Fiction Friday: Book Review- Now I Rise by Kiersten White (The Conqueror’s Saga, #2)

Now I Rise (The Conqueror's Saga, #2)Now I Rise by Kiersten White
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I had major doubts going into this book. It had been about a year or so since I read “As I Darken” and while I did enjoy it, I wasn’t sure that “Now I Rise” would be as good (second books rarely are).  I was wrong. “Now I Rise” was infinitely better and I cannot wait to read the next book in the series. Since I read “As I Darken” so long ago, I was sure that I wouldn’t remember much of the plot or the characters. In fact, I read about two pages before I realised I didn’t remember the events of the last novel (of course the only thing I remembered was the love triangle between Radu, Lada and Mehmed). Thankfully the novel recounted characters and events from the first book so I was able to read this without having to reread “As I Darken.”
“Now I Rise” follows Lada, Radu and Mehmed as they each go after the thing they want most. Lada wants to be prince of Wallachia, Radu wants to be respected by Mehmed (but any sort of positive attention from Mehmed makes Radu happy because he has an unhealthy obsession with Mehmed) and Mehmed just wants Constantinople. However for each of the characters to get what they want, they have to make difficult decisions- decisions that involve lies, betrayal or brutal deaths.
This book is nothing like what I would usually read. However there is just something about this series that drew me in and refuses to let go. I NEED to know more about these characters. Will Lada get her throne? Who will Mehmed choose? Will Radu ever grow a pair? (Can you tell he’s my least favourite Dracul sibling?) I need answers to these questions ASAP.
There was amazing character development in this novel. Both Dracul siblings see that their way is not always the best and they may need the other. Lada is as bloodthirsty in this novel as she was in “As I Darken”- but this time instead of just threatening people she is a girl of action and I loved seeing that side of her. She is fierce, she is vicious and it is incredible.
“Now I Rise” has a compelling plot and flawless writing which makes the book impossible to put down. Definitely get yourself a copy. NOW!

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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Fiction Friday: Book Review- Spellbound and Ever After by Nora Roberts

Spellbound & Ever AfterSpellbound & Ever After by Nora Roberts
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I think this book was a good read but just not a very realistic one. Both stories deal with the supernatural and of course love is the answer for these two couples. However while Nora Roberts normally uses these elements flawlessly, I found this novel difficult to follow.
The first story, “Spellbound” tells of a couple who have been separated through death and are now brought together. But while Bryna accepts their destiny together (since she has always known Calin is the one for her), Calin is far more disbelieving (which is ridiculous considering he had a childhood of the supernatural). However the story betwen Bryna and Calin is sweet and well-developed despite it’s relatively short length. I really enjoyed this story.
The second story, “Ever After” was just a really painful read. There was too much of insta-love and I did not find any of it believable. The characters seemed weak and I found the entire story to be over-done.
I warn anyone considering this book to proceed with caution.

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Fiction Friday: Book Review- Falling from the Sky by Sarina Bowen (Gravity #2)

Falling from the Sky (Gravity, #2)Falling from the Sky by Sarina Bowen
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Callie meets dashing and daring Hank for a few minutes before one of his jumps. While it is clear that she makes no impression on him, Hank definitely makes an impression on Callie. And then he gets in an accident that leads to them running into each other repeatedly.
While pre-injury Hank was dismissive of Callie, post-injury-Hank is pretty taken with her. Ever since losing his career, his girlfriend, his friends and his drive for life, Callie is the only one who sees him as a person and not as someone as a wheelchair. But Hank’s accident has left him with more than just physical scars and if he wants anything to do with his pretty doctor, he will need to overcome his own personal demons and Callie’s own issues too.
I thought this was a really great novel. Callie and Hank are an adorable couple and this book was not as angst-filled as I thought it would be. I also really liked Hank’s character. He was flawed but well-written and well-developed. I especially enjoyed seeing the characters from the first book.
I thought that both Callie and Hank’s exes were awful and I enjoyed seeing them get what (I thought) they deserved.
I definitely recommend this book to all fans of romance novels.

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Fiction Friday: Book Review- Secrets of a Runaway Bride by Valerie Bowman (Secret Brides #2)

Secrets of a Runaway Bride (Secret Brides, #2)Secrets of a Runaway Bride by Valerie Bowman
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Annie has earned herself the (very unfortunate) nickname of “The Runaway Bride” after a botched elopement attempt. When her sister and brother-in-law leave on their honeymoon, Annie sees it as a perfect opportunity to fix her past mistake and actually get married to the man that she loves. But first she needs to escape her brother-in-law’s meddling best friend, Jordan.
Jordan has sworn to keep an eye on Annie and is determined to keep his word. He knows firsthand what it is like to love someone and not have that love returned. And since Annie’s beau has no backbone, it falls to Jordan to protect her reputation. So he kidnaps her and takes her to the country.
I really liked Jordan and Annie together. They have a very clear chemistry and the build-up to their romance is great. However I felt like that latter part of the book was forced. The plot seemed flat and it just seemed like Annie and Jordan’s relationship was dragged on. This was a really good book and I look forward to reading the rest of the series.

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Fiction Friday: Book Review- Lying Out Loud by Kody Keplinger

Lying Out LoudLying Out Loud by Kody Keplinger
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Sonny lies about everything. It’s her way of regaining control over her life. So when her nemesis, Ryder messages her instead of his crush, her best friend, Amy, she doesn’t bother to fix his mistake. However a real connection developed between Ryder and Sonny and Sonny is now forced to stop her lying ways. But Ryder hates her in real life and telling the truth would mean ending things between them permanently.
I absolutely hate stories/movies where there is a lying character who, for whatever reason, is unable to confess to the truth. It pisses me off because literally all you have to do to fix everything is TELL THE DAMN TRUTH.
As much as I enjoyed this book, I was incredibly frustrated with Sonny. She was incapable of telling the truth throughout the book and it just annoyed me.
Like “Run”, this also had a really strong female friendship which I loved. I also enjoyed seeing Wesley and Bianca again.
This was a great read (with the exception of annoying, lying Sonny) but the ending was a bit too open for me. Like in “Run”, I needed to know more about the future of these characters. I recommend this book to anyone who is looking for a quick read.

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Fiction Friday: Book Review- Run by Kody Keplinger

RunRun by Kody Keplinger
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Bo and Agnes should not be friends. Bo is the town’s typical bad girl while Agnes is considered a sweet angel by the town. They’re total opposites. Or are they?
When Bo and Agnes meet, they become fast friends. One day, things get too bad for Bo at home and she decides to run away. Agnes joins her. Their journey away from their small town and the events leading up to it form part of this story.
I thought this was an interesting story but it felt a bit lacking. There were several questions I had that were left unanswered at the end of the book. This was a quick read but I enjoyed it and I could not put it down. I loved how different Bo and Agnes were from each other. It was refreshing to see such a deep bond between females.
The characters in this book were all amazingly well-written and well-developed. I just wish that the ending was more complete. Reading this book was incredible but the ending left me feeling a bit empty.

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Summer at Buttercup Beach by Holly Martin

Summer at Buttercup BeachSummer at Buttercup Beach by Holly Martin
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Freya and Rome have been best friends for the past six years. But while Freya has feelings for Rome, he only sees her as a sister. Or does he? Recently the two of them have been getting closer and closer. It seems like only a matter of time before the two of them are finally together. However there is still the issue of Rome and his tragic past. Rome lost the woman he loved in a brutal and tragic accident which has left him with deep scars.
This was a very interesting book and I loved reading it. I thought this book had hotter scenes that any of Holly Martin’s previous books which I really enjoyed. Freya and Rome’s characters are well-written and real. This book also sets up the background for the next book in the series (which I absolutely cannot wait for!).
Like all of Holly Martin’s books, this features a variety of entertaining and colourful characters, a beautiful small town and a great romance. I recommend this book to all fans of contemporary romance.

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Fiction Friday: Book Review- Born of Defiance (The League #7) by Sherri Lynn Kenyon

Born of Defiance (The League, #7)Born of Defiance by Sherrilyn Kenyon
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I really enjoyed this book even though I barely understood it. Talyn is a fighter and an Andarion with no father. As a result of the latter, he faces discrimination on a daily basis. He is treated as less than a person. When Talyn decides to get himself a companion, his entire life changes and he decides he deserves to have something more. I have no idea what an Andarion is (and the book doesn’t explain what it is) but I enjoyed the book nonetheless. I also didn’t understand Andarion culture and tradition but the book explained those. This was a really intriguing book. The plot was suspenseful and the characters well-written and well-developed. I’m definitely going to be following this series. Whatever the Andarions are, they have a rich history and I can’t wait to learn more about them. I strongly recommend this series to all fans of fantasy.

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Book Review: Never Trust a Pirate by Valerie Bowman (Playful Brides #7)

Never Trust a Pirate (Playful Brides, #7)Never Trust a Pirate by Valerie Bowman
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The first Playful Brides book I ever read was Daphne’s story (The Irresistible Rogue) and while there have been more than a few books released since then, I’ve always wondered what happened to Cade.
Apparently the mysterious Cavendish brother has moved in with Rafe and spends his nights out doing…something.
Danielle is a spy who has been hired to keep an eye on Cade but it isn’t long before an attraction sparks between them. Cade is supposed to be Danielle’s last job and the key to her freedom and a life of normality. So no matter how attractive she may find him, she has a job to do if she wants to get out of the business of espionage.
While I always like Valerie Bowman’s writing, I felt like this book was special to me since it reminded me of The Irresistible Rogue (of course, seeing characters from that book didn’t hurt matters eithers). All the spying, lying and disguises reminded me of The Irresistible Rogue and made this book different from the others in this series.
This book was well-written and entertaining. I can’t wait to read more of this series and I especially look forward to seeing more of Daphne’s younger cousin (hopefully in a story of her own).

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Fiction Friday: Book Review- Spring at Blueberry Bay by Holly Martin

Spring at Blueberry BaySpring at Blueberry Bay by Holly Martin
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Bella has been abandoned by her parents as a kid. She is also very broke. But when she finds a homeless man, Isaac on her doorstep, she takes him in and shares her last meal with him. What Bella doesn’t know is that Isaac is lying to her and is not who he seems to be.
I can’t say more without giving too much of the story away but if you’ve read Holly Martin’s other books then you probably will be able to predict the story. This book reminded me of Holly Martin’s other books so at first, I wasn’t really interested. It just seemed like a story that was told one too many times before. However I love Holly Martin’s writing so I pushed though and I’m glad that I did. Bella and Isaac are an adorable couple. It pissed me off that he lied to her but I eventually got over it. I loved their chemistry in this book and was really sad once it was over. Like all Holly Martin books, this one is full of colourful characters and I cannot wait to read more. I’ve developed an attachment to Bella’s cousins and would love to see them all get their happy endings.

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