Mundie Moms

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Cassie Shares New #Shadowhunters Art Featuring Jem & Tessa from Queen of Air and Darkness


It's JEM AND TESSA! I know it's not Will, but my word, I love this image that Cassie just shared on social media. In her newsletter yesterday, Cassie not only shared news about the first editions of Queen of Air and Darkness, she also shared this new fanart. This is from a scene from QOAAD. Here's what Cassie said:

A scene from Queen of Air and Darkness. Emma and Jem. Carstairs together – by Taratjah. #tsc #tda

I'm dying to know the scene. Find out more about the first editions of QOAAD here. Later this week I'll be sharing the excerpt from the book Cassie also shared in her newsletter. 

SAY YOU'LL REMEMBER ME by: Katie McGarry / Blog Tour: Book Review & Excerpt #SayYoullRememberMe


Welcome to the next stop in the SAY YOU'LL REMEMBER ME blog tour hosted by Inkslinger PR. I'm thrilled to share an excerpt from Katie McGarry's newest release, as well as my 4 star review. First, here's a little bit about the book: 

ABOUT THE BOOK



By: Katie McGarry
Published by: Harlequin Teen
Released on: January 30th, 2018
Purchase from: Amazon | B&N | iBooks | BAM | Kobo
Add it to Goodreads
Rating: 4 stars
An arc of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for my honest review

"Doesn't matter who did it. Not anymore. I did the time. It's over."


When Drix was convicted of a crime--one he didn't commit--he thought his life was over. But opportunity came with the Second Chance Program, the governor's newest pet project to get delinquents off the streets, rehabilitated and back into society. Drix knows this is his chance to get his life back on track, even if it means being paraded in front of reporters for a while.


Elle knows she lives a life of privilege. As the governor's daughter, she can open doors with her name alone. But the expectations and pressure to be someone she isn't may be too much to handle. She wants to follow her own path, whatever that means.


When Drix and Elle meet, their connection is immediate, but so are their problems. Drix is not the type of boy Elle's parents have in mind for her, and Elle is not the kind of girl who can understand Drix's messy life.


But sometimes love can breach all barriers.


Fighting against a society that can't imagine them together, Drix and Elle must push themselves--Drix to confront the truth of the robbery, and Elle to assert her independence--and each other to finally get what they deserve.


MY REVIEW

This is another Katie McGarry book I thoroughly enjoyed reading. She continues prove why she's one of my favorite realistic contemporary YA authors. McGarry has a knack for writing true to life characters, stories that emotionally get to me, and a romance that is full of tension and swoon worthy moments. This edgy, realistic, coming of age story is full of heartbreak, hope, and centers on two strong characters who fight for each other as much as their own freedom to just be themselves. 

McGarry writes teenage stories perfectly. I love the way she creates characters who have realistic, far from perfect lives. They learn to stand up for themselves, while in the process navigate their own lives, figure out who they are, and what it is they want. This story, like her previous ones is full of all the emotions, and experiences that come with being on the bring of independence. Like her previous characters, Elle and Drix quickly became characters I cared about. 

I absolutely loved that Elle became a character who found her voice, and wasn't afraid to use it. I greatly admired her for standing her ground. Drix is a little bit more complicated. What I liked about him, is that he accepted Elle for who she was, and helped her embrace the strong willed girl she was with him, vs the timid soft spoken girl she became around her over controlling parents. Elle and Drix brought out the best in each other, without forcing the other into being someone they aren't. 

I'm really hoping we'll get more from the characters in this book. Aside from Elle and Drix, there's a few characters I really enjoyed getting to know more about, like Axle and Holiday, Drix's brother and sister. I love that the secondary characters in this book play just as big as a role in the story as Elle and Drix. There's a couple cringe worthy characters in this book, including some adults. 

McGarry's book never disappoint me. This is another fast paced read I really enjoyed. Like each of her previous books, there is some mild language, and sexual tensions that lead to a few swoonworthy moments. 


READ AN EXCERPT
~Ellison~
The sights and sounds of the midway fade, and all I hear is buzzing. I close my eyes as more pissed-off tears fill my eyes.  Why won’t they go away?
“You okay?” a guy asks.
I open my eyes and focus on the ground. My eyes are red, I know they are. I can feel the puffiness of my skin. I take a deep breath, look up to explain I’m okay, and freeze.
Holy hell. It’s the boy from Whack-A-Mole. He’s so much more breathtaking this close, and I have no idea how that’s possible.
“Are those guys bothering you?” he asks.
My forehead furrows.  Yes, they are, but telling him the truth and inviting him into my problems seems wrong.  
“Since you’re so talkative, I’ll start the conversation,” he says. “If you want to get rid of those guys then stand here and talk to me, and I’ll stand here and talk to you. You can smile like you know me because it’s tough to make me smile, and it will seem fake. Then I can try to win you a stuffed animal. Won’t be a snake, but it will do. Those losers will catch on we’re friends. Eventually, they’ll keep walking, and then they’ll return to their loser frat house where they’ll play with themselves for the rest of the night because they don’t know how to properly talk to a girl.”
I blink because all thought processes have taken a mini break. Either that or I’m having a stroke.
“Just a smile. Maybe a few mumbled words. Tell me anything. Doesn’t have to be poetic. Just your lips moving in my direction without your current blank expression.”
I blink again, many times, as the sights, sounds and smells of the midway blast back as if someone had pushed the play button on my life. I flash the perfectly practiced public smile I’ve used too many other times in my life.
“I don’t know how to get them to leave me alone.” I pause, then the bitterness leaks out as well as a grim grin. “At least not without a baseball and a well-placed throw. Some people shouldn’t be allowed to continue their genetics.”
The right side of his mouth tips up, and my eyes narrow on him. “I thought you didn’t smile easily.”
“I have a twisted sense of humor, and I didn’t think a girl like you could make me laugh. You’ve done it twice now. That’s a record for the past year.”
I bristle, still on the dangerous edge of anger. “A girl like me?”
“Yeah, one that’s out of my league. Listen, if you want to get out of this situation without it escalating, let me know. Otherwise, I’ll take a step back, and you can do whatever you need. I’m all about helping, but I’m not looking to get into a fight. Your call on how this goes down, but if it’s violence, you’re on your own.”
He says he doesn’t want to partake in violence, but there’s an essence about him that says he could drop anyone at any time and do it without breaking a sweat.
He’s looking at me, I’m looking at him, and the flutter in my chest returns.

ORDER CAMPAIGN

Order SAY YOU'LL REMEMBER ME, register and you will receive AND THEY ALL LIVED HAPPILY EVER AFTER, a novella that features your favorite Pushing the Limits and Thunder Road characters!  

From the Pushing the Limits series, Noah, Beth, Isaiah, West and Logan are all grown up. Catch up with your favorite characters as one of them finally says, I do. Pigpen, Eli and Addison from the Thunder Road series: Three separate personalities who still needed to find love...and still had someone important to meet. 

This is a limited time offer! So hurry! Registration ends on February 3, 2018! You must register your order to receive AND THEY ALL LIVED HAPPILY EVER AFTER. https://a.pgtb.me/4tLZSM 


ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Katie McGarry was a teenager during the age of grunge and boy bands and remembers those years as the best and worst of her life. She is a lover of music, happy endings, reality television, and is a secret University of Kentucky basketball fan. Katie is the author of full length YA novels, PUSHING THE LIMITS, DARE YOU TO, CRASH INTO YOU, TAKE ME ON, BREAKING THE RULES, and NOWHERE BUT HERE and the e-novellas, CROSSING THE LINE and RED AT NIGHT. Her debut YA novel, PUSHING THE LIMITS was a 2012 Goodreads Choice Finalist for YA Fiction, a RT Magazine’s 2012 Reviewer’s Choice Awards Nominee for Young Adult Contemporary Novel, a double Rita Finalist, and a 2013 YALSA Top Ten Teen Pick. DARE YOU TO was also a Goodreads Choice Finalist for YA Fiction and won RT Magazine’s Reviewer’s Choice Best Book Award for Young Adult Contemporary fiction in 2013.  




'EVERYTHING. CHANGES. 12.4.18' - @cassieclare's #QOAAD Will Be Released! #shadowhunters #tsc #tda


We officially have a release date for QUEEN OF AIR AND DARKNESS! Cassie shared this official release date recently on social media. Speaking of this book, don't miss the information I shared from Cassie's newest newsletter about all the first editors for this book, here. Trust me, you're gong to want to make sure you've pre-orded your book. We can not wait for December 4th! 


ABOUT THE BOOK

Dark secrets and forbidden love threaten the very survival of the Shadowhunters in Cassandra Clare’s Queen of Air and Darkness, the final novel in the #1 New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling The Dark Artifices trilogy.

What if damnation is the price of true love?

Innocent blood has been spilled on the steps of the Council Hall, the sacred stronghold of the Shadowhunters. In the wake of the tragic death of Livia Blackthorn, the Clave teeters on the brink of civil war. One fragment of the Blackthorn family flees to Los Angeles, seeking to discover the source of the blight that is destroying the race of warlocks. 

Meanwhile, Julian and Emma take desperate measures to put their forbidden love aside and undertake a perilous mission to Faerie to retrieve the Black Volume of the Dead. What they find in the Courts is a secret that may tear the Shadow World asunder and open a dark path into a future they could never have imagined. Caught in a race against time, Emma and Julian must save the world of Shadowhunters before the deadly power of the parabatai curse destroys them and everyone they love.

. @CassieClare Talks GHOSTS OF THE SHADOW MARKET with Publisher's Weekly #Shadowhunters


Publisher's Weekly has a great article featuring Cassie Clare. The article, which you can read in full here, is about Cassie's upcoming release, Ghosts of the Shadow Market, writing, collaborating on her books with Holly Black, Sarah Rees Brennan, Maureen Johnson and Robin Wasserman, and more. Here's a snippet from the article:

Entitled Ghosts of the Shadow Market, the series will be set in the world of Clare’s The Shadowhunter Chronicles and include pieces by Clare, Maureen Johnson (Truly Devious), Robin Wasserman (Girls on Fire), Sarah Rees Brennan (In Other Lands), and Kelly Link (Get in Trouble). The stories will be released monthly from April through November on all major digital platforms, for $2.99 apiece.

The idea was hatched by the poolside in a small village outside Florence at the group’s 2017 retreat. “We were talking through aspects of our world-building,” said Clare, “and I was talking specifically about the Shadow Market. It’s sort of a lawless place in my books, where you can buy shady things and exchange shady goods for shady services.” When others in the group expressed interest in telling a series of co-authored stories that revolved around the market, the series was born.

The writers have a precedent to follow: two anthologies set in the Shadowhunters world—The Bane Chronicles (McElderry, 2014) and Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy (McElderry, 2016)—both of which sprang from earlier retreats.

Be sure to read the article in it's entirety, here

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

QUEEN OF AIR AND DARKNESS 1st Edition News from @CassieClare #Shadowhunters


Shadowhunter fans, if you're subscribed to Cassie's newsletters, check your inbox NOW! She's shared some exciting news today. Cassie shared some exciting news about the 1st edition copies of Queen of Air and Darkness! Here's what Cassie said:



Exclusive First Edition of Queen of Air and Darkness


I want to take a moment to talk to you about the first edition of Queen of Air and Darkness. For this book we’re going to do some pretty special stuff. The whole first printing will be an exclusive first edition. Once that first printing runs out, there won’t be any more exclusive editions printed.

The exclusive first edition will contain ten black and white illustrations by Alice Duke, who has done a couple of awesome illustrations for us before, and a full color poster printed on the back of the book jacket, also by Alice. In addition to this exclusive art, the first printing will include a short story that functions as a sequel to A Long Conversation.

As with Clockwork Princess, there will NOT be different editions with varying special content available at different bookstores. Instead there will be a limited number of first editions available to anyone who pre-orders or buys the book as soon as it comes out. Once they run out, they’re gone.

I love Alice’s work, and I’m really looking forward to seeing her illustrations bring Queen of Air and Darkness to life visually!



** ** ** ** ** 

If you haven't already, be sure to pre-order your copy! If you're not yet a subscriber to Cassie's newsletters, you can subscribe here. As always, I'll also share some more of the newsletter content later this week. 

OUT TODAY! 1/30/17 New YA Releases!


January is wrapping up with some fantastic new releases, out today! This has been an exciting month of YA releases. Happy Book Birthday to today's newest YA releases. Be sure to check out these titles, out on bookstore shelves now:


Which books are you looking forward to reading? If you don't see a new release on the list, please let me know in the comments below, and I'll add it. Happy Reading! 

Monday, January 29, 2018

BRING ME THEIR HEARTS by Sara Wolf / Cover Reveal #BringMeTheirHearts

I'm thrilled to team up with Entangled Teen to help reveal the cover for one of their most anticipated 2018 releases, BRING ME THEIR HEARTS by Sara Wolf.

CHECK OUT THIS COVER!


"This is a new series Publishers Weekly has listed as “one of the most anticipated YA's of 2018”. NYT bestselling author Sara Wolf delivers a fast-paced, gritty fantasy sure to thrill fans of Holly Black, Sabba Tahir, and Sarah J. Maas."

What do you think about this cover? I really like. Her facial expression says it all... I can not wait to read this book! It definitely sounds like my kind of read. Find out more about the book below:


ABOUT THE BOOK

By: Sara Wolf
Published by: Entangled Teen
To Be Released on: June 5th, 2018
Pre-Order from: The Publisher | Amazon | B&N | iTunes | Kobo
Add it to Goodreads

Zera is a Heartless—the immortal, unaging soldier of a witch. Bound to the witch Nightsinger ever since she saved her from the bandits who murdered her family, Zera longs for freedom from the woods they hide in. With her heart in a jar under Nightsinger’s control, she serves the witch unquestioningly.

Until Nightsinger asks Zera for a prince’s heart in exchange for her own, with one addendum: if she’s discovered infiltrating the court, Nightsinger will destroy Zera’s heart rather than see her tortured by the witch-hating nobles.

Crown Prince Lucien d’Malvane hates the royal court as much as it loves him—every tutor too afraid to correct him and every girl jockeying for a place at his darkly handsome side. No one can challenge him—until the arrival of Lady Zera. She’s inelegant, smart-mouthed, carefree, and out for his blood. The prince’s honor has him quickly aiming for her throat.

So begins a game of cat and mouse between a girl with nothing to lose and a boy who has it all.

Winner takes the loser’s heart.

Literally.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Sara Wolf is a twenty-something author who adores baking, screaming at her cats, and screaming at herself while she types hilarious things. When she was a kid, she was too busy eating dirt to write her first terrible book. Twenty years later, she picked up a keyboard and started mashing her fists on it and created the monster known as the Lovely Vicious series. She lives in San Diego with two cats, a crippling-yet-refreshing sense of self-doubt, and not enough fruit tarts ever.

Helen & Aline Are the Newest Shadowhunters & Fairytales / Mundane Monday #Shadowhunters


Happy Mundane Monday Shadowhunters! Last week in addition to sharing a new Queen of Air & Darkness snippet and an excerpt to celebrate Jace's birthday, Cassie also shared this new Shadowhunters & Fairytales picture, here. Here's what she shared:

The tower was tall and covered in briars but the brave warrior princess climbed it anyway for love of the beautiful Faerie maiden… ! Aline and Helen find themselves in Rapunzel in one of mine and Cassandra Jean’s fairytale/Shadowhunter mashups! #shadowhunters #tsc

I love this series. Which one is your favorite so far? You can check out the rest of them here.

Friday, January 26, 2018

THE DEFIANT by Lesley Livingston / Blog Tour: Book Review #TheDefiant


Welcome to the next stop in THE DEFIANT blog tour, hosted by Penguin Teen. I'm so thrilled to team up with PRH to promote a book that's been one of my most anticipated 2018 releases. Below you'll find my spoiler free review, along with information about both The Defiant, and The Valiant, along with the blog tour schedule. Be sure to follow the tour! 

 ABOUT THE BOOK



By: Lesley Livingston
Published by: Razorbill
Released on: 1/23/18
Pre-Order from: Amazon | B&N
Add it to Goodreads
Rating: 4.5 stars - I Really Enjoyed It
Source: arc from publisher / purchased copy of book
Thank you to PRH for providing an arc of this book in exchange for my honest review

The darling of the Roman Empire is in for the fight of her life in this lush sequel to the acclaimed historical fantasy The Valiant.
     Be brave, gladiatrix... And be wary. Once you win Caesar's love, you'll earn his enemies' hate.
Fallon was warned.

Now she is about to pay the price for winning the love of the Roman people as Caesar's victorious gladiatrix.

In this highly anticipated sequel to THE VALIANT, Fallon and her warrior sisters find themselves thrust into a vicious conflict with a rival gladiator academy, one that will threaten not only Fallon's heart - and her love for Roman soldier Cai - but the very heart of the ancient Roman Empire.

When dark treachery and vicious power struggles threaten her hard-won freedom, the only thing that might help the girl known as Victrix save herself and her sisters is a tribe of long-forgotten mythic Amazon warriors.

The only trouble is, they might just kill her themselves first.


Talk about girl power! This book is fueled by an amazing group of female gladiators that literally had me cheering for them the entire story line. Picking up not long after where The Valiant ends, this story wastes no time throwing it's readers into the surprising betrayal, and a rebellion that is a result of it. 

Fallon continues to amaze me. She, like many of the characters are fierce fighters, and strong both mentally and physically. However, they do have their limits. This storyline definitely pushes them beyond their limits. With all that happens, things start to take a toll on Fallon. It's in those brief moments I really admired how Fallon reached within herself to really find the strength to do all she needs to in order to be successful in saving her sister, and those fighting along side her. Her will power never diminished, especially since she has her sister to save. There's a lot more at stake that just saving her sister this time. She's the leader of a rebellion. Like all rebellions, not everyone survives. 

Like The Valiant, this is a story fueled by strong women. Not just in their strength, but in their ability to rally together, to support each other, to offer friendship and love. They are united in a sisterhood, made up for fighters from all walks of lives. Some are closer than others, but no matter what, they all have each other's backs. With this storyline being much more intense, I really liked seeing how they laid differences aside, sacrificed their own lives, and worked together in their rebellion. They fought side by side because they wanted to. They fought for themselves, as much as for each other. Their fight was for freedom over having the chance to own their own lives, and not someone else controlling it. 

I really enjoyed getting to know some of the characters more. This story wasn't just about Fallon and saving her sister. It was also about so many other characters, who's stories are intermixed with Fallon's. Elka was one of my favorites in this book. I also liked the snippets of romance that are spread out through out the story. There's Cai and Fallon, which I really liked, and Elka and Quint were a lot of fun too. There's also a few surprising with a few characters that previously I wasn't a fan of, but was surprised at the turn of events that lead them to helping Fallon. No spoilers, but these turn of events made sense with all that unfolds in this plot line.

This book definitely kept me hooked! There is a lot that happens, and I like that Livingston was able to add some humor, and lighthearted moments at just the right times. It kept the story entertaining, and not as dark as it definitely could have been. It was perfect placement. This story does go down a different path than The Valiant. There's still a lot of action scenes, rich Roman history, along with dangerous threats, a rebellion, and plenty of danger, and fighting. Like The Valiant, The Defiant is a well written, action packed, fast paced read fueled by GIRL POWER! It was definitely worth the wait for this book!

ABOUT THE VALIANT 

A richly-imagined, gripping historical fantasy for fans of Sarah J. Maas and Cinda Williams Chima, The Valiant recounts a seventeen-year-old's tumultuous journey from fierce Celtic princess to legendary female gladiator and darling of the Roman empire.
The youngest daughter of a proud Celtic king, Fallon has always lived in the shadow of her older sister Sorcha's legendary reputation as a warrior. But when Fallon was a young child, the armies of Julius Caesar invaded the island of Britain and her beloved older sister was killed in battle.

On the eve of her seventeenth birthday, Fallon is excited to follow in her sister's footsteps and earn her rightful place in her father's royal war band. She never gets the chance.

Instead Fallon is captured by a band of ruthless brigands who sell her to an exclusive training school for female gladiators--and its most influential patron is none other than Julius Caesar himself. In a cruel twist of fate, Fallon's worst enemy, the man who destroyed her family, might be her only hope of survival.

Now, Fallon must overcome vicious rivalries, chilling threats, and the dangerous attention of Caesar himself to survive the deadly fights that take place both in and out of the arena - and claim her place in history among the Valiant.


Read my 5 star review for The Valiant, here
ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Lesley Livingston is an award-winning author of teen fiction, best known for her Wondrous Strange trilogy. She holds a master's degree in English from the University of Toronto and was a principal performer in a Shakespearean theater company, specializing in performances for teen audiences, for more than a decade. 

THE DEFIANT BLOG TOUR SCHEDULE

January 22 – Seeing Double in Neverland – Review
January 23 – ButtermyBooks – Review or Playlist
January 24 – The Fiction Fare – Review
January 25 – A Page with a View – Review
January 26 – Mundie Moms Book Reviews – Review

January 29 – Arctic Books – Playlist
January 30 – Oh the Book Feels – Review
January 31 – Effortlessly Reading – Review
February 2 – Alexa Loves Books – Gladiator Gift Guide
February 3 – I Fangirl About Books - Review

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Love, Simon Preview Screening Spoiler Free Review


Everyone deserves a great love story, but for 17-year-old Simon Spier, it's a little more complicated. He hasn't told his family or friends that he's gay, and he doesn't know the identity of the anonymous classmate that he's fallen for online. Resolving both issues proves hilarious, terrifying and life-changing.

On Wednesday Night 1/24 I was lucky enough to see a preview screening of the movie Love, Simon in Melbourne thanks to Penguin Teen Australia. They showed the special screening as part of their showcase where they also previewed YA releases for this year.

Love, Simon is based on the book “Simon Vs The Homosapien Agenda” by Becky Albertalli. The movie follows the overall story of the book with a few small changes as often movies make. But I didn’t feel like we missed out terribly on anything from the book. I was ok with the small changes and understood why some things were left out.

One thing it doesn’t change from the book, if not steps up a notch, is the humour! This movie is classed as a comedy and that it is. You will laugh out loud so many times you may want to watch your timing for sipping drinks. The funniest characters are two teachers who come out with so many great one liners you will never look at teachers the same again. We also get lots of humour from Simon and his friends, I’m just going to say “College dream sequence” and not say too much more!

But ultimately it’s a coming out story of a gay teenage boy. One we don’t see very often and I’m hoping to see it more. It is a great fun representation for all gay teenagers really, those who are grappling with when and how to come out. It also touches on the bullying aspect too, which is handled well, and shows that most people will stand up for you if it gets called out. I was proud to take my 15yr old daughter to see it and I’m hoping all her friends get to see it to, knowing it might strike a cord with some of them.

Love, Simon is released in cinemas on March 16 USA and March 29 Australia. Make sure you check it out and read the book before then as it’s such a lovely read.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

REIGN THE EARTH by A.C. Gaughen / Book Review #ReignTheEarth #Elementae


By: A.C. Gaughen
Published by: Bloomsbury
To Be Released on: January 30th, 2018
SeriesThe Elementae #1
Pre-Order fromBloomsbury | Amazon | B&N
Add it to Goodreads

Rating: 5 Stars
A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for my honest review

Shalia is a proud daughter of the desert, but after years of devastating war with the adjoining kingdom, her people are desperate for peace. Willing to trade her freedom to ensure the safety of her family, Shalia becomes Queen of the Bonelands.

But she soon learns that her husband, Calix, is motivated only by his desire to exterminate the Elementae—mystical people who can control earth, wind, air, and fire. Even more unsettling are Shalia’s feelings for her husband’s brother, which unleash a power over the earth she never knew she possessed—a power that could get her killed. As rumors of a rebellion against Calix spread, Shalia must choose between the last chance for peace and her own future as an Elementae.

This intense, richly drawn high-fantasy by the author of Scarlet will hold readers spellbound.


A fantastic fantasy! This is one spellbinding read. This book has it all; desert magic, elemental power, romance, danger, one incredibly tough heroine, and a shocking twist I never saw coming. This book was worth it's long awaited release. I'm long been a fan of Gaughen's, but I think this may be her best book yet! That's saying something, because her other books are fantastic. 

I'm still trying to process this story. Gaughen wrote such a mesmerizing, complex story. Her writing is richly detailed, and easily springs to life on the pages of this book. With it's rich history, memorizing elemental magic, lore, mixed with incredibly world building and characters I absolutely loved getting to know, it wasn't hard to not get sucked into this story. There's definitely a few twists, and a shocking reveal I didn't even except. I loved it. Not to mention there's a villain who is so easy to despise. 

The characters are one of my favorite elements of this book. All of them are incredibly detailed and in-depth characters I emotionally felt connected to (except the villain, Calix). I loved Shalia. She is a character my heart broke for, as well as easily cheered on. She is an incredible heroine, and a character I greatly admired. She's fierce, loyal, independent, smart, as well as broken. She's a leader as well as a survivor. I admired her strength and her hope. Even in the situations when all seems lost, she doesn't give up. 

To match Shalia's resilience, are some characters I absolutely loved getting to know. Including her friends, her brothers, and Galen. I loved that every character had a purpose in this story. There are some characters who are so easy to love, and some that are so easy to despise. Galen was such a fantastic surprise! He's light to his brother, Calix's darkness. 

Talk about a villain who doesn't spare anyone when it comes to his abuse, and his evil reign. Shalia endures much, as does the people she comes to love when it comes to Calix. He is a cringe worthy villain who is probably one of the best written villains I've read in a long time. I do want to mention there are darker themes in this book, including that of emotional abuse. Calix is a ruthless villain, and no-one is spared when it comes to his abuse of power, and evil ways, including Shalia, his siblings, and those he rules over.

This story really does have it all. I felt like the elemental part of this story as well as the setting were such important parts of the story. Instead of just telling the reader about them, Gaughen makes you feel as though you're in the story, witnessing the power of those that wield the elemental power. The setting is so vivid. It's beauty, and hardness all rolled up into one. 

Just, WOW! Gaughen has really out done herself with this richly layered story. This book was everything I could have hoped this story would be and so much more. My word, I'm tempted to re-read it again after writing my review. I can not wait to read the next book in this series.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

OUT TODAY! 1/23/18 New YA Releases


Today is an epic release day! Well I should say I think it's an epic release day, because I've already read two of the books out today and loved them, and I look forward to reading the other two. Check out today's newest YA releases:


There are some fantastic releases out today! Which new releases are you looking forward to reading? 

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