Top #5 Novellas On My TBR

I didn’t ever read Novellas before Murderbot came out, unless you count fanfiction novellas, but those weren’t physical books that I could hold in my hands and read. Novellas weren’t an important thing to me, as much as the next big hefty book that had at least 300+pages. But now, there are lots of Novellas coming out, and I’ve discovered others that have captured my attention aside from Murderbot that I’m eager to read. I found the Binti scifi series, which I absolutely adore, though perhaps not as much as Murderbot, though it is close. Now these are some of the latest Novellas that I’ve come across, and each of them not only have pretty, pretty covers but fascinating storylines!

#1: Keeper of the Dawn

Keeper of the Dawn

{Click the title to go to the Goodreads page for a description of the book, same thing for the next five books.}

This is high on my list, and one of the first novellas that I’ve found as well. The cover is nice to look at, though not my favorite (Murderbot!) and the storyline is definitely right up there with things I love. And with a strong female character, or so it seems, I’m definitely wanting to get my hands on this little story.

#2: Temporary Duty Assignment
Temporary Duty Assignment

I rarely read romance, because most of the time it’s annoying and the characters are all mushy and it’s all smutty romance. It’s not my favorite category, but there are times when I’m in the mood for a good action/romance plot! This looks like one of those, and so I’ve added it to my list! I also really love this cover!

#3: A Glimmer of Silver
A Glimmer of SilverThis one sounds absolutely fascinating, and is water based! I love water based stories, especially science fiction water based stories! And it’s also a coming of age which is another favorite thing to read! I’m eagerly anticipating this one, and again, just look at that cover!

#4: Accelerants

Accelerants

This sounds like it’s more my thing, with lots of fantasy elements and  a girl who controls fire is always awesome. And might I just point out, yet again, how beautiful the cover is? I really love this cover, and it’s close to beating out my top favorites with how pretty that art is!

And last but not least:

#5: Agents of Dreamland
Agents of Dreamland

How can I not list one of my favorite authors on this list? Caitlin R. Kiernan is a huge fantasy author that I love, and didn’t realize that there was a novella of hers coming out until I started making a list of novellas to read. Now I’m eager to read this, and the title and the fact that it’s science fiction, my second favorite category to read, is making it even harder to wait in reading this novella!

 

And those are my #5 Novellas that I’m eagerly anticipating, now that I’ve done some research, I’m going to request quite a few from the library. Seeing as they are quite short, each of them about 100 pages or so, I’m thinking that these can be read quickly. If you have more suggestions for novellas that I haven’t listed here, feel free to post them in the comments! I look forward to hearing your thoughts!

Until next time,

-Pass Me That Book.

Advertisements

A Few Updates

I’ve finally gotten time to update my Anticipated Reads page! While it doesn’t contain every book that’s on my wishlist, it does contain several new things, so go check it out!

I’m also reading these books at the moment:

 

So reviews for these will come up soon as well. I’ve also been working on getting an agent for my novel, but so far no such luck.

How’s everyone else’s week going? Let me know in the comments!

Until next time,

Pass Me That Book.

Netgalley Review: Empire of Sand

EmpireofSandARC

Title: Empire of Sand
Author: Tasha Suri
Series: Book 1
Genre: Fantasy
Publisher: Orbit
Page Count: 500
Type of Book: ARC, Netgalley Read, Kindle Ebook
Review Word Count: 500
Rated: 5/5 stars

I think this might be one of my top #5 books of the year. I’m still in awe of this book that I’ve just finished reading. I read a few chapters here and there the past couple of days, but when I reached chapter fifteen, I didn’t stop reading for almost an entire day, and now it’s currently resting at 9pm at night. That’s a lot of attention from one book. I just couldn’t stop. Merh was such a fascinating, empathetic, and completely believable character. The world-building was breathtaking and enormous, and there was just so much going on in each chapter, it was almost bewildering. It was a grand, epic fantasy adventure that I’d been craving since I’d last read The Expanse, or Outlander, or even Harry Potter-but in a completely different and wholly unexpected way.

Merh struck a deep cord in me, with her trying to keep her family safe from the Emperor and his people, while avoiding her mother’s side of the family and striving to be the quiet, obedient daughter of the Governor. She’s strong, however, and likes to test the bounderies of what she can and cannot do. But things begin to backfire, when her mother’s roots begin to show…and she begins to loose control of the peace she’s carefully built for herself over the years. Her stepmother hates her, and wants her away from her sister, while her father is slowly growing away from her, in large parts thanks to her hateful stepmother. Things are taking a dark turn.

And then the story opens up into such a wild and emotional ride with so many things that I didn’t see coming that I can’t help but keep flipping page after page. It’s imaginative, and glorious to read such a tear-jerker and gut-puncher of a story. Prepare to have tissues on hand, I nearly cried a few times, and it takes a lot to make me cry over a book.

Warnings: minor character deaths, suggested rape, attempted annihaliation of a race, forced arranged marriage, characters that you will hate, and scenes that might make you cry…

I cannot tell you how much I enjoyed this book, and deeply thank Orbit for approving me of a copy. I read the description of the book, saw the line on the cover that read “magic is in her blood” and knew that this was going to be one of my all time favorites, and I’m thrilled to say that I was absolutely right. I’m planning on buying this book when it comes out, to add to my top favorites, it’s that good. Needless to say, I’m giving this book 5/5 stars for its beautifully written tale of love, danger, and magic.

Until next time,
Pass Me That Book.

ARC Book Review: A Scandal in Battersea

A Scandal in Battersea

Title: A Scandal in Battlesea
Author: Mercedes Lackey
Series: The Elemental Masters, Book 12
Genre: Fantasy
Publisher: DAW
Page Count: 300
Type of Book: ARC, Paperback
Review Word Count: 500
Rated: 4/5 stars
Notes: I haven’t read any of the rest of the elemental master series, but that doesn’t matter, because it’s reminiscent of Sherlock Holmes, so of course I had to read it. I *have* however, almost all of Mercedes Lackey’s books sitting on my shelves, so am a tremendous fan of hers. The Elemental Masters series is one my younger sister reads, and this is completely new to me but I plan on reading the others of this series soon.
I found this book to be most intriguing, mainly due to the Sherlock Holmes characters. I definitely enjoyed it, due to the more magical elements, and I liked reading Alexandre’s parts best, though I enjoyed all the characters overall. I did find the ending to be a bit rushed, and I was unsatisfied with how the author handled Alexandre’s last scenes, but aside from that I really liked it. It wasn’t as good as her Bardic Voices series, or perhaps her Joust series, but it was a fine a way to pass the time for a few hours regardless.

I’ve read Mercedes Lackey ever since I was about thirteen, when I first began diving into the fantasy genre after having read Lord of the Rings and the Wheel of Time. This was refreshing, with its promotion of LGBT characters, fascinating world-building schemes, and magical elements, I was hooked by this author for years to come. Granted, I hadn’t read much of her books lately, aside from the new arcs that I have received: The Hills Have Spies, along with another book too that I forget the name of…

But I digress.

This gave several nods to the BBC series of Sherlock, or so I thought. Including the ‘cabbie’, who picked up victims, Mycroft Holmes appearing just at the end of the book, and various other little nods that I rather enjoyed. I found that the author did a good job in paying homage to Sherlock, and loved the scene where he was infuriated about having magic countered against him, thinking it wasn’t fair, and considered it cheating.

My only real complaints were how she’d handled Alexandre’s untimely end, and how the ending itself felt rather rushed, which is why the book is getting 4/5 stars. Otherwise, I’m sure fans of Mercedes Lackey will definitely enjoy this new release of hers.

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book.

Book Review: The Tethered Mage

The Tethered Mage

Title: The Tethered Mage
Author: Melissa Caruso
Series: Book One
Genre: Fantasy
Publisher:
Page Count:
Type of Book: ARC, Kindle Ebook, Birthday Buy
Review Word Count: 500
Rated: 5/5 stars!!!
Notes: I’ve read this four times already!

Book Two is out, and I have yet to produce a review of this amazing book. Whoops. Let me correct that with a fresh new review of a book that I’ve already read four times. The first two I had to skim, because I didn’t have time to fully devote myself to this book, but now that I’ve read it again and again without skimming, I can fully appreciate the world that the author has given us. It’s unique, beautiful, and awesome. And I’m pleased that book two is released, and I don’t have to wait to go grab myself a copy.

I really enjoyed this book. It took me a while to figure out how to write this review, because I can’t really articulate this into words how much I really liked this book. I loved the main characters. I didn’t love the romance that sprang up, but it fit the story regardless so I let it slide. I did love all the world-building, the magical elements, the slow build up to that intense ending and how things got resolved…it all was very well delivered, and I found myself caring about the characters deeply, not to mention cheering them on as things spun out of control.

Overall, I’m giving this a 5/5 stars. I want to come back to this review, and work in more details too, because it seems like it’s lacking. It’s also been a bit since I’ve read the book proper, but I’m planning on yet another re-read, and immediately going to the review after doing so.

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book

Paperback ARC Review: Malice of the Dark Witch

SDC12731

Title: Malice of the Dark Witch
Author: R.D. Crist
Genre: YA Fiction
Series: Book 1
Page Count: 310
Publisher: ShoRic Publishing
Type of Book: Arc, Paperback
Rated: 5/5 stars
Review Word Count: 700
Notes: A perfect read to the start of the Fall Season, filled with witchery and magic!

I greatly enjoyed this book, to the point I lingered over it for four days, trying to stretch it out as much as possible. The writing was good, though there were a few typos here and there (as this was a proof copy, I’m sure that these will be corrected). I would also like to thank the publisher for sending me one of the last two copies that were available. I feel quite honored and lucky in being sent such a fabulous book!

I selected October to be filled primarily with witchy reads. Titles with the word ‘witch’ in it will be my main goal, but of course I will read all my other ARCs as well, for they are more pressing in such. As I read nearly 40 books last month, I’m planning to aim October for 50 books. I’ve already written out a list of all the books that I desire to read for the month of October, including finishing all the ARCs that I have on Netgalley, three books of which were just published and so quickly need to be reviewed!

I digress. I should be writing a review about this book, my apologies. First though, the warnings:

Warnings: loss of a mother, death of main and minor characters, bullying, lies and trickery, witchcraft, strong female characters, and tragic orphan back-stories.

This book told the story of Natalie and how she lost her mother. It starts off with her coming to terms with loosing her only living relative, and avoiding a dangerous man named Saul, with the help of her Aunt Ava. There are horses in this book (which was a nice surprise, I *love* books with horses), there’s plenty of magic, adventure, intrigue, and suspense. Natalie barely survives with the help of her Aunt Ava, as well as the school of orphans she is sent to. There’s so much more to the story, but I really don’t know how to put into words the kind of review that generally comes easily. This story was so well done, and I really empathized with Natalie, Emma, and all the other girls. At first I hated the school bully Melissa, but then she kind of grew into a bad-ass and I really loved her character! Mrs. Hag was also an awesome character, and made me think strongly of McGonagall, in some ways.

This is a story that I will be thinking of in days to come, because there were lots of quotes that I deeply felt true and beautiful, such as this one:

“Natalie felt herself run and breathe with Galla. She could feel Galla’s thoughts and communicate with her without speaking aloud. Even their hearts beat together. Natalie felt the freedom of true existence-the wonder of being a horse. Running this way was greater than any euphoria she had ever felt. They ran, sprang, and flowed with each other in synch-like a body and limb, entirely complimentary. Natalie lifted her head to feel the wind in her face. This was freedom, this was contentment.”

There’s a great deal of school and learning in this book about what it means to be a witch. There’s friendship between girls, there’s battles against evil. There’s even discussions about power, and magic. I liked the many different lessons that were scattered throughout this book, about what it means to control such power and how to use it properly, as well as the amount of time it takes to build up a spell.

This was definitely one of my top favorite books of the month of September, finished just a day before October starts. I cannot highly recommend this book enough for young readers, even for adults as there is so much within this book to read and learn and love. If you enjoy witches and schools for girls as well as orphans, then I think you will definitely love to read this particularly fine novel worthy of a 5 stars rating.

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book.

Hardback Book Review: Daughter of the Forest

Daughter of the Forest

Title: Daughter of the Forest
Author: Juliet Marillier
Series: Book 1
Genre: Fantasy, Adult
Publisher:
Page Count: 500
Type of Book: Hardback, Book I Own
Review Word Count: 500
Rated: 5/5 stars

Look at me go, reading 500+pages after I finished a 600+pages! Daughter of the Forest swept me away with its vivid characters, its in-depth plot, it’s breathtaking scope of world-building. I would rank this as highly as Naomi Novik’s “Uprooted”, because it’s just as beautiful, but instead of being just a stand-alone, this is a series.

Daughter of the Forest tells the tale of Sorcha, and while I loved Sorcha and her six older brothers, her father needs to loosen up and not be so hateful. Granted, his wife died, but that doesn’t give him the right to act like a complete and utter a** towards his children, especially the two youngest who looked the most like his beloved wife.

There’s plenty of magic to be had in this book, along with swans, women being awesome, bad guys, an adventure. There’s so much in this book, that I’m glad I own this because this means that I can do a re-read and see if I missed anything the first time around, which I have been known to do with great fantasy epics.

I really want to read more of this series, but sadly that will have to wait until my next venture to the library, or I find a copy of book two on book outlet. I hope there are some available in hardback edition, to complete the series, because this would be one of my favorite series to own, I think.

To conclude, I’m giving this a 5/5 stars as it’s a breathtakingly beautiful fantasy that I know I will remember for some years to come.

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book

October Wrap Up #1: Fantasy and Stuff

I’ve read a lot of books this past week. And in the next couple of weeks there are two Book Fairs going on, which means purchasing/getting even more books to read! I can’t wait! But in the meantime, here are the books I’ve read in the last week, and to save space as well as time, I won’t post pictures this time around, but wait until the last week of the month to post all the pictures, as well as links to the reviews!

Reap the Wild Wind-600+pages 4/5 stars

Daughter of the Forest-500 pages 5/5 stars

Bewitching Season-300 pages, 3/5 stars

Empire of Sand-500 pages, 5/5 stars

Pride-300 pages, 2/5 stars (DNF)

I read a lot this past week! I’m really proud at accomplishing three books that were about 500 pages apiece, that’s over 1,000 pages read this week! To answer people’s questions as to how I read so much, I read in every spare moment that I have on my phone, on my kindle, on my laptop, and with physical books. I read constantly, and absorb a lot of the story to be turned into a review later. I’m a prolific reader, as well as a writer, and at times if I don’t like the story, I speed-read too.

But those are the books that I’ve read this past week! This also marks my 200th post, so I’m going to come up with a special post here soon, if people want it. If not, then I’ll just let it slide until I reach my 500th post on my blog.

Until next time,

-Pass Me That Book

 

My Ambitious October TBR

This month is yet again filled with ARCs and New Releases, some of these new Releases that I still haven’t gotten around to reading yet. I just finished reading two massive books, however, so maybe this month will go even better! Here are the books that I really hope to get to this month, the ARCs being more important than the New Releases, as per usual.

 

Almost fifty books. I also have a bunch of requests I’m hoping to get that are on Netgalley and Edelweiss, and I just discovered a cool place called Booksprout that has arcs as well, and there’s a bunch of arcs in my email that I still haven’t gotten to either, and this will clearly be a month of heavy reading, in between writing book two of a trilogy/series that I’m currently working on as well!

So that’s my ambitious TBR pile for October, what books on here are you guys hoping to read, or are you reading other books that I haven’t yet heard of? Let me know in the comments!

Until next time,

Pass Me That Book

Hardback Book Review: Reap the Wild Wind

Reap the Wild Wind

Notes: Fixed the cover as well as the title of the review thanks to WayTooFantasy! Thanks for the assistance!

Title: Reap the Wild Wind
Author: Julie E. Cznezda
Genre: Science Fiction, Adult
Series: Book 1
Publisher: DAW
Page Count: 600
Type of Book: Hardback, Book I Own
Rated: 4/5 stars
Notes: A slow burn science fiction novel that leaves the book wide open for book two.

I liked this book. I didn’t love it, but the writing was decent, and while it seemed to take forever to finish, I also enjoyed the slow-building plot, the characters, and the world-building involved. The aliens were definitely alien enough for me to have trouble picturing them, and the world was incredible with lots of climbing trees, and avoiding nasty monsters, and just general awesomeness all around.

I really liked this book, but again, it’s not going to be one of my all time favorites I think. I can’t say why for sure, because I don’t know myself. It’s a good book, there’s plenty of action and adventure and survival to be had within, and there’s loads of science as well as fiction too. It’s got everything that a person could want. So I don’t understand why I didn’t love it-perhaps because I just wasn’t connected enough to the characters? Granted, I came to really like them about halfway through the book, when things really started getting interesting, and there was a lot more action going on…

I’m giving this a 4.5/5 stars. Perhaps book two will make me like the series even more? I hope so. I plan on requesting it at the local library, since I don’t own a physical copy. I’m glad to have read this one, and knocked it off my tbr shelf. It took me four days to get through 600+pages, something that doesn’t usually happen, but then there was a lot of backstory, describing everything, and characters to get through. I still look forward to book two, however. Let’s hope it’s even better than the first book!

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book.

September Reads: Almost 35 Books!

I can’t believe I was so close to reaching 50 books read in the month of September! And so many of them were such high rankings! This month was a real roller coaster ride of reads, and I have the feeling that October is going to be even better!

{Note: I don’t have covers for all the books I’ve read.}

 

Books Read for September

1.Priest of Bones| 5/5 stars
2.A Brazen Curiosity| 4/5 stars
3.The Highlander Who Protected Me| 4/5 stars
4.The Phantom Tree| 2/5 stars
5.Begone the Raggedy Witches| 4/5 stars
6.Undertow (Book Two)| 4/5 stars
7.Heart of Mist| 4/5 stars
8.Daisy’s Run| 4/5 stars
9.Eros| 4/5 stars
10.The Lady in the Cellar| 3/5 stars
11.Eve of Eridu| 4/5 stars
12.Miss Copp Just Won’t Quit| 4/5 stars
13.Sea Witch| 3/5 stars
14.The Wedding From Hell Part 1| 3/5 stars
15.The Wedding From Hell Part 2| 3/5 stars
16.Lost| 4/5 stars
17.Arclight| 4/5 stars
18.A Thousand Shall Fall| 2/5 stars
19.Game of Secrets| 5/5 stars
20.Hounded| 5/5 stars
21.Prisoner of Night and Fog| 4/5 stars
22.School of Wizardry| 3/5 stars
23.Stupid Perfect World| 3/5 stars
24.The Late Great Wizard| 5/5 stars
25.Worldshaper| 4/5 stars
26.The Magicians (re-read)| 5/5 stars
27.A Darker Shade of Magic (DNF)| 3/5 stars
28.A Necromancer’s Romance| 4/5 stars
29.Dark Wolf (Book One)| 3/5 stars
30.Malice of the Dark Witch| 5/5 stars
31.The Prince of Shadows (re-read)| 5/5 stars
The Iron Tower Trilogy (re-read)| 5/5 stars

I really enjoyed all of these, aside from a couple of them, and am definitely hopeful to read as many books if not more for the month of September. I’ve also started Instagram as PassMeThatBook, you can find the link at the bottom of my webpage, or just search my blog name and it should come right up! I don’t have a lot of pictures on my :Instagram yet, but I’m slowly building up on that as well.

Until next time,

-Pass Me That Book!

Kindle Ebook Review: Larkspur

 

A Necromancer's Romance

Title: A Necromancer’s Romance

Author: V.M. Jaskierma

Series: Book 1

Genre: Fantasy Romance

Page Count: 50

Publisher:

Type of Book: Novella, Kindle Ebook, Temporary Freebie

Review Word Count:

Rated: 4/5 stars

Notes: Darker than what I typically read, but still worth it!

This was a strange, dark, and lyrical tale of a necromancer. It’s a bit unusual, as I typically am not a dark romance reader, though I’ve heard of this from a few friends and decided to give it a try.

Pierre Salvador is a surgeon and the heir to a duchy, returning to court after years away at University. Now the childhood friend he left behind has grown-up–and is still not wed. But she does not know of his dealings with Mora, the Lady of Death, or what the jealous goddess wants him to do in return for her dark magic.

~Description from Goodreads

I did think that this could use more, the slow build crescendo to the end was nicely done, though it left readers hanging. I liked Pierre, and I liked the idea behind the story as well. I was honestly more interested in the boy who wanted to bring back a girl (won’t say more due to spoilers), but the entire novel speaks of even more stories to be had in the next volume of the adventure.

I’m not going to say that this was one of my favorites, though it is one that I’m still thinking about days later. The ideas for the story are intriguing, and I would love to see how much more in depth the necromancy becomes. Will it be as unique as Dresden Files, for example, or will it not deal with magic but more of the romance? I have added the next book to my wish list, and hope to soon be able to purchase it when I am able.

As it stands, I’m giving this novella a 4/5 stars for creativity, a nice slow-build of a plot, and for the fascinating characters!

Until next time,

-Pass Me That Book.

Kindle Ebook Review: Heart of Mist

Heart of Mist

Title: Heart of Mist
Author: Helen Scheuerer
Genre: Fantasy
Series: Book 1 of ?
Publisher: Talem Press
Page Count: 500
Type of Book: Purchased, Kindle Ebook,
Review Word Count: 500
Rated: 4/5 stars
Notes: Why do I wait so long to read such wonderful books? Because I’m an idiot, that’s why!

Warning: one attempted rape scene, an alcoholic character, bullying, murder, slavery, and death feature throughout this story. If you have triggers, then please keep these scenes in mind, as some of them are quite intense.

This book has been getting nothing but excellent reviews, and I am pleased to be one of many adding yet another excellent review to the pile. I really enjoyed this book, though the one thing I didn’t care for was the shifting of characters throughout the chapters. If it had just stuck with two characters, that would have been fine, but it took Game of Thrones theme and introduced us to various different characters, all with their own unique stories and impact.

I loved the main character, Bleak, most of all. While Bleak isn’t her real name, and we discover who she truly is towards the end of the book, Bleak’s a cool character because of the unique ability she has of being a mind-reader…along with so much more power that she has no idea about and isn’t ready to handle. She’s pretty bad-ass, and while she’s also got her faults, that just makes her a much more realistic character. I found it refreshing to have so many unique voices in a fantasy setting, most of those being bad-ass women more than capable of defending themselves.

My other complaint, however, is the cliffhanger ending. While it leaves it hanging wide open for book two, we also discover the name ‘oremere’ is significant in this series. It, as well as the mist, makes me feel like there is a lot more to this story than what we’ve learned in book one.

Needless to say, I’m giving this 4/5 stars. The reason it’s not five stars is because of the shifting character viewpoints, and a couple of characters I just did not identify with at all. Even so, I’m definitely interested in getting book two which is being released (has been released?) quite soon!

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book.

Netgalley Review: Daisy’s Run

Daisy's Run

Title: Daisy’s Run
Author: Scott Baron
Series: Book 1
Genre: Adult, Science Fiction
Publisher: Curiouser Publishing
Page Count: 400
Type of Book: ARC, Kindle Ebook, Netgalley Read
Review Word Count: 400
Rated: 4/5 stars
Notes: This book will make you think. It’s a fast paced actiony romance set in the future. And the ending was a cliffhanger.

I’m still thinking about this book. I stayed up until about two in the morning to finish it (couldn’t sleep anyway, so why not read a book if you’re tossing and turning?), and was left wanting more due to it cutting off rather abruptly at the end. The book is set in the future, there’s some romance going on, and there’s lots of action, conspiracies, and general futuristic “how can this have happened” type of stuff going on.

Warnings/slightly spoilers sorry: romantic relationships with cyborgs, death of a main character, dismemberment of an arm via a door, swearing, graphic detailed descriptions of the end of the world, AI’s vs. Humans…uh-can’t really think of what else to add.

I liked the characters. While Daisy was the main character that I was rooting for, I also really liked Vince and Finn-Finn, because he seemed like the sort that I would really like due to his sarcastic nature and being an incredible chef. Vince was also an interesting figure, and not one that I normally go for, but towards the end of the book he moves mountains to get Daisy back safe and sound and doesn’t hold a grudge for some spoiler or another.

There were a couple of issues that I had with this book. I think another editor could look it over, because some of the conversations seemed a bit jarring, and confusing. I’ll have to go through it again and find my highlights for examples, but I think most readers will be able to push through it fine.

I’m giving this a 4/5 stars. The book wasn’t perfect, it was a bit of a slow build up into a ‘wow I did not see that coming’ kind of read, and some of the characters were a bit off-putting. I hope the second book gets to be even better than the first, and definitely look forward to reading it!

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book.

ARC Review: Beggone the Raggedy Witches

 

The Raggedy Witches

Title: Begone the Raggedy Witches
Author: Celine Kiernan
Series: Book 1
Genre: Middle Grade/Fantasy
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Page Count: 300
Type of Book: ARC, Kindle Ebook, Netgalley Read
Review Word Count: 500
Rated: 5/5 stars
Notes: Look at me go with all these reviews!

I’m finishing books at a rapid pace this month! I’m almost halfway through my list of arcs on Netgalley!

Begone the Raggedy Witches was requested primarily for the gorgeous cover. It’s artwork is pretty to look at, and it was also requested as an excellent Fall Read, and I really liked this one to fit the mood perfectly. Not only was there spooky artwork throughout the book, but there was also beautifully rendered dark atmospheric vibes.

Middle Grade books have been absolutely killing it lately, and this was no exception. This was a good read for a middle grade, and while it seemed a bit long, it was definitely worth it. The writing was phenomenal, and the characters were moving. I think my only real complaint is that this is a series, and I’ve already got enough of those as it is.

I think those who liked Coraline from Neil Gaiman or even the Graveyard Book would particularly love this witchy novel. It’s got the same dark vibes, and the beautiful prose, and it’s just overall an beautiful novel to read.

I’m probably not going to finish this series, as I have too many others to work on. This was a beautiful book to read, but not one that I absolutely need to know what happens next kind of book, if you know what I mean. So with that in mind, I’m still going to give this book a 5/5 stars because it really deserves it, and definitely needs all the hype it can get.

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book.

ARC Review: The Highlander Who Protected Me

The Highlander Who Protected Me

Title: The Highlander Who Protected Me
Author: Vanessa Kelly
Series: Book 1
Genre: Historical Romance
Publisher: Kensington Books
Page Count: 352
Type of Book: ARC, Kindle Ebook, Netgalley Read
Review Word Count: 400
Rated: 4/5 stars
Notes: This was a fun read for the start of the fall season!

I’m a fan of historical romance, but it’s been a while since I’ve dived into the subject. I’ve been stuck in the fantasy genre for so long that this was a very refreshing change of pace for me. It helped that the story was a fun and fast paced read, and that the characters were all utterly delightful. I particularly liked the heroine, though she seemed to make stupid choices from time to time that just showed how much more human she’d become. While I found Royal to be a bit of an egotistical ass at times, he too proved to be a strong, brave highlander who would stop at nothing to ‘protect his lady’.

Though I enjoyed the whole thing, the feminist side of me couldn’t help but be rather outraged at the whole situation that Ainsley had found herself in, not to mention the few comments that Royal had made towards Ainsley after finding out she was engaged when he first started flirting with her. There was one line in particular that made me want to slap him so hard he’d still be hurting by the next year. But then he makes up for it later, and despite myself I find that I still rather enjoyed reading about the characters.

Warnings: implied rape, pregnancy, males being stupid, women being equally stupid, and lots of drama, plus some steamy scenes between Ainsley and Royal

I do like the name Ainsley. While a bit hard to pronounce, it reads nice. Royal is a strange name, however, I’ve never met a character actually named ‘Royal’ but it suits him. There were other names within that were also unusual, and weird, but it didn’t impact the story at all, and seemed fitting for the time period and place as well.

I’m adding the author to my list of favorites when it comes to writing historical romance. While I didn’t automatically love this story, I still thoroughly enjoyed myself for several hours as I devoured this book in one sitting! 4/5 stars for a perfect fall read, and I eagerly anticipate reading another book from the author quite soon!

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book.

ARC Review: The Phantom Tree

 

The Phantom Tree

Title: The Phantom Tree
Author: Nicola Cornick
Series: Book One
Genre: Historical Fantasy
Publisher: Harlequin
Page Count: 265
Type of Book: ARC, Kindle Ebook, Netgalley Read
Review Word Count: 300
Rated: 3/5 stars
Notes: So many 5 star reviews on Goodreads let me down….

Being a fan of history, I found this interesting at first, but then it slowly started dragging. It seemed to take a while to build up to plot, and I could not find it in myself to care about the characters. While I found Alison’s story of waiting 500 years to find her son interesting, it wasn’t enough to keep my interest.

Not to mention the odd dis-jointed way that charac-ters kept talking. Yes, it did that throughout the arc copy of the book, which was weird and frustrating and just plain annoying. The story also alternated between two character POVS: Alison and Mary.

While I was excited at first to think that this was about Anne Boylen and Wolf Hall, that excitement wore off as the pace of the story, while beautifully written, was utterly boring. Nothing seemed to be happening much in the story overall.

I stuck around for about six chapters before giving up. I’m sorry, I know bad reviews hurt authors, and I’m sure this book might be absolutely perfect for someone else, but it just wasn’t for me. I felt nothing for this book, and am therefore giving it a 3 out of 5 stars. I didn’t hate it, I just had no emotional connection to it whatsoever.

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book.

ARC Review: Undertow

Undertow

Title: Undertow
Author: Brooklyn Ray
Series: Book 2
Genre: Fantasy, LGBT
Publisher: Ninestar Press LLC
Page Count:
Type of Book: ARC, Kindle Ebook, Netgalley Read
Review Word Count: 400
Rated: 4/5 stars
Notes: I got book two without reading book one. Whoops.

I really liked this one. At first, I was hesitant in reading it because it was book two, but once I started I could not stop. While there were several confusing moments, such as not knowing who certain characters were or why they mattered to the story, I essentially liked it. I especially loved the character Liam and Ryder, though I identified more easily with Liam.

Warnings: this contains LGBT gay characters, strong sex scenes, blood magic, some light swearing, and lots of drama

This book also contains selkies, witches, warlocks, and so much more! The story was fascinating, and I am definitely interested in getting book one to discover more from this really talented author. I could not begin to describe how much I liked this book once I really started into it.

I’m giving this a four out of five stars, mostly because I was an idiot and requested book two without realizing it, and you kinda do need to read book one to understand some of the things going on in the book. Otherwise, it was beautifully and emotional roll-coaster ride.

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book.

ARC Review: A Brazen Curiosity

A Brazen Curiosity

Title: A Brazen Curiosity
Author: Lynn Messina
Series: Book 1
Genre: Historical Mystery/Romance
Publisher: Potatoworks Press
Page Count: 175
Type of Book: ARC, Kindle Ebook, Netgalley Read
Review Word Count: 400
Rated: 4/5 stars
Notes: Apparently, I’m in the mood for historical books, instead of all the fantasy I’ve been reading!

This was a fun book, almost as delightful as The Highlander Who Protected Me! With smart characters, a charming heroine, and an equally amusing hero (duke), I really liked this one and will probably add it to my list of favorites on Goodreads. It’s not a completely original mystery-body in the library, who did it?-kind of theme going on, but it’s well written, enjoyable, and completely believable.

Another good read for the start of fall, I found myself really loving the main heroine, and how she was eager to solve the mystery of who killed Mr. Otley in the library. Coming upon the body and the Duke, she sets about to see if it was the Duke who killed Mr. Otley, or someone else. Of course, the Duke doesn’t want her to interfer because she’s just a woman and doesn’t need to go diving into such a grim business as murder, but doesn’t try to really stop her either which I found a refreshing change.

There were a few women in the book that I found rather annoying. The elderly women who fainted at the mere mention of a dead body, or having to be ‘soothed repeatedly for five minutes’ before getting to the confession of the killer. Come on, really? I mean, I know it’s the time period, but it just makes me feel rather annoyed at them all for being such insipid characters.

Overall, it was a fun mystery with a hint of romance towards the end of the book. I really liked the characters, the way it all turned out, and the satisfying feeling it gave me at the end. I’m rating this a 4/5 stars, because while it was a fun book overall, there were times when the characters were just annoying. I definitely look forward to the next book in the series, and may even attempt to get an arc of it. If not, I’ll see about picking it up some other way.

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book.

ARC Book Review: Worldshaper

Worldshaper

Title: Worldshaper
Author: Edward Willet
Series: Book 1
Genre: Science Fiction, Fantasy
Publisher: DAW
Page Count: 400
Type of Book: ARC, Paperback, Netgalley Ebook
Review Word Count: 700
Rated: 5/5 stars
Notes:

I need book two now. Please.

Warnings: some harsh language, death of a horse, and a terrorist like murder at the start of the book, plus a terrible cliffhanging that leaves you wanting more

There is so much to love about this book. Like the fact it references Tolkien at least three times, if not more. Or perhaps the fact it referenced Doctor Who. Or maybe the fact that it’s got a sarcastic wiseass smartmouthed main female character who actually stops to think ‘what-if’ every once and a while. Or perhaps there’s the fact that there are so many interesting ideas in this book that it’ll make your world spin. (Sorry. Poor pun, but this book is full of puns and cliches similiar, and I couldn’t not pass that up.)

I really loved this book. Karl wasn’t my favorite character, but he eventually grew on me. I found him somewhat questionable, actually. The main bad guy known as The Adversary is a fascinating character that I sometimes want to strangle. What is it with people wanting complete and utter control over everything? He clearly didn’t have a good childhood.

There’s a lot to like in this book, but Shawna’s character is the best. I liked Brent, the few times he showed up (Shawna’s boyfriend) and I liked Aesha (cool name!) and her mother and all the characters, and the references to various fandoms that I just love. The Emerald City was mentioned a couple of times, as was King Arthur and his Knights, not to mention a favorite poet of mine Robert Burns as well as Robert Frost…

Seriously. There’s loads of references, terrible puns, sarcastic characters with witty remarks, cliche upon cliche. Edward Willet is fast becoming my favorite author. I have another book that I need to read of his called The Cityborn…where was I? Ah, yes, the book!

Imagine if you can shape worlds purely from your imagination. You’re only allowed to have a limited bit of power to shape those worlds, you can’t change yourself, and if you run out of power for good then that’s it, caput, the end. Such an intriguing idea! I wish that I could do such a thing! The only way that I can come close to that, however, is by writing.

Shawna is a Shaper, one that Karl believes is the most powerful Shaper in existence aside from Ygrair, a woman who sent him on a quest to fetch a powerful Shaper. To do what, I’m not entirely certain, as Karl is very cagey about what’s going on there. He explains everything to Shawna, who is apparently supposed to know all about this stuff already. For some reason, however, she’s blocked it completely from her mind. Karl, frustrated, tugs her along and helps her to escape the Adversary who wants to kill her so that he can completely control the world that she’s created without any sort of interference at all.

There’s much adventure within this book, plenty of fun and excitement. There’s scary moments for the characters, lots of life or death situations, and there’s also one scene where a horse is killed by accident. So if you’re a horse lover as I am, fair thee warning.

I was kinda reminded of the Magicians by Lev Grossman in regards to this book. While on a completely different scale, this book still had that same flare in regards to how imagination is used. I wonder if the author’s read the series, because there is a character named Julia towards the back end of the book too…

I really really enjoyed this book, and thank DAW tremendously for sending me an ARC. I finished it in four and a half hours, and hope to have book two soon because it left off on a terrible cliffhanger. I’m giving this book a well deserved 5/5 stars, and crossing my fingers that book two comes out soon!

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book