Fated: Cinderella's Story Review (Destined #1)

Fated: Cinderella's Story (Destined, #1)

Ella is the only non-mage in her household. Her stepmother Zel has to stay hidden because she is a powerful mage. She was under the control of someone who held her True Name and was forced to kill many with her powers in the past, so she has many enemies. Now that Zel has two twin daughters who are also mages, she has to make sure that she and her girls stay hidden. If Zel is arrested, the family will be torn apart. So Ella does all in her power to keep the bakery running to support her family. She is also studying at the Royal Academy to try to get a better job to move her family out of the small apartment at the bakery. A mage named Weslan shows up at the bakery looking for protection, and his staying at the bakery threatens Ella’s family’s safety. When a bomb goes off during her final exam and she is hurt, her chance for graduation goes out the window. Ella has to pick up the pieces of her life and find a new way to protect her family.

I have run this blog for 3 years now, and I have read countless fairytales and fairytale retellings throughout my entire life. Something just always draws me to these stories of love and fantasy. I can say, hands down, that this is the best fairy tale retelling series I have ever read. At first I was thinking it would be second only to Court of Thorns and Roses, but the other books in this series continued the fairy tale retelling theme, and it quickly bumped its way up to first place for that category.

Ella isn’t your typical Cinderalla. Zel isn’t cruel to her. She isn’t forced to work for her stepsisters. She does all the work that she does simply because she loves her family and would do anything for them. She wants to get a job by graduating from the Royal Academy so that they can live more comfortably. She would work every day that she lived if it meant that they were safe, and she wouldn’t let anyone get in between her and her family. This is what made her so admirable to me. Family came first, in everything, and she was willing to work hard to keep them safe, even if it stressed her out.

I would also say that this fairy tale retelling deviates some from the original story, which I enjoyed a lot. There is an entire story about Mages versus those with no powers. Those who hold the True names of mages can force them to do their bidding, which means that the Mage population is greatly oppressed in this world. This story is woven delicately in and out of the original Cinderella tale, to make a unique and powerful one of its own. This is what made it my favorite fairytale retelling of all time, and that’s how this book dragged me out of my reading slump.

This story flows perfectly from scene to scene. I don’t believe that the POV ever shifted from Ella, but if it did, it wasn’t confusing in any way and fit right into the rest of the story. There were no dead points in the story or characters that I found to be irritating, so everything made for a very pleasant read.

I won’t spoil anything else as this book was a quick read for me and I don’t want to give any major plot points away. I would recommend this series to anyone who loves fantasy novels or who wants to read a fairytale retelling. This entire series is free through Kindle Unlimited, and book 6 is coming out this year, so I am extra excited to see what Kaylin Lee has in store!

Overall Rating: 6 out of 5 books

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Webtoon Wednesday: My Deepest Secret Review

Warning: This review will have some mentions of animal abuse, so if this bothers you, I suggest that you don’t read this review or this Webtoon!

I typically don’t like Drama/Thriller Webcomics or Webtoons, but I found myself drawn to this one. Emma is a sweet girl who has a boyfriend named Elios. They met while working at a coffee shop and have been together for several months, but Emma is still too scared to get close to him. He is so handsome, everything he does makes her freeze up, but she loves being his girlfriend. Emma thinks that her boyfriend is perfect and could do no wrong. The readers see another side of Elios.

In the first episode, a stray cat pees on Emma’s shoes and grosses her out. Emma leaves to clean off her shoes in the shop, leaving Elios outside with the cat for a few minutes. As the two pass a trashcan, readers see the body of the cat laying next to the can, spattered in blood. I was totally not expecting this for the first episode, but this was how readers know that something is definitely not right with Elios.

This Webtoon will bounce back and forth between the POVs of Emma, another character that she meets in the beginning episodes, and a general POV that just gives more information about the story from no specific character’s viewpoint. There are some points in the story where you can see what Elios is doing, but there isn’t anything besides a few flashbacks that are actually from Elios’ POV so far. I’m expecting more of his POV to be in the next season, where things kick up a notch from the look of the cliffhanger.

The only complaint I have about this comic is that it seemed to be moving a bit slowly. We are 39 episodes in, and the author is currently on a break, but I don’t think that Emma thinks that anything is really off about Elios yet. Only a bit off, even though readers know he has done a lot of messed up things already. I also wish we knew a bit more about what happened to Emma when she was a child. We only have flashbacks of some sort of traumatic experience, but I feel like telling the full story of her childhood would greater enhance the reader’s understanding of why Elios has latched onto her so and why she feels so connected to him.

Overall, I would definitely recommend this Webtoon to anyone looking for a dramatic thriller with some horror elements.

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 paintbrushes

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Top Ten Tuesday: Most Anticipated Book Releases for the First Half of 2020

Top Ten Tuesdays are hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. I actually don’t have ten books for this list, as I typically don’t usually anticipate books coming out. I always get surprised when new books come out, and I typically don’t find myself waiting for the next book of a big series! I also always have books to read, so I don’t really find myself waiting around for a specific book to come out. But I want to try to do all the TTTs for 2020, so here are my top 5 books that I am looking forward to reading this year!

1) House of Earth and Blood

House of Earth and Blood (Crescent City, #1)

I love Sarah J. Maas’ Court of Thorns and Roses series, and I don’t know when the next book in that spinoff series is coming out. While I was in the process of looking for the next ACOTAR book, I found out that Maas is going to be coming out with an entirely new series about Angels and Demons in March of this year! I personally haven’t finished the Throne of Glass series, so I hope to be able to finish those books and then pick this one up when it comes out. Read the synopsis by clicking the book cover!




2) The Chosen #2

The Chosen #2 (Contender, #2)

I really do enjoy Taran Matharu’s books, and I was lucky enough to be on a blog tour for the first book of this series, The Chosen. I didn’t absolutely love The Chosen, but I definitely liked it a lot and I think that this series has a lot of potential. I can’t wait to see what book 3 has in store for Cade. Read the synopsis by clicking the book cover!






3) Masters’ Mistress

Masters' Mistress (The Angel Eyes #1)

I read the prequel to the Angel Eyes series many months ago, and I absolutely loved it. These books do not romanticize slavery in any way, the men of this world are beaten and broken because they lost the war and have been abused by the women of the world for so long. Jake’s Redemption was an amazing read, I wasn’t expecting the prequel to be so fleshed out. I actually forgot that I was only reading a prequel to the main series after a while. Now, I am excited to see what will happen to rebellious Bret and kind Angel in the next book of this unique series. Read the synopsis by clicking the book cover!


4) The Damned

The Damned (The Beautiful, #2)

I loved The Wrath and the Dawn, but I haven’t finished that series yet. I loved Flame In The Mist, but I haven’t finished that series either even though I got Smoke In The Sun signed by RenĂ©e Ahdieh! I haven’t even STARTED The Beautiful yet, but I know that I am going to love it. Therefore, I know that I am already excited for The Damned to come out next year. Read the synopsis by clicking the book cover!






5) The Gilded Ones

The Gilded Ones (Deathless, #1)

This book I had no idea about until I started creating this list, but I am super excited for it. This book is about a 16 y/o girl named Deka who lives in fear of her blood ceremony. If she has red blood, she will become a member of her village. But on the day of her ceremony, her blood runs gold, and she will face the consequences of her impurity. Then she is offered a place in an army of girls who also have the “impure” blood, and so she has to leave the village she has always loved. I am actually going to try to get an advance copy of this book if it pops up on Netgalley, so wish me luck! Read the synopsis by clicking the book cover!






Thanks for reading my Top 5 picks for next year, which books are you anticipating?

Let It Be Me Review (Love Unexpected #1)

Let it Be Me (Love Unexpected #1)

Megan has been a live-in nanny for Adam’s son Charlie for 5 years. She dreams of being a teacher, and she has been trying to find another job for years. When she finally gets the job she wants, she wants to help Adam make sure that Charlie has a good nanny. Someone who actually cares about him and won’t leave him again like his mother left him.

But Adam doesn’t think that a nanny is good enough, he wants a wife who will actually be committed to staying with him and his son. Now, Megan has to work as a matchmaker to find Adam a woman who will fit both him and his son. Adam thinks that he can just find a wife like a business transaction, a situation that will just be mutually convenient for both himself and the woman. Megan knows that in order for Charlie to have a good childhood, there needs to be love in the home. Now, she just has to prove to Adam that she is right.

I have read quite a few boss-employee romances before, but this one was extra special because there was a child involved. Charlie’s childhood was at stake here, as his dad couldn’t be there for him when he was overworking himself in his office job. Without a nanny, no one would be there to supervise and care for Charlie as he grew. Charlie was already feeling isolated because his dad was always busy with work; losing Megan would be devastating for him. Megan is hurt when Adam just wants to marry as a business transaction and not for love, so she could just try to set Adam up with anyone to hurt him. But instead, she actually cares and tries to find Adam a good match for Charlie’s sake.

The only thing that bothered me slightly about this book was how it woudld drag on and on sometimes. I would get tired of seeing Adam and Megan stuck in the same spot chapter after chapter. They could both tell their feelings for each other were real, but by the middle of the book they kept dancing around the subject. Eventually I just wanted them to either part ways or get together, as I didn’t think they wer a good match. Then things changed and I was back on the Alex x Megan train.

Overall, I would recommend this book to anyone looking for a new adult family romance novel.

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 books

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Lady Charlotte's Dilemma Review

Lady Charlotte's Dilemma

Lady Charlotte accidentally gets turned into a vampire by Bess, a former prostitute who was turned into a vampire several quite some years before. The story alternates between the points of view and Charlotte and Bess. Bess had a very interesting life as she used to be on the streets of the city during the Elizabethen era before she was turned into an immortal vampire. Charlotte was a rule-following lady who just wanted to be happy and live a good life in society before she was turned into a vampire. Now, she wants to eat, but how will she find someone to drink from as a vampire without throwing away the values she has held dear for so many years.

I was truly looking forward to this historical fantasy/fiction mixture of a wonderful vampire tale. Unfortunately, I did not enjoy it half as much as I thought I would.

I didn’t feel as if I could connect with the characters. I felt as if Bess was shallow. Although she had several seemingly deep conversations with the man who had turned her, I felt like I didn’t get to know her as a character. We jump right from her being a older teenaged girl on the streets to being an old vampire who accidentally turned Charlotte. The way the points of view kept switching back and forth, I feel like I wasn’t able to learn enough about either character.

Charlotte was a good girl, but she seemed boring. Every single time I thought she was going to drink from a human and step away from society’s expectations of who she was supposed to be, she backed off and tried to go a different route.

The pacing of the story was also a bit off. I was moving through the story for the first 100 or so pages, but by the time I got to the middle, I felt like the story slowed down to a crawl. I struggled to finish the book, and this could have fueled why I didn’t feel connected to the characters.

I wouldn’t recommend this book to anyone looking for a historical fiction novel or a fantasy vampire novel.

I received a copy of this book and this is my voluntary review.

Overall Rating: 1 out of 5 books

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Kind of Love Webtoon Review

I’ve started reading Webtoons again during my latest reading slump, and I stumbled across this random comic. It isn’t all created by the same person, but instead one artist draws a three-part short story that is included in the overall collection.

Kind of Love is about love, but not just the romantic kind of love. So far, my favorite story has been one that focused on an elderly woman reminiscing about the love she had for her wife, who has since passed away. She has been lonely ever since, but in the story she finds love in an unexpected place.

The fact that these comics are drawn by different artists just adds to the beauty of the collection. Each artist has their own style for the specific type of love that they are showcasing in their short story. These styles tend to fit the theme. One story about children was drawn in a very cute way with more chibi-style characters while one about a broken adult relationship was drawn in the style of the more adult drama Webtoons. The style always fit the story, which I appreciated. These stories are not all happy stories about love, but they do show all sides of love, both the heartbreak and the happiness.

There’s literally no story that I haven’t enjoyed so far in this Webtoon, and I am excited to see which ones are coming next. I came across this comic at almost midnight, and I still had to stay up to catch up with all the stories. I hope you all enjoy this comic as much as I did if you get the chance to read it!

I would recommend this Webtoon to anyone looking for an animated series about all kinds of love.

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 Paintbrushes

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