Book Review

Book Review: A Dance with the Fae Prince (Married to Magic #2) by Elise Kova

Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Audience: Fantasy Romance
Length: 374 pages
Author: Elise Kova
Publisher: Silver Wing Press
Release Date: August 19th, 2021
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

She knew her hand in marriage would be sold. She had no idea a fae prince was the buyer.

Katria swore she’d never fall in love. She’s seen what “love” means through the cruelty of her family. So when she’s married off to the mysterious Lord Fenwood for a handsome price, all Katria wants is a better life than the one she’s leaving. Feelings are off the table.

But her new husband makes not falling in love difficult.

As their attraction begins to grow, so too do the oddities within her new life: strange rules, screams in the night, and attacks by fae that Katria never thought were real. When she witnesses a ritual not meant for human eyes, Katria finds herself spirited away to the land of Midscape.

Surviving the fae wilds as a human is hard enough. Katria must survive as a human who accidently pilfered the magic of ancient kings – magic a bloodthirsty king is ready to kill her for in order to keep his stolen throne – and her new husband is the rightful heir in hiding.

The power to save the fae is in her hands. But who will save her from a love she vowed never to feel?

THIS COVER IS EVERYTHING.

I can’t help my obsession with this cover. It’s just gorgeous. Every time I pulled up this book to read I stared at it some more because I couldn’t have enough. It is what it is.

ANYWAYS, I guess I’ll discuss the book now.

The first half was realllll slow. Really slow. The romantic slow build up was working for me, but the plot slow build with the Fae lands was not. They kept clashing and I didn’t know how I was going to enjoy it by the end.

Cue the second half. Much appreciated that this got a lot of momentum and was actually interesting. Once the blindfolds were removed, hot dang the chemistry between Katria and Davien was finally able to take off. THANK HEAVENS.

After that it did become fairly predictable (it’s a Cinderella retelling). Which can be bad and good. I really did end up loving the romance between Katira and Davien and felt that passion and tension. They were pretty enigmatic and I felt caught up in Davien’s vivid green eyes myself (see, cover obsession acknowledgement prior). Katria also got a much needed character arc before my frustrations grew anymore. I’m really handing this star ranking over to the second half of this book. It’s whimsical, it’s romantic, and I do like the set-up for book three.

Overall audience notes:

  • Fantasy Romance / Retelling
  • Language: a little
  • Romance: kisses to brief open
  • Violence: physical altercations, weaponry, kidnapping, magical attacks
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: loss of loved ones, child abuse

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Book Review

Book Review: The Shadow Rising (The Wheel of Time #4) by Robert Jordan

Rating: ★★★★
Audience: Fantasy
Length: 940 pages
Author: Robert Jordan
Publisher: Tor Books
Release Date: September 15th, 1992
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

The seals of Shayol Ghul are weak now, and the Dark One reaches out. The Shadow is rising to cover humankind.

In Tar Valon, Min sees portents of hideous doom. Will the White Tower itself be broken?

In the Two Rivers, the Whitecloaks ride in pursuit of a man with golden eyes, and in pursuit of the Dragon Reborn.

In Cantorin, among the Sea Folk, High Lady Suroth plans the return of the Seanchan armies to the mainland.

In the Stone of Tear, the Lord Dragon considers his next move. It will be something no one expects, not the Black Ajah, not Tairen nobles, not Aes Sedai, not Egwene or Elayne or Nynaeve.

Against the Shadow rising stands the Dragon Reborn.

GETTING THERE.

Somewhere along the halfway point of this 1000 page saga, the book clicked. I finally felt like I am into this series and want to continue.

I love a good big fantasy that moves through multiple points of view, characters, and areas in the world. There’s a wild amount of things that happen, and you can feel everything starting to slowly connect. And getting to watch some character growth and big decisions being made. I like many of these storylines and that each character has a distinct voice. It’s easy to know who’s voice is speaking.

Yes, it’s definitely a slow haul. Highly recommend using the audio as a companion because it made it a bit quicker to fly through.

Overall audience notes:

  • Fantasy
  • Language: none
  • Romance: closed door
  • Violence: high

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Book Review

Book Review: The Stable Master’s Son (Sons of Somerset #2) by Mindy Burbidge Strunk

Rating: ☆☆
Audience: Regency Romance
Length: 221 pages
Author: Mindy Burbidge Strunk
Publisher: FiveJoys Press
Release Date: August 14th, 2021
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

She always dreamed of marrying a gentleman, not someone from the stables.

Edmund Jenkins’ life is on track. Through hard work and a fair amount of luck, he now owns an estate, and his horses are renowned throughout Somerset. His breeding business is on track to expand and everything as it should be. That is until he meets Miss Carter. His attraction to her is strong and immediate, but she cannot seem to see him as anything other than a groom.

As the daughter of a baron, Miss Elizabeth Carter never thought she would be a spinster, let alone have to work as a governess. When Lord Duhurst seems willing to make her an offer, complete with an estate and a title, Elizabeth is ready to seize the opportunity with both hands. If only she could stop thinking on Mr. Jenkins. He is not the man of her dreams. Or is he? But how could she ever make the life she had dreamed of with a man barely better off than servant?

As the time draws near for the banns to be posted, Elizabeth must decide if security or love is more important.

FRUSTRATION STATION.

I really wanted to love this. It just hit the mark on many things that I found myself skimming most of the book.

I did like Phillip. He felt like a real character who knew what he wanted and worked hard towards those goals. I like that Phillip made mistakes but also could apologize. He had some sweet moments with Elle and I was really pulling for him to see things through for his horses.

For Elle I felt eternally frustrated with her. She was wishy washy and hemming and hawing over every little thing Phillip (or anyone) did or said to her. I wanted her convictions to come through sooner and not in the closing chapter.

Phillip and Elle seemed to have chemistry, but for both of them, I felt like they were too involved in their own personal storylines. They took awhile to cross paths enough for me to be truly swept up in their romance. It’s a very short book and more purpose could’ve been put into the main plot line.

Overall audience notes:

  • Regency Romance
  • Language: none
  • Romance: kisses
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: loss of parents, stealing assets, impersonation and identity theft

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Book Review

ARC Book Review: Furysong (The Aurelian Cycle #3) by Rosaria Munda

Rating: ★★★★☆
Audience: YA Fantasy + Romance
Length: 496 pages
Author: Rosaria Munda
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons
Release Date: August 9th, 2022
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

In this explosive conclusion to the epic trilogy that began with Fireborne, Annie and Lee are fighting for their lives—and for each other—as invading dragonfire threatens to burn their home to the ground.

A new revolution is underway, and nobody will emerge unscathed.

In New Pythos, Griff is facing an execution by the dragonborn, who are furious at his betrayal. He has allies on both sides seeking to defy his fate, but the price of his freedom might come at a dear cost. And Delo will have to make a choice: follow his family, or finally surrender to his conscience.

Meanwhile, Annie must race home to hatch a plan to save her Guardians and their dragons. With Callipolis on the brink of collapse and the triarchy set to be reinstated, she may be the one person who can save the city—if she can overcome her own doubts about her future.

Lee is a revolutionary at heart, but now he’ll have to find a way to fight with diplomacy. Going up against the dragonborn court and a foreign princess, he faces a test of loyalty that sets his head against his heart.

As the fate of Callipolis darkens, Annie and Lee must determine what they are willing to sacrifice in order to save each other, defeat their enemies, and reclaim their home.

Thank you to Penguin Teen and Netgalley for the eARC.

EPIC.

This series is TOTALLY UNDERRATED AND EVERYONE SHOULD GO READ IT PLEASE.

Now with that business out of the way let me give a non-spoiler review.

I LOVED this story. It is slow for YA, but as someone who loves fantasy across the board I was into it. Packed with a punch from the get-go the action did not cease for awhile. I loved the drift it took into slower territory, where building of armies, tension, and romance was able to happen. I was absolutely smitten with both romances. Lee and Annie are too precious for this world. This incredible bond formed when they were orphaned children that grew into something unquantifiable. It was passionate and TEARS WERE SHED at some specific, not to be named scenes.

I also adored the romance between Griff and Delo. It had a whole different vibe to it with a changing of position and having to be let the festering anger burst before bonds could reform. I love the hope that came from between them even when things were at there bleakest.

Can we also discuss the side characters??! Holy cow they brought it too. Power has got to be one of my new favorites. He was everything I love about morally gray dynamics. Caught wanting to better his life, falling into unrequited love and more that I wish I could say. His scenes were next level.

And the plot is full of DRAGONS, politicking, action and more. I think this plot flowed really well and I truly didn’t know how things were going to end up working out in the end. I did nick 1/2 star because I wanted a little more *oopmh* in the ending (though I do promise it ends perfectly well and you will not throw your book). Besides that hard to nail down thought with the ending, I NEED Y’ALL TO PLEASE READ THIS SERIES.

Overall audience notes:

  • YA Fantasy + Romance
  • Language: some
  • Romance: closed-door
  • Violence: high
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: battle themes, loss of life, loss of loved ones, grief & depression depiction, near death experiences, torture, animal cruelty, fires, indentured servitude, harassment

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