Aug 19, 2019

ARC Review--Rage by Cora Carmack

Princess or adventurer.

Duty or freedom.

Her Kingdom or the Stormhunter she loves.

If Aurora knows anything, it's that choices have consequences. To set things right, she joins a growing revolution on the streets of Pavan.

In disguise as the rebel Roar, she puts her knowledge of the palace to use to aid the rebellion. But the Rage season is at its peak and not a day passes without the skies raining down destruction. Yet these storms are different—they churn with darkness, and attack with a will that’s desperate and violent.

This feels like more than rage.

It feels like war.

I received this ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest and voluntary review. I was in no way compensated for this review.

Cora Carmack returns to the Stormheart series with Rage, which picks up pretty much where we left things in Roar, though it’s been awhile, so I can’t say how precise it is, but it’s plenty soon enough! I was incredibly thrilled when I finally snagged an early copy of this one as I read the first book as an ARC such a long time ago, the wait for monstrous for this one and I have to say that Cora writes amazing fantasy!

Aurora is ready to return home, not so much because she longs to be home, but because she knows it’s time to take back her kingdom from the Lockes who have made themselves a little too comfortable in her absence. She needs to rescue her mother and best friend who are being kept in the castle by nefarious means, but in order to do all this she will have to finally confess to Kiran and her new friends, just who she really is.

I had forgotten that Aurora’s new friends didn’t know who she really was just yet. I remember it was a secret for the length of the first book, but couldn’t recall if she had revealed her identity in those last few moments, well she didn’t and we all know what happens when major secrets like that are kept for too long. It’s one of the most difficult things Aurora has had to do, since she and Kiran have grown closer. You can pretty much guess how this will play out and Cora doesn’t disappoint!

This book was pretty much packed with action and building action too of course. The grand finale (I’m guessing this is a trilogy, I can’t recall what Cora has said and Goodreads provides no answers as of now) is sure to be one of epic proportions and a battle to end all battles. The Stormlord, the one who is gunning for the Locke family, is still at large and still making his way towards the Lockes.

There was what I believe is a new point of view in this book that takes place in the past. I don’t recall seeing this before in the first book, but memory issues and an added length of time will do that to you. I was fairly certain I knew who this mystery voice was, though it’s never confirmed 100%, I think it’s a pretty safe bet to say I’m right! Though I won’t say why I’m right! Lol.

The pacing to this one was spot on! I never felt like there was a dull moment. If there wasn’t immediate action or swooniness on the page, there was buildup happening. Buildup to possible action, swooniness, and the like. As I said, I felt like there was never a dull moment to this one and I was always longing to be reading when I was stuck doing something else.

The relationship factor was another delight. Though Aurora and Kiran have their problems, there’s plenty of swooniness happening in the in-between moments. Add in the fact that we get multiple points of view in this story, including Aurora, Kiran, and their friends, you get a clear picture of where both Aurora and Kiran are coming from in their fight of sorts.

The ending was far more surprising than I anticipated! I wasn’t quite sure how I thought Cora would end things, would there be a killer cliffhanger? Would there be peace for the moment? What torment would be inflicted upon us readers again?! I’m happy to say that the cliffhanger is more like its predecessor, in that we have a momentary pause in the action. Is it the best place to end things for a year? Well, you know me, I’d say no, but in a sense it is. There’s just the agonizing “not knowing” we have going on for certain characters, but we do get a pretty whopper of a surprise at the end too! So it’s an ending that is part good and evil you could say! Lol.

Rage was definitely a book worth waiting for! If you were a fan of Roar, I’d highly recommend picking this one up! It continues Aurora’s story in the best possible of ways and I enjoyed every minute of it! Not only that, I am more than eager to see how things will be wrapped up in the final ending!

Overall Rating 5/5 stars

Rage releases August 27, 2019


It's Monday! What are You Reading?

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is hosted by Kathryn at Book Date. It's a fun meme where we gather to share what we've read last week and our reading plans for this week.

Last Week I Read:

A Mad Zombie Party by Gena Showalter (5 stars)

Currently Reading:

Unearthed by Cecy Robson (ARC)

What I Plan to Read Next:

Escaping from Houdini by Kerri Maniscalco

Other Posts of Interest:


Aug 18, 2019

Stacking the Shelves

Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks! The meme is now hosted by Tynga's Reviews and Reading Reality.

This week felt extra long and miserable! The heat didn't help. The 5-day work week didn't help. It was just agonizing! Though I did get some pretty awesome book mail, so that was a plus!! 

Here's what I bought:

Reticence by Gail Carriger--I actually bought this last week, but the mail came late and I was too lazy to fix my post by the time I got back home after writing the post earlier in the day! Lol.
Midnight Beauties by by Megan Shepherd

The Zeppelin Deception by Colleen Gleason--SIGNED! I ordered this through Colleen and got extra goodies too!

Then a happy surprise on Friday after a bout of dreadful traffic was this one for review:

Sea Witch Rising by Sarah Henning
THANK YOU Katherine Tegen Books!

Then I got TWO book boxes this week! Only three more to go!! Lol. I over bought on boxes this month!

 I impulsively subscribed to the Beacon Book Box--goodies only edition--at least for 3 months because they revealed what the book cover would be and I HAD to join just for that alone! Lol. So I'm happy joining for the time being! The goodies were a little lacking for this one, but as I said, I'm in it for the book covers! :D

 Then my Owl Crate box arrived yesterday, as it normally does in the months that I get it! I skipped the first 7 boxes this year because the book was always meh for me. But this month, I knew what it was and wanted the special edition that Owl Crate provided! I was quite happy with the box as a whole too!

Then I finally got my preorder swag for The Haunted:

I got three pencils with quotes from the book and a cool lenticular postcard/thingy!

THANK YOU Penguin Teen!
And then my replacement scarf from Fairy Loot's March box finally arrived! I was quite happy with how it turned out! It has the same style and feel of the first one, but with correct spelling on all the beloved books!
Then I was on Etsy and made an impulsive purchase...or three, but you know, still waiting on the rest! Lol. Trust me, you won't be surprised...
a CARAVAL pin to add to my collection!! I was looking at my hoop and thought it looked like it needed another pin, so I had to buy one, naturally!

This beauty is from SJ Wonderlandz!

And then at some point last week, I found myself on Ebay...making other purchases...this time Disney related! I'm still waiting on my second one to be shipped, it hasn't yet and it's worrying me since it says to arrive by last Friday through Wednesday, and I've yet to get an update on it shipping!

But I got this one this week and was quite pleased with myself:

It's The Haunted Mansion Funko Pop featuring Madam Leota...but it's the Disney Parks version, so she GLOWS IN THE DARK!!!
I paid a little extra for her because she hasn't made it to ShopDisney yet, but I figured what the average price for her would be, based on other Park Funkos, then added in something like $10 for shipping and tax from the website...unless I spend up to $75 for the free shipping, so in reality, I saved by buying her from Ebay! Or paid about what she would've been alone from ShopDisney. I rarely spoil myself outside of book purchases! But this week was a doozie! Lol.
And that, finally, was it for me this week! So some pretty happy book mail in the long run after a crummy week of general-ness. I was pretty happy come Saturday...but then you know the reality of tomorrow being Sunday sank in and remembering Monday comes after that kind of rained on my parade. Lol.
What did you all get this week?


Aug 17, 2019

Let's Discuss: Kids' Toys These Days

Wow! Half the month gone and I've yet to write a Discussion post of some kind! Since my mood has been a little south lately because of my job situation, I haven't been feeling really creative to write my own posts. But as I was writing up a meme post, a commercial came on for a toy and I was just left baffled!


Okay, I think I'm getting old because omg, kids these days! Lol. The toy in question was something called, Cry Babies: Magic Tears.

It's like you get a plastic little house with a baby in it that magically cries tears--likely when water is added and it came with a bottle, a pacifier, and likely a toy. But then all of a sudden the little girl playing with one, called the baby by its name and said something along the lines of him playing with his tablet.

A tablet.

A tablet for a BABY! Yes, I know it's toys and all that and time are changing, three year olds are playing with iPads and likely know more about them then their parents. I know when I was 2 years old I knew how to operate our VCR on my own! So I guess this is sort of the same thing.

It was just the fact that this was a BABY (doll) with its own tablet! I thought that was just a little too much. Even for a toy! Lol.

What baffles you about toys these days? Or is it just me that happens upon these things and thinks what is going on with kids these days?

And of course the gif I wanted to insert here doesn't exist! Typical. *eyeroll*

Aug 16, 2019

Book Blogger Hop

This meme is hosted by Billy at Ramblings of a Coffee Addict!
This week's question is: Do you read historical fiction? (submitted by Billy @ Coffee Addicted Writer

MY ANSWER: Does paranormal historical fiction count? Or steampunk? Those are the closest to historical fiction that I've read! Lol. I did read The Historian many, many years ago and enjoyed it back then! If I tried to read it now, I might have been bored by it. So best to leave it as a book I enjoyed in the past! Lol.

I feel like ones I've read that might be considered paranormal historical fiction are Gail Carriger's Parasol Protectorate series, Colleen Gleason's Gardella Vampire Hunters series, Kristen Callihan's Darkest London series. All books that are told in the past with what I believe in historical accuracy in places and whatnot...and who knows...maybe vampires were lurking around London! Lol!

Aug 15, 2019

Random Thursday

Losing words on how to introduce this chapter on Expressions, yet again, from The Little Book of Answers by Doug Lennox! There's still a few pages left in the chapter alone, plus another chapter after that. The pages are winding down though, so let's have at it!

(image borrowed from Breck's)
When we cover something in a thin layer of gold, is to "gild" it. Lilies are already in a "natural state of perfection," so gilding it would be excessive. Thus the expression, "gild the lily," kind of has no point. It's actually a misquote from Shakespeare's "King John," in which the king's barons describe his second redundant coronation "as throwing perfume on the violet or to gild the refined gold to paint on the Lily."

I feel like lots of things come back to Shakespeare. I'm not familiar with this expression...or that play of his either!

(image borrowed from Wikipedia)
We all know that we have five senses, though sometimes there's a rare "sixth sense" that is uncommon among the other five. The expression comes from a study in 1903, in which some blind people could perceive or sense objects in the room in a way that defied scientific understanding.

Hello Matt Murdock!

(image borrowed from American Book Collecting)
When something doesn't make sense to us, we say, "It's neither rhyme nor reason." This quote comes from Sir Thomas More, who, after reading something that a friend wrote, Sir Thomas told him that he'd have to rewrite it in order to make his point clear. After his friend did so, Sir Thomas read it again and approved of the changes, saying, "That's better, it's rhyme now anyway. Before it neither rhyme nor reason."

That's interesting! I'm wondering how accurate Doug's sources were about this one!

(image borrowed from Amazon)
When we say, "put a sock in it," it means we want whoever is talking to be quiet. This expression comes from the days of the earliest windup phonograph. This early acoustic record player didn't have electronic controls or any muting device to change the volume, so the only way to soften the sound was to stuff something into the horn. Ideally, something small and soft and easy malleable..such as a sock! So when one needs volume lowered, one simply needs to tell another "put a sock in it!"

That's an interesting piece of history!

(image borrowed from Alberta Farmer Express)
When we're headed to bed, an expression we might use is "hitting the hay." This expression dates back to when early sailors were headed to sea and had to provide their own bedding on the ship. This need was easily rectified by merchants who would sell canvas sacks stuffed with hay out on the docks. When he was headed to bed, the sailor would announce he was "hitting the hay." In early American settlements, these canvas sacks of hay were also used, so the saying was still the same even on land.

That's rather interesting too, though easily understood if you think about it! Lol.

Aug 14, 2019

Waiting on Wednesday

Can't-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted at Wishful Endings, to spotlight and discuss the books we're excited about that we have yet to read. It's based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by the fabulous Jill at Breaking the Spine
Respect the Legend. Idolize the Prodigy. Celebrate the Champion. But never underestimate the Rebel.

With unmatched suspense and her signature cinematic storytelling, #1 New York Times–bestselling author Marie Lu plunges readers back into the unforgettable world of Legend for a truly grand finale.

Eden Wing has been living in his brother’s shadow for years. Even though he’s a top student at his academy in Ross City, Antarctica, and a brilliant inventor, most people know him only as Daniel Wing’s little brother.

A decade ago, Daniel was known as Day, the boy from the streets who led a revolution that saved the Republic of America. But Day is no longer the same young man who was once a national hero. These days he’d rather hide out from the world and leave his past behind. All that matters to him now is keeping Eden safe―even if that also means giving up June, the great love of Daniel’s life.

As the two brothers struggle to accept who they’ve each become since their time in the Republic, a new danger creeps into the distance that’s grown between them. Eden soon finds himself drawn so far into Ross City’s dark side, even his legendary brother can’t save him. At least not on his own...
Super excited for this one!! And this cover is just SOOOO awesome too!! I love it!
TITLE: Rebel
AUTHOR: Marie Lu
PUBLISHER: Roaring Book Press
GENRE: YA Dystopian 
RELEASE DATE: October 1, 2019

Aug 13, 2019

Review--A Mad Zombie Party by Gena Showalter

The battle wages on.

Ali Bell and Cole Holland's crew of zombie slayers thought they'd won the war against Anima Industries, the evil company responsible for capturing and experimenting on zombies in an effort to discover the secret to immortality. In the last epic clash, the slayers lost many of their crew and closest friends. But Frosty, the ice man himself, has not recovered from one casualty in particular—the love of his life, Kat Parker.

On the path to self-annihilation, Frosty receives a message from beyond—Kat's spirit returns, insisting he partner with rogue slayer Camilla Marks. Frosty will do anything for Kat. Except that. Camilla is the one who betrayed them all, leading to Kat's death.

But when Anima rises from the grave to become a force the slayers may not have the strength to overcome, Frosty, Camilla and all the slayers will have to work together to survive. And one broken slayer will learn that sometimes, the line between hate and attraction is blurred...and the road to redemption isn't through revenge, but in letting go of the past and grabbing hold of the future.

So after way too long I finally picked up Gena Showalter’s conclusion to the White Rabbit Chronicles! While Ali’s story ended with The Queen of Zombie Hearts, the story at large wasn’t over yet. In A Mad Zombie Party, the story continues this time with Frosty and Milla at the helm.

My memory was sketchy at best as to what happened in this series since I read those as ARCs. Luckily, we get a bit of a recap of what happened in the last book to see where we are now. Milla was a slayer with Ali and her crew, and had to betray her friends by working with Rebecca Smith in order to save her brother, River. Needless to say, no one really forgave her, though no one, River included, truly knew the reasons Milla had to betray everyone.

Now Kat, a ghost aka witness comes to Milla and tells her that she must stay close to Frosty, that a vision from Ali showed her saving Frosty’s life. But since Frosty has been acting more in line with his namesake, you can imagine what he had to say to that. Milla was partly to blame for Kat’s death, though Kat holds no grudges against Milla, but getting Frosty to accept her presence will take some doing. That’s where Kat steps back in, if Frosty lets Milla stay by his side 24/7 and he does good deeds, she will visit him once a day and since Frosty is still heartbroken and missing her, he agrees.

Frosty was pretty much on a path to self-destruction before Milla showed up, trying to replace Kat without replacing her. Spending his nights with random brunette after random brunette, but that gets put to a halt when Kat steps back in however briefly she visits.

I wasn’t sure how I was going to feel about Milla. Perhaps it was better that I couldn’t really remember the series at large, for I felt like I could forgive her far quicker than I would’ve had I read this one right away. Milla has had the hardest of lives, not only did she betray everyone to save her brother, who then shunned her afterwards, but the scars run far deeper than that. She’s broken, and so too, is Frosty. I feel like that helped them to connect with one another, however slowly it happened.

I loved that there was an exceedingly slow burn romance between Frosty and Milla. There was unabashed hatred—on Frosty’s part—and then slowly, other feelings began to develop, there was a sort of acceptance among acquaintance, then something like friendship came about, and then, eventually, the feelings ran deeper and oh my wow. It’s been too long since I’ve read a Gena Showalter book and I forgot how spine-tingling her romances were, because oh my wow!!!

But the relationship development of the story wasn’t the only thing happening, obviously. Everyone believes that Anima is no longer a problem since its leader is without her memories, but it becomes very apparent that something hinky is going on with the zombies, something hinkier than usual when it comes to zombies! And it would seem that the evil organization is not so dead anymore and it may be playing a role in the slayers’ future.

I’ll admit that the pacing to this one was a little slow, but it wasn’t at all bad! I felt like things were always be built up to something more, and they were of course. There were so many things happening in the background in this book, that the pacing didn’t bother me at all. Just life getting in the way of my reading time bothered me! Lol.

What I really enjoyed about A Mad Zombie Party were the extra conclusions that were added in at the end! There are three letters from three integral characters that give you a peek at what happened to everyone in their HEA ending. Though one did present a puzzle I was DYING to know more about, but I think that was just a tiny little teaser that Gena intended! And since I read the B&N special edition, I got another bonus scene of a happy moment among the slayers. Needless to say that this book was perfect!

I had missed Ali and the gang so much over these years and I never even realized how much until I started reading this one! There pretty much wasn’t anything about this book that I would want changed. It was a flawless read from start to finish and I can’t wait to read more of Gena’s books in the future!

Overall Rating 5/5 stars


Teaser & Top Ten Tuesdays

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by Purple Princess of The Purple Booker.

Here are the rules:

1. Grab your current read
2. Open to a page

3. Pick out 2 lines that are SPOILER FREE
4. Name the title, author, etc.

"'Again, I'm sorry,' Kat whispers. 'I wish... Well, it doesn't matter, does it. Wishes mean nothing. Actions mean everything.' Then she, too, is gone." p 360


TITLE: A Mad Zombie Party
AUTHOR: Gena Showalter
PUBLISHER: Harlequin Teen
GENRE: YA Paranormal
RELEASE DATE: September 29, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

This week's topic is:  Book Characters I’d Love to Be Besties With (submitted by Michelle @ Pink Polka Dot Blog)

*in no particular order

10. NINA--I loved Nina in Six of Crows, planning to read King of Scars once I have the sequel in hand as that's what I did with SoC too! Nina was feisty and just an overall cool character! I'd totally be her BFF!
9. CHARLEY DAVIDSON--another heroine I fully adore! She's sarcastic and I love her sense of humor! She can be serious when she has to, so she's not all jokes and games, but for the most part she is! I need to live it a little and Charley would so help me do that!
8. GEORGINA KINCAID--she works in a bookstore. Need I say more?

7. KATE--Kate was the quiet girl and I myself was sort of the quiet girl growing up too. I was more vocal with the few friends I had here and there. So I think she and I would've gotten along splendidly. Plus I would have loved to learn magic from her too!
6. ARI & JANCO--because you can't be friends with one and not the other! These guys are the different sides of the same coin! I love these two together! I feel like they could've been brothers almost!
5. KATY--any surprise there?

4. RACHEL MORGAN--Rachel was one of the first adult heroines I read and I love her for that! She was pretty much the heroine I enjoy from my YA reads, except, you know, she's an adult! As a bonus, I would be able to hang out with Jenks too, who is a riot!!
3. JESSICA--she was my idol in my youth, plus I felt like we had a lot in common back then too! So yeah, I'd totally be besties with her!
2. CRESS--I just loved her! She had the total Rapunzel vibe going, though I envy her tech skills. It's also good to be friends with a computer wizard. Plus her social nervousness is like my own sometimes, so we'd get along splendidly!

1. TELLA DRAGNA--naturally would be one of my BFFs too! We're a lot alike I think. Though she might be more bold and daring then me, but I want to be like that too, so she'd help out with that!