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Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Review: The Crown's Game by Evelyn Skye


Title:
 The Crown's Game (The Crown's Game #1)
Author: Evelyn Skye
Kindle, 399 pages
Published: March 17th 2010
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Genre: YA - Fantasy - Historical Fiction - Romance
Source: via Edelweiss



Vika Andreyeva can summon the snow and turn ash into gold. Nikolai Karimov can see through walls and conjure bridges out of thin air. They are enchanters—the only two in Russia—and with the Ottoman Empire and the Kazakhs threatening, the Tsar needs a powerful enchanter by his side.

And so he initiates the Crown’s Game, an ancient duel of magical skill—the greatest test an enchanter will ever know. The victor becomes the Imperial Enchanter and the Tsar’s most respected adviser. The defeated is sentenced to death.

Raised on tiny Ovchinin Island her whole life, Vika is eager for the chance to show off her talent in the grand capital of Saint Petersburg. But can she kill another enchanter—even when his magic calls to her like nothing else ever has?

For Nikolai, an orphan, the Crown’s Game is the chance of a lifetime. But his deadly opponent is a force to be reckoned with—beautiful, whip smart, imaginative—and he can’t stop thinking about her.

And when Pasha, Nikolai’s best friend and heir to the throne, also starts to fall for the mysterious enchantress, Nikolai must defeat the girl they both love... or be killed himself.

As long-buried secrets emerge, threatening the future of the empire, it becomes dangerously clear... the Crown’s Game is not one to lose.
Purchase at: Amazon | B&N | TBD | Kobo 

I had a hard time deciding what rating to give this book because while I didn’t really enjoy it, I didn’t really hate it either. However, upon thinking about it, I realized that I have no desire to read the next book, so I decided to just give this book 2 stars. I know a lot of people loved this book, and I really wanted to love this book because of the amazing concept, but it turns out that I am yet again the black sheep.

What I Liked:
1. The premise of this book is very interesting: Set in Russia, the two enchanters born of that time (1800’s) were to enter in the Crown’s Game to duel each other until one dies and the other becomes the Grand Enchanter of Russia. I mean, it has magic and it’s set in Russia! I really was interested in that plot, and I felt like it would be a really unique book.

2. The vivid descriptions: In the game, the enchanters were tasked to please Pasha for his birthday celebration, so the enchanters created a lot of beautiful things such as fountains, magical boxes that would create masquerade gowns, islands, etc. The author did a really great job of describing these, and I felt like I was able to see those things clearly.

3. The writing: Not that it was anything special, but I felt like the writing was good. I had no problems with the pacing and choice of words. And as mentioned above, the author is really good in descriptions without being too overbearing with words.

What I Didn’t Like:
1. Multiple POVs: I don’t usually have problems with multiple POVs, especially when the book is in the third person perspective, but I was just annoyed in the execution of it in this book. At first I thought there was already this set amount of narrators, but throughout the book, new ones just keep popping out. I would prefer it if from the start, I knew which people would get to narrate the novel, because I was just confused at times why there were new ones popping out, even neat the end of the book.

2. Love Square?: I don’t really like love triangles, but this novel has a love square! It was infuriating because I was really looking forward to the magic element of the novel, but at some point the focus became the romance. And can I just say how predictable it is that Vika and Nikolai would fall in love with each other? I think I would have preferred it if it became Vika + Pasha and Nikolai + Renata, just for the sake of being different for once.

3. Bland: I don’t know, this book just wasn’t interesting enough for me. I was really looking forward to reading this book the longest times, but it fell short of my expectations. In my opinion, it lacks the excitement that I wanted it to have, so I didn’t really mind if I was interrupted or anything.
2 stars. Ah, it's okay. 



Friday, May 20, 2016

Book Blast: Asleep by Krystal Wade | Excerpt + Giveaway!

AsleepBlast
Hello readers!
Are you looking for your next read?
Well, let us help make things easier for you!
Welcome to the Book Blast for
Asleep by Krystal Wade
presented by Blaze Publishing!
Check out the teaser below, and be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!
As a special treat, we've got another book that may tickle your fancy... What is it? Read on, dear reader, read on!

AsleepCover
 Asleep by Krystal Wade 
Publication Date: February 16, 2016 
Publisher: Blaze Publishing
Genre: YA Horror

add to goodreads
"To cure fear, you must use fear."Rose Briar claims no responsibility for the act that led to her imprisonment in an asylum. She wants to escape, until terrifying nightmares make her question her sanity and reach out to her doctor. He’s understanding and caring in ways her parents never have been, but as her walls tumble down and Rose admits fault, a fellow patient warns her to stop the medications. Phillip believes the doctor is evil and they’ll never make it out of the facility alive. Trusting him might be just the thing to save her. Or it might prove the asylum is exactly where she needs to be.
Purchase at: BAM | Chapters | Amazon | B&N | TBD


What Readers Are Saying:

"This was hands down one of the best thrillers I've read in a long while." - Martina McAtee, Author

"It's amazing how this book can bring so many emotions out of me and leaves me being a sobbing mess in the end!" - Gina, A Thousand Books

" It is 100% a book that you need to experience completely for yourself." - Lauren, Wonderless Reviews



excerpt
https://images-blogger-opensocial.googleusercontent.com/gadgets/proxy?url=http%3A%2F%2F3.bp.blogspot.com%2F-Y7yHmPNCRpU%2FVqlj2vq81MI%2FAAAAAAAAPI0%2F63pKONR9fSI%2Fs640%2FAsleepTeaser9a%2525281%252529.jpg&container=blogger&gadget=a&rewriteMime=image%2F*

Closing her eyes, she brought up the image of Phillip on the rooftop, where the moon showered him with its glowing essence, where his expression was sadly stoic as he stared out into the lawn, hands in his pockets, shoulders broad and strong. Rose set her charcoal to the canvas, prepared to draw the moon as a melting clock, Phillip’s face, the tree’s rounded, naked branches as well. But she couldn’t give this up. This image was too beautiful, too personal.

This image belonged to Rose, not to this institution.

“Draw.”

She turned her face toward the ceiling and shouted, “No.”

Something warm and wet splattered onto the canvas, something red. Rose jumped up and backed away from the easel, trembling with each step that brought her closer to the wall. She tripped over the tray of food, scattering bits of eggs and bacon all over the floor, then backed into the door knob. She pulled on it, banging and shouting and screaming for someone to help her.

To get her away from the blood. That had to be blood.

“Please, please help me!”

No one came. Nothing but the sounds of the baseboard heater and the occasional drip of more red fluid reached her ears.
About-the-Author2
Krystal Wade

I’m happily married to the love of my life (don’t gag) and raising three beautiful children in the gorgeous state of Virginia. We live just outside Washington, D.C., and every day I wake up to find myself stuck in traffic trying to get there.The horrid commute gives me plenty of time to zone out and think about my characters in full, brilliant details (I’m a safe driver; don’t worry). Stories give me a way to forget about the sometimes smelly strangers sitting next to me on the fifty mile trek into town (I pick up hitchhikers every day. True story. Check out www.slug-lines.com if you don’t believe me). I’ve been a part of organized hitchhiking for nearly fifteen years, but that’s just one small aspect of my oh-so-large life. When I’m not working, commuting, or chasing after my three children (four if you count the man), you can usually find me outside talking to my chickens like they’re the cutest things in the world (they are), or training my amazing dogs how to herd said chickens (which they love), or curled up on the sofa with a good book (why can’t that be 100% of the time?). I hope you love my stories (or just like them a little; that would be okay, too). And I hope that one day you find your passion, because there’s nothing in life better than doing what you love while surrounded by people you love.

YOU MAY ALSO WANT TO CHECK OUT...

Because I Love YouBecause I Love You by Tori Rigby Publication Date: May 17, 2016 
Publisher: Blaze Publishing

add to goodreads

Eight weeks after sixteen-year-old Andie Hamilton gives her virginity to her best friend, “the stick” says she’s pregnant.
 
Her friends treat her like she’s carrying the plague, her classmates torture and ridicule her, and the boy she thought loved her doesn’t even care. Afraid to experience the next seven months alone, she turns to her ex-boyfriend, Neil Donaghue, a dark-haired, blue-eyed player. With him, she finds comfort and the support she desperately needs to make the hardest decision of her life: whether or not to keep the baby. Then a tragic accident leads Andie to discover Neil’s keeping a secret that could dramatically alter their lives, and she's forced to make a choice. But after hearing her son’s heartbeat for the first time, she doesn’t know how she’ll ever be able to let go.
giveaway2
Complete the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win!

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Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Release Day Blitz: The Grind by Kristen Kehoe!

Hey everyone! 
Welcome to the Release Day Blitz for The Grind by Kristen Kehoe!




Book Two - High Resolution
The Grind (Book #2 in the Vert series)
By Kristen Kehoe
Genre: NA Contemporary Romance

Hunter Jackson was on top of the world when that phone call came.
His third X Games title still fresh, a female in his lap, and sponsors ready to offer him any deal he wanted--the kid from California had made it big. And then his phone rang. And it kept ringing. And that news that no one wants was waiting for him on the other line. "It's Mom," his sister said. And like that, his world changed. Months later, Hunter isn't skating--he's at home, taking care of his mom, and keeping the rest of his family together, flipping houses to pay for the medical bills that just keep piling up. In need of a new foreman, Hunter gets a shock when Isabel Rojas shows up to his job site, more gorgeous than any woman he can ever remember, and a mouth that whips of Spanish insults with deadly precision.

Isa comes from a house full of dominant men ready to tell her what to do—she loves them, but she refuses to be the woman who takes orders from a man for the rest of her life. She’s determined to be independent: her own apartment, her own job, her own person. In a family as large and committed to each other as hers, this is not an easy task. Two years of community college, an AA in construction management, and halfway through her apprenticeship as an electrician, Isa knows what she wants, and she’s on a mission to claim it.

When she shows up on Hunter Jackson’s job site, she has a chip on her shoulder, and an already formed opinion about the kind of man he is: rich, entitled, careless. The kind who broke her sister’s heart years ago—the kind Isa swore she would never let into her own life.

But plans don’t always work the way we want.


Assumptions can be wrong, people can change, and hearts don’t always listen to logic.

I am the youngest of three daughters and I think this is the reason I enjoy writing about love so much.

I come from a family of high school sweethearts, save myself (thank God), and I have watched how finding love, the real kind, can make a person stronger. My parents have inspired me every day because they found each other at eighteen, got married at nineteen, and never looked back. Now, 35 years later they are still going strong and it makes me realize that love really does aide us in all things.

I write young and new adult books because I think it's the time period in our lives that is the most difficult and I enjoy love stories because we all need hope. Reading about love gives me hope, so I hope my writings about love do the same for any reader who happens to glance at the pages.

I have a daughter, a Great Dane, and a beautiful husband. I love books, coffee, and my family...and shoes. Just saying.

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