Best New Fantasy: A Curse So Dark and Lonely 

Author: Brigid Kemmerer

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult

Goodreads Summary:

In a lush, contemporary fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast, Brigid Kemmerer gives readers another compulsively readable romance perfect for fans of Marissa Meyer.

Fall in love, break the curse. 

It once seemed so easy to Prince Rhen, the heir to Emberfall. Cursed by a powerful enchantress to repeat the autumn of his eighteenth year over and over, he knew he could be saved if a girl fell for him. But that was before he learned that at the end of each autumn, he would turn into a vicious beast hell-bent on destruction. That was before he destroyed his castle, his family, and every last shred of hope.

Nothing has ever been easy for Harper Lacy. With her father long gone, her mother dying, and her brother barely holding their family together while constantly underestimating her because of her cerebral palsy, she learned to be tough enough to survive. But when she tries to save someone else on the streets of Washington, DC, she’s instead somehow sucked into Rhen’s cursed world.

Break the curse, save the kingdom. 

A prince? A monster? A curse? Harper doesn’t know where she is or what to believe. But as she spends time with Rhen in this enchanted land, she begins to understand what’s at stake. And as Rhen realizes Harper is not just another girl to charm, his hope comes flooding back. But powerful forces are standing against Emberfall . . . and it will take more than a broken curse to save Harper, Rhen, and his people from utter ruin.

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Spoiler free Summary:

Oh. My. Gosh.

This was such an amazing book! It is a retelling of beauty and the beast and the author did an amazing job. It reminded me of A Court of Thorns and Roses, I would say if A Court of Thorns and Roses and A Court of Mist and Fury were one book, this is it!

Harper gets thrown into this amazing alternate universe and is thrust into the throws of this dying kingdom called Emberfall. Harper is such an amazing and dynamic character. She is the badass female that I love seeing in these types of YA novels. She wont take no for an answer and does whatever she wants. One thing I love that the author did is that she gave the main character a disability, but in no way does she let that effect her life. She has cerebral palsy, which in the case of this character gives her a noticeable limp. It is something that, in my reading experience, has not been done in a YA fantasy novel.

The world building also blew my mind. Brigid Kemmerer is spectacular at describing this universe so well that you can picture everything in your head. I need to see a map of this fantasy land immediately because of how much I have fallen in love with it.

This book is one of those books that has you turning each page until you have read the last word. Then once you finish, you just want more. It kept me on the edge of my seat the whole way, and the ending blew my mind!

If you have not ordered this book, you need to go do so immediately!

**This was an advanced readers copy I received to review**

From your local bibliophile, until next time!

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Reign the Earth

Reign the Earth

Author: A.C. Gaughen

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult

Goodreads Summary:

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.

Spoiler free Summary:

The first thing that comes to mind for me is: Avatar: The Last Airbender. I was obsessed with this show as a kid and this book brought back all of the awesome memories because if the elemental powers.

A.C. Gaughen has created an amazing world for you to fall in love with. I love how creative her imagination was when it came to devising these wonderful parts of the world that the characters live in. This novel was such an out of the box idea that translated into something unlike anything I have ever read before. This book reminded me if The Wrath & The Dawn and Avatar: The Last Airbender had a book baby together.

This author keeps you on your toes the whole time you are reading. I loved that she had multiple plot twists that totally blind sided me. You will not want to put this down until you have read the very last sentence.

The character development was outstanding. I felt like I could really get into the story since she made these characters so personable. Shalia had such a fascinating growth throughout this whole novel.

Reign the Earth will be one of those books that I will think about forever and definitely re-read in the future. I cannot wait to meet AC Gaugen at BookCon! I would highly recommend it to anyone interested in fantasy, faeries, action, or a novel that you will not be willing to put down.

Side-note: I don’t typically read the acknowledgments at the end of a book, but for some reason did this time. If you read this book you need to read it also, this authors story is amazing, She persevered through so many hardships to get this wonderful book out to us, her readers.

From your local bibliophile, until next time!

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The Soul’s Expression

The Soul’s Expression

Author: Amy Alston

Genre: Historical, Romance

Goodreads Summary:

Katherine did what was expected of her, she married the man her parents deemed suitable. However, she could not do all that was expected of her. 

After less than a year of marriage, Katherine is coerced to a doctor’s office, where she must admit the humiliating fact that she hasn’t shared her husband’s bed. She knows what the diagnosis will be and the degrading treatments women with hysteria are subject to. But with a judgemental mother-in-law in tow and an impatient husband at home, the choice is not hers. 

Despite herself, she comes to trust the unusual and unconventional man treating her. And, when her increasingly volatile husband threatens to force from her that which she’s unable to give, she feels she must acquiesce to all of her doctor’s recommendations.

Swept up in a surge of self-discovery and sexual awakening, Katherine faces a new reason to be terrified. One she could never have imagined.

Due to adult themes and language, this novel is intended for readers 18 and over.

 

the souls expression

Spoiler free Summary:

I’m typically someone who sticks to anything and everything paranormal. I came across this book and was very intrigued. This is a topic that was covered not only in my history classes in college, but also my women’s writer class (I was an English Lit major). Hysteria is something that many women were accused of and sentenced to places such as the Mary Magdalene Hospital. Women could go there for things such as being a prostitute, pregnancy out of wedlock, and any man wanting to commit a woman.

The book started off with Katherine, the main character, who is forced to seek a doctors attention for the problem of not being able to bed her husband after 8 months of marriage. She is sure that the doctor is going to accuse her of hysteria and give her surgery or commit her. Then when she gets to know Dr. Hershaw and she discovers that he is truly wanting to help her. Bring in a mistress, drugs, and a budding romance and you have the perfect mixture for a historical romance that you cannot put down until the end.

I really enjoyed the ideas and concepts that the author put into the making of this book. This is a part of history that I had some background knowledge on and this really built off of that. It was very evident that the author did a lot of research into the making of this novel. I would definitely suggest this book to anyone looking for an intriguing historical romance!

From your local bibliophile, until next time!

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So I Married a Sorcerer (Embraced #2) Spoiler Free Review

So I Married a Sorcerer (Embraced #2)

Author: Kerrelyn Sparks

Genre: Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance

Goodreads Summary:

Growing up on the Isle of Moon, Brigitta knows nothing of her past, except that she is Embraced: born with powers that forced her into hiding. Everything changes when she learns she’s a princess, hidden away from her villainous half-brother who now rules the kingdom. But he knows about Brigitta, and he’ll do anything to get her back. Unless a certain roguish pirate has anything to say about it…

Rupert is both an infamous pirate and a sorcerer with the power to harness the wind. He’s been waiting nineteen years for revenge—and he needs Brigitta to get it. What begins as a kidnapping of the fiery beauty turns into a fierce attraction. But can he win the captive princess’s heart?

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Spoiler free Summary:

I discovered my love for Kerrelyn Sparks in November and have blown through all of her books. This is the second book in the Embraced series. I put off reading this book for awhile because I knew once I finished it that I would have to wait until March for the next book to come out. I am always looking for romance paranormal books. This book is the perfect mixture of historical romance and paranormal romance.

The book started off with Brigitta, the main character, on her way to see her adopted sister, Luciana, who was going to give birth any day. While on the boat the navy, to a bordering country, shows up to take her. The nuns with her suddenly inform her that she is the missing princess to this country who is believed to be dead. Then the infamous pirate Rupert shows up and blows away the navy ships. Birgitta decides to sacrifice herself to save her sisters and willingly goes with the pirates. Birgitta knows there are secrets aboard this ship and is intent on uncovering them.

This story was very thrilling and different from the usual Kerrelyn Sparks books I am used to, it was very refreshing and exciting! I really enjoyed the creativeness and thrill that she put into the making of this book. There were definitely some plot twists that I did not see coming and I loved it! Once again her brilliant writing skills shine through in this book.

I would definitely suggest this to anyone looking for a new paranormal romance to read. I am excited to continue the series in March!

From your local bibliophile, until next time!

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youtube video review of first book: https://youtu.be/zwvwf_Ame7Y