31.8.16

#BlogTour: BEYOND YOUR TOUCH by Pat Esden // #Review + #GIVEAWAY

http://xpressobooktours.com/2016/06/08/tour-sign-up-beyond-your-touch-by-pat-esden/
Hello and welcome to my blog tour stop for

BEYOND YOUR TOUCH by Pat Esden!

Today I have a double review for you of the first novel, A HOLD ON ME and BEYOND YOUR TOUCH! As well, there is a giveaway for a $25 Amazon gift card below so make sure you keep scrolling. But first, let's learn more about the book!

BEYOND YOUR TOUCH

Author: Pat Esden
Series: The Dark Heart #2
Source: eARC via Publisher
Publisher: Kensington
Publication Date: August 30, 2016
Rating: 3.5/5 stars

Summary:
She wants more than he can promise.
His desires could lead to betrayal.
But without each other, neither can survive the dangers ahead.


Annie Freemont knows this isn’t the right time to get involved with a man like Chase. After years of distrust, she’s finally drawing close to her estranged family, and he’s an employee on their estate in Maine. Though she never intended to stay on the estate for long, her father’s illness and the mysteries surrounding her family made leaving impossible. And now with the newfound hope of rescuing her long-missing mother, Annie’s determined to be involved with the family’s plans one way or another.

If only she could keep her mind off Chase and focus on the impending rescue. But there’s something about the enigmatic Chase that she can’t resist. And she’s not the only woman. Annie fears a seductive stranger who is key to safely freeing her mother is also obsessed with him. As plans transform into action and time for a treacherous journey into a strange world draws near, every move Annie makes will test the one bond she’s trusted with her secrets, her desires—and her heart.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28109696-beyond-your-touch?ac=1&from_search=true
Purchase:

Start this series with...

A HOLD ON ME

Author: Pat Esden
Series: The Dark Heart #1
Source: eARC via Publisher
Publisher: Kensington
Publication Date: February 23, 2016
Rating: 3.5/5 stars

Summary:
She never wanted to return.
He wants nothing more than for her to leave.
But the fire between them is as strong as the past that haunts them.


Annie Freemont grew up on the road, immersed in the romance of rare things, cultivating an eye for artifacts and a spirit for bargaining. It's a freewheeling life she loves and plans to continue--until her dad is diagnosed with dementia. His illness forces them to return to Moonhill, their ancestral home on the coast of Maine--and to the family they left behind fifteen years ago, after Annie's mother died in a suspicious accident.

Once at Moonhill, Annie is shocked when her aunt separates her from her father. The next time Annie sees him, he's a bizarre, violent shadow of his former self. Confused, she turns to an unlikely ally for support--Chase, the dangerously seductive young groundskeeper. With his dark good looks and powerful presence, Chase has an air of mystery that Annie is irresistibly drawn to. But she also senses that behind his penetrating eyes are secrets she can't even begin to imagine. Secrets that hold the key to the past, to Annie's own longings--and to all of their futures. Now, to unlock them, she'll have to face her greatest fears and embrace her legacy…  

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25810168-a-hold-on-me
Purchase:
Disclaimer: I received an eARC of both of these novels in exchange for an honest review.


A Hold on Me

I really liked this one. I thought it was a solid foray into NA urban fantasy and I felt inspired by the characters. I had a couple issues with it, but I'm very excited for the next novel (I say as it loads onto my Kindle). I think if you are a fan of YA urban fantasy, this is a good series to get you into NA urban fantasy if you are looking to up the ages and situations of the characters.

30.8.16

#BlogTour: FOR THE CLAN by Archer Kay Leah

Hello and welcome to my blog tour stop for

FOR THE CLAN by Archer Kay Leah!

Today I have an excerpt for you plus a giveaway so keep scrolling! But first, let's learn more about the book.


FOR THE CLAN

Author: Archer Kay Leah
Source: ebook via Publisher
Publisher: Less Than Three Press
Publication Date: May 25, 2016

Summary:
Canada, 2165 AD. The Water Wars and a decimated economy have taken their toll. Anyone who doesn't live in a military-patrolled metropolis lives in a clan. But being in a clan doesn't mean safety.

And for a Ven like Roan Lee, it doesn't matter where he lives. Safety is a luxury. So is freedom.

Roan is desperate to escape the governtary's exploitation and torture. He is nothing to them but 54σK1, an artifact born from a genetic mishap. When the chance to escape arises, he makes a run for it—and encounters the lover from his past, twisting his future into a second chance he never expected.

As leaders of Clan Teach, Jace Ama and his wife, Cayra Diega, have enough difficulty keeping their people safe. When Roan is thrown to their feet as a prisoner, their marriage becomes an additional challenge. Jace still loves Roan, but where does that leave Cayra?  

Purchase:

Cayra focused on the trees in the distance, hoping no one bothered them. She may not have another chance. "I don't know if he's told you, but we talked. Came to an understanding. I'd like you and me to do the same. We don't have to be strangers. We don't have to be at odds. We can talk about him like grown ups. No drama." Cayra watched him pull on the needle, closing the gaping holes in the canvas. "I know he still loves you. I'm curious to know if you feel the same."

His silence wasn't an answer, but his hard yank on the cord was.

"So you do," she murmured. "He says you've already talked about it. Decided to leave things be. Says he won't screw with our marriage just because you've come back. That can't be easy. I don't know what you went through, but I can imagine. Must've been excruciating. I wouldn't have been able to stand it, losing him. I'd have gone mad. Don't know how you managed to get through it."  

Roan's jaws flexed. 

29.8.16

#Discussion: Why I Skim Sex Scenes In NA #NAAugust


Look, I am very vocal about how NA is not my favourite “genre” and until they really expand out of contemporary and into SciFi, Historical Fiction, and Fantasy, I’m probably not going to continue reading it. But what everyone (well, Dani), loves about NA is the on screen depiction of sex rather than the Fade to Black (FTB) that you typically see in YA novels. I say “typically” because there are some YA novels that have sex scenes in them that do not FTB. But I find myself skimming the sex scenes in NA rather than reading (and enjoying) them.

28.8.16

August 2016 Monthly Wrap-Up!

Another month has come and gone so let's see what my reading month has been like! Below you will see what my stats were, my favourite releases, and my anticipated TBR for next month!

Reading Stats:

Total Books Read: 20 (Dang move)
Average Rating: 3.30
Books Purchased: 27
Books Received For Review: 19 (Week 1, Week 2, Week 3, Week 4)
Books Pre-ordered for Next Month: 3 (CROOKED KINGDOM, AS I DESCENDED, A SHADOW BRIGHT AND BURNING)
Books Reviewed: 25

VICARIOUS

Author: Paula Stokes
Series: Vicarious #1
Source: Purchased from Chapters
Publisher: Tor
Publication Date: August 16, 2016

Summary:
Winter Kim and her sister, Rose, have always been inseparable. Together, the two of them survived growing up in a Korean orphanage and being trafficked into the United States.

Now they work as digital stunt girls for Rose’s ex-boyfriend, Gideon, engaging in dangerous and enticing activities while recording their neural impulses for his Vicarious Sensory Experiences, or ViSEs. Whether it’s bungee jumping, shark diving, or grinding up against celebrities at the city’s hottest dance clubs, Gideon can make it happen for you, for a price.

When Rose disappears and a ViSE recording of her murder is delivered to Gideon, Winter won’t rest until she finds her sister’s killer. But when the clues she uncovers conflict with the neural recordings her sister made, Winter isn’t sure what to believe. To find out what happened to Rose, she’ll have to untangle what’s real from what only seems real, risking her life in the process.



Purchase:

27.8.16

Event Recap: #FrenzyPresents + #GIVEAWAY!

On Sunday, August 21, 2016, I journeyed into Toronto to the HarperCollins Canada offices for #FrenzyPresents! This was a two hour long presentation about HarperCollins Fall 2016 and Winter 2017 titles plus two awesome authors came in to tell us about their books and sign copies for us. I will tell you a bit of what we learned about each book and which ones I'm REALLY excited for. At the bottom, you can win a RED QUEEN prize pack including a pre-order of KING'S CAGE!


Girl Mans Up

Author: M-E Girard
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date: September 6, 2016

Summary:
All Pen wants is to be the kind of girl she’s always been. So why does everyone have a problem with it? They think the way she looks and acts means she’s trying to be a boy—that she should quit trying to be something she’s not. If she dresses like a girl, and does what her folks want, it will show respect. If she takes orders and does what her friend Colby wants, it will show her loyalty. But respect and loyalty, Pen discovers, are empty words. Old-world parents, disintegrating friendships, and strong feelings for other girls drive Pen to see the truth--that in order to be who she truly wants to be, she’ll have to man up.
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28217802-girl-mans-up?ac=1&from_search=true
Purchase:

Why I'm Excited For It

When M-E Girard talked to us about her novel, it made me very excited for the novel! I was so interested to hear that this is the type of story that she would have wanted to read as a teen. I think when authors write stories they needed as teens, they always translate well. Also, Shelly loved it so that always makes me more excited to read a book.

As I Descended

Author: Robin Talley
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date: September 6, 2016

Summary:
Maria Lyon and Lily Boiten are their school’s ultimate power couple—even if no one knows it but them.

Only one thing stands between them and their perfect future: campus superstar Delilah Dufrey.

Golden child Delilah is a legend at the exclusive Acheron Academy, and the presumptive winner of the distinguished Cawdor Kingsley Prize. She runs the school, and if she chose, she could blow up Maria and Lily’s whole world with a pointed look, or a carefully placed word.

But what Delilah doesn’t know is that Lily and Maria are willing to do anything—absolutely anything—to make their dreams come true. And the first step is unseating Delilah for the Kingsley Prize. The full scholarship, awarded to Maria, will lock in her attendance at Stanford―and four more years in a shared dorm room with Lily.

Maria and Lily will stop at nothing to ensure their victory—including harnessing the dark power long rumored to be present on the former plantation that houses their school.

But when feuds turn to fatalities, and madness begins to blur the distinction between what’s real and what is imagined, the girls must decide where they draw the line.

From acclaimed author Robin Talley comes a Shakespeare-inspired story of revenge and redemption, where fair is foul, and foul is fair.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28218948-as-i-descended?ac=1&from_search=true
Purchase:

Why I'm Excited For It

QUEER. MACBETH. RETELLING. Macbeth is my favourite Shakespeare novel and I am SO hyped for this one. It's one of the only September 6th novels I have pre-ordered. If you don't know, there is magic, mayhem, and ghosts in this one. Nothing is as it seems and with Robin Talley, this one promises greatness.

26.8.16

#NAAugust: #GuestPost by Lyssa Chiavari

Over on Books Are My Fandom, we are hosting a full month all about the New Adult genre! There you can read posts from bloggers and authors about what New Adult means to them. On Dani Reviews Things, Dani will be reviewing New Adult books all month! And on here, Books and Ladders, every Monday and Friday, I will be reviewing New Adult books and talking about ones I *have* reviewed and really enjoyed!


FOURTH WORLD

Author: Lyssa Chiavari
Series: The Iamos Trilogy #1
Publisher: Lyssa Chiavari
Publication Date: December 29, 2015

Summary
IAMOS, S.C.D. 8378
Nadin's planet is dying. As its atmosphere drains away, her people are forced to live huddled in domed cities for protection. With only enough resources to support the population for one more year, time is running out. Nadin thinks she's found a way to save Iamos, but it will mean defying the planet's rulers, the geroi—and betraying the geroi could cost her everything.

When a strange boy from another world appears out of nowhere outside the citidome's glass walls, Nadin knows for sure that her plan will work. But to build the device that can save her people, Nadin must first find the legendary city of Elytherios. And to do that, she'll need the help of the mysterious alien boy named Isaak.

MARS, 2073 C.E.
All Isaak wanted was to get through his senior year at the Academy in one piece. Everything would have been fine if he hadn't found that ancient coin among his missing father's possessions. The coin seems to have a strange connection not only to Isaak's family, but to Mars' ancient past.

But how is that possible, on a planet that was supposed to be dead until just forty years ago?

Now Isaak's got agents of the Earth's government on his tail and a deranged factory worker stalking his every move. Everyone is desperate to get their hands on something called the Key. And the only way to escape is to unlock an even bigger secret, one that could change his life—and the fate of Mars—forever.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25555364-fourth-world
Purchase:

What makes a book New Adult? 

We’ve seen some great discussions about the genre this month during #NAAugust, and a lot of it has seemed to boil down to sex. There’s been debate about how much sex NA books should include, whether sex should be a prerequisite for classifying a book as NA, and what the line should be between NA and YA on one side, erotica on the other. Many of the arguments I’ve seen from both sides of the debate have pointed out that sex is important in NA because sex is so integral to the lives of people that age range (18- 30).

25.8.16

ARC #Review: THE HAWKWEED PROPHECY by Irena Brignull

THE HAWKWEED PROPHECY

Author: Irena Brignull
Source: ARC via Publisher
Publisher: Weinstein Books
Publication Date: September 6, 2016
Rating: 2.5/5 stars

Summary:
Poppy Hooper and Ember Hawkweed couldn’t lead more different lives. Poppy is a troubled teen: moving from school to school, causing chaos wherever she goes, never making friends or lasting connections. Ember is a young witch, struggling to find a place within her coven and prove her worth. Both are outsiders: feeling like they don’t belong and seeking escape.

Poppy and Ember soon become friends, and secretly share knowledge of their two worlds. Little do they know that destiny has brought them together: an ancient prophecy, and a life-changing betrayal. Growing closer, they begin to understand why they’ve never belonged and the reason they are now forever connected to each other.

Switched at birth by the scheming witch Raven Hawkweed, Poppy and Ember must come to terms with their true identities and fight for their own place in the world. Enter Leo, a homeless boy with a painful past who – befriending them both – tests their love and loyalty. Can Poppy and Ember’s friendship survive? And can it withstand the dark forces that are gathering?

Purchase:
This one was alright. I didn't really like it or dislike it and honestly I can't think of anything so special about it that I need to mention it in this review. The magic was super cool, the characters were boring, and I thought the plot was overdone which made it fizzle out at the end because I couldn't stay interested. I would suggest picking this one up at the library rather than purchasing it for yourself.

24.8.16

ARC #Review: LABYRINTH LOST by Zoraida Córdova

LABYRINTH LOST

Author:  Zoraida Córdova
Series: Brooklyn Brujas #1
Source: eARC via Publisher
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Publication Date: September 6, 2016
Rating: 2/5 stars

Summary:
Nothing says Happy Birthday like summoning the spirits of your dead relatives.

Alex is a bruja, the most powerful witch in a generation...and she hates magic. At her Deathday celebration, Alex performs a spell to rid herself of her power. But it backfires. Her whole family vanishes into thin air, leaving her alone with Nova, a brujo boy she can't trust. A boy whose intentions are as dark as the strange marks on his skin.

The only way to get her family back is to travel with Nova to Los Lagos, a land in-between, as dark as Limbo and as strange as Wonderland...

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27969081-labyrinth-lost?ac=1&from_search=true
Purchase:
This one started off so strong -- for the first 60% I was LOVING it. It was easily on it's way to being a 4* novel but then at 60% it has a Tea Party scene which is very reminiscent of Alice in Wonderland and while that's fine, it caused me to think about them rather than stay in the story of LABYRINTH LOST and from there I kind of mentally checked out of the novel. As well, the ending was very underwhelming and I found I couldn't really connect with the characters.

23.8.16

DNF Round Up!

I have been very open and vocal about DNF-ing books, but I don't typically post my DNF reviews on my blog. I find I don't have a need to fill my blog with them since I read so much. But I thought I would showcase my last(ish) 10 DNF reviews for you so you can see what I've been reading and not finishing and to get a bit further understanding of why I DNF books. There are a variety of reasons below but most of my reasons include that I was bored while reading these.

The Mountain of Kept Memory

Author: Rachel Neumeier
Source: ARC via Publisher
Publisher: Saga Press
Publication Date: November 8, 2016
Where I Stopped Reading: 23%


Why?
This SCREAMS everything that I would love from the description but oh man is that first bit hard to get through. Not only did the story slowly trudge along after an initial burst but the writing was just not good. Paragraphs would be dedicated to saying the same thing over and over in slightly different ways. It was like when you know you need more words for your essay but have nothing else to say. I think maybe the writing was trying to be somewhat Purple Prose-y but it failed completely. I had such a hard time getting to this percentage to be honest so I just am not going to move forward.
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29088076-the-mountain-of-kept-memory

The Assassin’s Blade

Author: Sarah J. Maas
Series: Throne of Glass 0.1-0.5
Source: Purchased from Chapters
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children’s
Publication Date: March 3, 2015
Where I Stopped Reading: 12%

Why?
This is also the death of me reading the Throne of Glass series. I read both Throne of Glass & Crown of Midnight and while I didn't hate them, I definitely wasn't super intrigued by them to continue on with Heir of Fire. I feel like Throne of Glass was pretty cliche and there wasn't much that actually happened. And in Crown of Midnight I thought it got better but it just didn't quite pique my interest. So I put off Heir of Fire.

But I see more and more people starting this series/continuing this series and LOVING it and I keep thinking "what am I missing" so I thought the novellas in here would ease me back into the world. They are only 10 chapters ish each so it really shouldn't have taken me too long.

However, I didn't even make it through the first novella. I almost didn't make it past the first page. I really cannot stand Celaena, who thinks she is the specialist of special snowflakes, and the whole situation is just absurd. I *do* like that she is (supposedly) a badass who also likes to dress up, but she isn't really a badass. She just fakes it tbh. We hear so much about how badass she is, yet we never actually see her do anything. So ???

Anyway that's just my griping. Feel free to love this but I do not.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22529351-the-assassin-s-blade

22.8.16

#NAAugust: DAYBREAK RISING by Kiran Oliver

Over on Books Are My Fandom, we are hosting a full month all about the New Adult genre! There you can read posts from bloggers and authors about what New Adult means to them. On Dani Reviews Things, Dani will be reviewing New Adult books all month! And on here, Books and Ladders, every Monday and Friday, I will be reviewing New Adult books and talking about ones I *have* reviewed and really enjoyed!

DAYBREAK RISING

Author: Kiran Oliver
Series: Daybreak Rising #1
Source: eARC via the Author
Publisher: Torquere Press
Publication Date: September 21, 2016
Rating: 3/5 stars

Summary:
22-year-old Celosia Brennan spent sixteen years being raised as the heroine her nation needed. A dual-touched Elementalist with both the power to conjure fire and see glimpses of her future, Celosia was the best hope at overthrowing the oppressive Council in a mission called Daybreak, an attempt to secure justice for the massacre of her people and so many others. There’s just one problem: she couldn’t. Celosia broke down after realizing the enormity of her task, and is struggling to make things right while the blood of her fellows stains her hands.

Now branded a failure, Celosia desperately volunteers for the next mission: taking down the corrupt Council with a team of her fellow elementally-gifted mages. Leading the Ember Operative gives Celosia her last hope at redemption. They seek to overthrow the Council once and for all, this time bringing the fight to Valeria, the largest city under the Council’s iron grip. But Celosia’s new teammates don’t trust her—all except for a powerful ice Elementalist named Ianthe who believes in second chances.

With Council spies, uncontrolled magic, and the distraction of unexpected love, Celosia will have to win the trust of her teammates and push her abilities to the breaking point to complete the Ember Operative. Except if she falters this time, there won’t be any Elementalists left to stop the Council from taking over not only her country, but their entire world.

Disclaimer: I received an early ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

I think this one was pretty good but I had some difficulty following the story line 100% of the time. I think that the plot could have used a little more polishing because there are things I'm a little confused about that I should have a pretty firm grasp on after finishing the whole novel. The magic system was really intricate, well thought out, and well explained. However, the novel didn't give me enough to understand why there was an uprising, what the uprising was supposed to be doing, etc. etc. which was kind of disappointing in that sense.