Book Review

ARC Book Review: Kingdom of the Wicked (Kingdom of the Wicked #1) by Kerri Maniscalco

Rating: ☆☆☆☆ 1/2
Audience: Young adult paranormal fantasy romance
Length: 448 pages
Author: Kerri Maniscalco
Publisher: Jimmy Patterson
Release Date: October 27th, 2020
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Kerri Maniscalco introduces her next series, a dark tale of a beautiful young witch, a troubled demon, and their epic romance, set against a 19th century Italian backdrop.

Emilia and her twin sister Victoria are streghe – witches who live secretly among humans, avoiding notice and persecution. One night, Victoria misses dinner service at the family’s renowned Sicilian restaurant. Emilia soon finds the body of her beloved twin…desecrated beyond belief. Devastated, Emilia sets out to discover who did this, and to seek vengeance at any cost—even if it means using dark magic that’s been long forbidden.

Then Emilia meets Wrath, the outlier among the seven demon brethren, always choosing duty over pleasure. He’s been tasked by his master with investigating a series of women’s murders on the island. When Emilia and Wrath’s fates collide, it’s clear this disturbing mystery will take a bewitching turn.

Thank you to Jimmy Patterson and Netgalley for the gifted eARC. All opinions are my own!

YOU DON’T KNOW IT YET, BUT YOU NEED THIS BOOK.

I don’t even know how to start this review, I LOVED this book y’all! I enjoyed Maniscalco’s first series, Stalking Jack the Ripper, but mainly for Thomas Cresswell. Seriously, don’t ask me what I think about Audrey Rose. That being said, it made me initially nervous to read this because I worried for the main character again.

And I can say, for at least this first book, I am wrong. I adored Emilia as the main protagonist. She was bold and fierce. Made her own decisions based on what she knew and was told, and yeah, maybe ran off into danger a time or two, but what heroine doesn’t? Emilia was the missing puzzle piece I needed to love this.

Enter in, our Prince of Hell, WRATH. Ohhhh can Maniscalco right a love interest amazingly well. I feel a solidified new book boyfriend coming in over the course of this series. I loved the banter and enemies to lovers dynamic. Being forced to work together to solve witch murders led to some close knit and quiet scenes that I JUST CAN’T HANDLE. Part of his character is left very open-ended and I will sit here anxiously waiting to know if some of my thoughts/assumptions are true.

May be wondering why the half-star take down? For one of the characters involved I could spot from a mile away that they were one of the villains. I didn’t like how quick that was to pick out from the get-go. What I did love was meeting all of Wrath’s brothers. Who knew I was so interested in the Princes from hell? All so cunning and manipulative. Filled with arrogance and doing as they please. Couldn’t help myself, I loved them (and hated them, ya know) too.

There’s a lot of action, heat, and mystery involved here. I was absolutely entrenched in this Italian backdrop atmosphere. It fit this story well and only increased my adoration. Give me book two ASAP.

Overall audience notes:

  • Young adult paranormal fantasy romance
  • Language: very little
  • Romance: kisses / make-outs; a scene where characters are undressed, but that’s as far as it goes
  • Violence: murder, torture, animal attacks, physical altercations
  • Content warnings: loss of a loved one

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Top 10 Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday: Places Mentioned In Books That I’d Like to Visit

Helllloooo Top Ten Tuesday!

I had a really tough time with this one! Mostly because a lot of the books I read involve war. And nobody wants to travel there during hard times, ya know?

So, let’s all operate under the assumption that there is peace in the land and I’m going on a summer holiday.

Velaris

A Court of Mist and Fury (ACOTAR #2) by SJM

I am completely predictable and I am okay with this. Velaris is the first place I’d visit. It’s the City of Starlight! I would love to visit all of the different city squares.

Jurassic Park

by Michael Crichton

I am obsessed with dinosaurs. Have been since I was a little. And all I want in life is to go to a park (not be attacked) and look at dinosaurs. Why hasn’t science caught up to this yet!?

Caraval

by Stephanie Garber

Remember, it’s only a game…and it’s a game I want to play! How cool would a travelling magical carnival type mystery game be? SO COOL. I would find a way to get a ticket and I would be happy just being there.

Orynth

Kingdom of Ash (ToG #7) by SJM

I really only want to go here to meet Rowan, but can you blame me?

Red London

A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

I loved this series and would love to travel like Kell through all of the London’s! Well, except Black London, of course.

Warcross

by Marie Lu

In such a digital age it would be awesome to have a game like Warcross to play. I feel it would be like the Sims games, but even more realistic. Maybe something along the lines of Second Life from The Office (please someone tell me they know that reference haha).

Italy

Love & Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch

While this isn’t a fantasy or exotic location, I have always wanted to travel here. And Love & Gelato gave me all the wanderlust to travel the countrysides of Italy.

Grishaverse

Shadow & Bone Trilogy, SoC Duology and Nikolai Duology
by Leigh Bardugo

Using only this cover for the entire world, but put me anywhere in this land and I will be a happy camper. Though, I’d be an even happier camper if you put me in Nikolai’s palace…

Le Cirque des Rèves

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

The Circus of Dreams — oh how I would love to go to this circus too! I clearly have an affinity for traveling troops of magic. This is one of my favorite stand-alone fantasies and I highly recommend it!

Weep

Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor

This duology was so enchanting. And the city of Weep is intriguing. Checking out the libaries, seeing the citadel with the Gods. What a holiday!

Do you want to travel to any of these places too? Let’s go together! Let me know in the comments. Happy Tuesday!

Book Review

Review: Love & Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch

Love & Gelato

 

Rating: ☆☆☆.5
Audience: YA+, no language in English (one word in Italian is used a few times), some kissing, no violence
Length: 389 pages
Author: Jenna Evans Welch
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: May 3rd, 2016
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

WANDERLUST.

Oh this book is sooooo cute and a quick read. Just what I was looking for!

This book also gave my major wanderlust to see Italy. And to eat gelato. Yum.

The characters were adorable and I wanted to give everyone a hug to make the feel better. I enjoyed that even with death being a focus, it wasn’t heavy. There was a light for Lina to continue and enjoy her time even though her Mom is no longer there.

Ren made me have all the dreamy eyes. He’s a precious cinnamon roll. The interactions between Lina and Ren made me smile and even laugh out loud on occasion.

Also, Howard. I love him too. And think he deserves all the love for his heartbreak too.

Great read. One Italian curse word is used, no violence and a few kissing scenes. An appropriate read for younger audiences.