book review

Book Review: The Reluctant Vampire Queen by Jo Simmons

the reluctant vampireBook: The Reluctant Vampire Queen
Author: Jo Simmons
Genre: YA paranormal

Meet Mo Merrydrew – independent young woman, Mini Battenberg fan, president of the debating society – and reluctant vampire queen …

Fifteen-year-old Mo Merrydrew isn’t exactly expecting to be asked to be Vampire Queen of Great Britain when she’s cycling home from school one wet Tuesday evening. Apparently, she is ‘the Chosen One’. Aside from being uncomfortable with the idea of unelected power (not very democratic), there’s the blood drinking to consider (Mo is a vegetarian), and frankly it’s just not really the sort of role Mo’s looking for (she wants to aim for a real job in politics). But – if you’re Vampire Queen, you probably don’t have to do PE any more, and when the dreamy Luca, a vampire familiar, turns up, it all suddenly starts to look a bit more appealing …

My Rating: 4 STARS

(I was sent an arc of this book by the publisher for review)

My Review:

The Reluctant Vampire Queen is the perfect title for this book as it describes it so well. This book is about Mo Merrydrew who is living her ordinary life when suddenly a vampire shows up to tell her she has been chosen to be the new vampire queen.

This book was such a fun read, I loved it. It had such a good balance of humour and intrigue. The writing and humour in The Reluctant Vampire Queen had me laughing and smiling throughout reading it, I loved how witty the characters were.

I liked Mo and how she always has a plan and loves making them, I really liked reading about how she tries to handle the vampire side of things. Bogdan was another favourite character of mine within this book, his interactions with Mo were always so comical and my favourite scenes to read.

Mo and Lou’s friendship was another thing I liked about this book. Their friendship is something that also gets affected when Bogdan the vampire shows up as Mo decides to keep some things a secret from her friend.

I thought the plot was very fun and intriguing and loved reading about Mo juggling between trying to live her normal schoolgirl life and her trying to decide whether or not to become the queen of the vampire and rule over them.

Overall I really enjoyed The Reluctant Vampire Queen, it is such a fun and refreshing story that makes you smile. I loved the humour and wit of the characters and loved reading about Mo and her dealing with finding out about vampires.

book review

Book Review: Compelled (Shadow Beast Shifters #5) by Jaymin Eve

compelledBook: Compelled
Series: Shadow Beast Shifters #5
Author: Jaymin Eve
Age & Genre: Adult paranormal romance, fantasy

Simone, of the Torma shifters, thought she was finished with the world of supernaturals that existed outside of Earth. She’d been there, done that, and had the near death experience to show for her time.

Then a summons back to Valdor-the vampire world- is dropped in her lap.
Turns out that the last time she was there, her teeny tiny mistake sent out an energy burst that called to an ancient powerful master. A master who is looking for a mate and wants Simone to participate in the Selection to prove her worth. Attendance non-negotiable.

Great.

Lucky for her, she still has one ally up her sleeve: Lucien.

Okay, yeah, he’s a snarly, powerful, frustratingly perfect master himself, but at least she knows where she stands. Lucien agrees to enter himself as a master-looking-for-a-mate in the Selection so they can pretend to fall for each other.

Only, it’s never been that simple with Simone and Lucien, and all too soon the lines between pretend and real get very blurry. Especially when there’s feeding involved.

Simone now has more at stake than just her life… her heart is on the line.

My Rating: 3.5 STARS

My Review:

In Compelled we get to read more about the vampires and their world and how that world is run which really intrigued me. I enjoyed getting to know more about Lucien and his role in Valdor and seeing how Simone was drawn into that world. The conflict of Simone’s past in Valdor was interesting and I was intrigued by how that related to the present and the reasons she was called back.

I liked Lucien and Simone together, I thought their chemistry was believable and they made a good couple. I liked how they worked together during the selection. I also liked seeing how the characters all had each other’s backs and I liked how Len interacted with Simone.

I would’ve liked this book more if not for the focus on Mera and Shadow. I knew they would be in it a lot like they were in Deserted but it felt like they took centre stage again in this book instead of Simone and Lucien. I also didn’t get why Mera and Angel synched up.

Overall I enjoyed this book, I really liked finding out more about the vampires and their politics. Like with Deserted I would’ve liked to have less focus on Mera and Shadow and their baby but I still am excited to read more in this series.

book review

Book Review: Deserted (Shadow Beast Shifters #4) by Jaymin Eve

desertedBook: Deserted
Series: Shadow Beast Shifters #4
Author: Jaymin Eve
Age & Genre: Adult paranormal romance, fantasy

Melalekin “Angel” of the Honor Meadows has been a warrior her entire life. Battle. Death. Loss. They were her constant companions until the day she met Mera Callahan. A shifter who ended up being so much more. A shifter who changed her life, and now… she has been reborn. The scars of her past are gone. Her losses muted under the new life she plans on living.

There’s just one being standing in her way. A grudge holding desert deity who has made an art form out of making her life hell.

Reece of the Desert Lands is a god unused to being defied, and he has a very long memory when it comes to those who wronged him. Angel is the one he blames for the worst loss in his life, and he’ll never let her forget it. Their history is tragic and bloodied, and the pair are set to clash one more time, especially when they end up trapped in the very spot where they lost it all. A meeting of the dynasties in the Delfora, the ancient desert lands, will force them to the place it all began.

Here they will learn that sometimes the past defines your future. And that there is a fine line between love and hate.

My Rating: 3 STARS

My Review:

I liked reading about Angel and Reece and the hints at their relationship in previous books had me wondering what was up with them. I enjoyed reading about their past together in Deserted and how they got to being enemies with each other.

Angel and her journey from being emotionless to being reawakened really intrigued me and I loved how she started to enjoy her life more and experience things she hadn’t allowed herself to experience. I do think Reece’s possessiveness was a bit much and I felt it took some things away from Angel and her enjoyment.

What I didn’t like about this book was the focus on Mera and Shadow’s relationship. I loved reading about their relationship in their own books but I felt that Mera’s pregnancy overshadowed Angel and her story so I felt my enjoyment in the story wane a little.

Overall I did enjoy Deserted but there were some things I didn’t like about it mainly Mera’s pregnancy overshadowing Angel’s story. I did like reading about Angel and I enjoyed the romance between her and Reece despite his possessiveness and I’m excited to read about the other characters in other books.

book review

Book Review: Message Not Found by Dante Medema

message not found1Book: Message Not Found
Author: Dante Medema
Age & Genre: YA contemporary mystery

Bailey and Vanessa shared everything: laughter, secrets, and packets of Pop Rocks to ward off bad days. But that all changed the night Vanessa left Bailey’s, headed for home, and ended up swerving off a cliff nowhere near her house. Now Bailey, who thought she knew Vanessa better than anyone in the world, is left with a million unanswered questions, and the only person with answers is gone.

To help grieve her loss, Bailey creates a chat bot of Vanessa using years’ worth of their shared text messages and emails. The more data she uploads to the bot, the more it feels like she’s really talking to her best friend. That is, until the bot starts dropping hints that there was more going on with Vanessa than Bailey realized–a secret so big, it may have contributed to Vanessa’s death.

My Rating: 4 STARS

(I was sent an arc of this book by the publisher)

My Review:

I was intrigued by this book right away, I thought the writing flowed very well. I liked how it is formatted with short chapters and Bailey’s chat logs with ‘V’, it made it feel like such a quick read.

I liked the chat bot part of this book and thought it was interesting how Bailey tried to deal with her grief by setting up the chat log with Vanessa. I liked how the friendship of Bailey and Vanessa is the focus of this book and how we see Bailey go from having such a perfect version of her best friend in her head to questioning some of the things she thought she knew about her. I also enjoyed the mentions of book blogging and bookstagram.

I liked Bailey’s friendship with Esther that slowly develops throughout this book, I thought it was a nice easy friendship. I didn’t care much about the romance of the book, it was okay but felt like it was an obvious thing from the beginning.

There is a mystery aspect to the story with Vanessa and what she was doing the night she died. I did enjoy the build up of the mystery and I liked how the author kept me intrigued throughout but I did think the ending was a bit cliché.

Overall I did enjoy Message Not Found, I thought the story was intriguing and the writing was emotional. I did think the ending was cliché but I liked the themes of grief and friendship that were the main focus of the book.

book review

Book Review: A Shadow in the Ember (Flesh and Fire #1) by Jennifer L. Armentrout

a shadow in the emberBook: A Shadow in the Ember
Series: Flesh and Fire #1
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Age & Genre: New adult/adult fantasy romance

Born shrouded in the veil of the Primals, a Maiden as the Fates promised, Seraphena Mierel’s future has never been hers. Chosen before birth to uphold the desperate deal her ancestor struck to save his people, Sera must leave behind her life and offer herself to the Primal of Death as his Consort.

However, Sera’s real destiny is the most closely guarded secret in all of Lasania—she’s not the well protected Maiden but an assassin with one mission—one target. Make the Primal of Death fall in love, become his weakness, and then…end him. If she fails, she dooms her kingdom to a slow demise at the hands of the Rot.

Sera has always known what she is. Chosen. Consort. Assassin. Weapon. A specter never fully formed yet drenched in blood. A monster. Until him. Until the Primal of Death’s unexpected words and deeds chase away the darkness gathering inside her. And his seductive touch ignites a passion she’s never allowed herself to feel and cannot feel for him. But Sera has never had a choice. Either way, her life is forfeit—it always has been, as she has been forever touched by Life and Death.

My Rating: 5 STARS

My Review:

A Shadow in the Ember is the start of a prequel series to the Blood and Ash series and I loved it. Since I’m already familiar with the world and writing of this series I found I was more quickly drawn into A Shadow in the Ember than I was with From Blood and Ash and loved it from the first few chapters.

A Shadow in the Ember has a lot of similarities to the Blood and Ash series, it feels like this series seems to foreshadow what’s to come in that series and I enjoyed theorising on how the two series connect.

I liked Seraphena from the beginning, I liked her edge and how she wasn’t afraid to say what she’s thinking. Nyktos is also an interesting character and I loved how he and Seraphena engaged with each other. Their meetings with each other were always intriguing and fun to read and I liked how they got to know each other through these small interactions before the story progressed.

The story was captivating and made me not want to put the book down. Like with the books in the Blood and Ash series there are a lot of twists and turns in the story that always keeps you hooked and we also find out more about the world.

Overall I loved A Shadow in the Ember, I was captivated by the world and the characters in this book. I was quickly drawn into this story and I can’t wait for the release of the next book, I’m excited to read about Seraphena and Nyktos again.

book review

Book Review: The Crown of Gilded Bones (Blood and Ash #3) by Jennifer L. Armentrout

the crown of gilded bonesBook: The Crown of Gilded Bones
Series: Blood and Ash #3
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Age & Genre: Adult fantasy romance

She’s been the victim and the survivor…

Poppy never dreamed she would find the love she’s found with Prince Casteel. She wants to revel in her happiness but first they must free his brother and find hers. It’s a dangerous mission and one with far-reaching consequences neither dreamed of. Because Poppy is the Chosen, the Blessed. The true ruler of Atlantia. She carries the blood of the King of Gods within her. By right the crown and the kingdom are hers.

The enemy and the warrior…

Poppy has only ever wanted to control her own life, not the lives of others, but now she must choose to either forsake her birthright or seize the gilded crown and become the Queen of Flesh and Fire. But as the kingdoms’ dark sins and blood-drenched secrets finally unravel, a long-forgotten power rises to pose a genuine threat. And they will stop at nothing to ensure that the crown never sits upon Poppy’s head.

A lover and heartmate…

But the greatest threat to them and to Atlantia is what awaits in the far west, where the Queen of Blood and Ash has her own plans, ones she has waited hundreds of years to carry out. Poppy and Casteel must consider the impossible—travel to the Lands of the Gods and wake the King himself. And as shocking secrets and the harshest betrayals come to light, and enemies emerge to threaten everything Poppy and Casteel have fought for, they will discover just how far they are willing to go for their people—and each other.

And now she will become Queen…

My Rating: 5 STARS

My Review:

The Crown of Gilded Bones takes place directly where A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire leaves off with the shock twist of Poppy and who she really is. It starts off with this twist and the book continues to shock throughout with different revelations, each more powerful than the last.

I loved The Crown of Gilded Bones and didn’t want it to end. Like I said before there were so many different twists to the story and you find out so much new information. You find out so much more about the world and the different creatures and beings of it that it can feel a bit overwhelming at first. And even though it is overwhelming at first I still enjoyed each new reveal because it really kept me intrigued and wanting to know more.

We find out more about Poppy which changes some of her interactions with the other characters like Kieran and the Wolven. And I liked this change in their dynamic and how protective Kieran and the other Wolven now are with her. The conversations between Poppy and Kieran were interesting and I liked Casteel’s reaction to the whole thing.

I enjoyed Poppy and Casteel’s relationship in this book more because they are a much more solid couple and they both know how much they mean to each other now and how far they’re willing to go for the other. What I also enjoyed about this book is we see Ian and have scenes with him and Poppy which I feel we’ve been waiting to happen for a while.

Overall I loved The Crown of Gilded Bones and thought it was very interesting and it gives you a lot of information as to how the overall world works and the history of it but at the same time I feel like there is still so much more to learn. The ending was action packed with so many different things happening and I can’t wait for the next book to be released.