Category Archives: adult

Review: Grave Witch (Alex Craft #1) by Kalayna Price

Grave Witch by Kalayna Price
Publisher: RoC
Release date: October 5, 2010
Source: Purchased
Series: Alex Craft #1
Rating: Four stars!

I haven’t been reading books like this since I started blogging, mainly because they take me a little more time to finish than young adult books do. But I’ve decided I’m going to go back to reading these as well, because I’ve always enjoyed them, and Grave Witch was a breath of fresh air for me. I loved this book.

I was reading vampire books right before the publishing industry exploded with them. Once the shelves were over saturated with vampire novels, I got burnt out on the entire adult paranormal spectrum for a few years. Grave Witch was my reintroduction to Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance books, and I must say I’m now itching for more. Alex is a kick ass main character, strong and yet vulnerable. She’s quirky too, with her cute little dog, and a great sense of humor. Loyal as hell to those close to her.

The story itself is not groundbreaking at all, but each author brings their own ideas to the table and present it slightly different. I enjoyed the story very much despite it not being a fresh idea, because of how Kalayna Price writes it and makes it her own. And it never hurts when there’s not one sexy guy, but two involved. Though I know who I’m leaning towards. Though I don’t see how that relationship can work, but this fiction so that’s all right. I’m definitely looking forward to seeing where Alex is taken in the next book, especially after one of the guys drops the L word at a crucial time.

I’m definitely looking forward to digging into the next book. I recommend this to anyone who just wants something fun to read.

Review: The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
Publisher: Doubleday
Release date: September 13, 2011
Source: Purchased
Published format: Hardcover, 387 pages
Purchase: Book Depository

Summary from Goodreads:
The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night.

But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway—a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love—a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands.

True love or not, the game must play out, and the fates of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus per­formers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead.

Written in rich, seductive prose, this spell-casting novel is a feast for the senses and the heart.

I had seen this around on the blogosphere all of a sudden, read the summary and was immediately hooked. I had to have this book. So on the release day I went straight to my bookstore (The one that fails half the time with new releases I want and not having them), and OH MY GOD THEY HAD IT. I had to make sure I didn’t jump up and down squealing and looking like a crazy person. So I brought it home and just held it and stared at it. The Night Circus is a gorgeous book. Inside and out.

On to the review itself. This book was perfect. Enough said, end review. Haha, no not really. But honestly I love this book. I love the pacing, I love the atmosphere, I love the characters. The only thing I didn’t love was that there wasn’t quite as much romance between Marco and Celia in person. Most of it was them doing feats of magic for each other from long distance. Usually that would enchant me just as much as actual face time between characters, but this time it didn’t.

Pacing and atmosphere. I will say for those who aren’t very patient, the pacing for this is slow, even though it takes place over the course of nearly three decades. But the slow pace didn’t keep me from wanting to read this, it actually made me want to tear through it so I could know what happens next. Instead I forced myself to read it for four or five days so I could savor it. I don’t really know what to say about the atmosphere, I find it hard to explain. It’s obviously magical, and enchanting. I feel like this book is to me what the circus was to the rêveurs. Rêveurs by the way are circus goers who follow the circus in any way that they can. To get a hint of what the atmosphere is like I would suggest watching the book trailer for this, which I have posted a day or so ago.

There are so many characters in this story, but none get thrown to the curb. All the supporting cast have a rhyme and reason for why they are present, and they are each vital to the movement of the story. And they all feel like they are their own person, with no overlapping. My favorite secondary characters were Mr. Barris, the Burgess twins, and especially Friedrick Thiessen, the clockmaker.

I honestly don’t know what else to say to convey my absolute love of this book to you guys. It’s become my favorite read of 2011, but also my favorite read of all time. I’m lending this out to a few friends over the next few weeks, but as soon as I get it back I am rereading this. I recommend this to anyone who loves to read. I’m looking forward to the screen adaptation, though I’m nervous about the film doing justice to the book. We shall see! Go get yourself a copy of this ASAP, and hopefully you guys will enjoy it as much as I did!

The circus arrives without warning” 

Review: Storm Born Comic Book Issue #01 by Richelle Mead

Storm Born Comic #1 by Richelle Mead
Publisher: Sea Lion Books
Release date: May 25, 2011 (First volume Sept. 20, 2011)
Source: Publisher for an honest review
Format: Comic, 32 pages

Summary from Goodreads:

Eugenie Markham never asked for any of this. Until now, she”s been content with her job as a freelance shaman, battling and banishing Otherworldly creatures. When a prophecy suddenly makes her the Otherworld”s most popular bachelorette, Eugenie finds herself fighting off unwanted supernatural suitors, as well as the evils that begin emerging from her past…

Comic book adaptations of popular novels seems to be the rage these days. The Mercy Thompson series has one, and I know there are others out now, and even more coming out this year. I’ve never read one before today, but I was approached last week about reading this and thought I’d give it a try.

The main reason I did accept this request was because I have not read the series by Richelle Mead that this was based off of, so I wouldn’t be making comparisons about what might have been left out, or changed around, like what happens with movie adaptations. I came into this with a clean slate. And I’m glad I did, because the first issue of Storm Born makes me want to run out to my bookstore to see if they have the first book. Eugenie seems like a woman with a strong moral compass who is also badass and can hand it out when it’s needed. I’ll definitely be eager to see more of her in comic form.

Blog Tour Review: Glimmer by Vivi Anna


Glimmer by Vivi Anna
Publisher: Amazon Kindle
Release date: 2011
Source: Bewitching Book Tours
Rating: 4/5 stars – Really really liked it.
Cover comments: I love the cover. The colors, and the girl with wings. Definitely gives it a fae vibe.
Purchase: Amazon

Summary from Good Reads:
I posted the summary, along with the author’s bio yesterday. If you’d like to see them you can click here and it should open up in a new window.

My thoughts on Glimmer:
This was a fun fast paced story, with plenty of action and enough heat to make you blush. It grabbed me right at the beginning and refused to let go until the very end. I enjoyed this book very much. Nina is a kick-ass fae princess in denial of who she is, and this story beings the chronicle of her accepting who she is.

Now, fair warning, this is not a YA novel. Nina and Severin, the Alpha werewolf, have a hot, steamy encounter, so it is strongly suggested you be 18 years of age or older. It’s during this scene when Nina is forced to end her denial of what she is. It was moving along and and then we’re wrenched along in another direction. I for one felt unfulfilled because of this, but I’m sure that will be rectified in further installments. What I also loved was that it wasn’t until I was halfway through that the heated action appeared. In that regard, this story was a deviation from the normal romance formula of getting it on as soon as possible.

I’ll be very interested to learn the truth behind Nina’s mother’s motivations for leaving and staying away except for the rare visit, and for finally taking her father away, prompting Nina to find a way to Nightspell with Severin’s help. I’d also like to know more about the war between the fae and the werewolves, why they’re enemies, and what Nina’s part in the whole thing is.

The only thing I didn’t like was what happened in the very beginning. We’re given what is apparently a werewolf attack vicitim. The bait is dangled in front of us, but then thrown away once it’s served its purpose as the reason for Nina and Severin meeting. We don’t know who did it, or why it was done. Even if it wasn’t pertinant to the story as a whole, it would’ve been nice to have those small details.

Overall, definitely a great beginning to what will surely be an awesome paranomal series. I love anything to do with faeries, so I knew this would be right up my alley, and boy I definitely wasn’t wrong. I’m really looking forward to the next installment.

River Marked by Patricia Briggs

River Marked by Patricia Briggs
Publisher: Ace (Penguin Imprint)
Release Date: March 1, 2011
Source: Bought
Rating: 5/5 – Absolutely loved it
Cover Rating: 5/5 – Absolutely loved it

Summary From Good Reads:  

Car mechanic Mercy Thompson has always known there was something different about her, and not just the way she can make a VW engine sit up and beg. Mercy is a shapeshifter, a talent she inherited from her long-gone father. She’s never known any others of her kind. Until now.
 
An evil is stirring in the depths of the Columbia River-one that her father’s people may know something about. And to have any hope of surviving, Mercy and her mate, the Alpha werewolf Adam, will need their help…

My thoughts on River Marked:
This is my favorite of the Mercy Thompson series. And only because we finally learn more about what Mercy is and where she comes from. And that she is not the only one of her kind. The novel only spans a few days, and many characters that we see throughout the series were almost completely absent, which I didn’t like so much.

The Native American aspect in this book only piqued my interest in doing more research on my own, especially since I do have Native American ties in my family. I was glad to see Coyote, and the others, Raven, Thunderbird, Bear, Wolf. I look forward to seeing more of them in future installments. And I hope this won’t be the last we see of the walking stick, because I’ve grown rather fond of it.

Next up is the next installment of her Alpha and Omega series featuring Anna and Charles! Comes out January 2012, so far away!

Twilight’s Dawn by Anne Bishop

Twilight’s Dawn by Anne Bishop
Publisher: RoC (Penguin)
Release Date: March 1, 2011
Source: Bought
Rating: 5/5 – Absolutely loved it.
Cover Rating: 3/5 – It’s good.
Purchase: Amazon or Book Depository

Summary from the author’s website:
New York Times bestselling author Anne Bishop’s “darkly fascinating”* Black Jewel novels have enthralled readers and critics alike with their mixture of fantasy, intrigue, and romance.  Now in Twilight’s Dawn, Bishop returns to the Blood realm with four all-new captivating novellas.

Winsol Gifts

Daemon, the Black Jeweled Warlord Prince of Dhemlan, is settling into his first year of married life with his Witch Queen Jaenelle. But as the thirteen-day celebration of Winsol draws near, Daemon finds himself being pulled in too many directions as he plays host to his formidable family…

Shades of Honor

Still recovering from the ordeal that left her wounded and angry, Surreal returns to Ebon Rih on the orders of Prince Lucivar. And when her former lover Falonar ruthlessly challenges the rule of her family, Surreal may finally succumb to the darkness burning inside her…

Family

When someone lays a vicious trap for Queen Sylvia and her sons, the fallout completely disrupts the lives of the ruling family of Dhemlan. Now, they have to uncover the identity of the warlord known only as No Face, before he returns to finish what he started…

The High Lord’s Daughter

After losing the two most important people in his life, Daemon has assumed his father Saetan’s role as High Lord of Hell and built a wall around his heart. But when he inadvertently forges a new connection, will it be enough to break him free from his loveless life?

My thoughts on Twilight’s Dawn:
The latest installment of the Black Jewels series, and probably the last, was like a family reunion for me. Back to the characters I’ve known and loved for years. Never has a book pulled at my emotions so much. I laughed, I cried, I raged.

Each novella built on the one before it, and there was quite a bit of foreshadowing for the last novella, so I wasn’t surprised by how Anne Bishop ended it. And while I should’ve expected it, given that the blurb for The High Lord’s Daughter mentioned Daemon losing two people, I was still surprised about who the second person was, though I shouldn’t have been.

I liked the first novella, Winsol Gifts purely just because we see everyone just in every day situations, getting ready for the holidays. Shades of Honor was my favorite of the four, even though a certain character made me angry at how he could possibly think that way. Family was bittersweet, but reminds us that family is not always just about who you’re related to by blood. Family goes beyond that.

The last novella, there isn’t much I can say without spoiling it for those of you who have not read this book, or the rest of the series. The only complaint I have is that Daemon and Surreal, especially Surreal, felt different. Not quite themselves. And with all the foreshadowing in this book, I was not surprised by how Anne Bishop chose to end this. It even makes sense, when you look at the series as a whole. While this felt like the end, it felt left open. Like Anne Bishop could come back to this someday and expand on the new direction the characters take.

A word of warning to long time Black Jewels fans: I’ve seen a lot of negative reviews, fans feeling betrayed, because of the last novella. I will not spoil anyone here, so you’re free to find the spoilers on your own, but I really think you should give Twilight’s Dawn a fair chance. Because this is the author’s world, not ours. She chooses how it ends. And I for one can respect that.