Hi everyone! Today I’m excited to participate in the book tour for The Ivory Key written by Akshaya Raman, hosted by the UK publisher Hot Key Books. The Ivory Key is out today and you can purchase it from your local bookstores & online retailers- links to some of which are mentioned below.Continue reading “BOOK TOUR | Book Review: The Ivory Key by Akshaya Raman”
Hi everyone! Today I’m excited to participate in the book tour for The Jasmine Throne written by Tasha Suri, hosted by Caffeine Book Tours. The Jasmine Throne is out in the world already and you can purchase it from your local bookstores & online retailers- links to some of which are mentioned below.Continue reading “BOOK TOUR | Book Review: The Jasmine Throne by Tasha Suri”
Hi everyone! Today I’m excited to participate in the blog tour for NIGHT SPINNER by Addie Thorley hosted by FFBC! It is described as, “A must-read for fans of Leigh Bardugo’s Grishaverse, transforming The Hunchback of Notre Dame into a powerful tundra-inspired epic.”
Guilt stricken and scarred, Enebish tries to be grateful for her sanctuary, until her adoptive sister, Imperial Army commander Ghoa, returns from the war front with a tantalizing offer. If Enebish can capture the notorious criminal, Temujin, whose band of rebels has been seizing army supply wagons, not only will her crimes be pardoned, she will be reinstated as a warrior.
Enebish eagerly accepts. But as she hunts Temujin across the tundra, she discovers the tides of war have shifted, and the supplies he’s stealing are the only thing keeping thousands of shepherds from starving. Torn between duty and conscience, Enebish must decide whether to put her trust in the charismatic rebel or her beloved sister. No matter who she chooses, an even greater enemy is advancing, ready to bring the empire to its knees.
– My Thoughts –
“I’m still me beneath these scars. I’m still a girl beneath the monster.”
Night Spinner is a YA fantasy inspired by The Hunchback of Notre Dame, which was not what attracted me to the book at first. The ability of the character to control darkness is one magic I have yet to read in a fantasy so I was naturally intrigued.
Enebish, our protagonist, is an ex-soldier living at a monastery now after she allegedly lost control of her powers and killed an entire caravan of merchants. She’s both physically and mentally disfigured, has no hope left until her adopted sister Ghoa comes along offering her the chance to gain freedom. However, it comes with a high price: Enebish has to work with the rebels as a spy. The only one on her side is her friend Serik who believes in her with all his heart.
“I want to claw these thoughts from my head, but, like parasites, they’ve already burrowed too deep.”
What I didn’t like was how naïve the character acted at times though and I didn’t like the first half of the book. I loved Enebish’s character development and my heart really broke for her when we came to the ultimate twist in the story. Ghoa and Temujin were two other side characters who I was genuinely excited for. Both of these morally grey characters were someone Enebish was glad to follow(after some persuasion, for one) and in the end, you end up either hating or loving them.
“Be humble, for you are made of Earth.
Be noble, for you are made of Stars.”
I loved the magic system here and I would love to see how other powers work in the upcoming book(/s). I also loved that meddling gods and their children are present in this story as well. The story also has little romance and plenty of political intrigue so for those craving these elements in a fantasy book, you won’t be disappointed
Overall, I would recommend this if you’d like to read about a fantasy about a country in war and a girl trying to save it without losing herself. Although there are some similarities to The Hunchback.., I don’t know if it’d be right to call it a retelling.
Thanks to the publisher for gifting me an ARC in exchange for an honest review and to FFBC for including me in the blog tour!
– Giveaway –
Win one hardcover of Night Spinner. Enter here. Open to US/CAN residents only! Ends on February 25th, 2020
Click this link to see the entire Tour Schedule. Make sure to visit the rest of the tour stops to get more chances to win!
– About the Author –
Addie Thorley is the author of An Affair of Poisons, a YA historical fantasy, which was chosen as a Barnes and Noble Discover Great New Writers selection and is a YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults nominee. Her forthcoming novel, Night Spinner, will be released on February 11, 2020. She spent her childhood playing soccer, riding horses, and scribbling stories. After graduating from the University of Utah with a degree in journalism, Addie decided “hard news” didn’t contain enough magic and kissing, so she flung herself into the land of fiction and never looked back. She now lives in Princeton, New Jersey with her husband, daughter, and wolf dog. When she’s not writing she can be found gallivanting in the woods or galloping around the barn where she works as a horse trainer and exercise rider. Follow her on:
Website | Goodreads | Twitter | Instagram
Thank you for reading! Do you think you’ll read Night Spinner? If you’ve already read it, then I’d love to know what you thought as well!
IN A WORLD OF MAGIC, NOTHING IS EVER AS IT SEEMS …
From young author Coco Ma comes a dazzling new tale of adventure, power, and betrayal, weaving together a stunning world of magic with a killer cast in an explosive, unforgettable debut.
IN THE KINGDOM OF AXARIA, a darkness rises. Some call it a monster, laying waste to the villagers and their homes. Some say it is an invulnerable demon summoned from the deepest abysses of the Immortal Realm. Many soldiers from the royal guard are sent out to hunt it down. Not one has ever returned.
When Asterin Faelenhart, Princess of Axaria and heir to the throne, discovers that she may hold the key to defeating the mysterious demon terrorizing her kingdom, she vows not to rest until the beast is slain. With the help of her friends and the powers she wields — though has yet to fully understand — Asterin sets out to complete a single task. The task that countless, trained soldiers have failed.
To kill it.
But as they hunt for the demon, they unearth a plot to assassinate the Princess herself instead. Asterin and her companions begin to wonder how much of their lives have been lies, especially when they realize that the center of the web of deceit might very well be themselves. With no one else to turn to, they are forced to decide just how much they are willing to sacrifice to protect the only world they have ever known.
That is, of course… if the demon doesn’t get to them first.
– My Thoughts –
Instead of writing a review, I’m going to list Five Reasons You Should read Shadow Frost:
I) If you love stories with multiple point-of-views
II) If you love stories about a group of misfits
III) If you love stories about princesses kicking ass and taking names!
IV) If you love quality banter!
V) If you love stories about demons wreaking havoc and gods meddling as usual
Overall, I found this debut fantasy by Coco Ma very promising and deliciously fun! Thanks to MTMC tours for gifting me a copy in exchange for an honest review.
– About the Author –
Coco Ma is a Canadian-Chinese author and pianist. She wrote her first novel, Shadow Frost, at the age of 15. Since she began playing the piano at the age of five and a half, she has also performed on some of the world’s greatest concert stages and graduated with a pre-college diploma in piano performance from The Juilliard School in New York City. Currently, she studies at Yale University. When she isn’t practicing piano, writing, or studying, you might find her bingeing Netflix or eating cake. Lots of cake.
INTL Tour-Wide Giveaway
Head over to my Instagram account for a chance to win one of THREE prize packs that include: One hardcover copy of Shadow Frost + Blackstone tote bag! Open INTL!
(And don’t miss out the rest of the tour stops to get more chances to win!!!)
@ve_xo – Bookstagram
@thebibliolife – Bookstagram
@_ckarys – Bookstagram
@old.enough.for.fairytales – Bookstagram
@b.b.lynnreads – Bookstagram
Thank you for reading! Have you read Shadow Frost? Are you excited to read it? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!
Bound as one to love, honor, or burn.
Two years ago, Louise le Blanc fled her coven and took shelter in the city of Cesarine, forsaking all magic and living off whatever she could steal. There, witches like Lou are hunted. They are feared. And they are burned.
Sworn to the Church as a Chasseur, Reid Diggory has lived his life by one principle: thou shalt not suffer a witch to live. His path was never meant to cross with Lou’s, but a wicked stunt forces them into an impossible union—holy matrimony.
The war between witches and Church is an ancient one, and Lou’s most dangerous enemies bring a fate worse than fire. Unable to ignore her growing feelings, yet powerless to change what she is, a choice must be made.
And love makes fools of us all.
– My Thoughts –
“Wicked are the ways of women — and especially a witch”
I first read Serpent & Dove as an eARC and I was mesmerized by the way the author combined some of my favourite tropes – enemies to lovers romance, Marriage of Convenience – to create a wonderful fantasy set against the backdrop of 17th century France.
After I got the physical ARC, I read it again and here are my final thoughts…
In the land of Belterra, witches are burned at the stake and the witch hunters or the Chasseurs along with their leader, the Archbishop are ruthless. Lou, a witch, has left her coven two years ago and is now trying to survive in the city of Cesarine either by lying, stealing or even killing. After remaining undetected for two years, a burglary goes wrong and it sets her past enemies after her. When Lou ends up in a “compromising” position with Captain (of the Chasseurs) Reid, the Archbishop comes up with a solution: go to prison for the rest of her life or marry Reid.
“Conscious of the Chasseurs’ eyes on me, I forced a smirk and bumped my husband’s hip, pretending that it’d all been a show. A laugh. That I’d just been goading him to get a reaction.
That I wasn’t a witch in Mass, standing amongst my enemies and worshipping someone else’s god.
Lou agrees to marry Reid, a witch-hunter, as he can also offer protection from those who are hunting her. Reid, despite his initial scorn towards Lou, agrees to marry her and protect her.
It was fun seeing the progression of their relationship; their good-natured bickering and Reid slowly welcoming Lou into his life. This slow-burning romance climaxed into an explicit sex scene which made me wonder why it was categorized as YA. The characters act mature enough and the themes justify this book to be placed under NA rather than YA.
There wasn’t much world-building to speak of and this is what I missed during my first read. Sure, the writing is magical and so is the romance; there are well-placed plot twists and lots of well-timed action that made this book very addictive. However, it could have been more magical if there was good world-building at play. The magical system was very unique; some witches used blood while others offered some sort of sacrifice in exchange for using magic. Since this is the first book in a series, I have high hopes that the world is going to expand and we’re going to get a deeper look into the world of Lou and Reid.
Overall, I would highly recommend this book if you love enemies to lovers, slow-burn and marriage of convenience tropes; fantasy about witches set in 17th century France, smartass and badass female characters, amazing female friendships, morally grey characters, an intricate magical system, and engaging writing.
Thanks to the publisher for gifting me a copy in exchange for an honest review.
– About the Author –
Shelby Mahurin grew up on a small farm in rural Indiana, where sticks became wands and cows became dragons. Her rampant imagination didn’t fade with age, so she continues to play make-believe every day—with words now instead of cows. When not writing, Shelby watches the Office and obsesses over her Twitter feed. She still lives near that childhood farm with her very tall husband, semi-feral toddlers, two dogs, and one cat.
Shelby’s favorite books include A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas, Uprooted by Naomi Novik, The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, and, of course, Harry Potter.
Her debut novel, SERPENT & DOVE, will release from Harper Teen in Fall 2019, with a sequel to come the following year. She is represented by Sarah Landis of Sterling Lord Literistic.
Thank you for reading! Have you read Serpent & Dove? Is it on your wish-list? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!