Belle was in Ella’s story as one of the privileged students at the Royal Academy. She was also hurt in the attacks, but her family had the money to actually fully heal her. At least, that is the story told in Fated, Ella’s story.
The truth is that Belle was only pretending to act like a stuck-up privileged student to try to bring down her abusive father. She hates her father and was looking into his finances at the bank to see why her family stayed rich during the plague when all the other families took a financial hit. She thinks that she is onto something when the attack happens, and, and the brain damage she gets from the blast causes her to lose part of her memory. Her father refuses to let a healer heal her fully, and chooses to threaten her into submission. Without complete memory of what she was trying to achieve and who she was close to, Belle also has to deal with the prince trying to hit on her. He seems rather close to her, but she can’t even remember why.
I didn’t like Belle in Fated very much, but she only showed up for a brief moment. I wasn’t sure what to expect in a book that would be completely about her, but I knew that I wanted to finish the series. This book was a pleasant surprise.
Belle wasn’t as stuck up as I originally thought she was. She was only acting rude to Ella in order to make her father believe that she was on his side. Everything she did was an act to keep her father on her side, even though she was working against him. I was so sad when she lost her memories, she had been doing so well and was so close to her goal and then everything disappeared before her eyes because of the memory loss. She was one of the strongest “rich girl” characters that I have ever read in a story before, so I hope to see more of her in the books to come.
The only small complaint I had about this story was how much time Belle spent confused. It was kind of annoying after a while as a reader from Belle’s POV to know what she was supposed to be doing, and still see her wandering around, confused and in pain from her unhealed injury. I was only frustrated for a small amount of the book, but it was worth mentioning.
Another thing worth mentioning was that I couldn’t see much of the chemistry between the prince and Belle. They were an okay couple, but I didn’t love them as much as the couples in the previous two books. Overall, I think that this book would rank at the bottom of the books in this series, but because the series is so good, I think it is still a 4 star read.
I would recommend this book to anyone looking for a new Beauty and the Beast retelling.
The Sparrow by Denna M. Davis is a novel about a 16-year-old girl named Amanda whose grandparents send her through a magic portal to the Emaji Kingdom for the summer. She is told by a boy named Solomon that she is the fated Sparrow, the hero that will save them from their evil king Zorn. Solomon also claims that he is her soulmate as well, and she meets many people along her journey.
I wanted to enjoy this book, but the storyline was so
confusing that I couldn’t keep track of or differentiate between the characters.
No one was unique enough for me to remember why they were important to the story.
The only thing I enjoyed about this book were the addictive action scenes, the
rest I could do without.
I won’t recommend this book but I won’t totally write off
this author. I think that she could probably write well for different types of
books, or maybe books with a smaller host of characters to keep track of. This
was simply not the book for me.
A shrewd princess whose father is plotting against her. A loyal servant on a quest to avenge his family. A streetwise demon smoke hunter in desperate need of money. A charming thief whom everyone is hunting. They are four teenagers whose lives would never intersect, until a war between kingdoms bubbles up, and the dangerous truth aboutdemon smoke intertwines all their fates. It’s a tangled web of political intrigue, shifting alliances, and forbidden love, in a world where sometimes no amount of magic can keep you safe.
In The Smoke Thieves, you learn the stories of three different pairs of people. First, you have Catherine and Ambrose. Catherine is a princess who is about to be forced into a marriage that she doesn’t want to be in, but she is in love with her best friend and personal guard Ambrose. Her brother Boris is a spy for her father and wants to make sure she stays in line until she is married off to a foreign prince. Then you have Tash and Gravell, a young girl and an old man who hunt for demon smoke to sell. Lastly, you have March and Elyon, the servent of a prince and the charming thief. These stories will overlap for one another, but they will mostly take place in these pairs for the majority of the story.
My favorite character in the story was probably either March or Catherine. March was one of the last of the Abasks, and he found out what had really happened on the day that his family was massacred. He didn’t know much about his culture and was the odd one out in the prince’s court, so he has a lot to learn. Catherine was in love with Ambrose, but she didn’t act foolishly about it. Her country came first, and she was determined to do her best to keep her kingdom safe. Even if it meant that she would have to go against her father.
The only reason why I rate this book 4 instead of 5 stars was because things really started to slow down in the middle of the book. I read the first 200 pages in around 2-3 hours, but the next 150 pages took me over 5 hours of intermittent reading to get through. If it wasn’t for the drag in the middle, I would have loved every minute of this novel.
Everything else in this book was great. The characters were all unique and everything connected well. I never got confused as to whose POV it was as I read through the book. There was romance but it didn’t take over the novel until I didn’t want to read it anymore. And the action scenes were addictive and yet realistic.
I would recommend this book to anyone looking for a new upper YA/NA novel to read.
I received a copy of this book and this is my voluntary review.
Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 books.
A princess. A soldier. A servant. A demon hunter. A thief. When we last saw them, this unlikely group was heading into the Northern Territory of the kingdom of Pitoria, on the run from the sadistic and power-hungry King Aloysius of Brigant. The Smoke Thieves have discovered that demon smoke is not only an illegal drug used for pleasure, but in fact, when taken by children, demon smoke briefly gives its users super-human strength. Aloysius’ plan is simple and brutal: kill the demons for their smoke, and use that smoke to build an unstoppable army of children to take over Pitoria, Calidor, and then the rest of the world. The Smoke Thieves are the only ones who understand this plan–but can they stop it? Catherine, Aloysius’ daughter, is seen as a traitor from all sides; Tash is heartbroken after the loss of her one friend and sees nothing left for her in the human world; Edyon is wanted for murder; March is carrying the secret of his betrayal of his new love; Ambrose is out for revenge–and all the while, the demons have plans of their own…
Sally Green lives in Cheshire, England. She has had various jobs from her first paper-round to a career as an accountant, but in 2010 she started writing a novel and that changed her life. She still runs most days despite several attempts to give it up.
Ben Galley is an author of dark and epic fantasy books who currently hails from Victoria, Canada. Since publishing his debut The Written in 2010, Ben has released a range of award-winning fantasy novels, including the weird western Bloodrush and the epic standalone The Heart of Stone. He is also the author of the brand new Chasing Graves Trilogy.
Book one of The Emanska Series
His name is Farden. They whisper that he’s dangerous. Dangerous is only the half of it.
Something has gone missing from the libraries of Arfell. Something very old, and something very powerful. Five scholars are now dead, a country is once again on the brink of war, and the magick council is running out of time and options.
Entangled in a web of lies and politics and dragged halfway across icy Emaneska and back, Farden must unearth a secret even he doesn’t want to know, a secret that will shake the foundations of his world. Dragons, drugs, magick, death, and the deepest of betrayals await.
Welcome to Emaneska.
Book one of The Chasing Graves Trilogy
Welcome to Araxes, where getting murdered is just
the start of your problems.
Meet Caltro Basalt. He’s a master locksmith, a selfish bastard, and as of his first night in Araxes, stone cold dead.
They call it the City of Countless Souls, the colossal jewel of the Arctian Empire, and all it takes to be its ruler is to own more ghosts than any other. For in Araxes, the dead do not rest in peace in the afterlife, but live on as slaves for the rich.
While Caltro struggles to survive, those around him strive for the emperor’s throne in Araxes’ cutthroat game of power. The dead gods whisper from corpses, a soulstealer seeks to make a name for himself with the help of an ancient cult, a princess plots to purge the emperor from his armoured Sanctuary, and a murderer drags a body across the desert, intent on reaching Araxes no matter the cost.
Only one thing is certain in Araxes: death is just the beginning.
Book 1 of The Scarlet Star Trilogy
Prime Lord Hark lies dead in a pool of his own
The Empire is in turmoil. The Emerald Benches are leaderless. Queen Victorious calls for justice. But none of this matters to Lord Hark’s thirteen year-old son, Tonmerion, who abruptly finds himself orphaned and now in the charge of an estranged aunt. An undertaker, no less, who lives far across the Iron Ocean, at the very brink of the Endless Land and all known civilisation. In a place they call Fell Falls, Wyoming.
In the dusty frontier town of Fell Falls, Merion finds no silverware, no servants, no plush velvet nor towering spires. Only dust, danger, and the railway. Tonmerion has only one friend to help him escape the torturous heat and unravel his father’s murder. A fae warrior named Rhin. An embittered, twelve-inch tall outcast of the Undering whose past refuses to let go of him.
But there are darker things at work in Fell Falls, and not just the railwraiths or the savages baying for blood. Secrets lurk in Merion’s bloodline.
Secrets that will redefine him.
Heart of Stone
Merciless. Murderer. Monster. He has been called many names in his time.
Built for war and nothing else, he has witnessed every shade of violence humans know, and he has wrought his own masterpieces with their colours. He cared once, perhaps, but far too long ago. He is bound to his task, dead to the chaos he wreaks for his masters.
Now, he has a new master to serve and a new war to endure. In the far reaches of the Realm, Hartlund tears itself in two over coin and crown. This time he will fight for a boy king and a general bent on victory.
Beneath it all he longs for change. For something to surprise him. For an end to this cycle of warfare.
Every fighter has a last fight. Even one made of stone.
Home is the continuation of the Binti series. Binti has been
at Oomza for over a year, and she has managed to make somewhat acquaintances
with the Meduse Okwu. Now, Binti must travel to her home town and go on a
pilgrimage with her people. She brings Okwu to her home planet to meet her people,
and she struggles to find her place as a foreigner in a place that she once
Okorafor does include some thoughts of Binti having panic
attacks and having to go to a counselor because of the attack on the ship a
year ago, but I felt like Binti and the world still don’t care about what
happened on that ship! Okwu is allowed at the school as some sort of exchange
student, and no one ever really questions him. He was on the ship when the
attack occurred, but no one is even put in jail for killing all of those innocent
students. Sure, they wanted the chief’s stinger, but surely there could have
been a more peaceful way of getting it back rather than killing a ship full of
students and then keeping one hostage as an ambassador. I don’t understand how
they just forgave the Meduse for this and just moved to allow them into the
school so easily. How are they explaining this to the parents of the children
who were killed? Nothing makes sense.
On top of that, did you know Binti has turned half Meduse? Because
I sure didn’t! It came as a complete shock to me when all of a sudden, her hair
was some sort of tentacles. And the book doesn’t even discuss her hating herself
for becoming (at least partially) one of the killers that had taken so many
lives. It would have been interesting banter, but it isn’t even discussed. Clearly,
she doesn’t view the Meduse as her equal though, as she repeatedly calls Okwu
an “it” throughout the book. It would make sense if Okwu was called “them” for
being gender non-binary, but it? IT? Okwu is clearly a sentient being worth
more than just the pronoun it. So, I call Okwu he in this review and in my head
as that is how other characters refer to him in the book.
It is so disappointing when Binti meets her family. I wasn’t
expecting her to be welcomed home with open arms, but they are outright cruel
to her at times. It’s like everyone has forgotten that she totally could have
died in the previous book with the rest of the kids on that ship. Speaking of
the ship, the ship is alive. Again, would have been interesting to see how a
living creature would feel about having hundreds of students killed inside her
own body, but that isn’t discussed either.
Overall, I would not recommend this trilogy. I am going to
read the last book, but then I am not going to read it again most likely. I
wanted so badly to enjoy it, but I simply cannot, unfortunately.
The Nowhere Gate by K.T. Munson is the sequel to the Sixth
Gate. It follows Elisabeth and Ki from the previous novel and continues with
the events after that novel. Nanette and Ethan are getting closer every day,
but the is the species issue with Nanette being human and Ethan not. Ethan has
to protect Nanette with his life, but Nanette wants to help him on his fight as
well. Ki has landed on a strange planet and doesn’t know how to get home, and
others are telling Elisabeth to give up on him but she refuses to do so.
This book suffers from some of the same issues that the
previous installment did, one of them being the POV switches. I struggled for
the first 100 pages or so of this novel, trying to figure out who was who and what
exactly was going on. After the first 100 pages, the story starts to truly come
together and I became more invested dint he individual characters.
Most of my favorite parts of this story have to do with
spoilers, so I am just going to say that the last 100 pages were absolutely
action-packed and were what made me sure that I wanted to read the final
installment of the series when it eventually comes out. One of my favorite
non-spoiler parts of the novel was the romance between Nanette and Ethan. I
loved seeing how they grew together, but they weren’t so impulsive as to put
one another in danger like many other book couples that I read about. Instead,
they had each other’s best interests at heart, and were truly ready to wait.
The jail scenes were also pretty intense. I have to say, K.T.
Munson does not shy away from having a few more graphic action scenes. Nothing so
much that I would physically cringe and want to stop reading, but enough to keep
me on the edge of my seat to see what could happen next to one of the characters.
I couldn’t stop reading!
Overall, this was another great installment in this series.
I would recommend it to anyone looking for a new upper YA or NA fantasy novel with
a nice side of romance to enjoy.
I received a copy of this novel and this is my voluntary
Born Under Fire is a historical novel that tells the story of a girl coming of age and her drive to excel despite the devastating effects of long-term war. Born in Jerusalem under British rule in 1928, Shula grows up in a world in turmoil as Hitler rises to power and nations enter into war. Amid a landscape of ancient stone ruins next to modern Bauhaus architecture, and desert scrub ending at newly verdant farmlands, Shula grows into her independence as the State of Israel is born. Based on historical documents and events, Born Under Fire is also about the context surrounding the founding of the State of Israel, as well as the horrors and dangers of growing up in a conflict zone. Shula battles grief and depression due to the shattering events affecting her, her family, and the entire world. Despite this struggle, her resilient spirit enables her to reach great heights as a concert pianist..
Born of Fire by Rina Z. Neiman is a historical fiction
coming-of-age story about a young Jewish girl named Shula growing up during the
founding of the State of Israel. Jewish people are being targeted throughout
the world, and soon her hometown of Jerusalem is not even safe. Shula just wants
to be able to live peacefully with her family, especially her best friend and
older brother Avraham, but he wants to go off to be in the first Jewish Air
Force. When her town starts being bombed, her family realizes nowhere is safe.
Shula tries to make the best of this horrible situation by continuing to pursue
her dream of being a concert pianist.
I didn’t know anything about this war between Arabs and
Jewish people in Jerusalem and Israel, and so I came into this book completely
blind. This book can be a bit confusing when explaining events, as everything is
told from the POV of Shula. When the adults hide things from the children in
order to not scare them, the reader doesn’t know the complete story behind what
is going on either. I wish that there had been at least one or two adult POVs
in the story so that I could have learned the truth behind some of the events going
on in that time of history.
I loved that Shula was not some lovesick young teenaged
girl. There was a love interest in this story, but he was not the main focus at
all. He wasn’t even involved in the story for quite a few chapters. This was Shula’s
story about her family and her dreams, and it was not hijacked by any random
love interests. I also loved Shula’s parents. They were so selfless in the name
of their children. When Shula wanted to learn how to play piano, they made sure
that she got a piano and piano lessons. They wanted to give their children
their best lives even though they were quite literally living in a warzone.
Even though this novel was historical fiction, I felt as if
the characters were real by the time I got to the end. I wanted to learn more
about their lovies after the novel ended, I wish that there was a sequel to
I would recommend this novel to anyone looking for an
emotional and realistic historical fiction novel.
I received a copy of this book and this is my voluntary
Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 books
“I went to high school in Israel in the late 50’s and heard many personal stories about the early years and the struggle for independence. Your book makes these years really come alive. Also, most of my relatives’ tales were set in Kibbutzim and rural Palestine. Your book describes life in Tel Aviv as just as heroic. Lastly, I share your mother’s love for Yemenite embroidery and am happy that your book calls attention to this beautiful art form.”
“This lovely coming of age story provides a view into the challenges, conflicts and dilemmas facing the European Jews fleeing Hitler’s reach and trying to make Palestine their home. It pulls no punches and honestly acknowledges the dilemmas posed by the creation of this new country, but as it tells the story from the eyes of a young girl, we see those intricacies as she would have seen them, allowing the reader an understanding not only of historical events that readers may not be aware of (the proposed partition, the ethical dilemma posed by Jewish terrorist groups, etc.) but also of the emotional journey of these refugees and their children. This story is an important reminder of the effects of war and provides a critical piece of history necessary for understanding the world today.”
Nima M. Vincent via Amazon.com, 5 out of 5 star review
“This story drew me in from the very first page. The vivid descriptions of smell, sights and taste, longing, disappointment and joy, evoked real emotion and made me wish I were sitting at the kitchen table with Shula and her aunts. I appreciated the many history lessons tucked into the adventures, and was relieved to discover details about this time period without being burdened by the author’s politics.”
Rina Z. Neiman is a writer, event producer and public relations professional. Born Under Fire is based on the true story of her mother, Shulamit Dubno Neiman, a Sabra, a musician and one of the first generation of modern-day Israelis. Rina lives in Marin County, California with her husband and son. This is her first novel.
What goes better in the morning than a muffin! So, grab your coffee and join us today as we celebrate the launch of Rina Z. Neiman’s book BornUnder Fire. Read an interview with the author and enter to win a copy of the book.
Make sure you stop by Karen’s blog today where you can read Rina Z. Neiman’s guest post about how to manage time and distractions during the book writing process. If you are writing a book – or thinking about writing one – this one is a post you don’t want to miss!
If you love historical fiction, make sure you visit Anthony Avina’s blog today where he features author Rina Z. Neiman’s blog post about how she researched her historical fiction novel Born Under Fire. You won’t want to miss this!
Are you interested in writing history for young adults? If you are, you will absolutely want to visit Jess’ blog today where author Rina Z. Neiman talks about writing history for young adults and what grabs them and what loses them.
Feeling bookish today? Make sure you stop by Anjanette’s Bookworm blog where you can read her thoughts about Rina Z. Neiman’s powerful historical fiction book Born Under Fire plus read an interview with the author.
Interviewing someone for your book? Make sure you visit Madeline Sharples’ blog today where Rina Z. Neiman talks about how to conduct interviews with people who are (and who are not) willing to talk with you.
“Tender and illuminating. A beautiful debut.” –Rebecca Stead, Newbery Medal-winning author of When You Reach Me
A heartrending and hopeful debut novel about a nonverbal girl and her passion for space exploration, for fans of See You in the Cosmos, Mockingbird, and The Thing About Jellyfish.
Twelve-year-old Nova is eagerly awaiting the launch of the space shuttle Challenger–it’s the first time a teacher is going into space, and kids across America will watch the event on live TV in their classrooms. Nova and her big sister, Bridget, share a love of astronomy and the space program. They planned to watch the launch together. But Bridget has disappeared, and Nova is in a new foster home.
While foster families and teachers dismiss Nova as severely autistic and nonverbal, Bridget understands how intelligent and special Nova is, and all that she can’t express. As the liftoff draws closer, Nova’s new foster family and teachers begin to see her potential, and for the first time, she is making friends without Bridget. But every day, she’s counting down to the launch, and to the moment when she’ll see Bridget again. Because Bridget said, “No matter what, I’ll be there. I promise.”
Planet Earth is Blue is a book about a twelve-year-old girl
named Nova. She is autistic and nonverbal, but her sister Bridget always
described her as “a thinker not a talker.” She loves her older sister, her
sister always protected her in all of the foster homes that they had been in
over the years. Her sister made sure that Nova knew that they would always have
each other, even if they weren’t able to find a permanent home to stay in.
Bridget would always talk to Nova about space, and she even took Nova into
space a few times! They were both looking forward to the Challenger launch. Even though Bridget has been temporarily separated
from Nova, she promised Nova that they would be reunited in time for the
launch. Now, Nova has to spend time in a new foster home by herself, and she is
counting down the days to the launch when she will see her sister again.
This book places the reader into the shoes of a severely autistic
girl. She is not “retarded,” even though characters in this book may call her
that. This is the 80s, they don’t understand her, so they just placed her into a
box. Her new foster mother is starting to understand this. She’s starting to understand
that her new daughter is more capable than her social workers and former
teachers believed her to be. Bridget knew that her sister was more capable, but
no one paid attention to a young girl in foster care. Nova doesn’t know who
truly has her best interests at heart anymore. Her sister has left, and her new
mother seems nice. But other new mothers have seemed nice before and still sent
them on their way.
My favorite part of this book was hearing about Nova going
to school. It wasn’t my favorite because it was the happiest part of the book,
but it was my favorite because it was the most realistic and relatable, even
though this book took place in the 1980s. I had never truly thought about how
public school must be for someone who has autism until I personally met someone
who was autistic and in a Special Education program. Although she attended one
of the best schools in our state, the Special Ed program was a mess of teachers
who didn’t want to teach and students who were just trying their best to learn.
Even though some teachers think that the kids are able to actually take classes,
others believe that the students should just play games all day. Nova wants to
be able to have chapter books read to her, like her sister used to do. When she
is in school, sometimes her time is just wasted when teachers want her to point
out colors or play little games. She seems like she isn’t getting the answers
right, but she knows the answers. Sometimes the noise of the room and the building
are just too much and she mishears the question. I was rooting for Nova to
succeed in school the entire time, and I love how the author shows that the
kids would befriend one another and protect one another in the school.
Usually for books I also have a least favorite part of the novel,
but I literally have nothing to complain about with this book. Nicole weaves
Nova’s past and present to give you a complete look at this little girl’s life.
You may go from a scene where Nova is struggling in school to learning about
her birth mother to learning about her former foster homes. I read this book
all in one sitting, I just couldn’t put it down. I had to know more about this
girl’s life, and I had to know if she would succeed.
This entire story just truly touched me. I even cried at the
end, and I very rarely cry when I read novels! This book is perfect for YA
readers and adult readers alike. I wish that there was a sequel to this novel,
to see what happens as Nova grows up. For now, I am so glad that I got the
chance to meet her.
I received a copy of this book and this is my voluntary
Overall Rating: 6 out of 5 books
Nicole Panteleakos is an author, playwright, thespian, and Ravenclaw. Her debut novel PLANET EARTH IS BLUE (Wendy Lamb Books, Penguin Random House) will be out in bookstores nationwide on May 14, 2019, with a second middle grade novel to follow in 2020. She is represented by agent Katie Grimm at Don Congdon Associates and belongs to the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators: Metro NY. She is also a Lifetime Member of the VFW Auxiliary and National Home for Children, a godmother of three, and a regular contributor to Nanny Magazine. When not writing, she can usually be found reading fanfiction, playing board games, doing community theatre, or adding to her Alice in Wonderland coffee cup collection.
I’ve never had a problem getting the girl, until Mallory. Her resistance might have something to do with my incoherent introduction and the pickup line I used. But come on, who doesn’t love a bull rider?
Okay. So, maybe I didn’t make the best first impression but that’s what second chances are for. Right?
I don’t know what it is about Mallory, but I’ve got to have her. I need to get to know her. Who knows, maybe she will be the one to finally settle me down. There’s just one problem, I’ve only got a few weeks to win Mallory over before she flies back to Florida and the odds are stacked against me. But I think I can do it. I am Beau Cooper after all.
I don’t think that this couple should have been together. In the first half of the novel, I really thought that they were a good fit! They had an instant attraction towards one another, and they were sensitive to each other’s emotions. But then things started to go downhill.
I felt like the characters were actually intoxicated for 50% of the book. Most of the story was just them hopping from party to party, from bar to bar, getting drunk, doing things that they regret, and then having to get over the things that they regretted doing. At one point in the story, I was just saying to myself “oh what are they going to do now?” whenever they made the decision to go out yet again.
Beau is not really someone that even seems like he needs “settling down.” He seems pretty laidback, not even that much of a partier honestly. The only girl that was all over him in this book was his ex from high school. Speaking of this ex, she causes way too much drama. Beau is so much of a pushover that he lets her kiss him IN FRONT of Mallory! And then when Mallory goes to dance with his friend and his friend kisses her without her even asking for it, Beau gets mad at her. Like cmon, you just basically made out with a years old ex right in front of her two seconds ago. Even if she wanted this kiss from one of your friends, she would have actually deserved to get it without repercussions this time!
This brings me to the next point. Mallory has intense trust issues. Beau could literally be doing anything, and Mallory would assume that he was out with the girlfriend that he repeatedly said that he did not have. It was just so ridiculous at one point, and no one ever questions why she has these issues. It just lead to a bunch of little fights between her and Beau, and this was before the ex even showed up again. That would have been the time for Mallory to actually get mad at Beau for a reason, but then she gets kissed against her will, and Beau gets mad at her. Mallory’s issues are touched upon when her ex-boyfriend and her family situation is discussed, but I barely remember what exactly it was. It was a very brief discussion.
My favorite part of this book was during the scene where Mallory was in a bit of trouble. I can’t say too much about that because it is a big spoiler for the book, but it was my favorite overall part of the book. I give the book an extra star for this scene, just because it was exciting.
Overall, this was a bit of an underwhelming romance read. I wouldn’t necessarily recommend it, but if you have some time and you want to read it, then you could try it! You might end up still enjoying it! It is a very short read.
I received a copy of this book and this is my voluntary review.
The Underworld may be the best place for Caroline to heal, but it is torture without her wife…
After being kidnapped and tortured by genetically engineered humans for days, Caroline knows that her fellow demons are the ones best equipped to heal her, but her human wife and step-daughter aren’t welcome in the Underworld.
Mina isn’t exactly happy to lose her wife, either, but with her sister who had a hand in Caroline’s kidnapping now asking for her help, she has more than enough to keep her busy on Earth.
Mina and Caroline’s lives are only getting more complicated, but they have a dream for their future that they are ready to fight for…
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This story picks up where Separated left off. Caroline is no longer captured, and Mina’s sister Isha is no longer coming after her, but the damage has been done. Caroline has to return to the Underworld in order to heal, and she has to get back to her fake dating in order to maintain her Royal status. She continues to connect with her wife with their dream connection, but she can’t go to see her face to face. Mina isn’t happy with these arrangments, but she has to put on a brave face both for her daughter Diya and for Caroline.
I didn’t realize how much I missed Caroline and Mina’s relationship until I read this novel! They maintained their deep emotional connection even though they were both dealing with trauma from the previous events. Mina had to deal with Isha coming back in her life. Even though Isha seemed apologetic, Mina was still on edge after hearing that she was working for the Enhanced that hated Caroline. Caroline has to face the Demon court day after day, knowing that most of those people only tolerated her, and deal with PTSD from her imprisonment. They support each other in their dreams, even when their dreams are sometimes infiltrated by thoughts of trauma, and then go back to their respective lives every single day. Diya also has to learn how to live without her mom, the one who was supposed to always be around to protect them. Everyone is hurting, but they try to support each other through the pain.
Caroline’s PTSD tends to manifest itself in her powers. She is struggling to control them, and the stressful environment of Demon Court is not helping her case. Her new friend Seph helps her through this, and makes her feel less isolated in this new and unfriendly environment. I think that some things could definitely be brewing in that friendship, but I HOPE that things will straighten themselves out. Seph is such a nice person, and I don’t want her to have to go back to having no friends. Caroline didn’t pick up on anything because of her being Litcorde/autistic, but I definitely picked up on PLENTY of things. I just…..I need Seph to be happy! She is so sweet, she deserves happiness too.
Mina’s storyline continues as she returns to the police department. More things are revealed as she works with her sister to try to stop Isha’s higher-ups from working with the Enhanced. This reveals that Mina’s police team is the “throw-away” team full of disabled, LGBT+, female, and minority policepeople. They are a family and they do their jobs well, but they aren’t taken seriously by the other squads. This was a truly realistic and interesting plot point, as it delved into how discrimination can be in a place that disguises itself as being more open.
Overall, I absolutely loved this book! I am already working on book 5, and then I will just be waiting for the next release in the series.
I received a copy of this book and this is my voluntary review.