The Forgotten Series Blog Tour Spotlight

Title: A FORGOTTEN GODDESS (The Forgotten #1)

Author: Cecilia Randell

Pub. Date: September 20, 2018

Publisher: Cecilia Randell

Formats: Paperback, eBook

Pages: 236

Find it: GoodreadsAmazon

READ FOR FREE ON KU!

An abandoned Egyptian goddess follows her visions to Ireland, and finds more than she ever bargained for… 

An abandoned Egyptian goddess follows her visions to Ireland, and finds more than she ever bargained for…

Bat Sitru used to be a goddess. Well, technically she still is. But with no followers, no temples, and only the overly mischievous cat-goddess Bastet as a friend, it’s difficult to lay claim to the title.

When her visions—once faded—return to her, they point to a land in the north, one of green slopes, mist, and rainbows. She is shown a hope for comfort and home, something that has long been missing from her existence.

Once there, she begins to wonder if her visions have led her wrong. She’s cold, damp, and her new landlords, the O’Loinsigh brothers, are not particularly welcoming. On top of that, she is confronted by a dead leprechaun on the rear stoop, a dagger that sucks the life of immortals, and territorial gods.

As past secrets collides with the present, will Bat be able to carve a place for herself in this new land? Or will this goddess be forgotten once more?

Please note: A previous, and shorter, version of this story was released in the anthology Shamrocked. This is also a slow-burn RH.

Title:  THE LEGENDS THAT REMAIN (The Forgotten #2)

Author: Cecilia Randell

Pub. Date: December 6, 2018

Publisher: Cecilia Randell

Formats: Paperback, eBook

Pages: 291

Find it: GoodreadsAmazon

READ FOR FREE ON KU!

A storm is brewing, and this goddess does not like the damp… 

Bat Sitru, an Egyptian goddess, is content in her new life in Sligo, Ireland. She tends the bar, participates in all the sing-songs she cares to, and is making new friends. The only thing she could wish to change is her relationship with the O’Loinsigh brothers—they’ve grown distant, and she’s afraid to upset the careful balance the four of them have found.

Before she can figure out what to do about that distance, an invitation arrives from the head of the O’Loinsigh family, leading to the revelation of long-held secrets and her visions come to life once more. What she will need to face this time is nothing so simple as a mad woman out for revenge—old legends are stirring as an ancient evil seeks to return.

Along with Dub, Mell, Shar, the reluctant Finn, and a host of other outcasts, Bat will confront a growing conspiracy of fae, gods, Fomoiri, and an evil long locked away. All she wants is to enjoy her strawberries and tea, and maybe a kiss or two, but sometimes a goddess has to do…

Well, a goddess has to do what a goddess has to do. 

Title: THE FINAL MELODY (The Forgotten #3)

Author: Cecilia Randell

Pub. Date: April 27, 2019

Publisher: Cecilia Randell

Formats: Paperback, eBook

Pages: 255

Find it: GoodreadsAmazon

READ FOR FREE ON KU!

Bat Sitru and her merry band of fae are officially on the run… 

Or are they on the hunt? It’s hard to tell. Separated from Dub and Shar, Bat can only concentrate on getting through the next steps of their piece-meal plan to defeat Balor. They have all the tools to defeat the would-be god, now they just have to pull it all together.

With new and unexpected allies, as well as a horde of sluagh on their heels, Bat and her boys race to find Tir Hudi and the cauldron before their enemies know they’re there.

In the end, it will be up to her, that forgotten goddess, to restore the balance and prevent the world from descending into chaos…

Note: Yes, for those who have not read the first two books yet, this is a “why choose” type romance.

About Cecilia:

Cecilia Randell was born in Austin, Texas and grew up in a home with her very own Cheerful Bulldozer.  After some brief adventures in various places such as California and Florida, she returned to her hometown and took up a career in drafting.  A lifetime lover of words and stories, the transition to writing was two-fold: a comment from a relative and a short line from another author, saying to write what you want to read.

And thus the new adventure was born.

Now she can be found most days curled up in a comfy chair and creating new tales to share with others.

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Giveaway Details:

1 winner will receive a signed set of the books, US Only.

3 winners will receive the series in ebooks, International.

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Tour Schedule:

Week One:

7/8/2019- BookHoundsInterview

7/8/2019- A Dream Within A DreamExcerpt

7/9/2019- Jaime’s WorldGuest Post

7/9/2019- Owl Always Be ReadingGuest Post

7/10/2019- The Tired BuyerGuest Post

7/10/2019- Julia SwoonsExcerpt

7/11/2019- Smada’s Book SmackExcerpt

7/11/2019- Lisa Loves LiteratureSpotlight

7/12/2019- Books a Plenty Book ReviewsReview

7/12/2019- Two Chicks on BooksInterview

Week Two:

7/15/2019- Sometimes Leelynn ReadsReview

7/15/2019- Cindy’s Love of BooksReview

7/16/2019- Book BriefsReview

7/16/2019- Burgandy IceExcerpt

7/17/2019- The Reading LifeReview

7/17/2019- ParajunkeeExcerpt

7/18/2019- Bri’s Book NookReview

7/18/2019- Reese’s ReviewsReview

7/19/2019- Drink Coffee and Read BooksReview

7/19/2019- Good Choice ReadingExcerpt

Challenges of the Gods Review

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perf5.000x8.000.inddAfter Mike goes through a gut-wrenching betrayal by his fiancée, he finds himself in what he thinks might be the afterlife. But this is no heaven. The gods made a mistake and created another Earth in a parallel universe, putting both universes in peril. They need someone from his planet to destroy the alternate, and Mike is randomly selected for the job.

Trapped in an impossible choice, Mike accepts his mission and is returned to an Earth—and a body—so unlike his own. There, he meets Jane, who is—unbeknownst to him—the secret leader of an organization bent on tracking down Earth’s saboteur. In the face of her passion for humanity, Mike’s resolve falters. If Mike won’t complete his mission, the gods will.

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At the start of the book, Mike is approached by the gods or the messengers. Mike is sent on a mission to kill everyone on an alternate universe of Earth. He wakes up in the body of another man who is almost like him, but on a world that isn’t his own. He doesn’t understand the social cues of this world, his friend thinks that he is crazy because of his paranoia, but no one understands. He doesn’t want to kill everyone, but the messengers say that he has to in order to save his world. Is murdering an entire population worth it to save his planet?

I started this book thinking it was going to be a story about the “evil” Greek gods, but it really wasn’t. By the time the book was halfway through, the gods had turned into general alien “messengers.” Also, they didn’t really do that much! Mike was placed on Earth with a secret mission to kill everyone. How is he supposed to kill everyone when he is only one man? I don’t know. Honestly, it doesn’t really make sense. You can’t expect one human man, whether he is from the future or not, to be able to destroy an entire population. It just isn’t going to happen. Then, the synopsis says that the gods are going to do the job themselves. I never really saw the gods intervene anywhere else in the story? Maybe they did at the end, but I was so lost that by that point I didn’t really know what was going on.

I have to say, I didn’t really like Mike. He didn’t choose to be a secret agent, but when he got to the new Earth, he didn’t even try to be conspicuous. He would assume things and act first before reading the situation. Sometimes I wonder why he was discharged from the hospital when he clearly wasn’t acting right in the head. Especially given that his daughter had died recently, and now he doesn’t remember anything and he is acting strangely? He could be a danger to himself and a danger to those around him.

At first, Mike is just hanging out with his friend, pretending as if he is getting his memory back, trying to adjust to the new world. Then, He is teaming up with his friend to create technology. He claims that this technology will make his friend’s world better, but Mike thinks that this is really an easy way to get into the homes of all the citizens on the new Earth. I was keeping track of this storyline, thought that the new tech was interesting, and couldn’t wait to see what happened next.

Then, the storyline took a turn. All of a sudden, Mike was crushing on this woman named Jane and was a part of some top-secret military team. I had no clue what was going on, and I didn’t figure it out. I was confused from that point forward. Why are there just random top-secret military teams on Earth? I thought that they may have been to catch Mike, as this was hinted at somewhere in the book, but my suspicions weren’t confirmed until I reread the synopsis when I was done with the novel. It just didn’t make sense. And then of course in Mike’s world everyone is just having sex with no strings attached all the time, so he has to get used to being in a normal Earth relationship, and this was…something. I can’t say that I didn’t like the romance storyline, but I didn’t love it. It felt like the characters had little to no chemistry, and then all of a sudden they were madly in love with each other.

There were little tidbits of story that I found interesting, like how Mike rewired his brain so that it would work properly, and how the messengers were affecting other people in Mike’s new Earth. And I loved the action scenes. The action scenes really drew me in, and kept me flying through the pages until they were over. But even great action scenes and okayish romance and interesting tidbits could not save the entire story for me.

I wouldn’t recommend this book, but if you are into sci-fi comedy, you might have a few good laughs with this story!

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

Overall Rating: 1.5 out of 5 books

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The Cold is In Her Bones Blog Tour Plus Review

the cold is in her bonesAge Range: 12 and up
Grade Level: 7 – 9
Hardcover: 288 pages
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books (January 22, 2019)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1481488449
ISBN-13: 978-1481488440

Praise for THE COLD IS IN HER BONES

“A dark and enchanting tale about friendship, pain, revenge, and the power of love, The Cold Is in Her Bones is the perfect read for Greek mythology fans and YA readers alike.” ―Bustle

“Fiercely written and beautifully feminist, The Cold is in Her Bones reminds us of the power of loyalty and love in the face of ignorance and fear. I loved this tale of dangerous girls with wild hair and tangled hearts.” ―Lisa Maxwell, New York Times bestselling author of The Last Magician

“A fresh, eerily compelling tale of betrayal, revenge, and the ties that bind. When van Arsdale paints a world, you can feel the fog against your skin.” ―Elly Blake, New York Times bestselling author of The Frostblood Saga

One girl must uncover secrets of the past to save her friend from a terrible curse in this dark and mesmerizing story of love, revenge, and redemption inspired by the myth of Medusa.

Milla knows two things to be true: Demons are real, and fear will keep her safe.

Milla’s whole world is her family’s farm. She is never allowed to travel to the village and her only friend is her beloved older brother, Niklas. When a bright-eyed girl named Iris comes to stay, Milla hopes her loneliness might finally be coming to an end. But Iris has a secret she’s forbidden to share: The village is cursed by a demon who possesses girls at random, and the townspeople live in terror of who it will come for next.

Now, it seems, the demon has come for Iris. When Iris is captured and imprisoned with other possessed girls, Milla leaves home to rescue her and break the curse forever. Her only company on the journey is a terrible new secret of her own: Milla is changing, too, and may soon be a demon herself.

Suspenseful and vividly imagined, The Cold Is in Her Bones is a novel about the dark, reverberating power of pain, the yearning to be seen and understood, and the fragile optimism of love.

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This novel tells the story of a curse and a family. It opens with an almost Cinderella-like story where a mother hated the older daughter and constantly doted on the younger one. Nothing that Hulda ever did would please her mother, and she barely remembers the last time that her mother showed her any affection. Her mother would brush her sister’s hair for hours while she forced Hulda to do chores. Hulda found out that she could talk to snakes with some sort of secret language, and snakes became her friends.
I wasn’t that impressed with Hulda honestly, there was no real explanation of why certain things happen. I won’t spoil anything, but it had a lot to do with demons and stuff, and it was confusing as to what was really happening. Then you see the curse, and the book truly starts to pick up the pace.
As I was introduced to Milla, I was immediately intrigued. The curse had been on the village for what seemed to be a while by the time she was born, and she had grown up putting salt by windows and doors to keep the demons away. Children were being possessed by demons, and if you were taken to “The Place,” you were never going to return. Girls in the village lived in fear, and Milla was forbidden from seeing them. The only friend she had was her brother, and eventually, even he grew up. He wanted to be married and have a proper life, and his parents were ready to prepare him for that. Milla was going to lose her only companion, until Iris shows up. Milla instantly knows that they were meant to meet, she knows that Iris was meant to be her friend. Then when Iris is possessed and begs Milla to keep her from having to go to the Place against her will.
Milla and Iris are truly great friends from the start. Something was always a bit off about Iris, but something was just a bit off about this whole story. Arsdale is a great storyteller, and she builds an atmosphere of dread throughout the entire book. Why did Milla’s family live outside the village? Why couldn’t Milla have any friends? Why did putting salt down stop demons from coming into your house? All these simple things just made you feel like something wasn’t right until the truth is revealed. I won’t spoil it, but it definitely surprised me! I instantly went from being like “this book is pretty good” to saying “wow I am loving this book!”
I would definitely recommend this suspenseful read to anyone looking for a new fantasy novel to read. I would warn you though, some scenes can be a little gross or disturbing. As long as you aren’t easily creeped out by things, you should be able to make it through this read. I did, and I’m pretty weak when it comes to unnatural stuff.
I received an advance copy of this book and this is my honest review.
Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 books
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WEEK ONE

JANUARY 22nd TUESDAY Movies, Shows, & Books REVIEW
JANUARY 22nd TUESDAY The Avid Reader EXCERPT
JANUARY 23rd WEDNESDAY BookHounds YA REVIEW & INTERVIEW
JANUARY 23rd WEDNESDAY Booknerdchelcie REVIEW
JANUARY 24th THURSDAY Bibliobibuli YA INTERVIEW
JANUARY 24th THURSDAY Sabrina’s Paranormal Palace REVIEW
JANUARY 25th FRIDAY Wishful Endings REVIEW
JANUARY 25th FRIDAY Book Birds INTERVIEW
JANUARY 26th SATURDAY Casia’s Corner REVIEW
JANUARY 26th SATURDAY Introvert Booklover EXCERPT 

WEEK TWO
JANUARY 27th SUNDAY Nay’s Pink Bookshelf REVIEW
JANUARY 27th SUNDAY RhythmicBooktrovert REVIEW
JANUARY 28th MONDAY Here’s to Happy Endings REVIEW
JANUARY 28th MONDAY Bri’s Book Nook REVIEW
JANUARY 29th TUESDAY JeanBookNerd GUEST POST
JANUARY 29th TUESDAY Such a Novel Idea REVIEW & PLAYLIST
JANUARY 30th WEDNESDAY Ohana Reads REVIEW & EXCERPT
JANUARY 30th WEDNESDAY Tween 2 Teen Book Reviews REVIEW & TENS LIST
JANUARY 31st THURSDAY A Dream Within A Dream REVIEW & EXCERPT
JANUARY 31st THURSDAY Vicky Who Reads REVIEW & TENS LIST 
*JBN is not responsible for Lost or Damaged Books in your Nerdy Mail Box*

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Stay: A Love Story Review

Stay: A Love Story“Sometimes, love isn’t as magical as people expect it to be…”

Rona believes love is nothing more than a myth, a tale for little girls. Until the immortal ruler of the seas appears from thin air and she is swept into a dark and dangerous affair, turning myth into a grave reality.

Commanded to work as the savior of true love, Rona realizes that love is just an illusion as grandiose as magic and after two thousand years, she is ready to give up. Until the night a human, deep in the underbelly of the city that never sleeps, sees her. She recognizes him instantly, a lost love. Trouble is, he has no memory of her.

Tasked with mending a relationship between the love she lost thousands of years ago and another woman, Rona will have to learn what it means to be human all over again when past and present collide.

Can love transcend time or will Rona be forced to roam the earth alone, forever?

This book is a mixture of a mythology story and a romance novel, and I loved every minute of it.

Let’s start with Rona. She is a unique character who has been cursed by a former lover. She has spent the last 2000 years protecting the true love of various humans and helping humans escape fake love and find true love. They never see her, never know she is there, and she is unable to show herself to them. It is a lonely life, but it is the life she has been chosen to live. Then she meets Cain. He has the same face as her former love, but it is marred by a scar. He can see her, and she does not know why.

To be honest, she put up more of a fight than the normal girl-who-meets-hot-guy-but-is-on-a-mission characters usually do. She tried to push him away with all that she had so that she could reunite him with his true love, his ex-girlfriend. He just wouldn’t allow her to, as he wanted to be with her as well.

I loved the storyline with the ex-girlfriend. She may have originally come off as being an awful person, but Silverwood makes sure that her readers do not leave the book seeing her as some sort of villainous character. She was not a villain, she was just a victim of her own circumstances. Sure, she didn’t make the best decisions, but she was trying to get out of her situation. She also didn’t do that much to try to hurt Rona, even though she did try to get her a job with her boss.

The story started off slow, but I flew through it once it picked up the pace somewhere around the middle. I enjoyed both the beginning and the middle of the story, but I have to say that I didn’t like the ending at all. I just….it just didn’t make any sense to me. If the book had ended the way that I thought it would, it would have been perfect in my head! But it didn’t. After all that character development too! It just seemed to fall short. But besides the ending, the book was awesome.

This book had no editing errors that I noticed as I was reading it. The cover is also pretty, which is a plus! But even though the cover made me think that the book was going to be a more mature read, it is relatively clean. There weren’t any detailed sexual scenes that I picked up on as I read.

I would recommend this book to anyone looking for a new urban fantasy romance novel.

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

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 books

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Blinding Night Blog Tour Plus Review

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unnamed.jpgAbout the Book:

Title: BLINDING NIGHT

Author: Chantal Gadoury

Pub. Date: October 2, 2018

Publisher: The Parliament House 

Formats: Paperback, eBook

Pages: 289

Find it: GoodreadsAmazonB&NKobo

What if you were the missing piece in one of the world’s most epic legends? 


Despite being an art history student, Summer isn’t thrilled to be stuck with her archeologist family all summer in Greece. While the rest of her college friends are posting a million selfies by the pool together, Summer is stuck alone, trying to entertain herself alone in a place where she doesn’t even speak the language. 


Upon her arrival to Greece, strange dreams and even stranger shadows seem to haunt Summer, leaving her to ponder the meaning of pomegranate seeds and twisted, darkened faces. 


Suddenly, her stay abroad leads to tragic twists, leaving Summer in the arms of a dark stranger, who claims to be the god, Hades, whom she feels like she knows from another life. In a whirlwind through the busy streets of Athens, Summer is seduced to the lowest point of Greece where Hades’ lair awaits…the Underworld. Determined to find out who she is and where she belongs in an age-old myth, Summer joins Hades to discover that the secrets about her past life are beyond anything she could have ever imagined.

My Review

Summer already knew that her summer was going to be unique. She just thought that it would be uniquely boring as she spent the summer with her archaeologist family in Greece. Not the ideal way to spend the last summer with her high school friends before heading off to college. Then, an accident occurs and she ends up being under the care of a man who claims to be Hades. Summer always had strange dreams, but now they start piecing themselves together as she learns about her past lives. She is the key to Hades’ mystery, but she doesn’t even know how she fits into the equation. Luckily, the dreams are there to teach her.

The book did start off slowly, but it picked up pace rather quickly. Once you get past the 50% mark, you will be thrown right into the Hades storyline. At first, I thought Summer was being a little ungrateful by not appreciating her trip to Greece, but she isn’t a typical ungrateful YA character. Her family was a little overbearing, so I could definitely understand her wanting her space.

In this story, Hades is portrayed as something other than evil and hateful. I won’t spoil anything, but his actions were more out of love than anything. I definitely liked to see him interacting with Summer in the Underworld.

The only reason why this book was a 4 star instead of 5 stars read for me was that it had such a slow start. By taking so long to “get to the point,” I ended up losing focus and dragging through the read at the start, Again, once I reached the 30% point when Hades first came into the picture and the 50% point where the storyline really picked up the pace. It was definitely unique to see the mostly-forgotten souls of the Underworld actually interacting with Summer. And the ending, wow. This was definitely a worthwhile read.

The plot of this book moves smoothly, and there was a lot of character development on both Summer and Hades’ parts. I did not notice any editing errors even though I was reading an advanced copy/unfinished copy of this book. No little things got in the way of my excellent reading experience.

I would recommend this book to lovers of YA/NA fantasy romance novels.

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

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

 

Chantal.jpgAbout Chantal:

Amazon Best Selling Author, Chantal Gadoury, is a 2011 graduate from Susquehanna University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Creative Writing.

Since graduation, she has published “The Songs in Our Hearts” with 48Fourteen Publishing, and “Allerleirauh” with Parliament House Press, with future titles to follow. Chantal first started writing stories at the age of seven and continues with that love of writing today.

Writing novels for Chantal has become a life-long dream come true! When she’s not writing, she enjoys painting, drinking lots of DD Iced Coffee, and watching Disney classics. Chantal lives in Muncy, Pennsylvania with her Mom, Sister and furry-‘brother’ (aka, puppy) Taran.

Subscribe to Chantal’s Newsletter! https://www.chantalgadoury.com/newsletter

Website |  Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Goodreads | Amazon Author Page | BookBub |  Pinterest

Giveaway!

1 winner will win a signed finished copy of BLINDING NIGHT, US Only.

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Tour Schedule:

Week One:

10/1/2018- PopTheButterfly Reads– Review

10/2/2018- BookHounds YA– Excerpt

10/3/2018- YA/NA Book Divas– Review

10/4/2018- Bri’s Book Nook– Review

10/5/2018- Vesper Dreams– Review

 

Week Two:

10/8/2018- Such A Novel Idea– Review

10/9/2018- A Bookish Dream– Review

10/10/2018- Book Briefs– Review

10/11/2018- Random Bookish Banter– Review

10/12/2018- Adventures Thru Wonderland– Review

Aru Shah and the End of Time Review

Aru Shah and the End of Time (Pandava Quartet, #1)Twelve-year-old Aru Shah has a tendency to stretch the truth in order to fit in at school. While her classmates are jetting off to family vacations in exotic locales, she’ll be spending her autumn break at home, in the Museum of Ancient Indian Art and Culture, waiting for her mom to return from her latest archeological trip. Is it any wonder that Aru makes up stories about being royalty, traveling to Paris, and having a chauffeur?

One day, three schoolmates show up at Aru’s doorstep to catch her in a lie. They don’t believe her claim that the museum’s Lamp of Bharata is cursed, and they dare Aru to prove it. Just a quick light, Aru thinks. Then she can get herself out of this mess and never ever fib again.

But lighting the lamp has dire consequences. She unwittingly frees the Sleeper, an ancient demon whose duty it is to awaken the God of Destruction. Her classmates and beloved mother are frozen in time, and it’s up to Aru to save them.

The only way to stop the demon is to find the reincarnations of the five legendary Pandava brothers, protagonists of the Hindu epic poem, the Mahabharata, and journey through the Kingdom of Death. But how is one girl in Spider-Man pajamas supposed to do all that?

I waited quite a while to read this book, and I was super excited to read it! Even though my experience with this novel was mostly positive, I did have some issues with some of the things in it.

Let me start off by saying that I loved the inclusion of mythology in this novel. It was all so unique, and unlike the other gods and goddesses I read about in other novels, these gods and goddesses just seemed to be so COLORFUL. They all had their own vibrant personalities along with unique stories. I still want to learn more about them, even though I have finished the book.

I had a bit of a love/hate relationship with Aru. I didn’t like the fact that she was just lying to all of her classmates and people she knew to try to make them “like” her. I could understand her motives, but I’ve known too many kids in real life that do this all the time to just let her off the hook. It’s a really crappy thing to do most of the time, especially when kids try to create a “sob story” to make people feel bad for them. I know that it was supposed to make her realistic, but in that case, she is a little “too realistic” for me. Eventually, once I got over this character flaw I was able to like Aru, but this did trip me up a bit at the beginning. She also does kinda receive a punishment for her actions by being “forced” to light the lamp, so that definitely helped me to get over this flaw.

I also didn’t like Mina that much. She seemed to be the typical “nerdy” sidekick, allergic to everything and having asthma. and don’t forget the bad skin and braces. As a person with allergies and former braces, and who knows people with asthma and allergies, this is just starting to be a tiring representation. Not everyone with allergies and asthma is a scrawny person who can’t go outside or do anything. Half of the time, we take tons of allergy medicines just so we DON’T have to slow down and succumb to sicknesses.  Even though I liked Mina by the end of the book, once her good qualities had been revealed, I found myself rolling my eyes once I read her original description.

Despite the fact that I couldn’t really get into the main characters, I DID enjoy the story. I want to know who the other Pandavas are, and hope that they will be revealed later in the series. Aru’s backstory was definitely interesting to read, and I want to learn more about her family in the future novels. That’s what I really felt at the end of this novel. I felt as if it was a prequel to the next few novels in the series.

I’m not sure if I would recommend this book or not. While it was interesting, I did struggle a few times as the plot seemed to drag about halfway through. Add this to my issues with the main characters, and this was a pretty average reading experience. I would definitely recommend it to middle-grade readers, but I am not sure if I would recommend it to people who are typically interested in YA and Adult books.

Overall Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars

The Blood of Olympus Review

The Blood of Olympus (The Heroes of Olympus, #5)The demigods have escaped the House of Hades, but now they must split up in order to save Camp Half-Blood and Olympus from Gaea. Nico shadow-travels with Reyna and Coach Hedge to Camp-Half Blood to bring the Athena statue back quickly. He is sick though, and their journey is definitely not easy. Even Reyna’s ancestors are against her. The rest of the team go on missions of their own, each doing their part and learning more about themselves along the way.

 

This felt like the longest book in the Heroes of Olympus series, even though it may not have been. The beginning part of the story is just a lot of traveling and POV switching. Even though each character’s name was at the start of each chapter, with the constant switching, it still got confusing and frustrating. I never got to really learn a lot about the characters, and I ended up not connecting with anyone in this entire novel.

Also, I really feel that I am tired of reading Riordan’s novels for kids with teenage characters that are simply…..lacking. These stories just don’t seem to have enough character development for me. Another issue is the action scenes. They want to be really intense, but most of them are simply just silly/funny and not actually violent or even really suspenseful. Reading it, I knew that nothing was going to actually happen to any of the characters, and I was right. It just seemed like 50-80 pages of…floundering?

I am glad that I am finally finished the Heroes of Olympus series. I think that this series was just not for me, but I am definitely proud of myself for finally finishing it. I wish that the series had truly shown the growth of the characters from children to adults, but the characters, save a few like Renya who was adult-like from the start, have remained in the immature child-like mindset. I hope that the Magnus Chase series does not end up the same way.

The world-building wasn’t that disappointing as the characters do visit several places. The pacing was also fair, as I was able to speed through this entire book in about 2-3 hours. The only thing that I keep harping on is the lack of character development in the entire series.

I would only really recommend this series to middle-grade readers, I would not recommend it to adults looking for a deep and satisfying fantasy read. Hopefully, Riordan will start to finally write books for truly adult readers. Harry Potter started off as a children’s series, but then it eventually started to have real character development, show the growth of the characters, and even more violent/mature storylines. This series stayed the same nearly the entire way through, and this disappointed me.

Overall Rating: 2/5

Fire and Bone Review

Fire and Bone (Otherborn, #1)Sage is 18 years old, homeless, and living with her best friend Ziggy on the streets of LA. When she is offered a chance to go to a party, take a hot shower, and get some free food, she takes it. This party wasn’t just a party, but it was a way for the people working with the Celtics to get their hands on her. She finds out that she is a child of a Celtic goddess, and that she must pledge her service to one of the five gods. She keeps getting sidetracked by the prince named Faelan, and she is also losing control of her fire powers.

 

When I first heard about this book, I read that it was supposed to be an older, female version of the Percy Jackson series. I had high expectations. This book didn’t exactly meet them.

I couldn’t get into this story very much. The pacing was rather strange, it felt as if it kept changing from fast to slow to fast to slow. I felt a bit connected to Sage, but I felt that there could have been a bit more character building for her. I also felt as if Faelan was kinda thrown in there for romance, but he eventually started to have an actual role in the novel. He did grow. I also wish that Ziggy had some parts in the story from her POV. This would have definitely spiced up the plot a bit in the dead areas.

The main thing that kept me going in this story was the world-building. I thought that it was amazing. The story flawlessly switched from the streets of LA to a life of opulence as a child of a goddess. I wanted to live in some of the scenes as everything was described perfectly. I feel that if the POV didn’t keep switching constantly, I would have lived in the scenes for longer, and gotten closer to both of the characters.

Overall, I think that if I hadn’t been expecting something such as Percy Jackson, I could have liked it better. I also always struggle with stories in more than one POV, which I was definitely not expecting. If you are like me in that sense, you might struggle with this book. However, if you can overlook those things and just enjoy the amazing worldbuilding and fun plot, you would enjoy this book.

I would recommend this book to anyone who is looking for a new YA fantasy read, and anyone who doesn’t mind more than one POV.

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

Overall Rating: 3/5

Top Ten Tuesdays: Favorite Diverse Reads!

Top Ten Tuesdays are a weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week is a free week so my topic will be favorite diverse reads. As an African American female author, I love to read books by diverse authors with diverse characters. Therefore, here are ten of my favorite diverse reads.

1) The Freya Snow Series

Hunt (Freya Snow, #1)

This was the most diverse fantasy series, or series in general, that I have ever read. Literally ever. Freya, the main character, is autistic and bisexual. Along the way, she meets other characters on the autism spectrum, wheelchair-bound, deaf, LGBT+, and racially diverse. That’s only naming a few of the many different characters that L.C. Mawson has in her Freya Snow series, Rebel Series, Aspects Series, and other series’. They also discuss a variety of issues, such as domestic violence, sexual assault, and racism. The storylines are amazing, and every new book has me excited to see what new characters I will meet. You absolutely HAVE to check out her books.

2) The Hate U Give

The Hate U Give

This book discusses police brutality in a fictional setting through the eyes of a sixteen-year-old African American girl named Starr, who sees her best friend shot in front of her by a cop simply for moving too quickly during a traffic stop. This book is definitely a book that I think more people should read.

3) The Leopard Child 

The Leopard Child (Kadogos #1)

I’ve never read an African fantasy novel before this one, and this one definitely set my expectations high. Kadogos doesn’t want to be the typical female that her tribe wants her to be, and she doesn’t want to go through the horrible women’s ritual. She wants to be a warrior and fight like her twin brother.

4) Orleans

Orleans

Fen lives in New Orleans, which has been cut off from the rest of the United States by a wall, following a string of strong storms that damaged some Southern states beyond repair. She has the baby of her friend who died in childbirth, and when she meets a scientist, she offers to help him in exchange for the baby to have a better life.

5) The Epic Crush of Genie Lo

The Epic Crush of Genie Lo (The Epic Crush of Genie Lo #1)
This story is Percy Jackson, but with a female main character and Chinese mythology! Genie meets a boy named Quentin Sun, and he seems determined to ruin her life. However, he tells her that he is Sun Wukong, the Monkey King, and tells her that she has powers.

6) Out of My Mind

Out of My Mind

Melody can’t walk or talk, but that doesn’t mean that she isn’t smart. She has a photographic memory, loves to go to school and listen to audiobooks, and loves her new baby sister. Yet her and her mother have to fight for her to be treated equally and for people to look past her wheelchair and see into her mind.

7) The Red Pyramid

The Red Pyramid (Kane Chronicles, #1)

This is my favorite series by Rick Riordan yet. I loved the inclusion of Egyptian mythology, and I felt like the backstory of Carter and Sadie was developed so well. Seeing them work together towards common goals throughout the whole series made the books fun and enjoyable.

8) On the Edge of Gone

On the Edge of Gone by Corinne Duyvis

This book is a dystopian thriller with an autistic main character. While the other characters of the novel have to fight to survive in the horrible conditions, Denise must fight to seem useful enough to stay on the ship. It doesn’t help that her mother abuses drugs, and so she must work twice as hard. All she wants is to be safe so that she doesn’t have to live outside, but some people are just unwilling to see past her minor quirks.

9) Children of Blood and Bone

Children of Blood and Bone (Legacy of Orïsha, #1)

Even though I haven’t read this book yet, I bought a copy and I have heard amazing things about it. I can’t wait to try it out! This year is definitely going to be a good year for fantasy novels written by POC authors.

10) Dread Nation

Dread Nation (Dread Nation, #1)

I’ve also heard great things about this book, so I went ahead and bought it when I bought COBAB. I can’t wait to get started with both!

See you all next week!

 

The Battle of the Labyrinth Review (PJO Book 4)

The Battle of the Labyrinth (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #4)

When Percy Jackson goes to her freshman orientation, he meets Rachel, a mortal who can see through the Mist, again. When he is attacked, he escapes to Camp Half-Blood with Annabeth. The usual crew, plus Tyson, must go into the Labyrinth and solve the mystery of why the monsters are coming out of it to attack the camp. The last camper to return from that mission went mad. Also, Nico has been trying to resurrect his sister, and Percy is worried about what extent he will go to in order to do so.

This story might just be my favorite Percy Jackson book yet. I’m not sure whether it was the fact that it took place in a Labyrinth or the fact that this was the only PJO book that I had not really attempted to read in the past. Just a warning, I don’t know why I read fanfiction before I finished the series, but I do know the outcome of the next book along with several of the big events in it. I am not sure if this will affect my review, but I am excited to see how the series will finish out.

This story was the most fast-paced out of all of the PJO books to me. I read two chapters last night and then managed to finish the rest of it while I was at school today. I simply could not put it down.

One of my favorite characters of this book is Calypso. Saying how she’s involved in the story would definitely be a spoiler, but her story was quite unique to me. I hope she becomes more involved later.

I also thought that Nico’s storyline of dealing with his sister’s death was important, and I hope that now he will be more involved in the stories. Well I know he will be more involved, but I hope it will happen in the next book.

Lastly, I really love Tyson in the books. Being able to bring him back and have him play an active role in the story was so special for me. He’s really grown from the Sea of Monsters, becoming such a valuable and sweet character.

Overall, the setting and the inclusion of new characters really stood out to me. I cannot wait to finish this series and be able to move onto the Heroes of Olympus!

Overall Rating: 6/5