Book Review, Books, Fantasy, Fiction, Sci-fi, series, Suspense, YA

Book Review: The Magician’s Convention ~ Elena Paige

The Magician's Convention


Title: The Magician’s Convention (The Magicians: Book 1)
Author: Elena Paige
Rating: 5 Stars
Reviewed by: Shakera
Genre: Fantasy, Magic
Publisher: Angelos Publishing
Date of Release: May 1, 2018
Pages: 252
Format: ePub (Author via AXP)

At some point in everyone’s life, they loved magic, thought magic was real, watched a movie/show about magic, wished they could do magic. For Toby, it was a reality… he just didn’t know it yet. One morning, which should have been an ordinary morning, twelve-year-old Toby sees a long line of people dressed in funny clothes, waiting outside his neighbor’s house. He calls for his grandfather, but his grandfather doesn’t see anything. Grandpa goes upstairs and now he’s missing. In order to save his grandfather, Toby must dive headfirst into a world he didn’t know existed and believe the impossible. With the help of Thatch and Wesa, both of whom are also in the same boat as Toby, must work together to save their loved ones and preserve the world of magic.

This had the vibe of Harry Potter with the world building and how two separate worlds coexist. Each chapter painted a vivid picture and the story drew you in with every chapter. As the chapters passed by, the action intensified and left you needing to know what happens next. As the Toby, Thatch, and Wesa worked together as a team and thwarted the villain along the way, they found they had allies in the most interesting places… and people. I loved this story and the preview of the next book only whetted my appetite, but I need the next one immediately! Maybe if I say “Abracadabra”…

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Book Review, Books, Fantasy, Fiction, HEA, Release Day, Romance, Sci-fi, series, YA

Release Blitz & Book Review: Hope’s Decree & Hope’s Deceit ~ Angela McPherson

Title: Hope’s Decree

Author: Angela McPherson

Genre: Young Adult Paranormal/Fantasy Romance

Publisher: Untold Press

Cover Designer: Just write. Creations

Blurb:

When everything else is lost, there is always hope.

Most teens want an epic senior year. All Trinity Whitebone hoped for was a normal one. She is the direct descendant of Pandora and fated to rectify the terrors released into the world by her curious ancestor.

Blain Heros is the sworn guardian created by Zeus to protect Trinity. His mission is to train her to defend humans against Pandora’s curse. For Blain, training a mortal for battle is impossible. For Trinity, taking orders from an overbearing immortal whose touch leaves her dizzy, is hopeless. But with each passing lesson, frustration and confusion give way to an electrifying bond.

Together they are a force to be feared, only defending humans against an ancient curse isn’t the only threat in the world anymore. A band of rogue immortals is hunting Trinity because her power is key to unleashing an unholy darkness into the mortal realm. As the war between light and dark brews, Trinity vows to fully embrace her fate–or die trying.

*The final book in The Fated trilogy is coming out soon*

 

This is by far one of the best YA series I’ve read, so far. While Trinity starts off shy, she grows with confidence each step of the way. Blain came off as hot and cold, but once you get to know him… you understand why. The chemistry between them was great and I enjoyed each of their interactions together. There was a bit of a love triangle in the beginning, but it wasn’t distracting and didn’t take away from the story. The way the Greek Mythology was woven into the story was flawless. Highly recommend this book for YA lovers and Greek Mythology fans!


 

Title: Hope’s Deceit

Author: Angela McPherson

Genre: Young Adult Paranormal/Fantasy Romance

Publisher: Untold Press

Cover Designer: Just write. Creations

Blurb:

In the end, light may not be enough to outshine the darkness. 

After Melia’s near-fatal attack, the connection binding Trinity and Blain shifts, allowing a dark force to wedge them apart. Her only hope for the life she craves is stopping Melia and her gang of Rogues.

Too bad life never plays fair. As Trinity’s eighteenth birthday draws near, new abilities manifest. More problems occur when objects around her spontaneously erupt in flames. While Trinity tries to manage her new powers, Blain works with Watchers to root out Melia’s hiding place. Unfortunately, Trinity’s uncontrolled talent evokes suspicion, causing old friends to challenge her ability to fulfill her destiny.

 Havoc between the immortals ensues, leaving mortals unprotected as a new threat surfaces. Melia found a way to awaken an ancient god, whose wrath–if released–is sure to create more devastation than Pandora ever dreamed of. Everything about Trinity’s life is changing, except her vow: Keep those she cares for safe.

But fate always has an ulterior plan.

So… it was like someone just pushed the pause button on the remote, let me get some snacks and a beverage, come back to my reading cove, and they pressed play. We pick up right where we left off, in non-stop action! First off, the romance between Trinity and Blain… heats up! I feel the flames, ladies and gentlemen! I was in awe of the character development for Trinity between book 1 and now. She is a much stronger character in this book and it was awesome to watch it unfold before your eyes. I won’t lie, in the first book I thought Morpheus was a bit creepy, however, in this book… he is a hoot! The end sets up the finale quite well, and I’m excited to see how this plays out! Be careful! This series can easily be read in a weekend! Thoroughly enjoyed this series and I’m eagerly awaiting the end of the trilogy!


Born and currently residing in Texas, Angela works as a nurse during the day and an author by night. She’s addicted to cleaning, coffee, and fuzzy socks. When not spending time with her husband and their three children, working or writing, she’s reading a good book or listening to music.

Author Links:

 

Buy Links:

Hope’s Decree: https://amzn.to/2Ig6V6j

Hope’s Deceit: https://amzn.to/2KFOx57

Hope’s Decree:

I couldn’t feel anything.

My whole freakish life I’d desperately wanted to shut out the surge of emotions I often felt from others. But this empty vacancy was out of place and wrong.

Off to my right, something flickered. I turned to look, and in the distance, a flash of light caught my attention. I watched, transfixed as it expanded and molded into the solid figure of a man. Curiosity or stupidity–not sure which–drew me toward him. With each step, my insides stirred, a desperate need beckoning me.

I made it close enough to see his coal black hair and broad shoulders before his image blurred and disappeared. Maybe I should have run, or at least tried, but an inexplicable force held me still. Now he stood behind me. I tensed as his massive arms wrapped around my waist.

His hold liberated my mind from the numbing loss of feelings, and fear pressed against me. Within him, profound fragments of greed and hate surged. But it was what those demented feelings led to that frightened me. A siege of war and bloodshed unlike the world has ever known.

Fear and terror spread through me like fire. I began to shake and my stomach rolled with nausea. His unbreakable hold suffocated the light inside of me and the darkness emerged.

Hope’s Deceit

Waking up every morning to Blain and his skillfully, mind-blowing kisses definitely made starting the day easier. Those lips

of his had a way of making me forget the outside world. His clean cotton and fresh-out-of-the-shower scent clung to him like static, and I couldn’t get enough. The feeling of comfort and safety while wrapped in his arms enveloped me, and the terrible images that startled me awake earlier faded away.

Melia being a Rogue and nearly killing me was frightening. But seeing the black orb attack Blain was a whole new level of terrifying. He seemed okay, though. God, I hoped he was okay.

Blain inched back, definitely far enough to see redness spread across my face, and grinned. His stare, the desire and need held there, made my pulse race. “God, you’re beautiful,” he said, stroking a thumb across my cheek.

His tender touch burned through me. The familiar buzz danced along my skin, and the colors from our power–white and gold– followed the sweet caress.

“This is my favorite part, the pink across your cheeks and knowing I put it there.”

I smiled. “Mine is definitely your lips.”

In turn, they kicked up in a sinful smile. The single butterfly in my stomach multiplied into a swarm. The clear blue in his eyes darkened, and he brought his mouth over mine.

Book Review, Books, Fiction, HEA, NetGalley, Romance, YA

Book Review: Playing Her Secret Crush ~ Casey Griffin

PLAYING HER SECRET CRUSH by Casey Griffin


Title: Playing Her Secret Crush
Author: Casey Griffin
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by: Shakera
Genre: Contemporary, YA
Publisher: Entangled: Crush
Date of Release: July 2, 2018
Pages: 270
Format: Kindle (Entangled Publishing)

Sometimes, there are words that are better left unsaid… This was totally not one of those times! Katie and Alex have had a crush on each other for quite some time. For good reasons, they never said anything. Now that senior year is here, it’s time to turn over a new leaf. Katie wants to be more outgoing and get a boyfriend, Alex wants a steady relationship. Can they overcome their own obstacles and get out of their own way?

What I loved is this book is every nerd’s dream! Who doesn’t love talking about gaming!? Both Katie and Alex are sweet and endearing, but at the same time, they do frustrate you as a reader. You know there are things they should say but don’t, but you also know and understand why. Their chemistry was great, even with the secondary characters. I would love a second book… if it’s written in the stars!

Book Review, Books, Fantasy, Fiction, NetGalley, Romance, Sci-fi, series, YA

Book Review: Bring Me Their Hearts ~ Sara Wolf

Bring Me Their Hearts
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Title: Bring Me Their Hearts (Book 1)
Author: Sara Wolf
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by: Shakera
Genre: Fantasy, Folklore, Sci-Fi, YA
Publisher: MacMillan
Date of Release: June 5, 2018
Pages: 400
Format: Paperback (Entangled Publishing)

When asked to not only do a cover reveal but a read and review, I had to jump at the chance!

One night, a group of bandits killed Zera’s parents and almost killed her until a witch, Nightsinger, saved her life by making her heartless… literally. Being a “heartless” isn’t too much different from being a zombie, except you still look human.  Now she is under the control of Nightsinger. Zera was made an offer she couldn’t refuse, bring me the heart of Crown Prince Lucien and I’ll give you your freedom… but fail, and your heart shall be crushed. Decisions, decisions!

I knew immediately I would love Zera! Who doesn’t love a sassy, smart-mouthed, strong young lady?! I appreciated her internal battle for her humanity. The relationship between Zera and Prince Lucien really worked for me. It felt like time was taken for them to get to know each other. The only issue I had with the book was the pacing… it was a bit slow for my liking, but still an enjoyable story. The cover is stunning, great storytelling, and I’m already excited for the next installment. I can’t wait!

Book Review, Books, Fantasy, Fiction, NetGalley, Sci-fi, series, YA

Book Review: The Marvelous Adventures of Gwendolyn Gray ~ B.A. Williamson

The Marvelous Adventures of Gwendolyn Gray
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Title: The Marvelous Adventures of Gwendolyn Gray
Author: B.A. Williamson
Rating: 4.5 Stars
Reviewed by: Shakera
Genre: Adventure, Fantasy, YA
Publisher: North Star Editions
Date of Release: May 15, 2018
Pages: 336
Format: Kindle (NetGalley)

In a world that is all black, white, and gray, things can become extremely boring! No one knows how that feels better than Gwendolyn Gray! She faces a very serious problem… she doesn’t think in black and white. She is the only person her age that doesn’t think the way everyone else does, and that leaves her as an outcast. As her parents and classmates continue to fall under the influence of the gray, dull society, Gwendolyn’s vivid imagination runs wild and naturally gets her in trouble. There are two faceless men who will stop at nothing to stop Gwendolyn from changing the world as they know it, including completely wiping cities off the map. Can Gwendolyn, with the help of two friends, stop the two faceless men and save everyone from a dull, gray existence?

This was the kind of book I read as a child! It is so awesome to read about a child having such a vivid imagination! There is something about a child using their imagination to save the world that is absolutely amazing. There are so many great things about this book: a narrator who acknowledges the readers and makes you feel as though you are a part of the story, Gwendolyn realizing she isn’t just some silly girl. There is a real power in your imagination. Stirling and Sparrow are great characters! The addition of siblings Stirling and Sparrow helped create the steampunk feel this book had. The story was great and I loved the small moments when the narrator would say, “I’ll spare you the boring details…”, “Sparrow said a few words that wouldn’t be polite to repeat…”. This might be a turn off for most, but I enjoyed it. The pacing was quite quick with world-building along the way, which was spectacularly done.

What was amazing about this story was the way it challenged the way stories/fairy tales are usually told. Normally it would start with “Once upon a time…”, but instead, it challenged you with “What if…?” Here’s to Gwendolyn Gray, for showing us it’s okay to stand out in a world where you were meant to blend it, for showing us it’s okay to use your imagination, and going against the norms… because being normal is overrated.

 

18+, Book Review, Books, Fantasy, Fiction, HEA, Romance, Sci-fi, YA

Book Review: A Million Junes ~ Emily Henry

Click cover to purchase


Title: A Million Junes
Author: Emily Henry
Rating: 5 Stars
Reviewed by: Shakera
Genre: Contemporary, Fantasy, Magical Realism, YA
Publisher: Razorbill
Date of Release: May 16, 2017
Pages: 350
Format: Kindle (First to Read)

This is a modern rendition of Romeo and Juliet with a twist. Do you believe what happens in the past can and will effect your future? What if what happened was generations before you were born? What if a misunderstand stood in your way of happiness, and it was a misunderstanding before you or your parents existed? This is what Jack (June) and Saul are facing, and they decide to face it head on!

This story requires you to use a bit of imagination. There’s a hint of magical realism, which is beautifully executed. Each character served a purpose, even if you didn’t understand what their purpose was in that exact moment. This story is witty, whimsical, and fun. The writing is superb in a way the author creates such a spellbinding world, characters, story, and you can’t help but to get caught up in the whirlwind that is Jack and Saul.

I will be completely honest with you, this book won’t be everyone’s cup of tea… and that’s okay! Read this book with an open mind and a bit of imagination, and you’ll love this book as much as I do. I thought this was absolutely fantastic.

Book Review, Books, Fantasy, Fiction, series, YA

Book Review: TruthStone ~ Mike Shelton

TruthStone
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Title: TruthStone (The TruthSeer Archives, Book 1)
Author: Mike Shelton
Rating: 5 Stars
Reviewed by: Shakera
Genre: Fantasy, YA
Publisher: Indie
Date of Release: February 15, 2018
Pages: 291
Format: Kindle (Mike Shelton via AXP)

We all know the sayings: “Thou shall not lie,” “The truth shall set you free,” and “A little lie never hurt anyone.” In this case, the truth is as dangerous as the lie… and a lie, even a tiny one, can be quite painful.

Fifteen year old, Shaeleen learns the unfortunate consequences when she becomes the TruthSeer. Every little lie, even half-truths, causes her pain. For centuries, the kingdom was protected and served by gemstones of power, each stone represented a different power. Now, those stones are failing. There is an challenge for the throne, but there are so many lies surrounding the throne, can Shaeleen save the throne AND survive? Or will she make the ultimate sacrifice? Travel with Shaeleen as she tours the kingdom, meeting new friends and foes along the way, as she learns what it means to be a TruthSeer.

What a whirlwind?! I was swept away from the very beginning. Shaeleen is a bright young lady with a good head on her shoulders. She’s put in a difficult position as she becomes the TruthSeer, and you start to see how often people lie. Even if the lie wasn’t outrageous, it was something as small as “I like your dress,” could easily have her doubled over in pain. Equally as bad, all the people who want your power. While having the TruthStone does make it easy to know who to trust, it’s not so easy when you have to match strength and sometimes wit. This story was well executed, and engaging. I truly enjoyed watching Shaeleen try to navigate her way around the truth and people who are following dark forces. I will definitely be staying tuned to see where this goes.