Saturday, December 31, 2011

News - Book Releases for Week 1 (Jan 1st - 7th)

Review - Head Rush (The Disillusionists, Book 3) by Carolyn Crane (5/5 stars)

Reading level: Adult
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Size: 475 KB
Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd
Release Date: December 6, 2011
Stand Alone or Series: 3rd in Disillusionists Trilogy
Source: Bought for Kindle
Rating: 5/5 stars

This is the third book in the Disillusionists trilogy by Crane. The second book ended on a total cliffhanger and then when Crane's publisher dropped the series I almost died of suspense. I was so happy to see the third book finally published and what an awesome third book it is.

Justine is in nursing school now and working on her wedding plans to Otto. She doesn't remember most of what happened at the end of Book 2. She thinks Packard killed Avery. But there are inconsistencies. Where did her car go? Why does she flinch every time Otto reaches for his breast pocket? Why does she panic when she thinks about Packard in danger? Justine has to figure out what happened to her, she has to stop Otto from taking over the city, she has to deal with her debilitating hypochondria, and she has to do it all before she gets married. Otto has said that everything will change after their wedding and for some reason Justine thinks that it won't be a change for the better.

I pretty much love this series. It is just so darn interesting and creative; just the idea of using mental disorders as magical weapons is awesome. Otto and Justine appear to be a sweet couple to those outside but their relationship is revealed as quite disturbing to the reader. They are both totally co-dependent on each other and they both feed each others fear of Vein Star Syndrome. Basically they are both perfect for each other and absolutely horrible for each other.

Justine really grows as a character and overcomes some huge obstacles in this book. We also get to meet Justine's germ-fearing father, bringing more insight into how Justine got as crazy as she is. Packard is an absolutely wonderful character; his trust in Justine and certainty that she will figure out she's been revised is absolutely wonderful. I am not going to go into what happens in the story much because I don't want to reveal any surprises but the story takes a number of wonderful twists and turns.

I love how Crane changes the way the Disillusionists act based on how long ago they zinged someone. You can tell when Shelby is deep in despair or when she's zinged that despair into someone else, she's like a different person. The fact that these small changes in personality are consistently displayed so accurately says a ton about Crane's writing ability.

Everything wraps up beautifully and leaves the reader feeling good. This is just an absolutely perfect ending to this series.

Overall I pretty much adored this book. Everything is wrapped in a way that is surprising and interesting yet very satisfying. The characterization is awesome and plot is full of surprising twists and turns. I was absolutely drawn into this book and couldn't put it down. Now the next question is what will Crane be doing next? I recommend this for urban fantasy lovers who like some psychological thriller and mystery in their urban fantasy. This is a great urban fantasy series that is just completely different from anything else out there.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Review - Cast in Ruin (Chronicles of Elantra, Book 7) by Michelle Sagara (3/5 stars)

Reading level: Adult
Genre: Fantasy
Size: 464 pages
Publisher: Luna
Release Date: September 20, 2011
ISBN: 978-0373803309
Stand Alone or Series: 7th book in the Chronicles of Elantra
Source: Borrowed through library
Rating: 3/5 stars

This is the seventh book in the Chronicles of Elantra by Sagara. I had very mixed feelings about this book. The beginning of this book was slow moving and confusing, but the ending was very interesting. This series just moves so slowly I am really starting to question what direction it is heading in.

Kaylin is still struggling to balance her life. Between her duties as a Hawk, etiquette and magic lessons with dragons, and assisting the midwifes she has a full plate. Then Sanabalis requests her presence in the new dragon fief; there are murders happening there...strange thing is that it is the same woman is being murdered. Her body is turning up murdered over and over. Then with the arrival of a new stranger called the Ascendant things get even stranger. Kaylin is drawn into it all and has to solve the murders before things get even worse for Elantra.

I felt like Kaylin is running around frantic in this book, she never gets a break. She never gets to sleep or eat or have a teeny bit of down time. There isn't a ton of Nightshade in this book, he's in the story just a tiny bit. Kaylin also doesn't spend any time with her midwife duties. Severn remains Kaylin's shadow; he kind of chases her around and keeps her out of trouble. I really wish Severn was developed more as a character.

All the above aside, the dragons do have some interesting character development. You learn a lot about the Arkon's past and he is in the story a significant amount. Tiamiras, Sanabalis, and the Lady are also in the story a significant amount. As a result of all of the activities relating to dragons you learn a lot about their race and their past. A new dragon is added to the already volatile mix of dragons; I really enjoyed the addition of this new dragon.

Kaylin's powers continue to grow but also continue to remain mysterious. Kaylin doesn't continue any of her magic training in this book but is instead spends time taking etiquette lessons with a different dragon to prepare for her meeting with the Emperor (which still hasn't happened).

It's not that these books aren't well written; it's that there are so many little things going on that it makes the story move very slowly. The time period covered in this novel is very short, things are very complicated, and at times very confusing. Despite Kaylin's growing powers she has the same problems from book to book (being late, not getting to eat, not committing to Severn, not being dressed properly, etc) she just seems somewhat stagnant to me. Severn could be an awesome character but, as with the last book, we barely heard from him.

I love this world and I think the plot is interesting; there is just too much going on and it is squished into too short of a time...yet it seems like the story is moving so slowly. The characters that I loved from the first few books in this series have grown stagnant. The best part of this book was the addition of a new, and rather snarky, dragon character.

The book wraps up okay, there is still a lot left unsettled and I am having a hard time seeing where all of this is going.

Overall this was an okay addition to the series. I loved the dragon history and the addition of a new dragon character. I did not enjoy how the story started so slow; how hectic and confusing...yet slow moving the plot has been. I did not enjoy how none of the characters seemed to change or grow. I also didn't enjoy the small parts some of my favorite characters were given. The book is technically well written and the world is wonderful but I am having a hard time seeing where this series is going. If the next book, Cast in Peril, is indeed the last in the series I will read it...if not I think I will hold off for a bit to see if things start coming together a bit better for this series. With the exception of this book and parts of the last book, this has been an excellent fantasy series.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

2012 - Debut Author Reading Challenge

I am signing up for another reading challenge: the 2012 Debut Author Reading Challenge. This challenge is being hosted by the Story Siren. Read below or follow the image below to sign up and get more information on this challenge.

To read and review a minimum of twelve young adult or middle grade debut novels between the dates of January 1, 2012 – January 31, 2013.*

- You must have a Blog to post your reviews or be a member of Goodreads. Youtube Book Reviewers count too!
- Your blog/video must be written in English.
- Deadline to join is May 31, 2012.

- Must be a young adult or middle grade title.
- Must be the author’s YA or MG debut, released in 2012.
- If an author has a previous novel published for adults or children, they can still qualify for the challenge.
- If an author has a previous YA or MG title, they do not qualify for the challenge.

My books will be listed below as I read them:
1.    The Gathering Storm (Katrina Trilogy, Book 1) by Robin Bridges
2.    Katana by Cole Gibson
3.    Cabinet of Earths by Anne Nesbit
4.    Incarnate by Jodi Meadows
5.    Candlewax by C. Bailey Sims
6.    The Wicked and the Just by J. Anderson Coats
7.    The False Prince (The Ascendance Trilogy, Book 1) by Jennifer Nielsen
8.    Masque of the Red Death by Bethany Griffin
9.    The Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Christopher Healy
10.  Struck by Jennifer Bosworth
11.  Shadow and Bone (The Grisha, Book 1) by Leigh Bardugo
12.  The Dust Girl (American Fairy Trilogy, Book 1) by Sarah Zettel
13.  Silver by Rhiannon Held
14.  Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass, Book 1)by Sarah J. Maas
15.  Something Strange and Deadlyby Susan Dennard
16.  Blackwood (Blackwood, Book 1) by Gwenda Bond
17.  Seraphina by Rachel Hartman
18.  Hemlock (Hemlock Trilogy, Book 1) by Kathleen Peacock
19.  Ironskin by Tina Connolly
20.  The Dark Unwinding by Sharon Cameron
21.  The High-Skies Adventures of Blue Jay the Pirate by Scott Nash
22. Dark Companion by Marta Acosta
23. Mystic City (Mystic City, Book 1) by Theo Lawrence
24. Cursed Pirate Girl Vol 1 by Jeremy Bastion
25. Splintered by A.G. Howard
26. Broken by A.E. Rought

2012 - TBR Pile Reading Challenge

I am signing up for another reading challenge: the 2012 TBR Pule Reading Challenge. This challenge is being hosted by Evie at Bookish. Read below or follow the image below to sign up and get more information on this challenge. I am shooting for the Love at First Sight level.

1-10 - A Firm Handshake
11-20 - A Friendly Hug
21-30 - A Sweet Kiss
31-40 - Love At First Sight
41-50 - Married With Children

My books will be listed below as I read them:
1.    The Jungle (The Stuff of Legend, Book 2) by Mike Raicht, Brian Smith and Charles Paul Wilson III (5/5 stars)
2.    Neverland by Joe Brusha
3.    Crossed (Matched, Book 2) by Ally Condie
4.    Courtney Crumrin and the Coven of Mystics (Courtney Crumrin, Book 2) by Ted Naifeh
5.    Geek Wisdom by various
6.    Mouse Guard: Fall of 1152 by David Peterson
7.    Hatter M: Volume 1 by Frank Beddor
8.    The Iron Thorn (The Iron Codex, Book 1) by Caitlin Kittredge
9.    Raised by Wolves by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
10.  The Darkest Edge of Dawn (Charlie Madigan, Book 2) by Kelly Gay
11.  Courtney Crumrin in the Twilight Kingdom (Courtney Crumrin, Book 3) by Ted Naifeh
12.  The Dragon's Tooth (Ashtown Burials, Book 1) by N.D. Wilson
13.  Territory by Emma Bull
14.  Courtney Crumrin's Monstrous Holiday (Courtney Crumrin, Book 4) by Ted Naifeh
15.  Habitation of the Blessed (Dirge of Prestor John, Book 1) by Catherynne M. Valente
16.  Bloodlines (Bloodlines, Book 1) by Richelle Mead
17.  Mouse Guard: Winter 1152 by David Petersen
18.  Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor
19.  Some Girls Bite (Chicagoland Vampires, Book 1) by Chloe Neill
20.  Alison Hewitt is Trapped by Madeleine Roux
21.  March of the Wooden Soldiers (Fables, Book 4) by Bill Willingham
22.  Siren by Tricia Rayburn
23.  The Mean Seasons (Fables, Book 5) by Bill Willingham
24.  Graceling by Kristen Chashore
25.  Erak's Ransom (Ranger's Apprentice, Book 7) by John Flanagan
26.  Fire (Graceling, Book 2) by Kristen Cashore
27.  Arabian Nights (and Days) (Fables, Book 7) by Bill Willingham
28.  Wolves (Fables, Book 8) by Bill Willingham
29.  Halt's Peril (Ranger's Apprentice, Book 9) by John Flanagan
30.  Sons of Empire (Fables, Book 9)by Bill Willingham
31.  Unholy Ghosts (Downside Ghosts, Book 2)by Stacia Kane
32.  Kind (The Good Neighbors, Book 3)by Holly Black and Ted Naifeh
33.  Dead Reckoning (Sookie Stackhouse, Book 11) by Charlaine Harris
34.  Everbody Sees the Ants by A.S. King
35.  Unholy Magic (Downside Ghosts, Book 2) by Stacia Kane
36.  The Good Prince (Fables, Book 10) by Bill Willingham
37.  Cascade (River of Time, Book 2) by Lisa T. Bergren
38.  War and Pieces (Fables, Book 11) by Bill Willingham
39.  Emperor of Nihon-Ja (Ranger's Apprentice, Book 10) by John Flanagan
40.  The Dark Ages (Fables, BOok 12) by Bill Willingham
41.  The Strange Case of the Origami Yoda by Tom Angleberger
42.  Theft of Swords (Riyria Revelations, Book 1) by Michael J. Sullivan
43.  The Great Fables Crossover (Fables, Book 13) by Bill Willingham
44.  Down to the Bone (Quantum Gravity, Book 5) by Justina Robson
45.  Witches (Fables, Book 14) by Bill Willingham
46.  Rose Red (Fables, Book 15) by Bill Willingham
47.  Ruby Red (Edelstein, Book 1) by Kerstin Gier
48. A Beautiful Friendship by David Weber
49 Legend by Marie Lu
50. Die for Me (Revenants, Book 1) by Amy Plum
51. Indigo Springs by A.M. Dellamonica
52. Mystery of Metamorphosis by Frank Ryan
53. The Bookman (The Bookman Histories, Book 1) by Lavie Tidhar
54. Princess of Glass (Twelve Dancing Princesses, Book 2) by Jessica Day George
55. Rise of Empire (Riyria Revelations Omnibus, Book 2) by Michael J. Sullivan
56. The White Tiger (Dark Heavens, Book 1) by Kylie Chan
57. The Warded Man (The Demon Cycle, Book 1) by Peter V. Brett
58. The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupery
59. Torrent (River of Time, Book 3) by Lisa T. Bergren

2012 -Steampunk Reading Challenge

I am signing up for another reading challenge: the 2012 Steampunk Reading Challenge. This challenge is being hosted by Dark Faerie Tales. Read below or follow the image below to sign up and get more information on this challenge.  I am shooting for the Gears level.

Reading Levels:
1. Gaslight – Choose 6 books to read
2. Gears – Choose 12 books to read
3. Gadgets – Choose 18 books to read
4. Greased – Choose 24 books to read
5. Steamed – Choose 30+ books to read

My books will be listed below as I read them:
1.    The Iron Thorn (The Iron Codex, Book 1) by Caitlin Kittredge
2.    The Nightmare Garden (The Iron Codex, Book 2) by Caitlin Kittredge
3.    Heart of Steel (The Iron Seas, Book 2) by Meljean Brooke
4.    Timeless (Parasol Protectorate, Book 5) by Gail Carriger
5.    Masque of the Red Death by Bethany Griffin
6.    The Girl in the Clockwork Collar (Steampunk Chronicles, Book 2) by Kady Cross
7.    Night's Engines (The Nightbound Land, Book 2) by Trent Jamieson
8.    Something Strange and Deadlyby Susan Dennard
9.    Prince of Elves (Amulet, Book 5) by Kazu Kibuishi
10.  Ironskin by Tina Connolly
11.  Tin Swift (Age of Steam, Book 2) by Devon Monk
12.  The Dark Unwinding by Sharon Cameron
13.  Dearly Beloved (Gone with Respiration, Book 2) by Lia Habel
14. The Bookman (The Bookman Histories, Book 1) by Lavie Tidhar
15. The Kingmakers (Vampire Empire, Book 3) by Clay and Susan Griffith
16. The Inexplicables (Clockwork Century, Book 5) by Cherie Priest

Audiobook Review - How to Flirt with a Naked Werewolf by Molly Harper (4.5/5 stars)

Reading level: Adult
Genre: Paranormal Romance/Humor
Size: 384 pages
Publisher: Pocket Books
Release Date: February 22, 2011
ISBN: 978-1439195864
Stand Alone or Series: 1st in a series
Source: Audiobook through
Rating: 4.5/5 stars

I really enjoyed Molly Harper's first Jane Jameson series, so I was excited to see that she had a new series out. Like the previous series this book was hilarious. The lead character is super snarky, but has a lot of heart. The romance is sweet and sizzling, and the setting is perfect for a winter read. I listened to this book on audio and it was incredibly well done.

Mo has just moved to Alaska in an effort to escape her hippie parents, get over a relationship that totally fizzled, and just in general start over. Grundy, Alaska initially appears to be an isolated but charming town. That is until things start going strange. One of Mo's neighbor's Cooper Graham is scornful of her ability to survive the Grundy winter but when he shows up injured (in wolf form) on her porch things get a bit crazy. Then there is this giant wolf that has been killing people. Mo is beginning to wonder if everything is tied together.

My first thought when Mo started dealing with her overbearing mother is that Harper must have some mommy issues; because all of her female leads have a horrible time with their mothers. Aside from that I really enjoyed Mo; she is a down to earth, hilarious person, who is sweet and helpful to those around her but has a core of steel and toughness when she has to. Cooper is beyond drool-worthy; he is sexy, wounded, and has that whole dark brooding thing going on. He also has a wicked sense of humor, is intensely loyal, and incredibly intense in his love for Mo. He is pretty much one of the better male leads I have read about this year.

The chemistry Cooper and Mo have is amazing; I was sucked into their relationship and really rooting for things to work out between them.

I loved the small town of Grundy; Harper describes the benefits and drawbacks to living in a small town perfectly. This was an excellent winter read because most of the story takes place in the winter and over Christmas. Watching Mo adjust to extremely cold weather was hilarious, since she is from the deep south. As a Minnesotan I could relate to some of her cold weather problems and got a good chuckle out of it.

I did find Mo's quick acceptance of Cooper's werewolfiness to be a bit strange. Mo attributes it to her open-minded hippie flower child upbringing. To be fair she does question her easy acceptance a number of times, but initially she is just like "huh, so you're a werewolf, okay".

The town of Grundy is full of a number of quirky and wonderful secondary characters. All of them were well-done, very real, and fun to read about. The mystery of the mysterious deaths was also well done and I loved the way everything was wrapped up.

I will also say that as much as I enjoy Harper's books they are the type of book I can only take in small quantities. For example reading this one book was a lot of fun, but I wouldn't want to read three books in a row like this. They are a bit too fluffy and chick-lit for that. Still the book was hilarious, incredibly well done, and a fun light diversion.

Overall I really enjoyed this book a lot. It was a fun and hilarious romp. Mo is a perfect character; she is snarky, witty, yet still caring and a bit tough. Cooper was a wonderful male lead he has a dark sense of humor, is sexy as hell, and intense in his love for Mo. The chemistry between the two was sweet and a joy to read about. I loved the town of Grundy, Alaska and because of the wintry setting this book made an especially wonderful winter read. I am excited to read the next book in Harper's Naked Werewolf series called, The Art of Seducing a Naked Werewolf. I highly recommend this series to fans of humorous paranormal romance. If you enjoyed Harper's Jane Jameson series, this book was ever better than that.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Winner of the Midwinter's Eve Blog Hop!

Thanks to everyone who participated in the Midwinters's Eve Blog Hop! It was a wonderful success and there were 271 entries. Also a lot of new people stopped by for this hop. As you can see my Google Follower number is 1000+ which is unbelievable. So I will definitely be holding another giveaway soon to thank you all for following!

The winner of this blog hop was:


The winner has been emailed. There were 271 entries into this contest, winners were chosen using

Review - The Last Slayer by Nadia Lee (2/5 stars)

Reading level: Adult
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Size: 612 KB
Publisher: Carina Press
Release Date: December 26, 2011
Stand Alone or Series: First in a series?
Source: eGalley through Net Galley(dot)com
Rating: 2/5 stars

I got an egalley of this book to review through NetGalley(dot)com. This was an okay book about a woman who hunts demons and then finds out she is a Slayer. While there wasn't anything technical wrong with the story, I just wasn't drawn to the characters and thought that the plot was a bit silly at points.

Ashera is an excellent demon slayer. She is hired by a company to protect them against some dragonlords and ends up killing one of their dragons. Now the dragonlords are after her. She isn't sure if she can handle all of this on her own, then Ramiel appears. He is a sexy dragonlord who seems to have sworn some kind of vow to protect her. Then Ashera finds out she is a Slayer of legend and the other dragonlords will stop at nothing to slay her.

First of all let's discuss the characters. Ashera is your pretty typical urban fantasy heroine; she acts tough as nails, gets in over her head a lot, and acts like she can take on the world when she knows she can't. So she was okay as a female lead, but nothing special. It did bother me a bit that she kept pretending to stand up to Ramiel and then went ahead and did whatever he told her. On top of this a big deal is made about how ugly Ashera is and how horrible this is. Things don't start getting better for her until her true nature is revealed and she turns into a sexy looking slayer lady. Really? Do all our heroines need to be sexy and beautiful to be effective?

Ramiel was a horrible male lead. He is supposed to be sexy, and maybe his body is described that way, but he was almost as deceitful as the bad guys. He basically rapes Ashera (mentally and kind of physically) but she likes it, so it is all okay. Then he uses her towards his own ends. But Ashera thinks that is okay too because you know in a way it kind of helped her. I thought the two of them , Ashera and Ramiel, had absolutely no chemistry what so ever. This gets even creepier once Ashera turns pretty and Ramiel gets all hot because Ashera looks so much like her mother, who he used to love. Does that have a bit of a yuck factor for anyone else?

There are quite a few decent fight scenes in the beginning, but this tapers off from the middle to end of the book. Ashera spends a lot of time bathing, changing cloths, and talking politics in the middle to end of the book. While I found the beginning somewhat interesting, the middle was boring. There is a gigantic fight scene in the end of the book, but by that time I disliked Ashera and Ramiel so much I just didn't care what happened to them.

I also didn't quite understand the use of Sex to fuel psychic power as the "magic system" in this world. Supposedly demons eat Sex which weakens their victims, and you can take a medicine-like form of Sex to enhance your power. You can also generate Sex by having sex with someone and storing it up. It was just a weird system and was never explained well, it also didn't make much sense overall. As you might be able to tell this is an adult only book; there are a lot of very explicit sex scenes in here.

The book wraps up decently but you can tell there is a lot more to the story. Ashera still needs to collect more Heartstones to grow her power and she need to get her new lands all taken care of.

Overall this was not my favorite read. Ashera is an inconsistent characters that initially seems kick-butt but turns wishy washy as the story continues. Her and Ramiel don't have any chemistry together to speak of; Ramiel uses and abuses her at every turn and this is constantly explained away as "okay" because Ashera benefits from and enjoys the abuse/use. The magic system fueled by Sex with a capital S, was confusing and never well-explained. I didn't enjoy the world or the characters. Technically the novel was well-written and easy to read, but I disliked the world and characters so much that in the end I just didn't care. I won't be reading more of this series.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Review - The Siege of Macindaw (Ranger's Apprentice, Book 6) by John Flanagan (4/5 stars)

Reading level: Middle Grade
Genre: Fantasy
Size: 320 pages
Publisher: Puffin
Release Date: May 18, 2010
ISBN: 978-0142415245
Stand Alone or Series:6th book in the Ranger's Apprentice series
Source: Swapped through
Rating: 4/5 stars

This is the sixth book in the Ranger's Apprentice series. It was an excellent addition to the series and does a good job wrapping up the story that was left hanging in book 5.

Will is trying to conceive a plan to rescue Alyss from Keren, the knight who revolted and took over Macindaw. Horace shows up and between him, Will, a small group of Skandians, and the people who live outside Macindaw in the forest they will have to come up with a plan to rescue Alyss. Things become even more dire when Will finds out that Keren is allying with the Scotti; this is a move that puts the country in danger and is something Will needs to stop before it happens.

This book basically completes the story started in the fifth book, which ended on a total cliffhanger. You can really see how the characters have grown and matured in this book; Will has lost a lot of his impatience and Horace has become a very tempered and strategic warrior. I love the banter between Will and Horace; they differ in opinions and complain to each other but are still obviously wonderful friends and support each other. It was fun to see how Alyss has grown as well. The relationship between her and Will is sweet and also a bit frustrating since they have trouble expressing their feelings for each other. I was a bit disappointed that Halt wasn't in the book more.

I also enjoyed that the Skandians play a big part in this book. The bad guy here, Keren, is a good bad guy. He is not totally evil and isn't all that happy with his actions; so he does generate some sympathy with the readers despite his evil actions.

Like previous books this is a well-written fantasy story. This book focuses more on battle tactics and strategy than adventure. It is all very well done and easy to read. There is nothing ground-breaking or incredibly creative here, it is just a very well done middle grade/YA fantasy.

Unlike the previous book this book wrapped up nicely. I can't wait to see what future books hold for these characters.

Overall I enjoyed this continuation of the Ranger's Apprentice series. I am excited to read the next book, Erak's Ransom. This is a solid fantasy book that focuses mostly on battle tactics, not adventure like the previous books. It is well-written and has characters that are very well done. A great read for fans of more traditional fantasy fare.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Review - Bad Blood (House of Comarre, Book 3) by Kristen Painter (3.5/5 stars)

Reading level: Adult
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Size: 448 pages
Publisher: Orbit
Release Date: December 1, 2011
ISBN: 978-0316084758
Stand Alone or Series: 3rd book is the House of Comarre series
Source: Borrowed from Library
Rating: 3.5/5 stars

This is the third book in the House of Comarre series by Painter. It was a well done book and was full of excellent characters, an engaging world, and a storyline that is getting a bit too epic. My main complaint with this book would be the constantly expanding number of viewpoints that the story is told from.

Chrysabelle is recovering from her debilitating injuries which she incurred in the last book. She wants to recover as soon as possibly to start the hunt for her brother. Her quest to do this leads her to a number of sidequests that all stem from needing to recover the Ring of Sorrows. Titania is trying to regroup from her losses in the last book and is building herself both an empire and a family. Doc is dealing with a lot of strange changes that happened to him when he went through the witch's smoke and broke his curse. In additional to all of this a number of strange events as well as the murder of fake comarres have been happening throughout the city; this is keeping both the police and the Kubai Mata on their toes.

I absolutely love this world and I also really enjoy the broad history involving the Kubai Mata, the Comarre and the other races. The plot expands exponentially in this book and broadens into a scope that is approaching epic. This is both good and bad.

The bad part is that we are hearing this from six or more viewpoints and this makes the story progress very slowly. Not to mention that we don't get to see as much of Chrysabelle and Mal as I would have liked. The viewpoints we hear from are: Chrysabelle, Doc, Mal, the Preacher, the Mayor, the witches, and Creek. There may be more viewpoints that I missed; I think we hear from the demon's point of view as well as from Doc's girlfriend. This is a lot of switching between characters. I like most of the characters, but I wish we could focus on just a couple. If we could just deal with the Chrysabelle/Mal storyline and the Doc/witches storyline that would be great. I didn't like the Mayor all that much and she was in a lot of the story. I think Titania is interesting as well, but didn't enjoy that so much of the story focused on her.

As in previous books Chrysabelle and Mal make some, but not much, progress in their relationship. They both seemed a bit tired and older in this book. Mal's curse was kind of shrugged to the side and given kind of a "well we'll deal with that later".

Sounds like I am complaining a lot...I guess I am. I really loved the first two books in this series and, although I still really enjoyed this book, is seemed kind of unfocused and all over the place. That being said I do love a lot of these characters, I love how the plot is broadening, and I love the world that is being created. The writing is well done and easy to read.

Overall this was a great book, but not as good as previous books in the series. There are a ton of viewpoints and 4 or 5 different story arcs going at once, this is fine...but it makes the story progress slowly and forced me to spend a lot of time reading about characters I didn't care about all that much. Chrysabelle and Mal have lost a lot of sparkle they had as a potential couple; they both seem tired and resigned throughout. I still love a lot of the characters and I love the world; but I felt like the story had lost focus and was trying to go in too many directions at once. This book was part urban fantasy, part epic fantasy, and part paranormal romance. I will definitely read the next book in the series, but I hope it is more focused than this one was.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Happy Holidays!

Hope that you all have a wonderful Holiday Season, a Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year!

News - Book Releases for Week 52 (Dec 25th-Dec 31st)

Release Date: December 27th

Release Date: December 31st

Release Date: December 27th

Release Date: December 27th 2011

Release Date: December 27th

Release Date: December 27th 2011

Release Date: December 27th 2011

Release Date: December 27th 2011