Monday, August 13, 2018

Review: Grace and Fury

Grace and Fury Grace and Fury by Tracy Banghart
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

All her life, Serina has been taught what it takes to become a Grace. It is finally time to go before the heir and see if he will pick her, but when her reckless younger sister catches his eye and is chosen instead of her, Serina’s world is turned upside down. Now Serina is in prison for an action her sister committed; Nomi is stuck in the palace in a position she never wanted and is trying to determine if there is a way to save her sister. With all of the palace intrigue, who can Nomi trust? Will the sisters be reunited or will they run out of time?

Grace and Fury is the first book in a series with the same name. The story alternates between the sisters’ points of views, yet readers will easily be able to follow the story through the pages. Banghart has created characters that are easy to relate to and brings out hidden depths as they struggle to cope with their situation. Grace and Fury has two strong female protagonists which gives the novel just a little something extra for the reader to enjoy. I will be looking forward to the next installment in this world where women are too often overlooked.

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Friday, August 10, 2018

Review: Like Never and Always

Like Never and Always Like Never and Always by Ann Aguirre
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Liv wakes up recovering in a hospital bed. Everyone is calling her Morgan and she doesn’t understand how she could be mistaken for her best friend. That is until the bandages come off and she realizes that she is not Liv at all. Liv thought that Morgan had a perfect life, but as she literally has to walk in Morgan’s shoes, she quickly learns that Morgan was hiding many secrets. It doesn’t help that she is torn between the boy she has learned to love as Morgan and his brother (the boy she loved as Liv). Is Morgan going crazy or was Liv’s essence imported into Morgan’s body?

Like Never and Always is a stand-alone novel that gives readers many things to think about. Aguirre has included many plausible scenarios next to the primary unbelievable story. As the book moved along I couldn’t help but wonder how it was going to end. I will tell my readers that there is a twist and you will be left satisfied with part of the ending and not quite sure about the rest. I recommend Like Never and Always for those who enjoy a good mystery and adventure that doesn’t take too much mental power on the reader’s part.

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Sunday, August 5, 2018

Review: Sanctuary

Sanctuary Sanctuary by Caryn Lix
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Kenzie may be young, but she knows what she wants. Her goal is to become an elite guard on the space prison Sanctuary. She is already a junior guard and is showing the other guards that she has earned this right, even though their commanding officer is her mother. When the superpowered prisoners take Kenzie hostage in a drill gone wrong, Kenzie learns that there are secrets that her parents have been keeping. Who else is on this ship with them? What will Kenzie need to do in order to survive and hopefully save Earth?

Sanctuary is the first book in the science fiction series with the same title. Readers will begin this story thinking it has the usual sci-fi elements, yet Lix slowly weaves in additional twists and turns to keep the reader’s attention. Kenzie must juggle being the only guard on the prisoner side as she continues to try and keep her feelings separate from the tasks at hand. Sanctuary was a fun first book and I will be looking forward to more books in this universe.

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Thursday, July 26, 2018

Review: The Warrior Queen

The Warrior Queen The Warrior Queen by Emily R. King
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Tarachand Empire is finally experiencing a time of peace and the Bhutas don’t have to practice their gifts in secret. Prince Ashwin is ready to become rajah, but Kalinda still thinks about what she had to give up to make all of this happen. Even though Deven must stay in the Void, he has lasted longer than most humans and is even able to visit Kalinda at night. Is there a way for Kalinda to save the man she loves? How long will the peace in the empire last?

The Warrior Queen is the fourth and final book in The Hundredth Queen series. Readers who have been following Kalinda through her various quests will find satisfaction in these pages. King has taken the opportunity to not only wrap up the various storylines but also delve deeper into the characters she has already created. The Warrior Queen is a satisfactory final book, but should only be read after finishing the first three books.

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Sunday, July 22, 2018

Review: Price of Duty

Price of Duty Price of Duty by Todd Strasser
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Everyone says that Jake Liddell is a war hero. He is even scheduled to receive the Silver Star for some of his actions during combat, but now that he is away from his platoon, recovering, he isn’t sure he wants to return and finish his tour. To make matters worse, he is from a military family, so there are additional expectations at home. What will Jake decide to do next? Why does he believe he isn’t a hero at all?

Price of Duty is a stand-alone novel that is gripping and heartfelt. The topic is timely in this age where war and battle are portrayed gloriously in the media, yet our young men and women are the ones living it on a daily basis. Strasser has given readers a variety of characters with many different views of war and lets the reader determine what their feelings should be. This book is a definite read for everyone and a strong suggestion for those reluctant male teen readers. Price of Duty will leave all readers thinking about the issues long after the last page is turned.

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Friday, July 20, 2018

Review: The Brink of Darkness

The Brink of Darkness The Brink of Darkness by Jeff Giles
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Zoe's life changed that fateful night when she met the supernatural bounty hunter that she has named X. X gave up his chance at freedom in order to save Zoe and her family; now X wants to remove the hold that the lords have over him. In order to have a future, he must understand his past. What secrets will X uncover about his parents? Will X and Zoe be able to reunite or will their fight be in vain?

The Brink of Darkness is the second book in The Edge of Everything series. Giles does include some snippets at the beginning of the story to remind readers of the events that occurred in the first book, yet it wasn't overbearing or redundant. Readers will come to learn hidden depths about these varied characters and the story flows quickly which makes the book seem short. The ending is satisfactory, especially since it appears to be a duo series. The Brink of Darkness is a good read, but it is not a drop everything to finish the book read.

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Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Review: One Small Thing

One Small Thing One Small Thing by Erin Watt
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Beth has been living in the shadow of her dead sister for years and has decided that things will change for her senior year. With the help of her best friend, she sneaks out and goes to a party where she meets a new guy, Chase, and they hit it off. Unfortunately, Chase has many secrets he must deal with and when Beth's parents discover the deception, she is grounded in a way she has never experienced before. What will Beth do in order to re-earn her parent's trust? Why was Beth's sister running out into the street that night?

One Small Thing is a stand-alone novel that will grab the reader's attention in the beginning and keep them turning pages until the end. Watt leaves many hints about what the truth may be, yet she artfully keeps the secret until right before the ending. One Small Thing is a realistic fiction story that will appeal to many readers and I highly recommend it for teens and adults alike. It is a quick read, so please be ready to stay in your favorite reading location for extended periods of time.

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