Waiting on The Hidden Oracle

WOW

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine

Screen Shot 2016-03-30 at 4.23.44 PM

The Hidden Oracle

The Trials of Apollo #1

Rick Riordan

5/3/2016

Divider

How do you punish an immortal?

By making him human.

After angering his father Zeus, the god Apollo is cast down from Olympus. Weak and disorientated, he lands in New York City as a regular teenage boy. Now, without his godly powers, the four-thousand-year-old deity must learn to survive in the modern world until he can somehow find a way to regain Zeus’s favor.

But Apollo has many enemies – gods, monsters and mortals who would love to see the former Olympian permanently destroyed. Apollo needs help, and he can think of only one place to go . . . an enclave of modern demigods known as Camp Half-Blood.

Divider It’s Rick Riordan.  It’s Apollo.  No explanation needed.

Review: Say Yes to the Marquess

review

Screen Shot 2016-04-13 at 9.49.53 PM.png

 

Say Yes to the Marquess

Castles Ever After #2

Tessa Dare

4.5stars


Your presence is requested at romantic Twill Castle for the wedding of Miss Clio Whitmore and . . . and . . . ?

After eight years of waiting for Piers Brandon, the wandering Marquess of Granville, to set a wedding date, Clio Whitmore has had enough. She’s inherited a castle, scraped together some pride, and made plans to break her engagement.

Not if Rafe Brandon can help it. A ruthless prizefighter and notorious rake, Rafe is determined that Clio will marry his brother—even if he has to plan the dratted wedding himself.

So how does a hardened fighter cure a reluctant bride’s cold feet?

● He starts with flowers. A wedding can’t have too many flowers. Or harps. Or cakes.

● He lets her know she’ll make a beautiful, desirable bride—and tries not to picture her as his.

● He doesn’t kiss her.

● If he kisses her, he definitely doesn’t kiss her again.

● When all else fails, he puts her in a stunning gown. And vows not to be nearby when the gown comes off.

● And no matter what—he doesn’t fall in disastrous, hopeless love with the one woman he can never call his own.

Divider

I have now read 5 historical romance novels. I have been trying to test different authors to see who I like, who I don’t and to get a general feel of the genre. So far I have read Sarah MacLean (The Rouge Not Taken), Lisa Kleypas (Mine Till Midnight), Julia Quinn (The Duke and I) and Tessa Dare (Romancing the Duke & Say Yes to the Marquess).

For the most part I’ve enjoyed all of them. I had some issues with The Duke and I, (I have a review scheduled for my Historical Thursday #3 in May which will explain those issues) but I am still looking forward to reading more of Quinn’s work. But for now, it’s safe to say that Tessa Dare is my favorite of the four authors. I’ve read 2 of her books! And I’ve loved them both to pieces. I can’t even decide which one I liked more.

I loved Clio and that she was so adamant about ending her engagement and starting her own business at the castle she had inherited. And I loved Rafe and all the effort he put in to convincing her to marry his brother. And I loved them together. (Can you tell I loved the book?) Their relationship was adorable and I thought they complimented each other perfectly. The banter, as always, was hilarious, built upon years of being acquainted with one another. And can we talk about that cake fight scene? That’s the rom-com gold and I couldn’t keep a smile off my face the entire time.

I have absolutely no problem with the fact that they were falling in love while she was still engaged to his brother. If this had been a contemporary romance or if Clio and Piers had been a love match to start with, I would have taken issue, but no fucks were given here.

I hate to say that I found fault with one minor plot point, but it was towards the end. It had to do with how they finally handled the ever absent third point of the triangle (for lack of a better word), Clio’s fiancé and Rafe’s brother Piers. I would have preferred it to have gone down slightly differently, but you can’t always get what you want and it didn’t ruin the ending for me.

I will definitely be reading When a Scot Ties a Knot and everything else Tessa Dare has ever written, but I am going to try and spread it out so I don’t go through the backlist too quickly!

Waiting on Traitor Angels

WOW

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine

Screen Shot 2016-03-30 at 4.23.53 PM

 

Traitor Angels

Anne Blankman

5/3/2016

Divider

Six years have passed since England’s King Charles II returned from exile to reclaim the throne, ushering in a new era of stability for his subjects.

Except for Elizabeth Milton. The daughter of notorious poet John Milton, Elizabeth has never known her place in this shifting world—except by her father’s side. By day she helps transcribe his latest masterpiece, the epic poem Paradise Lost, and by night she learns languages and sword fighting. Although she does not dare object, she suspects that he’s training her for a mission whose purpose she cannot fathom.

Until one night the reason becomes clear: the king’s man arrive at her family’s country home to arrest her father. Determined to save him, Elizabeth follows his one cryptic clue and journeys to Oxford, accompanied by her father’s mysterious young houseguest, Antonio Vivani, a darkly handsome Italian scientist who surprises her at every turn. Funny, brilliant, and passionate, Antonio seems just as determined to protect her father as she is—but can she trust him with her heart?

When the two discover that Milton has planted an explosive secret in the half-finished Paradise Lost—a secret the king and his aristocratic supporters are desperate to conceal—Elizabeth is faced with a devastating choice: cling to the shelter of her old life or risk cracking the code, unleashing a secret that could save her father…and tear apart the very fabric of society.

Historical Romance Thursday #2

Screen Shot 2016-04-04 at 9.29.46 AM

 

Romancing the Duke

Castles Ever After #1

Tessa Dare

4.5stars


 

As the daughter of a famed author, Isolde Ophelia Goodnight grew up on tales of brave knights and fair maidens. She never doubted romance would be in her future, too. The storybooks offered endless possibilities.

And as she grew older, Izzy crossed them off. One by one by one.

Ugly duckling turned swan?
Abducted by handsome highwayman?
Rescued from drudgery by charming prince?

No, no, and… Heh.

Now Izzy’s given up yearning for romance. She’ll settle for a roof over her head. What fairy tales are left over for an impoverished twenty-six year-old woman who’s never even been kissed?

This one.

Divider

I really need to start rating based on genre because within the HR genre (yeah I’ve only read like 3, but still) this definitely should have 5 stars.  Maybe I’ll figure out  away to do that someday.

But I loved this book.  While I really enjoyed both Izzy and Ransom as individuals, it was their relationship which made this book.  The banter was awesome and I love a good “hate to love” trope.  While I’m usually not a fan of the tortured hero, Ransom was just the right amount of cocky to make up for it.  Plus he did tend to veer away from self pity for the most part.

The Goodnight Tales (was that what they were called? Curse my memory) and the whole Moranglian subplot was one I actually enjoyed as well.  I didn’t think I would but I really, really did.  It was a bit over the top but whatever.  It definitely added to the charm of this novel

I’d heard that Tessa Dare wrote funny books, and I was really happy that I agree! I actually laughed quite a few times.  Real laughs too, not just a little chuckle which is what usually happens.

This is a really shitty review and I feel like I nothing I say can even show how much I loved this book.  If you haven’t read it and you are into historical romances definitely pick it up.  It is so much fun. I definitely plan to continue this series and I’m really looking forward to reading more of Tessa Dare’s novels.

Waiting on Love, Lies and Spies

WOW

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine

Screen Shot 2016-03-30 at 4.24.05 PM

Love, Lies and Spies

Cindy Anstey

4/19/2016


Juliana Telford is not your average nineteenth-century young lady. She’s much more interested in researching ladybugs than marriage, fashionable dresses, or dances. So when her father sends her to London for a season, she’s determined not to form any attachments. Instead, she plans to secretly publish their research.

Spencer Northam is not the average young gentleman of leisure he appears. He is actually a spy for the War Office, and is more focused on acing his first mission than meeting eligible ladies. Fortunately, Juliana feels the same, and they agree to pretend to fall for each other. Spencer can finally focus, until he is tasked with observing Juliana’s traveling companions . . . and Juliana herself.

DividerThis just sounds like a lot of fun and I love female characters who go against societal norms.

A Modern Day Sherlock Holmes Fail

review

Screen Shot 2016-04-07 at 8.47.36 PM.png

 

Lock and Mori

Lock and Mori #1

Heather W. Petty

2stars


 

In modern-day London, two brilliant high school students—one Sherlock Holmes and a Miss James “Mori” Moriarty—meet. A murder will bring them together. The truth very well might drive them apart.

Before they were mortal enemies, they were much more…


FACT: Someone has been murdered in London’s Regent’s Park. The police have no leads.


FACT: Miss James “Mori” Moriarty and Sherlock “Lock” Holmes should be hitting the books on a school night. Instead, they are out crashing a crime scene.

FACT: Lock has challenged Mori to solve the case before he does. Challenge accepted.

FACT: Despite agreeing to Lock’s one rule—they must share every clue with each other—Mori is keeping secrets.

OBSERVATION: Sometimes you can’t trust the people closest to you with matters of the heart. And after this case, Mori may never trust Lock again.

Divider

 

I’d first like to say that this book was 245 pages and it took me 3 days to read it.  I should have been able to finish it within a single afternoon, so that’s saying something.

I’m not a super huge Sherlock Holmes fan. I’ve only ever read The Hound of the Baskervilles, but I do watch BBC Sherlock and the American Elementary. And I really like retellings, both fairytales and classics. So I thought I would really enjoy Lock and Mori, a modern day retelling focusing on Sherlock Holmes and James Moriarty, who happens to be female in this version.

But almost right away I felt like something was off. Again, I don’t know that much about the characters beyond what I’ve seen portrayed in shows, but neither one felt true to what I’m guessing the original would be.

Obviously authors have the right to change things, but I was just not a fan. Not only were they almost nothing like the originals, but they were so bland. There was nothing exciting about them. Plus, John Watson has 2 lines and I’m sorry, but there is no Sherlock without Watson.

And the instalove! Now I’m almost positive that Sherlock and Moriarty are nemeses of sorts, so to have them fall in love could be controversial to begin with, but this was just a bit ridiculous.  They’ve known each other like 3 weeks and Mori claims that she will always love him. Give me a break.

And the actual plot? Lame. You find out almost right away who the killer is and then it’s just Mori hiding facts from Sherlock. Also, she is a fucking idiot for how she handled things. I kind of understand why she thought she should do things that way, but no. She was so stupid.

This was a fail and I will not be continuing with the series.

Review: Rock Chick Rescue

review

Screen Shot 2016-03-30 at 9.51.13 PM

 

Rock Chick Rescue

Rock Chick #2

Kristen Ashley

3stars


Jet McAlister has a secret. Eddie Chavez has the hots for Jet (not to mention Eddie’s just plain hot). Jet has too many problems to realize that Eddie’s interested. Eddie loses patience when Jet ends her waitressing shift at a strip club with a knife at her throat. Since Eddie’s a cop, he figures he can help. Since Jet’s used to solving everyone’s problems she doesn’t want Eddie’s help.

Throw in a Dolly Parton look-alike, a gruff but lovable strip club owner, Jet’s ne’er do well father, his ne’er do well friend, Bear, Bear’s long-suffering, chain-smoking wife Lavonne and the crew from Rock Chick and you’ve got Rock Chick Rescue.

Rock Chick Rescue takes you on a wild ride with Jet, Eddie and the gang as they wrestle bad guys in a bagel shop, hit Denver’s backstreet poker tables (with big hair), and help the strippers at Smithie’s take down a would-be murderer.

Through this, Jet’s got to learn that even when life made you give up your dreams, you can still end up with the (hot) guy. Eddie’s got to rescue Jet from a bad man (so he can do better things with her) and teach her that some dreams can come true.

Divider

I admitted in my review of Rock Chick that alpha males aren’t my favorite type of hero. I get that some people really love them, but I am just not one of them. With that said, I did actually really enjoy Rock Chick and Lee wasn’t the worst hero I’ve come across. Maybe it was because it was the older brother/sister’s best friend trope (which I LOVE) or because Lee and Indy had grown up together, but his possessiveness didn’t really bother me that much.

But with Rock Chick Rescue, I wasn’t able to look past it as much. A lot of Eddie physically handling Jet, telling her that no matter what she did she was his now and sometimes it was just a little too much. For the most part I did like Eddie, but he also gave off a kind of creepy vibe.

I think another reason I was able to look past it in RC was because Indy was pretty awesome. She called Lee out on his bullshit. Yeah she gave in and slept with him (but it is Romance), but she continued to make it clear that he couldn’t control her.

I wasn’t a huge fan of Jet. First because she didn’t call Eddie out on his shit nearly as much as he needed to be and second, I’m just not a fan of the martyr character. Maybe it makes me feel like an asshole because I would definitely accept any and all help being offered if I had been held at knife point/shot at/and threatened with rape. There is nothing wrong with accepting help, especially in a situation like this. And ENOUGH with the “I’m boring” and “I’m not pretty” shit. Enough.

I definitely enjoyed the entire cast of characters being back (with some new additions) but I just didn’t think the plot was as much fun as Rock Chick.

It’s Not You, It’s Me (It’s Totally You): Series I’ve Abandoned

discussion

Sometimes I’m really bad at finishing series, especially if the series isn’t complete.  If I read a book and then I have to wait months for the sequel, there is a good chance I won’t continue because I will have forgotten 85% of what happened in the original.  Sometimes it happens when the whole series is complete and I love the first book.  I just wait too long before actually getting to the 2nd book and then I still forget what happened.   I’m getting better at waiting for the majority of the series to be out before I begin, but it’s still an issue.

There are, however, quite a few series that I have knowingly and willingly abandoned.  There are some I would consider giving a second chance and others you couldn’t pay me to touch with a 10 foot pole. (Total lie. I would read almost anything if you paid me. Even 50 Shades of Grey.)

Here are 8 series I have abandoned within the past couple of years.  These do not include any series where I have DNFed the first book.

Continue reading

Possibly the Only 5 Star Book I Will Ever Review

review

Screen Shot 2016-04-07 at 4.29.51 PM.png

 

Three Times Lucky

Tupelo Landing (Mo and Dale Mystery) #1

Sheila Turnage

5stars


 

Rising sixth grader Miss Moses LoBeau lives in the small town of Tupelo Landing, NC, where everyone’s business is fair game and no secret is sacred. She washed ashore in a hurricane eleven years ago, and she’s been making waves ever since. Although Mo hopes someday to find her “upstream mother,” she’s found a home with the Colonel–a café owner with a forgotten past of his own–and Miss Lana, the fabulous café hostess. She will protect those she loves with every bit of her strong will and tough attitude. So when a lawman comes to town asking about a murder, Mo and her best friend, Dale Earnhardt Johnson III, set out to uncover the truth in hopes of saving the only family Mo has ever known.

Full of wisdom, humor, and grit, this timeless yarn will melt the heart of even the sternest Yankee.

Divider

I fall asleep to audiobooks every night. And while I listen to a variety of audiobooks there are only two series that I fall asleep to. Percy Jackson and the Olympians and The Mo and Dale Mysteries (Tupelo Landing). At this point I’ve probably listened to each series about 10 times. I don’t update that I’ve read them that many times (because I’m usually sleeping) but still.

I first read this book in 2014 but only recently wrote an actual review of it.  And since it’s Thursday, I figured a nice Throwback Thursday was in order.

Mo is absolutely my favorite heroine of all time. Yeah she can be a bit trying but she is always so lovable that it is easy to look past her faults. She is so sassy and I just love her so much. I want any future daughters I may have to be just like her.

Of course this book is nothing without the other characters both main and secondary. Dale is probably the best friend you could have. A lot of his character development happens in the second and third books of this series, but this is a great introduction.   The Colonel and Miss Lana are an amazing family of choice.

I especially enjoy the Colonel and Mo’s relationship and how they use military jargon to communicate. And the rest of the town is just so wonderful! I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention Lavender, Dale’s older brother, a mechanic and race car driver. He is definitely Book Boyfriend material (and it’s not weird because he is over the age of 18). Mo might have to fight me for him (in just 7 years).

Is this book realistic? Hardly. Every time I listen I think of a new problem that I then easily ignore because it’s just such a fun book. At the same time, however, there are darker themes throughout the book. Addiction, abuse and (possible) abandonment, while not at the forefront, are integral elements of this story.

 

And I love it so damn much I’m upping my rating to 5 stars.

Waiting on Dreamology by Lucy Keating

WOW

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine

dreamology

Dreamology

Lucy Keating

4/12/2016


 

For as long as Alice can remember, she has dreamed of Max. Together they have traveled the world and fallen deliriously, hopelessly in love. Max is the boy of her dreams—and only her dreams. Because he doesn’t exist.

But when Alice walks into class on her first day at a new school, there he is. It turns out, though, that Real Max is nothing like Dream Max, and getting to know each other in reality isn’t as perfect as Alice always hoped.

When their dreams start to bleed dangerously into their waking hours, the pair realize that they might have to put an end to a lifetime of dreaming about each other. But when you fall in love in your dreams, can reality ever be enough?

DividerHonestly, while the plot does sound interesting, I really just love the cover.  The plot kind of reminds me of Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan.