A creative take on a fairy tale retelling, PRINCESS OF THORNS follows the daughter of Sleeping Beauty, Aurora, as she treks through the kingdom to rescue her brother. With elements of other fairy tales brought in (Niklaas’ curse comes to mind), PRINCESS OF THORNS is a wonderful continuation of a beloved fairy tale. Plus, the entire first half of the book has Aurora dressed up as and acting as a boy – a trope I can’t resist – and in this case, it was done well.
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CROUCHING TIGER, FORBIDDEN VAMPIRE, the last book of the Love at Stake has it all, from sweeping action, to tough as nails heroes, and a sweet romance between two very different people. In a previous review of another book in this series I complained that the much more interesting plot was overshadowed by the romance. In CROUCHING TIGER, FORBIDDEN VAMPIRE there is thankfully a balance and the romance actually works within the against the plot.
The Magic Born series has been, so far, a very well done, consistently written series, and I was hoping for similar in FIREWALL. After Lizzie and Vadim, I wasn’t sure if any couple could be better, or if there would be as much delving into the world. Luckily, FIREWALL delivered everything I hoped for.
WOLF’S FALL presented a protagonist with PTSD due to a torture incident with a vampire which was a pretty interesting problem to load onto a character. While I don’t know to much about what PTSD is like I thought it portrayed the struggles of someone who has gone through a heavy trauma very well.
ALL IN, the third Sin City Collector novella from Amanda Carlson, delivers just what I was looking for: a sizzling romance, some magical action, and a hint of mystery to keep things even more interesting.
Where BLACK WIDOW excels is going far beyond my expectations of a Elemental Assassin book. The series has felt repetitive at times though I keep coming back for me as I adore Gin and every other character that crosses paths with her good guy or bad. What BLACK WIDOW has done is take a series I’ve become comfortable with in regards to how the plot is going to go and flip it on its head. There is a game changer at the end of this book that I adore and can’t wait to see in the next book. Future expectations aside this book is excellent in its forward momentum towards that game changer moment.
One of the best things about GUNPOWDER ALCHEMY is the fact that the worldbuilding takes place in China during the Qing Dinasty. I so rarely read books predominately set in Asia so it was refreshing to see steampunk mixed in with Chinese customs and history. I enjoyed seeing some of that culture play a role in the fast paced plot such as the
A THOUSAND PIECES OF YOU by Claudia Gray is a charming, romantic adventure across multiple universes, though as with many fantastical stories built on a vague, pseudo-scientific premise, the souffle falls if you poke at it. As long as you’re the type of reader who can ignore inconsistencies in the rules of made-up technologies, Marguerite’s dance between dimensions in pursuit of revenge, love, and loss should spark your imagination.
Romantic police procedurals are a television staple, and The Naturals series brings this winning dynamic to young adult fiction. The teens making up this crime solving team fairly leap off the page, young and sexy and gifted.
If you missed Sophronia Temminick’s Finishing School adventures as much as I did, you’ll love Gail Carriger’s latest trip to Madamoiselle Geraldine’s and the lessons in proper spycraft within the pages of WAISTCOATS & WEAPONRY. The wider supernatural world closes in on Sophronia and her friends as the werewolf drama that sets the events of Carriger’s Parasol Protectorate series into motion happens while the ladies are learning the art of the bladed fan. With her friend Sidheag personally affected by pack dynamics, Sophronia has no choice but to get involved herself. It’s always a delight to go back to school with Carriger, though, like Sophronia’s first outing, WAISTCOATS & WEAPONRY feels more like a stepping stone in a larger story than its own novel.