Sunday, February 22, 2015

Days of Blood & Starlight


**Book 1**

Oh, book two in this trilogy was just as enthralling as book one was.

At the end of Daughter of Smoke & Bone, Karou finally learns who she is - a reincarnated demon. Brimstone saved her, even though she was killed for treason. Her former self was killed for falling in love with Akiva. Yes, their souls met through all of that. Brimstone saved her soul and placed it into a human infant body. He created a new her.

Karou wants to keep loving Akiva, but he shared a horrible story - all of her people are dead and he's the one who killed them.

So now Karou has sworn to never love Akiva again, and she is determined to avenge all of the demons who were killed by the angels. Of course, that ends with her being allied with someone who should be on her side but is beyond untrustworthy.

But Karou begins doing Brimstone's work anyway.

It's a much darker book than the first. The first book has a lightheartedness that is vanquished in this book. This is a war and death book.

But that ending. It has me wanting this third book now! I hope to read it soon because this series has been amazing so far.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

The Accidental Demon Hunter


I genuinely enjoy getting books through BookBub, because I get introduced to different books that I would never have found otherwise. This was one of those books.

It's not an amazing book by any means, but it has an interesting story that makes me interested enough to give more of the series a chance.

Lizzie has spent the first 30 years of her life believing she was just a normal woman. She was adopted into a admittedly kind of boring family. She has a job at a preschool. She likes to schedule everything. She even has an adorable little dog. So, when her biological grandmother wants to meet her right before her 30th birthday, she's got a few reservations.

What she doesn't expect is for her grandmother to ride up on a Harley, wearing leather, and then locking Lizzie in her own bathroom.

Lizzie isn't a normal woman. She's a witch. She's not just a normal witch though. She's a demon hunter, a witch who is born once a generation to protect the coven from the legions of hell. And there's a big demon that she's being forced to fight.

Then she meets Dimitri, who is her protector - or is he? His character is called into question right up to the end. Especially after Lizzie's grandmother is taken by the big demon who wants to wipe out all the witch covens and Dimitri is the only one that Lizzie thinks she can trust.

It's a cute little book with some supernatural shenanigans. I look forward to reading the next book and determining my feelings on the series then.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Daughter of Smoke & Bone


What an interesting first book in a trilogy. It really pulled me in and made me want more.

Karou is an unusual girl. She has bright blue hair that grows that way. She is an art student with sketchbooks full of monsters. All her friends enjoy her stories about these monsters, thinking them just fiction. Except they're not. These monsters are real and the only family that Karou has.

The only life that Karou has known has been with Brimstone, her father for all intents and purposes. As she grew up, she began helping him with his business, even though she really does not understand what he does. All she knows is that she runs errands, meets with some rather unsavory characters, and collects teeth from Brimstone to work with.

While on one of these errands, she notices a hand-print burned into the doorway back to Brimstone's shop. Then it shows up again on another door. In Marrakesh, she comes face to face with Akiva, an angel. They come to blows, but what comes next is unexpected.

Karou and Akiva began a romance that can not be. But Karou's past, the void she has always felt in her life, lies with this angel and with Brimstone. But will Karou be able to handle the secret that has been kept from her for her whole life?

I really did enjoy this book. It ended with a teaser that made me want to read the next book.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Eternity


This was such an amazing discovery for me. I'm kind of a sucker for the whole paranormal romance genre. I don't really know why. But this was such a good book and it's a series, so I'll have to read the rest of the series at some point.

Raven St. James is a witch in the 1600s. She and her mother get accused (rightly so) of witchcraft because the town is suffering from a plague (not their fault). So the two women are sentenced to hang. And they do. But there's something special about Raven that she discovers after her hanging. She's an Immortal witch.

I guess these are a special kind of witch who have died in a previous lifetime trying to save the life of a witch. So Raven is immortal, but there's a man who is fascinated with her. Duncan Wallace. Their paths cross several times. He tries to save her from hanging and is forced to watch her die.

While the first half of this story takes place in the late 1600s, the second half takes place 300 years later with Raven waiting for her love to be reborn as an Immortal Witch like herself. Because 300 years earlier, Duncan died trying to save her when the townspeople threw her off a cliff.

Oh, and someone is trying to kill her and steal her heart to take her power and life force. So there's some intrigue, some romance, and a little bit of magic. The magic really isn't the primary part here, but it is who the characters are.

I'm kind of excited to read the rest of this series.

Of Mice and Men


I feel like this will not be a popular opinion of this classic novel, but, well, I only kind of liked this book. I don't know why. I doubt one of those reasons was because it was short. The copy I had was a whopping 107 pages long.

I just didn't connect to the characters. I've read this book before, years ago, but I was in high school and as a result, well, not very good at subconsciously analyzing books. But now I am. And these characters just do not seem to have any depth.

I know why it's a classic. The themes, while a little hard to really grasp, are themes that can withstand the test of time. The keeping of someone who is difficult. The idea that accidents happen. But those characters. I just don't know about them.

Lennie is a character that you can feel kind of bad for. I mean, he's a little dumb. He's got the mind of a child, but the strength of a full grown man (and then some). He tends to kill little creatures because he doesn't really know his own strength.

George is, well, kind of cold hearted. He seems to only tolerate Lennie's presence. He travels with Lennie out of a sense of obligation, not because he wants to. Lennie is devoted to George and George just doesn't seem to care that much. It's kind of sad.

Most of the characters are rather flat, but it's not a terrible book. I read and somewhat enjoyed it. But I am glad that it was a short book.

Monday, February 9, 2015

The Fault in Our Stars


I liked this book. A lot. I wouldn't go so far as to say it was amazing, but it was definitely a good book. Probably helps that I finished it in like two days. But I think there was just something that was preventing me from saying that I loved the book and that it was the most amazing piece of fiction that I had read.

Hazel has cancer. Like, badly has cancer. So I went into this expecting it to be, well, a cancer kid book. I wasn't terribly wrong about that. It was a cancer kid book. But I appreciated the fact that it wasn't filled with "poor me, I have cancer, I wish I'd just die" kind of sentiments. In fact, it was a little more real than that.

Augustus kind of rubbed me the wrong way for most of the book. Something about him irked me no matter how hard I tried to like him. I honestly kind of preferred Isaac the blind kid. He went through the anger I kept expecting Hazel and Augustus to display.

It's really a kind of cute little love story with a side of tragedy tacked on. I know everyone said it was so sad and they cried like crazy, but I honestly cried a couple of tears in this book compared to the river of sobs I've had for other books.

So, while I liked the book and I can understand all it's hype, I kind of think I'd prefer something that's not over hyped like this book was.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Written in My Own Heart's Blood


**Book 1 * Book 2 * Book 3 * Book 4 * Book 5 * Book 6 * Book 7**

Ok. Seriously. I love this series. But, I'm going to tell you right now that you need to be prepared with tissues as you get close to the end of the book. There is some sadness that brought me to utter tears. But don't worry, there's something super happy right at the end, so it makes up for it.

Jamie and Claire definitely have some struggles in this book. Let's start with the fact that at the beginning of the book, Claire thinks Jamie is dead, she's married to Lord John, and, oh yeah, she was suspected of being a spy.

Now, Jamie makes his reappearance rather suddenly, being pursued by the British army and taking John hostage as he runs into the woods. He also manages to get really angry in a way I don't think we've seen Jamie angry before. Poor William finds out at this time that Jamie is his father, so he kind of goes on a bit of a self-destructive path for a bit. Don't worry, he straightens himself out by the end. Sort of.

Ian and Rachel are so cute throughout the book, and I just fell in love with their relationship. They're no Claire and Jamie, but they probably run third (behind Brianna and Roger) in my favorite relationships in the books.

Claire angers people left and right by being herself - you know, stubborn, headstrong, kind of pushy. One of those people happens to be John's brother, but he seems to be a rather irritable sort of character anyway, so I don't worry too much about him.

And of course, lets face facts that all of this is happening during the American Revolution, so Jamie is risking his life in battle. Then Claire gets shot and he starts worrying that she's going to die. Lots of tension with the war stuff in there.

Following the other storyline, Brianna is stressed to the max. Jemmy is missing, she's not sure where he is, but she's realized that Mandy can sense him in a way. She knows when she's close to him and to a lesser extent, he does the same thing. Roger has gone back in time to try to find Jemmy, and while he doesn't find his son, he does find a Jeremiah Mackenzie. Brianna ends up making a really tough decision while he's back then (since she's used Mandy's gift of finding her brother to locate her son) that ends up affecting everyone's lives.

There are happy moments, sad moments, those moments that make you angry, the moments that make you laugh. But the hardest moments come towards the end. I hated those devastating moments.

Now to wait a long time for the next book to be released.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Behind a Mask


Ok. This was a required reading for a class, but I actually found it a little fascinating. I wasn't expecting this kind of a book from the author of Little Women. This is so drastically different from that classic novel that it surprised me.

Here's the deal. Jean Muir becomes governess for Bella Coventry. But she's there for more diabolical reasons. These reasons are dangled in front of you, but you don't really learn what they are until the end of the book.

Jean seems to be a helpless girl, one who is "cursed" with men falling in love with her. She just wants to live in peace, but all these men keep proposing marriage to her. She threatens to leave the Coventry house several times over the course of the book.

The secrets that end up being revealed at the end, when it's too late for anyone to do anything about it, are honestly shocking.

It's a book about a deceitful woman and so much betrayal.

It's quite an interesting book, but I definitely didn't love it. But, I definitely didn't hate it. It's just a little unexpected.