Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston | book review

This review is spoiler-free!

“History, huh? Bet we could make some.”

Casey McQuiston, Red, White & Royal Blue

Red White and Royal Blue Casey McQuiston book coverTitle: Red, White & Royal Blue
Series: standalone
Author: Casey McQuiston
Published: May 14, 2019
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin 
Category: adult
Genre: contemporary, romance, LGBTQ+
Pages: 421
My Rating: ★★★★☆ (4.5)
Goodreads page

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Synopsis

A big-hearted romantic comedy in which the First Son falls in love with the Prince of Wales after an incident of international proportions forces them to pretend to be best friends…

First Son Alex Claremont-Diaz is the closest thing to a prince this side of the Atlantic. With his intrepid sister and the Veep’s genius granddaughter, they’re the White House Trio, a beautiful millennial marketing strategy for his mother, President Ellen Claremont. International socialite duties do have downsides—namely, when photos of a confrontation with his longtime nemesis Prince Henry at a royal wedding leak to the tabloids and threaten American/British relations.

The plan for damage control: staging a fake friendship between the First Son and the Prince. Alex is busy enough handling his mother’s bloodthirsty opponents and his own political ambitions without an uptight royal slowing him down. But beneath Henry’s Prince Charming veneer, there’s a soft-hearted eccentric with a dry sense of humor and more than one ghost haunting him.

As President Claremont kicks off her reelection bid, Alex finds himself hurtling into a secret relationship with Henry that could derail the campaign and upend two nations. And Henry throws everything into question for Alex, an impulsive, charming guy who thought he knew everything: What is worth the sacrifice? How do you do all the good you can do? And, most importantly, how will history remember you?

[ This synopsis was taken directly from Goodreads. ]

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A Dance with Fire by Aleera Anaya Ceres | Book Review

“All magic came with a price, some prices were just higher than others.”

A Dance with Fire by Aleera Anaya Ceres

This review is short and spoiler-free!

https://m.media-amazon.com/images/I/51QK6euoPXL.jpgTitle: A Dance with Fire
Series: Fae Elementals, #1
Author: Aleera Anaya Ceres
Published: September 21, 2020
Publisher: self-published
Category: new adult
Genres: romance, fantasy, fae
Pages: 502
My Rating: ★★★★☆
Goodreads page

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Synopsis

Shula Azzarh is Fae…

…in a world where it’s illegal to be.

Working at Piriguini’s Circus keeps her hidden in plain sight, but when a vicious accident exposes the truth of what she is, her safe game of hiding comes to an end. Taken by the emperor’s soldiers, Shula is forced into the hands of a mysterious Brotherhood, a group of humans hell-bent on eradicating her race completely.

The Fae Resistance needs her. Their healer hates her. And the Emperor of Illyk will stop at nothing to possess her. The secrets of the empire run deeper than she knows, and Shula will have to rely on the magic she’s suppressed for years to save herself from the emperor’s malicious plans.

Because Shula is an Elemental.

And her fire might be the only thing that can make or break their world.

Fans of Sarah J. Maas and Holly Black will love the first installment in this new, action packed, adult fantasy series!

This is a High Fantasy Fae series intended for readers 18 and over as it contains adult M/F romance, sexually explicit scenes, cursing, and dark themes.

[ This synopsis was taken directly from Goodreads. ]

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Kingdom of the Wicked by Kerri Maniscalco | book review

This review is spoiler-free!

“Love is the most powerful magic. Above all else, remember that. It will always guide you where you need to go.”

Kerri Maniscalco, Kingdom of the Wicked

Title: Kingdom of the Wicked
Series: Kingdom of the Wicked, #1
Author: Kerri Maniscalco
Published: Oct. 27, 2020
Publisher: Jimmy Patterson
Category: YA
Genre: fantasy, magic, witches
Pages: 372
My Rating: ★★★☆☆
Goodreads page

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Synopsis

Two sisters.
One brutal murder.
A quest for vengeance that will unleash Hell itself…
And an intoxicating romance.

Emilia and her twin sister Vittoria are streghe – witches who live secretly among humans, avoiding notice and persecution. One night, Vittoria misses dinner service at the family’s renowned Sicilian restaurant. Emilia soon finds the body of her beloved twin…desecrated beyond belief. Devastated, Emilia sets out to find her sister’s killer and to seek vengeance at any cost-even if it means using dark magic that’s been long forbidden.

Then Emilia meets Wrath, one of the Wicked-princes of Hell she has been warned against in tales since she was a child. Wrath claims to be on Emilia’s side, tasked by his master with solving the series of women’s murders on the island. But when it comes to the Wicked, nothing is as it seems…

[ This synopsis was taken directly from Goodreads. ]

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A Court of Thorns and Roses series recap (books 1 – 3.1)

I don’t know about you, but it’s been a hot minute since I’ve read the ACOTAR series. In honor of the newest book, A Court of Silver Flame, coming out next week, I thought I’d summarize what has happened in the last three books (and one short story) for anyone who needs a refresher before book 4. I’m going to yada yada a lot of the series, but that being said…

THERE ARE MAJOR SPOILERS FOR A COURT OF THORNS AND ROSES, A COURT OF MIST AND FURY, A COURT OF WINGS AND RUIN, AND A COURT OF FROST AND STARLIGHT!

You have been warned.

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Valentine’s Day lovers and haters book recommendations

Romance and no romance book recommendations

Valentine’s Day is around the corner, and people usually have one of two reactions. Either you get excited thinking about it or you just rolled your eyes at me. Either way, I have book recommendations for whether you’re a romantic at heart (like myself) or not.

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Foundryside by Robert Jackson Bennett | Book Review

“All things have a value. Sometimes the value is paid in coin. Other times, it is paid in time and sweat. And finally, sometimes it is paid in blood. Humanity seems most eager to use this latter currency. And we never note how much of it we’re spending, unless it happens to be our own.

Foundryside, Robert Jackson Bennett

This review is spoiler-free.

Foundryside by Robert Jackson Bennet the Founders Trilogy book coverTitle: Foundryside
Series: The Founders Trilogy, #1
Author: Robert Jackson Bennett
Published: August 21, 2018
Publisher: Crown
Category: adult
Genre: fantasy
Pages: 505
My Rating: ★★★★☆
Goodreads page

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Synopsis

Sancia Grado is a thief, and a damn good one. And her latest target, a heavily guarded warehouse on Tevanne’s docks, is nothing her unique abilities can’t handle.

But unbeknownst to her, Sancia’s been sent to steal an artifact of unimaginable power, an object that could revolutionize the magical technology known as scriving. The Merchant Houses who control this magic–the art of using coded commands to imbue everyday objects with sentience–have already used it to transform Tevanne into a vast, remorseless capitalist machine. But if they can unlock the artifact’s secrets, they will rewrite the world itself to suit their aims.

Now someone in those Houses wants Sancia dead, and the artifact for themselves. And in the city of Tevanne, there’s nobody with the power to stop them.

To have a chance at surviving—and at stopping the deadly transformation that’s under way—Sancia will have to marshal unlikely allies, learn to harness the artifact’s power for herself, and undergo her own transformation, one that will turn her into something she could never have imagined.

[ This synopsis was taken directly from Goodreads. ]

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The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab | book review

This review is spoiler-free!

“You know,” she’d said, “they say people are like snowflakes, each one unique, but I think they’re more like skies. Some are cloudy, some are stormy, some are clear, but no two are ever quite the same.”

V.E. Schwab, The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue

Title: The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue
Author: V.E. Schwab
Published: October 6, 2020
Publisher: Tor Books
Category: adult
Genre: historical, contemporary, fantasy, romance
Pages: 442
My Rating: ★★★★☆ (3.5 stars)
Goodreads page

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Synopsis

A life no one will remember. A story you will never forget.

France, 1714: in a moment of desperation, a young woman makes a Faustian bargain to live forever and is cursed to be forgotten by everyone she meets.

Thus begins the extraordinary life of Addie LaRue, and a dazzling adventure that will play out across centuries and continents, across history and art, as a young woman learns how far she will go to leave her mark on the world.

But everything changes when, after nearly 300 years, Addie stumbles across a young man in a hidden bookstore and he remembers her name.

[ This synopsis was taken directly from Goodreads. ]

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How the King of Elfhame Learned to Hate Stories by Holly Black | book review

“Having a heart is terrible, but you need one anyway.”

Holly Black, How the King of Elfhame Learned to Hate Stories

How the King of Elfhame Learned to Hate Stories by Holly Black book coverTitle: How the King of Elfhame Learned to Hate Stories
Series: The Folk of the Air, #3.5
Author: Holly Black
Published: Nov. 24, 2020
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Category: young adult
Genre: fantasy
Pages: 200
My Rating: ★★★★☆
Goodreads page

This short review is spoiler free!

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Synopsis

An illustrated addition to the New York Times bestselling Folk of Air trilogy, that started with The Cruel Prince, from award-winning author Holly Black.

An irresistible return to the captivating world of Elfhame.

Once upon a time, there was a boy with a wicked tongue.

Before he was a cruel prince or a wicked king, he was a faerie child with a heart of stone. #1 New York Times bestselling author Holly Black reveals a deeper look into the dramatic life of Elfhame’s enigmatic high king, Cardan. This tale includes delicious details of life before The Cruel Prince, an adventure beyond The Queen of Nothing, and familiar moments from The Folk of the Air trilogy, told wholly from Cardan’s perspective.

This new installment in the Folk of the Air series is a return to the heart-racing romance, danger, humor, and drama that enchanted readers everywhere. Each chapter is paired with lavish and luminous full-color art, making this the perfect collector’s item to be enjoyed by both new audiences and old.

[ This synopsis was taken directly from Goodreads. ]

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The Sunshine Blogger Award

While I was on break, I was nominated for the Sunshine Blogger Award by the lovely Hundreds & Thousands of Books! Thank you for nominating me, and sorry it took me so long to get to it. 😓

the rules

  • Thank the blogger who nominated you. Do this in your blog post and include a link to their site.
  • Answer the 11 questions that the nominator asked you.
  • Nominate 11 new bloggers to receive the award. Write 11 new questions for them. Notify them by commenting on one of their posts.
  • Within your blog post, include these rules and the Sunshine Blogger Award logo.
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Rise of the Red Hand by Olivia Chadha | ARC review

I was given a free digital ARC in exchange for a honest review.

This review is spoiler-free!

51mpbmvlwflTitle: Rise of the Red Hand
Series: The Mechanists, #1
Author: Olivia Chadha
Expected publication: January 19, 2021
Publisher: Erewhon
Category: YA
Genre: sci-fi
Pages: 384
My rating: ★★★☆☆ (2.5)
Goodreads page

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Synopsis

A rare, searing portrayal of the future of climate change in South Asia. A street rat turned revolutionary and the disillusioned hacker son of a politician try to take down a ruthlessly technocratic government that sacrifices its poorest citizens to build its utopia.

The South Asian Province is split in two. Uplanders lead luxurious lives inside a climate-controlled biodome, dependent on technology and gene therapy to keep them healthy and youthful forever. Outside, the poor and forgotten scrape by with discarded black-market robotics, a society of poverty-stricken cyborgs struggling to survive in slums threatened by rising sea levels, unbreathable air, and deadly superbugs.

Ashiva works for the Red Hand, an underground network of revolutionaries fighting the government, which is run by a merciless computer algorithm that dictates every citizen’s fate. She’s a smuggler with the best robotic arm and cybernetic enhancements the slums can offer, and her cargo includes the most vulnerable of the city’s abandoned children.

When Ashiva crosses paths with the brilliant hacker Riz-Ali, a privileged Uplander who finds himself embroiled in the Red Hand’s dangerous activities, they uncover a horrifying conspiracy that the government will do anything to bury. From armed guardians kidnapping children to massive robots flattening the slums, to a pandemic that threatens to sweep through the city like wildfire, Ashiva and Riz-Ali will have to put aside their differences in order to fight the system and save the communities they love from destruction.

[ This synopsis was taken directly from Goodreads. ]

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