Mar 31, 2018

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.

I was thinking this would be a week of pretty much nothing...but totally turned out to be filled with quite a lot!! Lol! Though two of them were the Apollycon books that I ordered! I plan to actually attend this con one of these years!

Here's what I bought:

Sinister Shadows by Colleen Gleason--a .99 steal that I couldn't pass up! I still need to start the series though! And it turns out I have at least the first book under it's original title! If my Goodreads "want to read/TBR pile" is to be believed! Lol!
Danger's Halo by Amanda Carlson--a freebie read! I had to pass on reviewing it at the time because I wasn't sure if it was one I would like, and I was probably consumed with something at the time as well. But I can't say no to an Amazon freebie steal!
The Prophecy by Jennifer L. Armentrout--SIGNED!! Cannot wait to finally start this series!! Hoping to read it soonish...I'm thinking possibly May!
Moonlight Sins by Jennifer L. Armentrout--SIGNED! This is a keeper copy since I read the ARC! But I can never pass up getting a signed JLA book!! Lol!

Then I finally got the prize set of ARCs I won from Storygramtours and Fierce Reads! Cannot wait to read Mary's book!!

The Way You Make Me Feel by Maurene Goo (ARC)
Dance of Thieves by Mary E. Pearson (ARC)
Daughter of the Siren Queen by Tricia Levenseller
The Outcast by Taran Matharu (ARC)

PLUS! I got the super cool tote that has conversation bubbles on the back for "my favorite authors" to sign and "say" something! So cool!!

THANK YOU Fierce Reads & Storygramtours!

And then, if you didn't already know it, My name is Jessica and I am a book sleeve-aholic!

Both of these beauties came from Fandom Sleeves which is one of  my most favorite shops for book sleeves! This week's additions are a gorgeous purple/blue constellation map like print! It's so pretty! It's glittery too, which has resulted in a bit of a mess on my bedding, but hopefully I shook off all the loose bits! Lol!
The next one is a Six of Crows print that is amazing! I bought it in the mass market paperback size as I shockingly don't have any of those! So one was necessary. One. Yup. Any bets on for how long that lasts? Lol!!

Then I went to Hot Topic on Thursday (so proceeds would go to charity) and I had to buy a ScoobyNatural shirt! If you know me, I am a HUGE Supernatural fan! Have been since day 1!! I am also a Scooby Doo fan and have been since I was a kid and watched the reruns with my grandpa while growing up! Though I haven't seen many of the "newer" versions, I was and am still a fan of all the original ones! So this crossover was something I had been dreaming of for ages! The whole reason I started watching Supernatural wayyyy back in 2005 was that it had a great name, naturally! and that it reminded me of Scooby Doo! Except the monsters were real and there was no talking dog, sadly. But the show soon revealed all its other perks to make up for that! And Cas came along in season 4 so it wasn't too long before it was more Scooby-ish!

Sadly the shirt wasn't available in my first size choice. There was 1 and only 1 and it was a touch smaller than what I would prefer, but I figure I'll wash it in cold water and stretch it massively before wearing it and it should be fine. Plus I am checking the website constantly for a restock! Fingers crossed! Lol!

And that my friends was my awesome haul for the week! I was very, very pleased with myself! Lol! What did you all get?

Mar 30, 2018

Challenges Wrap-up: March

CHALLENGE 1: New Release Challenge

Ace of Shades by Amanda Foody (4/10/18)--Review to come next week!
The Dark Calling by Kresley Cole (2/13/18)
Lake Silence by Anne Bishop (3/6/18) 
Brightly Burning by Alexa Donne (5/1/18)--Review to come
Warlock's Embrace by Alyssa Rose Ivy (4/5/18) 

Not too bad! 5 books read! Nearly all were review books that I was most excited for too!

CHALLENGE 2: Mount TBR Reading Challenge

Feversong by Karen Marie Moning (1/20/17)
Four by Veronica Roth (7/8/14)
Torn by Jennifer L. Armentrout (7/19/16)
Brave by Jennifer L. Armentrout (12/11/17)

4 books done and pretty much wrapping up series too!

CHALLENGE 3: Discussion Challenge

Okay, I am slacking here but this past month was kind of busy! Lots of the weekends were occupied with events and whatnot that were time consuming! Hoping to get back on track in April with this challenge!

CHALLENGE 4: Series Ender Reading Challenge

Feversong by Karen Marie Moning (The Fever Series)
Brave by Jennifer L. Armentrout (The Wicked Trilogy)

So I am saying Feversong ends The Fever Series, but it's more ending with Mac's story. I didn't want to count Four was a series ender since it wasn't technically. It was more of an add on. But still, 2 series is pretty good!

Book Blogger Hop

This meme is hosted by Billy at Ramblings of a Coffee Addict!
This week's question is: How many book clubs do you belong to? If you do belong to an in-person book club, do you have meetings in the day or evening? Do you meet at someone's house or meet at a local restaurant or coffee house?  (submitted by Elizabeth @ Silver's Reviews)
MY ANSWER: I am not in a book club. I've never bothered to join one really, for different reasons. One, the book may not be of interest to me or I might have read it already. Or if I happen to read too quickly and by the time there's a meeting I'll already be 4 books onto something else! Lol! So yeah, book clubs were never really my thing!

Mar 29, 2018

Random Thursday

So it's the final day for Disney Facts Revealed: Answers to Fans' Curious Questions by Dave Smith! This was an interesting book, but sadly not what I was expecting! Too many fan "interest" questions wondering about random things rather than trivial. I guess that was what I was have these more iconic random questions that I could spout off for interesting factoids! LOL!

(image borrowed from Gravity Falls Wiki)
According to Alex Hirsch, the show's creator, Gravity Falls is animated by hand!

Kicking it old school! I like it! Need to see the rest of the episodes though...

(image borrowed from The Wrap)
The Walt Disney Company was originally called Disney Brothers but was later changed by Roy O. Disney. Roy did this because he said that "Walt was the creative one, it was Walt's name that should be on the company."

That's brotherly love right there!

(image borrowed from Wikipedia)
Walt's position title at the time of his death was executive producer.

(image borrowed from Pinterest)
I am fairly certain I found the right photo, but one fan asked in Walt ever wore the famous Mickey Ears. He did! And I found it where the book said it "should" be!

Also, did you know that Walt only went to high school for a year? Never went to college and look where he ended up!! For some reason I don't think I recall learning that he only went to high school for a year, but due to the timing it makes sense.

(image borrowed from giphy)
Like with Lady and the Tramp, Walt gave his wife, Lilly, a puppy in a hatbox. This was used as inspiration for Lady and the Tramp!! Lilly's puppy ended up being named Sunnee.

(image borrowed from eBay)
At the 20th Anniversary Surprise Parade at Walt Disney World there were special coins that were given out during the parade. The fan said she had a gold and purple one, and Dave says there was also green. Well, as you can see there was a blue one and (not pictured) a red one too! There was a similar parade in Disneyland called Party Gras Parade which ran most of the year in 1990. In Disney World the parade mentioned earlier ran from fall of 1991 until 1994 though Dave says they had different coins (possibly design?) in gold, blue, and green, but again also red! Not sure why he's not mentioning red. I KNOW there's a red one! LOL!

Mar 28, 2018

ARC Review--Warlock's Embrace by Alyssa Rose Ivy

Sometimes what you need the most has been there all along...

Delpha is terrified. She is terrified of accepting her sorceress side, she is terrified of never fitting in anywhere land or sea, but most of all she is terrified of allowing herself to be loved.

Cad is worried. He’s worried he’ll never have the life he’s always wanted, he’s worried that he’ll never outrun his ancestors betrayals, and most of all he’s worried he might lose Delpha forever.

When a deadly darkness threatens Willow Harbor, they must push aside their fears and create a magic only the two of them together can wield. 

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

Alyssa Rose Ivy returns to Willow Harbor in her second contribution to the series written by a slew of authors. In Warlock’s Embrace, it’s Delpha’s turn on the page. She was Mattie’s best friend in the first installment, Shifter’s Fate. Now we get to see the reasoning behind her wanting to movie in with Mattie to escape her on again, off again boyfriend, Cad.

Delpha has had to deal with a lot her in the past ten years. Her mother, an Oceanid, decided to embrace herself within the ocean after her husband (and Delpha’s father) left them with no clear reason. Delpha has struggled to let herself get close to people for fear of growing to care so much for them only for them to leave her. Her fears are very real and understandable, but Delpha also struggles to communicate her feelings with her friends and Cad.

Cad has loved only Delpha his whole life pretty much. He knows they are meant to be together, but trying to convince Delpha of that is easier said than done. But then an idea comes to him, courtesy of his friend Pax, that if he finds Delpha’s father and gets them to at least talk about what happened all those years ago when he left Willow Harbor, perhaps it could provide some closure for Delpha and allow her to accept Cad’s love.

Naturally, things aren’t going to happen as planned.

Delpha longs to find her mother and almost thinks she can hear her voice beneath the ocean when she’s underwater, but there’s something else under there. Something dark and powerful that wants to claim Delpha for its own.

As with any Alyssa Rose Ivy book, I found my back on familiar territory when it comes to incredibly likable characters. Delpha was a breath of fresh air when she breezed onto the scene in Shifter’s Fate, so I was psyched to see her get her own story. She maintains her spunky attitude for the most part, but we also get to see a deeper side to herself. One that’s been hurt by her parents in the past. I truly admire Delpha’s strength. I mean to basically have to raise herself—though she did have family friends in Willow Harbor looking out for her—pretty much since she was fourteen is incredible. I can understand why she held back with Cad, it’s a completely realistic feeling. And to have Cad try to find one man in all the world to try to help mend some fences for his sort of girlfriend was astounding! Though he did get a bit lucky in being able to find said father relatively closer than expected! Lol!

A minor issue I had with this one was that I never really quite caught onto what this “darkness” in the water was. Namely, our antagonist. I wasn’t clear on how a connection was formed with Delpha’s family, but evil see, evil do, it must be stopped! That much I did understand. I might have expected just a little more romance between Delpha and Cad than what we got, but mostly because I’ve been spoiled with all the other paranormal romance novels Alyssa has given us thus far. A change in pace isn’t a bad thing, just a little unexpected! Lol!

The ending to this one was sweet and cute! Just what you would expect from a standalone in a widespread series. I am not entirely certain if Alyssa is done with Willow Harbor, as I did initially think there would only be one book of hers in this quaint little town. Who knows?! I can say that I will definitely be picking up another one of hers should she be writing one!

Overall Rating 4/5 stars

Warlock’s Embrace releases April 5, 2018

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly blog post by Jill over at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights releases we're eagerly awaiting.

The highly anticipated sequel to Flame in the Mist—an addictive, sumptuous finale that will leave readers breathless from the bestselling author of The Wrath and the Dawn.

After Okami is captured in the Jukai forest, Mariko has no choice—to rescue him, she must return to Inako and face the dangers that have been waiting for her in the Heian Castle. She tricks her brother, Kenshin, and betrothed, Raiden, into thinking she was being held by the Black Clan against her will, playing the part of the dutiful bride-to-be to infiltrate the emperor's ranks and uncover the truth behind the betrayal that almost left her dead.

With the wedding plans already underway, Mariko pretends to be consumed with her upcoming nuptials, all the while using her royal standing to peel back the layers of lies and deception surrounding the imperial court. But each secret she unfurls gives way to the next, ensnaring Mariko and Okami in a political scheme that threatens their honor, their love and very the safety of the empire.

Definitely cannot wait to see how this series ends!

AUTHOR: Renee Ahdieh
PUBLISHER: G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers
GENRE: Fantasy YA
RELEASE DATE: June 5, 2018 

The Winter Solstice. In a week. I was still new enough to being High Lady that I had no idea what my formal role was to be. If we'd have a High Priestess do some odious ceremony, as lanthe had done the year before. A year. Gods, nearly a year since Rhys had called in his bargain, desperate to get me away from the poison of the Spring Court to save me from my despair. Had he been only a minute later, the Mother knew what would have happened. Where I'd now be. Snow swirled and eddied in the garden, catching in the brown fibers of the burlap covering the shrubs My mate who had worked so hard and so selflessly, all without hope that I would ever be with him We had both fought for that love, bled for it. Rhys had died for it.

I know it's only a novella, but I am super excited to read this one too!!

AUTHOR: Sarah J. Maas
PUBLISHER: Bloomsbury YA
GENRE: Fantasy YA
RELEASE DATE: May 1, 2018   


Mar 27, 2018

Review--Brave by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Ivy Morgan hasn't been feeling like herself lately. Not like anyone can blame her. After all, being held captive by a psychotic fae prince hell-bent on permanently opening the gates to the Otherworld is bound to leave some mental scars.

It’s more than that, though. Something dark and insidious is spreading throughout Ivy, more powerful than she could ever imagine... and it’s coming between her and the man she’s fallen deeply in love with, elite Order member Ren Owens.

Ren would do anything to keep Ivy safe. Anything. But when he makes a life altering choice for her, the fallout of his act has far reaching consequences that threaten to tear their lives apart.

If Ivy is going to have any hope of surviving this, she must put aside the hurt and betrayal she feels, and work with not only those she loves, but with an enemy she would rather kill than ever trust. War is coming, and it soon becomes clear that what Ivy and Ren thought they knew about the Order, themselves, and even their enemies, has been nothing but a cluster of dangerous, deadly lies.

Ivy knows she must be more than just brave to save those she loves--and, ultimately, to save herself.

Because behind every evil fae Prince, there’s a Queen….

Another Jennifer L. Armentrout series is completed! The Wicked trilogy was one I took a fast liking to because of the fast-paced plot and amazing characters! I’ve never met a JLA character I didn’t love! Well, except for the bad guys, but I love to hate them if that counts! Lol! Brave brings an end to Ivy’s story and it was one I fully enjoyed and feel saddened that it’s over already, but that can be said with any series finale I think!

Ivy is having a rough go of things lately. She is safe at Hotel Good Fae with Ren, Tink, and an assortment of other fae who are actually good and don’t suck the life out of humans, yet Ivy seems to be suffering from PTSD in a way. She endured a lot of torture from the Prince, from Drake and it’s hard to shake that kind of experience off and away. She struggles with reconnecting with the ones she loves and trying to find some normalcy to her chaotic life. She was forced to feed off a human and that is only one of the things that has left her so shaken because she feels the cravings still.

Ivy’s personal struggles are only one of the obstacles she will have to overcome in this heart-racing finale. The even greater struggle will be finding a way to send Drake back to the Otherworld and closing the door between worlds permanently. Should be easy, right? Nothing is ever easy and when word gets out that Drake might be onto finding another Halfling, well, the time table to saving the world gets bumped up some.

This book kept me on the edge of my seat! As I said before, Ivy has to endure some personal struggles, some great changes are headed her way and that itself will be another set of obstacles to overcome. And “judgment day” is looming ever closer. But no one will be prepared for the game changing effects that occur about midway through. This totally shakes up the story and will set off a course for new events!

Jennifer holds back no punches whatsoever in this one. There were some seriously jaw-dropping moments in this one that had me gasping out loud! Like shouting expletives over the sheer shocking-ness of it all! You might just want to unhinge your jaws prior to reading this one to save you some time! Lol!

Naturally, there was still the same toe curling, spine-tingling romance to be had between Ivy and Ren. I’ve pretty much loved these two from the beginning! They aren’t a perfect couple and that’s what makes me love them even more because they have problems and they work through them. It might take them awhile to realize that they need to work through said problems in a healthy manner, but to err is human after all…even if Ivy is only half human!

As always Tink had me laughing in stitches. I sooo cannot wait to see how this will look in film. As I believe it’s to be a web series of some kind? Never watched one of those so not sure of what they are officially called and all that! Needless to say I will need to be looking into how to watch that in the near future!

The only thing that kind of nags at me is how the ending is a bit too open-ended for a series finale. Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying it totally ruins the book. It doesn’t. Not even close. But I guess as a reader, I like a little more concrete of an ending. I like to know where everyone is going and how they will be spending their time now that the danger/battle/fight is over. Here we don’t really get that. Though I can almost see why what with the conversation Ivy and Ren have in that final moment. Though it doesn’t really address what the other characters will be doing either, which I kind of would have liked to know! It’s only a mild irritation I have, truly nothing as I’m already figuring out how it will all turn out…in my head at least!

Brave was an incredibly wonderful finale to the Wicked trilogy! It embodies everything I love about Jennifer L. Armentrout books and paranormal titles! When you read this one you will walk away with the knowledge that you can never look at Troll dolls in the same way again! Bravo, Jennifer!

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.

"It's not like I had a death wish, but I...I just didn't feel like me anymore and I had no control. Not over my life, my fate, my purpose, or even my body." p 81

TITLE: Brave
AUTHOR: Jennifer L. Armentrout
GENRE: Paranormal New Adult
RELEASE DATE: December 11, 2014

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: Books That Take Place In Another Country

*in no particular order
**eek, this one will be hard! Fantasy countries count too, right? ;)

10. TIGER'S CURSE SAGA by Colleen Houck--well, this series starts out in the US but then they do a lot of traveling! India among them, plus mystical worlds too!
9. PARASOL PROTECTORATE SERIES by Gail Carriger--London of course! Though the series did stretch out to Egypt at one point too! Possibly another country as well, but my poor addled memory cannot recall!
8. THE IMMORTAL EMPIRE TRILOGY by Kate Locke--Britain! Really fuzzy memory here too, I just know it was in that area. I want to say England, but don't quote me on that! LOL!

7. THE FEVER SERIES by Karen Marie Moning--Ireland!
6. DOON SERIES by Carey Corp & Lorie Langdon--part Scotland and part Doon!
5. INTO THE DIM by Janet B. Taylor--Scotland!

4. BLACKHEARTS SERIES by Nicole Castroman--more England!
3. REAWAKENED SERIES by Colleen Houck--Egypt in parts!
2. WICKED AS THEY COME by Delilah S. Dawson--Land of Sang...yup, I am not stretching it! Lol! Too many books are taking place in England!

1. OLD MAGIC by Marianne Curley--winning here, for they are in Australia for most of the book and about 1/3 is in the past in...another country! Totally blanking on which one and my copy is buried in my closet!

Mar 26, 2018

It's Monday! What are You Reading?

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is hosted by Sheila at Book Journey. 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:

Brightly Burning by Alexa Donne (ARC)--Review to come at a later date
Four by Veronica Roth (4.5 stars)
We Can Be Mended by Veronica Roth (5 stars)
Torn by Jennifer L. Armentrout (5 stars)

Currently Reading:

Brave by Jennifer L. Armentrout

What I Plan to Read this Week:

Warlocks' Embrace by Alyssa Rose Ivy (ARC)

Other Posts of Interest: