Apr 30, 2014

"Ashes on the Waves" by Mary Lindsey

Title: Ashes on the Waves

Author: Mary Lindsey

My rating: 5 of 5

(Book read from April 26th to April 27th, 2014.) 


Liam MacGregor is cursed. Haunted by the wails of fantastical Bean Sidhes and labeled a demon by the villagers of Dòchas, Liam has accepted that things will never get better for him — until a wealthy heiress named Annabel Leighton arrives on the island and Liam’s fate is changed forever. 
With Anna, Liam finally finds the happiness he has always been denied; but, the violent, mythical Otherworlders, who inhabit the island and the sea around it, have other plans. They make awager on the couple’s love, testing its strength through a series of cruel obstacles. But the tragedies draw Liam and Anna even closer. Frustrated, the creatures put the couple through one last trial — and this time it’s not only their love that’s in danger of being destroyed. 
Based on Edgar Allan Poe’s chilling poem, "Annabel Lee," Mary Lindsey creates a frighteningly beautiful gothic novel that glorifies the power of true love.


My Thoughts on the Book:

Ashes on the Waves is a beautiful tale based on Edgar Allan Poe's poem Annabel Lee. When the author announced this book, I was excited by the prospect, because of the potential a book like this had, and Mary Lindsey definitely delivered. This book, as Annabel Lee's retelling, was pretty much perfect.

Ashes on the Waves, with it's eerie & mysterious setting, beautiful prose, and main characters that are determined to fight for each other & for their love, complete one haunting, mythical, heartbreaking & unforgettable romantic story.

I really don't want to go into details, but I really enjoyed this book. It was interesting, especially the supernatural aspect, it was suspenseful, with lots of twists & turns, and in the end quite heartbreaking. I have to admit that lots of things were predictable, but the journey was really haunting, so I didn't mind at all. But, near the end, the author managed to surprise me more than once, and pretty much tore my heart to shreds over & over again.

If you enjoy intriguing & mysterious, supernatural romantic stories, I highly recommend this book, because Ashes on the Waves just might be the book for you!



"One Night with an Earl" by Jennifer Haymore

Title: One Night with an Earl

Author: Jennifer Haymore

Series: House of Trent, #2.5

Publisher: Forever (Grand Central Publishing)

Imprint: Forever Yours

Publication date: April 1st, 2014

My rating: 4 of 5

(Novella read on April 16th, 2014,  from a review copy received from the publisher via NetGalley, in exchange of an honest review.)  


Beatrice Reece, Lady Fenwick, has retired from polite society. Everyone knows her late husband treated her abominably, and she simply cannot bear the whispers of the ton. But it's the night of London's premier masquerade ball — and Beatrice's one chance to revel in anonymity. She hopes no one will recognize her beneath her mask, not even the sinfully sexy stranger across the room who holds her captive in his gaze.

Andrew Sinclair would know beautiful Beatrice anywhere from the gentle sway of her hips, the richness of her hair and the lushness of her body. When he asks her to dance, the attraction is instant and all-consuming. The only woman he's ever truly wanted is finally in his arms. But when the clock strikes twelve, will this one reckless night fade into the morning light?

My Thoughts on the Novella:

One Night with an Earl is the 3rd story by Lady Esme - a character in the House of Trent series. Just like with her previous one His for Christmas, once again she delivered a lovely & romantic story about second chances.

In One Night with an Earl, we meet Beatrice - a young widow that had been abused by her late husband. She doesn't socialize in the ton anymore, but decided to make an exception for a masquerade ball, because she thinks that no one will recognize her.

But, at the ball (against his will), comes Drew. He was in love with Beatrice when she first came out (and apparently she had a crush on him, too), and they were becoming friends, but before he got the courage to propose, she got engaged to another (her father got her engaged to another, she had no say in the matter). So, the moment he saw her at the ball, he recognized her right away & decided that now is his second chance. He doesn't let her know who he is (in case she remembers him), or that he knows who she is, but the connection & chemistry between them is instantaneous, and their flirtation & banter is quite delightful.

I also loved how the author in such a short read & short time managed for the characters to get to know each other, and to develop them as characters quite well. Beatrice has been through so much, and her parents are awful, but she's strong & decides to fight for what she wants. As for Drew, he's not your usual hero for that time period, but he's really interesting character, and I would probably swoon over him in Beatrice's shoes, too. He's actually quite amazing.

Their chemistry was sizzling, the story was romantic, and the ending was great, too. I still haven't read any of the full-length House of Trent books, but I'm really looking forward to them now. If you're a fan of historical romances, I recommend One Night with an Earl.



Apr 28, 2014

"Attachments" by Rainbow Rowell

Title: Attachments

Author: Rainbow Rowell

Publisher: Penguin Group Plume

Imprint: Plume

Publication date: March 27th, 2012

My rating: 5 of 5

(Book read on April 17th, 2014,  from a review copy received from the publisher via NetGalley, in exchange of an honest review.) 


"Hi, I'm the guy who reads your e-mail, and also, I love you . . . " 

From the award-winning author of Eleanor & Park and Fangirl comes a hilarious and heartfelt novel about love in the workplace.

Beth Fremont and Jennifer Scribner-Snyder know that somebody is monitoring their work e-mail. (Everybody in the newsroom knows. It's company policy.) But they can't quite bring themselves to take it seriously. They go on sending each other endless and endlessly hilarious e-mails, discussing every aspect of their personal lives.

Meanwhile, Lincoln O'Neill can't believe this is his job now- reading other people's e-mail. When he applied to be "internet security officer," he pictured himself building firewalls and crushing hackers- not writing up a report every time a sports reporter forwards a dirty joke.

When Lincoln comes across Beth's and Jennifer's messages, he knows he should turn them in. But he can't help being entertained-and captivated-by their stories. 
By the time Lincoln realizes he's falling for Beth, it's way too late to introduce himself.
What would he say . . . ?

My Thoughts on the Book:

I loved Rainbow Rowell's Eleanor & Park, so I've been really looking forward to trying her other books. Attachments is another book I've fallen in love with. I fell in love with the way it was written, with its delightful & realistic & lovable characters, to their sweet & fun story, just everything about it. Attachments is definitely a unique contemporary romance book that I won't forget.

Beth & Jennifer's conversations were hilarious, and I loved reading them. They're amazing friends, and such fun characters, so I could understand how Lincoln got hooked on their emails.

And I loved Lincoln as a character. He's definitely not your usual hero, but that's why I loved him. He was sweet & smart, and so, so nice, and most of all, I could understand him & connect with him. I loved that Attachments was written from his PoV.

As for the romance & the way the story played out, I think it was quite sweet & romantic, and so funny, just a delight to be read. Also, I loved that in the end, it was revealed that Beth & Linc were just perfect for each other (all the things she did when it comes to Linc, that we had no idea about).

If you'd love to read a different type of romance, full of heart, laughs & uniqueness, then Attachments is the book for you & I can't recommend it enough!



Spring into Horror Read-a-Thon: Start + Reading List!

The Spring into Horror Read-a-Thon is hosted by Michelle a.k.a The True Book Addict at her read-a-thon dedicated blog Seasons of Reading!
The read-a-thon started on Monday, April 28th at midnight CST and ends on Sunday, May 4thth at 11:59 pm CST.
For more info & to join the read-a-thon, visit the post HERE.
On Twitter we (read-a-thoners) will use the hashtag #SpringHorrorRAT.

My Reading List:

As always, I might read something else, or continue some of the already started books, depending on my mood, but, I'm really hoping I'll read some of these, especially because 5 of them are for review, as for Passenger, I actually read half of The Marbury Lens for the FrightFall Read-a-Thon, and it was quite dark & gritty & disturbing & horrific - the perfect read for this read-a-thon, so I was keeping the sequel especially for this week, so I'm really looking forward to it. I'll probably start with it.

I'll probably do an update some time later this week, and of course I'm planning to tweet now & then, and hopefully make it to one of the Twitter chats.
 Happy reading everyone!!!

Apr 26, 2014

Dewey's 24-Hour Read-a-Thon: Start + Goals + Reading List + Mini Challenges + Updates + Wrap Up!

It's that time again, time for Dewey's 24-Hour Read-a-Thon.
As always, the read-a-thon for me starts at 2 pm on Saturday, and ends at 2 pm on Sunday.
And this will be my 9th time participating (I know, I can't believe it, too). 
This time, I decided to do things differently. I'll count the time I've spent reading, and the number of pages I've read, and I decided to read only full-length novels, and only physical books from my TBR shelf, so no eARCs & Kindle ebooks or shorter reads & graphic novels or novellas this time. There are some other things I'm hoping to do, like visiting the other blogs participating (even though I didn't sign up to be a cheerleader), tweeting a lot, participating in mini challenges, and hopefully update often & read a lot, of course ;)

My Reading List:

~ Ashes on the Waves by Mary Lindsey (3 + 373 p)
~ Alien in the Family by Gini Koch (457 p)
~ This Strange & Familiar Place by Rachel Carter (264 p)

~ Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore (547 p)
~ Still Sucks to Be Me by Kimberly Pauley (374 p)
~ The Vicious Deep by Zoraida Cordova (370 p)

My Goals:

~ to read 12 hours
~ to read 750 pages
~ to read 1 full-length book (to start & finish it)
~ to visit 50 read-a-thon participants
~ to do the 3 read-a-thon memes (the start, half-way through & end of event memes)
~ to participate in 3 challenges

Mini Challenges & Memes:

 ~ Kick Off Meme:
1. Today (as always) I'm reading from Skopje, Macedonia (that's in Europe).
2. I'm really looking forward to Alien in the Family by Gini Koch, as well as Ashes on the Waves by Mary Lindsey.
3. I made cheesecake, so I'm really looking forward to trying it.
4. I'm a read-a-thon addict (I haven't missed a Dewey Read-a-Thon in years since it's my fav), & I adore Neil Gaiman's books.
5. The last time it was actually my birthday, so I didn't read a lot, so this time I'm planning to read a lot, visit lots of participants, I have a lot more snacks ready, and I'm tracking both the time & the pages, and I'm reading only full-length books from my TBR shelf, and only physical ones, no ebooks or shorter reads, so that's definitely different.

~ The Best of Your Reading Year

Best Book of My Reading Year: Stiltskin by Andrew Buckley

Best Romance Book of My Reading Year: Attachments by Rainbow Rowell

Best MG Book of My Reading Year: Tesla's Attic by neal Shusterman & Eric Elfman

~ Mid Event Meme

1. I'm still reading Ashes on the Waves by Mary Lindsey.
2. I haven't finished anything so far.
3. Alien in the Family by Gini Koch - I'm actually thinking about starting it now, and return to my first read later.
4. Not really, except telling everyone I'm busy. I made sure I'm free (mostly).
5. Yeah, I had quite the interruption. Like over 3 hours long. It was unplanned, but, in the end, I didn't really mind, because my cousin & her husband are leaving the country in a couple of days. After all, they're family.
6. No cheerleaders so far :( Hopefully, someone will cheer me on later ;)
7. No.
8. Nothing, I might choose shorter reads next time (like all the times before) instead of full-length novels.
9. Actually, I am getting tired, or maybe I should say sleepy, but it's almost 2 am here, so...
10. No tips, just to have fun, read as much as you like & have lots of different choices to read. Also, join the read-a-thon chat on Twitter, it's fun & motivating.

~ Your Name in Titles 
A - Attachments by Rainbow Rowell
L - Lola & the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins
E - Eona by Alison Goodman
K - Kinslayer by Jay Kristoff
S - Scarlet by Marissa Meyer
A - Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake
N - Naturally, Charlie by S. L. Scott
D - Discount Armageddon by Seanan McGuire
R - Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
A - Another Little Piece of My Heart by Tracy Martin

~ End of Event Meme

1. Around hours 14/15, I didn't feel like reading, so despite the fact that I wasn't sleepy, I went to bed.
2. Neil Gaiman's shorter books are great picks. I think that Rainbow Rowell's & Victoria Schwab's books are others that would be great for a read-a-thon.
3. No.
4. I loved connecting on Twitter, and I really loved all the challenges, too :)
5. One book.
6. Ashes on the Waves by Mary Lindsey.
7. Ashes on the Waves by Mary Lindsey.
8. None.
9. No.
10. I'm 99% sure I'll participate next time as a reader.


Update #1:

Time read so far: 1 h 58 min

Pages read so far: 115

Books read from so far: Ashes on the Waves by Mary Lindsey

Number of read-a-thoners I've visited so far: 0

Memes/Challenges I've participated in so far: 3 - Intro Meme + Puzzle Cover Challenge + Pick a Paragraph

Update #2:

Time read since my last update: 1 h 45 min

Total time read: 3 h 43 min

Pages read since my last update: 104

Total pages read: 219

Books read from since my last update: Ashes on the Waves

Total number of books read: 0

Number of read-a-thoners I've visited since my last update: 0

Total number of read-a-thoners I've visited: 0

Memes/Challenges I've participated in since my last update: 3 - The Best of Your Reading Year + Shelfie + First Editions
Total number of memes/challenges I've participated in: 6

Update #3:

Time read since my last update: 1 h

Total time read: 4 h 43 min

Pages read since my last update: 42

Total pages read: 261

Books read from since my last update: Alien in the Family

Total number of books read: 0

Number of read-a-thoners I've visited since my last update: 13

Total number of read-a-thoners I've visited: 13

Memes/Challenges I've participated in since my last update: 3 - Mid Event Meme + Your Name in Titles + That Reminds Me of a Book
Total number of memes/challenges I've participated in: 9

Final Update:

Time read since my last update: 3 h 12 min

Total time read: 7 h 55 min

Pages read since my last update: 193

Total pages read: 454

Books read from since my last update: Ashes on the Waves + Alien in the Family

Total number of books read: 1 - Ashes on the Waves

Number of read-a-thoners I've visited since my last update: 13

Total number of read-a-thoners I've visited: 13

Memes/Challenges I've participated in since my last update: 1 - End of Event Meme
Total number of memes/challenges I've participated in:10

Wrap Up:

I didn't do as well as I hoped, I just didn't feel like reading, but I did 10 mini challenges, which is a record for me ;) And at least I read one full-length book. So, not as great as I hoped for, but still good. I spent almost 8 hours reading, read 450+ pages, and I also started Alien in the Family.

"The Darkest Craving" by Gena Showalter

Title: The Darkest Craving

Author: Gena Showalter

Series: Lords of the Underworld, #10

My rating: 2.5 of 5

(Book read from April 14th to April 24th, 2014.)


New York Times bestselling author Gena Showalter is back with a breathtaking Lords of the Underworld tale about a warrior trapped by darkness and the woman determined to save him...
Having endured weeks of torture in the bowels of hell, Kane wants nothing to do with his beautiful rescuer, Josephina Aisling. The half-Fae female threatens to awaken the demon of Disaster inside him—a beast he’s determined to kill, no matter the price.
Josephina is hunted by a brutal enemy — her royal family — and Kane is her only source of protection. He’s also the only male to ever set her aflame, and even he succumbs to the heat. But as they navigate the treacherous world of the Fae, they are forced to make a choice: live apart…or die together.

My Thoughts on the Book:

The Darkest Craving is the 10th installment of the Lords of the Underworld series. This time, the Lord in question is Kane - the keeper of Disaster. There will definitely be some spoilers below. 

The Darkest Craving was overall an ok read, but nothing special. I can't quite point out what it was, but something was definitely missing. I actually preferred the few & between PoVs of some of the others Lords, like Torin, Cameo, Viola, and of course, I loved that we saw quite a lot of William (YAY), as well as his "kids". I'm actually finally interested in reading a story about Cameo, and I loved the set up for Torin's book, which will be next. Actually, after reading the description about it, I'm dying to read it! I think it will be awesome!

As for Kane's story, I just couldn't quite warm up to the characters, both Kane & Josephina. Kane used to be one of the funny ones, but after everything he endured in hell, I can understand how he changed. Ok, he's bad-ass & sexy, but he's also really possessive & bent on revenge, and even though that worked for Josephina perfectly, it didn't for me. And to be honest, I didn't feel the love between them both. Sure, there was attraction & chemistry, but it didn't quite work for me, even though they seemed to be meant for each other, it comes down to the fact that I didn't really care anymore. Also, soon Kane became boring with his nicknames for Josephina.

As for Josephina, she's half-human, half-fae. And her father is actually the fae king. And she's a blood slave for her half-sister, meaning everything her sister does wrong, Josephina is punished and suffers the consequences. And since her sister is the keeper of Irresponsibility, you can only imagine what that entails. Anyway, Josephina is actually quite strong, and to endure everything she has, you have to be, though when she meets Kane, she's ready to give up, she just wants to die. But, of course, Kane doesn't let her. Josephina also has some cool abilities, though probably not cool for her. She can borrow an ability & strength from for a short time, but she can actually borrow the demons as well (this is the not cool part). Actually, she can borrow any supernatural ability (probably from everyone). So, you probably shouldn't mess with her, because you won't know what you're in for.

But, despite all of that, this novel still had its entertaining & funny moments (William was the most responsible), and as I said, I loved the set up for the next books. There was lots of action & killing of course, and once again Gena Showalter decided to expand the world, which it was interesting at first, though in the end, not interesting enough. Also, it was definitely on the predictable side, only a couple of things that happened in the end surprised me (Leopold's secret & who the woman on the picture was), but the ending itself was predictable. 

Still, I'm looking forward to continuing the series. We're nearing the end, and finally Torin's story in The Darkest Touch will be next. Also, I loved seeing Malcolm from the Angels of the Dark series, as well as the rest of the Lords of the Underworld cast. And seriously, Gena, you must write William's novel soon, I don't think I can wait anymore, though I know I'll have to. But now (after reading Beauty Awakened), I'm actually wondering if William's story will be part of the Lords of the Underworld series or the Angels of the Dark series? Anyway, I can't wait either way.



Apr 25, 2014

"Flirting with Forever" by Molly Cannon

Title: Flirting with Forever

Author: Molly Cannon

Series: Everson, Texas, #3

 Publisher: Forever (Grand Central Publishing)

Imprint: Forever

Publication date: April 29th, 2014

My rating: 5 of 5

(Book read on April 22nd-23rd, 2014,  from an eARC, received from the publisher via NetGalley, in exchange of an honest review.)  


Something old and something new . . .

Flying is Theo Jacobson's passion. Soaring above the clouds, he's on to the next adventure . . . and the next woman. So when he comes home to Everson, Texas, for his big brother's wedding, it's nothing but a pit stop. He'll act as best man, cover the family business while the happy couple honeymoons, and be on his way before the champagne goes flat. But all that changes when he comes face-to-face with the wedding planner-the very same woman who broke his heart without a backward glance years ago.

Irene Cornwell started I Do I Do with a wing and a prayer. Now, with two weddings under her belt, it's a piece of cake . . . until Theo lands back in town. Just seeing his twinkling blue eyes and infuriatingly sexy smile turns her world upside down. For the sake of her business, she proposes an uneasy truce. But when the wedding is over-all bets are off!

My Thoughts on the Book:

Flirting with Forever is another fun & delightful read by Molly Cannon! The story will make you laugh, and will make you smile, and will charm you, and the amazing cast of characters will make you wish that all of them are your friends!

For me, fun contemporary romances are all about that! If they manage to leave me with a smile on my face &/or feeling all gooey inside when they're over, then I want more, and Molly Cannon definitely achieved that with her latest installment!

What I loved the most about this book are the main characters & their story. Theo & Irene had become best friends after high school, and after that they've fallen in love, gotten engaged, but broken up. Now, years later, their paths have crossed again, but can they resist the pull?

I loved how their past together was told by them both. Parts of the story were told by Irene, the other parts by Theo, and they all completed a sweet & romantic story about two people madly in love, who separated because of a miscommunication. But, of course, the main story was about the present, about getting over the heartache they've caused to each other unintentionally, and giving themselves another chance.

I loved both Theo & Irene as characters, and I loved them together as a couple. The chemistry between them was sizzling, and they were really sweet & charming, and they were friends also. Just, perfect for each other.

Of course, I loved seeing again the old favorites: Marla Jean, Jake, Linc, Donny Joe, etc, as well as meeting a new favorite one - Charlie. I really hope he'll get his own story. The series has definitely joined my list of the few contemporary romance series that I adore, and I can't wait for more!

If you enjoy entertaining contemporary romances, I highly recommend the Everson, Texas series, and Molly Cannon's books!