Thursday 24 September 2015

Born of Treasure (Treasure Chronicles #2) by Jordan Elizabeth Mierek

It’s science, darling…
Death and diamonds often dance together.
Clark used to be a miner, until he drank from a vial he swore was absinthe but was actually an invention to give him the ability to raise the dead.  Now Clark seeks to fulfill his father's wishes to keep other inventions away from Senator Horan.  His beloved Amethyst is along for the ride.  Deceit, drama, romance, the insidious underbellies of gangs...How can she not be involved?

Clark can't hide behind the Treasure name forever and the army still wants him for his secret abilities.  If Captain Greenwood can't snare Clark, then he'll use the Treasures as collateral.  Saving his father's inventions will just have to wait, especially now that the Treasures have been kicked off their ranch and driven into exile.  Clark knows how to survive on the run, but that’s not the fate the Treasures deserve.  He can surrender to the army or fight for his freedom, but Amethyst has other plans for fixing their troubles.

She’s come across another one of the vials that gave Clark is abilities, and it looks mighty tasty.”

BORN OF TREASURE is Jordan Elizabeth’s third novel and second installment of the Treasure Chronicles series.  This young adult fantasy with elements of steampunk and romance, published through Curiosity Quills Press, is now available for purchase. 
Check out BORN OF TREASURE on GoodReads for fabulous reviews!
Jordan Elizabeth, formally Jordan Elizabeth Mierek, can often be found garbed in corsets, long skirts, and boots.  Her first novel, ESCAPE FROM WITCHWOOD HOLLOW, came out in October of 2014.  You can contact Jordan via her website,


Craving more steampunk with the Treasure family?  TREASURE DARKLY, book one of the Treasure Chronicles, is available whenever books are sold.  GEARS OF BRASS, a steampunk anthology, features a short story about Amethyst. 


Win a key necklace and matching earrings worthy of Amethyst herself!
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Our Reviews

 ***We received the eBook free as a review copy from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review***

Angelina: This is a great and exciting second instalment in the Treasure Chronicles!
This is the continuation of Clark's story starting kind of where we left off in the last book. Clark is still trying to find his dead father's dangerous inventions with the help of said father's ghost. However, the army still wants to use Clark as a test subject because he drunk the tonic that enables him to see ghosts. This causes the Treasures to lose their ranch and therefore they are on the run once again. Amethyst is taken to Senator Horan, where she finds the same tonic that Clark took. 
This book was really well written and action-packed. I found, that I enjoyed it more than the first book and that is probably because of the character development and the excitement of the plot in general. Even though it was exciting to read, I thought that the characters made some pretty silly decisions that got them in a tight situation. The world-building was done very well in the last book; however, I thought that the new powers of the tonic could be explained more and build up gradually because it all came at you at once. 
The characters developed a lot since the last book. Especially Amethyst went through a lot of further character development. She was still pretty annoying but she did start to become a pretty awesome character because she was willing to fight and wasn't scared of getting dirty. Clark was still a smart character and somehow new what decisions to make, but he did make some mistakes in this book. My favourite character was Eric, Clark's father. I liked that he was a ghost helping Clark on his journeys. 
Overall I really loved this book. The writing style made it really exciting to read. I found, that the tonic should have been built up better and that it was a bit rushed near the end. 
I give this book 4 out of 5 stars!

Whilst I did find this book enjoyable I did not find that it was quite as good as the first, but that is just my personal opinion.
The plot of this book was certainly more well developed then the first. I found myself getting excited by the plot easier and always on the edge of my seat (aka, my bed...) to find out what happens next. I finished the book in a day, partly because I had to but mostly because I enjoyed it. Anglina can back me up when I say that if I don't enjoy what I am reading it takes me weeks to finish.
There were so many characters in this book that I will just talk about Clark and Amythest.
Clark went through some serious changes in this book. He went from mostly innocent boy to someone that doesn't hesitate when the situation calls for someone to die. We don't really see him developing his powers in this book as well which I found disappointing because I really wanted to find more about these powers in detail sooner in the book rather then later. I feel kind of proud of Amythest in this book because she has almost stepped away from her dainty life and she doesn't really care about getting down and dirty anymore which was cool to read about. She also made some interesting decisions in this book which I will not say because of spoilers, but I will mention that I am conflicted on weather or not they were actually good ideas, because some things in this book can be kind of twisted in a way that you don't know what is wrong and what is right anymore. All in all I give this book 3 out of 5 stars. 

Wednesday 23 September 2015

The Whispering Skull (Lockwood & Co #2) by Jonathan Stroud

Book Blurb (from Goodreads):
In the six months since Anthony, Lucy, and George survived a night in the most haunted house in England, Lockwood & Co. hasn't made much progress. Quill Kipps and his team of Fittes agents keep swooping in on Lockwood's investigations. Finally, in a fit of anger, Anthony challenges his rival to a contest: the next time the two agencies compete on a job, the losing side will have to admit defeat in the Times newspaper. Things look up when a new client, Mr. Saunders, hires Lockwood & Co. to be present at the excavation of Edmund Bickerstaff, a Victorian doctor who reportedly tried to communicate with the dead. Saunders needs the coffin sealed with silver to prevent any supernatural trouble. All goes well—until George's curiosity attracts a horrible phantom. Back home at Portland Row, Lockwood accuses George of making too many careless mistakes. Lucy is distracted by urgent whispers coming from the skull in the ghost jar. Then the team is summoned to DEPRAC headquarters. Kipps is there too, much to Lockwood's annoyance. Bickerstaff's coffin was raided and a strange glass object buried with the corpse has vanished. Inspector Barnes believes the relic to be highly dangerous, and he wants it found.

My Review
I can't stop fangirling about the awesomeness of this book! It is fantastic! I need the next book now! OK, I need to calm down to write a proper review. Here we go!
This is the second installment in the Lockwood & Co series. It continues roughly a year after the last book. Lockwood's agency has been doing well since then and even gotten in the newspaper several times as the Agency of the Month. However, Quill Kipps' team from the Fittes agency keep on sweeping in and stealing their hauntings. Therefore George challenged them, that if they have another combined case, the loser would have to write a newspaper article admitting defeat and that the winning agency is superior to them. Then they get an immediate combined case when a dangerous relic is stolen from a coffin...
This book just blew my mind, it was absolutely amazing! I loved it so much, it was as good as the first one. Everything about this book was pure awesomeness. The deadpan humour, the plot and how everything worked out was done so cleverly. The characters were also as awesome as ever. However, I found that the plot was kind of a repetition from the first book (if you read this book you will know what I mean). I didn't really care either way because it was just as exciting to read.
I loved all the characters. I still thought that Lockwood and Lucy were meant to be but they didn't get together! There were so many hints throughout the entire book that they are meant to be! George was as hilarious and sarcastic as ever which I really liked. For some reason I can't explain, I thought that the skull and Quill Kipps became my new favourite characters. I liked the skull because of its commentary and Kipps... I don't know.
Overall, this book was absolutely epic and I recommend everyone to read this series just to say that they have. I found that the plot was a bit repeated from the first book, but The Whispering Skull certainly didn't lack any action and the pacing of the plot was also really well done.
I give this book 5 out of 5 stars!

Friday 18 September 2015

Blind by Rachel DeWoskin

18667798Book Blurb (from goodreads)
When Emma Sasha Silver loses her eyesight in a nightmare accident, she must relearn everything from walking across the street to recognizing her own sisters to imagining colors. One of seven children, Emma used to be the invisible kid, but now it seems everyone is watching her. And just as she's about to start high school and try to recover her friendships and former life, one of her classmates is found dead in an apparent suicide. Fifteen and blind, Emma has to untangle what happened and why - in order to see for herself what makes life worth living.

Unflinching in its portrayal of Emma's darkest days, yet full of hope and humor, Rachel DeWoskin's brilliant Blind is one of those rare books that utterly absorbs the listener into the life and experience of another.

My review:
I will admit that I had read this book a while back so it is not fresh in my mind during this review but I chose to review this book for a reason that I found kind of interesting myself. I have this thing that after I read the book I forgot everything apart from the plot and what the characters look like. Unless I loved the book I cant remember the character names. But somehow this book left a larger mark on my then others and I find myself remembering dialog from the book which is rare for me.
The plot in this book was slow passed and very much about the problems that Emma is going through after loosing her eyesight. We don't see the incident itself, although that would off been pretty interesting to read about so we could understand her full despair. I personally could not imagine loosing my eye sight (Because then how would I read!?) so I found myself feeling sad whilst reading this book. I just had that kind of writing style that brought out all of the feels sometimes.
Emma is a strong character in the mental self and how she handles the situation is admiral. She almost doesn't let it faze her, well she does a little bit at the beginning but she pulls it together. She learns how to read braille and goes back to her normal school. She keeps all of her family members and friends close as a support system which you don't see happen a lot in books so it was refreshing to see a character do that.
All in all I would give this book 4 out of 5 stars.

Echoes by Laura Tisdall

Book Blurb (from Goodreads):
“There is truth to be shared. Let us begin…”

Volatile mathematical genius Mallory Park is living two lives. In one, she is balancing senior year with looking after her little brother and troubled ex-Marine father; in the other, she spends her nights glued to her laptop, breaking into some of the world’s most secure systems as the hacker Echo Six.

As part of a corruption-exposing cyber network called the Forum, Mallory is far more at ease among the codes and hidden identities of her online world than she has ever been in the real one, but when other hackers start to go missing, she finds herself caught up in a web of secrets that could have repercussions far beyond both.

When anyone can be a name on a screen, how do you know who to trust?

Our Reviews (+ book club's opinions)

***We received the eBook free as a review copy from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review***

"It was very exciting and even though I wasn't into it at first, I felt myself needing to read more. I also liked how even though I am a boy, I still liked the genre of the book and I liked how she left the end of the chapters hanging. If I had to rate this book, I would rate it 11 out of 10 stars!" -Sam More, Book Club Member

I absolutely loved this book! It is an exciting and thrilling fast-paced book. 
This book revolves around the sixteen year old girl Mallory Park, also known as Echo Six on the hacker Forum. She lives with her troubled father and younger brother; she is the one who takes care of the family. Mallory has two lives pretty much, her risky hacker life, and her real life, where she has a phobia of being touched, goes to school and cares for her brother. Suddenly, some of the famous hackers start disappearing without a trace and Echo Six doesn't know who to trust anymore.
This was a really amazing book. It captivated me from the first page and is completely action-packed. I really liked how the plot worked itself out and how new problems arose every couple of pages. I thought that some of the plot twists were a bit predictable; however, this was still an amazing book which I thoroughly enjoyed reading. It didn't matter to me that I could kind of predict the plot twist, it was still as exciting to read as if I didn't know.
The characters were very three dimensional. Mallory was really well written, she had a complex personality and the reader feels sympathy for her because she has to take care of her very complicated and broken family all by herself. She went through so much pain and suffering in the past and yet she is still willing to do anything to protect her father and her brother. She is also a genius, she makes several very hard decisions which I couldn't make. My favourite character was Warden however, he was awesome. He was really sweet, nice and talks a lot which is a really cool mix. Warden was always there for Mallory even though he didn't know her, he always tried to comfort her which is really nice of him. I found it also kind of adorable when Warden starts rambling on when he is in danger or nervous because it is really heartfelt. Whatever he says is heartfelt in that case.
This book was amazing and I wanted to just keep on reading. The ending was well-written, it felt satisfying and yet I wanted to know what would happen next. I really loved the writing as well, because it was captivating and every single part of this book was interesting. Overall, I give this book 5 out of 5 stars!

I have no words to describe just how much I loved this book, I mean seriously, I need a sequel ASAP!!!!!
The plot of this book was so exhilarating and exciting that I didn't know what to think half the time. I never trusted a single character because half of the characters were on a screen so until the end you didn't know who they were! I started to think that everyone was one of the hackers which I think might of been the point of her never off seeing them and not being able to find out who they were, and if it wasn't well, then it was just a bonus. The action in this book was so well written as well, and it didn't have to be actual hand in hand combat, most of the best action in this book was done behind a screen. Who thought that reading about typing could be so exciting? Hey! That rhymed!
Mallory was such a well rounded realistic character that made some very good choices and some very bad ones. But in all fairness, anyone would of made the bad decision because there were hardly any red flags with any characters meaning that you didn't know who the bad guy was. She has a complicated family life which we didn't really get to understand in full detail until the end of the book, but what was amazing to me was how she always managed to keep it together. She always looked out for her family and put them before herself even in the hardest of time which was what made her very likable.
Warden was my favourite character by far. I loved the fact that when he got nervous he started to talk a lot, which was very relatable to me because that is exactly what I do as well. He wasn't the brightest person in the world but what he occasionally lacked for in skill (compared to Mallory) he made up for in enthusiasm. He also was the character that kept Mallory's two feet planted firmly on the ground which was useful in some situations.
All in all I give this book 5 out of 5 stars. I would give it six but that is not on the scale so five stars will just have to do. This will defiantly now be my favourite book for the time being. Laura Tisdall is defiantly the author to watch!

Wednesday 16 September 2015

Rain Reign by Ann M. Martin

Book Blurb (from Goodreads):
Rose Howard has Asperger’s syndrome, and an obsession with homonyms (even her name is a homonym). She gave her dog Rain a name with two homonyms (Reign, Rein), which, according to Rose’s rules of homonyms, is very special. Rain was a lost dog Rose’s father brought home. Rose and Rain are practically inseparable. And they are often home alone, as Rose’s father spends most evenings at a bar, and doesn’t have much patience for his special-needs daughter.

Just as a storm hits town, Rain goes missing. Rose’s father shouldn’t have let Rain out. Now Rose has to find her dog, even if it means leaving her routines and safe places to search. Rose will find Rain, but so will Rain’s original owners.

My Review
This is definitely a very interesting and unique book.  
Rain Reign is about a  girl called Rose with Asperger's syndrome. She lives with her dad and one day during a thunderstorm, he brought a stray dog back home. She named the dog Rain. Since then, Rain and Rose stick together all the time. However, Rose's dad let Rain out during another storm and she went missing. On the search for Rain, truths are unveiled. 
I definitely enjoyed reading this book. It had a unique protagonist and isn't typically a book I would read. I normally read fantasy books; however, this contemporary book captured my attention. I expected this book to also be kind of sad. I was right to some degree. There were some sad parts near the end, but it wasn't cry-your-eyes-out sad. Since this book was told out of Rose's perspective, she has an obsession with numbers, therefore there are numbers in every other sentence. There are a lot of facts to remember and found it kind of weird to have so many numbers in a sentence. 
Rose was a really sweet girl and a unique protagonist. The way how her brain is portrayed to process the world, is really interesting. She didn't understand the action of some people and seemed so innocent and mature at the same time. Rain was an adorable dog. I always imagined having a dog like Rain while reading. The other characters were also really well developed. 
Overall, the writing was also captivating and portrayed Rose's different thought process which I found very interesting. There were a lot of numbers, lists and facts which were a bit jarring in the writing. Allover, the story was enjoyable to read. Therefore, I give this book 4 out of 5 stars!

Tuesday 15 September 2015

Cover Reveal - Origin Exposed (Descended of Dragons #2) by Jen Crane

Publication Date: October 6, 2015
Genre: Fantasy, New Adult, Romance
Book Blurb:
A Dangerous Secret 
In fiery redhead Stella Stonewall’s new world magic and shape-shifters are everyday life. Scales, sorcery, shifters—no big. Stella has learned she’s not only descended of dragons, but of powerful skin changers. She struggles to keep this rare form a secret, even from her closest friends.

A Bitter Betrayal 

Stella turns to her mentor Rowan Gresham for help. The charming but enigmatic Gresham forms a plan to improve her troublesome public image. The problem? The plan revolves around betraying the only family she has left.

A Potential for Something Real

When Gresham’s motives come into question Stella must rely on the new friends she’s made at a college for magical shifters. The feral bunch helps set Stella’s inner beast free. As these friendships flourish, so does the magnetism she’s always felt toward fierce and noble Ewan Bristol. But it’s so strong it threatens to overwhelm her.

Can Stella afford to open her heart now, when her entire future’s at stake, or is it bolted shut for eternity?

Purchase Origin Exposed
B&N Nook

About the Author 
Though she grew up on a working cattle ranch, Jen Crane has been in love with fantasy and science fiction since seeing a bootleg tape of Quantum Leap in the 90’s.

She has a master’s degree, and solid work histories in government and non-profit administration. One day, though, she said, “Life's too real for nonfiction. I’m gonna write about love and magic.”

Jen is happily living out her dream in The South with her husband and three children, striking that  delicate balance between inspiration and frustration.

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Find Jen Crane online

Twitter: @JenCraneBooks
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Here is an excerpt:
Chapter 22
Loryn had recommended a place in town that hosted local musicians on Saturday nights. Ewan assured me he and Boone would be long gone by then, and we could have all the fun we could stand without fear of bumping into them.

It was clear an hour and a half into the night what Timbra’s intention wasobliteration. I couldn’t blame her, really. She’d been nursing a dreadful heartache. And I knew as well as anyone the driving desire to be rid of the oppression of loss and sadness.

The band was surprisingly good, and when they played an upbeat song Timbra yanked me up by the arm.

She threw her head back and her arms out wildly. “Let’s dance!” she said. I indulged her. I had nothing against fun, after all. Timbra’s lithe body swayed and rocked to the beat, assisted by some fairly potent margaritas. Without fail, the occasion of two girls dancing together served as some unspoken invitation for horny strangers to jump on back. I shook my head sharply and shooed them away. Timbra, though, was less forceful.

“Hey,” I warned a lanky guy whose hips seemed to move on hinges, “Were your parents octopi or something? Keep your hands to yourself!”

He smirked, mitigating any handsome that might have been found in his face. “She’s not complaining,” he said and popped Timbra soundly on the ass. “You’re the only one here with a problem.” He turned from me, dismissing me well before I was through.

“Listen, asshole,” I yelled to be heard above the music. “She’s had too much to realize what you’re up to. But I haven’t. You and her,” I flicked my finger back and forth between them, “not happening. She’s in love with someone else.”

“I’m not looking for love, darlin’, just a little lovin’.” He was behind Timbra, and banded one arm above her chest, the other at her hips, and pulled her tightly into his body. He stuck his head to her hair and breathed deeply before lowering his mouth to the back of her neck. He stared at me as he pressed his lewd lips to her, daring me to do something about it.

I was steaming mad. At him. At his audacity. And furious with Timbra for getting herself into the situation. I had just lifted my hand to snatch her from his grubby tentacles when I heard a growl from the door so low and menacing it made the hair on my arms stand up. The warning was audible even over the music, and every eye in the place shot to the door.

When I saw what stood at the bar’s entrance I gasped and involuntarily stepped away, though the beast was nowhere near me.

A vicious dog the size of a sofa stood nearly to the shoulders of the people at the bar. Even in the low light I could see that its golden hair was ruffled at the neck, a clear indicator of its intent to attack. Those closest to the beast scrambled away, clearing a better line of sight. Some crazy person approached the maddened dog, and I shook my head back and forth, silently willing the person not to go near it.

Surprise suffused my spine like I’d suffered an electric shock. The person approaching the beast was Ewan—which meant...the beast was Boone.

“Oh, hell,” I breathed. “Oh, no.”

The dog stalked toward us, his rumbled growls growing more ferocious with every pace. When Octoman finally realized he was the one in the dog’s sights, he threw his arms away from Timbra so dramatically it was almost comical. Almost. The palpable pull of imminent danger sucked any humor from the space.

Boone’s wide snarl revealed pointed teeth the size of small daggers. My every instinct told me to run. Instead, I grabbed Timbra by the bicep and threw her behind me. I’d never been around Boone’s animal form and he looked violent as hell. I feared Timbra might bear the brunt of his fury. He was intent on Octoman, though, and I breathed a little easier.

Mangled words escaped Boone’s slathering mouth. “Hands. Off. My. Woman.”

The dancing idiot had the nerve to smirk again. To taunt Boone. “She wasn’t complaining.”

Boone roared with fury, deafening those of us closest to him. It scared me. I admit it. I began backing away and took Timbra with me. Timbra, who at that point decided to clue in to her surroundings.

“Boone Adder,” she admonished. “Stop barking, for gods’ sake. This is none of your concern.”

His eyes widened with outrage before he uttered a nearly imperceptible, “You. Next.”

Ewan had positioned himself between Boone and Octoman. Not his most brilliant move, in my opinion.

“Let’s go, darlin’,” Octoman said before running his arm around Timbra’s shoulders.

I shook my head in disgust. I knew what came next. The guy was an obstinate fool. He might just deserve an ass whooping, I thought.

With a powerful thrust from his back legs, Boone launched himself toward the guy, managing to knock both Ewan and Timbra to the side.

Boone had Timbra’s suitor pinned for three seconds, snarling wetly in his face before Octoman changed—not into an octopus, as I’d imagined—but into some sort of half-crocodile, half-human combination. He used a thick armored tail to knock Boone off him, then bolted upright on stumpy legs.

His face, which had looked so natural in a snarl, elongated to house a fearsome row of jagged teeth. He snapped them with force, and the crowd erupted in a mass exodus from the bar. I looked to Ewan to see what we could do. Timbra still lay on the floor, watching in awe as the two predators circled each other. Searching for a weakness. Readying to attack. Ewan shook his head at me in a direct warning to steer clear. I was on board with that program. Getting between those two seemed a good way to lose a limb.