A journey into the wonderful yet terrifying world of the unknown | ARC Review: Dark Shores by Danielle L. Jensen

A journey into the wonderful yet terrifying world of the unknown | ARC Review: Dark Shores by Danielle Jensen

ARC Review: Dark Shores by Danielle Jensen

About the Book: Publisher: Tor Teen Publication Date: 7th May, 2019 Paperback(ARC): 368 Pages Genres: YA Contemporary
Goodreads Buy: Book Depository | Wordery


In a world divided by meddlesome gods and treacherous oceans, only the Maarin possess the knowledge to cross the Endless Seas. But they have one mandate: East must never meet West.


Teriana is the second mate of the Quincense and heir to the Maarin Triumvirate. Her people are born of the seas and the keepers of its secrets, but when her closest friend is forced into an unwanted betrothal, Teriana breaks her people’s mandate so her friend might escape—a choice with devastating consequences. 


Marcus is the commander of the Thirty-Seventh, the notorious legion that has led the Celendor Empire to conquer the entire East. The legion is his family, but even they don’t know the truth he’s been hiding since childhood. It’s a secret he’ll do anything to protect, no matter how much it costs him – and the world. 


When an Empire senator discovers the existence of the Dark Shores, he captures Teriana’s crew and threatens to reveal Marcus’s secret unless they sail in pursuit of conquest, forcing the two into an unlikely—and unwilling—alliance. They unite for the sake of their families, but both must decide how far they are willing to go, and how much they are willing to sacrifice.

Should You read Dark Shores by Danielle L. Jensen?

“You cannot tell, you cannot tell…. Better to die than to tell.”

Dark Shores
 is a YA fantasy and is a story about a pirate, a soldier and a dangerous quest they have to embark on. It’s purely plot driven and you’ll feel like you’re going on an adventure. Perhaps, this is why I loved the book so much. Let me tell you a bit about the story.

The story begins in Celendor where we see Teriana, one of our protagonists, who disembarks off of her ship and goes to find her best friend. Teriana is not a Celendorian but she’s a Maarin who are seafaring people and mainly come to Celendor for business purposes. When Teriana sees her best friend after a long time, she divulges the secrets of the West aka the Dark Shores to her. That was a mistake as the “East must NOT Meet West”. As a consequence of divulging these secrets, Teriana looses most of her crew when they are attacked by a ship of the Celendor Empire.

“They think I’m just the daughter of a merchant captain. they don’t realize that my word carries weight with kings.”


On the other hand, we meet Marcus who’s the commander of the Thirty-Seventh, the deadliest legion that has been paramount to the Empire in conquering the entire East. Soon, Marcus is called to a senator named Cassius’ home, where he blackmails Marcus into voting for him at a Senate election. Marcus has two choices: Vote for Cassius and let Celendor be ruled by a dictator or let Cassius out his secret which would destroy his family and make his soldiers doubt him.

When Teriana and her crew is captured, she’s tortured and questioned about the “mythical” Dark Shores or the lands in the West. Marcus, who’s present during the questioning along with Cassius, offers Teriana a chance to save her mother and the rest of her crew or die along with them. However, saving them would require a sacrifice of a different kind: revealing the secret of Dark Shores. In the end, Teriana leaves with her crew, Marcus and his troops in a dangerous journey to the previously undiscovered, previously mythical Dark Shores. Will they survive this perilous journey? As the path to the Dark Shores is guarded by Gods and half-gods who have fought and succeeded at keeping this part of the world a secret.

“Makes one wonder how many secrets you harbor.”


If you love reading about adventures, plots that go all twisty when you least expect it to, then you should definitely read Dark Shores! This book is the first in a series and that’s why you’ll find most of the scenes open to interpretation. For example, you’ll wonder about Marcus: is he the villian or the hero..or the anti-hero? Marcus is another unique character because he isn’t “fit” to head an army yet he does that impeccably. I thought of him as an anti-hero because the secrets he still keeps from Teriana at the end of the novel. Besides Marcus, I loved Teriana.. her fierceness and her loyalty to those she loved. She suffers a lot to keep the secret of the Dark Shores and there’s also a hint of some other secrets that she’s been keeping. There’s no memorable villian yet. Cassius was cruel yes but he didn’t go full on psycho or something to make him memorable. There’s an introduction of a possible villian but you’ll have to wait until book 2 to see the full picture.

I liked the world building but what I loved most was the journey on the way to Dark Shores, which was an integral part of the story. Dark Shores is inspired by Roman history and you can see quite a few similarities there. It was filled with action and there’s a scene where Gods battle each other; I would have loved to see the Gods play a major role in this story. If you’re interested in a readalong (and also win a prize), go to Danielle Jensen’s insta as she’s hosting one!

Overall, I highly recommend this book if you love reading stories filled with adventures on the high seas, badass ladies at the helm, soft boys who’ve no option but to fight in their legion, and slow burn romances. Also, I recommend Dark Shores to you if you loved To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo, Seafire by Natalie C. Parker or Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller.

Thanks to the publisher for gifting me a copy in exchange for an honest review.


Author: Connect with Author Danielle L. Jensen  here.

A journey into the wonderful yet terrifying world of the unknown | ARC Review: Dark Shores by Danielle L. Jensen

What do you think? Will you read Dark Shores? If you have read it already, then let me know if you liked it or not. If you’ve read any of the books I recommended with Dark Shores, let me know in the comments below!

Blog Tour + International Giveaway: The Deceivers by Kristen Simmons

Hi everyone! I’m so excited to be a part of the Official Blog Tour for The Deceivers by Kristen Simmons. After you check out my reasons of why I loved reading The Deceivers , do participate in the giveaway(scroll down) .You can visit the rest of the blogs in the tour here.

I didn’t think I would like this book so I went in with zero expectations ..and GUESS WHAT ? I loved the book !

The Deceivers is about Brynn Hilder who lives a hard life but her luck soon changes when a boy begins following after her. Soon, Brynn stumbles upon a private party which is actually a game organized by a couple of teenagers. These teenagers go to a private school for con artists in the Vale Hill Estate and they have organized this game to recruit a new student. Brynn is told that if she wins the game, she will be set for life and will get a full scholarship to any college.

Brynn has nothing to lose so she participates in the game not knowing if she has won the coveted position until the next day. Vale Hall must be a dream comes true for Brynn but she soon realizes that to make her dreams come too, she’ll have to con a senator’s son for it. Is she cut out for this lifestyle or will she be wiped out of existence as another girl before her?

Why should you read this book? Love reading about con artists? Think Matt Bomer in White Collar(uh..that’s the only example I can remember now) Love the idea of a ​lavish school for con artists? Swoon-worthy guys and girls?

If you answered yes to all of the questions ,then buy or borrow yourself a copy of this! You can also try your luck in the giveaway below.

I want to thank Tor teen , Kristen Simmons and Jean BookNerd tour for sending me an eARC .

Verdict: 4 out of 5 stars

Hardcover: 384 pages

Publisher: Tor Teen (February 5, 2019)

Language: English

Pretty Little Liars meets Ocean’s 11 in this intrigue-filled contemporary drama from acclaimed author Kristen Simmons.

Welcome to Vale Hall, the school for aspiring con artists.

When Brynn Hilder is recruited to Vale, it seems like the elite academy is her chance to start over, away from her mom’s loser boyfriend and her rundown neighborhood. But she soon learns that Vale chooses students not so much for their scholastic talent as for their extracurricular activities, such as her time spent conning rich North Shore kids out of their extravagant allowances.

At first, Brynn jumps at the chance to help the school in its mission to rid the city of corrupt officials–because what could be better than giving entitled jerks what they deserve? But that’s before she meets her mark–a senator’s son–and before she discovers the school’s headmaster has secrets he’ll stop at nothing to protect. As the lines between right and wrong blur, Brynn begins to realize she’s in way overhead.

You can purchase The Deceivers at the following Retailers:
Photo Content from Kristen Simmons

KRISTEN SIMMONS is the author of the ARTICLE 5 series, THE GLASS ARROW, and METALTOWN. She has worked with survivors of abuse and trauma as a mental health therapist, taught Jazzercise in five states, and is forever in search of the next best cupcake. Currently, she lives in Cincinnati, Ohio with her husband, where she spends her days supporting the caffeine industry and chasing her delightfully rambunctious son.

International Giveaway 

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