Friday, September 20, 2019

Blog Tour: Mirror Bound by Monica Sanz- Excerpt & Giveaway


I'm super excited to be participating in the Blog Tour for Mirror Bound by Monica Sanz thanks to YA Bound Book Tours! Mirror Bound is the sequel to Monica Sanz's debut novel The Seventh Born which was one of my favourite novels of last year and is as easily as good as its predecessor!

___________________________

Conspirator. Failure. Murderer.

Seraphina Dovetail is used to being called all these things. As the seventh-born daughter to a witch, and the cause of her mother losing both her powers and her life, Sera has always felt isolated. Until Nikolai Barrington.

The young professor not only took an interest in Sera—he took her into his home, hired her for his moonlighting detective agency, and gave her the one thing she’d always dreamed of: a chance. Under Barrington’s tutelage, Sera can finally take the School of Continuing Magic entrance exam to become an inspector and find her family. Now if only she could stop her growing attraction to her maddening boss—which is about as easy as this fiery elementalist quitting setting things on fire.

But when ghosts start dragging Sera into possessions so deep she can barely escape, and then the souls of lost witches and wizards appear trapped in mirrors, these two opposites will have to work together to uncover a much deeper secret that could destroy the Witchling world…


Add on Goodreads or check out my 5 star review!

Purchase:
 
From Mirror Bound....

The outlines of ghosts appeared all around her. She cast Barrington a frantic gaze, but, consumed by his lecture, he didn’t notice her panic. But even if he did, he wouldn’t see thephantoms moments away from materializing, their presence lingering about the room like fog. Only seventhborns were burdened with the cursed second sight.

Go away, Sera thought to herself desperately. The dead had no say in the realm of the living. They had to listen to her. Yet a spirit emerged in a burst of mist, a girl with pale skin and dark circles under her eyes. Her gray dress and once-white apron were both drenched in dirt and blood.

Barrington gestured to something on the brush, and his hand moved near the protection dome.

The ghosts reached for Sera. Show you...

Cold fingers wrapped around Sera’s forearm, and she screamed. Wild flames shot to her fingertips in a manic gust, and savage flames roared from her wand, consuming the dome and Barrington’s hand.

He cursed and jerked back, clasping his burned hand in the other. The dome over their experiment vanished, and plumes of toxic smoke twisted into the air. Barrington gripped Sera’s wrist with his good hand and hurried them out into the hall. With awave of his arm, he forced the windows open, and the poisonous smoke was sucked out into the moors.

He gave her a once-over, as though to ascertain her well-being with a single look. “Are you all right?”

She nodded, though her pulse thundered within. Not only had she seen a ghost, but it had touched her...or at least she’d felt frigid fingers on her skin, a cold sensation that lingered painfully on her arm. But the dead existed on an entirely different plane; it was impossible for them to touch the living.

Had she been mistaken somehow? Perhaps, but she would have to think on it later.

Moving to Barrington’s side, she sought to inspect his injury, but it was already enveloped in a thin coating of his magic. Within moments, the burn lessened, until only a slight pink tinge remained. His sleeves, however, were charred.

“I’m fine. It was nothing,” he assured her, though the thin sheen of sweat over his brow told her it was anything but. “I must have miscalculated the amount of poison oak.”

Sera shifted back against the wall. She knew as well as he did that she’d been the reason for the accident. “I’m sorry—”

She winced and squeezed her eyes shut. The hallway felt as if it was spinning and swaying, and a headache throbbed with each pulse, the pain a constant scream drowning out all sound.

Barrington’s hands came upon her shoulders, and he brought her closer. “Ghosts?”

Sera nodded, unable to lie. Not here in his arms.

He weaved his hands into her hair. Their nearness wasdangerous, but the moment his musk of sandalwood filledher nose and his cold hands found the nape of her neck, sherested her head against his chest, lost to him.

Want more? Get your copy of Mirror Bound today!

Monica Sanz has been writing from the moment she could string together a sentence. Her stories have come a long way from mysterious portals opening in the school cafeteria, transporting classmates to distant worlds. A classic by the name Wuthering Heights is responsible for that. She's been lost to dark romances and brooding fictional men ever sense. Now she writes about grumpy professors, cursed ringmaster, tortured soul collectors, and the girls they fall in love with. Monica’s books have received many accolades on the social writing website Wattpad. She’s accumulated over six million reads, eighty thousand votes, and fifteen thousand comments since posting her books on the website. She is also a member of the Wattpad4, a group of writers who host weekly Twitter chats on the subjects of writing and publishing.

Visit Monica:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Book Shelf: Mirror Bound (The Witchling Academy #2) by Monica Sanz

Conspirator. Failure. Murderer.

Seraphina Dovetail is used to being called all these things. As the seventh-born daughter to a witch, and the cause of her mother losing both her powers and her life, Sera has always felt isolated. Until Nikolai Barrington.

The young professor not only took an interest in Sera—he took her into his home, hired her for his moonlighting detective agency, and gave her the one thing she’d always dreamed of: a chance. Under Barrington’s tutelage, Sera can finally take the School of Continuing Magic entrance exam to become an inspector and find her family. Now if only she could stop her growing attraction to her maddening boss—which is about as easy as this fiery elementalist quitting setting things on fire.

But when ghosts start dragging Sera into possessions so deep she can barely escape, and then the souls of lost witches and wizards appear trapped in mirrors, these two opposites will have to work together to uncover a much deeper secret that could destroy the Witchling world…


More info on Goodreads.....


Review: 

Mirror Bound is the second novel in The Witchling Academy series by Monica Sanz and is a darkly beguiling sequel that will rival its predecessor with is enigmatic storyline, lush writing and slow burn romance.

Seraphina Dovetail is a seventhborn; the seventh child of a witch and the cause of her mother’s loss of powers and life at the time of Sera’s birth. Scorned, ostracised and ridiculed, Sera has always felt alone. Until she met Nikolai Barrington. The young professor not only took an interest in Sera’s studies but he opened up his home to her when she was expelled from the Aetherium’s Witchling Academy. Sera dreams of becoming an Inspector and one day possibly finding her family, but with her memories locked away in her mind, finding out who she is seems like a faraway dream. Working alongside Barrington offers Sera a reprieve and an outlet for her magic and curiosity but as her affection and attraction to Barrington grows, Sera struggles with the knowledge a future between them is next to impossible. As their latest case sees missing children and ghosts dragging Sera into possessions so strong she looses grip on who she is, Sera will need to lean on Barrington and trust him with all she is if she has any hope of surviving.

I have to say before anything else that I am without a doubt bewitched by this series. Enchanted. Enthralled. Captivated. And absolutely in love with Sera and Barrington. As with the first novel Seventh Born, Monia Sanz once again sweeps her readers into a darkly magical world of defiance, magic and blossoming romance. Vivid and alluring, the setting is entrancing and protagonist Sera’s voice effortless to follow. Sanz details a rich and passionate gothic-esq atmosphere and keeps her readers bewitched with the mystery and intrigue she adds to the storyline as Sera and Barrington investigate a case of missing seventhborn children.

Mirror Bound once more unfolds through the perspective of protagonist and seventhborn Seraphina. Readers will have discovered Sera’s history in the first novel and be aware of all she must overcome as a seventhborn. Sera’s life has been one of pain, ridicule and cruelty in a society where people believe seventh children to be cursed and monsters. Sera fights to rise above her place and I genuinely adore all she is and all she is battling to become. Sera’s voice is a strong and passionate one. She’s not perfect and has her moments of vulnerability but she’s intelligent and forward thinking and genuine to follow. I feel like she has been continuously growing throughout each novel and I can only imagine the person she is going to be by series end.

After a lifetime knowing only isolation and loneliness, Sera has found a true friend and ally in the form of Nikolai Barrington, a professor and inspector who has taken her on as assistant. Theirs is a relationship full of respect and value, but also attraction, with a undeniable chemistry simmering between them. The slow burn of their romance shines throughout Mirror Bound with Monica Sanz weaving moments of electricity and tenderness to their exchanges. I adore seeing them together and have no shame in admitting their relationship is a highlight of the series for me; I devour any moments where they are together and feel like their romance has been written spectacularly by author Monica Sanz.

Rich and haunting, Mirror Bound was an exciting novel that was beautifully written and paced and features a heroine you can’t help but get behind. Monica Sanz builds this instalment to a shocking final few chapters and leaves me dying to see what is next in store for Sera and Barrington—I can’t wait for the opportunity to join them in their adventures once again!  

Rating:
Source: Sent for review by YA Bound Book Tours and the author (Thank you ladies!)
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Format: Kindle ebook
Release Date:
September 10th 2019 
Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks
Final Thoughts: Mirror Bound was a fabulous sequel and I can't wait for more of Sera and Barrington!


Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Waiting on Wednesday #285

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking The Spine where you can spotlight an upcoming release that you're eagerly anticipating.

This week I'm waiting on.....
 
All These Monsters by Amy Tintera 
Releases: July 7th 2020

From New York Times best-selling author Amy Tintera, a high-stakes sci-fi adventure about a teen girl who will do anything to escape her troubled home—even if that means joining a dangerous monster-fighting squad. Perfect for fans of Warcross and Renegades.

Seventeen-year-old Clara is ready to fight back. Fight back against her abusive father, fight back against the only life she’s ever known, and most of all, fight back against scrabs, the earth-dwelling monsters that are currently ravaging the world. So when an opportunity arises for Clara to join an international monster-fighting squad, she jumps at the chance.

When Clara starts training with her teammates, however, she realizes what fighting monsters really means: sore muscles, exhaustion, and worst of all, death. Scrabs are unpredictable, violent, and terrifying. But as Clara gains confidence in her battle skills, she starts to realize scrabs might not be the biggest evil. The true monsters are the ones you least expect.


Thoughts: 
I LOVE Amy Tintera's novels--I've read them all--and am sooooo looking forward to All These Monsters! The tentacle on the cover makes me think about the monsters in Tremors and I'm super excited to read this as soon as it comes out. 

What do you think of All These Monsters?
And what are YOU waiting on this week?


Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Book Shelf: Styx & Stones by Carmen Jenner

A heartbreaking mature YA novel from the author of the bestselling contemporary romance, Harley & Rose.

Cancer sucks … and then you die.

Alaska Stone is everything I've ever dreamed of.

For years, I’ve watched her in the halls, wanted her, but she never knew I existed.

Not until she walked into my chemo session.

For me, it was love at first sight.

For her? It might take a little longer.

But hey, it’s not like we’re on a deadline or anything.


More info on Goodreads....

Review:

Styx & Stones is a heartfelt and poignant YA read from bestselling author Carmen Jenner that will bewitch readers with its moving and emotional storyline and tangible, genuine characters.

Seventeen year old Styx Hendricks thinks cancer sucks and why shouldn’t he? He beat it once and now its come back worse then ever. Chemo makes him weak and sick and Styx is so over putting poison in his body. There’s nothing in life to be positive about….until Alaska Stone walks into his chemo session. Alaska has always been Styx’s dream girl and it seems like a cruel twist of fate that she’s finally noticing him when things seem so grim but Styx is determined to prove to Alaska that there are things more important than dying, and living—and loving—is the most important of them all.

I knew heading into this novel that Carmen Jenner was going to break my heart. How could she not? Anyone who has read Harley & Rose knew how Styx’s story was going to end. There wouldn’t be a “happy ending” for this lovable dork, but Jenner surprised me by the amount of wonder, sweetness and joy she packed into this novel—Styx & Stones is a story about true love, exploration and living in the moments you have, especially when your future isn’t guaranteed. And I think it was absolutely beautiful.

Styx & Stones unfolds through the dual perspectives of main characters Styx Hendricks and Alaska Stone, switching back and forth between them throughout the novel. Both Styx and Alaska have sharp, distinct voices and Carmen Jenner explores a tough topic—kids with cancer—in a very respectful, genuine but entertaining way. This story is actually really fun. Until the final few chapters, it’s often easy to forget how dire our protagonists situations are as they spend time together.

Styx and Alaska are adorable and awkward and just honestly normal teenagers facing the biggest fights of their lives. They’re also falling in love; in the middle of all the pain and uncertainty and fear they’re facing, they slowly find unexpected friendship and love with each other. It’s really sweet seeing them stumble through their feelings and I feel like Jenner did this so perfectly. There’s an innocence to their romance as they experience physicality with each other and tenderness as they fall in love. It’s heartbreaking knowing their time together will be short, but uplifting too as at least they have experienced love during what little time they have.

I’ll try not to give away too many spoilers, but there were aspects of this novel I really wasn’t expecting; both good and bad. I was expecting to have Styx break my heart, but Alaska was unexpected and given how much I came to love these two quirky teens, seeing their pain was heartbreaking and emotional and gut wrenching….BUT the very ending of Styx & Stones is also very hopeful so I will forgive Carmen Jenner for the emotional roller-coaster she took me on.

Beautifully written, thoughtful and moving, Styx & Stones is a powerfully told novel that allows readers to experience a whole spectrum of emotion as Carmen Jenner proves that she can write anything---adult, NA and now YA-- and knows how to get the most out of her readers with Styx & Stones that in my opinion deserves to right up there with The Fault in Our Stars and A Walk To remember as one of those timely, spectacular stories.

Rating:
Source: Sent for review by author (Thank you Carmen!)
Publisher: Published by author
Format: Kindle ebook
Release Date: September 3rd 2019
Buy: Amazon
Final Thoughts: I loved this novel and thought it was beautiful--I highly reccomend a read!


Monday, September 16, 2019

Owl Post #237


Inspired by The Story Siren's In My Mailbox, Owl Post allows us bloggers to showcase the books we've bought, won or received throughout the week and is hosted by Brodie over at Eleusinian Mysteries. We all know that the Owl Post is the fastest way to send and receive mail and they certainly make me happy every time they drop a book off.
 
Hello book lovers and welcome to this weeks Owl Post :)
 
For Review:
 From Pan Macmillan Australia:
- Five Dark Fates by Kendare Blake 
I've really enjoyed this Three Dark Crowns series and am keen to read this final instalment. Can't wait to see how it all ends!
 
....Thank you team!
 
I Bought:
 - The Rising by Kelley Armstrong 
I love Kelley Armstrong's books and can't wait to meet her next year at the Ballgown and Books event!

- The Great Hunt by Wendy Higgins 
- The Great Pursuit by Wendy Higgins
I bought these books with the intention of getting them signed but unfortuntely Wendy is no longer able to attend BABE. They still sound fabulous however and I can't wait to read this duology.


What did the owls bring you this week?


Sunday, September 15, 2019

Book Shelf: Forged by Desire (London Steampunk #4) by Bec McMaster

A fear she can't escape....

Nine years ago, Perry fled her thrall contract to find sanctuary among the Nighthawks. In that time, she's become a respected member of the Guard, and she's wanted Garrett Reed for as long as she can remember. But when a new case takes a chillingly familiar turn, Perry finds herself once again in the path of a madman...only this time, there's nowhere left to run.

A desire that can't be tempered...

Out of their depth and racing against time, Perry and Garrett must learn to trust the desire sparking between them...or risk losing themselves forever to the darkness stalking London's streets.
 


More info on Goodreads.....


Review:

Forged by Desire is the fourth novel in the London Steampunk series by Bec McMaster and is a passionate and explosive tale of romance, vampires and danger.

Nine years ago Perry fled a thrall contract and joined the Nighthawks, becoming a respected and capable member of the team. Perry has found happiness in her new life and a best friend in Garret Reed, fellow Nighthawk and the man Perry has loved for years. Garret has recently taken on the role of Guild Master and leader of the Nighthawks but it’s the recent change in his friendship with Perry that has been foremost on his mind....and the way he suddenly burns for her. Perry has put her old life behind her but when a recent case show stark similarities to something in her past, Perry must confront it in order to move on and explore the desire that summers between her and Garret before it’s too late....

As the fourth instalment in a deliciously addictive and romantic steampunk series, Forged by Desire is another highly enjoyable read. Featuring Nighthawk members Garrett and Perry, Forged by Desire is passionate, steamy and oh, so good. I admit it’s not my favourite in the series—probably the one I’ve enjoyed least so far, but it was still an amazing novel that captured my attention from the very beginning until the end.

Garrett and Perry are our main characters and individuals who have known each other for years. Though Perry has been secretly in love for Garrett for a long time, it is only recently that he has begun to see her as more than just his partner and friend. He has finally opened his eyes to her as a woman, and discovered that she is a woman he very much wants.

Garrett and Perry were both wonderful characters, with Perry being a real mystery in recent novels as she hinted at a wealthy upbringing. It was great to finally discover Perry’s past and to see Garrett pursue Perry so diligently. Garrett knew what he wanted—Perry—and was determined to show her that the was the man for her, even as she fought to protect him from the monsters of her past.

Bec McMaster continues to sweep me up with this series. I’m in love with the characters and the steampunk world McMasters has so perfectly crafted. I enjoy seeing former leads weave in and out of the novels and falling in love with new protagonists time and time again. I’m ready to jump straight into Leo’s story now for I have no doubt it’s going to be brilliant!

Rating:
Source: Purchased by me
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Format: Paperback
Release Date: September 2nd 2014
Buy: Angus & Robertson | Booktopia | The Book Depository | Amazon
Final Thoughts: A solid read and very enjoyable.


Friday, September 13, 2019

Blog Tour: The Necromancer’s Bride by Kat Ross- Excerpt & Giveaway


Welcome to the Blog Tour for The Necromancer’s Bride by Kat Ross thanks to Xpresso Book Tours! I'm thrilled to be helping Kat Ross share this brilliant book with the world and highly recommend.
__________________________

Forgiveness is not Gabriel D’Ange’s strong suit.

A self-appointed soldier of God with a penchant for ruthlessly punishing his enemies, he vanished after Anne Lawrence stabbed him with his own dagger.

The smart thing would be to let him go.

Unfortunately, Anne’s life isn’t just lonely without Gabriel. It’s insufferably boring.

Determined to heal the rift between them, she goes in search of her tempestuous former lover, black parasol in hand and daeva magic crackling at her fingertips. But Gabriel has his own plans afoot and Anne finds herself drawn into one of his tangled webs, much against her better judgment.

Gabriel’s nemesis has reappeared in Brussels, a vile slaver who’s plundering the Congo Free State with the blessing of King Leopold. Gabriel might be willing to give Anne a second chance, but not until Jorin Bekker’s head is lying at his feet.

Back in London, the quasi-reformed necromancer Balthazar sets his sights on the same quarry. He holds a very personal grudge against Bekker — and killing him might be the only way to keep Gabriel D’Ange from Balthazar’s own throat.

When the hunters collide at a lavish gala thrown by the king, Anne learns just how far she’ll go to save the man she loves.

Note: The Necromancer’s Bride is the sequel to A Bad Breed, which should be read first.


Add on Goodreads or check out my review!

Purchase:
 
From The Necromancer's Bride....


Anne usually rose with the sun, but a feather bed made for a pleasant change from hard sand and whining mosquitoes, and she slept late the next morning. She stretched luxuriously and threw the covers off. Being clean, rested and well-fed had its advantages. Her mood was much improved and she felt ready to deflect any slings and arrows Gabriel cared to hurl at her without losing her own temper.

I’ll kill him with kindness, she thought, dragging a brush through her hair and pinning the heavy mass of it up. Just like I did before. 

Sunlight poured through the half-open shutters as she padded to the window in Gabriel’s shirt. Her own clothes would be dry by now, although the thought of donning a black dress again was unappealing. Men’s attire was much more comfortable than the torturous layers required of women. Anne threw the shutters wide, frowning as she heard grunting below.

Jacob and Julian were down in the yard, stripped to the waist and sparring with their chains. Julian was lithe and wiry like a cat, while Jacob had slabs of muscle on his chest and back, but the two seemed evenly matched. One end of the chain was fixed by an iron manacle to the wrist. The other was weighted with a heavy collar – just the right size to encircle a human neck.

But they weren’t using the chains for that purpose now. No, they were trying to tangle each other up, grappling like lunatics, heedless of the vicious bruises and cuts the heavy iron links inflicted as they whipped through the air. Anne watched, repelled and fascinated. Blood covered them both, though the wounds closed within seconds. Accelerated healing was one of the necromancers’ greatest gifts. Daevas recovered quickly, too, but not like them. 

Anne had no idea necromantic chains could be used this way. At Gorgon-e Gaz, the Antimagi carried swords. They wore the chains but only to herd their human cattle. She wondered if it was a technique of Gabriel’s invention.

The moment she thought this, he appeared from the kitchen door. Jacob and Julian broke apart, panting.

“Where’s Anne?” Gabriel asked. He looked rough and bleary-eyed, as if he’d just awakened himself.

“Still abed,” Jacob replied.

“Give him your chains,” Julian said to Jacob with a grin.

“Glutton for punishment?” Gabriel asked mockingly.

Julian smiled. “I’ll get the better of you one of these days.”

“Hope never dies,” Jacob said. “Though in your case, it really ought to be buried alive and nailed into the casket.”

And then Gabriel was pulling the shirt over his head and Anne saw how thin he’d grown, each rib prominent, though he was still corded with lean muscle. Jacob tossed him the chains, which Gabriel caught gracefully with one hand.

Anne drew a sharp breath, her fingers gripping the sill.

Don’t watch, she thought, suddenly queasy. You’ll regret it. 

But she couldn’t look away.

They squared off ten feet apart. Gabriel held the chains loosely in his left hand, leaving a coil of links to dangle at his side. His posture was relaxed, weight tipped slightly forward. He let Julian come to him and their first few exchanges were brief and testing. Then Julian seemed to tire of the foreplay, rushing forward with his mouth set in a line. Anne flinched every time the chains cracked across Gabriel’s bare flesh, though he barely seemed to register it. He absorbed the assault for two long minutes, and then his own movements became inhumanly fast and ferocious. She heard the brittle crack of bone. Seconds later, Julian lay in a groaning heap.

Gabriel sank to his haunches and held out a hand, hauling Julian to his feet. He supported him with an arm around his shoulders until Julian shook it off. Whatever had shattered seemed whole again.

“Va te faire foutre,” Julian muttered darkly.

“He thinks if he curses in French, God won’t hear him,” Jacob said.

Julian gave a ragged laugh. “Now you have to defend my honor, brother.”

“If you insist.”

“Not you, too,” Gabriel said to Jacob with a touch of irritation. He wasn’t even out of breath. “Julian already delayed my breakfast.” He glanced at the clothesline, where Anne’s knickers snapped in the breeze. “Unlike you two, I have things to do this morning.”

Jacob only smiled and coiled his chains in readiness.

And so it began again, blood running freely, the chains blurring in deadly arcs. Then Jacob did something complicated, reversing the swing in midair, and the next instant Gabriel was sitting on his rump in the dirt, ankles neatly trussed. Julian crowed and Gabriel laughed in delight and despite the stupid brutality of the entire exercise, the sound made Anne wistful. She realized she wanted more than anything to make him laugh like that again.

“Maybe I should beat the holy hell out of him,” she muttered. “That seems to do the trick.”

Want more? Get your copy today!




Kat Ross worked as a journalist at the United Nations for ten years before happily falling back into what she likes best: making stuff up. She lives in Westchester with her kid and a few sleepy cats. Kat is also the author of the dystopian thriller Some Fine Day (Skyscape, 2014), about a world where the sea levels have risen sixty meters. She loves magic, monsters and doomsday scenarios. Preferably with mutants.

Visit Kat:
a Rafflecopter giveaway