Menagerie (Menagerie – 1) by Rachel Vincent

5 stars

(Excerpt from Goodreads) When Delilah Marlow visits a famous traveling carnival, Metzger’s Menagerie, she is an ordinary woman in a not-quite-ordinary world. But under the macabre circus black-top, she discovers a fierce, sharp-clawed creature lurking just beneath her human veneer. Captured and put on exhibition, Delilah in her black swan burlesque costume is stripped of her worldly possessions, including her own name, as she’s forced to “perform” in town after town.

But there is breathtaking beauty behind the seamy and grotesque reality of the carnival. Gallagher, her handler, is as kind as he is cryptic and strong. The other “attractions”—mermaids, minotaurs, gryphons and kelpies—are strange, yes, but they share a bond forged by the brutal realities of captivity. And as Delilah struggles for her freedom, and for her fellow menagerie, she’ll discover a strength and a purpose she never knew existed.

Delilah Marlow visits Metzger’s Menagerie. While there she is taken back with the treatment of a werewolf girl and gets so worked up that she ends up sinking her claws into the handler. Delilah is then accused of hiding as a human since cryptids have no rights and is then purchased and added to the Menagerie. Since cryptids have no rights, Delilah is treated horribly. She is abused physically and mentally. But the more Delilah is there, the more she learns about the other attractions. Although she can’t help herself, she is going to do whatever she can to help the others.

I love Rachel Vincent’s books. So when I got a copy of Menagerie, I couldn’t wait to get reading. This is a very dark book, which I loved but might not be everyone’s cup of tea. Delilah is stripped of everything, even the clothes on her back. She is locked up and forced to perform for the show and face all kinds of torture. But no matter what, they won’t break her spirit and she keeps fighting. I have to say that I was leery of Gallagher but I came to love him the more I read. He is the one shining spot in all the darkness.

Although this book is dark yet really good, it makes you think about more than just the story. What would happen in real life if something like The Reaping or other events happen? Society doesn’t have a great history of being understanding to others that don’t fit in. And sadly it has a history of the darkest of all human behaviors being used in such times.

This is a great story that will make you think about so much more than just the story. It is dark and gruesome but believable. I can’t wait to see what happens in the next book.

To purchase Menagerie, or for more information, make sure to check out Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Goodreads, and Rachel Vincent’s website.

I received Menagerie for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

The Magician’s Lie



Special Offer – From Now Until Tuesday, October 6, you can get your copy of The Magician’s Lie for $1.99.

Water for Elephants meets The Night Circus in The Magician’s Lie, a debut novel in which the country’s most notorious female illusionist stands accused of her husband’s murder –and she has only one night to convince a small-town policeman of her innocence.

The Amazing Arden is the most famous female illusionist of her day, renowned for her notorious trick of sawing a man in half on stage. One night in Waterloo, Iowa, with young policeman Virgil Holt watching from the audience, she swaps her trademark saw for a fire ax. Is it a new version of the illusion, or an all-too-real murder? When Arden’s husband is found lifeless beneath the stage later that night, the answer seems clear.

But when Virgil happens upon the fleeing magician and takes her into custody, she has a very different story to tell. Even handcuffed and alone, Arden is far from powerless—and what she reveals is as unbelievable as it is spellbinding. Over the course of one eerie night, Virgil must decide whether to turn Arden in or set her free… and it will take all he has to see through the smoke and mirrors.

Get your copy to day at Amazon.

Dangerous Reflections


Dangerous Reflections (Adventures of Alexis Davenport – 1) by Shay West

5 stars

(Excerpt from Goodreads) Alexis Davenport wants to go home. She hates her new school, her mother for moving her away from her friends, and her father for walking out.

To make matters worse, Alex is haunted by images of strange girls reflected in her mirror. It’s bad enough juggling homework, a relentless bully, boys, and a deadbeat dad; now, she must save the world from an evil presence hell-bent on changing the past – and our futures. Who knew her A+ in history was going to be this important?

One morning, Alex’s dad decided to leave her and her mother after emptying the bank account. The only way to make it, Alexis’ mother moves them to her aunt’s house on the other side of the state. It is the start of her freshman year and Alex is having a tough time. There are the usual teen issues of hormones and friends but also bullies and school drama.

But things are going to get a lot tougher when Alex see’s a strange girl’s reflection in her mirror and upon closer examination she falls into that girls time period. It seems Alex has the ability to go back in time. But she goes back for a reason, someone is trying to alter time and it’s up to her to keep things on track. Thankfully Alex is very knowledgeable about history. But someone is bound and determined to change history and Alex better get ready for a fight.

I really liked this book. Alex seems like a spoiled little brat but you can kind of sympathize with her being uprooted in such a dramatic way and going to a school with such horrible bullies. But it helps shape her and kind of gets her ready to keep time on track. I loved the ability to travel back in time. I admit that I’m not really a history buff so it was fascinating all the things happening. The ending was not a happily ever after but a great lead into another book.

This is a great story, well written and engrossing. I am really excited to read book two, Twisted Reflections.

To purchase Dangerous Reflections, or for more information, make sure to check out Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Goodreads, and Shay West’s website.

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

The Silver Earth Seed


The Silver Earth Seed (The Earth Seed Adventures – 1) by Grant Morris

4 stars

(Excerpt from Goodreads) Twelve-year-old Arnold Cook has lost his memory. His only clues are the strange clothing he’s wearing and the mysterious lights that appeared in the night sky above where he was found, unconscious, in the small town of Seaburgh.

Arnold soon discovers he isn’t an ordinary boy. An ordinary boy couldn’t atomize the school bully, reducing him to a pile of dust. Or make an out of this world pool shot that would baffle the pros. With the help of a determined social worker and a zany vice-principal, Arnold learns his true identity and the vital role he plays in safeguarding the welfare of all dimensions.

The Silver Earth Seed is a middle grade/young adult fantasy book. Also for those of us adults who enjoy a good fantasy adventure into other worlds filled with magic!

Arnold wakes up on a beach at nighttime. He doesn’t know who he is or where he is at. He is greeted by a grumpy security guard that thinks he is lying and promptly deposits him at the police station. There no one believes him and he is left overnight until social worker Clarice comes and takes Arnold to a local boys home until they can find his parents.

At the home he meets a great friend, Dennis, and the other boys and gets enrolled in school. When Arnold disintegrates a bully, his true identity is revealed to the vice-principle, Mr. Jenkins. Arnold learns he is a Seraph, one of seven chosen to protect all of the worlds. But there was a struggle and he accidentally got lost in this world. But now that Arnold knows who he is, he has to find a way back home and to help the other Seraphs keep the rest of the worlds safe from attacks which are imminent.

This is a great story. It caters to the mid grade readers but is great for any age. There is a lot of action and adventure but the concept of the many worlds and the Seeds make a wonderful story. I strongly recommend reading this book, it’s a hidden gem for mid grade readers.

To purchase The Silver Earth Seed, or for more information, make sure to check out Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Goodreads.

I received this book for free from the Library Thing Early Reader Program for free in exchange for an honest review.

Rainy Day Sisters


Rainy Day Sisters: A Hartley-by-the-Sea Novel by Katie Hewitt

4 stars

(Excerpt from Goodreads) Welcome to Hartley-by-the-Sea in England’s beautiful Lake District, where two sisters who meet as strangers find small miracles tucked into the corners of every day….

When Lucy Bagshaw’s life in Boston falls apart, thanks to a scathing editorial written by her famous artist mother, she accepts her half sister Juliet’s invitation to stay with her in a charming seaside village in northern England. Lucy is expecting quaint cottages and cream teas, but instead finds that her sister is an aloof host, the weather is wet, windy, and cold, and her new boss, Alex Kincaid, is a disapproving widower who only hired her as a favor to Juliet.

Despite the invitation she offered, Juliet is startled by the way Lucy catapults into her orderly life. As Juliet faces her own struggles with both her distant mother and her desire for a child, her sister’s irrepressible optimism begins to take hold. With the help of quirky villagers, these hesitant rainy day sisters begin to forge a new understanding…and find in each other the love of family that makes all the difference.

Juliet and Lucy are sisters that have been separated by their mother’s artistic career. Juliet stayed behind in England while Lucy went with her mother to America. But everything falls apart for Lucy when her mother gives a scathing review of her art. Heartbroken and lost she turns to Juliet. Juliet offers Lucy a part time job and to stay at her bed and breakfast in England.

The problem is that Juliet and Lucy are complete opposites in personality. Lucy is bubbly and outgoing where Juliet is more personal and set to a rigid schedule. Lucy starts to wonder if it is worth her time to stay in Hartley-by-the-Sea and Juliet keeps asking herself why she offered to let Lucy stay there and ruin her schedules. Eventually the sisters start opening up to each other and even finding love.

The best part of this book was the whole growth between Juliet and Lucy. Juliet reminded me of a grumpy old woman, set in her ways and not willing to step out of those paths. Lucy is such a free spirit that her clashing with Juliet was expected. And their mother was a royal pain in the butt but she was the glue between the girls.

I really liked how each found some romance but it was off to the side as a bonus. I really enjoyed how it was more of a bonus to the real story. I admit that usually when I read the synopsis of books like this I roll my eyes and guess it’s going to be some mushy chick-read. This book really surprised me; it’s not your typical contemporary romance with flaky characters. I think that was because I feel like Juliet.

Anyway, this is a great book and one that I hope you pick up. I’m excited to see what happens for Lucy and Juliet next.

To purchase Rainy Day Sisters, or for more information, make sure to check out Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Goodreads, and Katie Hewitt’s website.

I received Rainy Day Sisters for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

To the Gallows


To The Gallows (The Legend of Cole Winters – 1) by GS Luckett

5 stars

(Excerpt from Goodreads) New Western Historical Action-Adventure Novel!

Cole Winters is one of the first African-American lawman of the Old West. In the 19th century, the Indian Territory was a place where there was a thin line between lawmen and outlaws. After being raised by Native Americans, Cole Winters was hired by the U.S. Marshals Service to track down and bring back outlaws from the Territories. Dead or alive. When his gun fighter brother, Joseph Two Guns, becomes wanted for a crime he did not commit, Cole does the only thing he can to get his brother justice… He hunts him down.

To the Gallows, is a classic Western with fast-paced gunfights and martial arts action of the time. It is the beginning chronicle of a man the Native Americans called The Buffalo Ghost and the legend that followed.

Cole Winters is an African American US Marshall. Because of being raised by Native Americans, he is the one called in to bring in fugitives from the Indian Territories. This time he is asked to bring in Joseph Two Guns. But there are two problems. The first is Joseph is Cole’s brother in law. The second is Joseph has been framed and it’s up to Cole to clear his name.

Cole and Joseph also stumble upon Jessie Wainwright, falsely accused of murder. All three go on the run to try to stay ahead of the mob ready to dispense its own justice. They also need to avoid Clement Fournier, a bounty hunter hot on Cole’s heels looking to claim Joseph for his own. It doesn’t help that Jessie’s sister has been kidnapped and they need to rescue her too.

This is a great western with lots of action, murder, and revenge. Cole and Joseph had one heck of a childhood that has left them scarred. Cole is such a strong character, especially when you learn more about his past. I loved Cole, he reminded me of Bass Reeves which is ironic since I just saw a television show about him the other day.

I admit that I usually don’t read westerns but it’s usually because not many people write that genera. Whether you like westerns or just great stories, make sure you get a copy of To The Gallows. You will not be disappointed. Now I can’t wait for the next book in this series.

To purchase To The Gallows, or for more information, make sure to check out Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Goodreads, and G.S. Luckett’s website.

I received a copy of To The Gallows for free from the author in exchange for an honest review.

The Colossus


The Colossus by Ranjini Iyer

4 stars

(Excerpt from Goodreads) A diffident catering company owner, Max Rosen, learns of the existence of a coded research document authored by her late scientist father. This research is linked to health pills that were unearthed from the site of the Indus Valley Civilization in ancient India. The pills were once the mainstay of German pharmaceutical giant Berliner that Max’s grandfather worked for. And these pills were used in horrific Nazi era medical experiments.

When Max learns that the pills and the disturbing secret they hold may be the reason why her father may not have committed suicide as she has always believed, she embarks upon a whirlwind adventure to decode her father’s research and find his killers.

In a thrilling ride that takes her and Julian McIntosh, a history professor, across the world, she must keep her wits about her or face dire consequences at the hands of Berliner and other unknown forces, who will stop at nothing to keep the research from coming out. Even as she struggles with her feelings for Julian, Max must brace herself for startling discoveries— her father’s research may well reveal a frightening truth connecting Berliner, her grandfather, and perchance, all mankind. And the shocking reality about her father’s death is one she may never be able to face.

Max Rosen great up in a family of scientists but she has become the owner of a catering company. Then she discovers some documents that link her father and grandfather to Nazi era medical experiments. Then she discovers that the story goes farther back to some pills that were discovered in a tomb in the Indus Valley. This leads Max to think that he father may not have committed suicide years ago.

Max partners up with history professor Julian McIntosh to find out the truth about Berliner and her father’s involvement with them. But as Max and Julian start digging, Berliner wants to keep that information secret and sends out people to keep Max and Julian quiet.

I really liked this story. There was a great connection between the three time periods, the story line was well put together, and just enough romance to make this story sweet. I really like all the information you get when it comes to testing new drugs. My only complaint is that Max thinks less about herself because she is bigger than the average stick model. I understand some insecurities but it did start to grate a little.

Overall this is a really good book. I can see other books in the future from Ranjini Iyer and I can’t wait to see what she comes up with next.

To purchase The Colossus, or for more information, make sure to check out Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Goodreads, and Ranjini Iyer’s website.

I received The Colossus for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.


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