Twisted: Belle's Story Review (Destined #3)

Twisted: Belle's Story (Destined, #3)

Belle was in Ella’s story as one of the privileged students at the Royal Academy. She was also hurt in the attacks, but her family had the money to actually fully heal her. At least, that is the story told in Fated, Ella’s story.

The truth is that Belle was only pretending to act like a stuck-up privileged student to try to bring down her abusive father. She hates her father and was looking into his finances at the bank to see why her family stayed rich during the plague when all the other families took a financial hit. She thinks that she is onto something when the attack happens, and, and the brain damage she gets from the blast causes her to lose part of her memory. Her father refuses to let a healer heal her fully, and chooses to threaten her into submission. Without complete memory of what she was trying to achieve and who she was close to, Belle also has to deal with the prince trying to hit on her. He seems rather close to her, but she can’t even remember why.

I didn’t like Belle in Fated very much, but she only showed up for a brief moment. I wasn’t sure what to expect in a book that would be completely about her, but I knew that I wanted to finish the series. This book was a pleasant surprise.

Belle wasn’t as stuck up as I originally thought she was. She was only acting rude to Ella in order to make her father believe that she was on his side. Everything she did was an act to keep her father on her side, even though she was working against him. I was so sad when she lost her memories, she had been doing so well and was so close to her goal and then everything disappeared before her eyes because of the memory loss. She was one of the strongest “rich girl” characters that I have ever read in a story before, so I hope to see more of her in the books to come.

The only small complaint I had about this story was how much time Belle spent confused. It was kind of annoying after a while as a reader from Belle’s POV to know what she was supposed to be doing, and still see her wandering around, confused and in pain from her unhealed injury. I was only frustrated for a small amount of the book, but it was worth mentioning.

Another thing worth mentioning was that I couldn’t see much of the chemistry between the prince and Belle. They were an okay couple, but I didn’t love them as much as the couples in the previous two books. Overall, I think that this book would rank at the bottom of the books in this series, but because the series is so good, I think it is still a 4 star read.

I would recommend this book to anyone looking for a new Beauty and the Beast retelling.

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 books

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Hidden: Rapunzel's Story Review (Destined #2)

Hidden: Rapunzel's Story (Destined, #2)

Zel is a mage with the Touch. If she touches someone, she can drain the life out of them. She has been under the control of an evil witch for years, and she can’t leave because the witch holds her True Name. Anything her mistress tells her to do, she has to do it. Every time she tries to escape she is caught and punished for it. When she isn’t trapped in her Tower, she is forced to murder people at her mistress’ demands.

When a man randomly climbs up to her tower, Zel knows she will be punished when he is found. But she just can’t force him to go away when he is willing to help her. No one has shown her kindness in years, but he wants to help her escape.

I have to be honest, I never felt much towards the Rapunzel story as a child. It was one of my least favorite tales, some girl up in a castle all her life and then BAM prince to take her away. I didn’t even like Tangled when it came out! But I definitely gained a fondness for the story after reading this retelling of the book.

Zel can take care of herself, and she would leave the castle if her mistress ever gave the chance. She has tried to escape multiple times, but she just can’t break free of her true name being used. The man who comes into her castle can help her create a plan to escape, but she still has to be the one to do it herself. She has to be able to build up the strength to fight back. She has to think of herself as worthy of being saved before she can save herself. Eventually, the man isn’t even helping her to escape much, but instead he is more like the princess in the castle, waiting for Zel to return from another one of her expeditions.

This book also explains a lot of the things that made Zel act the way she did in Fated. I never really understood why Zel was so scared of being caught at the bakery, but once you see her body count in Hidden, you know the danger. There are entire clans after Zel who would want to do to her family what she did to theirs, they do not care that Zel wasn’t even in control of her body as she killed people.

This book moved smoothly, and I was excited to keep reading as I was in the thick of it. I couldn’t wait to see what would happen to Zel next, and I finished both books 2 and 3 in the same day while commuting to work! This Destined series will draw you in and will not let you go until you hear the stories of all these girls.

I would recommend this series to anyone looking for a new fairytale retelling series.

Overall Rating: 6 out of 5 books

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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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The Deep ARC Review

The Deep

The Deep is a fantasy novel about the descendants of African slave women thrown overboard into the sea by slave owners. Pregnant women were thrown overboard for being “sick and disruptive cargo,” but what would have happened if their babies adapted to the new environment and survived anyways? The zoti are the answer to this “what if.” They are born from the bodies of women thrown overboard, but rather than having legs they have tails and can breathe underwater. They do not remember where they came from, as it is too painful for them to remember. Only Yetu is cursed with being the Historian. She is overcome by the pain of the History, of all the horrific memories of the first zoti and of the women thrown overboard. She barely remembers who she is, and she cannot rid herself of the History lest the rest of her people suffer as she does with the memories. But one day, she can’t take it anymore, and flees to the surface. She leaves the rest of her people in the process of the Remembering, the yearly pain of the memories coming to the surface again, and she flees to discover herself outside of the painful memories of the ancestors.

I came into this novel expecting a hard-hitting dark fantasy book that mixed history with the secrets of the ocean in a beautiful way. WHat I read was a confusing story that jumped around in time, where I was never sure of who was speaking. Sometimes the POV only referred to the main character as “We”, sometimes the POV was clearly from Yetu, and sometimes I could never tell who was speaking at all. I kept reading hoping that things would clear themselves up by the end of the story, but they didn’t. The book was so short that I never truly felt any connection to Yetu or her people, and I couldn’t figure out how the side characters were even important to the story at all.

One thing that confused me the most in this story was Yetu’s multiple (?) love interests? I could not tell whose POV the story was supposed to be being told from at the time, but Yetu was with a male side character, and then she was talking to and seemed to be romantically interested in a female character Oori. I am not completely sure if it was even Yetu with the male character, as that occurred during a POV switch where the only pronoun being used was “we.” But it made the story confusing to read as it seemed like Yetu was with both this male character and the female character at the same time, just going back and forth between the two. This is simply one example of something that didn’t add up within the story.

I also couldn’t understand why the other zoti didn’t understand why Yetu was in such pain being the Historian. She was cursed with the Rememberings constantly, and she had to lead them through their own Rememberings as well, so why didn’t they understand her pain. They were clearly in pain during the Rememberings, so why was it so difficult for them to understand that this was how she felt all the time?

The only part that I did like about this book was the dark fantasy aspect. I was horrified by the description of the zoti helping the newborn zoti out of the bodies of their dead mothers, but I loved how it was described and how the instant connection was made from this horrific real world to the underwater fantasy one. I also did enjoy reading some of the flashbacks of history, even though I felt like they could have been expanded on.

If this book had been longer and focused on Yetu’s story alone, I believe I would have really enjoyed it. If the book had been this length and been a collection of short stories from the Rememberings without trying to connect the main plot of Yetu, I believe I would have enjoyed that as well. But as this story was written, it feels more like a hodge-podge of information than a coherent tale, and I could not recommend it.

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

Overall Rating: 2 out of 5 books.

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