Werewolves, and vampires, and bears, OH MY!

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THE entertainment world goes through phases all the time, but one that seems to have always stuck around in some form has been the supernatural.

Vampires were hot some ten years ago with YA books like TWILIGHT and VAMPIRE ACADEMY and VAMPIRE DIARIES which brought them to a much younger audience than that of books like INTERVIEW WITH THE VAMPIRE or movies like BLADE and shows like TRUE BLOOD. It seemed for a time that we were saturated in them. But the supernatural elements of vampires, werewolves, and ghouls and goblins never really disappear. They just lay low for a while.

Sometime last year I saw a post on Twitter’s #mswl (manuscript wishlist) where agents were asking for vampire novels, and the internet went wild. To sum up the tweets, vampires need a comeback. Not long after that there were calls for witches and werewolves and folks, I am HERE FOR IT.

When Renée Ahdieh announced her new YA title, THE BEAUTIFUL, fans went wild. Not long after that, fellow best-selling author, Jay Kristoff announced his own, EMPIRE OF THE VAMPIRE. Olivia Wildenstein released her YA werewolf novel, PACK OF BLOOD AND LIES in April (if you haven’t picked that one up, do it NOW!) with the sequel releasing soon.

Witches never seem to go away, and authors keep coming up with brand new ways to portray them. SERPENT and DOVE by SHELBY MAHURIN is one that is releasing this year that comes to mind. Also, THE BLOOD HEIR by Amelie Zao.

But where are my werewolves? SHIVER by Maggie Stiefvater had a good long run with her Mercy Falls series, NIGHTSHADE, and Patricia Briggs with her Mercy Thompson series and Alpha and Omega dominate the NA crowd. So, where are they in the YA world?

With UNSPOKEN, I did not initially intend it to be a shifter novel. But, as a pantser, I let the ideas flow as I write and never truly plan ahead of time. So, when the story took hold and formed, I found myself face to face with a sort of werewolf story-line that, after much research, shifted (no pun intended) into something much much more than the usual trope.

I have always had an obsession with wolves. They peek into my stories in subtle ways and, in the case of UNSPOKEN, massive ways. I once wrote a book when I was younger called The Leader of the Pack, which was essentially The Lion King with wolves. After that, I wrote another about a princess and her wolf guardian. After UNSPOKEN, I found myself making the wolf a central, but ambiguous character in my King Arthur retelling IRON to LACE (unpublished and under revision currently) and a spooky Red Riding Hood retelling, EVERY BROKEN THING (still underway)

Wolves are not going anywhere in my writing. But stick around because I promise you they will not get boring.

The Gwylis in UNSPOKEN is taken from Welsh mythology and, like the werewolves of legend that you know, they are cursed. But this curse they did to themselves by making a pact with demons for power to overcome their enemies. So, ultimately, what we have is both a curse and a gift. I twisted up what people knew and made it my own. If you want wolves, I have wolves: killer ones, good ones, and ones with serious bad attitudes with book-boyfriend hair.

That all being said, I’d like to present the cover:

Isn’t it gorgeous????!!! The team at PARLIAMENT HOUSE PRESS brought the goods! What we see a mashup of the two worlds that our protagonist, Izzy, must choose between; the castle she will inherit or the wilds of the unknown.

Unspoken is up on Goodreads! Add it to your WANT TO READ and any lists of your choosing! https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/41180912-unspoken

I would love to hear your thoughts and questions. I’m around any time so connect with me here, or Insta, Twitter, Goodreads, anywhere!

The wolves are coming. Shhhhhhh.

UNSPOKEN COVER REVEAL: THE WOLVES ARE COMING.

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The cover reveal for my debut is in just three days and to celebrate, I will be doing a giveaway for ANY NEW RELEASE BOOK OF YOUR CHOICE! All details will be on both my Instagram and PHP so make sure to follow both to stay up to date. I am so excited to show this cover to you all!

Follow me on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/the_bookeaters_daughter/

Follow Parliament House on Instagram for all the details:http:// https://www.instagram.com/theparliamentpress/

If you’re interested in being part of the Bookstagram cover reveal, sign up here! IF YOU MAKE AN ORIGINAL PHOTO FOR THE BOOK< YOU WILL BE ENTERED INTO THE GIVEAWAY with THREE EXTRA ENTRIES! https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSc-5PVHXIkFPQmnEuWFa0pkLG3weNw8DeNStFPQ20pTRw3HJw/viewform

If you want an arc, sign up here! https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdlAt9sa2IPivHjScPvAOU5f5vTxfwfVrtEEyHVrH21oXJjxg/viewform

And LASTLY! If you want to be part of the blog tour when UNSPOKEN releases in the fall, sign up here! https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSea30yNh_LPixsz9PIDDt21ybq5CFVGjBvKayHnEa4JcuCWRw/viewform

UNLEASHED COVER REVEAL!

Behold the stunning cover to the final installment of the UNSPOKEN SERIES! This has got to be the best one of the three and my favorite! It embodies everything the last book will be about. I cannot wait for you all to dive in this summer!

Add it to Goodreads here: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/50244641-uncaged?ac=1&from_search=true&qid=I2J4CvQ8cy&rank=1

Haven’t read Unspoken yet? Grab it wherever books are sold and keep your eyes open next month for book two, UNCAGED!!!!

The Betrothed: Review

Thanks to Edelweiss and the publisher for the e-arc to review!

Hollis Brite has just become the object of the young king’s affection, but her eyes have turned toward a foreign boy who reminds her that she is more than just an ornament to the court.

That is the gist of it.

First up is Hollis. She is incredibly boring, but she knows it, which is nice. She has dedicated her life to winning over the king but changes her mind as quick as this book read.

Jameson, the king, is also as dull as a spoon. He feels very dutiful and stoic but is also verytoxicmasculinitycringworthygrossandtedious.

Silas, who has shockingly blue eyes (I’m a sucker for those. I wrote one of those types in my series but mine is a werewolf so…). He too is very toneless, but he can work with his hands and that’s hot, right? Don’t get too attached.

Delia Grace is a two-timing DOB who is only out for herself. That’s just how I feel. You all may have your own opinion, but she is just awful.

On the BRITE side, I went into this book knowing I would not be blown away. I mean, if you’ve read The Selection, you know NOT to expect tremendous amounts of world-building, well-rounded characters, and intellect. I am in it for the trash factor. But what I didn’t expect was that even after all these years, we are still being given these invisible villains and impossibly dull characters. The insta-love was cringe-worthy and so 2006. We need better in YA.

The book read quickly so that’s a plus. Better luck next time.

Red Hood: Review

Thank you to Edelweiss and the publisher for the chance to review this title ahead of its release date.

DAMSEL was my first book by Elane Arnold and I knew after reading it that she was going to be one of my auto-buy authors. I went in with the expectations that carried over from DAMSEL and I was not disappointed.

Let me start this review by saying 1. that this book is in second person present tense POV, so if you do not like that sort of POV, steer clear. I, myself, don’t mind it and find it rather exciting to read, but I digress. 2. there are graphic scenes of periods and sexual encounters

Bisou lives with her grandmother in Seattle. She has a loving boyfriend and a seemingly quiet life. Until one night, she’s attacked by a wolf after running away from an embarrassing situation with her boyfriend. After she manages to kill the beasts, she realizes that it wasn’t a wolf, but a human boy thus triggering a story with a history of loss, sexual empowerment, strong female bonds, and toxic masculinity.

As I stated in my DAMSEL review, there were some graphic scenes that are very important to YA. As much as the story is about men and how their toxic traits can turn them into literal wolves, it was also refreshing to see Bisou’s boyfriend be so caring and understanding, something a lot of men can learn from. Although I doubt men will be reading this book, women can also know what it is like to be in a healthy relationship and to never take any shit.

This book is one big act of symbolism; of women rising and fighting back.

This was an amazing feminist work of art that I will buy for my shelf when it releases.

Feather: Review

The author provided a free copy of the book for review purposes.

Ok, so wtf? I wasn’t expecting to get my mind blown, but here I am cleaning up the mess that is my heart and brains because this book was everything I wanted in a paranormal romance and more. Slow burn romance. Steamy love scenes. GAH!!!

I should have expected it. I absolutely loved the author’s Boulder Wolf series. If you haven’t read those yet, DO IT.

THE STORY:

Leigh is an angel who takes on a difficult mission to complete her wings. Propelling this is the urge to marry above her station. But her mission isn’t any old sinner. It’s one of the worst of all, a triple number sinner named Jarod Adler. If she succeeds, she will gain the feathers she needs to ascend. So, off she goes to France where she infiltrates Jarod’s business and eventually finds herself falling for him.

I absolutely loved Leigh’s journey from hardcore focused angel to confused and screw it all badass. Up until a certain point, she knows exactly what she wants and then it all goes to hell. Seeing her turmoil as she loses feathers for some sinning of her own to protecting a sinner was so fun that I devoured this book in less than two days.

The side characters and the world-building clenched a five star from me. I loved the earthly setting of France since it’s one of my favorite places in the world and the angelic heavens and the way the angels travel.

This ultimate story of forbidden love left me begging for more. I am so happy it’s going to be a series.

Tweet Cute: Review

Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for a chance to review this title.

Okay so, this was my absolute favorite contemporary book of 2019.

Let’s start with the meat on this adorable rom-com of a book:

Pepper: she’s the daughter of a family-owned burger empire, excels at school in an almost obsessive way, a swimmer, and loves to bake and runs a blog with her older sister.

Jack: Aspiring app creator, twin, diver, and son of local deli owners.

These two meet in three different platforms. First is the anonymous high school chat app that Jack created where everyone has animal names and nobody knows anyone’s identities. Second is on Twitter when Pepper’s mother decides to roll out a new menu of grilled cheese and confidently names one after Jack’s family’s specialty. Pepper and Jack, unbeknownst to anyone who they really are in real life, find themselves in a Twitter war. Third, they both go to the same school and end up friends after the dive team cuts into the sim teams’ training sessions.

Both kids are equally as obsessed with the Twitter war they rage, even when they discover who each other is in real life and eventually through the chat app.

I loved:

The Twitter war, no matter how petty it was
The budding romance between two rivals
The subplots into their family dynanimcs
The food
The morals
The pop-culture references
GAH DID I SAY THE ROMANCE???

Not a fan of:

Yea, that’s blank. I loved this book for its cheese (quite literally). I cannot wait to see what else Emma Lord has in store for the future. She is one to watch.

Together We Caught Fire: Review

Some spoilers. Read at your own risk.

Also, my Grammarly account is on hold so tough out the grammatical mistakes I am too lazy to fix.

When I first read the synopsis for this book I said to myself, this sounds like some weirdo dreams I used to have when I had a crush on Joshua Goodwin back in elementary school. I seriously imagined my mother divorcing my dad and marrying Josh’s father (where his mother went, I don’t know. Dead maybe. I was a weird kid) and OMG the scenarios that would play in my head. GAH. Anyhow, the synopsis had me all, wow, I’d love to read something like my juvenile romantic inventions, but sexier.

So, here we have Lane who, after her dad announces with engagement, finds herself living with the very boy she’s had a crush on, like, FOREVER. Cue the fans because is it hot in here? Not only that, but he’s the boyfriend of Lane’s friend AND NOT ONLY THAT she finds herself crushing on a mutual friend, Conner. When Lane hooks up with Conner, she finds that her feelings toward her step-brother Grey become muddled.

Gibson’s writing is literally to die for. At first, I thought it would too flowery for my taste but NOPE. It worked and it worked so well I need to take a class on how to write like her because she is GOALS.

The open discussion about Lane’s periods and endometriosis was a welcome topic seeing as a lot of women, including myself have suffered from such a thing and her doctor brushing her off saying she’s too young for such a thing, even though her mother had it, is so real-life. Women’s pain is often discredited. I was told the same and I ended up wth stage four endo that nearly rendered me infertile. Endo needs a cure. Fist pump.

The other topics I need to mention are that Lane’s family are Wiccans and that is not something we see in YA. Also, the slut-shaming that Lane puts up with not only from her school, but from Grey and her friend would have been infuriating if not for Lane’s attitude. She’s no pushover and makes it known.

Grey is one jerk of a character. For one, he’s controlling. He doesn’t show the least bit of interest in Lane, save for a few tiny moments, until she gets with Conner and then he goes all crazy, like some boys do when they want something they can’t have. Thank the gods that Lane sees it for what it is. Although her relationship with Conner becomes strained when her fantasies about Grey still vying to become reality.

And Sadie, Grey’s girlfriend, and Lane supposed friend is pretty much a sh&t person. The comments she makes regarding Lane’s clothing cannot be blamed on her conservative upbringing. She’s just downright rude.

And Conner, poor cinnamon Conner. I just fell for him. Hard.

All in all, this was a fantastic book and I loved every moment of the time I spent reading it. This book deals with some heavy topics and there is a trigger warning, but my final thoughts are that I feel like YA needs to tackle more topics like mental illness as well as homelessness, suicide, insomnia, as well as other health issues like the endo I mentioned above. It is doing a disservice to teens not to touch upon this and publish more books with these issues.

Ashlords: Review

Wow, there was a lot going on in this book! Warring clans. Magic. Revenge. Horses from the underworld. Yep, you heard me.

ASHLORDS follows three POVs, Imedle, a Dividian alchemist, Pippa, an Ashlord who comes from a family of Racing champions, and Adrian, a Longhorn whose only focus is to win. I love multiple POVs, so having three was no bother. It helped me get a perspective of each clan. I did not even know who to root for; I loved them all.

This story was incredibly unique. As the synopsis states, it is compared to one of my favorite books of all time, THE SCORPIO RACES, and although ASHLORDS lacked the heart of TSR, it was not diminished. I mean, horses that are phoenixes (as they are rightly called in the story) and have the ability to rebirth themselves with attributes depending on how the rider pours in the components into their ashes is f43king awesome. As I said, this did lack a bit of the feels, but it was a good story nonetheless. ASHLORDS had a lot to tackle, and Scott did it with expertise. I cannot wait to read the second!

The Shadows Between Us: Review

TRICIA NOOOO. WHY IS THIS A STANDALONE??

😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭

Ok, real review time.

Thank you to Edelweiss for the e-galley of this most insane and wonderous book.

Here are a few things that I loved:

  1. morally grey characters. Everywhere.
  2. a heroine who knows what she likes and is unapologetic for it.
  3. a sexy king with serious Darkling vibes but in a more shadowy way
  4. a slow burn romance
  5. a fashion-forward heroine
  6. court intrigue

This was probably the most fun I’ve had reading a book all year. Alessandra is a woman who knows what she wants and gets it. She wants power so she plans to seduce the un-seducable (this is not a word, I can feel it) king, get him to marry her, kill him, and rule the kingdom. Along the way, she finds herself so wrapped up in her schemes that she doesn’t notice that she’s falling for the mark. Oh man, what a crazy gal!

Kallias, The Shadow King is the Darkling, but sexier IMO. Is this possible? Yes, my friends, it is. This is why I could not get enough of the romance in this book, and let me tell you, there’s a lot of it so don’t get all, waaaah there was no action. you won’t care. Because of sexy Kallias. KALLIAS. Gosh, that scene in the brothel. I was wiping sweat from my brow. I swear to the gods.

But I must say, I was super sad that I almost cried right there onto my Kindle upon reading that this is standalone. I FEEL LIKE I LOST A LOVED ONE.

Don’t Read the Comments: Review

Thank you to NetGalley for the chance to review this title in exchange for an honest review.

Well, folks, I found gold in the sea of garbage. Ok, that’s harsh, but I have been reading some subpar novels lately and this one came at a good time. I’ve come to realize how much of a sucker I am for any sort of boo, involving video games. Ready Player and Otherworld are up there with my top favorite books ever so I guess that says a lot.

On one side of the tracks we have Div, a popular streamer from a struggling family and on the other side we have Aaron, a budding writer for an indie game developer. For Div, her streaming Reclaim the Sun pays the bills, and for Aaron, it causes a rift between him and his mother, who wants him to become a doctor like herself.

When Div suddenly becomes the focus of an online bullying group, she realizes that being a girl and being a non-white in the gaming world as well as the internet can be dangerous. Aaron meets Div by chance while gaming and they become fast friends, but for Aaron, aligning himself with the controversial streamer may cause his own dreams to suffer. It all comes down a boiling point during a gaming convention and nobody is backing down without a fight.

First things first. Eric Smith. He’s my dream agent. I’d sell my left foot to even get him to read a partial of my manuscripts. That being said, I scooped this title right up when it became available on NetGalley expecting nothing but perfection. Now, this isn’t a ploy to get him to message me and be all smitten over my review because let’s be real. He appreciates reviews but doesn’t go scouting for talent on Goodreads ha.

Smith writes the female perspective perfectly. He shows what it’s like for a female in the gaming world; a female anywhere on the internet or in the real world, honestly. All of his characters are relatable and I found myself so invested that I read this book in one sitting. This was a fun book carrying heavy topics like bullying and the pains of being a teenager which, we can all agree, is a struggle in itself. Sprinkle in some female empowerment and feminism and we have gold.

Read this book is you like:

Gaming culture (it’s the best)
Strong friendships
Light romance

Eva Evergreen-Semi-Magical Witch

For such a long time I wished that someone would write a book sorta like Kiki’s Delivery Service; a book similar to the magic I felt watching it for the first time, but not so close as to be a carbon copy. THIS IS THE BOOK, EVERYONE!!!

Eva is semi-magical which causes a ton of problems. She’s almost not even let in the Novice Witch trial and to top it off, she ends up in a town she may not even know is hers. Because you see, to complete her quest to become a Novice, she ust stay in a town for one full moon and prove that she can do good there. When Eva lands in Auteri, she discovers more than just a pretty coastal town. She finds heartbreak and loss that even her repair affinity magic cannot fix. Along with her newfound friends, she preps the town for a storm that could cause major damage is left to its own devices. Will her small magic be enough to stop it?

Reading this book put me right into a Ghibli film. If you follow my review you know that when I say that, I am probably going to give the book a high rating because of GHIBLI. The world that Julia Abe created took her child in me and brought her back to a time in her life where everything was magical and fun and amazing. I won’t compare this to Kiki anymore than I have to because it does Eva Evergreen a disservice. This book has set its self apart and in all the right ways.

The writing was easy to follow and super descriptive enough for us to fall into Eva’s magical world. The side characters who help her along the way hold their own. I’d rec this book to anyone looking for a Ghibli inspired middle-grade or anyone looking for a witch book with heart.

The only thing I did not like was the ending and that probably brought it down a star. But shoot, you know I’ll pick up the second book in a heartbeat.