Tuesday, January 23, 2018

REVIEW: The City of Brass by S. A. Chakraborty

Book Blurb: Nahri has never believed in magic. Certainly, she has power; on the streets of 18th century Cairo, she’s a con woman of unsurpassed talent. But she knows better than anyone that the trade she uses to get by—palm readings, zars, healings—are all tricks, sleights of hand, learned skills; a means to the delightful end of swindling Ottoman nobles.

But when Nahri accidentally summons an equally sly, darkly mysterious djinn warrior to her side during one of her cons, she’s forced to accept that the magical world she thought only existed in childhood stories is real. For the warrior tells her a new tale: across hot, windswept sands teeming with creatures of fire, and rivers where the mythical marid sleep; past ruins of once-magnificent human metropolises, and mountains where the circling hawks are not what they seem, lies Daevabad, the legendary city of brass?a city to which Nahri is irrevocably bound.

In that city, behind gilded brass walls laced with enchantments, behind the six gates of the six djinn tribes, old resentments are simmering. And when Nahri decides to enter this world, she learns that true power is fierce and brutal. That magic cannot shield her from the dangerous web of court politics. That even the cleverest of schemes can have deadly consequences.

After all, there is a reason they say be careful what you wish for.

My Review: This book... The idea of this book seemed interesting so I picked it up and I'm glad I did. It has action, adventure and a little bit of romance. I will admit that parts of this book did drag a little for me but the majority of it I enjoyed. And the ending... I wasn't expecting that. I am definitely looking forward to the next book in this trilogy.

Rating: 4½ stars out of 5

Monday, January 15, 2018

REVIEW: The Cruel Prince by Holly Black

Book Blurb: Of course I want to be like them. They’re beautiful as blades forged in some divine fire. They will live forever.

And Cardan is even more beautiful than the rest. I hate him more than all the others. I hate him so much that sometimes when I look at him, I can hardly breathe.

Jude was seven years old when her parents were murdered and she and her two sisters were stolen away to live in the treacherous High Court of Faerie. Ten years later, Jude wants nothing more than to belong there, despite her mortality. But many of the fey despise humans. Especially Prince Cardan, the youngest and wickedest son of the High King.

To win a place at the Court, she must defy him–and face the consequences.

In doing so, she becomes embroiled in palace intrigues and deceptions, discovering her own capacity for bloodshed. But as civil war threatens to drown the Courts of Faerie in violence, Jude will need to risk her life in a dangerous alliance to save her sisters, and Faerie itself.

My Review: Let me start off by saying that I have been anticipating reading this book since I first heard about it around six or so months ago. I got it and started reading it the day it came out. This is my first time reading a Holly Black novel and I was not disappointed. I was completely immersed in the world and the story. I could not put this book down and when I did it was only to take a short break. The story did drag a little bit at the beginning for me but it quickly picked up. I started off hating Prince Cardan but after you learn a little bit more about him I started feeling sorry for him.

This book started off 2018 on the right foot for me and I can't wait for the second book in the series. That probably won't happen until next year though. I do recommend picking up this book if you enjoy ready books featuring the Fae.

Rating: ★★★★☆

Sunday, January 07, 2018

REVIEW: The Comic Book Story of Video Games by Jonathan Hennessey

Book Blurb: A complete, illustrated history of video games--highlighting the machines, games, and people who have made gaming a worldwide, billion dollar industry/artform--told in a graphic novel format. 

Author Jonathan Hennessey and illustrator Jack McGowan present the first full-color, chronological origin story for this hugely successful, omnipresent artform and business. Hennessey provides readers with everything they need to know about video games--from their early beginnings during World War II to the emergence of arcade games in the 1970s to the rise of Nintendo to today's app-based games like Angry Birds and Pokemon Go. Hennessey and McGowan also analyze the evolution of gaming as an art form and its impact on society. Each chapter features spotlights on major players in the development of games and gaming that contains everything that gamers and non-gamers alike need to understand and appreciate this incredible phenomenon.

My Review: This graphic novel tells the story of the history of video games. From the Nimatron to the modern consoles and everything in between this book tells it all. I enjoyed the art that they used in the book. It's been awhile since I've seen any graphic novel that doesn't use anime-style drawings. I really enjoyed reading the history of video games as I have some interest since I'm a girl gamer. I will be passing this book on to a friend who showed an interest in reading it too.

Rating: ★★★★☆

Wednesday, January 03, 2018

REVIEW: Pride and Prejudice and a Shakespearean Scholar by Regina Jeffers

Book Blurb: Unless one knows the value of loyalty, he cannot appreciate the cost of betrayal.

What if Darcy and Elizabeth met weeks before the Meryton assembly? What if there is no barely “tolerable” remark to have Elizabeth rejecting Mr. Darcy’s affections, but rather a dip in a cold creek that sets her against him? What if Mr. Bennet is a renown Shakespearean scholar who encourages Darcy to act the role of Petruchio from Shakespeare’s “The Taming of the Shrew” to bring Elizabeth’s Katherina persona to the line?

ELIZABETH BENNET’s pride has her learning a difficult lesson: Loyalty is hard to find, and trust is easy to lose. Even after they share a passionate kiss outside the Meryton assembly hall and are forced to marry, Elizabeth cannot forget the indignity she experienced at the hands of Fitzwilliam Darcy. Although she despises his high-handedness, Elizabeth appreciates the protection he provides her in their marriage. But can she set her prejudice aside long enough to know a great love?

FITZWILLIAM DARCY places only two demands on his new wife: her loyalty and her trust, but when she invites his worst enemy to Darcy House, he has no choice but to turn her out. Trusting her had been his decision, but proving his choice the right one before she destroys two hearts meant to be together must be hers, and Darcy is not certain Elizabeth is up to the task.

My Review: I went into this book excited to read it. This is basically Pride and Prejudice meets the Taming of the Shrew. I have never actually read the Taming of the Shrew so I really have no idea what happens in that story. However, the Elizabeth in this story was very spirited and was not afraid to speak her mind. She could also hold onto a grudge too. I really enjoyed the Darcy in this story as he was until almost the end when he wouldn't even listen to Elizabeth. Wickham manages to put a rift between Lizzy and Darcy and Darcy handles it very badly. Thank goodness that Lizzy didn't put up with Darcy's crap and managed to reconcile with him.

I really enjoyed this book and I'll probably read it again in the future.

Rating: ★★★★☆

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

The Darcy's Hope Saga by Ginger Monette

Book BlurbEscape to the era of Downton Abbey with Lizzy and Darcy!
Immerse yourself in a sweeping romantic and drama-filled saga that includes two full-length novels—both Darcy’s Hope ~ Beauty from Ashes and Darcy’s Hope at Donwell Abbey.

~Volume I: Darcy’s Hope ~ Beauty from Ashes

Heartbroken. Devastated. WWI Captain Fitzwilliam Darcy was rejected by the woman he loved and vows, “No more sentimental entanglements!”

But an undercover assignment at a field hospital brings him face to face with his beloved Elizabeth—who’s working with a dashing American doctor and a prime suspect in the espionage plot.

Forced to grapple with his feelings for her, Darcy has only a few months build a lasting bridge to her and uncover the truth before she’s condemned to a traitor’s noose.

~Volume II: Darcy’s Hope at Donwell Abbey 

Darcy has won the heart of Elizabeth Bennet. Finally.

Then she vanishes.

Still reeling from the loss, Darcy attempts a heroic feat and only survives by the daring rescue of his faithful batman John Thornton.

But the damage is done. Darcy is plunged into a dark and silent world.

Sent to Donwell Abbey to recover, he’s coaxed back to life by an extraordinary nurse determined to teach him how to live and love again. A woman whose uncanny similarities to Elizabeth invite his admiration and entice his affections.

His heart tells him to hold on to Elizabeth.

His head tells him to take a chance with his nurse.

But a secret at Donwell Abbey just might change everything… 

Praise for Darcy’s Hope

-A 2016 favorite of two blogs: Just Jane 1813 and From Pemberley to Milton

-A Top 10 Retelling ~Austenesque Reviews

- “A tender romance fraught with danger in this exciting and suspenseful novel set in the midst of World War I.” ~ Jan Hahn, author of An Arranged Marriage

-“…. An engrossing read.” ~Jack Caldwell, author of The Three Colonels and The Plains of Chalmette

-“…a stellar example of fine Austenesque literature. …an exceptionally moving story complete with a compelling plot, danger, mystery, action, introspection, vivid detail, and an emotionally wrought romance.” ~Austenesque Reviews

Q: What exactly is the Darcy's Hope Saga?

A: The Saga retells Pride & Prejudice but is set during the era of Downton Abbey. It's a single ebook volume that includes two full-length novels: Darcy's Hope ~ Beauty from Ashes and Darcy's Hope at Donwell Abbey.

Readers can enjoy their beloved characters in a storyline that is familiar, yet very fresh and different.

Q: What inspired you to catapult Jane Austen's famous Fitzwilliam Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet from the early 1800’s to the early 1900’s?
A: Downton Abbey! It was remarkable to me how little British culture had changed from the Regency Era to the Edwardian Era. Darcy could have dined with Lord Grantham at Downton Abbey with little change in decorum. I was also fascinated at how the war affected everyone's lives and how wealthy English families offered their lavish homes as hospital facilities during WW1.

I began to imagine Darcy and Elizabeth's “explosive” relationship unfolding on the Western Front. Then asked, what if Darcy had his own wartime tragedy that required him to be hospitalized at a country home like Matthew Crawley? I'm thrilled that the resulting Darcy's Hope Saga has been such a big hit among fans of both Pride & Prejudice and Downton Abbey. 

Q: What would you say to romance readers who “don't do war stories?”
I would say the Darcy's Hope saga isn't a war story. It's very much a romance in a wartime setting. Just like Downton Abbey, the war provides a dramatic backdrop against which the romance blooms. The war's fast pace and ever-changing situations meant that nothing was predictable, and things could (and did) change in an instant. Readers have commented that they couldn't predict where either story was going, and much of that is due to the volatile nature of the setting.

Author Bio: Ginger currently writes riveting romances inspired by Downton Abbey and Jane Austen. Her use of compelling plot, vivid historical detail, and deep point of view has earned her stellar reviews for her Darcy's Hope saga and a grand prize for flash fiction. Living in Charlotte, NC, Ginger enjoys Pilates, period and Turkish dramas, public speaking, and reading—a full-length novel every Sunday afternoon.

-Website: www.GingerMonette.com

-Facebook: If you love Period Drama, Downton Abbey, or Jane Austen, join Ginger on Facebook at Ginger Monette Author

Buy Link: Amazon