book reviews

Book Review: The Invisible Life of Addie Larue

In the vein of The Time Traveler’s Wife and Life After LifeThe Invisible Life of Addie LaRue is New York Times bestselling author V. E. Schwab’s genre-defying tour de force.

A Life No One Will Remember. A Story You Will Never Forget.


France, 1714: in a moment of desperation, a young woman makes a Faustian bargain to live forever—and is cursed to be forgotten by everyone she meets.

Thus begins the extraordinary life of Addie LaRue, and a dazzling adventure that will play out across centuries and continents, across history and art, as a young woman learns how far she will go to leave her mark on the world.

But everything changes when, after nearly 300 years, Addie stumbles across a young man in a hidden bookstore and he remembers her name.

I received a free digital copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

This was one of my most anticipated books of 2020. I am a huge fan of V.E. Schwab and this book was no exception. I loved every minute of it. Schwab is just a great writer and storyteller in general. Every book she writes just draws you in and tugs at your heart. She has such a beautiful writing style that makes her books impossible to put down (even when they are super long). 

As soon as I got the notice for the ARC, I could not wait to read it. At this point in time, I have read it twice and I’ve listened to the audio book once. I will say REREAD IT AGAIN!!! You will catch so much more the second time around! 

The ending was a complete surprise, but then again so was the story. So much time and emotion went into this amazingly dark collection of moments about a forgettable girl turned into an unforgettable story. 

Can I give this a 10 out of 5?!

Thank you kindly to the author, the publisher, and NetGalley for this review copy.

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Book Review: All Stirred Up

Inspired by Jane Austen’s Persuasion. She returned to save her family’s dying legacy–but found the ghosts of her past alive and well.

Susan Napier’s family once lived on the success of the high-end restaurants founded by her late grandfather. But bad luck and worse management has brought the business to the edge of financial ruin. Now it’s up to Susan to save the last remaining restaurant: Elliot’s, the flagship in Edinburgh.

But what awaits Susan in the charming city of Auld Reekie is more than she bargained for. Chris Baker, her grandfather’s former protégé–and her ex-boyfriend–is also heading to the Scottish capital. After finding fame in New York as a chef and judge of a popular TV cooking competition, Chris is returning to his native Scotland to open his own restaurant. Although the storms have cleared after their intense and rocky breakup, Susan and Chris are re-drawn into each other’s orbit–and their simmering attraction inevitably boils over.

As Chris’s restaurant opens to great acclaim and Susan tries to haul Elliot’s back from the brink, the future brims with new promise. But darkness looms as they find themselves in the crosshairs of a gossip blogger eager for a juicy story–and willing to do anything to get it. Can Susan and Chris reclaim their lost love, or will the tangled past ruin their last hope for happiness?

I received a free digital copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I am a huge Jane Austen fan and this book is a great retelling of Persuasion. My only issue with this was the pacing. It started off super slow and really drug through the first couple chapters and continued through the first half of the book. Then it really just sped through the end of it too fast. It just felt disconnected in a way. 

I think it was a very interesting take on the Austen classic and I would recommend it for anyone who enjoys Austen’s stories. 

Thank you kindly to the author, the publisher, and NetGalley for this review copy.

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Book Reviews: The Hollow Places

A young woman discovers a strange portal in her uncle’s house, leading to madness and terror in this gripping new novel from the author of the “innovative, unexpected, and absolutely chilling” (Mira Grant, Nebula Award–winning author) The Twisted Ones.

Pray they are hungry.

Kara finds the words in the mysterious bunker that she’s discovered behind a hole in the wall of her uncle’s house. Freshly divorced and living back at home, Kara now becomes obsessed with these cryptic words and starts exploring this peculiar area—only to discover that it holds portals to countless alternate realities. But these places are haunted by creatures that seem to hear thoughts…and the more one fears them, the stronger they become.

With her distinctive “delightfully fresh and subversive” (SF Bluestocking) prose and the strange, sinister wonder found in Guillermo del Toro’s Pan’s LabyrinthThe Hollow Places is another compelling and white-knuckled horror novel that you won’t be able to put down.

I received a free digital copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I really connected with Kara’s character a little too much. I kind of love the moments where Kara would get lost in her head. It made me really resonate with her. A lot of people have had an issue with the internal dialogue, but I really enjoyed it. I am one of those people who have a lot of internal dialogue with myself, so I enjoyed it. 

Overall, this was a great horror sci-fi that I just really loved.

Thank you kindly to the author, the publisher, and NetGalley for this review copy.

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Book Review: Ruthless Gods

Nadya doesn’t trust her magic anymore. Serefin is fighting off a voice in his head that doesn’t belong to him. Malachiasz is at war with who–and what–he’s become.
As their group is continually torn apart, the girl, the prince, and the monster find their fates irrevocably intertwined. They’re pieces on a board, being orchestrated by someone…or something. The voices that Serefin hears in the darkness, the ones that Nadya believes are her gods, the ones that Malachiasz is desperate to meet—those voices want a stake in the world, and they refuse to stay quiet any longer.
In her dramatic follow-up to Wicked Saints, the first book in her Something Dark and Holy trilogy, Emily A. Duncan paints a Gothic, icy world where shadows whisper, and no one is who they seem, with a shocking ending that will leave you breathless.

I received a digital advanced reader copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I read Wicked Saints when it came out in April of this year and it had to be one of the bloodiest and darkest novels I have ever read. But Ruthless Gods takes the cake, it is bloodier and darker than its predecessor by 100 percent 

I did find the story to be a bit repetitive. It felt like I was rereading Wicked Saints with more blood and gore. I did really like this better than the first of the series, which is saying something because I truly enjoyed Wicked Saints. 

The pace in this book was much faster than the first book and the action definitely keeps you in suspense and glued to the page. 

The ending had me really confused, but I think that it was part of the books magic because even the characters seemed really confused. My heart breaks for Nayda. I really just want things to work out for her. Malachiasz and Nadya will be the death of me, I am sure of it. I just want them to get their happy ending. I find their story so compelling and I just want all the happiness in their chaos ridden lives. 

I cannot wait for the next installment. It is such a good read. I hate that now I have to wait even longer since I got this one early!

Thank you so much to Emily Duncan, NetGalley, and St. Martin’s Press for sending me a digital copy of this book for review.
Image and Synopsis taken from Netgalley.

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Book Review: The Sound of Stars

Two years ago, a misunderstanding between the leaders of Earth and the invading Ilori resulted in the deaths of one-third of the world’s population.

Seventeen-year-old Janelle “Ellie” Baker survives in an Ilori-controlled center in New York City. Deemed dangerously volatile because of their initial reaction to the invasion, humanity’s emotional transgressions are now grounds for execution. All art, books and creative expression are illegal, but Ellie breaks the rules by keeping a secret library. When a book goes missing, Ellie is terrified that the Ilori will track it back to her and kill her.

Born in a lab, M0Rr1S (Morris) was raised to be emotionless. When he finds Ellie’s illegal library, he’s duty-bound to deliver her for execution. The trouble is, he finds himself drawn to human music and in desperate need of more. They’re both breaking the rules for love of art—and Ellie inspires the same feelings in him that music does.

Ellie’s—and humanity’s—fate rests in the hands of an alien she should fear. M0Rr1S has a lot of secrets, but also a potential solution—thousands of miles away. The two embark on a wild and dangerous road trip with a bag of books and their favorite albums, all the while making a story and a song of their own that just might save them both.

I received a digital advanced reader copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

What a wonderful debut novel by Alechia Dow! I love alien stories, I really just adore anything to do with space. I grew up watching things like Star Trek and Doctor Who, so when I read the synopsis of this book I knew I had to read it as quickly as I could. 

From the first page, I was immediately transported into Dow’s fantasy world. Dow is phenomenal at world building and I really felt like I was right there.  I did feel like the book dragged a bit during the middle, but overall it was fantastic. 

I loved that the book contains real life issues we are facing in today’s society and how they were weaved in and out through every chapter. There are tons of current pop culture references throughout this book, so it is not really something that can be  “timeless” read. However, the story would have been really lacking if those references weren’t a part of it. I love the general theme of music can help you get through tough situations. 

The relationship between Ellie and Morris was my favorite. It felt so genuine and unique. It wasn’t rushed or forced it was just pure, innocence, beautifully organic. Dow’s writing style keeps you wanting more. I really do hope we see a sequel to this. Maybe I am a sucker for a series.. But I really want to know more about Morris and Ellie and their future together. 

Thank you so much to Alechia Dow, NetGalley, and Harlequin TEEN Publishing for allowing me to review this book.
Image and synopsis taken from NetGalley

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Book Review: Coral

There’s more than one way to drown.
Coral has always been different, standing out from her mermaid sisters in a society where blending in is key. Worse yet, she fears she has been afflicted with the dreaded Disease, said to be carried by humans—emotions. Can she face the darkness long enough to surface in the light?
Above the sea, Brooke has nothing left to give. Depression and anxiety have left her feeling isolated. Forgotten. The only thing she can rely on is the numbness she finds within the cool and comforting ocean waves. If only she weren’t stuck at Fathoms—a new group therapy home that promises a second chance at life. But what’s the point of living if her soul is destined to bleed?
Merrick may be San Francisco’s golden boy, but he wants nothing more than to escape his controlling father. When his younger sister’s suicide attempt sends Merrick to his breaking point, escape becomes the only option. If he can find their mom, everything will be made right again—right?
When their worlds collide, all three will do whatever it takes to survive, and Coral might even catch a prince in the process. But what—and who—must they leave behind for life to finally begin?

I received a digital advanced reader copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I am usually a sucker for retellings, but this one was just okay. I am also a sucker for books written in multiple perspectives, and again this was just okay. I felt really confused most of the time. It jumped too much and too quickly from person to person and made me feel a bit whiplashed. 

I felt something was missing from this story and I just can’t put my finger on it.. It just didn’t grab my attention. As I said before, I love retellings and this one did not really feel like a true retelling. Despite reading the phrase “the Little Mermaid” 100 times in the book. I wouldn’t have really compared like I usually do a retelling. I feel this is more of it’s own book than a retelling of the Little Mermaid. 

Kudos, to the author for tackling such tough and sensitive issues such as suicide and mental illness. But there really should be more of a trigger warning for this title. 

The writing style while wonderfully descriptive, was still a bit confusing. I wish it had been just a little easier to get through because I really wanted to love this book. 

Thank you kindly to Sara Ella, NetGalley, and Thomas Nelson Fiction for allowing me to review this title.
Image and synopsis taken from NetGalley.