Courting Darkness by Robin LaFevers

BLURB~

“First in a duology, this darkly thrilling page-turner set in the world of the best-selling His Fair Assassin series is perfect for fans of THRONE OF GLASS, RED QUEEN, and GAME OF THRONES. Told in alternating perspectives, when Sybella discovers there is another trained assassin from St. Mortain’s convent deep undercover in the French court, she must use every skill in her arsenal to navigate the deadly royal politics and find her sister in arms before her time—and that of the newly crowned queen—runs out. 

When Sybella accompanies the Duchess to France, she expects trouble, but she isn’t expecting a deadly trap. Surrounded by enemies both known and unknown, Sybella searches for the undercover assassins from the convent of St. Mortain who were placed in the French court years ago.

Genevieve has been undercover for so many years, she no longer knows who she is or what she’s supposed to be fighting for. When she discovers a hidden prisoner who may be of importance, she takes matters into her own hands.
 
As these two worlds collide, the fate of the Duchess, Brittany, and everything Sybella and Genevieve have come to love hangs in the balance.”

Review~

I hadn’t realized this was a spin-off from a previous trilogy, “His Farr Assassin” until after I’d read this book. I will say it can be understood without having read the trilogy prior, but I AM going to read that series. I am certain it will link back enough to add to this novel. “Courting Darkness” is the first in a duology and I can hardly wait for the next installment!

To me, it seems to be a dark fantasy set within almost-historical fiction. It also has a delicious blend of political intrigue, suspense, and romance. (There is some writing with LGTB characters.) One thing I love best: a strong and bad A female MC. In fact, this book gives us two. This story was wonderful to read.

The quality of writing is masterful. The La Fevers has an intuitive ability to write with detail and description effortlessly. You become immersed in French Court and fearful for the MCs as they traverse their ways through the precarious, very true to life scenes. The author keeps you dangling with this one. Even if delighted from cover to cover.

The characters were constructed in such a way that, even though you know and understand their flaws, you find yourself cheering them on. All of the main players felt genuine and robust despite their misgivings. I love how the author used her superior skills to forge a world in which the reader could see and feel come alive! Robin’s acumen for telling a story is apparent throughout the book.

This was such a relishable novel to read. It was easy to follow, even without having read the previous trilogy. I just wish I had waited to read it until it was closer to time for the next one to be released. Highly recommended with 5/5 stars!

I was given this book by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

This review, or portions thereof, will be posted (when able) on Amazon, B&N, Goodreads, Kobo, IG, FB, Pinterest, Litsy, and my own blog.

Unfortunately, I am unable to provide links to all sites as I am using my phone.

On various sites I am:

Pinterest~ Pinterest.com/katskraps

Barnes & Noble~ Karyl-Ahn-white_7

Litsy~ Karylahn or Karyl White

Enchantee by Gita Trelease

 BLURB~

Paris is a labyrinth of twisted streets filled with beggars and thieves, revolutionaries and magicians. Camille Durbonne is one of them. She wishes she weren’t…

When smallpox kills her parents, Camille must find a way to provide for her younger sister while managing her volatile brother. Relying on magic, Camille painstakingly transforms scraps of metal into money to buy food and medicine they need. But when the coins won’t hold their shape and her brother disappears with the family’s savings, Camille pursues a richer, more dangerous mark: the glittering court of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette.

Using dark magic forbidden by her mother, Camille transforms herself into a baroness and is swept up into life at the Palace of Versailles, where aristocrats both fear and hunger for magic. As she struggles to reconcile her resentment of the rich with the allure of glamour and excess, Camille meets a handsome young inventor, and begins to believe that love and liberty may both be possible.

But magic has its costs, and soon Camille loses control of her secrets. And when revolution erupts, Camille must choose—love or loyalty, democracy or aristocracy, reality of magic—before Paris burns.”

 

REVIEW~

 

This historical fiction book is escapism at it’s best! Set in the French Revolution during the early 1790s, this author has managed to capture in writing, what French court must have been like. In college, I‘ve studied the French Revolution with a fair amount of depth and Trelease has succeeded, IMHO, to bring realism to her creativity and has obviously done her research. Historical facts, people (Marie Antoinette, King Louis, and other nobles), and occurrences are interwoven with her story of fantasy and magic. For me, it was such an original piece, and the book was written so very well that I was immersed in it. I didn’t want to stop reading to participate in that intrusive thing they call “real life.” I will admit, that I did have to look up the meaning of some words, but it was not detracting. I wanted to stay within the rich and atmospheric world Gita has given to us through this book. Was this a debut??? Surely, not!

 

The author’s expertise with “the pen” is noted throughout the book. So descriptive and striking, the paranormal was brought in so very adeptly, that it almost seemed a true normality and not at all whimsical. The superb word-building and dedication to the period was absolutely entrancing. Yes, this story has magic, forbidden and ostracized by society, but it also has heart, struggle, intrigue, and sedition. The MC, Camille is a pariah by simply her existing.

 

Speaking of Camille, and the other characters- Sophie, Alain, Lazare, and (OH MY GOSH) our villain, Viconte Seguin! They are adroitly penned and wonderfully captivating. I have to say that the inner struggle Camille goes through is felt profoundly by the reader, and though she makes some poor decisions, you find that you actually empathize with her. She and Lazare are both such a complicated and endearing characters. One of my favorite characters, however, was Viconte Seguin. (hmmmm, what does that say about me?) He was a perfect antagonist in this novel and his presence was brilliantly placed. He was such a, dare I say, gratifying villain?

 

The pacing of the book was sheer genius on Trelease’s part. The building tension of the characters and the revolution- it was all timed so well. This story captures you and you are victim to the author’s imagination throughout the entirety of the tale. (Or is it true?) I digress. I am in love with this book; I can’t deny it. I will gobble up everything this author writes just as if it were the cake Marie said to let the peasants eat.

 

Delightful and engrossing, Enchantee is a clever and immensely enjoyable story. I would very highly recommend this book to any historical fiction/fantasy fan. 5/5 stars from this reader.

I was given this book by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

This review, or portions thereof, will be posted (when able) on Amazon, B&N, Goodreads, Kobo, IG, FB, Pinterest, Litsy, and my own blog.

Unfortunately, I am unable to provide links to all sites as I am using my phone.

On various sites I am:

Pinterest~ Pinterest.com/katskraps

Barnes & Noble~ Karyl-Ahn-white_7

Litsy~ Karylahn or Karyl White

Fallen Mountains by Kimi Cunningham Grant

BLURB~

When Transom Shultz goes missing shortly after returning to his tightly knit hometown of Fallen Mountains, Pennsylvania, his secrets are not the only ones that threaten to emerge. 
 
Something terrible happened seventeen years ago. Red, the sheriff, is haunted by it. Possum, the victim of that crime, wants revenge. Chase, a former friend of Transom’s, is devastated by his treacherous land dealings. And Laney worries her one thoughtless mistake with Transom could shatter everything she’s built.
 
As the search for Transom heats up and the inhabitants’ dark and tangled histories unfold, each must decide whether to live under the brutal weight of the past or try to move beyond it. In Fallen Mountains, even loyalty, love, trust, and family can trap you on a path of tragedy.”

REVIEW~

I live in a town called Cowpens. No joke. So I know small towns and Grant has done a superb job at giving readers a pretty good idea what life is like living in one. The story is told in parts of BEFORE and AFTER Transom’s disappearance. It was an easy to follow and not confusing at all. The quality of her writing is amazing. I would venture to say flawless. Grant spins a tale so realistically, I was blown away. She has a gripping style of drawing you into the story, the characters, and the secrets.

Perfectly paced, she gradually introduces the characters with an approach that connects you to them and each individual arc. You get to know these characters and their backstories in such a way that you feel attached to them. They are flawed, with both favorable and erroneous characteristics, that are realistically portrayed.

Perplexing at times, because there are so many suspects, the plot is one of mystery, suspense, and intrigue. You are kept suspense until the very satisfying end. I read this book and if life hadn’t have gotten in the way I would’ve read it one sitting. It is utterly fascinating. Grant has masterfully developed a novel that will keep the reader wondering and guessing until the conclusion. 5/5

Kingdom of Needle and Bone by Mira Grant

BLURB~

“We live in an age of wonders. Modern medicine has conquered or contained many of the diseases that used to carry children away before their time, reducing mortality and improving health. Vaccination and treatment are widely available, not held in reserve for the chosen few. There are still monsters left to fight, but the old ones, the simple ones, trouble us no more. Or so we thought. For with the reduction in danger comes the erosion of memory, as pandemics fade from memory into story into fairy tale. Those old diseases can’t have been so bad, people say, or we wouldn’t be here to talk about them. They don’t matter. They’re never coming back. How wrong we could be. It begins with a fever. By the time the spots appear, it’s too late: Morris’s disease is loose on the world, and the bodies of the dead begin to pile high in the streets. When its terrible side consequences for the survivors become clear, something must be done, or the dying will never stop. For Dr. Isabella Gauley, whose niece was the first confirmed victim, the route forward is neither clear nor strictly ethical, but it may be the only way to save a world already in crisis. It may be the only way to atone for her part in everything that s happened. She will never be forgiven, not by herself, and not by anyone else. But she can, perhaps, do the right thing. We live in an age of monsters.”

REVIEW~

Oh MY GOSH! That cover! This would be a total cover buy for me. I wouldn’t even read the synopsis. Truly. I’d pick this one up, drop it in the basket, and be on my merry way. This is an …a… I don’t even know what to say. Is there a better word for amazing? It’s a short, but extremely powerful and thought-provoking book. I can’t even begin to explain the complexities of this novel (novella maybe- it is short- only about 130 pages.) But it packs a punch! Right in your gut and in your sense of what you think you’d do in a similar, and may I say, plausible situation.

You have to know that I have been a registered nurse for nearly 10 years, and this story’s plot is within a medical setting. Naturally, I am watching for mistakes. There aren’t any, as far as I could tell. The author did a wonderful job of ensuring that. She is an extremely talented writer with nearly flawless word building skills. She writes in such an evocative way it leaves you stunned.

The basis of the story was exceptional and fascinating. This is an inimitable but convincing tale that draws upon our fears and makes you wonder just how far you’d go to ‘do the right thing.” Just so brilliant. From beginning to end, this book was unwaveringly intense. The ending will catch you so off guard. What a shocker! I read this book in a matter of a few hours and was enthralled the entire time.

The characters were so real. Grant has written them so thoroughly. Their humanity and the array of situations and emotions they go through are just magnificent. I can’t speak highly enough about this character development. These characters feel authentic, like people you could know in reality.

This was a short and splendid read. It is provocative, but easy to read. I highly recommend this to all sci-fi/ medical mystery lovers. 5/5 stars.

I was given this book by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

This review, or portions thereof, will be posted (when able) on Amazon, B&N, Goodreads, Kobo, IG, FB, Pinterest, Litsy, and my own blog.

Unfortunately, I am unable to provide links to all sites as I am using my phone.

On various sites I am:

Pinterest~ Pinterest.com/katskraps

Barnes & Noble~ Karyl-Ahn-white_7

Litsy~ Karylahn or Karyl White

 

All That Wil Burn by Judd Mercer

BLURB~

From the ashes, a legend will rise. Amidst an eternal war between good and evil, headstrong Sofia explores the afterlife in search of her lost past in this illustrated dark fantasy epic. . . . Washed ashore on a desolate beach, Sofia arrives in the afterlife with no memories—only nightmares, and a darkness within her she cannot explain. As Sofia wanders the timeless world of the Orvida in search of answers, she discovers it is no eternal of paradise. Within the shadows of sprawling vistas amass the imuertes, the lost souls of the damned. After a chance encounter with the Ebrahym, a mysterious, winged Sanguinir warrior, Sofia is drawn into a conflict a millennium in the making. Now, caught between the wary eye of the angelic Host, and the growing threat of the imuertes driven to war by a newly ascended lord, Sofia must find the strength to face the enemy at the gates—and the demons that lurk within.”

REVIEW~

All I can say is that this book is nothing short of amazing. Epic? Absolutely! It is not your typical dark fantasy. Set in the afterlife, our protagonist, Sofia, traverses between good and evil in a story arc that takes her, and the reader, through a midst of emotions. I felt her longing to find answers, her fear, her expectations and wishes. She was truly a dynamic and perplexing MC. I loved her internal struggles and the development of her character!

I am getting ahead of myself. I am just so excited about this novel. The word building and quality of writing is wonderful. The author paints pictures of worlds, both literally and figuratively, that you can become submersed in. There is a talent here that is solid and the author is truly gifted.

The pacing was consistent and cogent. In fact, it was perfect and time elapsed quickly as I read. I hate cliché terms but I literally could not put this book down. (I burned dinner because of it.) The characters were so vivid and convincing, I believe this may be a new favorite book for me. I can hardly wait to read more from this author.

I could go on and on about the premise of the book, but the blurb surmises it well.  The plotline is uncommon and exceptionally cultivated. The afterlife presented is sui generis and unexpected. It is good vs evil, but so much more. It explores the journey of Sofia from lost and unsure, to confidant and assertive.

I’ve already touched on the character development, which was phenomenal, IMHO. Thusly, suffice it to say that the characters were quite detailed. The setting was rich and spectacular. The author’s watercolor illustrations lend themselves well to the telling of the tale. And they are beautiful!

This was escapism at it’s best and such a joy to read. The subject matter, though caliginous, was so intriguing that I found myself visualizing and speculating myself, what it must be like. This story took the MC and the reader on a journey and it was brilliant.

5/5 stars for this imaginative and unorthodox novel.

I was given this book by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

This review, or portions thereof, will be posted (when able) on Amazon, B&N, Goodreads, Kobo, IG, FB, Pinterest, Litsy, and my own blog.

Unfortunately, I am unable to provide links to all sites as I am using my phone.

On various sites I am:

Pinterest~ Pinterest.com/katskraps

Barnes & Noble~ Karyl-Ahn-white_7

Litsy~ Karylahn or Karyl White

Boundary by Victoria Johnson

BLURB~

“Never try to open the locked doors. Never question what you are told. And never attempt to cross the Boundary. Kept inside an eerie estate for their entire lives, Penny and her five friends have had no contact with the outside world, with their only windows being a handful of books, a sinister master and a secretive housekeeper. Fed up of living a mystery, Penny begins breaking all the rules and finally tries to escape; but what she uncovers is far more devastating than she could have imagined. It rapidly becomes a deadly struggle for the truth in a world where nothing is what it seems, and friendship can be either your greatest weapon…or your biggest liability.”

REVIEW~

The premise of this book was very intriguing. It is the first in The Other Horizons Trilogy. I don’t want to give too much away, so suffice it to say the blurb does a good job of reeling you in and letting you know the basic plot outline. I am not sure the cover does the story justice. I would probably have looked this book over, but it is quite an interesting read.

The writer uses very descriptive language throughout the story.  You can become immersed even in the mundane experience of the youth’s lives in the manor and their feelings.  There were a few typos but none distracting enough to keep my mind wandering from the plot. The plot, by the way, was very thought out and it drew me in almost immediately.  The mystery and suspense were great.

The characters were endearing and compelling though they seemed a bit younger than 15. I attribute this to their sheltered life. The menacing manor master was portrayed very well, as were the cook/nanny, Ms. Beatrix. I like the characters and became engulfed in the story when the action really got going.

It was an easy and enjoyable read that I was able to finish in a day, off & on. I found that when I left it to go attend to a chore, I wanted to get back to it. I am looking forward to the next book to see what happens and how some things wrap up and some questions can be answered. The author certainly has a talent for mystery and suspense writing as she leads you right to a point where you want to continue with the books.

Definitely worth the read. I would recommend it to younger audiences as well. The writing is not so that it would be “above their heads” and there aren’t any naughty scenes or anything like that. I could actually see it being made into a film. Overall, I will give this book a 4.75.

I was given this book by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

This review, or portions thereof, will be posted (when able) on Amazon, B&N, Goodreads, Kobo, IG, FB, Pinterest, Litsy, and my own blog.

Unfortunately, I am unable to provide links to all sites as I am using my phone.

On various sites I am:

Pinterest~ Pinterest.com/katskraps

Barnes & Noble~ Karyl-Ahn-white_7

Litsy~ Karylahn or Karyl White

 

Phoenix Rising: Anunnaki Wars by C S Wade

BLURB~

“Aidan a Murian prince awakens from a fiery crash in an unknown time. His people legends fading into the mist of time. Long forgotten. After an eon of hiding in the shadows sinister enemies from his past once more come forth spreading chaos as they pit empire against empire precipitating war and chaos across the galaxy. He discovers the oldest race in the galaxy betrayed by one they trusted. Whispers of foul deeds and unspeakable acts proliferates as death spills across battlefield’s. Rider merchants impressed to the gargantuan deepspace creatures called Solar Sailors carry news of the unrest to the Council of Nine and High Temple as they travel the great energy currents delivering goods and news. Ghost walkers, Temple warriors, powerful and mysterious are sent to investigate and discover an elusive, and savage enemy. At the center of the whirlwind is a battle for control of the Anunnaki Empire. Blood will flow as the wrath of war rises. Into this anarchy a young queen, her consort, and two powerful brothers fight for the very survival of their people, forced to sacrifice for love, house, and empire. Now the future of the galaxy rest upon two lost souls. How can an ancient prince, and an untried Queen hope to triumph over one of the most insidious forces the galaxy has seen since the time of powerful and long dead Phoenix Queens. Full of mystery, intrigue, romance, and adventure. The rise and fall of powerful alliances fill the pages of this magnificent saga, Anunnaki Wars an epic series sure to delight Science Fiction/Ancient Aliens fans everywhere.”

REVIEW~

Hmmmmm… I am not certain how to review this book. The story itself is very interesting, but there were a lot of typos and grammatical errors that distracted me, as can be noted in the blurb alone. I found myself beta reading more than enjoying the story at first. I was still able to be drawn in, however, and I feel that with some editing, it could really be a wonderful fantasy/sci-fi read. What the blurb doesn’t tell you is that the story is about how a warrior princess/new, young queen and her two brothers are fighting to protect their family and society against an enemy that seems indomitable.  

The writer is very imaginative, and the premise of the novel is enrapturing, despite the errors. It sends readers through space and time to fascinating new galaxies. Wade has crafted a world full of depth. The writing style is very descriptive and dynamic. From the very beginning, the book is full of action and continues to be quickly paced till the very end. The plot is intricate and detailed, which allowed me to overlook the poor editing. The characters were easily visualized and developed. I found the tale intriguing and would like to read the sequel.

Because of the poor editing, I am going to give this book 3.5/5. It’s saving grace is that the characters are vivid, the basis of the story is captivating, and the author’s fresh and imaginative tale is truly enticing.

I was given this book by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

This review, or portions thereof, will be posted (when able) on Amazon, B&N, Goodreads, Kobo, IG, FB, Pinterest, Litsy, and my own blog.

Unfortunately, I am unable to provide links to all sites as I am using my phone.

On various sites I am:

Pinterest~ Pinterest.com/katskraps

Barnes & Noble~ Karyl-Ahn-white_7

Litsy~ Karylahn or Karyl White

The Hangman’s Secret: A Victorian Mystery (Victorian Mysteries #3) by Laura Joh Rowland

BLURB~

From award-winning author Laura Joh Rowland, a story about the darkness that lurks within and the deadly secrets that beg to be revealed.
Intrepid photographer Sarah Bain and her motley crew of friends are back to hunt criminals in the dark, seedy underbelly of Victorian London, but little do they know, the darkness may lurk closer than they first divined.
Photographer Sarah Bain and her friends Lord Hugh Staunton and sometime street urchin Mick O’Reilly are private detectives with a new gig―photographing crime scenes for London’s Daily World newspaper. The Daily World is the latest business venture of their sole client, Sir Gerald Mariner, a fabulously wealthy and powerful banker. 
One cold, snowy January morning, Sarah, Hugh, and Mick are summoned to the goriest crime scene they’ve ever encountered. A pub owner named Harry Warbrick has been found hanged and decapitated amid evidence of foul play. His murder becomes a sensation because he was England’s top hangman and he’s met the same fate that he inflicted on hundreds of criminals.Sir Gerald announces that the Daily World―meaning Sarah and her friends―will investigate and solve Harry Warbrick’s murder before the police do. The contest pits Sarah against the man she loves, Police Constable Barrett. She and her friends discover a connection between Harry Warbrick’s murder and the most notorious criminal he ever executed―Amelia Carlisle, the “Baby-Butcher,” who murdered hundreds of infants placed in her care. 
REVIEW~

This book is the third in the Victorian Mysteries series but can certainly be read as a standalone. It is told from the perspective of our protagonist, Sarah Bain. A scrappy and independent gal, which was uncommon in such times. I really liked her character.

I must say I found this to be an intriguing premise for a novel. The author’s writing style has quality. She is efficient at providing background information that helps readers that haven’t read the first two books, to understand what is going on. The characters play well off one another and each has their individual roles in the story. Each also has their own troubles, which enliven and enrich the tale.

The characters were fascinating and likeable. An unlikely group of friends who are amateur sleuths, each having their own backstories that add more to the tale. There is suspense, mystery, romance-all set in 18990s London. Each of the characters add to the story and make it an enjoyable read. It is a page turner that had me guessing till the very end, and what an ending it was! I had no clue who the killer was, although I had suspicions throughout the story. There are many to be suspicious of. SO many suspects., but each is ruled out. Just as Sarah gets closer to solving the mystery, she finds herself in more imminent danger.

The book was paced quite well. A steady stream of action and introduction of characters helped the narrative to flow easily. This was an enjoyable read. An intense mystery, though it was a light read for me. It was engaging and entertaining. I plan to read the first two in the series so that I can get to know the characters better since they are all so interesting.

The only criticism I have, is the verbalizations between the characters didn’t seem to fit well given the time period. The conversations and verbiage used seemed more modern. This, I feel, was an oversight that could not be ignored given the fact that otherwise, everything seemed so authentic. SO, I am giving it a 4/5 stars. 

All in all, it is a book that I enjoyed and enough so that I will surely read more of her work. I would also recommend this book despite my one misgiving. 

I was given this book by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

The Curses by Laura Eve – A Graces Novel

Blurb~

“Picking up the pieces after the chilling events of the previous year isn’t easy, but the Grace siblings are determined. Wolf is back after a mysterious disappearance, and everyone’s eager to return to normal. Except Summer, the youngest Grace. Summer has a knack for discovering the truth—and something is troubling her. But exposing secrets is a dangerous game, and it’s not one Summer can win alone. At Summer’s behest, the coven comes back together, drawing their erstwhile friend River back into the fold. But as the coven’s powers magnify, Wolf’s behavior becomes unpredictable—and Summer must question the nature of the friend she so loves. This riveting sequel to The Graces is saturated with magic, the destructive cost of power, and the nature of forgiveness.      

My Review~

“Ok, The Curses is not a stand-alone. Once again, I requested a book because the cover was so awesome! Not realizing it was part of a trilogy, I had to check out The Graces from the library before I could read this. JIC you’ve not read it already, I think the following review by: rhapsodyinbooks provides a good synopsis of The Graces without giving away spoilers, so I’ve included it here (with permission) so you can get the gist before reading my review of The Curses. From: rhapsodyinbooks.wordpress.com

“The Grapes are a family with rumored magical powers who draw everyone into their orbit and punish those they don’t like. Despite the risk however, “everyone in this town was in love with a Grace.” Summer Grace is 15, and twins Fenrin and Thalia are 17. All the girls at school try (unsuccessfully) to imitate the ethereal beauty of Thalia, and all of them are in love with Fenrin, “more creature than boy.” When River Page, 15, transfers into their school, she becomes fascinated with the Graces along with everyone else. She manages to become friends with Summer, who is in her grade. Through Summer, River also gets to know Fenrin and Thalia as well, even getting invited to the Grace house and to Grace parties, something no one else has managed to do. But River has secrets of her own, and soon the four of them get entangled in a situation that it seems even magic can’t fix. Or can it?

Evaluation: This is a book about magic, witches, coming of age, first love, and even the biggest hellscape of all: The High School Cafeteria! But in my opinion, the two biggest draws to this book are the fae aspect of the Grace family, and the excellent set of twists the author has woven into the plot. It reminded me in that way of the book We Were Liars. I think this will be very successful in the young adult market.”

Kinda get it now, right?

Okay, on with MY review of The Curses. This is pretty much a new favorite series for me. I was excited to read this one. Eve is a very good writer and lucky me- I got to read them back to back. The third is already on Amazon so YAY! I feel like Eve really captures the sense of Pagan witches in modern society and how they are so harshly judged, and outsiders are suspicious of them. She put a twist on this book by changing the character POV to Summer, the youngest Grace sibling. This allowed you to see things through a different lens, so to speak. Eve has a special talent for drawing you in to the story. It has magical and fantasy elements of course, but also has a bit of mystery and suspense.

 The story is fast paced, to me, for this type of novel. Things happen like waves, fast and almost drowning, but then the group uses powers to afront any wrongs or difficulties.  I couldn’t quite figure out exactly WHO was the “bad guy.”

This book is a page turner. Entrancing and engaging, I found it hard to put down and was engrossed in the story from the beginning of The Graces. I really like the family history aspect of the story. It adds dimension and gives a unique facet to the narrative.

The character development was solid. The siblings have a strong bond and stick together through thick and thin. And they go through a LOT in this book. Eve has written them to be resourceful and resilient, however, and you are pulled in by them as well. You get a better sense of their personalities in this book, especially Summer’s. Providing some background to the family in general, the reader feels a realistic dynamic between the brother and sisters.  The author has created characters that the reader can sympathize with.

The Curses was an easy and enjoyable read. There was an unexpected sort of shocker ending, and though somewhat sad, the reader is left hopeful. I will be glad to read the third in this trilogy and have everything tied up in a nice little bow.  I rate this book a 5/5 stars and am looking forward to adding the physical copies to my bookshelf.

I received this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for and honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

A Bound Woman is a Dangerous Thing by DaMaris Hill -The incarceration of African American Women from Harriet Tubman to Sandra Bland

This is going to be a different sort of review for me. It is a different kind of book than what I usually read.

I used to think I “had some color” in my family history line, so I have always been interested in the plight of African American women in history. I recently discovered I am completely white/caucasian- whatever term you’d choose. But I still find myself drawn to this sort of book and history. That being said, I don’t think I will ever understand the true legacy of these amazing women.

This book is so inspiring! Not just for women of color, but for all women. It is evocative and emotional. Empowering and enlightening. This book is one EVERY person should read, IMHO.

The poetry is phenomenal! I cannot even begin to convey the author’s talent for tugging at your heartstrings and making you REALLY THINK. If you can only try to imagine life from these exceptional ladies’ perspective, you will be forever altered.

I am unable to explain the visceral response I had while reading some of this poetry and prose. I was incensed, enraged, encouraged. In short, I was deeply moved.

This is a different sort of review because I have rarely been so deeply moved by an author’s work in such a way as this.

I don’t know what else to say.

Triumphant! I am in awe. 5/5 stars

I was given this book by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

This review, or portions thereof, with be posted (when able) to Amazon, Goodreads, B&N, IG, Pinterest, FB, Litsy, Kobo, BAM, and my own blog.

Unfortunately I am unable to provide all links at this time as I am using my phone.