The Wolf’s Pursuit (London Fairy Tales #3) by Rachel Van Dyken

The wolfs pursuitBlurb: What happens when one is both Hunter and Wolf?
You know it’s going to be a bad day when you get shot at—twice. Hunter Wolfsbane, Duke of Haverstone, also known as “Wolf” is having exactly one of those days. Things take a turn for the worse when he’s notified that he’ll be acquiring a partner for his newest mission. The rub? He’s kissed her—twice. In his defense, she was already ruined, but it didn’t help matters that she was the sister-in-law to his best friend in the world.

And how does a woman protect her heart from one who has the power to destroy every-thing she holds dear?
Lady Gwendolyn has only one thing on her mind–Finding the Wolf and strangling him where he stands. Unfortunately, she needs him to complete one final mission for the Crown and to keep her family safe. It has absolutely nothing to do with her attraction to him, or his golden eyes, or his wicked smile, or the fact that he’s convinced to keep his heart encased in ice—that is, if he still possesses one.

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Favorite quote: 

It’s easier to believe you’re a failure. So much easier than trying to wrap your mind around the simple truth or perhaps the idea that you are so much more than you choose to be.

4 stars

Another great story in this series.  I’ve been waiting for this one cause I had a feeling it would be my favorite and I was right.  I do love the Little Red Riding Hood re-tellings.

I loved Red’s spunk.  She wasn’t afraid to challenge cultural norms in this era and used her sex to her advantage in her missions.  Her loyalty to her country is steadfast and strong. She just had such a great depth of character.

The wolf was exactly what you expect.  He liked her, obviously, but he resisted temptation and the chance at a happiness because of fear.  He was incredibly vulnerable emotionally but physically strong, a compelling contrast in a historical romance. His loyalty was worth more than anything to him, you will see what I mean when you read the book.

The third book in this series can be read as a stand alone.  They are parallel stories about sisters.

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98: The Witch’s Prophecy (Rise of the Battle-Bred #2) by V.L. Holt

98Blurb: In this clean YA paranormal romance, William and Jane learn the steps to their new friendship while forces around them are converging on Deer Fjord to create a battleground of historic proportions. William and his father are under suspicion of murder and Jane is recovering from a Lochspawn attack.

Woven throughout this urban adventure is Agnes’ life story, written in her own words. Agnes is one of the First Mothers, a child of the Middle Ages and a devoted Christian. Details about the creation of the Warrior race finally come to light in her heartrending history.

 

 

 

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4 stars

This book definitely raised questions that need to be answered in the third book. It’s been so long since I read the first one that I was a bit confused reading it. But I caught up pretty quickly.

Not a lot of action in this book, actually, almost no action.  This book gives us loads of flashbacks and backstory.  I gotta say the backstory was exceptionally interesting to me.  I loved the way it was told through Agnes journal.  She had a third eye when it came to people and could see right into their hearts.  She was guarded but not afraid, headstrong but not foolish.  By far my favorite character to date in this series.

Jane and Williams relationship seems to stagnate a bit in this book since they don’t really see much of each other, so the romance suffered in my eyes.

We do get to see more of the Z guys as I like to call them.  Whether or not they are the big bad isn’t really made clear to us, at least to me it wasn’t.  It was clear they had an alterior agenda but we didn’t really see them being straight up evil.  It’s all implied at this point.

I am anticipating the third installment in this series. I do need to say I think this book ended rather abruptly and with no real closure for me, but from what I remember, the first book was like that as well.

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Savant by Nik Abnett

SavantBlurb: His mind can save the world, if she can save him from the human race…

The Shield is Earth’s only defence. Rendering the planet invisible from space, it keeps humanity safe from alien invasion. The Actives maintain the shield – no one is sure how – but without them, the Shield cannot function.

When an Active called Tobe finds himself caught in a probability loop, the Shield is compromised. Soon, Tobe’s malady spreads among the Active. Earth becomes vulnerable.

Tobe’s assistant, Metoo, is only interested in his wellbeing. Earth security’s paramount concern is the preservation of the Shield. As Metoo strives to prevent Tobe’s masters from undermining his fragile equilibrium, the global danger escalates.

The Shield must be maintained at all costs…

Available for Pre-order on Amazon

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DNF at 10%

I know, I know, that’s hardly a start before quitting but I just couldn’t get into it.  I tried to make myself and that took the fun out of reading right there.  Add to the fact that I couldn’t really understand what was happening and it’s a recipe for disaster.  There was no context or backstory.  How am I supposed to know what the heck a Service is?  I think the author expected the reader to understand as we read it. You know, sometimes that happens when world building when things are understood through context.  That didn’t happen here.

It was all very dry with lots of linear descriptions. There is no emotion, and nothing happened that was of interest, its like a daily journal of what happened, just facts. It was like reading stereo instructions, just blah.

NetgalleyIt’s a shame really since I got this book through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review but, can’t please us all.

 

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Top Ten Books That Have Been On My TBR From Before I Started Blogging That I STILL Haven’t Read Yet

Top Ten Tuesday
(Images link to Goodreads, Titles link to Amazon)

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish in which you make a list of ten to do with a certain topic.  This week’s topic is “Ten Books That Have Been On Your Shelf (Or TBR) From Before You Started Blogging That You STILL Haven’t Read Yet (this is going to be sad considering how many of those I have unread six years later…).”

Lenoreo’s Top Ten:

ROFL, since we only just started our blog less than a year ago, this is the easiest top ten ever.  Because trust me, I have a huge TBR list.  So I started with my oldest books that stand out to me as ones I’m most disappointed that I still haven’t read yet.  And then to make picking easier, I discovered most of those are the next books in series, so I ran with it.  All of these books have been on my TBR on Goodreads since 2012 or earlier.

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  1. Enchant by Penelope Fletcher (previously titled Demon Dark) — Book 3 in the Rae Wilder series.  I remember LOVING this series, so I have no idea why I haven’t finished it yet.  (I do miss the original titles and covers, they were spectacular.  I had to grab this cover from Amazon, b/c Goodreads doesn’t even have this one in its list of editions).
  2. Love Unrehearsed by Tina Reber — Book 2 in the Love series that I waited forever to go on sale, and finally snagged last year!  Hmmm…I wonder if that means it hasn’t been on my TBR for as long if it was technically on my wishlist for most of that time.  Oh well, my list, my rules.  Damn, I hate making these lists, they always make me want to rearrange my reading priorities.
  3. Zane’s Redemption by Tina Folsom — Book 5 in the Scanguards Vampires series.  Another series I loved but haven’t gotten back to.  Really should do that.
  4. Stealing Parker by Miranda Kenneally — Book 2 in the Hundred Oaks series.  Really need to read so many in this series.  It doesn’t feel as pressing though, as they are interconnected standalones.
  5. World After by Susan Ee — Book 2 in the Penryn & the End of Days series.  This is one of those series that I have on my plan to finish in 2016.  Fingers crossed it actually happens.
  6. Uncontrollable by S.R. Johannes — Book 2 in the Nature of Grace series.  And in making this list I discovered that this is a trilogy!  ROFL.  But at least it’s finished.  And the first book was so unique and unusual, I really enjoyed it.
  7. Incendiary by Amy A. Bartol — Book 4 in the Premonition series.  I actually started rereading this series earlier in the year in the hopes of finishing it, but it wasn’t quite holding my attention as much as I’d hoped and I had other books that took priority. I still have high hopes that it will be a series I finish in 2016.
  8. Thomas & January by Fisher Amelie — Book 2 in the Sleepless series.  Another series that doesn’t feel as pressing because it’s an interconnected standalone, but I did absolutely ADORE Callum & Harper, so I’m eager to see if I enjoy this one as much.
  9. Immortal Grave by Nichole Chase — Book 3 in the Dark Betrayal Trilogy.  I don’t know how I stand not knowing how series end, but I think they just get lost in the shuffle, you know?
  10. The Crown of Embers by Rae Carson — Book 2 in the Girl of Fire and Thorns series.  OK, this amuses me to no end.  Because just a few weeks ago we had a TTT where I lamented about wanting the box set for this series, but it turns out I have 2 of the 3 books already…so I probably don’t actually need the box set so much as the expensive 3rd book.  Although the box set did include some novellas…  I just can’t believe I forgot that I already owned this book.  Sometimes I wonder about myself.

And that’s just a tip of the iceberg for me!  I really need to start hacking away at my backlist, it becomes embarrassing when you can’t even remember buying some of the books on there.  How about you guys?  What books have been on your TBR since before you became a blogger (or if you’re not a blogger, for a LONG LONG time)?  I’m dealing with some personal stuff right now, so I may not be able to spread the love, but please share links to your TTTs just in case I find time (and for other readers to come check you out!).

Beyond the Stars by Stacy Wise

Blurb:
25272714Falling for him wasn’t in the plans…

Most girls would kill for the opportunity to work for Jack McAlister, Hollywood’s hottest actor, but twenty-one-year-old Jessica Beckett is ready to kick him out of her red Ford Fiesta and never look back. She should be spending her junior year in France, eating pastries and sharpening her foreign language skills. Instead she’s reluctantly working as Jack’s personal assistant, thanks to her powerhouse talent agent aunt.

Jack is private, prickly, and downright condescending. Jessica pushes his buttons—she’s not the type of girl to swoon over celebrity heartthrobs, precisely why her aunt thought she’d be perfect for the job—and Jack pushes right back.

But as she begins to peel away his layers, Jessica is shocked to find she craves her boss’s easy smile and sexy blue eyes. The problem is, so does the entire female population. And what started out as the job from hell soon has Jess wondering if a guy like Jack could ever find love with a regular girl like her.

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My Review:
3 stars — OK, I will admit…I was a bit disappointed.  I’m a sucker for hollywood star falls for normal girl books, I know many of us are.  Strangely enough while I’m a sucker for this trope, I find I’m rarely satisfied with the books who attempt them.  Ah well.  At least I scored this book on sale.

So what went wrong?  I had a hard time liking Jess.  I’m not sure what it was.  She felt a bit immature for the age she supposedly was, but then again, so am I…  Normally I don’t have a problem with that, but maybe I did moreso in this case b/c I had a hard time getting a feel for Jack’s age and he didn’t feel as young, you know?  So I didn’t see a fit between them.  Honestly I felt like she fit Shawn (the trainer) more.

Anyways, back to Jess.  I guess I just didn’t like her attitude.  We didn’t really get a super great feel for what happened in her past to make her to anti-actor, so she just seemed kind of…well, dickish about it all.  She had all these assumptions about Jack that weren’t based on anything but one bad experience, that again…happened in the past, so we didn’t get to feel it with her and it didn’t make me sympathize with her.  And her friendship with Meg really reflected badly on her.  Meg was awful.  And the fact that she needed another friend to point it out to her was kind of crazy.  I guess I can sort of see how you grow up with a person and so you make excuses for them, but Meg was really overboard awful and we never did find out why…  I think b/c she *was* a friend of Jess’s, I would have liked to know why she changed.  Otherwise I didn’t see her purpose in the story, other than the further the housing situation plot and add some drama.

I enjoyed Jack.  I wish I saw more from him.  He was extremely hard to get a read on because we didn’t get his POV, which is fine…but without more conversations between Jess and Jack, I really don’t know much about what he’s like.  It was mostly a Jess book.  And quite honestly this just made for a very shallow and unfulfilling romance for me.  And it wasn’t because it was a PG romance (I don’t mind those), it was that it took the whole book, and I really didn’t get enough out of the development as I would have liked.  I felt a few butterflies and tingles, but again…it wasn’t until 80-90% before anything really happened there.  And since I wasn’t really enjoying Jess’s individual development, I just didn’t get enough out of this book.

So yeah.  3 stars isn’t a horrible book.  I was entertained.  I was just ultimately unfulfilled.

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Pretending With the Greek Billionaire by Kira Archer

Blurb:
30741416.jpgAlways the life of the party, Luca Vasilakis needs to prove he’s capable of taking over his father’s billion-dollar corporation. The perfect opportunity falls in his arms in the form of the reserved but sexy social worker Constance McMurty. What better way to improve his reputation than to get engaged to a do-gooder who is raising six orphans?

Constance wants nothing to do with Luca. But a poorly timed paparazzi photo lands her in the middle of a media nightmare, and Luca is her only way out. He proposes an idea that will help them both—be his fiancée to gain him some respectability and he’ll make a huge donation to her organization…and save her reputation.

But when their lie starts feeling like the truth, and the chemistry just won’t stop, they have a hard time separating what’s real and what’s fantasy…

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My Review:
3.5 stars — I received a free copy through NetGalley in exchange for an honest and unbiased review/opinion.

I am a self-confessed Harlequin book lover.  Before the days of my Kindle and my discovery of Indie authors (b/c I’ve always been an underdog kind of girl, so Indie books are right up my alley), I used to consume Harlequin books at an ALARMING rate.  Cheap books individually, but with the number of books I read it was an expensive habit.  And one of my favourite lines was the Harlequin Presents line…so this is a LONG introduction paragraph to say that this book reminded me so much of the books I used to read in that line — European Billionaire Playboy?  Check.  And so I totally requested this book with that kind of nostalgia in mind.  And it definitely fulfilled what I was looking for from that.

I loved the chemistry between Luca and Constance.  It was a very sexy book, and they definitely had a palpable connection.  And the progression of the romance was exactly what I was expecting, and I’m ok with that.  It definitely followed a pattern that I’m used to, so there weren’t any surprises, but again, sometimes I want a book that gives me exactly what I’m expecting…  A bit tropey, definitely, but I wanted that push and pull between a hero and heroine that don’t really fit together, but somehow bring out the best in one another.

It would have been a full 4 stars if it weren’t for the completely useless children characters.  I honestly don’t know why Ms. Archer even bothered with 6 foster children in this story, they really only focused on the one girl throughout the story, and it was like they barely interacted with the other girls…they had the other people taking care of them.  It just felt like a plot device, but it didn’t really add anything of substance to the story.  The author really could have done a bit more with that storyline, or else just had the one orphan girl or something.  I was disappointed.

So all in all, a great light romance read.  Definitely what I was needing in this moment.

The Boyfriend Bet by Chris Cannon

Blurb:
31058127.jpgDisclaimer: This Entangled Teen Crush book contains multiple PDAs, after-school detentions, and gambling on the side. Warning: betting on a boyfriend is bad for your health.

Zoe Cain knows that Grant Evertide is way out of her league. So naturally, she kisses him. Out of spite. Not only is Grant her brother’s number-one nemesis, but he has zero interest in being tied down to one girl. She’s shocked—and secretly thrilled—when they start spending more time together. Non-exclusively, of course, but that doesn’t mean Zoe can’t change his mind, one PDA and after-school detention at a time.

Zoe’s brother claims Grant is trying to make her his “Ringer,” an oh-so-charming tradition where a popular guy dates a non-popular girl until he hooks up with her, then dumps her. Zoe threatens to neuter Grant with hedge clippers if he’s lying but Grant swears he isn’t trying to trick her. Still, that doesn’t mean Grant is the commitment type—even if winning a bet is on the line.

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My Review:
3.5 stars — I received a free copy through NetGalley in exchange for an honest and unbiased review/opinion.

Well…huh…  So I started this book and I was just thrilled!!  I was LOVING it!  I thought Zoe was so sassy and snarky, and I loved the bantering interplay between her and Grant.  Honestly I was smiling and laughing all the time.  I know Zoe was a bit dramatic, but honestly I just thought she had a bit of a temper and was a bit over the top.  She and her BFF Delia was so much fun.

But somewhere along the way it started to lose a little bit of the sparkle.  Honestly, Grant was not book boyfriend material.  We got less and less of his POVs as the book went on, and quite frankly he just never seemed that enamoured with Zoe.  It was like he was intrigued, but he kept weighing pros and cons about being with her, but there was no overall excitement, or just *want* to be with her.  I never felt it.  I enjoyed it in the beginning a bit more, but I expected things to develop, and for him to be maybe confused b/c he didn’t want a girlfriend, but Zoe made him feel differently.  I just didn’t get that at all.

And while Zoe’s reactions were a bit over the top, quite frankly I got why she was upset in so many of the instances…she just liked being dramatic in her reactions, but the base reason for being upset was valid in my opinion.  And so I was not impressed with how the last bit played out where Grant accused her of not trusting him, even though he hadn’t earned that trust through past experiences, and she ended up being the one to apologize and make amends.  Did NOT work for me.

And then the end just wrapped up super fast, I didn’t buy their relationship development at ALL, I didn’t even buy that Grant wanted to be with Zoe.  And quite frankly, I thought Zoe could do better.  So my reading experience went from a 4 to a 3.5 rounded up to 4, to a me being generous and still giving it 3.5 but rounding down to 3.  Major bummer b/c it started off SO well.

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Top Ten Books With Dystopian/Post-Apocalyptic Setting

Top Ten Tuesday
(Images link to Goodreads, Titles link to Amazon)

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish in which you make a list of ten to do with a certain topic.  This week’s topic is “Top Ten Books With X Setting (top ten books set near the beach, top ten book set in boarding school, top ten books set in England, etc).”  Curly Carla says “I’m choosing dystopian/post-apocalyptic because that’s the only setting that I will have more than a few books in.”

Curly Carla’s Top Ten:

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  1. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.  One of my all-time favorite books.  It’s one that really got me into reading again as an adult.
  2. Love and Decay by Rachel Higginson.  This series ya’ll.  It’s so good!  It’s written like it’s a TV series.  With three seasons and about 12 episodes each.  I’ve reread it three times.  The first six episodes are free in a set.  Check it out.
  3. Mercury Striking by Rebecca Zanetti.  This series is one I recently read and I have really liked it so far.  Great action and love scenes.
  4. The Beautiful Dead by Daryl Banner.  This book had a separate layer that added a bit of melancholy to it. It seemed to be a bit introspective.  One of the reasons I loved it so much.
  5. Uglies by Scott Westerfield. This is one of my favorite books. I highly recommend it to every female out there.
  6. Red Rising by Peirce Brown.  This book was phenomenal; I read it as part of last year’s reading challenge and was surprised it was his first book.
  7. Broken Skies by Theresa Kay.  This book will always make a top ten list if I can squeeze it in there.  Great series.
  8. Delirium by Lauren Oliver.  I really liked the basis for this story.  It was very interesting to think about as I read.
  9. Justice Buried by Hilary Thompson.  This is definitely a diamond in the rough. I discovered this author in a writing group I’m a part of.  This series is a good one. It’s free right now and it only has 44 reviews.  Go grab it!
  10. Imaginations by Tara Brown.  I love Tara Brown.  She has many end names but this is the one I like best because she writes the most amazing storylines that really make you think.

Daring the Bad Boy by Monica Murphy

Blurb:
31357008Truth or Dare was never this much fun…

Annie McFarland is sick of being a shy nobody. A session at summer camp seems like the perfect opportunity to reinvent herself—gain some confidence, kiss a boy, be whoever she wants to be. A few days in, she’s already set her sights on über-hottie Kyle. Too bad her fear of water keeps her away from the lake, where Kyle is always hanging out.

Jacob Fazio is at Camp Pine Ridge after one too many screw-ups. Junior counseling seems like punishment enough, but the rigid no-fraternizing-with-campers rules harsh his chill. When a night of Truth or Dare gets him roped into teaching Annie how to swim, she begs him to also teach her how to snag Kyle.

Late-night swim sessions turn into late-night kissing sessions…but there’s more on the line than just their hearts. If they get caught, Jake’s headed straight to juvie, but Annie’s more than ready to dare him to reveal the truth.

Disclaimer: This Entangled Teen Crush book contains references to drinking, sexual situations, adult language, and an intense bad boy hero who will meltyour heart.

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My Review:
3 stars — I received a free copy through NetGalley in exchange for an honest and unbiased review/opinion.

This was a cute summer read.  It was probably more of a 3.5 star read for most of the book, but like many other reviewers I saw, I was not impressed with Annie’s actions near the end of the book and felt like they didn’t necessarily fit her character from what I could tell.  So while it turned out ok, it made me like Annie a little less, and so I dropped it a half star.

I enjoyed Annie…sometimes she confused me a little.  She was supposed to be really shy, and trying to turn over a new leaf at camp, but I just can’t see that being easy to do (as someone who is shy as well).  I wish I’d seen more internal struggle…sometimes her boldness seemed out of place, and I wish she’d been freaking out a bit more inside, or working up that courage or something.  I also didn’t always get her water fears…we didn’t find out the cause til near the end, so it didn’t quite have the same emotional impact.  And that she would jump in the water those few brave times felt weird to me…but maybe I just don’t understand all the ways a phobia works for different people.  She was pretty authentically 16 though…held on to the crush of Kyle longer than *I* would have liked, but that wanting to have the movie/book experience of being with the popular guy clouded her to actually what he was like.

I probably enjoyed Jake more than Annie, but still felt like his struggles were more cliche and not fleshed out to the individual that is Jake.  Like he actually tells us that he was acting out for attention…do teens doing that know that’s why they’re doing that?  Maybe they do.  What do I know?  It just felt like I didn’t always believe it.  Sometimes he had great character development though, like when he was missing his Dad and stuff…  I also felt like Juvie was harsh for a first time offender stealing hubcaps, but honestly maybe I don’t understand the legal ramifications and should just trust the author to have done her research.  So I didn’t always feel like the consequences of his actions were reasonable.  He wasn’t quite the bad boy I was expecting, but I enjoyed him and his romantic ways, so I’m ok with it.

The romance was pretty sweet.  They had some adorable moments together.  I didn’t feel is super hard, but it was there.  Great epilogue too.

I wasn’t that keen on the girls in Annie’s cabin.  Sometimes they seemed like mean girls, and then all of a sudden Annie’s like “oh, they’re great!”  I saw it with some of the girls, but definitely not all.  Didn’t really get them.  Maybe it’s been too long since I was a teen girl.

So yeah, it was kind of shallow for me basically.  Light summer read, but I wanted a bit more.  I had more written, but apparently my draft didn’t save and I lost this last paragraph.  😛

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Deja Revu August 14th, 2016

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Déjà Revu is a weekly review round-up that is open to all book review blogs.
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Contemporary

Fantasy

Paranormal

 

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Romance

Woman’s Fiction

 

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Contemporary

Paranormal

Romance

Science Fiction

Suspense/Thriller

Woman’s Fiction

 

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Woman’s Fiction