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Wither (The Chemical Garden, Book 1)

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Wither was such a captivating read for me. There was so many different emotions that the story invoked that at the end I felt like I’d gone on a journey instead of just reading about one. In a future world filled with a devastated environment with half of the world being wiped out and a deadly virus that shorten the human life span to 25 for males, 20 for females, Rhine finds herself as well as the whole female population lowered down to nothing more than prize positions to the highest bidder to become a breeder or a bride. Fighting for a semblance of a normal life with her brother, Rhine life changes forever when she is captured and becomes one wife to a wealthy man living in a mansion far from home where she has to navigate the polygamous life style she’s been forced into while plotting an escape that could end in her being killed. It hurt my heart to read the cruelty that Rhine and her sister wives had to go through. Several scenes had me wanting to scream in anger and frustration. I wondered if I lived in their world, would I have had the strength and cunningness to deal with what they had to deal with. I enjoyed being pulled into their world and watch how they had to navigate the mental mind field that was their lives.Each girl had strength and though the story was told through Rhine’s eyes I was still able to connect in some way to each of them and how they interacted and affected Rhine’s world.DeStefano was able to pull my emotions into the story, making me feel for the characters whether it was happiness, pride, hate, or sadness. How one moment I felt a certain way about a character like hatred for Linden in the beginning but as the story unfolded my feelings morphed and changed to sadness and pity for him.I would have liked to know more about Gabriel and his story. There seemed so much more to him then was told. And I would have liked more stolen moments between him and Rhine. The end really didn’t feel like an ending to me but a beginning full of possibilities for a continuation of the story.Wither deals with serious issues like love, death, sex, freedom, in a great way that leaves me compelled to read on and see what would happen to these characters. I enjoyed reading Rhine’s story and to go on the emotional rollercoaster that DeStefano lead me on. Reads looking for a deeply compelling, thought proving tale that you can’t help but to feel should defiantly give Wither a read.
Chime

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What would you do if you knew you were different and somehow responsible for the bad things that happened to your family like the death of your step mother and your sister’s accident that left her damaged? This is what Briony has to deal with as she hides her secret from everyone knowing that if the truth about who she really was came out she would be headed straight to the gallows. But when a deadly illness hits her town and her home, Briony knows she has to make the ultimate choice that could end her life.Chime was an interesting story that peaked my interest after I read the synopsis. What worked for me within the story was the lyrical writing style which Franny Billingsley possessed. There was great detail which drew me into the scenery and story. While I didn’t completely connect with Briony, I understood the guilt and the sadness she as going through. At times she had me wondering if she was as evil as she thought she was. What could have worked better was the pacing; I wished it could have been a bit faster. While the writing was interesting the plot wasn't as clear as I would have like which left me confused at times. trying to figure out what was really going on. Things really didn’t start to get clear and interesting for me until around the end when the truth started to reviled itself.Overall Chime was an interesting story filled with mystery and folklore told in a lyrically compelling way, readers interested could give Chime a shot.
Die for Me

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With the influx of paranormal romances hitting the YA market I thought Die for Me would be one in the same. While it does have typical elements within the story it did have unique surprises that made it different. Which lead to an interesting story.I enjoyed how the story was set in romantic and exotic Paris, France which in my book automatically added diversity and freshness to the story. It was interesting to read how Kate, the main character, navigated her new surroundings and the handsome mysterious male Vincent. Who brought to her life new adventures and dangers. The romance between Kate and Vincent was typical and a bit fast for me, I would have liked for a bit more development and drama since how the ending played out this will clearly develop into a series. Though in the end it didn’t really detract from the story as a whole because while half the focus was set on their romance it was more on the discovery of the Revenants and how they affected and changed Kate’s life. What really captured me was the paranormal element within the story that Vincent and his friends brought. The Revenants were unique and intriguing, grabbing my attention from when they were first introduced with their powers and missions. I wish there were more of those intense scenes with the Revenants, watching them go to work and battle their enemies. Since the story was told in first person narrative through Kate’s point of view I found her to be a good strong character with a clear voice. Overall I found that I enjoyed Die for Me. Amy’s writing style was clear and entertaining and I look forward to reading more of Kate and Vincent’s story.
Starcrossed

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In Ms. Angelini debut novel we follow the main character Helen, as her world is turned upside down when new students enroll in her high school and she’s filled with the blind rage to destroy them all. Soon Helen realizes the Delos family is hiding a legendary secret that evolves her in a way that she didn’t think was humanly possible. Plus the secrets that she’s been hiding are suddenly brought to the light and she has to embrace her past or watch her future crumble.Starcrossed was an interesting read that had all the elements to be an epic read but in the end it didn’t capture me as much as I wanted it to. Don’t get me wrong it was a good story that did capture my interest at different points. I really enjoyed the beginning, it was attention grabbing and had me flipping the pages to see whether Helen and the Delos family, mainly Lucas (who I knew since the first page he was introduced was the love interest) would end up destroying each other before they even knew that they were destined for each other. Now that is a page turning situation!But then things quickly turned and the focus was put on Helen and her powers and the secrets she and the Delos family was keeping, which wasn’t totally predictable but didn’t hold my attention the way the beginning did. I really enjoy the battle of wills element within a story.Helen and Lucas were good characters, they were realistic and relatable. I wished their relationship could have developed at a slower pace and they could have gotten to know each other more. Defying the past and making up their own future, fighting the urge to fall head over heel in love with each other I feel would have added more intense moments between them. It would have been better than going from overwhelming hate and destruction to instant connection and love. Though there were little moments where I could see Helen and Lucas’s relationship changing and growing and I wanted more of that.My favorite character had to be hands down, Hector. He was gritty, in your face and yeah a bit crazy but what some call crazy I call passionate and boy was he passionate! Every scene he was in he lit up the pages and he was the only one who didn’t handle Helen with kid gloves. I hate the kid gloves treatment.What I really liked about Starcrossed was the action. Ms. Angelini didn’t hold back when it came to hurting her characters and I loved her for it! There were bloody lips, broken bones, missing teeth, the whole nine yards. I felt that the action really shined throughout the story, more so than the romance.Over all Starcrossed was a tasty story that I would like to see where Ms. Angelini takes it. With it ending like it did I feel there is way more action and drama in store.
Ten Ways to Be Adored When Landing a Lord

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In Sarah MacLean's newest tale she was able to capture all the magic, adventure and steamy hot romance that her made her first historical romance such a success. In this story we now focus on Gabriel's twin brother Nicholas St. John who we met briefly in the first story 9 Rules To Break When Romancing A Rake, now in his own story he defiantly holds his own bringing all that quite intensity, intrigue and drama to the forefront. Drawing in Isabel Townsend, his love interest, who has secrets of her own and little do she know all the drama and action that comes to her and her house inhabitants with her newest house guest. She surely didn't expect for Nicolas St. John to show up at her door and Nicholas didn't expect to fall for the woman behind it. Isabel's quite world in the country and Nicholas quite solitary life soon becomes the center of action that will change Nicolas and Isabel's lives forever.Sarah MacLean took me on an entertaining wild ride with two such strong captivating characters both carrying secrets and fighting for a love that they couldn't fathom happening to them. I really enjoyed how independent and strong both characters were, especially Isabel who had the courage to take life in both hands when things were at there worst and make things better for her and her little brother. During the time period it was refreshing to see a lady not afraid to do what needed to be done, not trying to find a man to fix things for her. I enjoyed Nicholas a.k.a Nick's heart and how caring and genuine he was. How he came to understand and care for Isabel and the others and in overcoming his needs to try and be the hero realized the value in having a partner who was willing to love him as much as he did. The chemistry and courting between Nicholas and Isabel had me on edge flipping page after page to see what would happen next and who would find out the others secret first and whether their growing love could stand after all the truths came out. I liked how MacLean integrated all the rules into the story which added another level of humor to the story. As I said before Sarah MacLean did another amazing job telling a story filled with humor, action, suspense, drama and romance and I can't wait for her next book.
Kiss of Snow

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In the long standing Psy/changeling series I have instantly been captured by Ms. Singh’s writing and dynamic characters. With Kiss of Snow, the 10th book in the series, my excitement was still there and I’m happy to say my expectations were met. In previous stories within the series Hawke and Sienna made appearances as their story was developing and it captured my attention every time. So I was very interested to see how Ms. Singh would solve all the problems standing in their way. And let me tell you there are a lot of problems.The biggest one I felt was the big age difference between Hawk and Sienna, mostly with Hawk being a supernatural being that aged slower than human or Psy. That was a sticky issue that could have easily turned south. But with Ms. Singh’s writing skills she turned it so that the actual age between Hawke and Sienna was addressed but wasn’t as big a factor (Though it was a big factor for Hawke, showing that he wasn’t some perv) as the mutual maturity between the two. In the end it wasn’t uncomfortable for me. Sienna had such maturity being a Psy and going through so much in her life that she totally held her own against the strong willed Hawke, not letting him take over her world which was a power struggle between them. (FYI though Sienna is younger than Hawke she is legally an adult so no laws were broken).I really enjoyed the clash of wills between these strong interesting characters and how their bond grew over so much time and finally came to a head in Kiss of Snow. Their passion was sizzling and their romance was heartwarming. The plot was intense and action packed. I was equally drawn into world as well as the situations as I was the romance. I enjoyed the side romance as well it didn’t detract from Hawke and Sienna’s story but enhanced the world building, showing that things were also happening around them.Since this is a book within a series, readers don’t have to read the past books to understand what is going on because it’s a companion novel set in the same world but I do recommend reading the past books so that one can get the full impact of the story.Once again Ms. Singh delivered an engrossing passionate paranormal romance that romance readers should defiantly pick up.
Eleven Scandals to Start to Win a Duke's Heart

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Ever since I picked up McLean’s first historical romance Nine Rules To Break When Romancing A Rake I was instantly drawn into her world of English society and passion. In the third book to her Love by Numbers series the focus is on Juliana, the younger sister of twin brothers Gabriel and Nicolas St. John, who finds her love in the most unlikely person. The prim and proper Simon Pearson, Duke of Leighton. Now Simon has a great aversion to gossip and scandal which Juliana was cloaked in ever since she stepped into England and Gabriel and Nicolas’s lives, so I was curious and excited to figure out how her and Simon relationship would go. McLean is known for bringing adventure and sizzling hot excitement to the historical London society and she defiantly brought it and more with this story. The romantic tension between Juliana and Simon was off the charts and I loved how Juliana’s strong personality slowly striped away at Simon’s cold proper shell, showing him to be the hot blooded male filled with passion that he kept tightly contained. From the start I was drawn into the story and was taken on a wild ride filled with scandals that I didn’t want to end. Though this is a romance with the predictable ending of happily ever after, Mclean made the journey sizzling hot and adventurous. With so much intrigue that ultimately me questioning all the way up until the end. Overall I really enjoyed everything about Eleven Scandals to Start To Win a Duke’s Heart and recommend this book to romance readers.
Dragon Bound

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In this new paranormal romance be prepared to be taken on a wild ride filled with action, shape-shifters and hot romance. Pia Giovanni finds her life turned upside down as a forced favor from her ex leaves her on the run for stealing from the most powerful man in New York and Wyrkind, Dragos Cuelebre. Pia knows her days are numbered and flees the city with Dragos fast on her heels. Soon she’s pulled into a supernatural rivalry battle and fighting off feelings for a man set out to make an example of her. To teach her and everyone that it’s a really, really bad idea to steal from a dragon. I really enjoyed Dragon Bound and the wild ride it took me on. Pia was a funny down to earth heroin who was strong and wise enough to know when it was time for her to get out of doge. The romance between Pia and Dragos was hot, stormy and exciting. I was just as enraptured by the chase as Dragos. I didn’t know whether they would jump each others bones or fight to the death.Dragos was thee alpha male, sexy and strong. I loved watching his world get turned around by the feisty Pia. The adventure these two were on allowed for some great action scenes and world building also allowing for their relationship to grow and morph into something nether one of them expected. Overall, Dragon Bound was a great start to The Elder Races series. Ms. Harrison created an engaging world filled with unique characters and situations that I can’t wait to discover. More please!
Rush of Darkness

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This was the first book that I read from Rhyannon Byrd and her Primal Instinct series and I have to say that I enjoyed the story. Faced with a past abduction that changed her life forever, Raine Spencer finds herself facing her past hang on. Instead of trying to forget her past and what was done to her, Raine decides to face it and find and destroy all of her abductors. Things really start to heat up when Seth, one of the warriors who were on the rescue team that broke her out, decides to join her on her quest to capture the master mind behind the abduction, Kraven. Now Raine is a powerful vampire psychic and Seth used to be a vampire hunter so the tension between these two characters is instantly raised, add the strong sexual attraction that they have for each other that keeps on building every time they are near and you have one entertaining read. The big question on my mind was whether they would kill each other or love each other. What worked for me in Rush of Darkness was the interestingly unique world that Rhyannon Byrd created. Rain and Seth were strong characters in their own right and it made for a page turning read to see how these two would get together. The writing was clear and understandable and even though this is the seventh book in the series, I wasn’t confused or felt like I was missing anything.What could have worked better for me was the ending. I thought that it was a bit too convenient and clear-cut. This was such an engaging story I thought that there could have been more struggle and growth between Raine and Seth and their mission to find and destroy a Kraven. The more action and struggle, the more I care about what happens to them. So bring on the action and struggle I say!!!Overall Rush of Darkness was a great engaging story, with strong interesting characters and a steamy hot romance. I’m looking forward to Rhyannon Bryd’s newest installment two the Primal Instinct series. Readers interested in a paranormal romance should give Rush of Darkness a try.
Dreams of a Dark Warrior

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In reading Dreams of a Dark Warrior I’ve learned a valuable lesson from Ms. Cole. That a reincarnated love can become an intense and somewhat dangerous situation. Like our protagonist Regin the Radiant found out when her lost love Aidan the Fierce came back as Declan Chase, a different kind of warrior with an occupation she least expects.As usual with Ms. Cole leading ladies, Regin was a tough chick that didn’t take any bull from anyone but on the flipside was able to laugh, party, make jokes and snide remarks that had me laughing out loud. Declan was such an intense, tormented, haunted hero, if I could even call him that, character that I couldn’t help but be drawn to him as Regin was. These two dynamic characters set the stage for an intense ride that had me flipping the page to figure out if and how they could work things out.The world building was as three dimensional as the characters and the action was as intense as the romance. Expect as much fighting as kissing within Dreams of a Dark Warrior. It was no holds barred which is my personal fav. The underlying message in the story is a strong one. How far would you go for love? Ms. Cole did a great job of answering that question within the story with characters I won’t soon forget. I’m really looking forward to the next installment.
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