I had so many mixed feelings when this book was announce. My initial reaction was “Do we really need another Beauty and the Beast retelling? (This should tell you how bad my book slump is. We ALWAYS need retellings especially of Beauty and the Beast) followed by “This book is way too hyped to be any good.” Boy was my initial thoughts wrong. I found this book on sale on Amazon (thank you Amazon) AND OH MY GOD, I DEVOURED IT! From the second I purchased this book, I was glued to my Kindle app. I refused to sleep until I got to the end (something that rarely happens anymore). “A Curse So Dark and Lonely” follows Prince Rhen who is cursed. Rhen has to get someone to fall in love with him or he turns into a beast at the end of the season and terrorizes everyone around him. Rhen’s only guard, Grey, helps Rhen by kidnapping girls and bringing them to the castle. During one of these trips, Harper sees Grey trying to kidnap a girl and decides to step in. Instead she ends up being kidnapped and brought to the castle. Unlike most of Rhen’s victims, Harper is stubborn and strong. And for Rhen, she may be his only hope of helping his people. This book was everything I loved from “A Court of Thorns and Roses” and “Cruel Beauty” mixed in one. I LOVED THIS BOOK SO SO SO MUCH. Just read it! If you are a fan of fantasy or retellings you definitely need to read this.
I started reading “The Moonlight Masquerade” as soon as I got home from work. Cinderella was not one of my favourite fairytales but I loved the idea of the ball. I was looking forward to seeing how it would be depicted here and Rachel Morgan did not disappoint. Ella makes the decision that she would lie to the Godmother that she will kill the prince. I get that she wants her freedom but it worries me that she would risk tangling with one of the most dangerous magical beings around. Anyway, so the Godmother helps Ella go to the ball where she needs to pretend to kill the prince, keep away from her step-mother and step-sisters AND try to avoid the vampires looking for her. I loved that this is a Cinderella adaptation but it is such a loose one that the City of Wishes series can stand on its own merits. The plot is fast-paced, the writing is excellent and the worldbuilding always leaves me awed. Definitely give this a try if you’re looking for something fun and not too long.
This book was the main reason for me going back to try “When Dimple Met Rishi” again. Dimple has made her thoughts on marriage clear repeatedly. It’s a sexist institution and as a feminist, she wants no part of it. Rishi, on the other hand, is far more traditional and would love to marry Dimple (even if they are still fairly young but okay). Eventually things come to a head when Rishi confronts Dimple about her issues with marriage. In return, Dimple wants to “think things over” Here’s the thing though. From my very first read of “When Dimple Met Rishi”, I wondered where any sort of relationship with this two would go. Dimple and Rishi are opposites and it is tough for me to imagine them ending up together. This was a fast read but incredibly enjoyable. I am glad to finally have answers to my questions about Dimple and Rishi’s future.
The Vampire Trap follows Dex and Ella as they try to lure in the vampires with Elle as bait. Elle is desperate to know how the vampires know her mother while Dex wants more knowledge on the “Allegiant” vampires. Meanwhile, Elle’s step-mother just becomes more and more awful. This chapter is far more action-packed than I expected. There are several plot twists and I loved seeing more of this world. These characters are witty and well-written. It is such a delight watching Elle go out with Dex and his friends. I would love to see more of Dex and his world. If you’re a fan of fantasy then I definitely recommend you give this a try. This is a unique twist on the Cinderella fairytale which I enjoyed immensely.
“The Memory Thief” is an urban fantasy Cinderella retelling. Set in a world full of fae, vampires and werewolves, “The Memory Thief” follows Elle, a human with the unique power to remove memories. Elle spends her days as a slave to her step-mother while her nights are spent removing memories in return for Essence. Essence is a substance that will allow Elle to purchase a wish in order to escape her vile step-mother. Elle’s plan is on track until she runs into a vampire who takes a sudden interest in her. When the vampire goes after Elle’s family, she has no choice but to fight back if she wants to keep her plans (and her Essence) a secret. This was an intriguing read that I devoured in one sitting (and then immediately started on the next part because I just COULD NOT STOP!). The world-building is amazing. The plot is intriguing and I love that Rachel Morgan has a series that includes vampires (I’ve been waiting for her to write vampires since her Creepy Hollow series ended). I cannot wait to read the next part of this serial.
Dimple is passionate about coding much to the disapproval of her traditional parents. It seems like all Dimple’s mother wants for her is for Dimple to find the Perfect Indian Husband. Ideally someone who believes in all the same traditions as Dimple’s family does. Dimple, on the other hand, is much more excited about her future at Stanford University. When Dimple’s parents let her go to Insomnia Con, a program where you design and code an app, it looks like they are finally starting to respect her and her dreams. What Dimple does not expect is the strange guy who walks up to her and greets her with “Hello, my future wife”. The exact opposite of Dimple, Rishi is eager to please his parents and follow family traditions. His parents and Dimple’s parents have decided that the two of them will make a great match. Rishi is more than willing to go ahead with their plans. However what Rishi did not expect was that his future wife would have no idea of these plans. Dimple and Rishi do not get along AT ALL. But when they are paired to work together for Insomnia Con, they have to put aside the animosity if they want to win. This was a cute, feel-good read that I enjoyed. While I only read this book so that I could read “As Kismet Would Have It”, I liked seeing how Dimple and Rishi fell in love. I instantly hated Rishi the first time I read this book and he was the reason I stopped reading. However after finishing it I was glad to have gotten to know his character more. This is a well-written book that I suggest to anyone who enjoys contemporary YA. I cannot wait to read “There’s Something About Sweetie.”
Francesca Rossi is the daughter of the biggest mobster boss in Chicago. Her entire life has been planned. No work, no college. Just marriage to her childhood best friend, Angelo Bandini and then she needs to pop out children. That is the way it has always been in the Chicago outfit. However things don’t go as plan when Senator Wolfe Keaton spots Francesca and decides that she will be the perfect revenge for him. Wolfe steals the kiss that Francesca intends on sharing with Angelo before going to Francesca’s house and stealing her. Wolfe has hated Francesca’s father for ruining his life and his family. Taking her away from her sheltered life and ruining all the plans her father has intended for her is the best way for Wolfe to avenge his family. I saw this book recommended on Audible and was not really interested. So I do not know how I ended up purchasing a copy after seeing it on Goodreads. However I started this book and could not put it down (so much so that I now have an ebook copy AND an audiobook). This was an interesting read with a unique plot and beautifully crafted characters. I absolutely detested Wolfe however it was difficult to not feel sympathy for him and root for his relationship with Francesca throughout this novel. If you are a fan of romance books, definitely give this a try. You will not regret it.
Every day Khalid marries a young girl and kills her soon after. When Shahrzad’s best friend becomes one of Khalid’s latest victims, Shahrzad vows that she will avenge her murder. Shahzad volunteers to be the next bride. She will not only stay alive, she will also kill the king. Night after night, Shahrzad entertains Khalid with stories, stopping just before cliffhanger endings. Intrigued, Khalid postpones her murder each and every day. However it isn’t long before Shahrzad starts to fall in love with her new husband. “The Wrath and the Dawn” was a well-written read that I enjoyed immensely. I loved the world building and this story sucked me in immediately. At first I thought the whole hate to love plot was overdone but it is executed beautifully here. You can clearly see the chemistry between Shahrzad and Khalid and it is hard not to root for their romance. Shahrzad’s stories are as captivating to the reader as they are to Khalid. This is an unforgettable read that I recommend to anyone who enjoys YA romance.
THE WALLFLOWERS ARE BACK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Just give me a minute. Okay I’m good. “Devil’s Daughter” follows Phoebe who is the daughter of Evie and St Vincent from “Devil in Winter”. Now I was already excited to read this since I remember mentions of Phoebe as a kid in “Scandal In Spring” and I love West’s character. But when I started this book, I was beyond thrilled. Phoebe is at West’s estate for the wedding of her brother to his cousin. What do weddings have? Tons of people. Like all of Evie’s friends and their kids. I fangirled so hard over this book. Honestly I kind of wanted more wallflower moments but I’m still pleased with what I did get. Anyway, on to the main characters of this book.
When Phoebe meets West, she is instantly drawn to him. Until she finds out who he is. Phoebe is not West’s biggest fan as he bullied her late husband when they were in school together. However it is not long before she realizes that 1) he is no longer that person and 2) she is REALLY attracted to him (I don’t blame her. I’m also attracted to him and he pretty much only exists in my imagination). West is also attracted to Phoebe however he knows that he has a tarnished past and finds her to be above him. He would not let the mistakes of his youth spoil her and her family’s reputation. But Phoebe wants West, any way she can have him. I had the ebook copy of this book and I found myself reading it non-stop. I was really interested in this story. I loved that West reminded me so much of Leo from the Hathaways and Phoebe reminded me of Evie in “Devil In Winter”. It was like my two favourite Lisa Kleypas series had a baby together and this was the amazing end result. I CANNOT WAIT for the next book in this series.
It took me two tries to read this book (ah the powers of a book slump). On my first attempt, I got distracted and bored within the first two chapters. Picking up on attempt two, I devoured this book. “Hello Stranger” follows Dr Garrett Gibson, the only female doctor in England and her stalker friend, Ethan Ransom. Ethan has been following Garrett around during her nightly visits to ensure that she is safe. It is not long before sparks fly between these two and they indulge in an intimate night together. Ransom knows that his world- and him- are too dangerous for Garrett so they both decide to stay away from each other. However Ransom’s enemies soon find out about Garrett and she is drawn into Ransom’s criminal world. My favourite thing about this book was that Garrett was not a damsel in distress. She saves Ransom, Ransom saves her and throughout their relationship she is treated as an equal. She is never fazed by Ransom’s mysterious underground life and I loved that. This was an incredibly well-written book and I am only sad that I did not read it sooner. Curse you book slump.