, save her country, and uncover the final secrets of her destiny.

Elisa is a fugitive in her own country. Her enemies have stolen the man she loves in order to lure her to the gate of darkness. As she and her daring companions take one last quest into unknown enemy territory to save Hector, Elisa will face hardships she's never imagined. And she will discover secrets about herself and her world that could change the course of history. She must rise up as champion-a champion to those who have hated her most.

The Liberator (Dante Walker, #2)The Liberator (Dante Walker #2) by Victoria Scott

Bad boy, meet bad girl.

Dante has a shiny new cuff wrapped around his ankle, and he doesn't like that mess one bit. His new accessory comes straight from Big Guy himself and marks the former demon as a liberator. Despite his gritty past and bad boy ways, Dante Walker has been granted a second chance.

When Dante is given his first mission as a liberator to save the soul of seventeen-year-old Aspen, he knows he’s got this. But Aspen reminds him of the rebellious life he used to live and is making it difficult to resist sinful temptations. Though Dante is committed to living clean for his girlfriend Charlie, this dude’s been a playboy for far too long…and old demons die hard.

With Charlie becoming the girl she was never able to be pre-makeover and Aspen showing him how delicious it feels to embrace his inner beast, Dante will have to go somewhere he never thought he’d return to in order to accomplish the impossible: save the girl he’s been assigned to, and keep the girl he loves.

Crown of Midnight (Throne of Glass, #2)Crown of Midnight (Throne of Glass #2) by Sarah J. Maas

An assassin’s loyalties are always in doubt.
But her heart never wavers.

After a year of hard labor in the Salt Mines of Endovier, eighteen-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien has won the king's contest to become the new royal assassin. Yet Celaena is far from loyal to the crown – a secret she hides from even her most intimate confidantes.

Keeping up the deadly charade—while pretending to do the king's bidding—will test her in frightening new ways, especially when she's given a task that could jeopardize everything she's come to care for. And there are far more dangerous forces gathering on the horizon -- forces that threaten to destroy her entire world, and will surely force Celaena to make a choice.

Where do the assassin’s loyalties lie, and who is she most willing to fight for?

Well, there are some to errrr name a few :)

Any books you looked forward to that came out today?

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

ARC Review: Origin by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Origin (Lux, #4)Origin by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Steph's Rating: 5 stars
Dani's Rating: 5 stars
Overall Rating: 5 stars

Format: e-ARC
Publication Date: August 27th, 2013
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Pages: 400

Goodreads Synopsis:

Daemon will do anything to get Katy back.

After the successful but disastrous raid on Mount Weather, he’s facing the impossible. Katy is gone. Taken. Everything becomes about finding her. Taking out anyone who stands in his way? Done. Burning down the whole world to save her? Gladly. Exposing his alien race to the world? With pleasure.

All Katy can do is survive.

Surrounded by enemies, the only way she can come out of this is to adapt. After all, there are sides of Daedalus that don’t seem entirely crazy, but the group’s goals are frightening and the truths they speak even more disturbing. Who are the real bad guys? Daedalus? Mankind? Or the Luxen?

Together, they can face anything.

But the most dangerous foe has been there all along, and when the truths are exposed and the lies come crumbling down, which side will Daemon and Katy be standing on?

And will they even be together?

Steph's Review:

Thank you so much to Entangled Teen for providing us with an early copy in exchange for our fair and honest review. Also, to readers, be wary that there are *spoilers* for the first three books in the series.

You would not believe how ecstatic I was when I found out I got an ARC for this. I couldn't sleep the entire night after I found out about it, and I was constantly checking my email to see whether or not the ebook came in. Dani alerted me about the incoming while I happened to be sitting in a classroom, and I spazzed out. My table mates thought I was a lunatic, which I suppose I can't deny. Thinking about this book even now gives me THE FEELS.

It took me a while to absorb this book. I read it once, couldn't believe what happened, and made another savory reread in order to get the full story. Jen knows how to make magic with every word and page, and I enjoyed reading EVERY single part of this book! There were no slow moments at all, and this is the craziest ride to date with Daemon and Katy. 

Katy, as a hybrid has been captured by Daedalus, and is now undergoing the horror that Dawson and Beth had to experience. She can only endure, and there is little hope for escape. She's looking every which way for a chance to make a run for it, only to come short with nothing. Daedalus tells her about the supposed "true nature" of the Luxen, making her question everything she's discovered so far. Who should she believe?

Daemon is going insane, and that's honestly not enough to say about his simmering anger and fear. On a seemingly futile rescue mission that he makes his own--and only his, he along with Katy will have to make heartbreaking realizations about the world they actually live in.

This book is a game changer. A lot of people weren't happy with how the cover turned out, but Jen explained that this book needed a different cover style. After reading this book, I completely agree. Origin is a magnitude 9+ earthquake to the reader and to the Lux world. Nothing is going to be the same after this point. Overall, this book is very intense compared to the books before it. Katy's captivity was the saddest part to read, and makes you wonder how Beth and Dawson managed to survive in such a situation for years. The dual POV's was wonderful on Jen's part! She expertly balances both Katy and Daemon's voices, which I absolutely adored (especially that Daemon POV!)

I know I seem vague. But trust me, I do not want to spoil this book, and that is extremely difficult. I feel like every sentence in this book is going to give away something huge. Origin is a multi-jaw-dropping book that will elicit the most frustrated yet contented feelings from you. Perfect in all cases!

You didn't think I forgot about the Daemon and Katy love business, did you? GAH THIS COUPLE. They have to be my favorite book couple of all time now. They were somewhere at the top, but now they undoubtedly hold the faraway number one spot. Ack I can't say! But I really, really want to! Just be looking forward to the sweetest moment between these two in the entire series. They are just a match made somewhere beyond and better than heaven. They are both such strong characters, and despite all the tragedy they are facing, they never forget about each other. 

This book is full of right hooks. An unexpected betrayal totally blew my mind away. I did not see that part coming. I saw other people mentioning this here and there on other reviews or comment threads, and I do not know how I missed it in the previous books. I mean, my face probably looked something like this when I read the few lines with the reveal:

Jenna Marbles

Jenna Marbles? You grace us with your presence.

Actually, now that I think about it, that was probably my face for the majority of the book.

The ending.
Holyfoshizzlecrapomgwhatjusthappenednononoyoucan'tjustenditthereIwon'tallowit. I think I say that "shit just got real" in every single one of my JLA book reviews. Every time I think things can't get worse, she just throws me something and shows me that IT CAN. I'm not even going to bother to say that phrase this time, because I probably will be wrong yet again. The ending wasn't as bad as Opal in my opinion, or at least it wasn't one that turned on the waterworks, but sitting tight on this one for the next at least half year is going to be tough. Very, very tough.

If you haven't started the Lux series, I do not know what you have been doing with your life these past few years. Put these books at the top of your to-read list ASAP. For those of you who have been earnestly and patiently waiting (I mean really! This book's release got pushed back twice!), it is 100% worth the wait. The suspense is a killer. The revealed secrets and revelations are mind-shattering. The romance is hot hot hot. I warn you ahead of time of a major information and sensory overload after you finish this book. It was just perfect cover to cover, and I recommend Origin to everyone.


Oh, and P.S.
You probably won't get this yet, but it's sort of my teaser to you.
Kaiden Rowe and Anna Whitt shall make an appearance. (HAHAHA--love ya Jen!)

Monday, August 19, 2013

The Fiery Heart by Richelle Mead Chapter 2!

Last week, Richelle released the first chapter to The Fiery Heart, which can be viewed HERE (hosted by Entertainment Weekly's Shelf Life). Today....we get CHAPTER 2! HURRAH! I am so excited for this book and I'm loving these kinds of teasers that Richelle is throwing to us. Frankly, I thought the ending to Chapter 1 was a cliffhanger by itself. Yeah, I'm being a bit vague so I don't splurt out spoilers. So glad that we get just a little more sneak peak that the story! If you haven't read chapter 1, I highly suggest you do so right about NOW.

You can view Chapter 2 here (hosted by Hollywood Crush this time--PDF must be downloaded in order to view content):

Just wanted to share this all with you guys quickly! Look forward to an upcoming review of Origin by Jennifer L. Armentrout sometime this week (before the release day of course :D).

The Fiery Heart (Bloodlines, #4)Goodreads Synopsis:

In The Indigo Spell, Sydney was torn between the Alchemist way of life and what her heart and gut were telling her to do. And in one breathtaking moment that Richelle Mead fans will never forget, she made a decision that shocked even her. . . .

But the struggle isn't over for Sydney. As she navigates the aftermath of her life-changing decision, she still finds herself pulled in too many directions at once. Her sister Zoe has arrived, and while Sydney longs to grow closer to her, there's still so much she must keep secret. Working with Marcus has changed the way she views the Alchemists, and Sydney must tread a careful path as she harnesses her profound magical ability to undermine the way of life she was raised to defend. Consumed by passion and vengeance, Sydney struggles to keep her secret life under wraps as the threat of exposure—and re-education—looms larger than ever.

Pulses will race throughout this thrilling fourth installment in the New York Times bestselling Bloodlines series, where no secret is safe.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Cover Reveal: Trust in Me by J.Lynn + GIVEAWAY

Hey everyone! Today we have a cover reveal of Trust in Me by J. Lynn, aka the YA queen Jennifer L. Armentrout. It's a sort of sequel to Wait for You, (read our review of Wait for You HERE) but told from none other the heartthrob Cam's POV. Keep scrolling for a giveaway of Trust in Me!

It’s Wait for You as you’ve never seen it. Trust in Me lets you in on Cam’s side of the #1 New York Times Bestselling story.

Cameron Hamilton is used to getting what he wants, especially when it comes to women. But when Avery Morgansten comes crashing into his life – literally – he finally meets the one person who can resist his soulful baby blues. But Cam’s not ready to give up. He can’t get the feisty and intriguing girl out of his head.

Avery has secrets, secrets that keep her from admitting the feelings Cam knows she has for him. Will persistence (and some delicious homemade cookies) help him break down her barriers and gain her trust? Or will he be shut out of Avery's life, losing his first real shot at the kind of love that lasts forever?

Buy it now!  

Giveaway time! Enter for a copy of Trust in Me. :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Review: Shadow and Bone (Grisha Trilogy #1) by Leigh Bardugo

Hey bookworms! Today I have a special guest for honorary Word Walker named Becca! Becca is a close friend of mine and we love to talk about anything and everything about books, from bashing the horrible boy who broke an innocent girl's heart to swooning over the perfect book boyfriend. Here is her review...Enjoy! :3 

Shadow and Bone (Grisha Trilogy #1) by Leigh Bardugo
Dani's rating: 4.5 stars
Becca's rating: 4.5 stars

Format: Hardcover
Pages: 356
Publisher: Henry and Holt Co.
Publication Date: June 5, 2012 (First published May 17, 2013)


Veronica Roth claimed this book was-"Unlike anything I've ever read,". Boy, did she get it right. Okay, before I begin, let me cover some of the basics of the plot so we know what we’re working with here. This book takes place in Ravka, which is best described as a supernatural take on Russia. (Hence the main character’s name being Alina Starkov, which is about as Russian as one can get). Alina and Mal are best friends and fellow orphans who grew up together and are now a part of the King’s Army. They were traveling to the deadly and mysterious area known as the Shadow Fold when their entire world turned around. Through a deadly and magical series of events, it is revealed that Alina possesses an amazing power. A power that literally can either heal or rip apart Ravka. At this point, a second army made up of beautiful people possessing magical abilities known as the Grisha swoop in. And now, the fun really begins.

This book is completely different from anything I've recently read. It is just so...unique, and that's what I loved about it. Nothing is quite as it seems, and the characters have true depth to them, even those that are only briefly touched on. So many YA books now have become so blasé, so formulated, and so predictable. That is not the case with Shadow and Bone. The tension between the main army of ordinary humans and the Grisha was enthralling. I was as enraptured by the politics of the novel as I was by the lives of the characters, something that is very rare for me to say. Let’s get real here people--normally I’m about as interested in fictional politics as I am in the author’s vivid description of a tree trunk-which is to say, no interest at all. Despite this, I was shocked to find myself so drawn to the politics and geographical disputes at the heart of this novel.  While the middle section of the novel might have seemed slow to some, it was a vital piece of the overall puzzle and provided greater detail about key elements and characters.

Speaking of the characters-they were certainly compelling. I mean, take the Darkling for example. Even his title is mysterious and somehow kind of sexy in a dangerous and unknown sort of way. Then there’s our lovable protagonist, Alina. Now, initially Alina is in no way what you would picture a YA heroine to be-she’s plain, pale, and sickly--not your strong and attractive Katniss Everdeen. When I first read the author's description of her I was like, “Seriously, this is your heroine, your protagonist, the girl who’s going to save Ravka ?” However, rest assured!  Alina’s got a lot more to her than wnat you see at first glance, and she will rise to the occasion. Next, there’s Mal, who is of course gorgeous, because this is a YA novel and who are we kidding it needs to have at least one source of eye candy. Minimum. As Alina’s long-time best friend it was obvious from the start that he was going to be an important part of the book.

This novel had a little bit of everything-fantasy, romance, adventure, even darker themes (both literally and emotionally) as well. It was an interesting blend that really worked well together. I would have liked to have seen more of Mal. He's hot and a talented tracker, what more do you need? However, I feel that he will play a much larger role in the next book. Now, all of this said, it’s not as if this book was without its faults. Realistically speaking, nothing in life is ever quite perfect, and this book, while being a wonderful read, is no exception. The writing style is….okay. The plot is way better than the quality of writing. There’s no getting around it. There’s nothing wrong with the writing style, but it’s nothing special or elevated either. Also, I found some of the supposed “plot twists” a little too predictable. (I won’t say any more than this so as not to spoil the book for anyone who hasn’t read it yet-because ya’ll really should read it if you get the chance). Additionally, I found Alina a little too naïve and trusting at times, (the Darkling, *cough cough*) especially considering she grew up an orphan, something that tends to make people tougher and slower to trust. I also wished she would have had a little more self-confidence, although her lack of it was certainly understandable. I think she’ll start to develop some more spunk as the series goes on. Still, there’s no denying that I absolutely LOVED this book and will definitely be coming back for the second. :D

A note from Dani: I disagree with Becca in 1 aspect. I thought that Leigh Bardugo's writing style was superb and compelling. It is rather simple, but that's why it appealed to me.
 All in all, a great read.

~Dani and Becca

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Teaser Tuesday: Shadow and Bone (Grisha Trilogy #1) by Leigh Bardugo

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by mizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share a few “teaser” sentences or a whole passage from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers

A friend recently recommended this book to me, and I loved it! (For the most wasn't perfect.) Review coming soon!

Goodreads Synopsis:
The Shadow Fold, a swathe of impenetrable darkness, crawling with monsters that feast on human flesh, is slowly destroying the once-great nation of Ravka.

Alina, a pale, lonely orphan, discovers a unique power that thrusts her into the lavish world of the kingdom’s magical elite—the Grisha. Could she be the key to unravelling the dark fabric of the Shadow Fold and setting Ravka free?

The Darkling, a creature of seductive charm and terrifying power, leader of the Grisha. If Alina is to fulfill her destiny, she must discover how to unlock her gift and face up to her dangerous attraction to him.

But what of Mal, Alina’s childhood best friend? As Alina contemplates her dazzling new future, why can’t she ever quite forget him?

Glorious. Epic. Irresistible. Romance

My Teaser:
This time, I was better prepared for the dark that engulfed me, but it was still frightening. Instinctively, I reached forward, searching for something to hold on to. The Darkling caught my arm and his bare hand slid into mine. I felt that same powerful certainty wash through me and then the Darkling's call, pure and compelling, demanding an answer. WIth a mixture of panic and relief, I felt something rising up inside me. This time, I didn't try to fight it. I let it have its way.

What is this thing rising up inside of the protagonist? Anger? Sadness? Or something else entirely? And who is this "Darkling"? Reading Shadow and Bone to find out! (Or just read the review coming up in a day or two)

Hope you guys are enjoying the last few days of summer before school starts! And if you just started school, good luck and try to keep some time for reading! Fortunately, I have a few school-free days left.


Sunday, August 11, 2013

Review: Angelfall by Susan Ee

Angelfall by Susan Ee (Penryn & the End of Days #1)
Dani's rating: 5 stars

Format: Paperback
Pages: 325 
Publisher: Hodder and Stoughton
Publication Date: May 23, 2013

Goodreads synopsis:

It's been six weeks since the angels of the apocalypse destroyed the world as we know it. Only pockets of humanity remain. 

Savage street gangs rule the day while fear and superstition rule the night.

When angels fly away with a helpless girl, her seventeen-year-old sister Penryn will do anything to get her back...

Dani's review:

Wow! This book was flat-out AMAZING. After reading the last page, which had a sorta cliffhanger ending that nonetheless, whether it was a cliffhanger or not, had me flipping through the last pages hoping my eyes had tricked me and that there was one more chapter. Sadly, I had reached the end. :(

Susan Ee has a wonderful storytelling skill complete with vivid and rather gruesome imagery. She isn't afraid to make the reader shocked and horrified of the post-apocalyptic world she has created. You know the saying, ignorance is bliss? Well, Ms. Ee has decided to lift the veil and make us see the cold, hard truth.

If I hadn't looked Susan Ee up on Goodreads, I wouldn't have known she is a debut and self-published author. There is nothing, and I mean no trace of evidence whatsoever, that shows that this is her first published book. Oftentimes, self-published authors have more typos and not-so-good writing because they don't have a publishing company to help them. But this awe-inspiring woman is the exception. Plus, Angelfall was first released in kindle format, yet it still rocked the world as readers everywhere discovered a worthy successor to the dystopia throne after The Hunger Games ended. Everyone rejoice, the search is over!

Angelfall begins with the protagonist Penryn, a teenage girl hardened by family rifts and learning to survive, escaping her temporary "home" with her schizophrenic mother and crippled sister, Paige. The human world fell apart when angels, not the nice cherubs in paintings, invaded the earth. These angels are brutal killers. Humans are as frivolous and disposable to them as if we were tiny ants. After witnessing a gang of angels beat up another angel within an inch of his life, Penryn did something she never thought she would do--she helped an angel. 

In a tearful and lightning quick turn of events, Penryn found herself stuck with the enemy: an angel named Raffe. And even worse, her dear sister--who can't walk with her shriveled legs-- kidnapped. I loved that Penryn refused to believe that her sister was dead despite the obvious signs pointing to her death. She is so devoted to her family, even her crazy mother who sees invisible demons, and she will risk anything and everything to keep her fragile family safe.

Angelfall is chock full of action and sci-fi. There are these mysterious creatures whose trail of dead bodies is the only sign of their existence, and a side plot of the novel is figuring out what these things are. The foreshadowing is well done, faint yet compelling. I almost discovered what the things are, but the entire idea is so gross, I didn't want to believe it.

Raffe is so sweet even though he tries to keep his tough guy persona. He is described as a perfect, beautiful, and flawless version of a human. His banter with Penryn was hilarious, and when he subtly called Penryn beautiful? <3 Ladies, unleash your inner fangirl!

There's not much else I can say without spoiling the novel's plot. There is a bit of romance that might bloom into something bigger in the sequel, but it's more a dystopia novel with a touch of sci-fi and a whole lot of scary events. This novel is not for the easily frightened, so read at your own risk! I high recommend this novel for anyone searching for another dystopia novel that is a worthy successor to The Hunger Games.


P.S. Yes, the cover is rather unassuming and not pretty at all, and the angel wings look more like butterfly wings, but the inside of a book is what makes it great. This novel will not disappoint you.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday (9): United We Spy by Ally Carter

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly bookish event hosted by Breaking the Spine. This is a meme that many book blogs participate in to goggle over highly anticipated upcoming releases and fabulous covers and authors!

 Well darlings, today was my first day of school for this year (yes, school starts very early in August over here. *sigh*) It was just alright if you ask me. I was just secretly plotting this WOW throughout most of the day though, so today's featured book is United We Spy by Ally Carter. 

United We Spy (Gallagher Girls, #6) 

Goodreads Synopsis:

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.

United We Spy is the final Gallagher Girl book. I've been following this series since the year the first book came out in 2006. Not funny that we've had to wait over 6 years for 6 books right? Honestly, since we have to wait so much time between each book, I forget what happens in the last when I pick up the next installment. Mostly, as long as all the characters I love stay alive, there are some kickass fight scenes that show Cam's inherent badassery as always, and a happy ending for my dear Zach+Cammie (Zammie?--doesn't quite work huh.), this girl will be satisfied. This is another one of the series ending this year, but who knows if this ending will be the one to tip me over the edge of insanity ;).  

Monday, August 5, 2013

Cover Reveal, Excerpt, and Giveaway: Chaos (The Kardia Chronicles #1) by Christine O'Neil

Today Christine O’Neil and Entangled Teen Ember are revealing the cover for book 1 in The Kardia Chronicles Series, CHAOS. Coming out this August!

On to the reveal!


My name is Maggie Raynard. After sixteen years being just plain me, suddenly I can kill people when I lose my temper. Turns out I'm a semi-god, descended from Aphrodite. Sounds cool in theory, but when I accidentally put my ex-boyfriend in a coma, things go downhill pretty fast.

Now some new guy named Mac Finnegan has made it his mission in life to continually piss me off. I'm stuck learning how to use my new powers while also dealing with regular high school problems, and with this---annoying and super-hot---guy all up in my business, I'm about to flip out.

But it gets worse. I just learned there's this council for semis that wants me dead. They think I'm bad to the bone and when my ex suddenly dies, it's like everyone is determined to take me out. Mac might turn out to be my only salvation, but he's got secrets of his own---that may just kill us both.

Exclusive Excerpt:
I was done with guys.
Not in that fake, I-say-that-but-deep-down-I-really-want-a-boyfriend kind of way, but in, like, the seriously-I'd-rather-eat-maggoty-cheese kind of way. No relationships. Not for me. Not now and maybe not ever. Who I am…what I am, and what I’m capable of? Everyone’s better off this way.
"I have to stop at my locker real quick," I said, veering to the right and cutting through the crush of kids heading straight like wildebeests to a watering hole. Libby followed and then stood by me as I fiddled with the lock.
"What's that?" She pointed to a white piece of paper sticking out half an inch from one of the slots in the olive metal door.
I tugged the padlock open and flicked the catch with my thumb. "Dunno." Maybe Bink had left me another note. Bink was my neighbor, bud, and—most days—my ride home. Last time I’d found a note in my locker, it was when his cell phone died and he needed to bail early. I seriously hoped this wasn’t a repeat performance.
I mentally ran down the list of people I could bug for a ride and came up empty. Libby always had to stay after for some activity or another, and I only really had two other people I could call "friends" and neither lived near me. I wrinkled my nose in anticipation of the dirty-sneakers-meets-day-old-bologna smell of a bus filled with kids who'd had last-period gym and opted not to change clothes. With a sigh, I pulled open the door and the white rectangle floated to the floor.
Libby bent to grab it and read it out loud. "'Dear Sad and Lonely…'" She trailed off and went quiet for a few seconds until her peachy complexion went hot pink, and then she gasped. "Oh my God. Holy… Oh, Mags, you are so not going to like this."
I snatched the paper from her, trying to ward off the growing pit in my gut.

Dear Sad and Lonely,
Since I can almost guarantee She is about to give you some seriously shite advice like she does every week, let me be the voice of reason. Your boyfriend is just like most high school guys. Cut him some slack and, even better, why not offer to learn how to play some of the games he likes? He'd probably appreciate the effort and might even take you somewhere nice after. If that doesn't work, sit him down and let him know how you're feeling so he can tell you what's going on with him. Could be that constantly calling the things he likes stupid isn't the best way to get what you want in this situation, yeah? In any case, don't let the ramblings of some bitter emo chick who's probably never had a boyfriend ruin your relationship.
Hope it helps,

The shock was too thick to let the anger in right away, but as stunned as I was, I knew exactly who was behind this. There was only one person in the whole school who would use the word “shite.”
Mac Finnegan.
Opinionated, annoying, hot—did I mention annoying?—Mac Finnegan, who had barely given me the time of day since he'd come to Crestwood High a couple months ago. Mac Finnegan, who thought he was soooo cool with his Irish accent and his mocking smile. Mac Finnegan, who inexplicably made me want to lick him like an ice cream cone and then immediately rinse my mouth out with acid.
How had he discovered my secret? Only Bink and Libby knew I was the girl behind “That's What She Said,” and I would have bet everything I owned that neither of them would have ratted me out.
Didn’t matter, though. One way or another, he knew. Even worse, he'd chosen to taunt me with it. Bitter emo chick who’s probably never had a boyfriend, indeed. I had a boyfriend once and it hadn’t ended well for either of us. I was in no rush to repeat the experience. Besides, what did this Irish asshat care?
Anger tightened my chest. I could feel the power rising in me, clawing to get out, roaring to be heard. The hair on my arms stood on end as I tried to breathe through it, to let the fury dissipate and flow out of my pores in harmless pings of energy, but it was no use. I pressed a hand to my locker and opened up the tiniest of escape valves, the spout of the teakettle, whistling off a stream of steam. The cheap metal instantly heated against my skin, the door buckling and warping on the spot just beneath my fingertips.
"Uh, Mags—" Libby whispered urgently, but a male voice cut her off.
"How's it going there, Libby? Maggie."
I turned around, still trying to catch my breath, and there he was, strolling by, a grin splitting his sinfully beautiful face.
Mac Finnegan, who had decided that being the new kid wasn't bad enough, so he had to actively go out of his way to make enemies. Mac Finnegan, who wanted to turn my world upside down rather than minding his own business. Mac Finnegan, who didn't know the meaning of live and let live.
Mac Finnegan, who clearly had no idea who he was fucking with.

 Giveaway Time! 
1 ebook copy of CHAOS is up for grabs! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About the Author:

Christine O'Neil was born and raised in Connecticut, where she spent most of her childhood outdoors catching salamanders, frogs and colds. When she wasn't terrorizing Mother Nature, she was curled up under the covers with her nose in a book. As an adult, she's stopped stalking amphibians, but still loves books. When she isn't reading, she likes to spend her time people-watching. In fact, she's probably watching you RIGHT NOW O_O She's also pretty obsessed with writing YA books, but if she had to pick another profession she would be a ninja...or a Professor of the Dark Arts. 

Friday, August 2, 2013

Review: Darker Days (The Darker Agency #1) by Jus Accardo

A huge thank you to Entangled Publishing for giving me an ARC copy of this novel in exchange for my fair and honest review.

Darker Days (The Darker Agency #1) by Jus Accardo
Dani's rating: 5 stars
Overall rating: 5 stars

Format: e-book
Pages: 332 (in PDF format)
Publication Date: August 19, 2013
Publisher: Entangled Publishing

Goodreads synopsis:
Jessie Darker goes to high school during the day, but at night she helps with the family investigation business. Cheating husbands and stolen inheritances? They’re your girls—but their specialty is a bit darker. Zombie in your garage? Pesky Poltergeist living in your pool? They’ll have the problem solved in a magical minute. For a nominal fee, of course...

When gorgeous new client, Lukas Scott, saunters into the office requesting their help to find a stolen box, it sounds like a simple case—until the truth comes out. The box is full of Sin.

Seven deadly ones, in fact.

They’ve got five days to recapture the Sins before they're recalled by the box, taking seven hijacked human bodies with them. Easy peasy—except for one thing...

There’s a spell that will allow the Sins to remain free, causing chaos forever. When the key ingredient threatens the life of someone she knows, Jessie must make the ultimate choice between love and family—or lose everything

Dani's review:
I was ecstatic when I received an email from Entangled telling me that I had been one of the names randomly picked from a giveaway to receive an ARC of Darker Days! I had heard good things about Jus's Denazen series, but I never got around to read it. This is the first novel I have read by Jus Accardo, and I was definitely NOT disappointed.

Darker Days began with Jessie Darker, a badass, hilarious, and spunky girl, arriving at a posh neighborhood.  She got on her mom's bad side and naturally, was given a punishment. But this is not your normal punishment. Nope, no grounding, phone privileges taken away, or anything like that. Her horrid retaliation for pissing off her mom is to get rid of a zombie floating in a prissy, rich, leopard print bikini wearing lady's pool. Oh, and the zombie is the lady's deceased husband.

I was hooked on this book from the first sentence. Jessie's running commentary on what she thought of each and every person, place, or thing she saw made me LOL so much! Jus Accardo did a fantastic job creating Jessie's personality and voice as Jessie narrates the story in first person. Jessie is a great, strong protagonist who isn't afraid to say what she thinks even if it lands her in boiling water.

The action really begins to start when the smokin' hot Lukas Scott steps in Jessie and her mother's front door. Lukas wants to enlist their help in trapping the 7 deadly sins, which have accidentally been set loose on the world. If you're Catholic or Christian, you've probably heard of these guys: Envy, Gluttony, Greed, Lust, Pride, Sloth, and Wrath. But here's the catch; Lukas is Wrath. In a bizarre turn of events that will be revealed when you read this novel, Wrath took over Lukas's body while he was human. However, Lukas's resolve is so strong that he manages to maintain some control over his actions.

I loved reading about Jessie and Lukas's encounters with the other Sins as they ran around town trying to save the world while making several hilarious and even deadly mistakes. It was refreshing to finally read a paranormal YA book where the parents, in this case Jessie's mom, know about the supernatural creatures. Jessie and Lukas's romance was so, so, sugary sweet with a cherry on top. There was no insta-love in the room. The two seemed to fall together naturally as if it was meant to be. (I know, "mean to be" is a cheesy phrase but I still love it.)

As the synopsis above says, "Jessie must make the ultimate choice between love and family—or lose everything". The ending was incredibly heart-stopping because Murphy's Law(Look it up if you don't know what this is please) struck again and everything that could have gone wrong WENT WRONG. Jessie needed to make a literal deal with the devil. Okay, not Lucifer himself, but one of his minions. Either way, everything depended on Jessie's ability to keep her wits about to save the people she cared most about.

I loved every single nuance about this novel. It was bursting with blood pumping action, snarky humour and sarcasm, and characterization so awesome and well developed that readers will feel like the characters could jump out of the pages and start having a conversation! If you want to read a novel with an amazing plot full of twists and turns, a swoon worthy guy, and a snarky heroine, I suggest you buy Darker Days now.

P.S. Don't you love the cover? I look the color scheme; it creates this whole supernatural feel. And the cover model for Jessie? She's perfect! She embodies Jessie's personality wonderfully and has the "Don't mess with me or else" look down. Love! :3

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