First Lines Fridays – April 30, 2021

Welcome back to my blog! It’s that time of the week again where I bring you another First Lines Fridays post! To read my FLF from last week, click here.

First Lines Fridays is a weekly feature for book lovers hosted by Wandering Words. What if instead of judging a book by its cover, its author or its prestige, we judged it by its opening lines?

  • Pick a book off your shelf (it could be your current read or on your TBR) and open to the first page
  • Copy the first few lines, but don’t give anything else about the book away just yet – you need to hook the reader first
  • Finally… reveal the book!

Today’s First Lines

I glanced down at the text while the light was red.

Celeste: I’m not giving you a dime, Josh. Go screw yourself.

“Goddamn it,” I muttered, tossing the phone on the passenger seat. I knew she was gonna do this. leave me with my finger in the dam. Shit.

I’d left her the contents of the whole house, and all I asked for was her to pay half of the Lowe’s bill. Half of three thousand dollars’ worth of appliances I’d generously given her instead of selling them, despite the card and payments being in my name. And of course, I was somehow the asshole in all this for leaving the state for a new job three months after we’d broken up.

I had it on highest authority she was now hooking up with some guy named Brad.

I hoped Brad enjoyed my Samsun stainless gas range with the double oven.

Can you guess what book it is? I got it as a gift from the lovely Christine this past holiday season! Scroll down for the reveal!

The Friend Zone by Abby Jimenez

Kristen Petersen doesn’t do drama, will fight to the death for her friends, and has no room in her life for guys who just don’t get her. She’s also keeping a big secret: facing a medically necessary procedure that will make it impossible for her to have children.

Planning her best friend’s wedding is bittersweet for Kristen—especially when she meets the best man, Josh Copeland. He’s funny, sexy, never offended by her mile-wide streak of sarcasm, and always one chicken enchilada ahead of her hangry. Even her dog, Stuntman Mike, adores him. The only catch: Josh wants a big family someday. Kristen knows he’d be better off with someone else, but as their attraction grows, it’s harder and harder to keep him at arm’s length.

The Friend Zone will have you laughing one moment and grabbing for tissues the next as it tackles the realities of infertility and loss with wit, heart, and a lot of sass.


If you’re interested in The Friend Zone, you can purchase it on Amazon (affiliate link)!


Disclaimer: Most posts made on this blog will include affiliate links, identified by the phrase (affiliate link). As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This comes at no additional cost to you.

Guest Post: Down the “look-into” hole #2 (with Bookrob13)

Note from Jenny: This is round two of the “Down the Look-Into Hole” series with Bookrob13! If you missed round one, you can find it here. This series consists of guest-posts by my partner, Rob, so the entire post is him talking, not me!

Subtitle: Staring down the look-into hole and seeing through to the other side.

What is “Down the Look-Into Hole?” This series is kind of the same thing as a “Down the tbr hole”, except that a while back I noticed that there were books that I wanted to keep in mind without necessarily knowing that I definitely wanted to read them. This lead me to create a ‘look-into’ list on Goodreads. In this post, I’ll continue going through this list and decide whether to “TBR IT” or “FLUSH IT”. As is customary, I’ll go through the list starting with the book that’s been on the list the longest. Let’s get started!

Gingerbread by Helen Oyeyemi

Buy on Amazon (affiliate link)

I’ve heard that Helen Oyeyemi writes really interesting and strange books, and that’s a big selling point for me! It seems to be about a family that passes down some special gingerbread recipe. The teenage protagonist and her mother set out to find the mother’s childhood friend and this seems to lead them on an interesting journey. I don’t totally understand, but I suspect this premise isn’t the main point of the book. Here’s an excerpt from the first page:

A gingerbread addict once told Harriet that eating her gingerbread is like eating revenge. “It’s like noshing on the actual and anatomical heart of somebody who scarred your beloved and thought they’d got away with it,” the gingerbread addict said. “That heart, ground to ash and short through with darts of heat, salt, spice, and sulfurous syrup, as if honey was measured out, set ablaze, and trickled through the dough along with the liquefied spoon. You are phenomenal. You’ve ruined my life forever. Thank you.”

I’m intrigued! I’ll say yes, but if you think there’s another book by her that I should read instead, comment below!

Verdict: TBR IT!

The Glass Hotel by Emily St. John Mandel

Buy on Amazon (affiliate link)

I actually just last night started Emily St. John Mandel’s previous book, Station Eleven, as an audiobook and I’m really liking it! It’s a book about a massive pandemic that ends society as we know it (maybe a bit too topical) and I’m really liking the way the author sets the atmosphere, and also her way of gettin at human nature. I should probably wait ’til I’m done with Station Eleven before moving this book to my TBR, but you know what, I’m really liking Emily St. John Mandel’s writing, so let’s just do it!

Verdict: TBR IT!

The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton

Buy on Amazon (affiliate link)

I’m going to be honest, I have no idea why I put this book on here. I recognize the book–and it’s not that I don’t think it belongs–I just don’t remember what drew me to it. That probably means I should kick it off. Who knows, maybe someday I’ll see it in a bookstore, pick it up, read the beginning, and get hooked. In the meantime, I’ll leave this massive historical mystery novel aside.

Verdict: FLUSH IT!

My Sister, the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite

Buy on Amazon (affiliate link)

I’ve been thinking about reading this one for quite a while now, and I’ve heard a lot of good things about it. I’m frankly surprised I haven’t already put it on my TBR. This is an intriguing mystery/thriller set in Nigeria about a woman who cleans up after her younger sister (repeatedly!) kills her boyfriends in apparent self-defense. Looks like things get tense (as if they aren’t already!) when the younger sister starts dating the protagonist’s crush! I’m in!

Verdict: TBR IT!

Finna by Nino Cipri

Buy on Amazon (affiliate link)

This looks like the kind of wacky story that’s right up my alley. A customer at a furniture store gets sucked into another dimension and two workers need to track them down so that the company’s profits don’t suffer. The twist: the two workers were dating until a week ago! This novella is nominated for both the Nebula and the Hugo this year and I made lists of Hugo- and Nebula-nominated books I want to read before the ceremonies, but… I didn’t add this one! I think that means I’ll be passing on this for now.

Verdict: FLUSH IT!

Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer

Buy on Amazon (affiliate link)

As you may know, I tend to read a lot of science fiction. Annihilation is one of the most successful sci-fi books of the past decade (I think), so that explains why it’s on my radar. It looks like this is a story of an expedition entering some sort of post-apocalyptic zone where strange, unexplained things have happened. Add some intrigue amongst the members of the expedition and I’m sold!

Verdict: TBR IT!

Hall of Smoke by H.M. Long

Buy on Amazon (affiliate link)

This looks to be an epic fantasy novel inspired by viking mythology. A warrior priestess is out for revenge after raiders destroy her village. This looks pretty interesting, and I really like the cover, but I’ve been burned by fantasy novels lately. Plus, I can’t put everything on my TBR (right?), so I’ll set this one aside for now.

Verdict: FLUSH IT!

Going through this shelf, I’ve also realized that there’s a couple books that are actually on my physical TBR, so I get to TBR those too! We actually bought these two books yesterday! Here they are:

Jackpot by Nic Stone

Buy on Amazon (affiliate link)

I really liked Nic Stone’s Dear Martin. It was a powerful story with compelling writing that really gripped me. Jackpot seems to continue the motif of following a teen dealing with the struggles of societal injustices. Rico, a high-schooler who works as a cashier teams up with her super-rich classmate, Zan, to find a customer who bought a winning lotto ticket that hasn’t been claimed yet. It looks like their journey will give us all a lot to think about. I’ve been very excited to read another Nic Stone novel, so let’s do this!

Verdict: TBR IT!

Red Widow by Alma Katsu

Buy on Amazon (affiliate link)

I’ve been in the market for a spy thriller for a while now, and I’ve also been intrigued by Alma Katsu’s books. When I heard she was releasing a spy thriller and actually worked in intelligence for over 30 years, my curiosity was piqued! Once I picked up the book and read the first page, I was completely sold. This seems to be about two CIA agents involved in discovering an internal threat to the Russia Division. Lyndsey Duncan seems to be a senior agent and she’s in charge of the internal investigation. She becomes friends with Theresa Warner, the titular “Red Widow” and I guess intrigue ensues!

Verdict: TBR IT!

Well, that’s just 9 books out of 93 on my “look-into” list, but I still call that progress! Did I make any mistakes? Let me know!


Disclaimer: Most posts made on this blog will include affiliate links, identified by the phrase (affiliate link). As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This comes at no additional cost to you.

WWW Wednesday – April 28, 2021

It’s been so freaking long since I’ve done a WWW Wednesday and I’m kind of glad I skipped so many weeks because April has proved to be a terrible reading month. I couldn’t finish anything for weeks but I finally have some books to update you all on!

WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme created by Taking on a World of Words, where you answer the following three questions:

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What have you recently finished?
  • What are you reading next?

Currently Reading

Purchase on Amazon (affiliate link)

Among the Beasts & Briars by Ashley Poston

I’m super close to finishing this one so hopefully I can get it read today or tomorrow!

This is a buddy read with my crew from TWR as part of the “Hannah Didn’t Mean to Start a Book Club” Book Club. I’m enjoying this very much. It’s fast paced and is sure to keep you hooked as soon as you start!

Seeking Whom He May Devour by Fred Vargas

I’m buddy reading this with my partner, Rob, though he’s reading his copy in French.

What’s interesting is that we’ve compared our versions and the translator has changed some of the words that are actually in English in the French version to different English words which is really weird.

So far it’s unclear what is happening in the book, whether it’s supernatural or not. I’m curious to see what the plot has in store next!

Purchase on Amazon (affiliate link)

Recently Finished

In the past week I’ve finished:

Purchase on Amazon (affiliate link)

The Order of the Key by Justine Manzano

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I received a free copy from the author almost a year ago and this book got lost in the sea of my TBR.

Thankfully, I was participating in “Netgalley April” with a few of my bookish friends where we decided to spend April catching up on our backlog of requested reviews.

I’m so happy I got to this because it was a great YA fantasy novel. My review for it posted yesterday so you can read my full thoughts here.

Kate in Waiting by Becky Albertalli

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

I read this for a blog tour so you can read my full review here.

This book was absolutely lovely! I’ve read I think four of Becky Albertalli’s books and this was definitely my favorite of all of them. The plot centers around two best friends who have a crush on the same guy. And while I absolutely hate love triangles, this book handled it so well.

Purchase on Amazon (affiliate link)
Purchase on Amazon (affiliate link)

Janey Trelawney’s Year of Surprising Triumphs by Georgie Hill

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

This was a sweet story about a woman who is struggling to get by at work now that a new (and evil) manager has taken over. There’s also a nice side plot about her love life.

What I thought was the best thing about this story was the emphasis on working together to get something done. It was a very nice “found family” type of feeling.

This was for a blog tour, so you can read my full review here.

Poirot Investigates by Agatha Christie

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Poirot Investigates is a collection of 11 short stories about Hercule Poirot. I read the collection from a different book than the picture included here but because that book includes a bunch of other short stories, I decided to use this version when logging my Goodreads shelves.

Overall I thought the stories were very average. Since they’re so short, you can’t really connect with any of the characters so I didn’t feel any emotional reaction to the results of each crime.

Purchase on Amazon (affiliate link)

Reading Next

I’m not sure what I have coming up next but I do have a few books that Rob still wants me to read and some requested reviews from authors so I’ll include some of them below!

Do you see any books you’ve read or want to read? Let me know in the comments!


Disclaimer: Most posts made on this blog will include affiliate links, identified by the phrase (affiliate link). As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This comes at no additional cost to you.

Blog Tour Review: Janey Trelawney’s Year of Surprising Triumphs by Georgia Hill

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

A cute and entertaining contemporary novel with a generous dash of romance.

Foreword

Thank you so much to Rachel at https://www.rachelsrandomresources.com/ and Georgie Hill for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with a complimentary digital copy and blog tour media kit!

About the Author

Georgia Hill writes warm-hearted and up-lifting contemporary and timeslip romances about love, the power and joy in being an eccentric oldie and finding yourself and your community. There’s always a dog. It’s usually a naughty spaniel of which, unfortunately, she has had much experience. Her books are firmly rooted in small seaside towns similar to the one she lives in and she loves history especially when it insists on rearing up and battering at the present.

As a child she had an invisible friend called Gonky who lived on the third stair from the bottom. As an adult her invisible friends inhabit her head and refuse to leave until she commits them to paper. Readers of her books can escape into a warm bath of words and, no matter what challenges her characters face they will, ultimately, have a happy ending.

Review

Book CWs: For a list of content/trigger warnings, tropes, and representation for this book, check out its page on BookTriggerWarnings.com.

Premise

Janey’s life becomes more disaster movie than romcom when the ruthless Becca steams in to manage Cheney House. Her job as head gardener in peril and her self-confidence in tatters, Janey must fight back. Finding an ally in Will, who’s more Clark Kent than Superman, it’s up to them to save the day while owner Clare is away having her Shirley Valentine moment. It doesn’t help that everyone is in love with the wrong people!

Why can’t people love the one who loves them back?

Will Cheney House survive – and will Janey ever get her When Harry Met Sally happy ending?

Find out in this warm-hearted romance from the author of the best-selling Millie Vanilla’s Cupcake Café, full of Gregory Peck look-a-likes, snowdrops, cake, and a cocker spaniel called Camilla.

Review (No Spoilers)

Welcome to another installment of “Jenny didn’t remember signing up for this tour despite totally signing up for it!”. Someday I’m going to learn how to write things down right away rather than lying to myself about how I’ll remember to write it down later.

Today I’m giving you my review for the rom-com Janey Trelawney’s Year of Surprising Triumphs. While it’s marketed as a rom-com, I’d say that it’s more of contemporary women’s fiction with a good dash of romance. I felt like the plot focused more on Janey’s struggles on how to accept herself and succeed in life rather than who she should/would end up with.

I thought the pacing of this book was very nice. I enjoyed reading the different ways that Janey and her coworkers/customers attempted to outmaneuver the new manager, Becca, and how they continued to care and protect each other. The extent to which Becca was evil, however, made me more and more annoyed whenever there was a chapter about Clare, the establishment’s owner. I wasn’t interested in reading about her Italian getaway when I couldn’t believe she left her business in the hands of someone she barely knew! I kept yelling at her to go home and fix things!

I would have to say that my favorite thing about this book was Janey’s dedication to remaining true to herself. Despite several people telling her that she needed to change in order to be “more professional” or “attract men”, she held firm on the idea that she shouldn’t have to change unnecessary aspects about herself in order to make herself more palatable. While she did get a minor makeover, the Janey at the end of the book is still very much the same wonderful Janey from the beginning. Her taste in men however…that’s a different matter 😂.

Overall, Janey Trelawney’s Year of Surprising Triumphs is a sweet story about friendship, love, and perseverance. There is a strong theme of “we can do this if we do it together”, which is something I think a lot of people need to hear right now.

If you’d like to purchase a copy of Janey Trelawney’s Year of Surprising Triumphs you can find it on Amazon US (affiliate link) or Amazon UK!


Disclaimer: Most posts made on this blog will include affiliate links, identified by the phrase (affiliate link). As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This comes at no additional cost to you.

Book Review: The Order of the Key by Justine Manzano

Rating: 4 out of 5.

An interesting, unique premise and a plot that will keep you on your toes.

Book CWs: For a list of content/trigger warnings, tropes, and representation found in this book, check out its page on BookTriggerWarnings.com!

Premise (from Goodreads)

Jacklyn Madison never expected to be attacked by a beast on an evening snack run. Add a rescue mission enacted by a trained regiment of teenaged warriors, and her night officially becomes just like a scene from one of her beloved comic books. Turns out, her parents were once members of the Order of the Key, gifted humans that protect humanity from creatures spilling through inter-dimensional rifts. Unable to control her newfound abilities, Jacklyn and her family rejoin the Order.

After an attack on their headquarters leaves Jacklyn questioning their leadership, Kyp–the boy who led her initial rescue–reveals a darker secret. The Order’s leader may be corrupt, and Jacklyn’s questions could put her family in danger. Drawn into the search for proof, Jacklyn must use her guts and magical brawn to protect her family, her friends, and herself from the monsters spilling from rifts, and those hiding within the Order.

Purchase this book (affiliate link): Amazon

Review (No Spoilers)

Thank you to the author, Justine Manzano, for providing me with a complimentary physical copy of the book in exchange for an honest review! My profound apologies for taking so long to review this.

The Order of the Key is a book that surprised me in a very good way. I’m not much of a fantasy reader, and based on the premise and the title, I wasn’t quite sure I was going to enjoy this one. I’m happy to say that I thought this book was pretty darn great.

Not only did the story revolve around a secret magical world that verges on being a dystopia (possibly my favorite sub-genre/trope), it also did a really good job at keeping me interested throughout. I read this book over a series of many days, but even when I wasn’t reading it, I couldn’t stop thinking about the plot and the characters. It kept me going back to read more and more despite my current reading slump.

What stood out to me the most in The Order of the Key was the character-depth and world building. While there were a few times where I was confused about what exactly was going on, this is clearly a book that Manzano spent a great amount of time planning out. The other thing I thoroughly enjoyed the exploration of Jacklyn’s relationship with her sister. When it comes to YA novels, healthy familial relationships is something that is much rarer than I’d like so whenever a book features a family that clearly loves each other (in healthy ways), I appreciate it very much.

The Order of the Key is the first in a series and I can’t wait to see what’s in store for our characters in the future installments!


Disclaimer: Most posts made on this blog will include affiliate links, identified by the phrase (affiliate link). As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This comes at no additional cost to you.

Trope-ical Readathon (March 2021) Wrap Up

Hi everyone! If you’ve been following me on here or on Twitter, my partner and I hosted another round of Trope-ical Readathon this past month. Today I’ll finally be going through the books that I read!

Once again, I was on Team Romance and my goal was to complete all 15 challenges and read all Team Books for a total of 20 books. This round, I ended with a total of 34 books (24 books, 10 manga)

Since there are a lot of books to cover, I’m just going to break them down by rating. I’m leaving out the 10 graphic novels I read but if you’re curious, they were the first 10 volumes of Inuyasha. I’m also leaving out Twilight by Stephenie Meyer because it was a reread and I couldn’t separate my adult feelings from high school nostalgia.

All of the titles below are links to purchase the book on Amazon (affiliate link). As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This comes at no additional cost to you.

And that’s a wrap! If you’re interested in participating in our next round of Trope-ical Readathon, follow the readathon Twitter account @tropeicalreads!

#TheWriteReads #UltimateBlogTour Review: Kate in Waiting by Becky Albertalli

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

An incredibly cute book that focuses on what it means to have a healthy relationship with your friends/family/significant others.

Thank you so much to The Write Reads and Becky Albertalli for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with a complimentary digital copy and media kit!

Purchase this book (affiliate link): Amazon

About the Author

Becky Albertalli is the author of the acclaimed novels Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda (film: Love, Simon), The Upside of Unrequited, and Leah on the Offbeat. She is also the co-author of What If It’s Us with Adam Silvera. A former clinical psychologist who specialized in working with children and teens, Becky lives with her family in Atlanta. You can visit her online at http://www.beckyalbertalli.com.

Twitter: @beckyalbertalli
Website: https://beckyalbertalli.com/

Review

Book CWs

For a list of warnings, tropes, and representation for this book, check out its page on BookTriggerWarnings.com.

Premise (from Goodreads)

From bestselling YA rom-com queen Becky Albertalli (author of Love, Simon) comes a new novel about daring to step out of the shadows and into the spotlight in love, life and theatre.

[PRINCIPAL CAST LIST]

Kate Garfield
Anderson Walker

Best friends, and contrary to popular belief, not co-dependent. Examples:

Carpooling to and from theatre rehearsals? Environmentally sound and efficient.
Consulting each other on every single life decision? Basic good judgment.
Pining for the same guys from afar? Shared crushes are more fun anyway.

But when Kate and Andy’s latest long-distance crush shows up at their school, everything goes off-script.

Enter Stage Left: Matt Olsson

He is talented and sweet, and Kate likes him. She really likes him. The only problem? So does Anderson.

Turns out, communal crushes aren’t so fun when real feelings are involved. This one might even bring the curtains down on Kate and Anderson’s friendship…

Review (No Spoilers)

I enjoyed this book very, very much. Initially, I was worried that I would hate it because love triangles are my least favorite trope of all time. Fortunately, Becky Albertalli handled this in such a profoundly amazing way that it actually didn’t bother me at all.

The book focuses on two best friends, Kate and Anderson, who are both crushing on the same new guy in town. Kate and Anderson are well-known for having what people declare is a co-dependent relationship. They tell each other pretty much everything and are known for often harboring crushes for the same guy. This is just the first time that either of them might have a chance with him. It doesn’t take long before the unattainable communal crush turns into a “friendly” competition that threatens to ruin their friendship.

The reason this book worked so well is that Kate and Anderson care a lot about each other. They are both so focused on trying to make their friendship work during this love triangle that it’s pretty endearing. And while a lot of their plans to make the situation less awkward don’t always work out, their hearts are clearly in the right place. Rather than rooting on any romance to happen in the book, my mind was solely focused on just making sure these two best friends made it out together.

My favorite part about this book, however, was its focus on trying to show teenagers what a healthy relationship looks like, whether it be familial, platonic, or romantic. The book explores Kate’s relationships between every one of those categories, and I think there are many beautiful lessons that readers will be able to take away from it.

Side note: I’ve seen a few reviews complaining about the language of the book and it does use a lot of f-bombs in particular. As an American who has seen teenagers talk like this, I wasn’t at all bothered, but it could be jarring to people who aren’t used to it. I’ve also seen reviews calling the diversity of the cast a “diversity bingo”, but the characters in this book were basically exactly what the drama kids looked like at my high school, so it’s very realistic in my opinion. Ultimately I think it just all depends on what you’ve experienced in your own life. All in all, I’d definitely recommend this book.


Disclaimer: Most posts made on this blog will include affiliate links, identified by the phrase (affiliate link). As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This comes at no additional cost to you.

Book Review: Beach Read by Emily Henry

Rating: 4 out of 5.

A cute but heart-wrenching story of two adults finally learning what it means to love someone.

Book CWs: For a list of content/trigger warnings, representation, and tropes in this book, check out its page on BookTriggerWarnings.com!

Premise (from Goodreads)

A romance writer who no longer believes in love and a literary writer stuck in a rut engage in a summer-long challenge that may just upend everything they believe about happily ever afters.

Augustus Everett is an acclaimed author of literary fiction. January Andrews writes bestselling romance. When she pens a happily ever after, he kills off his entire cast.

They’re polar opposites.

In fact, the only thing they have in common is that for the next three months, they’re living in neighboring beach houses, broke, and bogged down with writer’s block.

Until, one hazy evening, one thing leads to another and they strike a deal designed to force them out of their creative ruts: Augustus will spend the summer writing something happy, and January will pen the next Great American Novel. She’ll take him on field trips worthy of any rom-com montage, and he’ll take her to interview surviving members of a backwoods death cult (obviously). Everyone will finish a book and no one will fall in love. Really.

Purchase this book (affiliate link): Amazon

Review (No Spoilers)

I honestly thought I posted a review of this book back when I read it but apparently I didn’t. My memory isn’t great so forgive me if this review doesn’t go into as much detail as I normally would!

I first ordered Beach Read from Book of the Month because I’m a huge sucker for romance novels but my excitement for this book grew very quickly once it came in the mail. It felt like I was seeing a raving 5 star review for it every day on Twitter!

While the story is marketed as a hate-to-love plot based in competition, it is so much more than that. Both of the main characters have tragic pasts and neither of them truly know what love is. Watching as they slowly began to open up and share their experiences was absolutely amazing. Stories about people learning from their past mistakes and growing to become better will always be one of my favorite things to read.

Something I will mention though is that this book is not a “light read”. Don’t get me wrong, it has super cute moments and a bunch of laughs but it also deals with some heavy topics (see the content warnings above). I spent a good portion of my reading experience crying and hoping that things would end up being fake because a part of me always hopes for romance novels to be what real life isn’t: happy and perfect.

If you’re interested in adult romance with complex and emotional plots, I’d definitely recommend giving Beach Read a try!

First Lines Fridays – April 23, 2021

Welcome back to my blog! It’s that time of the week again where I bring you another First Lines Fridays post! To read my FLF from last week, click here.

First Lines Fridays is a weekly feature for book lovers hosted by Wandering Words. What if instead of judging a book by its cover, its author or its prestige, we judged it by its opening lines?

  • Pick a book off your shelf (it could be your current read or on your TBR) and open to the first page
  • Copy the first few lines, but don’t give anything else about the book away just yet – you need to hook the reader first
  • Finally… reveal the book!

Today’s First Lines

Not all magic is good magic.

Few people can use it, even fewer are born to it. Since the closing of Zarose Gate, our world has toyed with the magic that poured into the air generations ago, turning the insignificant into the extraordinary. The human into the divine.

But even within the divine lies ugliness.

The disappearances of female magicians throughout the years is an ugliness that cannot be ignore, though others might try. Is this foul play by coincidence, or competition? The pattern is undeniable. The silence, deafening. In a world where men rule the stage of magic, it’s been a public secret that any woman who dares rarely makes it into the spotlight. It’s also an undeniable truth that the more others try to extinguish a flame, the greater its power must be. Why else destroy light if not envious of its radiance? Such speculation is not popular opinion, and this, regarded as rumor. For in the world of magic, a woman’s place lies in the quiet shadows of labor magic, the encouraged path. The safer one.

Because the ones who dare more often disappear.

Can you guess what book it is? I decided to include the entire prelude because it was short enough. I got it in an OwlCrate box a while ago and haven’t gotten to reading it yet. Scroll down for the reveal!

Where Dreams Descend by Janella Angeles

In a city covered in ice and ruin, a group of magicians face off in a daring game of magical feats to find the next headliner of the Conquering Circus, only to find themselves under the threat of an unseen danger striking behind the scenes.

As each act becomes more and more risky and the number of missing magicians piles up, three are forced to reckon with their secrets before the darkness comes for them next.

The Star: Kallia, a powerful showgirl out to prove she’s the best no matter the cost

The Master: Jack, the enigmatic keeper of the club, and more than one lie told

The Magician: Demarco, the brooding judge with a dark past he can no longer hide

Where Dreams Descend is the startling and romantic first book in Janella Angeles’ debut Kingdom of Cards fantasy duology where magic is both celebrated and feared, and no heart is left unscathed.


If you’re interested in Where Dreams Descend, you can purchase it on Amazon (affiliate link)!


Disclaimer: Most posts made on this blog will include affiliate links, identified by the phrase (affiliate link). As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This comes at no additional cost to you.

First Lines Fridays – April 16, 2021

Welcome back to my blog! It’s that time of the week again where I bring you another First Lines Fridays post! To read my FLF from last week, click here.

First Lines Fridays is a weekly feature for book lovers hosted by Wandering Words. What if instead of judging a book by its cover, its author or its prestige, we judged it by its opening lines?

  • Pick a book off your shelf (it could be your current read or on your TBR) and open to the first page
  • Copy the first few lines, but don’t give anything else about the book away just yet – you need to hook the reader first
  • Finally… reveal the book!

Today’s First Lines

One woman, in all the world, held the key to the survival of life on Earth.

And they’d lost her.

The Therian race called her the Radiant, for it was through her that nature channeled the energy to their guardians, the Feral Warriors, enabling them to track and destroy the Daemon remnants, the draden, before they snuffed the life from Therians and humans alike. In return, the Feral Warriors protected the Radiant with their lives.

Which was damn hard to do when they didn’t know where…or who…she was.

Can you guess what book it is? It was a featured book in one of the book boxes I’m subscribed to (Bubbles & Books) and I actually got two copies because of a mix up so I might do a giveaway for one of them soon! Scroll down for the reveal!

Desired Untamed by Pamela Palmer

They are called Feral Warriors—an elite band of immortals who can change shape at will. Sworn to rid the world of evil, consumed by sorcery and seduction, their wild natures are primed for release . . .

Kara MacAllister’s quiet small-town life is transformed forever the night a powerful stranger rips her from her home, claiming she is the chosen one—the key to his survival.

Spiriting her away into the rain-soaked night, Lyon reveals a truth Kara can barely credit. She’s immortal, and the only one who can save his race. And deep within her, he arouses a fierce, primal hunger beyond anything she’s ever imagined.

But only when their lives are threatened by an ancient evil will Kara and Lyon realize they have found a love they would risk their immortal souls to claim . . . and a powerful desire that could never, ever be tamed.

And he begins to wonder if the woman who’s stolen his heart is destined to be his salvation…or his doom.


If you’re interested in Desired Untamed, you can purchase it on Amazon (affiliate link)!


Disclaimer: Most posts made on this blog will include affiliate links, identified by the phrase (affiliate link). As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This comes at no additional cost to you.