Tell the Wind and Fire by Sarah Rees Brennan (Teen Paranormal Romance) *ARC*

Expected publication: April 5th 2016

16221851Tell the Wind & Fire is about a young girl called Lucie who lives in a New York very different from the New York we know: the city is torn between two very different kinds of magic, and Lucie’s own family was torn apart years ago by that conflict. Lucie wears magic rings and carries a burden of guilt she can’t share with anyone. The light in her life is her sweetheart boyfriend Ethan, but it turns out Ethan has a secret too: a soulless doppelganger created by dark magic, who has to conceal the face identical to Ethan’s with a hood fastened by a collar nobody but a Light magician with magical rings can take off… and who introduces himself to both of them by, for reasons nobody can understand, saving Ethan’s life.

Stars: 2/5

You know how they say “never judge a book by it’s cover” this is one of those cases. The book cover is beautiful, but this book was actually pretty bad. It started off promising enough, but somewhere around Chapter 3 it just got bad and then end was even worse. Lucie is supposed to be this heroine of both the light and dark cities, but mostly she’s just a coward. She rarely stands up for herself or those around her, blames everyone else for things that are wrong, and hides her ideas and feelings even when she knows something is wrong. Only a handful of times in the story does she make a stand, but even then it feels forced for the character. Ethan is blah and Carwyn (the doppelganger)is the only interesting character until he randomly decides he’s in love with Lucie, which feels completely out of character. There’s so much wrong with this story I don’t even know where to start. It’s only getting 2 stars because I actually finished it, if it had been any worse I would have put it down, not finishing it.

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You Were Here by Cori McCarthy (Teen Fiction) *ARC*

Expected publication: March 1st 2016

25679559Grief turned Jaycee into a daredevil, but can she dare to deal with her past? On the anniversary of her daredevil brother’s death, Jaycee attempts to break into Jake’s favorite hideout—the petrifying ruins of an insane asylum. Joined by four classmates, each with their own brand of dysfunction, Jaycee discovers a map detailing her brother’s exploration and the unfinished dares he left behind. As a tribute to Jake, Jaycee vows to complete the dares, no matter how terrifying or dangerous. What she doesn’t bargain on is her eccentric band of friends who challenge her to do the unthinkable: reveal the parts of herself that she buried with her brother.

Stars: 3/5

This book was okay, it wasn’t great, but not a waste of time either. I wanted to read this book because I felt like I would connect with Jaycee since I lost my brother in 2014. Our grief may not be the same, but the loss of a sibling is something that binds you and I was looking for that connection. I liked Jaycee, I understood Jaycee, no one is in the book truly understands her, but I do. I could go into all the reasons I understand Jaycee, but if you’ve never dealt with it you wouldn’t understand, which is one of the points of the book.  It was the rest of the characters in the book I had a problem with. They felt really in a very fake way. They were stereotypical and uninteresting. I was disappointed in the exploration of the dares, they were just kind blah. Things got all drama filled before they could ever really find what they were looking for at these places. I’d give the book 2.5 stars for story, but it gets 3 because of Jaycee.

Marked in Flesh (The Others #4) by Anne Bishop (Fantasy) *ARC*

Expected publication: March 8th 2016

22062202For centuries, the Others and humans have lived side by side in uneasy peace. But when humankind oversteps its bounds, the Others will have to decide how much humanity they’re willing to tolerate—both within themselves and within their community… Since the Others allied themselves with the cassandra sangue, the fragile yet powerful human blood prophets who were being exploited by their own kind, the delicate dynamic between humans and Others changed. Some, like Simon Wolfgard, wolf shifter and leader of the Lakeside Courtyard, and blood prophet Meg Corbyn, see the new, closer companionship as beneficial—both personally and practically. But not everyone is convinced. A group of radical humans is seeking to usurp land through a series of violent attacks on the Others. What they don’t realize is that there are older and more dangerous forces than shifters and vampires protecting the land that belongs to the Others—and those forces are willing to do whatever is necessary to protect what is theirs.

Stars: 4.5/5

Besides the first book in the series this is my next favorite. Everything that’s been building finally comes to a head in this book and it did not disappoint, but Anne Bishop never does. She is one of my absolute favorite authors and I would recommend her books to anyone. I always love when I get one of her advanced readers copies because I am always greedy to get my hands on her books. This series was a lot different than her others. Her other books are much more high fantasy, where as The Others series has a foothold in reality. Since everything major got concluded in this book I’m not sure there will be another book, but I am really hoping there will. I would like to see what happens with Simon and Meg and how the other cassandra sangue end up. If you’re looking for a good series you can never do wrong with picking up a book by Anne Bishop.

Into the Dim (Into the Dim #1) by Janet B. Taylor (Teen Fantasy/Adventure) *ARC*

I received this book as an Advanced Readers Copy.

Expected publication: March 1st 2016

25897792When fragile, sixteen-year-old Hope Walton loses her mom to an earthquake overseas, her secluded world crumbles. Agreeing to spend the summer in Scotland, Hope discovers that her mother was more than a brilliant academic, but also a member of a secret society of time travelers. Trapped in the twelfth century in the age of Eleanor of Aquitaine, Hope has seventy-two hours to rescue her mother and get back to their own time. Along the way, her path collides with that of a mysterious boy who could be vital to her mission . . . or the key to Hope’s undoing.

Stars: 3.5/5

I really liked this book. They compare it Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series, but for teens and having read, well the first 2 books in the Outlander series, I agree. I love how they combine real events and history in with the fiction. The book is predictable in a way only teen books can be and the adults are more like teens than adults, which I am finding more and more common among teen books. Hope is a perfect heroine for a teen book though, I always enjoy when the females are strong in books and this book definitely has strong females, I mean it’s got Eleanor of Aquitaine in it. The boys are a bit obnoxious, but I’m finding that more and more typical in teen books as well. All in all the writing was good and the story enjoyable, I look forward to the next book in the series.

After She’s Gone by Lisa Jackson *Mystery*

25430775In this explosive new thriller, #1 New York Times bestselling author Lisa Jackson delves into the deep bond between two sisters and their shared dream that becomes a harrowing nightmare of madness, hatred and jealousy… Cassie Kramer and her younger sister, Allie, learned the hazards of fame long ago. Together, they’d survived the horror of a crazed fan who nearly killed their mother, former Hollywood actress Jenna Hughes. Still, Cassie moved to L.A., urging Allie to follow. As a team, they’d take the town by storm. But Allie, finally free of small-town Oregon, and just that little bit more beautiful, also proved to be more talented—and driven. Where Cassie got bit parts, Allie rose to stardom. But now her body double has been shot on the set of her latest movie—and Allie is missing. Police discover that the last call to Allie’s phone came from Cassie, though she has no recollection of making it. Instead of looking like a concerned relative, Cassie is starting to look like a suspect—the jealous sister who finally grew sick of playing a supporting role. As the tabloids go into a frenzy, Cassie ends up on a Portland psych ward. Is she just imagining the sinister figure who comes to her bedside, whispering about Allie—a visitor of whom there is no record? Is someone trying to help—or drive her mad?
Convinced she’s the only one who can find Allie, Cassie checks herself out of the hospital. But a sudden slew of macabre murders— each victim masked with a likeness of a member of Cassie’s family—makes Cassie fear for her safety and her sanity. The only way to end the nightmare is to find out what really happened to Allie. And with each discovery, Cassie realizes that no one can be trusted to keep her safe—least of all herself.

Stars: 3/5

I really didn’t like Cassie at the beginning of the book and was really considering not finishing this book. The middle of the book gets better and you do find yourself trying to figure out who the killer is and what really happened. The characters are obnoxious and lack depth and there a quite a few plot holes and story lines that don’t really go anywhere, but it’s not a horrible book. The ending was a bit unrealistic because of the characters and their decisions. I loved Lisa Jackson’s New Orleans series, but so far I’m not a huge fan of her stand-alone novels. I finished this one, but I put down two previously before picking this one up.

Friction by Sandra Brown (Mystery)

frictionA Texas Ranger, relegated to deskwork due to past recklessness, petitions to regain custody of his five-year-old daughter, and his case is assigned to a family court judge who is as attractive as she is ambitious. When a masked gunman barges in during the custody hearing with his sights on the judge, the Ranger reacts instinctually and goes after him. But authorities apprehend the wrong man, and the real gunman remains unknown, at large, and a threat. Will this take-charge lawman jeopardize his chances of custody by going after the would-be assassin? And will this unlikely pair be able to deny the forbidden attraction building between them?

Stars: 2/5

Normally I enjoy Sandra Brown’s books, but I didn’t like this one. The 2 main characters are completely unrelatable, and the cop heading up the investigation is an idiot, even when everyone around him is telling him he’s an idiot he refuses to let go due to his pride. The judge, Holly, is too perfect and it’s irritating. The texas ranger, (honestly I’ve blanked on his name and I just finished reading the book about an hour ago, I know it starts with a C so we’ll go with that), is just blah. He’s either focused on getting his daughter back or getting in Holly’s pants and with whatever is left over he focuses on the case. The “romance” between C and Holly feels forced and is more obnoxious in the story instead of adding too it. I really have nothing nice to say about this book so I’ll just stop now.

In the Woods (Dublin Murder Squad #1) by Tana French (Mystery)

In the woodsAs dusk approaches a small Dublin suburb in the summer of 1984, mothers begin to call their children home. But on this warm evening, three children do not return from the dark and silent woods. When the police arrive, they find only one of the children. He is gripping a tree trunk in terror, wearing blood-filled sneakers and unable to recall a single detail of the previous hours. Twenty years later, the found boy, Rob Ryan, is a detective on the Dublin Murder Squad and keeps his past a secret. But when a 12-year-old girl is found murdered in the same woods, he and Detective Cassie Maddox (his partner and closest friend) find themselves investigating a case chillingly similar to the previous unsolved mystery. Now, with only snippets of long-buried memories to guide him, Ryan has the chance to uncover both the mystery of the case before him and that of his own shadowy past.

Stars: 3.5/5

What is it with authors today making protagonists that you hate? Adam Ryan, aka Rob Ryan. Is an asshole (excuse the language, but it’s true). He uses people. In the beginning of the book him and his partner, Cassie Maddox, are best friends. They have the kind of friendship most people long for, then something happens and he treats her like she’s nothing. He has no right to be mad and her and even admits he has no right, but he treats her like crap anyways. Not only does he ignore her, lie to her, and belittle her, he also stops trusting her even though she has given him no reason too. If anyone should upset it should be Cassie with Rob. Rob screws up at every possible moment and you KNOW he knows better, but he’s so self-absorbed that he can’t see past it. It’s almost hard to focus on the mystery because your wondering if all of this is for real. Even at the end where he finally gets past himself and you think things, while might not end happily, will have a proper ending they don’t. You don’t learn what happens to Rob aka Adam in the woods when he was 12, and Katy only slightly gets justice since Rob screwed that up as well. But even though Rob’s an asshole and there’s only some justice you can’t help but like this book because of all of this. The author draws you in and you feel like you are there every step of the way with Rob and Cassie. I do wish this book had had dual points of view, it would have been nice to see things not only from Rob’s perspective but Cassie’s as well. The next book is about Cassie and something from her past so I’m hoping it’s done from her p.o.v. and we also get some insight into how she felt about what happened in this story (yes I will be reading the next book). I’m also still hoping at some point in this series (I think the author is up to book 5) that we learn what really happened to Adam and his 2 friends in the woods.