Nov 30, 2023

Review--Lore by Alexandra Bracken


From the #1 New York Times best-selling author of The Darkest Minds comes a sweepingly ambitious, high-octane tale of power, destiny, love and redemption.

Every seven years, the Agon begins. As punishment for a past rebellion, nine Greek gods are forced to walk the earth as mortals, hunted by the descendants of ancient bloodlines, all eager to kill a god and seize their divine power and immortality.
Long ago, Lore Perseous fled that brutal world in the wake of her family's sadistic murder by a rival line, turning her back on the hunt's promises of eternal glory. For years she's pushed away any thought of revenge against the man--now a god--responsible for their deaths.

Yet as the next hunt dawns over New York City, two participants seek out her help: Castor, a childhood friend of Lore believed long dead, and a gravely wounded Athena, among the last of the original gods.

The goddess offers an alliance against their mutual enemy and, at last, a way for Lore to leave the Agon behind forever. But Lore's decision to bind her fate to Athena's and rejoin the hunt will come at a deadly cost--and still may not be enough to stop the rise of a new god with the power to bring humanity to its knees.


I've been meaning to read Lore by Alexandra Bracken pretty much since I got it in a Fairy Loot box in 2021! So better late than never I guess! Being a fan of Greek mythology I was excited to see what this one would be about. Granted, I did think it would be more of a "Medusa" book based on the US cover, but that's not what I got. Instead, I read about an intriguing battle between the gods and goddesses taking place on Earth in modern day.

Lore has been "out" of the gods' game for years. Ever since she lost her parents to the battles that take place she wanted no part of it and kept herself hidden from the gods for years. Several years ago, when her family was still alive, she was training to take part in it, but when she came home one day to find her family murdered, she decided she was done with it all.

Flash forward to modern day and Lore has recently lost her mentor and pseudo guardian. She's trying to get by in life by participating in underground fights to make a decent chunk of change. But when she sees an old friend as her next competitor, Lore is shaken as she thought Castor had died. He's come to her because he needs her help concerning the gods' game.

The choice to play or not is taken from her when Athena shows up at her doorstep injured and needing help. Teaming up with old friends and ones thought lost, Lore is ready to search for Athena's missing shield that will be a game changer in this war, but trouble lies all around them.

This was an interesting book. I admit, it wasn't smart to start such an epic story around the holidays where my reading time was sucked up with family time. So the extra reading time has kind of muddled with my memory recall since it took me way longer to read this than I anticipated. Perhaps that's why I might have felt lost at times or when I was reading with massive distractions all around me.

I'll admit that I thought the Medusa myth might come into play a little more than it did. Really there's only mentioning of Medusa since she is on the aforementioned shield. I guess in part, that was why I was a little disappointed with the story. Lore was not a relation to Medusa at all. 

There was a great deal of character development and building though. I really enjoyed getting to know this cast of characters. The ties to Greek mythology were fun too, if a little confusing at times since some of the OG gods and goddesses were already dead. Apparently when a god or goddess is killed in this war, their powers transfer to the one who kills them. So anyone can become a god if they can kill one. It was a little hard to comprehend over the course of the holiday and sparse reading. I think I would've done better had I not read this during a busy time.

There was a bit of romance between Lore and Castor that was sweet. I love the friends to lovers trope just as much as the enemies to lovers one! Especially if there's been time and distance within the friendship and the romance stirs up during a reunion (not the school type!). It was very sweet and satisfying.

Overall, I did enjoy the storyline and characters of Lore, but yeah, reading during a busy and time consuming time of year was not the wisest decision I ever made! Lol. But it was still an enjoyable read and one I highly recommend if you're looking for a book with Greek mythology essence in a more modern take.


Overall Rating 3/5 stars





Books from the Backlog #59


Books from the Backlog is a fun way to feature some of those neglected books sitting on your bookshelf unread.  If you are anything like me, you might be surprised by some of the unread books hiding in your stacks. This is a fun meme hosted by Carole's Random Life in Books!


Having been delighted by the bestselling debut, A Shade Of Vampire, readers are begging for more. In A Shade Of Blood, Bella Forrest transports you deeper into a unique, enthralling and beautifully sensitive story. Prepare to be lost in its pages...

When Sofia Claremont was kidnapped to a sunless island, uncharted by any map and ruled by the most powerful vampire coven on the planet, she believed she'd forever be a captive of its dark ruler, Derek Novak.

Now, after months of surviving an endless night, the morning sun may soon rise again for Sofia. Something has possessed Derek's heart and he offers her a gift no human slave has ever been given in the history of his cursed island: escape.

High school, prom and a chance to move on with her life now await her.

But will she be able to forget the horrors that steal her sleep away at night? ... or the feelings that haunt her for that tormented prince of darkness?


I added A Shade of Blood by Bella Forrest to my TBR in April of 2015. I had read her first book and really enjoyed it, so I downloaded the second book and there's it sat! And whoa. I didn't realize how long this book was at over 400 pages...on my kindle! As you might know I read extremely slow on my kindle for unknown reasons. I feel like it would take me ages to read this one let alone the rest of the series. Which is pretty long if I recall! 





Nov 29, 2023

Can't Wait 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.


When Ruby McTavish Callahan Woodward Miller Kenmore dies, she’s not only North Carolina’s richest woman, she’s also its most notorious. The victim of a famous kidnapping as a child and a widow four times over, Ruby ruled the tiny town of Tavistock from Ashby House, her family’s estate high in the Blue Ridge mountains. In the aftermath of her death, that estate—along with a nine-figure fortune and the complicated legacy of being a McTavish—pass to her adopted son, Camden.

But to everyone’s surprise, Cam wants little to do with the house or the money—and even less to do with the surviving McTavishes. Instead, he rejects his inheritance, settling into a normal life as an English teacher in Colorado and marrying Jules, a woman just as eager to escape her own messy past.

Ten years later, Camden is a McTavish in name only, but a summons in the wake of his uncle’s death brings him and Jules back into the family fold at Ashby House. Its views are just as stunning as ever, its rooms just as elegant, but coming home reminds Cam why he was so quick to leave in the first place.

Jules, however, has other ideas, and the more she learns about Cam’s estranged family—and the twisted secrets they keep—the more determined she is for her husband to claim everything Ruby once intended for him to have.

But Ruby’s plans were always more complicated than they appeared. As Ashby House tightens its grip on Jules and Camden, questions about the infamous heiress come to light. Was there any truth to the persistent rumors following her disappearance as a girl? What really happened to those four husbands, who all died under mysterious circumstances? And why did she adopt Cam in the first place? Soon, Jules and Cam realize that an inheritance can entail far more than what’s written in a will––and that the bonds of family stretch far beyond the grave.


I'm still a bit behind on Rachel's adult books but I've loved what I've read so far! While you in no way have to read these mysteries in order as I don't believe they connect whatsoever, I still fall into old habits! Lol!


TITLE: The Heiress
AUTHOR: Rachel Hawkins

PUBLISHER: St. Martin's Press
GENRE: Mystery
RELEASE DATE: January 9, 2023






Nov 28, 2023

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.


I can honestly say as I write this, that I do not know if I am still reading it! Lol! The holiday got away with me as I didn't read as much as I wanted to. We had extended family staying with us and I enjoy spending time with them, so sadly yes, the book was set aside. I kept picking it up whenever I was able to, so I am sharing a teaser from that even if I maybe might be reading something else by now! It's really tough to say at this point as I'm just halfway through as I write this! Lol.


"'I am well aware of the fact that she wants to rip my heart out and eat it,' Castor said. 'She's the best tracker in the hunt Better than any computer program--no offense.'" p 279








AUTHOR: Alexandra Bracken

PUBLISHER: Quercus (Fairy Loot Edition)
GENRE: YA Mythology
RELEASE DATE: January 1, 2021

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: Top Ten Books Set In/On/Near Water

*in no particular order

10. DAUGHTER OF THE PIRATE KING by Tricia Levenseller--on the water
9. THOSE WE DROWN by Amy Goldsmith--
on the water
8. LYING IN THE DEEP by Diana Urban--
on the water

7. CAPTIVATE by Vanessa Garden--in/under the water
6. TEMPEST RISING by Tracy Deebs--
I believe it was a combo of them all. It's been a few years and several hundred books!
5. TO KILL A KINGDOM by Alexandra Christo--
I believe it was another combo

4. ECHOES by Alice Reeds--near the water as they are trapped on an island
3. THE LAKE HOUSE by Sarah Beth Durst--
near a very large lake...think it was a Great it this year and already forgetting, lol.
2. SECRETS SO DEEP by Ginny Myers Sain--
a TBR read, but can say it's definitely near the water and possibly on?

1. JAWS by Peter Benchley--another triple combo since we get the shark's POV on occasion!

Nov 27, 2023

ARC Review--The Ruined by Renee Ahdieh


The stunning conclusion to the instant New York Times bestselling quartet that began with The Beautiful.

The Sylvan Vale and the Sylvan Wyld are at war. Now that the unsteady truce between them has been broken, lines must be drawn. In an effort to protect the weakened Winter Court, Bastien rallies powerful allies and friends in New Orleans to come to their aid.

Meanwhile, under protection alongside her injured mother in the Summer Court, Celine is uncertain of whom to trust. She cannot get word to Bastien, and does not understand why he has not returned. When she realizes war between the fey courts is imminent, she journeys with Ali in an effort to find the time traveling mirror and change their fate.

But when Celine's rivals realize Bastien has rallied his allies in the mortal world, they decide to take the fight to him.




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

I was beyond excited to read an advanced copy of Renee Ahdieh’s The Ruined! I read this series when it first started and fell in love since it’s about vampires! And it was set in New Orleans no less! I’ve visited the city twice and loved every minute of it.

The story more or less picks up where we left off. I read The Righteous as an ARC as well and with the delay of this one, my memory wasn’t the greatest about all the details timing wise. Pippa’s life was in danger, Celine’s mother was injured, Bastien was trying to get back to Celine and everything was a bit of a mess to say the least and that’s where we enter when the story starts!

I remembered being very invested with Pippa and her story last time. So having to wait so long to know her fate was agonizing! But wait we did and it made some sort of sense. Bastien meanwhile was given “custody” of the magic time traveling mirrors and is now the keeper of them. He learns they must remain secret even from those he cares about. It’s through them that he learns of a devastating possible future and if he doesn’t act quick, well, bad things would happen. 

War is looming. That much has been clear for awhile. It seems Bastien’s sister, Emilie has been scheming for years for this very thing to happen. I still really wasn’t clear on her end goal as her chapters were always few and far between. She was not a likeable character that’s for sure. Her chapters being shorter ones definitely made it harder to understand her completely. 

While I did enjoy this story, I found it a little lacking in some areas. Largely the romance part of the story. It’s not even that I needed more kissing but I felt like Bastien and Celine did not get much page time together. They were mostly apart and fighting to get to one another and then of course comes the wrench that thrusts between them driving them apart in a new way. 

Pacing wise, I felt like it had a bit of an up and down kind of run. There were times I felt things dragging and other times I was flying through the pages to see how things would turn out, only to jump to a new character’s point of view. 

The ending, while exciting and action packed did turn into a bit of a letdown. It just didn’t pan out the way I had hoped. I was hoping for a grand ending where we knew where everyone left off and would have adventures to come long after I closed the book. Sadly, that’s not the ending we got. We still had a decent ending one the provided hope so it wasn’t a total wash. 

All in all, The Ruined was still a finale worth waiting for. It wasn’t perfect but it still made for an entertains and exciting read! I do love this cast of characters and was thrilled to have one more adventure with them!

Overall Rating 4/5 stars
The Ruined releases December 5, 2023



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:


Sadly nothing was finished. :(

With family in town for the holiday I did not get my book finished like I had hoped.



Currently Reading:

Lore by Alexandra Bracken



What I Plan to Read Next:

Divine Rivals by Rebecca Ross

Other Posts of Interest:

Let's Discuss: Reading Order
Top Ten Tuesday
Can't Wait Wednesday
Books from the Backlog #58
Happy Thanksgiving!
Book Blogger Hop
Stacking the Shelves: The ACFTL Edition: Part Five & Finale