The Damned Review (The Almosts #2)

The Damned: A Snowverse Novella (The Almosts, #2)It has been months since Kara killed Fiona, but she still can’t get over it. Turning to drinking and plunging herself into her work, she tries to forget the past and focus on the future. But her heart just isn’t in it anymore. Moira offers her a forgetting potion, but in order to get the potion, she must pull off one of the hardest jobs that the team has ever done. Kara can barely keep it together long enough to complete a regular mission, much less one that requires her to steal Excalibur from Demons. If she doesn’t succeed, she will have to live with the pain of being Fiona’s killer forever.

I have to say, even in this book I am personally struggling to like Kara. I have actually gotten used to looking towards the other characters at this point to try to find someone to like, as I just can’t get into Kara much. I feel bad for her though, as Steven keeps getting to her and making her ruin things. It is not right what Steven is doing, but at this point in the series, I don’t think Kara really cares what happens to her. She just wants to forget about killing Fiona and move on with her life in The Almosts.

There was definitely a lot of character development in this novel. Kara starts off being very self-destructive, and just wanting to punish herself for having to kill someone. I’m glad that she isn’t as cold-hearted as she seemed in the previous novel, just killing someone with no remorse. Nevertheless, what’s done is done, and Kara has to feel with the repercussions. She has to learn how to grieve even though the sadness was partially her fault, and she has to learn how to move forward. She struggles a lot with both.

There actually wasn’t a ton of worldbuilding in this middle novella, but there were some references to the general Snowverse that I picked up on with the demon plot.

I have to say that the plot did move a bit too quickly in this one. I was able to still pick up on the gist of things, but I didn’t find myself immersed in the universe like I usually am.

For a novella trilogy, this has been going pretty well! I hope that it will end on a strong note, and it looks like it just might from the way this novel went.

I would recommend this book to lovers of diverse fantasy.

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

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Disgraced Review (Royal Cleaner Prequel)

Disgraced (The Royal Cleaner, #0)This prequel gives Lady’ Caroline’s backstory. She was happy with her girlfriend with the Wardens, and running away from her political responsibilities. She wasn’t even the oldest of the house, so she didn’t have an obligation to stay in the House that never really accepted her. Then, her brother dies unexpectedly, and she has to leave the only place that she ever felt happy to return to the living hell that she grew up in. The people of her house are probably not even going to accept her, due to the fact that she is Litcorde.

Before I start this review, I just want to let you all know that Litcorde in the Demon world is another word for autistic. I see in other reviews that some people got confused, and so I just wanted to clear this up for you guys.

This short novella truly allows the readers to see snippets of Caroline’s life that she would rather keep hidden from everyone. It helps you to understand why she might shut herself off from others, and explains why she hates Demon politics so much. It even gives some details about her family life before she left for the Wardens.

This also gives some insight into why she is so worried about having to leave Mina, with the story arc about her ex-girlfriend.

The plot moves quickly as in any novella, but it is definitely not too fast that it is a pointless read. Even though it is shorter than LC Mawson’s full-length stories, it is not so short that it took me 15 minutes to read. I still felt that I had been spending time with real characters in another world for the time that I spent reading it.

Also, the worldbuilding is definitely astounding. Until this point, we had never really gotten to see what the Demon politics truly looked like. Caroline always wanted to avoid it, and all the characters that were in it were side characters or villains. This short story allows the readers to see how the Demon world functioned, if only for a short while.

There wasn’t as much character development as usual, as the novel focuses on the things happening in young Caroline’s life. She hadn’t done much “developing” yet. If you compare it to the Freya Snow and Royal Cleaners series, you can see how she has changed since these events happened. But if you haven’t read those books yet, it is just a small snippet of Caroline’s life being shown.

I would recommend this prequel to lovers of fantasy and to people who are currently reading the books int he Snowverse universe.

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

Overall Rating: 6 out of 5 stars

Home Review (The Royal Cleaner #2)

Home (The Royal Cleaner, #2)Caroline and Mina have been together for a few years now, and they are living comfortably. Caroline is still worrying that she is living in a fantasy and that she will end up getting Mina and her daughter hurt, or end up having to leave them. When more of the truth about Caroline’s past comes out, their relationship becomes even more strained. Caroline might have to return to the Underworld politics, and she doesn’t want to drag Mina and Diya down with her. Mina doesn’t want to leave her.

I am loving this new series so far! I have absolutely fallen in love with Caroline and Mina, and their family together. Also, I am loving how I am seeing the Freya Snow series through Lady Caroline’s eyes. It really allows you to understand characters such as Damon better, and gives more details to previous events that occurred in Snowverse.

The worldbuilding in this one was intense, as we get to see some of the reason why Caroline doesn’t want to be involved in Demon politics. It also gives more context about who is really in power in the Demon world.

The plot was fairly fast-paced, but I didn’t feel lost at all in this novel. I didn’t see any slow-downs or speed changes that would have interrupted my reading, so this was a good thing.

I can’t say too much about this novel, as I don’t want to spoil anything for potential readers, but just know that it really gets intense. I loved every minute of this novel.

Also, another thing that I can’t talk about too much is the character development. Just know that there was a lot of it, and certain characters seemed to change almost completely after this novel. One thing that isn’t too spoiler-y is that Diya’s relationship with her mother changes. Diya has grown up from the little girl she was in the last novel and is almost 10 years old, meaning that she wants more freedoms. Mina isn’t quite ready to give those to her, but she also doesn’t want Diya to feel burdened. She doesn’t want to compete with the father to the point that she just allows Diya to get away with anything she wants. This entire storyline was very interesting to read.

One other thing that I thought was funny was when Mina went on a group date with Caroline and her friends, the rest of whom are also autistic. Mina, being the only non-autistic person in the group, felt very awkward in the conversations, almost as if she didn’t know what was coming next, and she couldn’t fit in. It helped her to connect with Caroline more, and I thought that this was a sweet little addition to this great story.

The characters from the Almosts trilogy are also spoken about in this story, but everything takes place AFTER the last book in that series so it would have a lot of spoilers if you haven’t already read that one.

I would recommend this book to lovers of diverse fantasy novels.

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

Overall Rating: 6 out of 5 stars

Target Review (The Royal Cleaner #1)

BBN_REVIEW2

(Post Contains Amazon Affiliate Links)

Target (The Royal Cleaner, #1)I have taken my sweet time to get to the Royal Cleaner series, but I am kinda glad that I did. The Royal Cleaner series should definitely be read after the Almosts and somewhere around the last few books of the Freya Snow series. I love how Mawson’s books always interact with each other if they are in the same universe, but it is definitely a blessing and a curse if you are trying to avoid major spoilers.

Caroline is a Demon Royal who runs the Royal Cleaners. She is determined to keep humanity safe from the mischievous Demons and their king who seems to want humans to know about magic again. The last time that humans knew about magic, it resulted in a war, and a magical woman having to reverse time to save the world. Caroline was there, and she doesn’t want that to happen ever again.

The police have started to get unknowingly involved in the Demon cases, and Caroline knows she will have to take over the cases to save them. One detective in particular, Mina, doesn’t want to give up her case to some strange, cold woman. Caroline ends up being forced to work with her, and the last thing she needs is to fall for her on the job.

I think that this series is going to take the place of the Aspects for me while I wait for Hate and Love to get it together. I absolutely fell in love with both Caroline and Mina in this story. Caroline has been through a lot, and she doesn’t want others to get close to her. It seems to her that every person she gets close to either dies or isn’t close to her anymore. Mina is a divorcee with a child who doesn’t really give herself time to get close to anyone. Even as they are drawn together, Caroline instinctively pushes away. Humans can’t know about magic, and Mina’s entire family could be targeted by the Demons. But just like she wasn’t pushed off of her case easily, Mina won’t allow Caroline to slip away easily either.

The plot of this book moves quickly, as most LC Mawson books do, but I felt even more immersed than I usually do with her books. I also loved the character development. Caroline hasn’t trusted anyone for years, but Mina will not allow her to do this mission on her own. She has to get past her usual inability to be social, and truly work with a partner for the first time. ever.

The worldbuilding of Snowverse was also incredible. I hadn’t seen too much of Demon politics and people before, simply because the Freya Snow series didn’t focus on it. I hope that if we ever get more books from Damon’s POV, we will be able to see more of this. I wanted to learn more about Caroline’s past, where she was fully immersed in Demon culture. I didn’t get to see that much of it in this book, but I saw even more in the prequel.

I would recommend this series to anyone looking for a new f/f fantasy-romance novel with very diverse characters and an addictive storyline.

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

Overall Rating: 6 out of 5 stars

The Almosts: A Snowverse Novella Review

The Almosts: A Snowverse Novella (The Almosts, #1)As I am waiting patiently for the next Freya Snow book to come out, I am going to take some time to review a few of the novellas in the universe and read a few of L.C. Mawson’s other books.

Kara was autistic and good with computers. She is caught at a bank heist and is able to unlock the keypad without even thinking about it. Then, she is randomly fired from her job due to her past as a hacktivist in college. As she is trying to find a job, a woman comes to her house, admits that she was the one to leak the information about her past, and offers her the chance to have a more unconventional job. She will join the woman’s heist crew and go on adventures beyond her wildest dreams.

Even though it took me a bit of time to actually like Kara, I ended up wanting her and her team to succeed. I really thought that some important issues were discussed in this book. For one, it discussed the lack of women in the computer science field, and it even touched on the fact that even though autistic people may be hired for a job, they may never be truly accepted by their bosses and coworkers. Thirdly, it even touched on how the “magical seduction” sex scenes should not be glorified in books but treated as rape. If the character didn’t truly have control over themselves when they slept with them but were drawn to a character for magical reasons, they did not fully consent to the act. I wish more female authors would touch on this!

The only thing that I didn’t quite agree with was the end. I can’t really say anything because it includes major spoilers, of course. I will just say that I thought Kara was far harsher than she had to be. I hope that she won’t be like this in the other books, because I don’t like her that much now and I would hate to have to really dislike anyone in Snowverse.

The flow of this story was really smooth, and the setting was unique. I think that there could have been a little more description in certain scenes as I struggled to visualize the scenery. Nevertheless, this is a novella so I will expect some of these kinks to work themselves out once I get further into the trilogy.

I would recommend this book to anyone looking for a fantasy-action-thriller with diverse characters and a fast-paced storyline.

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

Overall Rating: 4/5