ARC Review: Amelia Unabridged by Ashley Schumacher

Title: Amelia Unabridged

Author: Ashley Schumacher

Publisher: Wednesday Books

Genre: Contemporary

Content/Trigger Warnings: Death, grief, PTSD, death of a child (off-page), drowning, car accident

Rating: ★★★★

Book Links: TBD::B&N::Amazon::Goodreads

Goodreads Synopsis

Sparks fly between two teens as they grapple with grief, love, and the future.

Eighteen-year-old Amelia Griffin is obsessed with the famous Orman Chronicles, written by the young and reclusive prodigy N. E. Endsley. They’re the books that brought her and her best friend Jenna together after Amelia’s father left and her family imploded. So when Amelia and Jenna get the opportunity to attend a book festival with Endsley in attendance, Amelia is ecstatic. It’s the perfect way to start off their last summer before college.

In a heartbeat, everything goes horribly wrong. When Jenna gets a chance to meet the author and Amelia doesn’t, the two have a blowout fight like they’ve never experienced. And before Amelia has a chance to mend things, Jenna is killed in a freak car accident. Grief-stricken, and without her best friend to guide her, Amelia questions everything she had planned for the future.

When a mysterious, rare edition of the Orman Chronicles arrives, Amelia is convinced that it somehow came from Jenna. Tracking the book to an obscure but enchanting bookstore in Michigan, Amelia is shocked to find herself face-to-face with the enigmatic and handsome N. E. Endsley himself, the reason for Amelia’s and Jenna’s fight and perhaps the clue to what Jenna wanted to tell her all along.

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ARC Review: The Paradox Hotel by Rob Hart

Title: The Paradox Hotel

Author: Rob Hart

Publisher: Ballantine Books

Genre: Science Fiction

Content/Trigger Warnings: Blood, death, grief, gun violence, absent parents

Rating: ★★★★

Book Links: Bookshop::TBD::B&N::Amazon::
Goodreads

Goodreads Synopsis

An impossible crime. A detective on the edge of madness. The future of time travel at stake.

January Cole’s job just got a whole lot harder.

Not that running security at the Paradox was ever really easy. Nothing’s simple at a hotel where the ultra-wealthy tourists arrive costumed for a dozen different time periods, all eagerly waiting to catch their “flights” to the past.

Or where proximity to the timeport makes the clocks run backward on occasion—and, rumor has it, allows ghosts to stroll the halls.

None of that compares to the corpse in room 526. The one that seems to be both there and not there. The one that somehow only January can see.

On top of that, some very important new guests have just checked in. Because the U.S. government is about to privatize time-travel technology—and the world’s most powerful people are on hand to stake their claims.

January is sure the timing isn’t a coincidence. Neither are those “accidents” that start stalking their bidders.

There’s a reason January can glimpse what others can’t. A reason why she’s the only one who can catch a killer who’s operating invisibly and in plain sight, all at once.

But her ability is also destroying her grip on reality—and as her past, present, and future collide, she finds herself confronting not just the hotel’s dark secrets but her own.

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BBNYA Winner Blog Tour: May Day by Josie Jaffrey

Hello, reader!

Because of my inability to read a schedule correctly, this is coming to you a day late. But I’m no less enthused to tell you about the stellar book that took the prize home in the 2021 Book Bloggers Book of the Year Award: May Day by Josie Jaffrey! Our winner from last year is an urban fantasy that has a lot going for it; vampires, mystery, and a kickass female lead that instantly had me rooting for her. But, before I get into my tour stop, let me tell you more about BBNYA.

BBNYA is a yearly competition where Book Bloggers from all over the world read and score books written by indie authors. If you are an author and wish to learn more about the BBNYA competition, you can visit the official website www.bbnya.com or twitter @bbnya_official.

The sign-ups are still open for the 2022 BBNYA competition, be it for authors to enter their books, or for bloggers wanting to be part of the new panel, so keep your eyes peeled!!

As a note, I received this book to read and review as part of the 2021 BBNYA tours organized by the TWR Tour team. All opinions are my own, unbiased and honest. Now, let’s get into the post!


Book Details


  • Title: May Day
  • Author: Josie Jaffrey
  • Publication date: July 9th, 2020
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Age group: Adult
  • Content/Trigger Warnings: For a list of potential content and trigger warnings, check out this book’s page on BookTriggerWarnings.com

Bookshop::TBD::B&N::Amazon::
Goodreads

Synopsis


If the murderer you’re tracking is a vampire, then you want a vampire detective. Just maybe not this one.

It’s not that Jack Valentine is bad at her job. The youngest member of Oxford’s Seekers has an impressive track record, but she also has an impressive grudge against the local baron, Killian Drake.

When a human turns up dead on May Morning, she’s determined to pin the murder on Drake. The problem is that none of the evidence points to him. Instead, it leads Jack into a web of conspiracy involving the most powerful people in the country, people to whom Jack has no access. But she knows someone who does.

To get to the truth, Jack will have to partner up with her worst enemy. As long as she can keep her cool, Drake will point her to the ringleaders, she’ll find the murderer and no one else will have to die.
Body bags on standby.

May Day is the first book in Josie Jaffrey’s Seekers series, an urban fantasy series set in Oxford, England.

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Mini Reviews: Six Stories Edition

Hello, reader!

Last year, I was participating in a readalong for a thriller series that I instantly loved: Six Stories by Matt Wesolowski. This is a series surrounding a fictional crime podcast called Six Stories. In it, the enigmatic podcast host dregs up old cases and finds six people to tell us their version of events. I wasn’t sure what to expect going into the series, but, after reading the first one, I knew I was hooked! I’ve recently finished the fourth book and realized that I never actually reviewed the first three! I’m here to remedy that today.

So, without further ado, let me share my thoughts on the first three books in the Six Stories series!


Title: Six Stories

Author: Matt Wesolowski

Genre: Thriller

CW/TW: For a list of content and trigger warnings, please check out BookTriggerWarnings.com

Rating: ★★★★

Links:
Bookshop::TBD::B&N::Amazon::
Goodreads

This is the book that introduced me to this fascinating series. For that alone, I would love it! But this book stands on its own as a great thriller, of course. Else why would I have continued on with the series?

In this first book, we are introduced to the Six Stories podcast and it’s secretive host, Scott King. The story being picked apart in the podcast is that of the discovery of a body in the Scarclaw Fell. The death was ruled as a misadventure, but there are those who wonder if there isn’t more to the story. Scott King is there to hear the stories and let the listeners come to their own conclusions.

As soon as I started reading this book, I loved the feel of it. I’m a watcher of true crime shows and this read like watching one of those felt. I was instantly invested in the story and the investigation. What I wasn’t expected and was a pleasant surprise was the absolutely creepy tale that was sprinkled within the interviews! It was like a horror story and a crime novel all mashed into one and I loved it! I also enjoyed the podcast aspect of this, though I feel it translates better in audiobook form than it does reading it physically. I have yet to try one of the audiobooks, but I really want to! Overall, I truly enjoyed this dark and creepy story and was eager to continue on with the series.

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ARC Review: Scorpica by G.R. Macallister

Title: Scorpica

Author: G.R. Macallister

Publisher: Saga Press

Genre: Fantasy

Content/Trigger Warnings: Blood, death, grief, an on-page sex scene (semi-vague), discussion of miscarriage, animal cruelty/death, alcoholism, violence, gore, child sacrifice, and execution (magical)

Rating: ★★★★

Book Links: Bookshop::TBD::B&N::Amazon::
Goodreads

Goodreads Synopsis

A centuries-long peace is shattered in a matriarchal society when a decade passes without a single girl being born in this sweeping epic fantasy that’s perfect for fans of Robin Hobb and Circe.

Five hundred years of peace between queendoms shatters when girls inexplicably stop being born. As the Drought of Girls stretches across a generation, it sets off a cascade of political and personal consequences across all five queendoms of the known world, throwing long-standing alliances into disarray as each queendom begins to turn on each other—and new threats to each nation rise from within.

Uniting the stories of women from across the queendoms, this propulsive, gripping epic fantasy follows a warrior queen who must rise from childbirth bed to fight for her life and her throne, a healer in hiding desperate to protect the secret of her daughter’s explosive power, a queen whose desperation to retain control leads her to risk using the darkest magic, a near-immortal sorcerer demigod powerful enough to remake the world for her own ends—and the generation of lastborn girls, the ones born just before the Drought, who must bear the hopes and traditions of their nations if the queendoms are to survive.

My Review


Thank you to the publisher, Wunderkind PR, and Netgalley for providing me with a free e-ARC in exchange for an honest review!

You all know how much I love a good fantasy novel. Fantasy is and will probably always be my go-to genre when I’m thinking of what to read next. I love the scale and scope that can be found inside the pages of a novel that transports you to another world. When I was offered an e-ARC of Scorpica and read the synopsis, I immediately knew I wanted to read this book. And, though it took me longer than I was expected, I savored every minute of it!

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Blog Tour: Dread Wood by Jennifer Killick

Hello, reader!

I have a blog tour post for you today! This one is featuring a spooky middle grade horror novel that is filled with creepy-crawlies: Dread Wood by Jennifer Killick! I had a great time with this fast-paced read and I can’t wait to tell you more about it.

Before we get into my review, though, I want to thank Dave @ The Write Reads  and all the crew, the publisher, Farshore, and Netgalley for providing me with a free e-book in exchange for my participation with this tour and an honest review. It is, as always, very much appreciated and all opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Alright, let’s get into it, shall we?


Book Details


  • Title: Dread Wood
  • Author: Jennifer Killick
  • Publication date: March 31st, 2022
  • Genre: Horror
  • Age group: Middle Grade
  • Content/Trigger Warnings: For a list of potential content and trigger warnings, check out this book’s page on BookTriggerWarnings.com

TBD::B&N::Amazon::
Goodreads

Synopsis


Turn the lights on. Lock the door. Things are about to get SERIOUSLY SCARY!

The brand new must-read middle-grade novel from the author of super-spooky Crater Lake. Perfect for 9+ fans of R.L.Stine’s Goosebumps

It’s basically the worst school detention ever. When classmates (but not mate-mates) Hallie, Angelo, Gustav and Naira are forced to come to school on a SATURDAY, they think things can’t get much worse. But they’re wrong. Things are about to get seriously scary.

What has dragged their teacher underground? Why do the creepy caretakers keeping humming the tune to Itsy Bitsy Spider? And what horrors lurk in the shadows, getting stronger and meaner every minute . . .? Cut off from help and in danger each time they touch the ground, the gang’s only hope is to work together. But it’s no coincidence that they’re all there on detention. Someone has been watching and plotting and is out for revenge . . .

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Mini Reviews: Recent Reads Edition

Hello, reader!

Because of who I am as a person, I am, once again, behind on reviews. I thought I’d take a moment to catch up with another edition of my mini reviews! This time, I’m focusing on three recent reads that I still need to put thought to paper (or keyboard) for since finishing them. These books are an eclectic mix, so there might be a little something for everyone here, haha.

That being said, let’s get to the reviews!


Title: Nothing But Blackened Teeth

Author: Cassandra Khaw

Publisher: Tor Nightfire

Genre: Horror

CW/TW: For a list of content and trigger warnings, please check out BookTriggerWarnings.com

Rating: ★★★

Links:
Bookshop::TBD::B&N::Amazon::
Goodreads

Well, this was certainly… a book. With words. Lots of five dollar words that seemed a tad bit unnecessary, if I’m honest.

At the heart of this story is a ghostly tale of love and betrayal. Unfortunately, the ghost story is not the focus of this novel. I say “unfortunately” because the ghost/ghost story was the best part about this book! The focus, however, is on a bunch of the most unlikeable characters I’ve come across in awhile. I’m not saying I can’t enjoy a book that has unlikeable characters, but these characters came across as caricatures of their unlikeable traits. They all fell incredibly flat for me which, when the whole book is centered around them, didn’t make for an enjoyable experience.

However, where this book shined was in the atmospheric writing and the beautifully creepy ghostly elements. There are some gruesome scenes in this book that fix themselves in your mind as you’re reading with the way they are written. Definitely check trigger warnings before getting into this one! This author has an incredible talent for building tension and setting the tone of a horror novel. As I mentioned, if we had more of that and less a bunch of horrible people being horrible to each other, I probably would have enjoyed this a lot more.

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BBNYA Finalist Blog Tour: Odriel’s Heirs by Hayley Reese Chow

Hello, reader!

I’ve got yet another blog tour for you today, this one featuring one of the 10 finalists from last year’s Book Bloggers Novel of the Year Award (BBNYA)! This YA fantasy is a quick, exciting read that had me completely wrapped in the story. It’s easy to see why Odriel’s Heirs by Hayley Reese Chow made it to the finals! But, first, let me tell you more about BBNYA.

BBNYA is a yearly competition where Book Bloggers from all over the world read and score books written by indie authors. If you are an author and wish to learn more about the BBNYA competition, you can visit the official website www.bbnya.com or twitter @bbnya_official.

The sign-ups will soon be open for the 2022 BBNYA competition, be it for authors to enter their books, or for bloggers wanting to be part of the new panel, so keep your eyes peeled!!

As a note, I received this book to read and review as part of the 2021 BBNYA tours organised by the TWR Tour team. All opinions are my own, unbiased and honest. Now, let’s get into the post!


Book Details


  • Title: Odriel’s Heirs
  • Author: Hayley Reese Chow
  • Publication date: March 1st, 2020
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Age group: Young Adult
  • Content/Trigger Warnings: For a list of potential content and trigger warnings, check out this book’s page on BookTriggerWarnings.com

B&N::Amazon::Goodreads

Synopsis


The brave, burning with fire, harnessed the Dragon’s Rage….

As the Dragon Heir, seventeen-year-old Kaia inherited the power of flame to protect her homeland from a godlike necromancer’s undead army. But after centuries of peace, the necromancer has faded to myth, and the Dragon Heir is feared by the people. Persecuted and cast out, Kaia struggles to embrace and control her seemingly useless gift while confined to her family’s farm.

But when the necromancer’s undead terrorize the land once again, Kaia runs away to join the battle.

With the help of her childhood rival, the handsome Shadow Heir, and a snarky, cursed cat, Kaia must figure out how to control both her fire and her confidence in time to save Okarria. If she fails, she will sacrifice her family, her new friends, and the enchanting world she has only just begun to see.

And time is running out.

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Blog Tour: Anne of West Philly by Ivy Noelle Weir/Illustrated by Myisha Haynes

Hello, reader!

Today is my stop on the TBR & Beyond Tours book tour for a middle grade graphic novel that absolutely captured my heart: Anne of West Philly by Ivy Noelle Weir (author) and Myisha Haynes (illustrator)! This book is a graphic retelling of Anne of Green Gables set in modern day West Philly and it is an absolute delight.

Before I start gushing about this book, though, I want to thank some folks. First, I want to thank the team at TBR & Beyond Tours for letting me be a part of this tour. Second, I want to thank the publisher, Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, for sending me a free copy of the book in exchange for my participation and an honest review. It is very much appreciated! One last thing; mine is just one stop on this magical mystery tour, so make sure you check out the other fabulous bloggers and bookstagrammers that will be celebrating this beautiful book! You can find the full schedule here.

Alright, let’s get to the post!


Book Details


  • Title: Anne of West Philly
  • Author: Ivy Noelle Weir
  • Illustrator: Myisha Haynes
  • Publication date: March 1st, 2022
  • Genre: Contemporary Graphic Novel
  • Age group: Middle Grade

Bookshop::TBD::B&N::Indigo::
Amazon::Goodreads

Synopsis


Anne of Green Gables with a twist: in this follow-up to Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy and The Secret Garden on 81st Street, this full-color graphic novel moves Anne Shirley to modern-day West Philadelphia, where where she finds new friends, new rivals, and a new family.

When Marilla and Matthew Cuthbert decide to foster a teenage girl for the first time, their lives are changed forever. Their redheaded foster daughter, Anne Shirley, is in search of an exciting life and has decided that West Philly is where she’s going to find it. Armed with a big personality and unstoppable creativity, Anne takes her new home by storm as she joins the robotics club, makes new friends in Diana and Gilbert, experiences first love, and turns the ordinary into the extraordinary. But as Anne starts to get comfortable, she discovers one thing she wasn’t looking for: a family.

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Blog Tour: Undercover Princess by Connie Glynn

Hello, reader!

Back at you again with a fresh new The Write Reads blog tour! It should be very obvious that I just can’t say no to Dave @ The Write Reads at this point 😂 Honestly, though, when I heard the premise of this story, I couldn’t help but sign up. Today, I’m featuring a book all about rebellious princesses and striving to be the person you want to be in a world that would tear you down for it. It’s an incredible YA fantasy called Undercover Princess by Connie Glynn!

I’m excited to participating in this unique blog tour as this post is a lead up to another I’ll be making later that highlights the fifth book in the Rosewood Chronicles, Princess Ever After. Having never read any of this series, but want to join in on the tour, I signed up to give this book a read and I’m very glad that I did! Before we get into my review, though, I want to thank all the crew at The Write Reads, the publisher, Penguin, and Netgalley for providing me with a free e-book in exchange for my participation with this tour and an honest review. It is, as always, very much appreciated.

Alright, now let’s get to the tour stop post!


Book Details


  • Title: Undercover Princess
  • Author: Connie Glynn
  • Series: The Rosewood Chronicles #1
  • Publication date: November 2nd, 2017
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Age group: Young Adult
  • Content/Trigger Warnings: For a list of potential content and trigger warnings, check out this book’s page on BookTriggerWarnings.com

Bookshop::TBD::B&N::Amazon::
Goodreads

Synopsis


When fairy tale obsessed Lottie Pumpkin starts at the infamous Rosewood Hall, she is not expecting to share a room with the Crown Princess of Maradova, Ellie Wolf. Due to a series of lies and coincidences, 14-year-old Lottie finds herself pretending to be the princess so that Ellie can live a more normal teenage life.

Lottie is thrust into the real world of royalty – a world filled with secrets, intrigue and betrayal. She must do everything she can to help Ellie keep her secret, but with school, the looming Maradovian ball and the mysterious new boy Jamie, she’ll soon discover that reality doesn’t always have the happily ever after you’d expect…

A thrilling world of parties, politics and bad ass princesses, this is the first book in the brand new series THE ROSEWOOD CHRONICLES.

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