Genre: Fantasy & Magic

Espresso tour ARC review: Spells & Sorcery

Posted October 21, 2016 by Emily in Blog Tour, Review / 3 Comments

Espresso tour ARC review: Spells & Sorcery

Espresso tour ARC review: Spells & SorcerySpells and Sorcery by S. Usher Evans
Series: Lexie Carrigan Chronicles #1
Published by Sun's Golden Ray Publishing on October 4th 2016
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy & Magic
Pages: 386
Format: Paperback
Source: Free for Review
Buy on Amazon
Goodreads
four-stars

You have magic.
One sentence, three words, four syllables. Enough to change my life forever. And I'm not talking about the whole spells and sorcery thing.

Lexie Carrigan thought the weirdest thing about her was she preferred watching documentaries and reading the newspaper to reality TV and Twitter. But on the eve of her fifteenth birthday, her aunt and sisters drop a bomb--she's magical.
Now the girl who never made waves is blowing up her nightstand and trying to keep from wreaking havoc on her school. When a kind stranger shows up with all the answers, Lexie hopes he'll be able to help her control her newfound powers. But Gavon may not be as kind as he seems, and soon Lexie finds out that being magical is the least weird thing about her.
Spells and Sorcery is the first YA fantasy from S. Usher Evans, author of the Razia series, the Madion War Trilogy and Empath.

I read a few reviews (when will I learn?!?) and I talked to a few people. It made me a little concerned. I really wanted to like this book. Now that I’ve read it, I see their concerns. I really do. There are a few issues. This book is a really slow starter. I see that some people have chosen to not finish it and I totally get it. The first 50 pages or so are full of set up and back story but not much happens. However, the end totally makes up for it. Stick with it to the end! It’s worth it.

At first, Lexie’s relationships with her Aunt and her sister’s were difficult for me to understand. I think it’s because it is very rocky. I’ve always had a great relationship with my parents and my sister. However, it would be totally different if I had to move in with an aunt. You can bet it would have been contentious. That realization completely flipped the way I saw Lexie’s interactions with her family.

This book was so much more than I expected.

For a long time I wasn’t sure where it was going. I could tell that something was building but I honestly had no idea what. This book had a solid ending that made me anxious for the next book.

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About the Author

Whitney Evans Sush

S. Usher Evans is an author, blogger, and witty banter aficionado. Born in Pensacola, Florida, she left the sleepy town behind for the fast-paced world of Washington, D.C.. There, she somehow landed jobs with BBC, Discovery Channel, and National Geographic Television before finally settling into a “real job” as an IT consultant. After a quarter life crisis at age 27, she decided consulting was for the birds and rekindled a childhood passion for writing novels. She sold everything she owned and moved back to Pensacola, where she currently resides with her two dogs, Zoe and Mr. Biscuit.

Evans is the author of the Razia series, Madion War Trilogy, and Empath, published by Sun’s Golden Ray Publishing.

Author links: 
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Giveaways

Tour Wide Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Paperback copy of Spells and Sorcery + swag

Blog Only Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

ebook copy of Spells and Sorcery

 

 

four-stars

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Rockstar ARC Review: Labyrinth Lost

Posted September 5, 2016 by Emily in Blog Tour, Review / 2 Comments

Rockstar ARC Review: Labyrinth Lost

Rockstar ARC Review: Labyrinth LostLabyrinth Lost by Zoraida Córdova
Series: Brooklyn Brujas #1
Published by Sourcebooks Fire on September 6th 2016
Genres: folklore, Young Adult
Pages: 336
Format: Paperback
Source: Free for Review
Buy on Amazon
Goodreads
four-half-stars

"Enchanting and complex. Every page is filled with magic."-Danielle Paige, New York Times best-selling author of Dorothy Must Die
Nothing says Happy Birthday like summoning the spirits of your dead relatives.
Alex is a bruja, the most powerful witch in a generation...and she hates magic. At her Deathday celebration, Alex performs a spell to rid herself of her power. But it backfires. Her whole family vanishes into thin air, leaving her alone with Nova, a brujo boy she can't trust. A boy whose intentions are as dark as the strange marks on his skin.
The only way to get her family back is to travel with Nova to Los Lagos, a land in-between, as dark as Limbo and as strange as Wonderland...
Praise for Labyrinth Lost:
"Zoraida Cordova's prose enchants from start to finish. Labyrinth Lost is pure magic." -Melissa Grey, author of The Girl at Midnight
"Magical and empowering, Labyrinth Lost is an incredible heroine's journey filled with mythos come to life; but at its heart, honors the importance of love and family." -Cindy Pon, author of Serpentine and Silver Phoenix
"A brilliant brown-girl-in-Brooklyn update on Alice in Wonderland and Dante's Inferno. Very creepy, very magical, very necessary." -Daniel Jose Older, author of Shadowshaper
"Labyrinth Lost is a magical story of love, family, and finding yourself. Enchanting from start to finish." -Amy Tintera, author of Ruined."

This book was such a breath of fresh air. Zoraida Córdova introduced me to a brand new culture and mythos and I loved every second of it. It’s well written, engrossing and very very creepy. Even if the setting was unfamiliar to me, the story was absolutely universal. Everyone struggles to find their own place in the world.

I loved how Alex is pushing back against against her future and her family. That fear of growing up to be exactly like your mother or your sister is something I still struggle with. It’s hard to find yourself and your own way when you are under pressure from your family. Alex handles this pressure in a really unique way. Instead of recognizing and accepting the magic inside her, she rejects it and casts a spell to rid herself of her magic with unexpected consequences.

There are few things that I love more than watching a character grow and change in a book. Character growth is exactly why I love series so much more than stand alones. I love the progression from where a character starts out to where they are going and the ability to watch them become who they are meant to be. Labyrinth Lost features so much character growth! I loved it!

After a string of disappointing reads, this one really got me out of my slump. I can’t say enough good things about it.

zoraida_vlc_photo2About the Author

Zoraida Córdova is the author of The Vicious Deep trilogy, the On the Verge series, and Labyrinth Lost.

She loves black coffee, snark, and still believes in magic. She is a New Yorker at heart and is currently working on her next novel. Send her a tweet @Zlikeinzorro

Website | Instagram | Twitter | Facebook | Tumblr | YouTube | Goodreads

 

Giveaway Details:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

3 winners will receive a finished copy of LABYRINTH LOST, US Only.

Tour Schedule

Week One:

8/29/2016Brittany’s Book RamblesInterview
8/30/2016125Pages Review
8/31/2016Once Upon A TwilightGuest Post
9/1/2016Owl Always Be ReadingReview
9/2/2016Me, My Shelf and IInterview

Week Two:

9/5/2016Emily Reads EverythingReview
9/6/2016The Book NutGuest Post
9/7/2016Take Me Away To A Great ReadReview
9/8/2016Wandering Bark BooksInterview
9/9/2016Lost in Ever AfterReview

four-half-stars

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ARC Review: Elite by Mercedes Lackey

ARC Review: Elite by Mercedes Lackey

Elite by Mercedes Lackey Series: Hunter #2 on September 6th 2016 Genres: Fantasy, Fantasy & Magic, Young Adult Pages: 368 Format: Paperback Source: Free for Review Buy on Amazon Goodreads Joy wants nothing more than to live and Hunt in Apex City without a target on her back. But a dangerous new mission assigned by her uncle, the city’s Prefect, may make that impossible. In addition to her new duties as one of the Elite, Joy is covertly running patrols in the abandoned tunnels and storm sewers under Apex Central. With her large pack of magical hounds, she can fight the monsters breaking through the barriers with the strength of three hunters. Her new assignment takes a dark turn when she finds a body in the sewers: a Psimon with no apparent injury or cause of death. Reporting the incident makes Joy the uncomfortable object of PsiCorp’s scrutiny—the organization appears more interested in keeping her quiet than investigating. With her old enemy Ace still active in Hunts and the appearance of a Folk Mage who seems to have a particular interest in her, Joy realizes that the Apex conspiracy she uncovered before her Elite trials is anything but gone. As the body count rises, she has no choice but to seek answers. Joy dives into the mysterious bowels of the city, uncovering secrets with far-reaching consequences for PsiCorp… and […]

Posted August 29, 2016 by Emily in Review / 1 Comment
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ARC Review: Crystal Crowned by Elise Kova

ARC Review: Crystal Crowned by Elise Kova

Crystal Crowned by Elise Kova Series: Air Awakens #5 Published by Silver Wing Press on July 12th 2016 Genres: Epic, Young Adult Pages: 414 Format: Paperback Source: Free for Review Buy on Amazon Long live Solaris. One bloodthirsty ruler has been overthrown by another, casting the shadow of death over the Solaris Empire. Vhalla Yarl stands upon the stage of fate, prepared to do battle one final time. Fragile alliances will be tested and new bonds will be formed as the world is reshaped. She fights as the champion of peace, but when the night is darkest will she be able to pay the price of a new dawn? About the Author Elise Kova has always had a profound love of fantastical worlds. Somehow, she managed to focus on the “real world” long enough to graduate with a MasterÂ’s in Business Administration before crawling back under her favorite writing blanket to conceptualize her next magic system. She currently lives in St. Petersburg, Florida, and when sheÂ’s not writing can be found playing video games, watching anime, or talking with readers on social media. She is the author of the Air Awakens Series as well as the upcoming Loom Saga (Keymaster, 2016). Endings are bittersweet. It’s hard to say goodbye to characters that you have fallen in love with. It’s hard to know that you can’t read a series again for […]

Posted July 12, 2016 by Emily in Review / 0 Comments
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ARC Review: Water’s Wrath

ARC Review: Water’s Wrath

Water’s Wrath by Elise Kova Series: Air Awakens #4 Published by Silver Wing Press on April 26th 2016 Genres: Epic, Fantasy & Magic, Young Adult Pages: 378 Format: Paperback Source: Free for Review Buy on Amazon Librarian turned sorcerer. Sorcerer turned hero. Hero turned puppet. The Solaris Empire found victory in the North and, at the cost of her heart and her innocence, Vhalla Yarl has earned her freedom. But the true fight is only beginning as the secret forces that have been lurking in the shadows, tugging at the strings of Vhalla’s fate, finally come to light. Nowhere is safe, and Vhalla must tread carefully or else she’ll fall into the waiting arms of her greatest foe. Or former lover. Have you started reading this series yet?!? I can’t stress enough that if you like fantasy, this is a must read. Check out what I said about all the previous books. Air Awakens Fire Falling Earth’s End Water’s Wrath is an immediate continuation of Earth’s End. This is a series folks, you have to read the one before it. If you haven’t you will be completely lost. Yeah, now you are 4 books behind. However, you can still catch up before the final chapter, Crystal Crowned, releases! This series is slowly getting darker. It started out light and fluffy but with every twist and turn Elise Kova is […]

Posted April 25, 2016 by Emily in Review / 0 Comments
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Water’s Wrath Tour

Water’s Wrath Tour

Water’s Wrath by Elise Kova Series: Air Awakens #4 on April 26. 2016 Genres: Young Adult, romance, Fantasy & Magic Format: Paperback Buy on Amazon Librarian turned sorcerer. Sorcerer turned hero. Hero turned puppet. The Solaris Empire found victory in the North and, at the cost of her heart and her innocence, Vhalla Yarl has earned her freedom. But the true fight is only beginning as the secret forces that have been lurking in the shadows, tugging at the strings of VhallaÂ’s fate, finally come to light. Nowhere is safe, and Vhalla must tread carefully or else sheÂ’ll fall into the waiting arms of her greatest foe. Or former lover. My review is yet to come. It will definitely be up before this book releases on April 26th! However today I want to share with you some gifs that encompassed the range of emotions I had while reading the Air Awakens’ series. Elise loves to play with our emotions and has a way of making me laugh one second and scream the next. She’s a master manipulator in the best way. The series starts off like this Then before you know it One second you are on top of the world   The next she hits your where it hurts.   First you love everything   Then WHAM   This series keeps you guessing! I love all the twists […]

Posted April 20, 2016 by Emily in Blog Tour, Review / 1 Comment
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Review: Earth’s End by Elise Kova

Review: Earth’s End by Elise Kova

Earth’s End by Elise Kova Series: Air Awakens #3 Published by Silver Wing Press on February 11th 2016 Genres: Epic, Fantasy & Magic, Young Adult Pages: 350 Format: ebook, Paperback Buy on Amazon A woman awoken in air, a soldier forged by fire, a weapon risen from blood. Vhalla Yarl has made it to the warfront in the North. Forged by blood and fire, she has steeled her heart for the final battle of the Solaris EmpireÂ’s conquest. The choices before Vhalla are no longer servitude or freedom, they are servitude or death. The stakes have never been higher as the Emperor maintains his iron grip on her fate, holding everything Vhalla still has left to lose in the balance. Book Three of the Air Awakens Series This is the third book of a series. I’ve linked my other two reviews below. Air Awakens Fire Falling My Earth’s End reading experience was filled with firsts for me. I preordered it from Amazon (only my second preorder ever!) but it didn’t arrive on the release day. Luckily, I had won a giveaway from Melissa at The Reader and the Chef a while back, so the e-book file arrived on Thursday right when I needed it. Then, I read the entire book in an intense two hour sprint. I’ve never read a book on release day before! In the past, I’ve […]

Posted February 22, 2016 by Emily in Review / 0 Comments
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Happy Birthday Earth’s End!

Happy Birthday Earth’s End!

TODAY IS THE DAY WE ARE ALL WAITING FOR! EARTH’S END RELEASED TODAY I’m so excited about this book. I’ve been waiting for it since before Fire Falling released. This is the only book that I have preordered so far in 2016. Hopefully, I’m reading it right now. If you check out nothing else in this post, read the Tales from the Front! I feel so lucky that I got a chance to participate. Every single one is a different prospective and tells a little about what’s happening between Fire Falling and Earth’s End. If you read them all, you get a glimpse of the bigger picture! There’s also an Earth’s End Excerpt that is definitely worth reading if you are still up in the air about purchasing this book. Though, how could you be? Tales from the Front Leading up to the release of EarthÂ’s End I have been providing bloggers, at random, with exclusive pieces of content – alternate POV snippets – that tell different and new sides to the Air Awakens story. The full list of POVs (in chronological order of story) are: Fritz – Read By Nicka Aldrik – Live. Love. Read. YA Elecia – Emily Reads Everything Aldrik – Dani Reviews Things Fritz – The Reader and the Chef Reale – Mad for Books Emperor Solaris – Sandra the Book Worm Jax – IrisJexx Baldair […]

Posted February 11, 2016 by Emily in Blog Tour, Events and Features / 1 Comment
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Buddy Read Review: Ruin and Rising

Buddy Read Review: Ruin and Rising

Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo Series: Grisha #3 Published by Henry Holt and Co. on June 17th 2014 Genres: Fantasy & Magic, Fiction, Young Adult Pages: 422 Format: hardcover Buy on Amazon The capital has fallen. The Darkling rules Ravka from his shadow throne. Now the nation’s fate rests with a broken Sun Summoner, a disgraced tracker, and the shattered remnants of a once-great magical army. Deep in an ancient network of tunnels and caverns, a weakened Alina must submit to the dubious protection of the Apparat and the zealots who worship her as a Saint. Yet her plans lie elsewhere, with the hunt for the elusive firebird and the hope that an outlaw prince still survives. Alina will have to forge new alliances and put aside old rivalries as she and Mal race to find the last of Morozova’s amplifiers. But as she begins to unravel the Darkling’s secrets, she reveals a past that will forever alter her understanding of the bond they share and the power she wields. The firebird is the one thing that stands between Ravka and destruction—and claiming it could cost Alina the very future sheÂ’s fighting for. I had the honor of finishing my Buddy Read through the Grishaverse with Ruin and Rising with Jade from Bedtime Bookworm . Then Grishaverse Expert, Brittany, fromBrittanyÂ’s Book Rambles chose our stopping points,  listened in to our twitter […]

Posted January 26, 2016 by Emily in Review, Special Feature / 1 Comment
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Air Awakens Tales from the Front POV 7

Air Awakens Tales from the Front POV 7

Today I am beyond thrilled to be able to share with you the next installment of Elise Kova’s Tales from the front. I’ve known I was going to have a chance to do this for months and it has been so hard not to tell everyone I know. Trust me my family has gotten sick of hearing about it.I loved Air Awakens and Fire Falling and I’ve been eagerly anticipating Earth’s End. I’ve had my preorder in for months. The wait has been hard on all of us. Luckily, we have Elise tormenting us with clues about what’s going to be revealed in Earth’s End. Have you been following these? Elise is a diabolical genius. What Is Tales from the Front? Tales from the Front is a series of notes, alternate POV chapters, and other teasers that take place from just before the end of Fire Falling (Air Awakens, #2) to the beginning of EarthÂ’s End (Air Awakens, #3). They are being sent out at random with the idea that bloggers and readers can ban together to put the puzzle pieces together to find out a different side to the story and uncover truths about the characters. Please, everyone, spread this like wildfire! Bloggers and readers are invited to re-post information so long as they link back to the individual who posted it originally. In fact, this is generally encouraged, as […]

Posted January 24, 2016 by Emily in Events and Features / 9 Comments
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