Sep 30, 2019

ARC Review--The Burning Shadow by Jennifer L. Armentrout

When Evelyn Dasher crossed paths with Luc, she was thrown headfirst into the world of the Lux—only to discover that she was already far more involved in their world than she ever suspected.

Because the Luxen aren’t the only ones with a hidden past. There’s a gap in Evie’s memory, lost months of her life and a lingering sense that something happened, something she can’t remember and nobody is willing to tell her. She needs to find out the truth about who she is—and who she was. But every answer she finds only brings up more questions.

Her search for the truth brings her ever closer to Luc, the Origin at the center of it all. He’s powerful, arrogant, inhumanly beautiful, extremely dangerous…and possibly in love with her. But even as Evie falls for him, she can’t help but wonder if his attraction is to her, or to the memory of a girl who no longer exists.

And all the while, a new threat looms: reports of a flu-like, fatal virus that the government insists is being spread by Luxen. A horrifying illness that changes whoever it touches, spreading panic across a country already at its breaking point.

#1 New York Times, USA Today, and internationally bestselling author Jennifer L. Armentrout returns to the world of the Lux with this steamy, shocking second installment of the Origin series that will leave readers reeling.

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

I was elated to return to the Lux World with Jennifer L. Armentrout's latest, The Burning Shadow! We continue Evie and Luc's adventures in trying to figure out what is going on in the world now that the war is over and that Evie knows who she used to be and what that means for her and Luc.

Evie is doing the best she can dealing with the fact that the life she thought she was living wasn't entirely truthful. She used to be Nadia and had this whole other life before she got sick and was taken to Slyvia Dasher to be healed. She and Luc have been taking things slow, they're not quite a couple yet but it feels like they get one step closer to that title every day!

Evie has been noticing a lot of her friends have been getting sick and it's not ust your average flu. It's something very different and dangerous. People are dying from it. Then there's April, who used to be a friend of hers but is now pretty much the exact opposite with her war against Luxen raging higher and higher every day. 

What you need to know about this book is that the stakes are rising higher and higher with every chapter! Just when you think things have hit the lowest of the low or the danger and intrigue has reached its pique, you will soon learn how very wrong that notion is!

It's always near impossible for me to review a book of Jennifer's! Mainly because I love every minute of it and it's hard to really get a coherent thought out of my head and onto web-paper here so that you all can know how incredibly amazing this book is!

I was blown away with The Darkest Star! Luc was a favorite secondary character from the Lux books, how could he not be? And I was happy to see more of him and Evie in this one! I was also thrilled that Daemon, and even Dawson, Dee, and Katy too made appearances in this one! It really just brings everything home in the Lux world when these two worlds collide...though they are the same world, just different casts of characters! You see what I mean about being coherent? Lol!

The pacing to this one was pretty on par! There was a great buildup of mysteries all around! First there's one then another, and then things really begin to escalate in another secret of sorts and whoa, just whoa! My mind is totally blown away, needless to say!

Naturally, with any JLA book there was the perfect amount of romance. Evie and Luc take things slow, but it makes the moments they do share together all the more swoon-worthy! I love Luc's patience with Evie. You could almost say Evie has a bit of an identity crisis what with her used to be Nadia and all. She's not sure who she is or who Luc is really in love with. Well, that particular answer is cleared away fairly early and let's just say that Luc is pretty much an ideal boyfriend. He's so sweet with Evie that I was definitely swooning a bit.

The end was pretty spectacular as well. While things aren't nicely resolved, they are placed in a nice pausing moment...and then the jaw-dropper of a cliffhanger comes along, but I digress.While the agonizing wait for the next book will be traumatic with the extra waiting I have, I feel like we're at least in a good place for a break, much like some TV season know, ones that are a good pausing moment but ones you still want to desperately continue. 

The Burning Shadow is yet another reason to adore Jennifer L. Armentrout's books, if you haven't already! It's a story filled with excitement, adventure, mystery on top of mystery, and of course some sizzling romance! With any JLA book, you can expect to have an enticing and unputdownable read and The Burning Shadow is no exception!

Overall Rating 5/5 stars

The Burning Shadow releases October 8, 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:

Wicked Hour by Chloe Neill (ARC)--review to come at a later date

Currently Reading:

Mother Knows Best by Serena Valentino

What I Plan to Read Next:

Batman: Nightwalker (Graphic Novel) by Marie Lu & Stuart Moore
Ill. by Chris Wildgoose (ARC)

Other Posts of Interest:


Sep 29, 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 was another stressful week. The interview I ended up having on Thursday was a bomb, the position had already been filled. So that was a bummer. I had another one call me and I returned the call and left a voicemail and didn't hear back from them the next day, so I'm trying not to turn to dark thoughts about what that could mean. I've another interview on Monday, but was asked to dress "business professional" which already worries me as my clothes are probably more along the lines of business casual, but still nice. The last time another company talked to me about what they considered "professional" it was all skirts and dresses or slacks...which I've black pants but they are not what you would call "slacks." So I'll give it a try with what I've got and still look decent enough and see how it goes.

Book week wise this week wasn't too bad! I added again to my Caraval collection! Yeah, I know. I went on a binge awhile back and now they all seem to be trickling in! Lol. I think I'm just waiting on 2 more that are coming from other countries...

Here's what I bought:

Rules for Vanishing by Kate Alice Marshall
The Tenth Girl by Sara Faring
Archangel's War by Nalini Singh--I am sooo behind in this series, but I still buy them as they release! Lol.
Capturing the Devil by Kerri Maniscalco--since Kerri canceled her tour, I decided to order a book from her store so I can have a signed copy! I'll have two in the long run, but once my preorder gift comes along, they'll be different covers! :D

And then for the Caraval collection....

Caraval by Stephanie Garber--the Lithuanian edition!
Legendary by Stephanie Garber--the Dutch edition!

For review I received:

Batman: Nightwalker (Graphic Novel) by Marie Lu & Stuart Moore
Illustrated by: Chris Wildgoose (ARC)


This week I won:

Amazon Gift Card for winning the August Series Enders Challenge Monthly Giveaway!

THANK YOU Sandy from Somewhere Only We Know!

Other bookish goodies received:

My preorder gift for Ninth House came! I was surprised with how quickly it came! The book isn't even out yet! Lol.
THANK YOU Flatiron Books! 
My September Fairy Loot box!! This one was pretty cool! Though one item got a little messy an left residue over everything. Thankfully it was an easy cleanup!
 Cool things I bought:
The Handbook for the Recently Deceased! 
and look...
 It's a hidden book box!! I thought this was too cool, so I hand to order it!

And then I was at my favorite indie bookstore yesterday and saw this cute little sign that made me laugh and I had to buy it!
And that was it for me this week! What did you get?

Sep 27, 2019

Challenges Wrap-up: September

CHALLENGE 1: 2019 New Release Challenge


But that's okay, because I already met my goal for this one!

CHALLENGE 2: The Backlist Reader Challenge 2019

Smoke in the Sun by Renee Ahdieh (6/5/18)
Nightblood by Elly Blake (8/21/18) 
Fairest of All by Serena Valentino (9/18/09)
Poor Unfortunate Soul by Serena Valentino (7/26/16)
Mistress of All Evil by Serena Valentino (10/3/17)

CHALLENGE COMPLETED & SURPASSED!!! I did it! I completed all my challenges for this year!!

CHALLENGE 3: 2019 Discussion Challenge

Not one of my best months for discussion, but I did surpass my challenge AND made it to the top tier. So I'm not going to berate myself for that!
CHALLENGE 4: 2019 Series Enders Reading Challenge

Smoke in the Sun by Renee Ahdieh (Flame in the Mist Duology)
Nightblood by Elly Blake (Frostblood Saga)

Added on more finished series to my my goal of 5! Or was it 3 and I upped it to 5...? Regardless, I surpassed the tier I aimed for!

And I've since passed my Goodreads goal of 50 books so I say I did pretty darn good for having my reading habits change drastically this year and I haven't even found a new job yet that likely won't have any downtime!

Book Blogger Hop

This meme is hosted by Billy at Ramblings of a Coffee Addict!
This week's question is: Have you ever wished that there were official government bookish holidays, and that, by law, employers HAD to give their workers a paid day off? If so, what kind of bookish holiday would you like to have? (submitted by Maria @ A Night's Dream of Books)
MY ANSWER: Oh that sounds delightful! I think there definitely should be a Booklover's holiday where all certified booknerds get the day off to stay home and read!
Proof of booklover's status would be given by virtual tours of one's bookshelves be they real or electronic and all the other bookish goodies one has!
Any paid holiday where I can stay home and read is a blessed idea but having one for booklovers particularly would be wondrous!!

Sep 26, 2019

BLOG TOUR: Unearthed by Cecy Robson + GIVEAWAY!!

Today marks the release of Unearthed the first novel in Cecy Robson's new Death Seeker Urban Fantasy series featuring fae,the death, and other supernatural creatures. Come check out the book, enter to win a fun giveaway and order your copy of Unearthed

Fae was once a flourishing paradise. Until Death turned greedy and destroyed it, targeting the creatures who inhabited it. Those who survived escaped to Earth’s realm, but Death wasn’t far behind...  

Olivia Finn is just another pixie trying to blend in among humans and hide from the death hounds who devoured her family. Clinging to the talisman that keeps her veiled from those who hunt her, she believes she is safe...Until Death finds her and discovers she’s immune to its grip. 

Now that Olivia’s power is unearthed, she is sought by Fae who see her as their savior and stalked by dark entities compelled to destroy her. Can she trust the King of the Dead who has sworn to train and protect her? Or should she obey her instincts that warn he desires more? 

Olivia can no longer hide from Death. To survive, she must seek it. 

Amazon | B&N | iTunes | Kobo 


Excerpt from Unearthed
…in the Glen a nightclub where the Fae like to gather 

Lights flash and magical mist pours across the dance floor, allowing privacy to those desperate for touch. Fae aren’t plentiful, and neither are establishments for us to gather. That’s what makes the Glen fun. It doesn’t just bring my kind together, it frees us. No glamour, no pretending. We discuss magic and the old realm, curse Death for destroying it and celebrate our survival. 

With a shimmy and a shake, lavender and silver wings sprout from Dahlia’s back. She stretches, relishing the feel of simply being herself. She winks at me, her glimmering lavender eyes and lips radiant. 

A drunk mountain troll stumbles between us. She releases my hand, allowing him through before clasping my hand and guiding us through the gyrating swarm of bodies. “Let’s have a drink, darling.” 

I squeeze her hand. Fae are affectionate beings. In the human world, we cage our need to caress, embrace, and make love. It’s a way to keep our identities secret and another way to prevent Death from finding us. 

Bill’s broken glamour was a result of a stolen kiss. It revealed his form to a human and worst of all damaged his talisman. Our talismans remain the only way to hide from those who hunt us. Without them, it’s a death warrant with our executioners often seconds from being collected. 

A banshee sprints away from the bar and through the swarm of Fae. With all the grace of a swan, she leaps into the air and straddles the male who entered behind us. “David!” she screeches. “Sorry,” she adds when we groan and cover our ears. 

“David” loses his tiny accountant persona, morphing into a giant cyclops with a long blond Mohawk. He laughs, catching the banshee when her legs break free of his widening waist. 

She screeches. Again. The thought of that voice in the throes of passion makes me cringe. “David is going to need serious earplugs to get through the night,” I mutter. 

Dahlia giggles, her laughter like wind chimes in the soft breeze. “Perhaps. But it will be worth it, darling,” she sings. 

©Unearthed, Cecy Robson, LLC September 2019

About Cecy Robson
CECY ROBSON is an international and multi-award-winning author of over twenty-five character driven novels. A registered nurse of eighteen years, Cecy spends her free time creating magical worlds, heart-stopping romance, and young adult adventure. After receiving two RITA® nominations, the Maggie Award, the Award of Excellence, and a National Reader’s Choice Award nomination, you can still find Cecy laughing, crying, and cheering on her characters as she pens her next story. 

Giveaway Cecy Robson will give one lucky winner a $50.00 US Amazon Gift Card. a Rafflecopter giveaway


Random Thursday

Let's get back to fun Trivia facts from The Little Book of Answers by Doug Lennox! This chapter is perfect for this meme of mine as the trivia facts are all so random! There's no rhyme or reason to the ordering of these it seems! Lol.

(image borrowed from Amazon)
Ever wonder why local phone numbers never start with the number 1? It goes back to the original dial telephone that sent out "clicks" for each number dialed. One click for 1, two clicks for 2 and so on and so on. Zero was reserved for the operator. Number 1 was never used because the early switching systems read every signal as beginning with one click regardless of the number you were dialing. Basically, no phone number could start with a 1 and this continues today simply out of tradition.

Weird. I guess I never thought about it!

(image borrowed from Wikipedia)
Ever wonder how the prestigious Eastern schools of Harvard, Yale, Princeton, and Columbia earned the name the Ivy League? It's not because of their ivy covered buildings either. These schools were originally called The Interscholastic Four League, however, "four" was always written in their Roman numeral format--IV. By the end of WWII the league expanded to include Brown, Cornell, Dartmouth, and the University of Pennsylvania, making the four now eight. But instead of changing the name the league decided to spell the name the way it was being pronounced, and so the schools became known as the "Ivy League."

I honestly never gave thought to this before. It's rather interesting when all is said and done!

(image borrowed from BioLogos)
A man's Adam's Apple earned the name from an ancient embellishment on the story of Adam and Eve. When Adam ate the forbidden fruit--which is said to be an apple--a large piece of it got stuck in his throat and remained there, forming a lump. It's said that this lump is to be an eternal reminder of his humility in the eyes of God.

While I never really gave thought to this, it totally makes sense when you think about it! Lol.

(image borrowed from Youtube)
Courage and bravery are both acts of valor and imply a strength and fearlessness, however there is a subtle difference between the two words. "Courage" comes from the French word "coeur" meaning heart. It's the quality of a person's character that allows them to carry through a difficult course. "Bravery" comes from the Spanish word "bravado" meaning a single or spontaneous act of valor. It's not a planned action, but simply a knee-jerk reaction that happens often during a crisis.

Wow. That's surprising! I always thought the two words were more or less the same. And oh wow, "coeur" means heart in French? I live on the edge of Creve Coeur which loosely translates into "shattered heart" and the logo beneath it is a broken heart. Never really thought to look that up. How depressing.

Sep 25, 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

Experience Feyre Archeron's journey all over again with the beautiful collector's edition of A Court of Thorns and Roses, the seductive first book in the #1 New York Times bestselling series by Sarah J. Maas, featuring a deluxe new package, an updated map, ribbon pull, and more!

When nineteen-year-old Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution for it. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin-one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled their world.

As she dwells on his estate, her feelings for Tamlin transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie and warning she's been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But an ancient, wicked shadow over the faerie lands is growing, and Feyre must find a way to stop it or doom Tamlin-and his world-forever.

All of the magic of Feyre's epic journey and romance is reflected in this enchanting, collectible edition of A Court of Thorns and Roses, which comes complete with a cloth slipcase featuring unique foil art on the case and book cover, ribbon pull, brand-new interior page designs, metallic endpapers, and a newly illustrated map.

I know, I know. I'm freaking crazy to want this special edition book that I already own in its normal format. But it's so pretty! Lol. I hope to refrain myself from buying any other possible special edition books of this series. Book 1 is good to own...though book 2 was AMAZING! Then you might as well finish up the trilogy, right?? Lol. But I draw the line at those miniature books.

AUTHOR: Sarah J. Maas
PUBLISHER: Bloomsbury YA
GENRE: YA Fantasy
RELEASE DATE: November 5, 2019 

From New York Times bestselling author Neal Shusterman comes the thrilling conclusion to the Printz Honor–winning series Arc of a Scythe.

It’s been three years since Rowan and Citra disappeared; since Scythe Goddard came into power; since the Thunderhead closed itself off to everyone but Grayson Tolliver.

In this pulse-pounding conclusion to New York Times bestselling author Neal Shusterman’s Arc of a Scythe trilogy, constitutions are tested and old friends are brought back from the dead.

I still need to read the second book but I loved the first one, so I am pretty sure I will enjoy the rest of the series too!

TITLE: The Toll
PUBLISHER: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Children
GENRE: YA Dystopian
RELEASE DATE: November 5, 2019


Sep 24, 2019

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.

 "My heart pounded, as if it understood something that the rest of me hadn't yet. 'What kind of prince do you want to be?'

He looked up at me, blue eyes shining as if they were lit from within. 'The kind that's good enough for you.'" p. 69*

*Quote comes from the ARC, therefore it and its page number are not final. 

TITLE: Wicked Hour
AUTHOR: Chloe Neill
PUBLISHER: Berkley Books
GENRE: Urban Fantasy
RELEASE DATE: December 3, 2019 

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 On My Fall 2019 TBR

*in no real particular order, lol
**not counting review books as those will be read in between these and possibly stretching into winter!
***a good amount of these you'll notice are YALLFest authors, I'm going to read as many of them as I can (again with interspersing review books in between) before the big trip!

10. MOTHER KNOWS BEST by Serena Valentino
9. THE ODD SISTERS by Serena Valentino--can't believe I waited so long to read this series! It's amazing!
8. MIDNIGHT BEAUTIES by Megan Shepherd--since I still need to start her other two trilogies, I figure I'll just try to get this one read and call it good enough! Lol.

7. HEART OF ASH by Kim Liggett--waited too long on this one too!
6. THE LAST HARVEST by Kim Liggett--I've at least another two by her but might settle for two books read!
5. RETURN TO THE ISLE OF THE LOST by Melissa de la Cruz--I need to get back to this one to confirm I still adore it!

4. HEART OF IRON by Ashley Poston--figure I'll give this one a read and if it's a winner, the sequel too!
3. THE TENTH GIRL by Sara Faring--excited for this one too! I am hoping to be creeped out!
2. RULES FOR VANISHING by Kate Alice Marshall--not a YALLFest book, but one I am DYING to read!!

And speaking of DYING to read--prepare to be shocked and amazed...

1. THE BEAUTIFUL by Renee Ahdieh--not so shocked right? Lol!