October 31, 2011

Review: Brightest Kind of Darkness, by P.T. Michelle

Author: P.T. Michelle
Title: Brightest Kind of Darkness
Series: Brightest Kind of Darkness (#1)
Publisher: Patrice Michelle (2011)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Nara Collins is an average sixteen-year-old, with one exception: every night she dreams the events of the following day. Due to an incident in her past, Nara avoids using her special gift to change fate…until she dreams a future she can’t ignore. 

After Nara prevents a bombing at Blue Ridge High, her ability to see the future starts to fade, while people at school are suddenly being injured at an unusually high rate.

Grappling with her diminishing powers and the need to prevent another disaster, Nara meets Ethan Harris, a mysterious loner who seems to understand her better than anyone. Ethan and Nara forge an irresistible connection, but as their relationship heats up, so do her questions about his dark past
.“ GoodReads’ blurb


I do have one roaring complaint about Brightest Kind of Darkness: I want more of it!

There are so many things I thoroughly enjoyed from this book. For starters, the action was non-stop. From the opening scene, which put me on edge and shot up my adrenaline even when I wasn’t yet invested in the characters, all the way through to the very end, I was glued to the pages and unable to turn away! Every spare moment I had, I invested into reading more, into trying to figure out the mystery of the dreams and the visions and the crows and...

October 30, 2011

In My Mailbox #13

In my Mailbox time! Thanks a lot over to thestorysiren.com for coming up with the idea for this meme, because I really enjoy sharing what I bought or received each week for review. This time the selection is small but sweet. Ready to see? Here it comes!

October 28, 2011

Review: Witch Eyes, by Scott Tracey

Author: Scott Tracey
Title: Witch Eyes
Series: Witch Eyes (#1)
ISBN: 9780738729695
Publisher: Flux (2011)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

“Braden was born with witch eyes: the ability to see the world as it truly is: a blinding explosion of memories, darkness, and magic. The power enables Braden to see through spells and lies, but at the cost of horrible pain.

After a terrifying vision reveals imminent danger for the uncle who raised and instructed him, Braden retreats to Belle Dam, an old city divided by two feuding witch dynasties. As rival family heads Catherine Lansing and Jason Thorpe desperately try to use Braden's powers to unlock Belle Dam's secrets, Braden vows never to become their sacrificial pawn. But everything changes when Braden learns that Jason is his father--and Trey, the enigmatic guy he's falling for, is Catherine's son.

To stop an insidious dark magic from consuming the town, Braden must master his gift—and risk losing the one he loves.“
GoodReads’ blurb


Long review in just a few words: What are you waiting for? Go and buy this!

Now, a bit more clearly – a bit more like myself:

I read Witch Eyes because I saw a review from a trusted blogger, and because I saw the cover. And the results? Astounding. To put it simply, this title is the most original take on paranormal romance I’ve seen lately.

October 26, 2011

Review: worldoflegends.com, by Nigel Osner

Author: Nigel Osner
Title: worldoflegends.com: a tale of two spinners
ISBN: 9781440163203
Publisher: iUniverse (2009)
Disclaimer: Copy received for review purposes.

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

“Henry Prince is a nervous law student who lives in London. One summer he comes across a former school-friend, Rupert, now a spin doctor. Rupert shows Henry a fantasy world, which can be glimpsed through a website. This world contains all sorts of legendary heroes and villains, from human to everything else! Rupert swaps worlds with his look-alike, Rumpelstiltskin. Rupert tries to help some of legend's well known bad guys improve their image. Rumpelstiltskin offers the possibility of limitless gold to a Government minister. Henry, to his very great horror, finds himself transported to the world of legends. There he is known as a hero called Prince Henry and is expected to live up to his name! Ultimately the barrier between both worlds starts to break down, largely because of Rupert's meddling. Henry has to become a big enough hero to set up a new legend of his own, one strong enough to get the fantasy world back on course.“ GoodReads’ blurb


I think I understand what the author has tried to do with worldoflegends.com, and I’m fairly sure I can appreciate it, though it is something slightly different from other titles.

The thing that stood out the most for me was the style: the narration is direct, with a very simple and straightforward grammar, and sentences are short and to the point. This serves to duplicate the tone of a folk fairy tale, and it is quite successful at it.

October 25, 2011

Review: The Iron Knight, by Julie Kagawa

Author: Julie Kagawa
Title: The Iron Knight
Series: The Iron Fey (4)
ISBN: 9780062021250
Publisher: Harlequin Teen (2011)

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

My name—my True Name—is Ashallayn'darkmyr Tallyn.

I am the last remaining son of Mab, Queen of the Unseelie Court. And I am dead to her.

My fall began, as many stories do, with a girl…” GoodReads’ blurb.


There are many young adult books I love, but there aren’t many where I can’t pinpoint a single thing I did not like. I believe The Iron Fey is the one and only standing title in that category.

At this point, I think we all know how The Iron Queen ended. I think we all cried and screamed, and knew that it just could not end like that. The Iron Knight takes up this cry of despair and delivers a fairy tale happy ending – and in what a way!

October 24, 2011

Spooktacular Giveaway Hop!

Halloween must be one of my favorite holidays of all time. Beyond the costumes and the candy, it does feel... special.

So, because I want to celebrate it this year with you all, I joined the Spooktacular Giveaway Hop and decided to share one of my new favorite books:

October 23, 2011

In My Mailbox #12

I skipped last week because I actually managed to hold my convictions and not buy anything... And I promise, this week's short! Kinda... Anyway, ready to see what I just got?

October 22, 2011

Review: Nevermore, by Kelly Creagh

Author: Kelly Creagh
Title: Nevermore
Series: Nevermore (#1)
ISBN: 9781442402003
Publisher: Atheneum (2010)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

“Cheerleader Isobel Lanley is horrified when she is paired with Varen Nethers for an English project, which is due—so unfair—on the day of the rival game. Cold and aloof, sardonic and sharp-tongued, Varen makes it clear he’d rather not have anything to do with her either. But when Isobel discovers strange writing in his journal, she can’t help but give this enigmatic boy with the piercing eyes another look.   

Soon, Isobel finds herself making excuses to be with Varen. Steadily pulled away from her friends and her possessive boyfriend, Isobel ventures deeper and deeper into the dream world Varen has created through the pages of his notebook, a realm where the terrifying stories of Edgar Allan Poe come to life.   

As her world begins to unravel around her, Isobel discovers that dreams, like words, hold more power than she ever imagined, and that the most frightening realities are those of the mind. Now she must find a way to reach Varen before he is consumed by the shadows of his own nightmares.

His life depends on it.“ GoodReads’ blurb


From time to time, I stumble upon something that not only is good material, but which also happens to touch upon my favorite subjects, or to present characters I identify particularly well with. That’s the case with Nevermore: it’s one of those reads I’d take on for work as well as for pleasure.

October 20, 2011

Review: Lastborn, by Rachel Forde

Author: Rachel Forde
Title: Lastborn
Series: The Sixth Cycle (#1)
Publisher: Isabella Press (2011)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Nara-Ya is a pugnacious adolescent girl on the run from a powerful sorceress. Fate lands her in the company of her polar opposite, the soft-spoken Donovan Brennan, who is simultaneously struggling to lead a Resistance movement, regain a throne for a wronged King, and prevent a war between the land he lives in and the land of his birth.

Brennan walks a fine line between his principles and success; Nara-Ya, by contrast, knows what she has to do to survive, and circumstances shunt her towards the life of a fighter and warrior. However, as war looms, as her friendship with Donovan grows into something more, and as Nara-Ya is forced to confront her darker instincts, she begins to question her destiny, and is forced to make a decision that will alter the fate of their world
GoodReads’ blurb


You know when you go into a book expecting something good and somehow the result turns out to be just plain amazing? That’s what happened with Lastborn: the blurb was promising, but the book? It blew me away!

October 17, 2011

Review: Linger, by Maggie Stiefvater

Author: Maggie Stiefvater
Title: Linger
Series: Wolves of Mercy Falls (#2)
ISBN: 9780545123280
Publisher: Scholastic Press (2010)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

In Maggie Stiefvater's Shiver, Grace and Sam found each other.  Now, in Linger, they must fight to be together. For Grace, this means defying her parents and keeping a very dangerous secret about her own well-being. For Sam, this means grappling with his werewolf past . . . and figuring out a way to survive into the future. Add into the mix a new wolf named Cole, whose own past has the potential to destroy the whole pack.  And Isabelle, who already lost her brother to the wolves . . . and is nonetheless drawn to Cole.
At turns harrowing and euphoric, Linger is a spellbinding love story that explores both sides of love -- the light and the dark, the warm and the cold -- in a way you will never forget." GoodReads’ blurb


Usually, when I’m reading a series, I worry about the second book keeping up with the first book’s quality and so on. It’s difficult, and not every title is up to the challenge. This time, though?

Linger blew Shiver out of the water.

October 11, 2011

Review: Jinn Nation, by Caroline Barnard-Smith

Author: Caroline Barnard-Smith
Title: Jinn Nation
Publisher: Little Hoot Press (2011)

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

“Once, the vampire Dylan had feared nothing and no one. He'd rampaged throughout the world on a seemingly never ending quest to fill his eternal years with the finest, most outrageous extravagances; with exquisite, soft-limbed young women and copious amounts of rich, vibrating blood. But life, however full of joy, inevitably changes.

Finding himself alone for the first time in his long unlife, Dylan turns to the preternatural race of savage creatures called the jinn - a path that inevitably leads him to Christa, a strangely childlike woman with the power to control minds and read thoughts. Mutually intrigued by each other, they set out on a blood-soaked road trip that crosses the United States and the Atlantic Ocean, finally leading them beyond the world itself to the mysterious fae kingdoms of the Inbetween.“
GoodReads’ blurb


I’m damn close to being the ultimate vampire fan, I think, and I have to admit that the premise for Jinn Nation was fascinating: vampires have been hunted to extinction, a new supernatural race is vying for control, and a couple of unlikely characters seem to be chosen by fate to navigate these difficult times as saviors or betrayers of helpless mankind.

October 9, 2011

In My Mailbox #11

Welcome yet another week to one of my favorite memes, hosted by The Story Siren! So, what did I get this week into my mailbox? What's new? Ready?

October 6, 2011

Review: Drinna, by Jared Gullage

Author: Jared Gullage
Title: Drinna
Publisher: eTreasures Publishing LLC(2010)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

“A young girl named Drinna awakes in a place called the Sea of Grass in the world of Trithofar. She does not understand how she arrived, nor where her merchant parents have gone. She knows, however, the Sea of Grass is a dangerous place. She finds she has no weapons, no food, no water; she has only the knowledge of the Sea of Grass her parents gave her to help her.    

But Drinna is a kunjel. She was returning home from abroad because her people must undergo a rite of passage to control the rage of the kunjels. Out here, in the Sea of Grass, the rage, uncontrolled, can both protect her or doom her.     

Worse still, the Sea of Grass is full of vicious monsters and dangerous enemy races. And atop all of this, someone is looking for her, to kill her...or worse“ GoodReads’ blurb


You know the metaphorical road trip of discovery and maturity that everyone of us should undergo at some point, preferably during our teen years? That’s the essence of Drinna, fantasy style, and I loved it.

October 4, 2011

Review: The Twilight of Lake Woebegotten, by Harrison Geillor

Author: Harrison Geillor
Title: The Twilight of Lake Woebegotten
ISBN: 9781597802840
Publisher: Night Shade Books (2011)

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

A small town... a plucky heroin, a shiny vampire, and a hunkey Native American rival with a secret. But all is not as it seems in Lake Woebegotten. Let Harrison Geillor reveal what lies beneath the seemingly placid surface. You'll Laugh. We promise.
When Bonnie Grayduck relocates from sunny Santa Cruz California to the small town of Lake Woebegotten, Minnesota, to live with her estranged father, chief of the local two-man police department, she thinks she's leaving her troubles behind. But she soon becomes fascinated by another student - the brooding, beautiful Edwin Scullen, whose reclusive family hides a terrible secret. (Psst: they're actually vampires. But they're the kind who don't eat people, so it's okay.) Once Bonnie realizes what her new lover really is, she isn't afraid. Instead, she sees potential. Because while Bonnie seems to her friends and family to be an ordinary, slightly clumsy, easily-distracted girl, she's really manipulative, calculating, power hungry, and not above committing murder to get her way - or even just to amuse herself. This is a love story about monsters... but the vampire isn't the monster.
” (GoodRead’s blurb)

I have one major grip about this book. We will Laugh, or so the synopsis promises us. And I didn’t.

I don’t mean to say that I did not find the humor amusing, because everyone is allowed a different brand of joke, but that I could not find the punch line, so to speak. It was not so much a parody of Twilight, but a what-if.

What if Bella had been a psychopath (or sociopath, I grew confused at the differentiation after all the explanation done in the novel)?  What if she had loved Edward in whatever twisted, manipulative way she could – and what if that love were fuelled more from a desire to become the perfect predator and less from his personality?

October 3, 2011

Banned Book Week Giveaway - We've got a winner!

So, I've totalled all the entries, checked all the extras, fed the info to Random.org and.... we've got ourselves a winner!

Congrats, Martina Koleva! 

I hope you'll enjoy the book.

If our winner doesn't acknowledge the winning or waives the book, Random.org will pick another lucky person and I'll update this post.

Thanks everyone for the interest you've shown! It's been great to share this week with you all!

October 2, 2011

In My Mailbox #10

One more week, welcome to peek into my mailbox! What did I get this time? A lot of incredible books! I'm serious, this load is just amazing... Ready to check it out? Here it comes!

October 1, 2011

100 Followers Giveaway - We've got winners!

So, the form closed and I spent a while totaling the entries and checking that everything was right and then I went and visited Random.org and... Whew! We've got winners! That's right, 2 because we broke through 150 (I'm so proud... *sniff sniff*) Ready to find out who? 

First prize, one book under 15$, goes to...  annejude

Second prize, one book under 10$, goes to... Lisa Richards!


I just mailed them. If for some reason they don't claim / want their prize, we'll go back to Random.org to fetch a brand-new winner and I'll update this post with the new names. 

Review: A Thief in the Night, by David Chandler

Author: David Chandler
Title: A Thief in the Night
Series: Ancient Blades Trilogy (2)
ISBN: 9780062021250
Publisher: HarperCollins (2011)

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Circumstance made him a criminal. Destiny may make him a hero. 

As a thief, Malden is unparalleled in the Free City of Ness, and happy there. But by saving the life of the knight Croy, Malden has bound himself to an ancient, noble brotherhood . . . and he now possesses one of only seven Ancient Blades capable of destroying demons. 

Malden fears accompanying Croy and the barbarian MÖrget on their quest to dispatch a foul creature of nightmare . . . nor does he want to disturb the vengeful dead. But with an assassin on his heels, the young cutpurse is left with no choice. And there is the comely sorceress, Cythera, to consider— promised to Croy but in love with Malden—not to mention the fabulous treasure rumored to be hidden in the depths of the demon’s lair . . .” GoodReads’ blurb.


I have said somewhere else that I’m a fan of the most classical epic fantasy. Books like A Thief in the Night are the reason: reading them feels like coming back home after a long and weary day.