Weekly Wrap Up: September 22nd through September 28th 2019

Clicking on titles under Books I’ve ReadNetGalley Requests,and Author/Publisher Requests will take you to Goodreads.

Clicking on titles under Books with Pending Reviews and Books with Published Reviews will take you to Amazon.

Clicking on titles Blog Tours/Excerpts/Book Blitz will take you to that specific blog post.

Clicking on links under Giveaways I’ve Entered will take you to that giveaway

Clicking on the links under Weekly Posts will take you to that specific blog post.


Books I’ve Read:

Demons at War

Shantallow

The Tattooist of Auschwitz (no review)

The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein (no review)

What Rose Forgot


Books with Pending Reviews:

The Fixer Upper—review coming September 23rd


Books with Published Reviews:

The Orchid Throne—Review Here

An Unorthodox Match—Review Here

Steel Crow Saga—Review Here

Rise of the Dragon—Review Here


NetGalley Requests:

Win Big—Random House Publishing Group – Loveswept, Loveswept

Weekend Fling—Random House Publishing Group – Loveswept, Loveswept

The God Game (SMP)


Author/Publisher/Blog Tour Review Requests:

My Best Friend’s Sister—Author Request (not on Goodreads yet)

The Glittering Hour—SMP, Thomas Dunne Books

Into the Inferno—KCS Publishing (not on Goodreads yet)

BOINK’D—French Kiss Press/Author Request


Blog Tours/Excerpts/Book Blitz:

Panic, Frenzy, Lunacy—Cover Reveal

Past This Point—Book Blitz

Fearless—Book Blitz

Tallowwood—Book Blitz

The Orchid Throne—Blog Tour

Rescuing Lord Roxwaithe—Cover Reveal

The Aquarathi Series—Book Blitz

Cabin 1—Book Blitz

Alec—Book Blitz

Night Latch—Cover Reveal

Not Suitable for Work—Book Blitz

Wrecking Christmas—Book Blitz

Angelbound and Beholder Special Edition Box Set—Book Blitz

Sinful Truth—Cover Reveal

Conjuring Wrath—Book Blitz

Fate of Imperium Box Set: Books 1-3—Book Blitz

The Fixer Upper—Blog Tour

A Little Sin—Book Blitz

Alex—Book Blitz


Giveaways I’ve Entered:


Weekly Posts:

Weekly Wrap Up

Catch Up Sunday

Top Ten Tuesday

WWW Wednesday

Theme Thursday

Blog Tour: The Orchid Throne (Forgotten Empires: Book 1) by Jeffe Kennedy

The Orchid Throne (Forgotten Empires Book 1) by [Kennedy, Jeffe]

3 Stars

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Paperback

Date of publication: September 24th, 2019

Genre: Romance, Fantasy

Series: Forgotten Empires

The Orchid Throne—Book 1

Where you can find The Orchid Throne: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

Welcome to the world of Forgotten Empires from award winning author Jeffe Kennedy that begins with The Orchid Throne.

A PRISONER OF FATE

As Queen of the island kingdom of Calanthe, Euthalia will do anything to keep her people free—and her secrets safe—from the mad tyrant who rules the mainland. Guided by a magic ring of her father’s, Lia plays the political game with the cronies the emperor sends to her island. In her heart, she knows that it’s up to her to save herself from her fate as the emperor’s bride. But in her dreams, she sees a man, one with the power to build a better world—a man whose spirit is as strong, and whose passion is as fierce as her own…

A PRINCE AMONG MEN

Conrí, former Crown Prince of Oriel, has built an army to overthrow the emperor. But he needs the fabled Abiding Ring to succeed. The ring that Euthalia holds so dear to her heart. When the two banished rulers meet face to face, neither can deny the flames of rebellion that flicker in their eyes—nor the fires of desire that draw them together. But in this broken world of shattered kingdoms, can they ever really trust each other? Can their fiery alliance defeat the shadows of evil that threaten to engulf their hearts and souls?


First Line:

The oldest records and recollections agree that it all began with the discovery of vurgsten.

The Orchid Throne by Jeffe Kennedy

My Review:

I was excited to read The Orchid Throne. When I read the blurb, I thought to myself: “I am going to like this book.” I mean, it had the two genres I love the most: Fantasy and Romance. Now that I have read The Orchid Throne, I was a bit disappointed. It fell short of my expectations.

The Orchid Throne starts slowly. It creeps along. There were several times where I wanted to swipe to the end of a chapter because it was that slow. I understand that the author was world-building but still. Once Conri and Euthalia met, the plotline got going. By the end of the book, it was moving along quite nicely. But, the slowness of the first half of the book did put me off.

I wished that I could have connected with Euthalia more. But it was hard to. A big part of me not being able to connect with her was the usage of the royal Us, Me, We (etc.) as part of her dialogue. It drove me nuts reading that. I did like the glimpses of the woman underneath the facade, though. The woman that peeked through was a tough cookie. But that was overshadowed by the games she was forced to play.

I did like Conri. I felt that he was more fleshed out than Euthalia. He was upfront and honest with his end game. He wanted to kill the Emperor. He didn’t play games or deal with court intrigue. He wanted to get there and get it done. And in no way did he want anything to do with the prophecy.

I wish that more information was given on Ambrose, Sondra, and Tertulyn. I was fascinated with Ambrose, but so little information was provided about him. He was shrewd, and everything he did was part of a grand plan. Plus, he had a crow as a familiar, which I loved. Sondra was Conri’s right hand. She was a strong woman who had been through a lot in her life. It showed both mentally and physically. I liked how she brought Conri down a peg or two during the book. Tertulyn intrigued me. I have a couple of suspicions about her, but nothing was confirmed in this book. I can’t wait to see what the next book will bring with her!!

I will say that I have never had a favorite villain before. But the Emperor Robho might be one. He doesn’t make a physical appearance in the book, but his presence was always there. He was feared and hated by Conri and Euthalia. Euthalia feared his letters. Which makes me wonder, what will he be like in person? If his letters were enough to strike dread in Euthalia, the real deal must be terrifying. And I can’t wait to read it!!!

I wish more time had been spent explaining what the Abiding Ring did and why it was so crucial that Conri gets it. There was a primary blanket reason, but I believe that Ambrose is hiding something. I did find the ring fascinating. The way it responded to Ambrose was telling. As was the way it responded to Conri.

The romance angle of the book was “meh” for me. Conri and Euthalia did have some insane chemistry. But that didn’t translate to hot sex scenes. Unfortunately, the first sex scene was awkward and uncomfortable. That set the tone for me. The rest of the sexual encounters seemed the same way for me.

I liked the fantasy angle of the book. But a lot of what was going on with Euthalia was released too late. But to keep it until the end of the book? I didn’t like that.

The end of The Orchid Throne was exciting. None of the storylines were ended. I am interested in what will go in book 2.


I would give The Orchid Throne an Adult rating. There is sex. There is language. There is violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21 read this book.

I would reread The Orchid Throne. I would recommend it to family and friends.

**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**

Weekly Wrap Up: September 15th through September 21st 2019

Clicking on titles under Books I’ve ReadNetGalley Requests,and Author/Publisher Requests will take you to Goodreads.

Clicking on titles under Books with Pending Reviews and Books with Published Reviews will take you to Amazon.

Clicking on titles Blog Tours/Excerpts/Book Blitz will take you to that specific blog post.

Clicking on links under Giveaways I’ve Entered will take you to that giveaway

Clicking on the links under Weekly Posts will take you to that specific blog post.


Books I’ve Read:

The Orchid Throne

The Fixer-Upper

The Grace Year

Rise of the Dragon

As Long As We Both Shall Live

The Wives

Nemesis

The Lost and the Scarred


Books with Pending Reviews:

The Wives—Review coming December 30th, 2019

Steel Crow Saga—Review coming September 24th


Books with Published Reviews:

As Long as We Both Shall Live—Review Here

Nemesis—Review Here

Holding On To Forever—Review here

The Lost and the Scarred—Review here


NetGalley Requests:


Author/Publisher/Blog Tour Review Requests:

The Dark Lord Clementine by Sarah Jean Horwitz (Algonquin Young Readers)

Seven Letters by J.P. Monninger (SMP)


Blog Tours/Excerpts/Book Blitz:

The Orchid Throne—Excerpt

Twisted Fates—Book Blitz

A Baby for the Bravata—Cover Reveal

The Call of Death—Cover Reveal

Nemesis—Blog Tour

Relatively Happy—Book Blitz

#Fate—Cover Reveal

Chasing Fireflies—Book Blitz

Good Grief—Book Blitz

Academy of Littles Collection—Book Blitz

A Perfect Mistake—Cover Reveal

B&E Ever After—Excerpt

One Queen of an Ending—Excerpt

Scorpion Blood—Book Blitz

Sea of Darkness—Book Blitz

Merged—Book Blitz

Wall Street Titan—Cover Reveal

Holding On To Forever—Blog Tour

Wire—Cover Reveal

Taming Demons for Beginners—Book Blitz

Dark Water—Book Blitz

Accidental Rebel—Book Blitz

Holding On To Forever—Release Blitz

Rumba—Book Blitz


Giveaways I’ve Entered:

The World That We Knew by Alice Hoffman—Goodreads


Weekly Posts:

Weekly Wrap Up

Catch Up Sunday

Top Ten Tuesday

WWW Wednesday

Theme Thursday

Excerpt: The Orchid Throne (Forgotten Empires: Book 1) by Jeffe Kennedy

Book synopsis:

A PRISONER OF FATE

As Queen of the island kingdom of Calanthe, Euthalia will do anything to keep her people free—and her secrets safe—from the mad tyrant who rules the mainland. Guided by a magic ring of her father’s, Lia plays the political game with the cronies the emperor sends to her island. In her heart, she knows that it’s up to her to save herself from her fate as the emperor’s bride. But in her dreams, she sees a man, one with the power to build a better world—a man whose spirit is as strong, and whose passion is as fierce as her own…

A PRINCE AMONG MEN

Conrí, former Crown Prince of Oriel, has built an army to overthrow the emperor. But he needs the fabled Abiding Ring to succeed. The ring that Euthalia holds so dear to her heart. When the two banished rulers meet face to face, neither can deny the flames of rebellion that flicker in their eyes—nor the fires of desire that draw them together. But in this broken world of shattered kingdoms, can they ever really trust each other? Can their fiery alliance defeat the shadows of evil that threaten to engulf their hearts and souls?


Excerpt:

“Arise, Your Highness. The realm awaits the sun of Your presence.”

The ritual words cut through the thick smoke of the nightmare, bringing me awake with a start. A bad omen that I hadn’t come out of the dreams on my own—and a sign that gave the images the power to linger in my mind, stains refusing to be scrubbed clean.

The wolf fought its chains, howling in hoarse rage, shedding fire and ash.

The sea churned, bloodred and crimson dark, bones tossed in the waves, white as foam.

The tower fell into a pile of golden rubble, then to fine sand, the grains sliding against one another with soul-grinding whispered screams.

I loathe dreaming, where I have even less control than in the waking world. Calanthe Herself sings sweetly to me of the seas, the plants, and the creatures that walk Her soil. But outside our fragile island, the abandoned lands beyond cry like frightened children in the night. I can’t help them. It’s all I can do to protect Calanthe, and most days I despair of being able to do even that.

Still, with no one else to hear them, they call to me in chaotic images, the nightmares dashing me from one dark scenario to the next. No matter how the dreams plague me, I usually wake when the light of the rising sun reddens my eyelids. I keep my eyes closed, pretending to anyone who checks on me that I’m still asleep. Pulling the pieces of my composure together, I listen to the morning song of Calanthe. The birds sitting high in the canopy to catch the first warming rays of the sun show me the sky. The fish swimming in the sea speak of clean water and plentiful food. Even the trees, the flowers, the small insects in the soil all hum to me of their lives.

All reassure me of the balance, that Calanthe, at least, is peaceful and vital.

Only I and the land I’m tied to exist in that time after sleep and before true waking, in what I call the dreamthink, an almost enchanted bubble where I belong entirely to Calanthe. The emperor does not own me. The crying lands he’s orphaned are silent. My ladies have not yet woken me to wrenching reality and the trials of the day ahead.

Dreams always seem to me a terrible price to pay for the succor of sleep. Neither my naturalists nor my physicians seem to be able to explain the purpose of such dreams. And of course, Anure killed all the wizards, so I have none to tell me if magic can answer those nighttime screams. So without answers, and like the exorbitant tithes I’m forced to send to the emperor, I do pay the price, and nightly. The dreamthink is my reward, my time with Calanthe. A gift arising from waking Ejarat of the earth welcoming the return of Her husband, Sawehl of the sun. In the dreamthink, in Calanthe’s sweet communion, I can believe the old gods are with us still, that they haven’t abandoned us. That I have reason to hope.

“Euthalia, wake up. We’re ready,” Tertulyn whispered in my ear. My first lady-in-waiting, doing her duty as always. She couldn’t know she’d woken me from the nightmare instead of the dreamthink. Or that starting my day this way meant it would be certainly cursed.

No one believes in omens or curses anymore. Or hope, for that matter. In this, too, I am alone.

Euthalia is a mouthful, but no one calls me that except for Tertulyn so it doesn’t matter. Only Emperor Anure has the rank to address me by my given name, and I avoid conversation with His Imperial Nastiness to the best of my ability. Tertulyn has called me by my name since we were children, but only when no one can overhear, as etiquette demands.

As if she’d whispered them into my ear along with my name, the concerns of the realm immediately flooded my mind. The emperor’s emissary should have returned in the night and would want an audience with me—something I’d been dreading, as he never brought good news. Rumors had spread of slave uprisings, possibly even rebellion, as unlikely as that would be, that had the emperor both angry and insecure in his power. The worst possible combination in a man like him.

If I believed a rebellion could succeed, I would rejoice in the battle to come. But I had no hope of that. No one could defy Anure’s vast power and ability to destroy the least whimper of resistance, as all those kingless and queenless lands testified, crying their hopelessness to me every night.

No, such rumors meant the Imperial Tyrant would only tighten his fist—one that already strangled us nearly to death. The prospect of worse to come made me inexpressibly weary, and I hadn’t even gotten out of bed yet.

Nevertheless, I had to face the day. A realm awaited the sun of my presence, after all.

I opened my eyes and pasted a serene smile on my lips.

Tertulyn—already wigged, gowned, and decked in fresh flowers—stood a decorous three steps back from my bed, hands folded over her heart. All equally polished and lovely as morning dew, my five junior ladies awaited in a ring around her. They’d all been up since well before dawn to dress themselves before attending me. And yet their eyes sparkled as brightly as the birds that had shown me the sun on the sea, pretty painted lips curved in delighted smiles. Though I was only twenty-six, they made me feel old.

If a witch offered me a magic potion to remove the last ten years and restore my youth—and the innocent belief I’d had then, that my life would be a good one—I’d down it without question. Even if it meant my death the next day. No, that was a lie. I would never shirk my duty to Calanthe, not even for such a fantasy. Not without an heir to take my place. No matter how old and tired I felt.


Purchase Links:

Macmillan Publishers



JEFFE KENNEDY is an award-winning, bestselling author who writes fantasy, fantasy romance, and contemporary romance. She serves on the Board of Directors for SFWA as a Director at Large. 

Her most recent works include Prisoner of the Crown and the upcoming Exile of the Seas, from her high fantasy trilogy from Rebel Base books, The Chronicles of Dasnaria, in the same world as her award-winning fantasy series The Twelve Kingdoms and The Uncharted Realms. She is a hybrid author, and also self-publishes a fantasy series, Sorcerous Moons. Her books have won the RT Reviewers’ Choice Best Fantasy Romance of 2015, been named Best Book of June 2014, and won RWA’s prestigious RITA® Award. 

She lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico, with two Maine coon cats, plentiful free-range lizards and a very handsome Doctor of Oriental Medicine.

Jeffe can be found online at her website: JeffeKennedy.com, every Sunday at the SFF Seven blog, on Facebook, on Goodreads and on Twitter @jeffekennedy.

Website

The SFF Seven Blog (on Sundays)

Twitter

Author Facebook

Author Goodreads

WWW Wednesday: September 18th, 2019

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WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Sam at Taking on a World of Wars.

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


What I am currently reading:

The Grace Year by Kim Liggett

Survive the year.

No one speaks of the grace year. It’s forbidden.

In Garner County, girls are told they have the power to lure grown men from their beds, to drive women mad with jealousy. They believe their very skin emits a powerful aphrodisiac, the potent essence of youth, of a girl on the edge of womanhood. That’s why they’re banished for their sixteenth year, to release their magic into the wild so they can return purified and ready for marriage. But not all of them will make it home alive.

Sixteen-year-old Tierney James dreams of a better life—a society that doesn’t pit friend against friend or woman against woman, but as her own grace year draws near, she quickly realizes that it’s not just the brutal elements they must fear. It’s not even the poachers in the woods, men who are waiting for a chance to grab one of the girls in order to make a fortune on the black market. Their greatest threat may very well be each other.

The Grace Year has been on my must read list for a few months. But, I kept having to put it off (real life issues). So, I was excited when I looked at my list of ARC’s to read and it was next. I read a chapter last night and can’t wait to continue reading it.

The Grace Year is currently available for pre-order. Its expected publication date is October 8th. Be on the lookout for my review after that date.


I recently finished reading:

Rise of the Dragon (The Legend Series: Book 5) by Kylie Stewart

Alexandria is now The Duchess of Avalon, Arthur’s wife and rightful queen. Love declared, promised kept, and title won. Her victory, however fleeting, will cost her dearly.

Avalon now faces the full force of what Mordred has planned for him and his knights. But what he doesn’t know is that one among them has a secret.

Will the person in hiding prove to be friend, enemy, or something else entirely?

And what happens when a ghost from the past resurfaces not as a friend, but as mortal enemy?

Rise of the Dragon is book five of The Legend Series based off of the Legends of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table.

I was disappointed when I saw that I missed out on book 4 of the series. When I started Rise of the Dragon, I felt that I was missing something. But, nonetheless, it was a good read. An excellent modern retelling of the legend of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table.

Rise of the Dragon is currently available for purchase. Be on the lookout for my review with in the next week.


What books I think I’ll read next:

What Rose Forgot by Nevada Barr

In New York Times bestselling author Nevada Barr’s gripping standalone, a grandmother in her sixties emerges from a mental fog to find she’s trapped in her worst nightmare

Rose Dennis wakes up in a hospital gown, her brain in a fog, only to discover that she’s been committed to an Alzheimer’s Unit in a nursing home. With no memory of how she ended up in this position, Rose is sure that something is very wrong. When she overhears one of the administrators saying about her that she’s “not making it through the week,” Rose is convinced that if she’s to survive, she has to get out of the nursing home. She avoids taking her medication, putting on a show for the aides, then stages her escape.

The only problem is—how does she convince anyone that she’s not actually demented? Her relatives were the ones to commit her, all the legal papers were drawn up, the authorities are on the side of the nursing home, and even she isn’t sure she sounds completely sane. But any lingering doubt Rose herself might have had is erased when a would-be killer shows up in her house in the middle of the night. Now Rose knows that someone is determined to get rid of her.

With the help of her computer hacker/recluse sister Marion, thirteen-year old granddaughter Mel, and Mel’s friend Royal, Rose begins to gather her strength and fight back—to find out who is after her and take back control of her own life. But someone out there is still determined to kill Rose, and they’re holding all the cards.

Snowfall on Cedar Trails (Sweetwater Springs: Book 3) by Annie Rains

From a USA Today bestselling author comes a heartwarming holiday romance between the a small-town florist and the handsome chief of police. Includes a bonus novel by Miranda Liasson!

Last Christmas was tough for Halona Locklear and her seven-year-old son Theo, who hasn’t spoken a word since his father’s death. This year, Halona wants nothing more than to give him a good holiday and to hear his sweet voice again. Enrolling him in the Mentor Match program might help, but when Theo gets matched with Sweetwater Springs Chief of Police, Alex Baker, Halona realizes that the handsome hero might know secrets about her past that she is determined to keep buried.

Chief of Police, Alex Baker, re-opens his father’s hit-and-run cold case every December, hoping to finally solve it. This year, his plate is full with being a Mentor Match to a young seven-year-old boy as well. His biggest obstacle, however, is fighting his attraction to the boy’s mother, Halona. As Alex gets close to solving his father’s cold case, he learns that those closest to him may be in danger — including Halona. Alex has already lost one of the most important people in his life; he isn’t about to lose her too, even if it means walking away to keep her safe.

Highland Jewel (Royal Highlander: Book 2) by May McGoldrick

The next book in the new lush Scottish historical series from USA Today bestselling author, May McGoldrick.

Maisie Murray is the picture of docility, quiet and compliant in the eyes of her family. To her activist friends, however, she’s a fearless crusader for women’s rights. In the wake of the Peterloo Massacre, Maisie and a friend found the Edinburgh Female Reform Society, and she carries the banner for universal suffrage.

Niall Campbell, a hero of the wars, a decorated officer of the Royal Highland Regiment, is battle weary and searching for stability in his life. A fierce warrior by training and a poet at heart, Niall walks away from the shining career that lies ahead of him, to the dismay of his superiors. In saving his sister when a protest turns violent, he meets Maisie. Their relationship begins as one of experience versus idealism, of scars versus hope. Soon, however, he finds in Maisie the heart he longs for.

When Niall’s sister is arrested and disappears, he quickly realizes his life is not his own, for the British authorities have a mission for him to accomplish in exchange for his sister’s freedom. Overnight, Maisie loses Niall, her friend, and her home. And the wake of the riots that sweep through the cities of Scotland, Maisie’s own sister Isabella is branded a traitor to the crown, and the family must flee to the Highlands. Here in the heart of the Highlands, Maisie runs into Niall again. He has a new name and carries a message of hope―but Niall has a task to complete―and their future rests on their ability to overcome the forces that divide them, or―for the future of Scotland―she must stop the man who owns her heart.

The Fixer Upper (Echo Springs: Book 1) by Maggie Mae Gallagher

Abby Callier is more in love with Shakespearean heroes than any real man, and she’s beginning to wonder if there is life for her outside the pages of a book. It doesn’t help that her esteemed parents tend to view her as they would one of their science experiments gone wrong. On the eve of finishing her dissertation, she escapes her staid existence to live in the house she inherited from her Great Aunt Evie in the small town of Echo Springs, Colorado. Because, let’s face it, when a woman starts comparing her life to horror films, it might be time for a break.

Sheriff Nate Barnes believes in law and order and carefully building the life you want. In his spare time, he has been remodeling his house in the hope that one day it will be filled with the family he makes. But Nate doesn’t like drama or complications and tends to avoid them at all costs. And yet, when Miss Abigail Callier, his newest neighbor, beans him with a nine iron, he can’t help but wonder if she might just be the complication he’s been searching for all along. It doesn’t hurt that he discovers a journal hidden away by the previous tenant and decides to use Old Man Turner’s advice to romance Abby into his life.

Abby never expected her next-door neighbor, the newly dubbed Sheriff Stud Muffin, to be just the distraction her world needed.

The problem is she doesn’t know whether she should make Echo Springs her home, or if this town is just a stopover point in her life’s trajectory. And she doesn’t want to tell Nate that she might not be sticking around—even though she should because it’s the right thing to do, the honest thing—because then all the scintillatingly hot kisses with the Sheriff will come to an abrupt halt. Did she mention that he’s a really great kisser?

The Orchid Throne (Forgotten Empires: Book 1) by Jeffe Kennedy

Welcome to the world of Forgotten Empires from award winning author Jeffe Kennedy that begins with The Orchid Throne.

A PRISONER OF FATE

As Queen of the island kingdom of Calanthe, Euthalia will do anything to keep her people free—and her secrets safe—from the mad tyrant who rules the mainland. Guided by a magic ring of her father’s, Lia plays the political game with the cronies the emperor sends to her island. In her heart, she knows that it’s up to her to save herself from her fate as the emperor’s bride. But in her dreams, she sees a man, one with the power to build a better world—a man whose spirit is as strong, and whose passion is as fierce as her own…

A PRINCE AMONG MEN

Conrí, former Crown Prince of Oriel, has built an army to overthrow the emperor. But he needs the fabled Abiding Ring to succeed. The ring that Euthalia holds so dear to her heart. When the two banished rulers meet face to face, neither can deny the flames of rebellion that flicker in their eyes—nor the fires of desire that draw them together. But in this broken world of shattered kingdoms, can they ever really trust each other? Can their fiery alliance defeat the shadows of evil that threaten to engulf their hearts and souls?

Amy’s Square by Dominic Schunker (not on Goodreads or Amazon yet)

Followers by Megan Angelo

An electrifying story of two ambitious friends, the dark choices they make and the profound moment that changes the meaning of privacy forever.

Orla Cadden dreams of literary success, but she’s stuck writing about movie-star hookups and influencer yoga moves. Orla has no idea how to change her life until her new roommate, Floss―a striving, wannabe A-lister―comes up with a plan for launching them both into the high-profile lives they so desperately crave. But it’s only when Orla and Floss abandon all pretense of ethics that social media responds with the most terrifying feedback of all: overwhelming success.

Thirty-five years later, in a closed California village where government-appointed celebrities live every moment of the day on camera, a woman named Marlow discovers a shattering secret about her past. Despite her massive popularity―twelve million loyal followers―Marlow dreams of fleeing the corporate sponsors who would do anything, even horrible things, to keep her on-screen. When she learns that her whole family history is a lie, Marlow finally summons the courage to run in search of the truth, no matter the risks.

Followers traces the paths of Orla, Floss and Marlow as they wind through time toward each other, and toward a cataclysmic event that sends America into lasting upheaval. At turns wry and tender, bleak and hopeful, this darkly funny story reminds us that even if we obsess over famous people we’ll never meet, what we really crave is genuine human connection.

Lethal Nights (Brute Force: Book 3) by Lora Leigh

Ilya Dragonovich is no stranger to the dark side. As a safe-house owner for security agency Brute Force, Dragon knows that the battle line between good and evil runs through the heart of every man―and, sometimes, a beautiful woman…

Emma Jane Preston needs help. After her marriage crumbled, she believed she could get back to a normal, happy life. But her ex-husband moved among some shady characters, and now she needs the kind of protection that comes at a cost―one that only someone like Dragon can provide. But can Emma Jane trust this handsome, undercover operator to keep her safe when she is in danger of falling into the arms of the deeply seductive, fiery Dragon. . .and never letting go?

Shantatown by Cara Martin and C.K. Kelly Martin

Tanvi isn’t the girl of Misha’s dreams; she’s the girl from his nightmares. She has appeared in his chilling dreams before he even meets her; when he DOES meet her, he falls for her.

Their relationship turns stormy, bordering on abusive, and takes a dramatic turn when they are held captive by a group hoping to extract money from Tanvi’s wealthy family.

But there is something more sinister at work, and the kidnappers and their victims find themselves struggling for survival as a supernatural force from Misha’s nightmares makes itself known in the real world.

Mid Year Freak Out Book Tag—July 2019

I have been seeing this come up a ton on the blogs that I follow. So I figured, why not!! So, here I go!!


Goodreads Challenge

Since I am technology impared today (I can’t get my Goodreads challenge to show up here), here are my stats:

I have read 120 books out of 250. I am 48% done with my challenge and am 7 books behind schedule. Which isn’t bad considering I had some real life challenges thrown my way!!


Best Book You’ve Read So Far in 2019

This is a hard one. I have read so many good books this year. But the winner is:

Glory Bishop by [King, Deborah L.]
click here for my review

I loved this book. It struck a nerve with me while reading it and I couldn’t stop thinking about it after I was done.


Best Sequel You’ve Read So Far in 2019

Crown Of Contempt (Novi Navarro Chronicles, #2)
click here for my review

I absolutely loved this sequel. Loved, loved, loved it!!


New Release You Haven’t Read Yet, But Want To

The Farm: A Novel by [Ramos, Joanne]

This is on my must read list. I keep seeing reviews for it on blogs I follow. As soon as I am done with my backlog, this will be the first book I read.


Most Anticipated Release of the Second Half of 2019

The Grace Year

and

The Girl the Sea Gave Back

I was psyched when I got approved for The Grace Year. I was also psyched when my wish got granted for The Girl the Sea Gave Back. Hoping that these books are as good as the blurbs make them out to me.


Biggest Disappointment:

Let's Talk About Sext (Let's Talk About Sext, #1)
Review here

Awful female main character, pushover male main character, lack of any sort of sexual attraction. Just a small bit of what disappointed me about this book. Which is sad because I had read Evie Claire’s books before and loved them.

I thought that the story itself was good. But I couldn’t get past the main characters.


Biggest Surprise

Darwin's Cipher
review here

I wasn’t expecting to like this book as much as I did. I couldn’t put the book down!!


Favorite New to You or Debut Author:

Kingdom of Exiles (The Beast Charmer, #1)
review here

I devoured this book and I can’t wait to read more from this author.

Favorite Crush:

Touch of Smoke

Owen Amir – A Touch of Smoke. He was the complete package. He was head over heels for Rikki. He also risked everything for her.


Favorite Character:

I got two from the same book:

Cruel Intentions (Rydeville High Elite #1)
my review here

Abby: She was tough as nails and didn’t back down from anyone. I loved her!!

Cam: Even though he was a jerk for most of the book, I loved him.


Book That Made You Cry:

Mrs. Everything
my review here

Book That Made You Happy:

Can't Stand the Heat? (Welcome to Otter Tail Book 2)
my review here

and

Keeping Lucy: A Novel

Book to Movie Adaptation:

Eh, I just realized that I haven’t seen any book to movie adaptations so far this year.


Favorite Blog Post of Mine:

People really seem to still be digging my review of The Sweetest Oblivion. Since I don’t do discussion posts (I would rather read), that will have to do.


Favorite Review You’ve Written This Year?

My review of Cruel Intentions. I loved that book!!!


Most Beautiful Book You Bought or Received So Far This Year?

I won these two books off of Goodreads. Which never happens, so I am excited to be showing them off…lol.

I'll Never Tell

and

Southern Sass and Killer Cravings (Marygene Brown #1)

What Books Do You Need to Read by the End of the Year?

Oh boy, that is a loaded question. So, I’ll just take a few off of my “waiting to be review pile” that haven’t been on here yet

Steel Crow Saga
Nocturne in Ashes (Riley Forte #1)
The Orchid Throne (Forgotten Empires, #1)
Followers

This is where I am supposed to tag people. But, instead, I am going to leave this open ended. Can’t wait to read everyone’s!!

Weekly Wrap Up: June 2nd through June 8th 2019

Clicking on titles under Books I’ve ReadNetGalley Haul,and Email Haul will take you to Goodreads.

Clicking on titles under Books with Pending Reviews and Books with Published Reviews will take you to Amazon.

Clicking on titles Blog Tours/Excerpts/Book Blitz will take you to that specific blog post.

Clicking on links under Giveaways I’ve Entered will take you to that giveaway

Clicking on the titles under Freebies I Scored will take you to Goodreads.

Clicking on the links under Weekly Posts will take you to that specific blog post.


Books I’ve Read:

Once Upon a Bad Boy

Cruel Intentions

Glory Bishop

28 Dates

Waltz of Crows

Books with pending reviews:

Cruel Intentions—review coming June 13th

Glory Bishop—review coming June 6th

28 Dates—review coming June 11th

Books with published reviews:

Glory Bishop—review here

Montauk—review here

The Power of Soul—review here

Crown of Contempt—review here

Waltz of the Crows—review here

The Right Sort of Man-–review here

NetGalley Haul:

How to Love a Duke in Ten Days

Highland Jewel

The Orchid Throne

Magic Heist

The Grace Year

Email Haul:

Mad Mischief: A Novel

Freebies I Scored:

Blog Tours/Excerpts/Book Blitz:

How To Love a Duke in Ten Days–Blog Tour/Excerpt (coming August 22nd and 29th)

Cruel Intentions—Book Blitz

Resilient—Book Blitz

The Orchid Throne—Blog Tour/Excerpt (coming September 19th and 26th)

Magic Heist—Blog Tour (coming July 10th)

The Right Sort of Man—Blog Tour

Giveaways I’ve Entered:

One Indecent Night—Goodreads Giveaway

Strong, Silent Cowboy—Goodreads Giveaway

Marriage of Convenience—Publisher Giveaway

Weekly Posts:

Weekly Wrap Up

Freebie Sunday

Music Monday

Top Ten Tuesday

WWW Wednesday

Throwback Thursday