Soulless at Sunset by Deanna Chase

Rating: (a very confused but strong) 4/5 stars Soulless at Sunset.jpg

Pages: 242 

Series: Last Witch Standing, Book 1

Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy, Romance, Paranormal Romance, Vampires, ShapeShifters, Witches, Magic

Publication Date: March 6, 2018

 

Almost right away I felt as if there was a lot to this story that I was missing. The world was already created and the plot seemed to be referencing events in the past as of they were common knowledge. Well, they are common knowledge if you’ve read the series this is a spinoff of – Crescent City Fae. This is my warning to you not to do the same thing that I did. While it was an enjoyable read, I found some things quite confusing without having the full background of the characters and the world. 

Truth be told, I probably should have done my research before finishing this read and not after, so this review is from the perspective of someone who accidentally read the books out of order. Suffice it to say, a review on Influential Magic will be coming shortly.

 


Now, to get into the actual review…

 

Link, Willow’s wolf-shifting shih tzu, was in full-on agitated mode as he shoved his muzzle into my face and let out a low whine.

“Christ, you’re a pathetic wolf,” I said, gently patting the top of his head. (Ch. 5)

Right away, I was drawn in by Phoebe and her badass attitude. As the story progressed it became apparent that her attitude was warranted. I enjoyed seeing her prove time and time again that she was considered the top of her field for a reason.

I also enjoyed seeing the interactions between characters. These interactions are what really sold for me that this wasn’t the first book in a new world, but I can’t say I’m mad about that. Instead, I got to see the inner workings of a group of people that were already established. While it was confusing at times, it allowed the characters to pull me into their thoughts and lives faster than a developing character would have been able to. 

Another thing I enjoyed about this story was the way that the two main characters tackled the mystery they were trying to solve. I always enjoy a story that does multiple perspectives well. Chase did a fantastic job at making these switches as seamless as possible, making it extremely easy for me to slip into the narrative whenever I picked the book up.

If you’re looking for a quick and fun read about supernatural beings, I’d recommend giving this world a try – but you should probably start at the beginning, unlike me. 

 

Continue reading “Soulless at Sunset by Deanna Chase”

Etiquette & Espionage by Gail Carriger

Rating: 5/5 stars Etiquette and Espionage.jpg

Pages: 307

Series: Finishing School, Book 1

Genres: Young Adult, SciFi, Steampunk, Fantasy, Historical Fiction, Historical

Publication Date: February 5, 2013

 

Sophronia grinned again. “No, but -”

Dimity said, “I know that look. That’s the look she gets right before she goes off exploring.”

“But?” prompted Sidheag.

“But we could break into the school records to find out.”
“Sophronoa, that’s a terrible idea!” protested Dimity.

“You’re mad,” added Sidheag.

Agatha only looked wide-eyes.

“Ah, but I have the rump card.”

“You do?”

“Oh, yes. I’m going to borrow an obstructor and some soap.” (Ch. 15)

I must admit, the steampunk movement wasn’t really my thing when it was in its heyday. Recently I’ve been trying to read more in this genre, to mixed results. Thankfully, Etiquette & Espionage has been exactly what I was looking for in this genre. A beautiful mix of historical societal views, supernatural races, and futuristic technology, Etiquette & Espionage quickly drew me into its world. Here, I find, I’m more than happy to stay.

Growing up, I was endlessly fascinated with the concept of finishing schools and the art of etiquette. I remember playing a game when I was a kid – Pajama Sam 3, I believe – and there’s a small scene in the game that involved etiquette classes. After this, I bugged my parents for months to let me take etiquette classes. Like Sophronia’s mother, mine wrote me off as a lost cause. Unlike Sophronia, this didn’t end with me getting sent away to finishing school – or even taking etiquette lessons. In high school I had a friend that took etiquette classes and hated them, which made me want to go even more. Sure she wasn’t having fun, but now I knew someone my age who’d been and once again the desire to be a proper lady fueled me to bother my parents. Once again, they laughed it off. To this day I have not taken etiquette classes and think of them wistfully – even if I would have done atrociously and might not have enjoyed myself. At least I know I can walk and talk with a book on my head (yes, I know I’m strange).

Another thing that I’ve always liked reading is a good spy book – though here they call spies “intelligencers”. Carriger did an amazing job at creating a spy school that I can’t wait to read more about. The school itself intrigues me, as well as the classes and the people inside its walls. Both the people you’re meant to like and the people you’re meant to hate are extremely dynamic and I can’t wait to see how these relationships continue to grow and change as the story progresses.

If you’re looking for a fun spy book and are interested in the Steampunk genre, I’d highly recommend giving this book a try. As well, if you’re a fan of Steampunk reads and haven’t yet picked this book up, I’d recommend you do so. This world is intriguing and the people captivating. By far one of the best spy – and Steampunk – novels I’ve yet to read.

Continue reading “Etiquette & Espionage by Gail Carriger”

Eat Happy Too by Anna Vocino

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Welcome to the blog tour for gorgeous cook book, Eat Happy Too, by Anna Vocino! Check out all 160+ of her delicious recipes! Read on for a sneak peek at one of her tasty recipes!

 

Eat Happy Too: 160+ New Gluten Free, Grain Free, Low Carb Recipes for a Joyful Life

Publication Date: September 17th. 2019

Genre: Cook Book/ Healthy Eating/ Recipes

 

Anna Vocino is back with Eat Happy Too: 160+ NEW delicious grain-free, gluten-free, low carb recipes that are also free of processed sugars. Get back to cooking and retrain your taste buds to love food again. You’ll be shocked at how good food can taste!

Eat Happy Too has 160 more starters, mains, sides, soups, casseroles, slow cooker AND Instant Pot recipes, plus breakfast and a chapter to learn how to make sauces and dressings from scratch and not be stuck buying chemical laden versions from the grocery store. There is also a desserts chapter which has some SPLURGE recipes made from the finest ingredients, so that when you have something to celebrate, you can do it with minimal metabolic effect on your body.

Half of the recipes have dairy, half are dairy free, and most of the recipes with dairy can be made dairy free for those who want to limit their dairy intake. The book ends with a few lower carb cocktail recipes for those who want to play mixologist.

Diagnosed with celiac disease in 2002, Anna Vocino struggled to manage the effects of autoimmune disease and middle age weight gain while still being able to eat delicious and satisfying foods. In 2012, she started podcasting with Vinnie Tortorich and changed her way of eating to not only be gluten free, but also grain and sugar free. Her first cookbook, Eat Happy, is an Amazon best seller, and her audience made it very clear MORE RECIPES, PLEASE!

 

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Roasted Zucchini and Squash Tian

[YouTube Video Here]

Anna Vocino - Roasted Zucchini and Squash Tian - Pin2

Click here for the full recipe!


Amazon | B & N | Nook | IndieBound

Anna Vocino

Author Bio

Anna is the author of Eat Happy and Eat Happy Too. Her cookbooks are filled with gluten and grain free recipes that celebrate her half Southern, half Italian-girl heritage. She hopes you enjoy every tasty recipe from cover to cover.

Anna Vocino | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest| Tumblr| IMDb

 

 


Blog Tour Schedule

February 3rd

Tsarina Press (Spotlight) https://www.tsarinapress.com

I Smell Sheep (Review) http://www.ismellsheep.com/

Vick’s Bookish Writing (Review) https://vicksblogcom.home.blog/

February 4th

The Magic of Wor(l)ds (Spotlight) http://themagicofworlds.wordpress.com

Jessica Belmont (Spotlight) https://jessicabelmont.wordpress.com/

LoopyLouLaura (Review) https://www.loopyloulaura.com/

Scarlett Readz & Runz (Review) https://scarlettreadzandrunz.com/

February 5th

Where Dragons Reside (Spotlight) https://kernerangelina.live/

Reads & Reels (Spotlight) http://readsandreels.com

Sophril Reads (Review) http://sophrilreads.wordpress.com

February 6th

Dash Fan Book Reviews (Review) https://dashfan81.blogspot.com/

My Bookish Bliss (Review) http://www.mybookishbliss.com

February 7th

Cup of Toast (Review) https://cupoftoast.co.uk

Al-Alhambra Book Reviews (Review) https://alalhambrabookreviews.home.blog

The Faerie Review (Review) http://www.thefaeriereview.com

 


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Buried in My Past by Eva Mackenzie

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Buried in my Past.jpg

Welcome to the blog tour for Domestic Thriller, Buried in My Past by Eva Mackenzie! We’ve got reviews, excerpt reveals, interviews, and a guest post from the author! We also have the BIGGEST giveaway in R&R history and EVERYONE can enter, including our hosts! Are you ready for it?… A brand new Kindle Oasis (32 GB/ WIFI) in Champagne Gold, that retails for $279.00!!!!

 

Buried in My Past (Standalone)

Publication Date: February 6th, 2020

Genre: Domestic Thriller/ Romantic Suspense

Publisher: Craven Ink Press

Length: 379 pages

 

She’s desperate to stop the panic attacks. But the truth won’t set her free…

Jamie Kendal sees life through the bottom of a bottle. After surviving assault and betrayal, she is forced back to her hometown to care for her mother. Not long after her return, she’s plagued by terrifying slivers of memories from the night her twin brother disappeared forever…

Unearthing new evidence, she’s shocked to learn she’d been found wandering in the woods that same night—covered in blood. More than one person from her past hid the haunting truth that’s bubbling to the surface. The deeper she digs into the horrors from her past, the more she fears almost anyone could be a killer, including Jamie herself.

Can Jamie expose what happened that night, or will she join her missing brother?

**Trigger Warnings: Implied Sexual Assault but none depicted**


eva-fav-alley.jpg

Author Bio

Eva Mackenzie is an author who enjoys twisty, emotionally engrossing tales. Her debut novel has been a work in progress for over a decade. Under the urging of a loved one, it’s finally finished.

She is a wife and mother living on the east coast. When she isn’t writing, she is spending time with her family, training for her next marathon or reading stacks of suspense novels. Some of her favorite authors are Minka Kent, Dean Koontz, Tami Hoag, and Lisa Jackson.

Eva Mackenzie | Facebook | Instagram | Goodreads| Newsletter| Amazon


Every night her mother fell asleep atop a deep, dark secret. A box containing a mystery wrapped in the blood of her twins.

She wasn’t a killer. That’s what she told Drew; that’s what she told herself. But now, sitting on the floor of her mothers’ room, she cradled evidence that suggested otherwise. And she had no memory for an alibi.


 

Who’s ready for the ultimate giveaway?! Click the link below to enter for your chance to win a brand new Kindle Oasis (32 GB/ WIFI) in Champagne Gold!

 a Rafflecopter giveaway 

 


Blog Tour Schedule

February 3rd

Reads & Reels (Spotlight) http://readsandreels.com

Viviana MacKade (Spotlight) https://viviana-mackade.blog/

The Magic of Wor(l)ds (Interview) http://themagicofworlds.wordpress.com

I’m All About Books (Review) https://imallaboutbooks.com/

February 4th

Ghoulish Life & Reviews (Review) https://ghoulishspirit.wordpress.com/

Tales of a Natural Spoonie (Review) https://talesofanaturalspoonie.com/

Tsarina Press (Spotlight) https://www.tsarinapress.com

February 5th

My Bookish Bliss (Review) http://www.mybookishbliss.com

The Faerie Review (Review) http://www.thefaeriereview.com

Vick’s Bookish Writing (Review) https://vicksblogcom.home.blog/

February 6th

Ally’s Reading Corner (Review) http://allysreadingcorner.wordpress.com

Book Dragons Not Worms (Review) https://bookdragonsnotworms.blogspot.com/?m=1

Cup of Books Blog (Review) https://cupofbooksblog.wordpress.com/

The Eclectic Review (Review) https://eclecticreview.com/

February 7th

Ity Reads Books (Review) http://www.ityreadsbooks.home.blog

Life’s a Novelty (Review) https://lifesanovelty.blogspot.com/

Jessica Belmont (Review) https://jessicabelmont.wordpress.com/

Tranquil Dreams (Review) https://klling.wordpress.com/

Misty’s Book Space (Review) http://mistysbookspace.wordpress.com

 

Blog Tour Organized By:

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Rituals by Kelley Armstrong

Rating: 4/5 stars Rituals.jpg

Pages: 471

Series: Cainsville, Book 5

Genres: Adult, Thriller, Urban Fantasy, Paranormal, Mystery, Fiction, Supernatural, Romance

Publication Date: August 15, 2017

 

“I shot her.”

His lips twitched. “You…”

“She pissed me off.”

He choked on a laugh. “I see.”

“She really pissed me off.” (Ch. 3)

I must admit, this was a satisfying conclusion to a series I’ve grown quite fond of. It doesn’t tie up every loose end which leaves this world feeling just as organic as it did at the beginning. Personally, I’m not a fan of stories that end with a pretty little bow, with everything solved and no thoughts of “what now?”. Instead, these imperfect characters need to find a way to continue on with their lives and the choices they’ve made.

Armstrong also does a great job at introducing just the right amount of “new” into Rituals. Being the fifth and final book in a series, it can sometimes feel like too much is getting thrown at you too fast. Thankfully, Armstrong avoided this feeling altogether. She managed to tie in the new with the rest of the series, expanding on moments that the reader doesn’t necessarily realize were important all along.

As with the rest of this series, my favourite part of this book was how the characters worked together in order to solve the mystery. Olivia, Gabriel, and Ricky have been through a lot in the months that they’ve know each other so it was nice to see them still being able to put their trust in each other. I know it was hard for all three of them at times, but they pushed through and managed to show everyone that they’re better together than apart. 

If you’re looking for a mystery series with a heavy dose of the fantastical, I’d highly recommend giving this series a try – starting with Omens (review here). This series can be highly suspenseful at times and take twists and turns that managed to keep me on the edge of my seat. If Armstrong wasn’t already one of my favourite authors, she’d be well on her way to becoming one after this series.

Continue reading “Rituals by Kelley Armstrong”

February TBR

If I haven’t proven it by now, I’ve got to admit that I’m not very good at following my TBRs. That being said, here are the books I hope to get to in February. There are a couple here that I didn’t get to in January and a couple new reads that I plan on getting to this month. Without rambling on too much, here are the books that I plan on reading in February 2020:

**For anyone who’s discovered my TBR system for the first time, I’ve organized the books on my TBR by Physical Books, AudioBooks, and eBooks.**

 

Continue reading “February TBR”

January Wrap Up

I have to admit, I didn’t read many of the books I planned to this month. Instead, I found myself getting pretty sick and not having the energy to read much of anything. That being said, I’m satisfied with the amount of reading I got done – all things considered. Sometimes all you need to do is sleep the week away because you’re not feeling well. Sure this cuts down on reading time, but it’s worth it in the end.

Oh, and I got a couple puppy cuddles so I can’t really complain too much.

 

 

Without further ado, here’s my reading stats for this month:


For reference: Physical books, eBooks, and AudioBooks.

Total books completed: 9

Total pages read: 3,666 ( 407 avg. pages per book)

Completed Books:

  1. Omens by Kelley Armstrong (Cainsville, Book 1)[4.75 stars]
  2. Visions by Kelley Armstrong (Cainsville, Book 2)[4.75 stars]
  3. Deceptions by Kelley Armstrong (Cainsville, Book 3)[5 stars]
  4. Betrayals by Kelley Armstrong (Cainsville, Book 4)[5 stars]
  5. Headliners by Lucy Parker (London Celebrities, Book 5)[5 stars]
  6. The Devil’s Apprentice by Kenneth B. Andersen (The Great Devil Wars, Book 1)[4.5 stars]
  7. Rituals by Kelley Armstrong (Cainsville, Book 5)[4 stars]
  8. The Die of Death by Kenneth B. Andersen (The Great Devil Wars, Book 2)[4 stars]
  9. Drowning by Steven M Cross [3.75 stars]

Dedicated Blog Posts:

  1. Nightfall by Shannon Messenger
  2. Omens by Kelley Armstrong
  3. Visions by Kelley Armstrong
  4. Deceptions by Kelley Armstrong
  5. Betrayals by Kelley Armstrong
  6. The Devil’s Apprentice by Kenneth B. Andersen
  7. Headliners by Lucy Parker
  8. The Die of Death by Kenneth B. Andersen
  9. Drowning by Steven M Cross

 

Continue reading “January Wrap Up”