November Reading Wrap Up

This month was a little hectic with us moving to a different state and getting settled in. However, even with all of that craziness, I was able to get a few books read. I really enjoyed all of them. November turned out to be a great reading month for me!

#1- The Whole Towns Talking  by Fannie Flagg

#2 Can’t Wait to get to Heaven by Fannie Flagg

#3- The Fever Tree by Jennifer McVeigh

#4-  The Red Queen by Philippa Gregory (I always enjoy her books!)

#5- A Shadow Bright and Burning by Jessica Cluess

You can find my review of ASBAB here .

#6- A Poison Dark and Drowning by Jessica Cluess

You can find my review of APDAD here .

#7- The Orphan’s Tale by Pam Jenoff

#8- The Martian by Andy Weir

#9- All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr (re-read)

#10- Daisy Fay and the Miracle Man by Fannie Flagg (don’t read if you are prone to peeing yourself when laughing)

Ten Books is not bad!! I’m pretty impressed with myself 🙂

December TBR? I have four bookshelves filled with books I’ve yet to read, plus three review books coming my way in December, not to mention hundreds yet to be read on my kindle. Other than review books, I like to let my heart and my ever changing mood dictate what I read next, so I’ll be surprised right along with you!

How many books did you read in November?

Happy Reading!

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Blogger Recognition Award

 

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I was nominated by Betwixt the Pages for the Blogger Recognition Award. Thanks for the nomination Penguin!

This is an award given by bloggers to bloggers as a recognition of all the time, talent, and bloodsweattears they put into book blogging. Huzzah to us!

Rules:

  • Thank the blogger who nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
  • Write a post to show your award.
  • Give a brief story of how your blog started.
  • Give two pieces of advice to new bloggers.
  • Select 15 other bloggers you’d like to give this award to.
  • Comment on each blog and let them know you’ve nominated them, providing a link to the post you’ve created. (Please make sure you do this step! Otherwise they won’t know you’ve tagged them.)

 

How I got started:

I actually got started in the blogging hemisphere not too long ago, and only really became active recently, and the reason was totally selfish: FREE books. I needed a way to feed my reading cravings and so reviewing books seemed to be the way to go. I was already reviewing books on YouTube ( you can find my channel here) and I didn’t realize that I could receive books for free by doing the same thing, just blogging instead of YouTube. Thus, She Reads Reviews was born.

However, what started with selfish reasons has opened up doors to reach out and connect with other like minded readers, and also unlike minded readers, and bounce book suggestions and theories off of each other. I love the community that blogging has opened up for me.

 

My Blogging Advice:

 

Ummmm…Well, I’m very green in this area, and am just finding out what it really takes to be a book blogger, so I’m not sure what sound advice I can offer other than this: FOLLOW OTHER BOOK BLOGGERS. ALL OF THEM. And actually read, like, and comment. This is a community, am I right?! I was so surprised that once I started reaching out, how accepting the book blogging community is. If you don’t reach out, you virtually stay invisible, and then you are missing out on the best part of blogging (other than the FREE books…hollah!)

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I Recommend:

Aaaaand that’s all the nominating I’m going to do for now. Hope you enjoyed, and HAPPY READING!

A Poison Dark and Drowning by Jessica Cluess -Review

The Magicians want her to lead.

The Sorcerers want her to lie.

The Demons want her blood.

Henrietta wants to save her love.

But will his dark magic be her undoing?

Image result for A poison dark and drowning

 

 

Title: A Poison Dark and Drowning, Kingdom on Fire Book 2

Author: Jessica Cluess

Genre: YA Fantasy

Pages: 414

Publisher: Random House

Synopsis:

Henrietta doesn’t need a prophecy to know that she’s in danger. She came to London to be named the chosen one, the first female sorcerer in centuries the one who would defeat the bloodthirsty Ancients. Instead, she discovered a city ruled by secrets. And the biggest secret of all: Henrietta is not the chosen one.

Still, she must play the role in order to keep herself and Rook, her best friend and childhood love, safe. But can she truly save him? The poison in Rook’s system is transforming him into something monstrous as he begins to master dark powers of his own.

So when Henrietta finds a clue to the Ancients’ past that could turn the tide of the war, she persuades Blackwood, the mysterious Earl of Sorrow-Fell, to travel up the coast and seek out strange new weapons. And Magnus, the brave reckless flirt who wants to win back her favor, is assigned to their mission. Together, they will face monsters, meet powerful new allies, and uncover the most devastating weapon of all: the truth.

In this intoxicating second book in the Kingdom on Fire series, Jessica Cluess delivers her signature mix of magic, passion, and warriors fighting for survival against terrible odds. Here, Henrietta discovers that some old wounds are still full of poison.

 

Author:

Jessica Cluess is a writer, a graduate of Northwestern University, and an unapologetic nerd. After college, she moved to Los Angeles, where she served coffee to the rich and famous while working on her first novel, A Shadow Bright and Burning. When she’s not writing books, she’s an instructor at Writopia Lab, helping kids and teens tell their own stories.

Visit her at jessicacluess.com

@JessCluess

 

My Thoughts:

It’s so hard to review a second book of a series without accidentally spoiling the first book. So, heed this warning- don’t read this if you haven’t read A Shadow Bright and Burning! You can find my review of ASBAB here.

I loved ASBAB so much, and was so thrilled that I had a review copy of A Poison Dark and Drowning to jump right into. I loved the story line and setting of ASBAB, as well as the characters, and I couldn’t wait to have some of my questions answered in APDAD!

Can I just start by saying that I love the world building!! In APDAD, we get to see more of the fairie realm, and I really enjoyed that aspect. Cluess has such a unique voice, and her worlds are equally exceptional and unlike anything else I’ve read, yet entirely convincing, as real to me as Hogwarts or Narnia.

I appreciated that Cluess took Henrietta in the opposite direction of the common fantasy trope, making her the main character but not the heroine of the story itself. It’s so refreshing to read a story that you can’t predict every plot twist and ending as well!

In APDAD we find out more about the ancients entrance to our world, and it also uncovers the mystery surrounding Henrietta’s father, plus Mickelmas’ true role in bringing the Ancients to earth.

Another development is, of course, an added element to Henrietta’s love life. I won’t give anything away here, but just say that there BETTER be a book 3, because I NEED ANSWERS NOW! *deep breath*

All in all, A Poison Dark and Drowning is a perfect second book to the Kingdom on Fire series. Be prepared for more magic, more fighting, more love, and yes, more betrayal.

You can get your own copy of A Poison Dark and Drowning here: http://amzn.to/2zmsNp1

Get the first book in the Kingdom on Fire Series,  A Shadow Bright and Burning, Here: http://amzn.to/2hRFYav

 

I received this book from Bloggingforbooks.com in exchange for my honest review. All opinions stated above are my own.

Some of the links above are amazon affiliate links. Using them helps support She Reads Reviews to put out more content on a regular basis without costing you anything. Thanks for your support!

 

Happy Reading!

 

 

A Shadow Bright and Burning -Review

 

 

Title: A Shadow Bright and Burning
Author: Jessica Cluess
Genre: YA Fantasy
Pages: 404
Random House Teens

Synopsys:

I am Henrietta Howel. The first female sorcerer in ages. The prophesied one.
Or am I?

When Henrietta is forced to reveal her power to save a friend, she expects to be executed. Instead, she’s invited to train as one of Her Majesty’s royal sorcerers. Thrust into glamour of Victorian London, Henrietta is declared the chosen one, the girl who will defeat the Ancients, bloodthirsty demons terrorizing humanity. She also meets her fellow sorcerer trainees, handsome young men eager to test her power and her heart. One will challenge her. One will fight for her. One will betray her.
But Henrietta is not the chosen one. With battle looming, she will have to decide how much she’s willing to risk to save the city- and the one she loves.

Author Bio:

Jessica Cluess is a writer, a graduate of Northwestern University, and an unapologetic nerd. After college, she moved to Los Angeles, where she served coffee to the rich and famous while working on her first novel, A Shadow Bright and Burning. When she’s not writing books, she’s an instructor at Writopia Lab, helping kids and teens tell their own stories.
Jessicacluess.com
@JessCluess

Review:

It’s hard to coherently say how much I loved a book without babbling like a mad woman. A Shadow Bright and Burning completely held me captive until the very end. Every spare minute I had, and even those minutes I really couldn’t spare, were spent gobbling up this delicious treat.
Sometimes fantasy novels are hard for me to read without feeling completely lost in all of the world building processes. So, I was very pleased when our main character, Henrietta Howel, also doesn’t completely understand her world, so we get to discover it along with her. It makes for a less confusing, overall pleasant reading experience when I don’t feel like I’m playing “catch-up” for the first few (sometimes more) chapters.
I adore fantasy novels set in Victorian London, so ASBAB did not disappoint!! I don’t want to dive too deep into setting details, because there are spoilers hidden there, but I’ll say that I could picture everything very clearly in my mind while reading!
The “monsters” and evil forces were also seriously freaky. I think that authors have to balance that tricky divide between truly scary, and downright cliché or cheesy, and in my opinion Jessica Cluess is a superstar!
All the plot twist were unexpected, and I had actually been spoiled prior to reading ASBAB, but I was still shocked and caught off guard every time! That’s talent!
I loved all the characters, and the multiple relationships Henrietta had with all of them. Add in a love triangle and you have all the ingredients for a great read.
Henrietta herself is a loveable/hateable/relatable main character. I appreciated her dry humor, coupled with Magnus’ flirtatious and witty prose.
I recommend ASBAB not just to established YA fantasy fans, but to anyone who’s never read fantasy before and would like to give it a try.
You can pick up your copy of A Shadow Bright and Burning  on amazon Here

Also, just released, Kingdom on Fire, Book 2: A Poison Dark and Drowning!!!!

 

can something just be said about these STUNNING book covers?!

 

You can get your copy of A Poison Dark and Drowning on amazon Here

Review of APDAD coming up next! Stay tuned!

What are your thoughts? If you have read this, I’d love to discuss some theories down below! Also, team Magnus, or team Rook?

HAPPY READING!

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Where We Belong – Book Review

Join two incomparable sisters on adventures that span the decades and cross the globe.

 

As a long time reader of the Christian Fiction classics it’s hard to believe that I hadn’t read any of Lynn Austin’s works. In fact, I only just discovered her novels on Pinterest, and just had to read one. So, when I was offered the chance to read Austin’s latest novel, Where We Belong, I jumped at it.

 

Here is the book description:

 In the city of Chicago in 1892, the rules and expectations for Victorian women are strict, their roles in life limited. But sisters Rebecca and Flora Hawes are not typical Victorian ladies. Their love of adventure and their desire to use their God-given talents have taken them out of society ballrooms and delivered them to the Sinai Desert- and into the teeth of a sandstorm.

Accompanied by Soren Petersen, their somber young butler, and Kate Rafferty, a plucky street urchin learning to be their lady’s maid, the two women are on a quest across the desert, chasing rumors of an important biblical manuscript.

As the expedition becomes ever more dangerous and uncertain, all four travelers sift through memories and adventures of their past, recalling the events that shaped them and the journeys and providence that brought them to this very time and place.

 

I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this book! Austin has a rare talent, which is being able to weave together different story plots harmoniously without losing the reader along the way. She is a wonderful story teller and I am looking forward to reading her again!

The Proving Book Review

Fans of Beverly Lewis will not be disappointed!

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Beverly Lewis’ latest novel fulfills the standard her previous stories have set for her over the years. As a reader, I know I can always turn to Lewis for  a solid story with plenty of love, Amish flavor, and of course, just the right amount of drama and a dash of suspense. The Proving has done just that!

Book Description:

After five years as an Englisher, Amanda Dienner is shocked to learn her mother has passed away and left her Lancaster County’s most popular Amish bed-and-breakfast. What’s more, the inn will only truly be hers if Mandy can successfully run it for twelve months. Reluctantly, Mandy accepts the challenge, no matter that it means facing the family she left behind- or that the inn’s clientele expect an Amish hostess! Can Mandy fulfill the terms of her inheritance? Or will this prove a dreadful mistake?

 

“Mandy, you are to inherit the farmhouse, including the business of the inn.” She could scarcely find her voice to respond.

“Ach, this must be a mistake,” she told him, shaking her head as she talked into the phone, feeling befuddled. “The house…and everything related to the inn…shouldn’t that go to Arie Mae?”

I received this book from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for my honest review.

Ink & Bone Review

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KNOWLEDGE IS POWER

Book Description:

Ruthless and supremely powerful, the Great Library is now a presence in every major city, governing the flow of knowledge to the masses. Alchemy allows the Library to deliver the content of the greatest works of history instantly- but the personal ownership of books is expressly forbidden.

Jess Brightwell believes in the value of the Library, but the majority of his knowledge comes form illegal books obtained by his family. Jess has been sent to be his family’s spy, but his loyalties are tested in the final months of his training to enter the Library’s service.

When his friend inadvertently commits heresy by creating a device that could change the world, Jess discovers that those who control the Great Library believe knowledge is more valuable than any human life- and soon both heretics and books will burn….

Blurbed by Tamora Pierce, Deborah Harkness and USA Today!

In an exhilarating new series, New York Times Bestselling Author Rachel Caine rewrites history, creating a dangerous world where the Great Library of Alexandria has survived the test of time….

My Thoughts:

Ink and Bone has been on my TBR list ever since I first heard of it. I had many expectations, and I can truthfully say they were fulfilled in Ink and Bone!

I got this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for my honest review.