Blog Tour Review: Omega Morales and the Legend of La Lechuza by Laekan Zea Kemp

Rating: 3 out of 5.

A perfect option for your middle grade October reads!

Thank you so much to TBR and Beyond Tours and Laekan Zea Kemp for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with complimentary ARC and media kit!

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Blog Tour Reviews: Amira & Hamza Book 1 & Book 2 by Samira Ahmed

Amira & Hamza: The War to Save the Worlds — 3.5 stars
Amira & Hamza: The Quest for the Ring of Power — 4 stars

A fun middle grade fantasy series full of good lessons and good laughs

Thank you so much to TBR and Beyond Tours and Samira Ahmed for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with complimentary ARCs and media kit!

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Blog Tour Review: Belladonna by Adalyn Grace

Rating: 4 out of 5.

A mixture of gothic historical fiction, murder mystery, and haunting supernatural elements

Thank you so much to TBR and Beyond Tours and Adalyn Grace for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with a complimentary ARC and media kit!

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Blog Tour Review: Etta Invincible by Reese Eschmann

Rating: 4 out of 5.

A fun middle grade fantasy full of adventure and life lessons

Thank you so much to TBR and Beyond Tours and Reese Eschmann for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with a complimentary ARC and media kit!

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Book Review: Halloween Girl (Vol. 1-2) by Richard T. Wilson

Rating: 4 out of 5.

An interesting story, but maybe watch the film this is based off of before reading it.

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

Series Premise

‘Death is a lot of damned work’, thinks 18-year-old ghost, Charlotte Williams, as she braves the unsettled world of the In-Between. It’s here the rebellious teen finds the clues she so desperately needs in her battle against diabolic, secret society, The Hollow (who took her life and just happen to be trying to end the world!).

Upon her return to the ‘Bone Yard’ (aka Crystal Springs Cemetery), Charlotte meets up with 20- something supernatural bestie Poe, an acerbic goth who works with her to decipher the latest clues. Fellow ghost, Poe is something of a big sister to Charlotte; strong, hilarious – and always full of secrets. Though Charlotte’s already been dead several years, Poe, on the other hand, may be as old as time! As past victims of The Hollow, both are now intensely dedicated to stopping the evil sect, who chillingly view human existence as a ‘failed experiment’.

After several fraught run-ins with ‘the Devil’s janitors’ (as Poe calls them), Charlotte is devastated when The Hollow kidnap her young son, Luke, in retaliation. Charlotte then suffers from the guilt of screwing up his young life ‘even in death’, before forming a plan with Poe to get him back – and make The Hollow pay.

Ultimately, Charlotte and Poe are forced to cosmically separate in their search for Luke.

However, in doing so, they’re both severely tested and must grapple with their limitations – and their own dark pasts. Along the way, they meet a string of colorful characters both in ‘Hollow Land’ and the All-American (or is it?) Crystal Springs – and maybe even save the world.

Purchase Issue 1 (affiliate link): Amazon

Review (No Spoilers)

Hello everyone! I was lucky enough to get a free copy of both Halloween Girl Vol. 1 and Vol. 2 in exchange for an honest review, so here we go!

Firstly, I don’t know how I didn’t realize this before I started reading these graphic novels, but these are not standalones. The characters in Halloween Girl are from a short 20 min film called The Halloween Girl that came out in 2019. There is also a sister web series that you can check out called, “Under the Flowers”. I read the books without watching the film (because I hadn’t realized this) and was a bit confused as to who exactly Charlotte was and what her powers are, so I would definitely recommend watching the short beforehand. Thankfully there were enough information in the graphic novels for me to infer a bit about everyone.

Whenever I read a graphic novel, one of the main things that affects my enjoyment of the book is how much I like the art. There are many graphic novels that I’ve downright refused to read based on my dislike of the art and there are also some graphic novels I’ve read where the art took away from my enjoyment. Things that I look for are realistic looking drawings as well as distinguishable character features (in other words, can I easily tell two characters apart from each other). I’m happy to say that I was a huge fan of the artist for Halloween Girl. I thought Stephen Mullan did a great job at making things aesthetically pleasing while making them both realistic and scary. My only complaint is that the actual pages in the copies I received were black and white. This didn’t take away from my reading experience but I do think the pages would look really cool if they were in color.

In terms of the story of Halloween Girl, I don’t think I have enough information to make an accurate decision. It’s one of the reasons I had a hard time rating the books. Each volume is very short and ends in a cliffhanger, so I won’t know the entire story arc until I read more installments. That being said, I would definitely be interested in continuing the series as the characters are extremely interesting. If you’re interested in this series, please check it out! Each installment is a short read (approximately 5 min each) so you could really pick them up at any time.


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.

#TheWriteReads #BlogTour: The Carnival of Ash by Tom Beckerlegge

An adult literary alternative history novel perfect for fans of commedia dell’arte

Thank you so much to The Write Reads, Rebellion Publishing, and Tom Beckerlegge for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with a complimentary ARC and media kit!

Purchase this book (affiliate link): Amazon

About the Author

Tom Beckerlegge grew up in the northwest of England in a house filled with books. Writing as Tom Becker, he won the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize with his debut novel; The Carnival of Ash is his first adult book. He lives in Enfield with his wife and young son.

Review (First Impressions)

Book CWs

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

Premise

Cadenza is the City of Words, a city run by poets, its skyline dominated by the steepled towers of its libraries, its heart beating to the stamp and thrum of the printing presses in the Printing Quarter.

Carlo Mazzoni, a young wordsmith arrives at the city gates intent on making his name as the bells ring out with the news of the death of the city’s poet-leader. Instead, he finds himself embroiled with the intrigues of a city in turmoil, the looming prospect of war with their rival Venice ever-present. A war that threatens not only to destroy Cadenza but remove it from history altogether…

Initial Thoughts (No Spoilers)

Welcome back to my blog! Today I’m doing something a bit different and posting some initial thoughts/impressions for a tour book rather than a full review because I’m around 60% through this novel and think that I’ll actually restart it from the beginning now that I have a better idea of how to read it.

Depending on where you look up information about The Carnival of Ash, you’ll get different impressions of what the novel is exactly. Goodreads and several blurbs available online (such as via Amazon and Simon and Schuster) have this tagged as an adult fantasy novel, but in reality it’s more of a literary historical fiction book with some fantasy elements. As many of my fellow reviewers have pointed out, the genre that best encapsulates what The Carnival of Ash is would probably be commedia dell’arte. It reminded me a lot of The City Beautiful by Aden Polydoros.

The writing of this book is beautiful, and the overall plot is one that could be read as several short stories that intertwine with each other, rather than one singular plot. As you make your way through the novel, you’ll get to meet several characters, all with different (often over-the-top) personalities and dramatized story arcs. Depending on how good you are with keeping up with people’s names, I might suggest that you keep a handy character/plot guide next to you as you read for easy reference. I’m extremely bad at remembering which character is who so it’s always useful for me to have something like that, especially for 600 page novels like this one.

The tour has over a week left! If you’d like to follow along with the rest you can find the tour schedule here.


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: A Spindle Splintered by Alix E. Harrow

Rating: 5 out of 5.

A feminist retelling/remix of Sleeping Beauty that captured my heart.

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)

It’s Zinnia Gray’s twenty-first birthday, which is extra-special because it’s the last birthday she’ll ever have. When she was young, an industrial accident left Zinnia with a rare condition. Not much is known about her illness, just that no one has lived past twenty-one.

Her best friend Charm is intent on making Zinnia’s last birthday special with a full sleeping beauty experience, complete with a tower and a spinning wheel. But when Zinnia pricks her finger, something strange and unexpected happens, and she finds herself falling through worlds, with another sleeping beauty, just as desperate to escape her fate.

Purchase this book (affiliate link): Amazon

Review (No Spoilers)

I read this book as part of Trope-ical Readathon and I was definitely not expecting to enjoy it as much as I did. A Spindle Splintered is a novella that is a multi-dimensional feminist retelling of Sleeping Beauty. I’ve actually never watched Sleeping Beauty and I always get a bit confused between how the basic story premise differs from Snow White. A girl goes to sleep because of a curse and is woken up by a prince’s kiss. That’s the same for both right?

The thing that A Spindle Splintered did so well was that it incorporated several different versions of what Sleeping Beauty‘s tale might look like, all while actively pushing back against the fact that at it’s center, Sleeping Beauty is basically the tale of sexual assault. After all, a sleeping person is not actually capable of giving consent.

On top of that, the book also does an amazing job at portraying a healthy relationship. The main characters in A Spindle Splintered are basically constantly flirting between platonic and a romantic relationships. There’s even a kind of complete-circuit love triangle thing going on at certain points that I was actually enjoying quite a bit despite hating the love triangle trope. There was absolutely no way I was going to get upset at all these women caring about each other so wholesomely. These characters managed to be relatable and realistic while also being unfailingly supportive of one another. It was incredible to witness.

A Spindle Splintered is the first book in Alix E. Harrow’s Fractured Fables series, and I absolutely can’t wait to get my hands on the next installment.


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.

#TheWriteReads #BBNYA #BlogTour Review: May Day by Josie Jaffrey

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The adult fantasy/romance that my adult self was looking for.

Thank you so much to The Write Reads and Josie Jaffrey for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with a complimentary eARC and media kit!

Purchase this book (affiliate link): Amazon

About the Author

Josie is the author of multiple novels and short stories. Most of those are set in the Silverse, a pre- and post-apocalyptic world filled with vampires and zombies.

She is currently working on a range of fantasy and historical fiction projects (both adult and YA). Ultimately, she hopes to be a hybrid author, both traditionally- and self-published.

After finishing her degree in Literae Humaniores (Classics) at the University of Oxford, Josie wasn’t sure what to do with her life.

She slogged through a brief stint working for an investment bank in London during the 2008 credit crunch, then converted to law and qualified as a solicitor specialising in intellectual property. She worked at a law firm for five years before moving to a UK-based international publisher in 2016. Whilst she loved law, in the end she didn’t love it quite as much as writing, which she now does almost full time.

Josie lives in Oxford with her husband and two cats (Sparky and Gussie), who graciously permit human cohabitation in return for regular feeding and cuddles. The resulting cat fluff makes it difficult for Josie to wear black, which is largely why she gave up being a goth. Although the cats are definitely worth it, she still misses her old wardrobe.

Review

Book CWs

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

Premise

If the murderer you’re tracking is a vampire, then you want a vampire detective. Just maybe not this one.

It’s not that Jack Valentine is bad at her job. The youngest member of Oxford’s Seekers has an impressive track record, but she also has an impressive grudge against the local baron, Killian Drake.

When a human turns up dead on May Morning, she’s determined to pin the murder on Drake. The problem is that none of the evidence points to him. Instead, it leads Jack into a web of conspiracy involving the most powerful people in the country, people to whom Jack has no access. But she knows someone who does.

To get to the truth, Jack will have to partner up with her worst enemy. As long as she can keep her cool, Drake will point her to the ringleaders, she’ll find the murderer and no one else will have to die.
Body bags on standby.

May Day is the first book in Josie Jaffrey’s Seekers series, an urban fantasy series set in Oxford, England. 

Review (No Spoilers)

I was so excited to get a chance to read May Day because I missed the first tour that TheWriteReads hosted for it. I’m not sure why I didn’t sign up the first time around because this novel was perfect for my vampire-obsessed self.

My obsession with vampires probably started when I was in middle school and my sister introduced me to Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Following that, I read and watched many vampire stories including Angel, The Vampire Diaries, Twilight, Being Human, and Dracula. I was always a sucker for a good vampire romance. On top of that, I also grew up watching and reading many detective/police/mysteries. So when I saw that May Day is not only a story about vampires but a story about vampire detectives, I knew I had to get my hands on a copy.

May Day follows the story of a queer female vampire detective named Jack Valentine (amazing name btw). Jack and her colleagues are investigating the murder of a human that appears to be supernatural in origin. Instead of having a straightforward investigation however, what Jack gets is a twist and tangle of dark secrets, hidden societies, and dangerous men.

I enjoyed reading this novel a lot, even despite the inclusion of the despised love triangle trope that always manages to pop up in vampire fantasies. The pacing and plot keep you hooked until the very end and the world that Josie Jaffrey has built is well-thought out and interesting. She also did a great job in making the characters relatable and realistic, despite their undead and otherworldly nature. I’m excited to see where this story takes us, especially since the temperature on the hate-to-love romance brewing in this novel seems to slowly be edging its way towards flaming hot.

This tour includes reviews of both book 1 (May Day) and book 2 (Judgement Day) in the Seekers series, so be sure to keep an eye out for all of the amazing reviews being shared! If you’d like to follow along with the rest of the tour, you can find the tour schedule here.


I received this book to read and review as part of the 2021 BBNYA competition and the BBNYA tours organised by the TWR Tour team. All opinions are my own, unbiased and honest.

BBNYA is a yearly competition where Book Bloggers from all over the world read and score books written by indie authors. If you are an author and wish to learn more about the BBNYA competition, you can visit the official website http://www.bbnya.com or twitter @bbnya_official. 

The sign-ups are now open for BBNYA 2022 for authors and panelists. 

Click here to enter your book.
Click here to sign up to be a panelist.


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.

#TheWriteReads #UltimateBlogTour Review: Undercover Princess by Connie Glynn

Rating: 4 out of 5.

A cute fantastical story, full of great character dynamics and mysteriously magical plots

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

Purchase this book (affiliate link): Amazon

About the Author

Connie Glynn has always loved writing and wrote her first story when she was six, with her mum at a typewriter acting as her scribe. She had a love for performing stories from a young age and attended Guildhall drama classes as a teenager. This passion for stories has never left her, and Connie recently finished a degree in film theory. It was at university that Connie started her hugely successful YouTube channel Noodlerella (named after her favourite food and favourite Disney princess). After five years of publicly documenting her life and hobbies to an audience of 900,000 subscribers on YouTube, Connie closed the book on the Noodlerella project in a bid for more privacy and to pursue her original passions in the performing arts. Connie now writes music and fiction full- time. Follow Connie on YouTube, Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr @ConnieGlynn

Review

Book CWs

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

Premise

When fairy tale obsessed Lottie Pumpkin starts at the infamous Rosewood Hall, she is not expecting to share a room with the Crown Princess of Maradova, Ellie Wolf. Due to a series of lies and coincidences, 14-year-old Lottie finds herself pretending to be the princess so that Ellie can live a more normal teenage life.

Lottie is thrust into the real world of royalty – a world filled with secrets, intrigue and betrayal. She must do everything she can to help Ellie keep her secret, but with school, the looming Maradovian ball and the mysterious new boy Jamie, she’ll soon discover that reality doesn’t always have the happily ever after you’d expect…

A thrilling world of parties, politics and bad ass princesses, this is the first book in the brand new series THE ROSEWOOD CHRONICLES.

Review (No Spoilers)

Welcome back to my blog where today is day 2 of back-to-back blog tour posts! Today’s review is for Undercover Princess, book 1 in The Rosewood Chronicles.

Undercover Princess is a bit of a difficult book to describe. It is kind of an upper middle grade or lower young adult book, and though it is classified as fantasy, I have a hard time giving it that label. The book barely has any fantasy elements in it other than the fact that there’s nobility involved. There are a few instances of possibly-magical influences affecting the plot, but these are never explicitly verified. I can only imagine that the series will get more fantastical as the books progress.

The other thing that makes this a hard book to describe is the fact that it’s supposed to take place during modern times (there’s mentions of cell phones, video games, etc.) but it feels very historical. The characters are forced to give up their cell phones once the term starts, so a majority of the book seems like it takes place in the past rather than in current day. I’m not sure why there was a choice to make this a contemporary rather than a historical fantasy because I think it might have worked better in historical contexts.

I think this book will definitely appeal to a lot of younger teens, especially those around the main character’s ages (14 years old). It has a lot of cute elements and a variety of character dynamics that anyone would enjoy. Lottie and Ellie, in particular, have the most amazing friendship and the addition of Jamie to make it a trio only served to make their interactions even better. There were a few times I was confused by the writing: the aforementioned note about the historical-ness of it, as well as a strange repetition of the word “anti-thesis” that bothered me considering this is a middle grade/lower YA and that’s not a word I hear a lot. Perhaps it’s used more in the UK?

Overall, I would definitely recommend this to young teens who love royalty and fairytales as well as any adults who are interested! This book tour involves posts for both book 1 (Undercover Princess) and the new release of book 5 (Princess Ever After), so be sure to check out the other posts. If you’d like to follow along with the rest of the tour, you can find the tour schedule here!


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.

#TheWriteReads #BlogTour Review: Blood of the Lost Kingdom by Kristin Ward

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Another suspenseful installment full of descriptive and atmospheric writing.

Thank you so much to The Write Reads and Kristin Ward for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with a complimentary eARC and media kit!

Purchase this book (affiliate link): Amazon

About the Author

Kristin Ward is an award-winning young adult author living in Connecticut. A science and math teacher for over twenty years, she infuses her geeky passions into stories that meld realism and fantasy. Kristin embraces her inner nerd regularly, often quoting 80s movies while expecting those around her to chime in with appropriate rejoinders. As a nature freak, she can be found wandering the woods – she may be lost, so please stop and ask if you see her – or chilling in her yard with all manner of furry and feathered friends. Often referred to as a unicorn by colleagues who remain in awe of her ability to create or find various and sundry things in mere moments. In reality, the horn was removed years ago, leaving only a mild imprint that can be seen if she tilts her head just right. A lifelong lover of books and writing, she dreamed of becoming an author for thirty years before publishing her award-winning debut in 2018. Her first novel, After the Green Withered, is one of many things you should probably read.

https://www.kristinwardauthor.com/
Social Media & Other links: https://bit.ly/KWardAuthor

Review

Book CWs

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

Premise

Mysterious. Hidden. Sacred. Erabel is the beating heart of Dorcha Wood. And its heir has come home.

Fleeing the man who betrayed her, Fiadh returns to her beloved forest, into its heart, to discover her people. And herself. With the aid of Veren, an Aos Sí warrior, she explores her birthright, a world safeguarded from the corruption of mankind. There, she learns the history of a mighty race and the vastness of the power coursing through her blood. 

But beyond Erabel’s boundaries, men are flocking, rallying to an evil lord who covets the strength flowing in Fiadh’s veins. They have their eyes fixed on the lost kingdom of the Aos Sí, and it’s only a matter of time before they breach those borders and come for Fiadh and all who protect her. 

All around her, the world is closing in, as some plot in shadows, and others in the stark light of day.

Review (No Spoilers)

Welcome back to my blog! Today I’m reviewing Blood of the Lost Kingdom which is a sequal to The Girl of Dorcha Wood. If you’re interested in reading my thoughts on the first book, click here.

This book was just as dark as the first. There was no shortage of depictions of violence, death, and grief. Definitely check out the trigger/content warnings above (some provided directly from the author!) if you’re worried about it.

Blood of the Lost Kingdom picks up very shortly after the events of The Girl of Dorcha Wood. We follow several stories involving Fiadh, Gideon, Haegna/Darragh, and a few more. In fact, my main qualm with reading the book was that there were so many stories to follow that I kept getting confused with names and storylines (😅). I would definitely recommend keeping track of the characters one way or another, especially considering that some of the chapter sections take place in the past with characters that reappear in the present.

By far, my favorite character in this book was Dasha, who I assume is the animal depicted on the front cover. She doesn’t have any dialogue, but she was such a hoot (pun intended)! I’m definitely a huge sucker for animal companions in books.

Once again, Kristin Ward did a great job writing a book that is atmospheric and makes you feel like you are physically there, experiencing everything first-hand. The plot is more complex than the first, and does a solid job preparing readers for the next installment. If you’re a fan of historical fantasy, especially one inspired by Irish folklore, definitely give this series a try.

If you’d like to follow along with the rest of the tour, you can find the tour schedule here!


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.