Thursday, October 25, 2018

J. D. Horn's new series- perfect for Halloween time!

Are you looking for a Halloween book? J. D. Horn's new series The Witches of New Orleans is it. This series is for adults. It's a three book series, with the final book set to be released June 2019. These books have a certain creep factor to them. If you find yourself struggling with the first book due to the large amount of characters, I'd highly recommend the audio book and sticking with the series through the second- the second book contains a character list in the front of the book.
If you're looking for something a little lighter, I'd recommend his Witching Savannah series (The 4th book, Jilo, was my favorite)

Where to find J. D. Horn: Click here

Book #1: The King Bones & Ashes (Witches of New Orleans, Book 1)


Where to purchase:
Amazon
Barnes & Noble
IndieBound
Target

My review:
This book has a slow, steady pace. While I enjoyed the story, I can see how it might be a turn off for those who aren’t expecting it. With that being said, the story itself is a combo of fantasy mixed with real world authenticity- magic, witches, clairvoyant, New Orleans life style, young lovers, old lovers, betrayal, mystery, and more! The details are phenomenal. It has a darker tone and a certain creep factor to it (it’s a good thing).

The only problem I had with the book was the many characters. Perhaps it’s because I listened to the audio book vs. reading? I plan to listen to the story again as I know I missed some things in the beginning- the book is full of details, big and small, so pay attention. The story is told through the different viewpoints of the characters. The narrator for the audio book was great- easy to listen to voice.

This series has a more serious tone than his Witching Savannah series, so if you’re looking for something similar to that, you might be disappointed. This is not a book for the kiddos or faint of heart- contains violence and death.

I will be reading/listening to the next book in the series as this series is full of potential that I hope will unfold in the second book. I would recommend this book if you are into dark fantasy.


Book #2: The Book of the Unwinding (Witches of New Orleans, Book 2)

Where to purchase:
Amazon
Barnes & Noble
IndieBound
Target

My review:
Sometimes there are those books that you don’t read alone in the dark...this is one of those books (or if you have an overactive imagination like me you don’t read it when you’re home alone at nighttime because every noise you hear...). There is a creep factor to it and it’s awesome! Would recommend to those who enjoy dark fantasy mixed with real world authenticity.

As with the first book in the series, there is a lot of information and stories happening via different characters viewpoints. The author has helped remedy any confusion in the story by placing a character list in the beginning of the book- use it, it’s your friend. This book was easier to follow than the first and faster-paced in some parts (in my opinion).

Minimal spoilers below……..
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Similar to the first book: the story is a combo of fantasy mixed with real world authenticity, magic, witches, clairvoyant, New Orleans life style, young lovers, old lovers, betrayal, mystery.

Things that are new: Magic is disappearing from the world, while the witches of New Orleans are trying to keep it but are still scrambling from the previous events. The seven gates to the underworld are said to be located in New Orleans. Yes, there is more, but I’m not giving all the spoilers away. It’s hard to pick a favorite character because they each bring something unique to the story, but I look forward to seeing how Nathalie and Alice’s stories play out.

The details are once again phenomenal. The series has a darker tone and I would not recommend for those who are not into dark fantasy, faint of heart, or children.

I highly recommend the audio book. I started listening to the audio book, tried numerous times to switch over to reading and ended up going back to the audio book. The audio book adds to the story as the narrator did a brilliant job. I find myself reading the not so good reviews and saying “if only they would have listened to the audio book”...

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Dragon Riders of Elantia series...


This post is about all the books available in the Dragon Riders of Elantia series by Jessica Drake. Her newest book, the fourth in the series, was released today. It's called War of the Dragon.
I recommend this series if you are a fan of dragons or fantasy books with magic. This is a series for adults due to language and adult situations. Not recommended for kids.
My reviews of the series, starting with book one, are below.

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Call of the Dragon: a Dragon Fantasy Adventure (Dragon Riders of Elantia Book 1) by Jessica Drake is a book for dragon lovers and good luck putting it down- I read it straight through. This is a series where it’s going to be difficult waiting for the next book because you want to read it now. I don’t think you will be disappointed with this book at all.

Brief summary/minimal spoilers below…..
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Zara Kenrook is a treasure hunter who co-owns an antique shop on the ground. Her lineage is unknown as she was raised in an orphanage. Events occur that result in her becoming bonded with a dragonling, Lessie. This catapults her into an unknown way of living and new adventures in the cities in the sky/dragon academy. Other things you can expect:

Dragon wars/history, magic, dragon god, bad guys, floating islands that people live on, the dragon academy (some snotty people/some nice, classes, dragon riding, etc.), upper class vs. lower class (upper city vs. ground-dwellers), gangs who run the street/crime on the ground, romance, friendships (old and new), twists and turn that you may or may not see coming, and more!
I would highly recommend this book if you are into dragons, fantasy, magic, or fast-paced books.

Parental advisory/trigger warnings: some swearing, stealing, war talk, talk of mating between dragons, mention of casual sex (once) and more adult relationship themes although minimal (kissing, mention of breasts once), flirting, killing, weapons.

Where to purchase:
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Flight of the Dragon (Dragon Riders of Elantia, Book 2) by Jessica Drake is an excellent second book to the series! I read it in less than two days- it was a quick and easy read...4 1/2 stars. Would recommend for those who are looking for a dragon fantasy, new fantasy series, love magic/adventure, or like a strong female lead. There are many adventures in this book- pretty much a constant stream, which makes it difficult to put the book down.

Minimal spoilers below…
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Zara is continuing her training with Lessie, her dragon, at Tavarian’s secret estate. War is on the brink and begins as the book progresses. Forced to begin active duty in Elantia’s military, Zara struggles on many levels. Salcombe is up to his nefarious ways throughout the book. Other things to expect: magic, airships, relationships gains and strains, dragon riding, humans bonding with their dragons, use of Zara’s ability, letter writing (technology isn’t like it is today), weapons, dragon god occultists, and surprises regarding Tavarian.

You could probably read this book without reading the first, but I wouldn’t recommend it as you will miss some key details about how things came to be. This book’s ending is meant to continue into the third book so if you are not a fan of waiting for a series/expecting closure, this isn’t for you.

The only thing I didn’t care for is Jallis and Zara’s romantic relationship. I might be in the minority on this, but it just doesn’t feel right. It doesn’t ruin the book by any means (romantic scenes are minimal). I was hoping as the series continued the awkwardness would go, but it didn’t.

Overall, I recommend this series, especially if you enjoy fantasy books with dragons.

Parental advisory/trigger warnings: Some swearing (S-word a couple of times), stealing, death, war talk and actions, cannons (that injure dragons), kidnapping, drugs that are used to drug other people, brief talk of semi-nude male body and sleeping with guys (one sentence).

Where to purchase:
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Might of the Dragon (Dragon Riders of Elantia, Book 3) was a quick, easy read...recommend for dragon fantasy lovers. The only problem with this book series is I need more! Might of the Dragon (Dragon Riders of Elantia Book #3) is the best in the series so far. I read it in under 24 hours.

I would recommend this series if you are looking for a new fantasy or dragon series.

Minimal spoilers below……..
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Zara and Lessie are back and trying to evade the bad people that are coming at them from all angles. This book is fast-paced and has a lot of action.

Some things to expect: dragons, new love interest, war with bordering lands, noble court events, ongoing nefarious plans, and more.

This book is part of an ongoing series. If you are looking for closure at the end, you will not get it yet. I wouldn’t recommend starting with this book as you will miss key information from the previous books.

Parental advisory/trigger warnings: a couple swear words, drugs that are used to drug other people, death, war, stealing, and a kiss.

Where to purchase:

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Overall, War of the Dragon (Dragon Riders of Elantia, Book 4) by Jessica Drake was a good addition to the series. I had a hard time getting into this book- it wasn’t until around 12% that it picked up enough for me to want to keep reading (which has not been normal for this series- I’ve not wanted to put the previous books down). This book waxed and waned with adventures- it was either fast-paced action or lots of talk about war & strategies, etc./thoughts about Tavarian. The ending and a specific new character were great- these help to redeem any part I felt was too slow. I did enjoy the adventures and Lessie’s snark. I would recommend reading this series- from the beginning.

For those who need a little more info, minimal spoilers below…
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This book is more so about the adventures of Zara, Lessie, and Tavarian. They are trying to find the missing dragons and riders, who have been taken by the Zallabarians. A God enters the story and hangs around- I won’t say anymore than it makes the book entertaining. New and old characters make appearances/problems. As stated above, lots of war talk/strategies/etc. Also a good amount of romance/feelings on Tavarian.

Parental warning/Trigger warnings: a swear word or words such as “dragon’s balls”, severed heads, fawning over a guy (quite a few times), drinking in a bar, killing of animals for purpose of feeding dragon, sex- not detailed “made love” “pushed each other toward an endless wave of bliss”, war (talk, dead humans and dragons, strategies, rape of a woman- not detailed, a mention of it to Zara).


#Dragons #AmReading #Fantasy #JessicaDrake #WarOfTheDragon #DragonRidersofElantia #books


Where to purchase:
Amazon

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*I received an ARC in exchange for my honest reviews of this series*

Where to find Jessica:
Goodreads
Facebook

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Iron Garland (Harbinger, Book 3) by Jeff Wheeler

Rarely is a there a series I read twice, but this is one of them. I can't say enough good things about Jeff's new series. If you haven't tried it yet, please do. Full review below.




~ Where to purchase ~



A series that you won’t want to miss- fantasy aficionados must read!

Just when I think Jeff Wheeler can’t outdo himself, he has! Iron Garland (Harbinger, Book 3) is just as phenomenal as the previous book, dare I say even better? Yes, I will. 5 stars easily. Highly recommend the series for anyone looking for a new fantasy series. If you haven’t jumped on the Jeff Wheeler bandwagon, it’s time to do so.

This book jumps three years into the future with Cettie and Sera as the main characters like in the previous books. Jeff handles the time jumps wonderfully and it certainly adds to the success of the story. The plot continues with twists and turns, so you never quite know what to expect.

Warning, minimal spoilers below…
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Cettie and Sera are back, this time Cettie is the keeper of Fog Willows, while Sera is biding her time waiting to get out of Lady Corrine’s grasp. War with Kingfountain complicates matters. Cettie and Sera learn more about themselves and become strong in their own rights. The mysteries and magic continue to unfold. We learn more about Kingfountain’s way of life. Steven’s privilege shows and creates problems. Political maneuvers continue throughout the book. New and old characters add mystery and mayhem. Cettie’s mother becomes known in this book (nope, not telling you, read the book 😊).

This line stuck out to me (oh how true)- “She thought it strange how the past had its own form of magic that could play chords on the heart.” And this one gave me a chuckle- “That was when Raj Sarin humbled him the Bhikhu way.”

When you read this, you will be reminded that even when times are tough you must continue on and to never give up. The author’s note at the end is interesting- he tells of how Lady Corrine’s character came to be.

As I read this book, I couldn’t help but think how what transpires can be related to things happening in the real world today (specifically the prejudice of those who do not share our own viewpoints and how to make it work).

As stated with the previous book reviews, I would recommend this series for those who love fantasy with elements of steampunk and good life lessons. There is a reason Jeff’s books get great ratings, so go on and give this series a read (or listen).


Parental advisory/trigger warnings: war, death from war or nefarious characters (murder via push and gunshot), fighting with body parts and attempted drowning, weapons, stealing, difference of religious beliefs, hugging, marriage proposals, mention of a guys arm against a lady’s bosom during a dance, drug addiction (poppy extracts for a soldier due to his injuries). There is no swearing.

*I received an advanced copy of this book from 47North via NetGally/the author, in exchange for my honest review. Thank you for allowing me to review the book, it was awesome!



#IronGarland #NetGalley #Fantasy #SciFi #Reading #LifeLessons #Books #JeffWheeler #MustRead #Magic #Teens #YoungAdult #AmReading











Thursday, October 4, 2018

Harbinger Book series by Jeff Wheeler (Storm Glass & Mirror Gate)

My first review(s) will be on Jeff Wheeler's new Harbinger Series, book 1 (Storm Glass) and book 2 (Mirror Gate). I have recently started reading Jeff's books and cannot speak highly enough about them. Beware, once you start this series, you will have a difficult time putting it down.


Book #1:

Brilliant book, everyone should be reading this one! 5 stars easily...   

What to say that others haven’t? Not sure, but I’ll give it a shot. Storm Glass (Harbinger Book 1) by Jeff Wheeler was phenomenal! For reals...it kept me wondering what would happen next and did surprise me several times (a rare thing in a book). Would recommend for those who love fantasy with some elements of steampunk and good life lessons.

There are two main characters with different stories that merge together, Cettie and Sera. Cettie is from the Fells (the ground, lower class), while Sera is from the upper class and born a princess (floating island). Both are destined to change their world. The supporting characters are fantastic (good and evil ones). There will be at least one character you can relate to in this book. It feels a bit steampunkish with certain elements (note it is not full steampunk).
Things to expect: life lessons, friendships, enemies, ghosts, science, mysteries, magic, and great world building.

Overall I would recommend this book and can’t wait for the second!

Audiobook was easy to listen to and would recommend it.

Parental advisory/trigger warnings: stabbing of two teenagers with knife, talk of marriages failing due to affairs, mistreatment/bullying of children (but the adults in charge do the right thing and help- good life lessons in the story). I do not recall any swearing or sex talk. I would have no problem letting my younger teen/tween read this book due to the life lessons involved (treat people right, do the right thing even if people tell you otherwise/look down on you for it, everyone has the ability to become/do something with their life).

*I read one review that said this book is like The Hunger Games- I disagree with this comment. Only thing close is there is an upper class and lower class.

#Fantasy #Reading #Books #JeffWheeler #MustRead


~ Where to purchase ~
Amazon
Barnes & Noble
IndieBound
iTunes


Book #2

Another fantastic book in the Harbinger Series- a must read for fantasy lovers!

Mirror Gate (Harbinger Book 2) by Jeff Wheeler is a phenomenal second book! This is one of those series you savor because you don’t want it to end.

So far this series has not disappointed. You can expect twists and turns (not all are predictable), great world building that brings you into the story, and not being able to put the book down.
Warning, minimal spoilers below…
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Cettie and Sera are back, this time a friendship has formed while they are roommates at Muirwood Abbey. Each navigate their lives the best they can during the awkward teen years and what destiny has in store for them. There are big gains and losses this time around. New characters add mystique.
New weapons and magic create trouble. There is revealing of some of the mysteries, knowledge, and history related to the world (Yay!). Expect lots of action and more political moves.

While you read this, you will be reminded that anything is possible, we can be our own worst enemy at times, even when times are tough you must continue on, and similar life lessons. Read the author’s note at the end, you can see how it influenced this series.

This book is not meant to be a stand-alone, so start from the beginning or you will miss key details. The book switches between Cettie and Sera’s viewpoints, but it does not confuse the reader and is beautifully done.

I look forward to listening to the audiobook when released. Also looking forward to the third book being released this year (Iron Garland November 13, 2018). This is going to be a repeat read series for me, which is a rare thing.

I would recommend this series for those who love fantasy with elements of steampunk and good life lessons. If you enjoyed the first one, you will enjoy this one.

Parental advisory/trigger warnings: war, death from war or nefarious characters, weapons such as an arquebus, abductions or attempted abductions (can’t go into specifics without giving major spoilers away), demons/ghosts possessing bodies. The main characters are older teens in this book- there is some mild flirting/pursuing/interest of others. There is no swearing.
As with the first book, I would have no problem letting my younger teen/tween read this book due to the life lessons involved.

*I received an advanced copy of this book from 47North via NetGalley, in exchange for my honest review. Thank you for allowing me to review the book!

#MirrorGate #NetGalley #Fantasy #SciFi #Steampunk #Reading #LifeLessons #Books #JeffWheeler #MustRead #Magic #Teens #YoungAdult



~ Where to purchase ~
Amazon
Barnes & Noble
IndieBound
iTunes


Jeff's website