Sundown Rundown

 

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Good twilight, my favorite book nerds! I hope you’ve had a good March!

The snow has finally let up. St. Patrick’s Day was very green and very lucky. Well, not super lucky, but it wasn’t a bad day. Easter is coming up soon. Hope everyone has a lovely holiday and that it is very sunny. May the Easter Bunny bless you with peeps!

peeps

Unless, you hate peeps, then I hope you are blessed with chocolate eggs. ME? I’m a BIIIIIG fan of the sour watermelon peeps. Sooooo I’m hoping for those.

Also, A Series of Unfortunate Events Season 2 premiered yesterday! WHO ELSE IS EXCITED ABOUT THAT AND ALREADY BINGED IT ALL NIGHT!?

*hand shoots up in the air.*

ASOUE

I’m not giving any spoilers away, but this is the Easter Egg hunt of the year! Definitely go watch. Such a great series, inspired by fantastic books. (I need to reread them). Treachery. Tragedy. And tr–another tr-word.

And just remember….the world is quiet here. #VFD

Anywho…

So, it’s evening. You’ve had a long day and want to kick back. Here, I have a rundown of everything I’ve read this month. If there’s a review you’ve missed you’ll find it here. Maybe you’ll find the next book you want to read.

Here we go:

 

There's Someone Inside Your House

There’s Someone Inside Your Househere

Author: Stephanie Perkins

Blood, Gore, all in a small town. YESSSSSSS!!!!! And it was EPIC. This book is intense and really makes a person wonder. Anybody could go psycho and it could be in any small town. Even yours. A good read if you want some goosies with a side of sweet high school love.

 

Reborn

 

Shadow Falls: Rebornhere

Author: C.C. Hunter

Bring on the vampires…and private school. I never thought those two things would ever combine together, but here they are in one series. There are vampires, fae, shapeshifters and chameleons. All kinds of drama for the heart that craves angst. Resident badass with fangs, Della will certainly keep you rolling as she’s determined to solve a murder that happened on the grounds of Shadow Falls.

 

Crime and Punishment

Crime and Punishment here

Author: Fyodor Dostoyevsky

There’s crime. There’s punishment. There’s a man slowly driving himself in-freaking-sane. Guilt will eat you up and here’s a six part story to show just how much it’ll haunt you.

 

Love and Gelato

Love + Gelatohere

Author: Jennifer Evans Welsh

Discovery, first loves, and most importantly, gelato. Go to Italy for the art and adventure. Stay for the love and gelato. Snd let me tell you, I LOVED this book. It was so sweet and tender. Definitely on my reread list.

 

Wicked Game - SR

Wicked Gamehere

Author: Jeri Smith-Ready

Wild. Sexy. Annnnnd, vampires. These ones don’t sparkle. They’re feisty and love blood. They run a radio station to keep with the times. Ciara works as a marketing rep to keep them in business. And of course, she can’t help but be attracted to one of them. Fun and wicked, this was a fun read.

 

Bad to the Bone

Bad to the Bonehere

Author: Jeri Smith-Ready

More bloody fun. A cult. A vampire dog. Sure, let’s get more interesting. Ciara faces new and old problems, including taking the next step with her vamper boy-toy. This book will whip you around just the way you like it. It’s okay to have a little fun sometimes. Read a pointless book.

 

Wind in the Willows

The Wind in the Willowshere

Author: Kenneth Grahame

Whimsical and just beautiful. This book is one everyone should read. It’s short and filled with adventure and a troublesome toad that has an addiction to driving motor cars. Iff you love Winnie the Pooh then read this.

 

Bound to You

Bound to You – here

Author: Christopher Pike

A two for one deal here. Two stories in one book. Spellbound and See You Later are two stories that will envelope you in magic, love and certain danger. One thing I gathered from this book, you never really know a person.

 

Light of Ives

The Light of Ives: Memories Remain – here

Author: Kristen Traganas

Imaginative and intriguing. This aches for freedom away from home. With heartache and tragedy there is healing. There’s a lot of emotions rolling in this fantasy YA.

 

It was a full month. Some classics. A couple YA romances. Mass market fun.

My favorite book this month: There’s Someone Inside Your House.

I’m such a fan of horror…if it’s done right. And this was done SOOOO right. I’m a fan of Wes Craven’s Scream series (the movies not the TV, though the show is decent). Slashers can make you not only jumpy, but also wary. Such an eerie feeling to have, and invigorating. , leaving you on the edge of your seat. I loved it! Now, I have my mom reading it.

My least favorite book this month: Bound to You

I just couldn’t get into this book for life of me. The plot were very interesting, but it was how jumpy it felt. There was no magic or wonder in it. Everything felt so planned out and expected, leaving me deflated. Never fun.

 

So, March is over and April is coming up next. A LOT more books to come and I believe V.C. Andrews is among them.

 

More to come soon…

-K.

 

Find me:

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Thoughts? Tell me in the comments below.

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We’ll Always Have Our Memories (The Light of Ives: Memories Remain – A Book Review)

The Light of Ives: Memories Remain
Author: Kristin Trangas
Published: 2017

On Goodreads

Light of Ives

My Rating: Full boltFull boltHalf bolt

 

Life on Emerald Lake isn’t exciting for Lucy. More than anything, she wants to leave and explore the world outside of it. As an Isleyn, she must learn how to have full control her abilities before she can do that. That means being in tune with another person’s emotions, be able to read them and help them feel at peace.

Then suddenly she’s given and internship in the outside world and she could be more excited. Maribel Springs is quaint and cute, but then Lucy spots trouble. An Indomite named Fax. The Indomites are believed to be responsible for so much suffering, but Lucy can’t help having feeling for this one.

This could mess up her internship and whatever chance she has to prove herself to her parents.

 

I couldn’t get behind this book completely. There. I said it.

 

The story was great! I really liked the Isleyns and Indomites. These two cultures were incredibly unique and a whirlwind of intrigue. They’re both so different and have wonderful abilities. They’re so imaginative.

Magical

The story was one of healing and learning and I loved that! The romance that developed between Lucy and Fax seemed so secondary and that was cool. Romance have to be up front. There were so many elements that blended together really wonderfully.

However, the problems I had with connecting to this story was that I got confused at parts. Bits of information about these characters felt as if they came out of nowhere and were completely random. I couldn’t handle Lucy’s random outburst of anger either. It was 1 to 100 REAL quick, and over situations that were eye roll and lip snarling worthy. It threw me off with how overdramatic these parts could be.

I’m a big fan of showing. If you’ve been with me for a while you know that that’s a big thing for me when reading a book. It’s hard to get into a book when it’s bulk is the author explaining everything to you. That’s how it felt. This book was more of a telling than a showing. I don’t get that great of a smooth visual when I’m being told everything. It was bulky and too much at times. Give me the details while the story is happening! Let me SEE it. I would’ve loved it so much more that way.

 

This book is really sweet and I love the kind of books where characters are just searching for freedom. It really inspires people to do the same. And to see Lucy find more than she expected was so enlightening. However, I was held back from finding true love with this book. There was just too much that threw me off regarding structure. So, this wasn’t a book for me. Sometimes that happens. I’ve noticed that plenty of people really enjoyed it and I tried, but just didn’t quite get there.

 

Quotables:

“In reality, it didn’t make a difference whether she had the highest grades or the lowest. Despite having always been complimented for her ability to read emotions with such clarity and perception in class, if she was unable to use her gifts here, her academic performance would be meaningless.” (Lucy, p. 147)

“She wanted to follow her emotions for once without guilt or doubt.” (Lucy, p. 388)

“If only he could be burned into her mind forever…” (Lucy, p. 1027)

 

More to come soon…

-K.

 

P.S. Song today? Mr. Jones by Counting Crows.

 

Find me:

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Thoughts? Tell me in the comments below.

Shamanism and Undying Love (Bound to You – A Book Review)

Bound to You
Author: Christopher Pike
Published: 2012

On Goodreads

Bound to You

My Rating: Full boltFull bolt

 

In this book comes two stories of magical suspense.

Spellbound

Cindy is getting used to being Jason’s new girlfriend after his previous one was found horribly mutilated up in the mountains just weeks ago. She’s sure that he wasn’t involved, but there’s something off about him. She can’t put her finger on it. When another classmate is found dead in a similar way, she and foreign exchange student, Bala, are determined to figure out what is happening. When they discover what horrific thing could do something so grizzly, they wish they hadn’t.

See You Later

Mark is in love with Becky. Becky has a boyfriend that isn’t Mark. Kara is determined to get Mark and Becky together. Very determined. But why? This drives Mark to not give up on how he feels for Becky. How far will he go for the girl he loves?

 

Before I get started with this review I’d like to say I’m sorry for my lateness. Work has been really taking over. Also, one of my sisters have swung by for Spring Break. I do have a couple books up for review, so yay!

 

How to begin…Just get it out there. This book was not for me. Nope. Not even a little.

The setting was beautiful and so was the story plot. That goes for both stories. They seemed so great at first and I was really intrigued. I didn’t get past that feeling. There were just parts that didn’t make sense to me. Some parts were extremely abrupt, coming out of nowhere, jarring me and others that made no sense at all.

However, there were some really great moments, much like a shooting star. Brief, but amazing and beautiful. I just wish it had been continuous.

Spellbound: About shamanism and crazy animal spirit

See You Later: Time Travel

Out of the two, See You Later was my favorite. It was sweet and I liked the direction it was going. But that was about it. It was very meh. However, the twists in each of these books was pretty good. They weren’t the kind that made your eyeballs bulge from their sockets. They were smirk worthy because they sly plot twists. I dug’em.

Shrug II

What I couldn’t really handle was the way the story was being told. It felt very bland and I just couldn’t get interested. In some instances, what went on felt incredibly ridiculous to me and unrealistic, like it didn’t happen naturally. Because of that I couldn’t believe this book which led me to be unable to be sucked into it.

The characters didn’t even keep me interested. In fact, they made me annoyed. They were very bland without any really development. Completely one track. I get that these stories stack between middle school and high school, but still. I just felt like what was important wasn’t being focused on and vice versa. There just wasn’t any real feeling there. You know what I mean. I wasn’t moved by them. I like being swayed like branches in a breeze.

 

 

I can’t say that these did very much in the way of entertaining me. That could be different for other people. Many readers on Goodreads really enjoyed them, but I’m not one of them sadly. It just wasn’t for me. I needed more.

 

Quotables:

“Seven weeks ago today, on August 2nd, seventeen-year-old Karen Holly died. The circumstance surrounding her death as reported by Jason Whitfield, her boyfriend at the time, are as follows…” (Spellbound, p. 6)

“My tribe is sunk in superstition. I have rebelled against it my entire life.” (Spellbound, Bala to Cindy, p. 44)

“You should be the hunter, not the hunted.” (Spellbound, Joni to Alex, p. 67)

“On my eight birthday, I asked my grandfather how big the world was. When you are small, he said, it is huge. But when you are a master of nature, it is like a ball you can hold in your hand.” (Spellbound, Bala to Cindy, p. 248)

“I’m such a liar. I lie to myself constantly. The truth is I didn’t know what I wanted beck then, But when I saw her, I began to get an inkling.” (See You Later, Mark, p. 257)

“It seemed the most important decisions I made were the ones where I decided to do nothing.” (See You Later, Mark, p. 320)

 

More to come soon…

-K.

 

P.S. Song today? Undefeated by Daughtry.

 

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Thoughts? Tell me in the comments below.

First Loves in Firenze (Love + Gelato – A Book Review)

Love + Gelato
Author: Jennifer Evans Welch
Published: 2016

On Goodreads

Love and Gelato

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull boltFull boltFull bolt

4/25

 

I made the wrong choice.

Carolina “Lina” Emerson is staying in Italy this summer with her father who she just met for the first time. It leaves her distracted from the wonder and magic of Italy. How did she not know about him until just recently?

While settling into her new home at an American cemetery for WWII soldiers, she tries to understand why her mother sent her here, but more than anything she just wants to go home. Then she meets charming Ren, her neighbor behind the cemetery.

After being given a journal, her mother’s, Lina and Ren begin an adventure to visit all of the places her mom did, experience art, find a secret bakery, all hoping to recreate the best summer of her other’s life as well as understand why she had Lina come here. However, Lina didn’t expect to be shell shocked by its contents that change her life forever and the residual emotions of loss. With Ren, she figures out some things she’s not sure she wanted to know. And as she tours Tuscany, she finds that people come from all around for the art and gelato. Sometimes they find so much more.

Lina, think. You’re alone in a foreign country, a certifiable giant has just stepped forward as your father, and your home could be the setting for a zombie apocalypse movie. Do something.

 

This book marks 4 out of 25 authors, from my New Year’s resolution, that I’ve never read from before. This isn’t my typical book since I’m really into the Paranormal genre, but I couldn’t help myself because I love Italy.

 

This book was so sweet and beautiful so so pure. This book began on such a sorrow filled note, but I really loved that it turned into something more, something that could spring a new beginning with opportunities for newness and renewal. Handling the grief of losing a loved one is hard. You’re losing a part of your being, but this isn’t the focus. Lina is given the chance to understand and walk in her mother’s footsteps and keep a part of her close while discovering new things about herself.

Italia. Firenze. I spent Spring Break in Florence during my Senior year in college and I loved every second of it. From The Duomo to the Boboli Gardens to the Ponte Vecchio and SO MUCH MORE. It was all so splendidly placed throughout the story, really creating Florence and the rest of Tuscany. The shared history of the places wasn’t forced at all either. And the bright and lively color from the city to the sunsets to the food and the people of the country truly brought it to life. It was like I was back in Florence all over again and my heart just swelled with longing.

DuomoIMG_0241

Lina isn’t some rebellious teenager. She’s just a girl who’s hurting, confused and feeling really lost. Ren helps her find her way, which is great because it can be scary being in new place you don’t want to be with no friends. He’s goofy, kind, and adorable that you can’t help but fall in love with him. He introduces her to new possibilities and of course, gelato. And let me tell you, you’ve never had gelato if you’ve never been to Italy. There is a difference between what you find at the supermarket versus what you get at a gelateria. It’s the air and the place and the feeling that surrounds you.

Lina’s adventures with Ren isn’t all that I got to experience during the book. There were also her mother’s adventures from her journal too. The journal entries were sprinkled throughout as Lina adjusted to her new life. Each one pulled me in deeper and deeper and I was completely captured, just like Lina, with how wild and spontaneous the woman was. I really loved getting this peeking at her mother’s life. We always wonder if we’ll follow in our parents’ footsteps and doing so by this journal felt good. Felt right.

Italian Hillside

There were many parts that I teared up at. There are discoveries that will pull at your heartstrings. I didn’t non-stop cry here, but I was feeling pretty shaky by the end. Family triumphs and first love finds always do that to me! Both are so special because they hold such a dear spot in your heart. So, no tears. But A LOT of heart pounding.

Every once in a while, I love reading a book like this. It’s special. There’s a purity and proof that there’s light in life. There are no major plot twists or major danger on the horizon. It’s just growing up and first loves and wonderful innocence.

Do I recommend this book? Si!

 

Quotables:

“From here on out there will only be before and after today.” (Lina, p. 2)

“My life was about to change. Again. What happened to normal, boring days?” (Lina, p. 272)

“The ring. The denial. The lie.” (Lina, p. 312)

“A life without love is like a year without summer.” (Howard to Lina, p. 376)

 

Below are a few other photos from my trip back in 2015. Such a beautiful country.  A week in Florence was too short.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

More to come soon…

-K.

P.S. Song today? Run Away with Me by Carly Rae Jepson

 

Find me:

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Thoughts? Tell me in the comment section below.

Supernatural Hands On Learning (Shadow Falls: Reborn – A Book Review)

Reborn (Shadow Falls: After Dark #1)
Author: C.C. Hunter
Published: 2014

On Goodreads

Reborn

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull bolt

Vampires, chameleons, and witches, oh my! With a side of ghosts.

Della Tsang. Spunky. Flighty. And, a badass vampire.  At Shadow Falls, a private school for the supernaturally impaired, she learns how to control her powers. Though you’re not really impaired if you have kick-ass powers, are you? Didn’t think so.

Della and newcomer, Chase, come across two dead bodies in Shadow Falls. Della’s determined to find out who and what killed these innocent people and she’ll break all the rules to do it. This isn’t the only problem on Della’s plate however. Her cousin Chan is missing, her Dad has a twin that he’s never talked about, and her romantic life has taken a downward nosedive. With everything stressing her out, she’s also being haunted.

Della struggles to achieve her dreams and find some normalcy, but it just isn’t happening. In her gut, something dreadful is on the horizon and her life is on the line.

Della Tsang is spunky and driven and FULL of sass. I mean to the brim, bookworms. She is all work and barely any play as she works to solve several mysteries that are circling around her. She’s not alone. With her two best friends, two camp counselors, and an on-again-off-again shapeshifter with a deep, sexy southern drawl, Della is going to find out what is going on with all of the crazy in Shadow Falls. That’s not to say she won’t stir up a little trouble of her own along the way, of course.

Reborn

One of the elements of the book that really drew my attention was the the Supernaturals. Supernatural rules go out the window here. The traditional rules we all know and live by like the three laws of physics are tossed out the window. For example:

  • Vampires can go out in the sunlight.
  • Vampires have a heartbeat.
  • Vampires can fly (which, okay, is one of the oldest tricks that an original vampire can do, but it was strange to see).

These are only a couple of the different traits that caught me off guard, and this is only with vampires. Vampirism is considered a virus in this world and is called V1. There are shapeshifters, chameleons, fae, and so many more races of supernatural in the book. It’s really different than what I know and that’s not a bad thing. It’s just tricky to understand and treat like it’s common knowledge. Kudos to Hunter for being incredibly unique and diverse!  She did phenomenal with being sure to detail each supernatural’s powers.

Reborn

Hunter did an amazing job in juggling multiple plots, too. There’s more than one thing happening for Della in this book, so the focus splits up quite a bit, but it’s so well done. Never once was I confused when one issue transitioned to a completely different one. Each time it was smooth and done with ease, like nacho cheese.

Just like there were so many different things happening from a haunting to solving the death of two humans, there were several characters involved. Kylie (chameleon) and Miranda (witch) are Della’s best friends and then there’s Steve, the hot shapeshifter and Chase the new vamp on campus. I may have mentioned this a little already. There are many others. I haven’t seen this many characters in a book in a long time. Della’s surrounded by so much family and people that care about her. Granted, she’s pigheaded, stubborn, and feisty as all hell, but she’s caring, loving, and determined to get her dreams to come true. Very similar to Damon Salvator of The Vampire Diaries if I’m being honest. I can relate to these qualities a tad. It’s why I got such a good laugh throughout the story. Some of her worries were so ordinary and relatable. I will say this on a side-note, Della had times when she acted like a petulant little child and I wanted to smack her silly for it.

Reborn

Shadow Falls was beautiful. Very misty and green and lush. The grounds of the school were very open. This private school isn’t set up like normal ones. Students get their own cabins. The cafeteria is separate from the main school building, or so I guess. The main school building is its own operation. Everything is so very open. I really liked it. It gives a sense of freedom to these students.

There were times that certain topics were drilled into the ground to the point of no return. Not good. There is a limit to how much a topic should get drilled in. It was run over and over to the point of aggravation for me. Della would go word for word with her arguments and thoughts as if it was the only thing she could think up, which sucks. She seems pretty smart. And, the word, chauvinist, is her favorite word. I figure it out pretty quick when she said it about ten different times….

I skimmed over such strong and repetitive parts because they were the same nearly every time.  Not one bit was reflective or even changed up.

More so, I wasn’t very surprised very much by the events that unfolded. The build-up was great, but they fell flat because of how much they were drawn out. I was just left with a feeling of meh.

Would I recommend this? It’s not a terrible book. It’s fun and fast paced. Della is a quick-witted girl and strong to handle everything that gets thrown her way. However, this wasn’t very memorable. It’s book 1 in a series and I don’t know if I want to read the other ones.

Quotables:

“I don’t fit in here. But I didn’t fit in at home, either.” (Jenny to Della, p. 71)

You have to counter the bad with the good. If not, you’ll get lost in the evilness of it all. It can darken your soul and you’ll lose all joy in life.” (Holiday to Della, p. 102)

“Boobs, smiles, and ghosts…” (Della, p. 110)

More to come soon…

-K.

P.S. Song today? Miss Independent by Kelly Clarkson

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Thoughts? Tell me in the comment section below.

I’m Going to Kill Whoever Moved My Stuff (There’s Someone Inside Your House – A Book Review)

There’s Somebody Inside Your House
Author: Stephanie Perkins
Published: 2017

On Goodreads

There's Someone Inside Your House

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull boltFull boltFull bolt

Everywhere. They were everywhere. Those who had left them and those who had been left behind.

A year has passed since Makani Young has moved to Osbourne, Nebraska, a sleepy, corn filled town. Truly boring unless you hang out at Sonic. Still, her past—the reason for moving here to live with her grandma—still haunts her, though she’s got a group of great friends, and maybe-possibly-not really, she has Ollie, the boy she likes that might like her, but she’s still figuring that out.

Makani is shaken after a classmate is found, grisly murdered. The school buzzes with suspects, rumors, and theories about who could’ve killed them. Then suddenly, more murders follow, just as gruesome and disturbing as the last. Terror seizes the small town as the killer continues to elude the police. The town becomes restless and students wonder who’ll be next, but Makani may already know…

Secrets are abound! Makani Young is terrified, like every other student at her school, as her classmates are coming up dead and it’s nasty. In a small town it’s even more terrifying because everybody knows everybody, which means one thing. She knows the killer. Everyone does. But, who is it? That puts everybody on edge even more. People are dropping dead and she’s wondering if it’s because these victims had something to hide. If it’s true, does the killer know what she’s hiding? What she can’t even share with her close friends? The reason why her parents barely talk to her, and why they sent her to live with her grandmother?

So many questions!

(And, nope. I can’t tell you the big secret(s). I try not to be spoilery.)

Perkins brought back the horror slasher with one fell swoop aka this book and I was absolutely thrilled. Thrilled is an understatement. My brain squeaked and then that squeak left my lips as a squeal. I’m a major fan of Scream, I Know What You Did LastSummer, Psycho, and many others I could list off. I’m a fan of the slasher genre. It’s its own special brand of horror. In some cases, it encapsulates gore and in others it’s about the body count.

That being said, slashers ≠ mystery. It’s true! With a mystery, it’s all about finding out who killed people after all is said and done already. With the slasher, the killing is still happening and your characters are worried that they may be next on the chopping block. The fog of fear is still hanging over all of the characters as they try to survive the murderous rampage as they work to discover who the killer is. And maybe it’s just me, but discovering the killer in a slasher is much more shocking.

There's Someone Inside Your House

Moving on! Makani Young was such an interesting character. While she was holding onto a part of her old life albeit and terrible part, she wasn’t dramatic or overstated. She leads a rather ordinary life with the exception of Oliver-Ollie-Larsson. I really liked that because it made the story so much more realistic. That, and how small and boring and corn-fed Osbourne, Nebraska is. The town represents so many towns across America! They’re small, sleepy, some don’t even do that well. They’re just crap-town, America. I live in one of these right now. The realism of both the characters and the town the story was set in was fantastic.

There's someone Inside Your House

Just as there was so much darkness in this book, I mean it is a horror, but there was also a lot of humor. So many references and well-put jokes really lightened the story at the right times. It was so natural. So was the awkwardness of trying to figure out feelings. Makani does a lot of that and it’s completely typical. She doesn’t spend the whole book pining for Ollie. Everything gets settles pretty quickly, but she does try to navigate this new territory. I really liked that it wasn’t the main point of attraction.

Speaking of, this serial killer is whack! Loco. PSYCHOTIC. I can’t say it enough. I was totally creeped out! BUT! I really liked how Perkins jumped POVs. Done from third person, there were multiple characters that were followed. I got to see how this killer worked and what he did. Also got to be there for the victims’ last moments which really got my heart pounding.

There's Someone Inside Your House

Do I recommend this book? Heck, yes I do! I even got myself a signed copy (extra squee).

There's Someone Inside Your House

It was intense, dark, funny, and splendidly realistic. The writing was incredible. Perkins really did great with each individual character and captured just enough gore. That tense feeling when you hold your breath and your chest tightens is so different than when your waiting for your favorite characters to finally kiss. The surprises here are eye-popping and deadly.

Quotables

“Girls often had secrets.” (Makani, p. 13)

“Hello, paranoia, my old friend.” (Makani, p. 39)

“A real dead body looked different from the ones on television or in the movies. There was nothing artful about it. Nothing positioned. Haley’s body looked lifeless—but not like life had been taken away from it. Like it had never had life.” (Makani, p. 103)

“Overnight, every student had become a potential target.” (Makani, p. 127)

More to come soon…

-K.

P.S. Song today? Shine by Collective Soul.

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True Lies and the End is Nigh So Hold On Tight (The Dark Calling – A Book Review)

The Dark Calling (The Arcana Chronicles #5)
Author: Kresley Cole
Published: 2018

Dark Calling

My Rating: Full boltFull boltFull boltFull boltFull bolt

We watch. We endure. We prepare for the future. One day this game will end, and we’ll be ready.

Evie Greene is still reeling from news that will change her life and the lives of everyone she knows. It could even change the entire game, but she doesn’t quite believe it. And nobody believes her when she comes forth about it. Something is wrong. Really wrong. Somebody she trusts is lying to her.

With doubt crawling into her head, Evie makes a break out into the Ash because it’s no longer safe in the castle. With unlikely allies, she searches for anything that could help her find answers to many of her questions, including whether or not Jack really did survive Richter’s quake.

With a strange power falling over the Arcana, Evie may have to invoke the red witch to save those she holds dear. Her next move in this deadly game could give her what she needs to defeat Richter or…end her life.

In a world teetering on the edge…With enemies at every turn…Darkness beckons.

Reviews to the books previous to this one in the series are listed below.

Poison Princess

Poison Princesshere

Endless Knight

Endless Knighthere

Dead of Winter - SR

Dead of Winterhere

Day Zero

Day Zerohere

Arcana Rising

Arcana Risinghere

Congratulations to the first book ever to drive me to drink.  Well, not alcoholic status, but I did need a few drinks after this. The farther this series goes, the more I get wrecked. And baby, this installation to the Arcana Chronicles wrecked the living hell out of me. As my best friend said, “Isn’t that a good thing?”

Dark Calling

The great and dangerous game of Arcana has shifted. Evie Greene’s life is in even more peril as she learns of a great change in herself and in others, including Aric. With her life in danger, she flees, desperate and alone until she runs into unexpected acquaintances. With Joules, The Tower, and Kentarch, The Chariot, they move fast to figure out what has come over their allies and enemies and what’s turned their cards upside down.

On the verge of death out in the Ash, they run into old friends and new enemies. The Hanged Man finally comes into play and he’s not holding back. Taking many of Evie’s friends under his power, they must find a way to free them while also worrying about when Richter, The Emperor, may attack next. But, Evie’s powers are on the fritz and she may have to turn to her alter-ego, the red witch, in order to stay alive. She’s still confused about whether the one person who can pull her back from that dark abyss is alive or not.

The Dark Calling may take them all…

These characters have come so far and grown a great deal. I couldn’t be more proud of Evie. Sure, she’s still got that girly touch where she isn’t the greatest or most powerful fighter, but when she unleashes her powers she is the most deadly thing in the room, hell, on the planet. She is not somebody to trifle with. The bomb that was dropped in her lap at the end of the last book, Arcana Rising, really amps of the stress level for everyone, especially me. The young woman is a champ.

Aric’s past feelings really came back to haunt him and Evie. I have a big feeling that bothered many people, but I’m not one of those people. I figured he had lingering doubts and issues with his and Evie’s past lives and it’s why I’m not a major fan of their relationship. I can see what she sees in him, though, so I understand why she can’t fully toss him away. It’s the history. It’s always the history.

And Jack…fate has it out for this one. I couldn’t have been more excited about his return. He’s still the hothead I know and love, but he’s not the same guy he was in the very beginning when he first met Evie. He doesn’t fly off the handle as he once did. Only on those that threaten him and his. He’s more focused on the big picture: Evie and how much he cares about her.

While still incredibly young, these characters have been incredibly strong and have struggled through so much that they’ve each been on the brink of death more than once, and Cole is having me feel way too much about them.

Many reunions happened during this book and I was beyond ecstatic. So much giggling and happiness that I couldn’t contain myself. Everyone has been so scattered over the last two books and it’s had me a bit torn up.

The plot twists twisted my guts up into all kinds of interesting shapes. If you recall, I mentioned I might’ve been wrecked because of this book. The plot twists would be one of those big reasons why. I read this book from sunup to sundown on one of my only days off last week. I could not put this book down. It was amazing and heart-pounding. I’m still picking my guts off of the floor.

I’m still very convinced that Jack has a major part to play before all is said and done. He was brought into this from the very beginning for a reason. And while I am theorizing (and geeking out) here, a part of me thinks he’s part Arcana. Like, he’s been accidentally created. While human, he’s been brought into this game of life and death chess. Many Arcana have fallen, but he’s somehow still standing. I’ve got such a fuzzy feeling about him. I’m still working on my theory.

Dark Calling

The book moves fast, though over the span of weeks, just like the books previous. And you still follow through the POVs of Evie, Aric (Death), and Jack (The Hunter). The new POV that I got a new glimpse through was The Hanged Man. The man is a total creep and downright vain.

Dark Calling

The imagery always gets me. Activating my senses and putting them on high alert. The use of onomatopoeias really pulls you in closer. Cole also uses short and to the point sentences to show how quick the action scenes move, adding to the intensity of the story. It’s one of my favorite things! And the setting is all new! Evie and her gang of misfits (which they really are) travel out to the ocean, or what’s left of it anyway, and discover Jubilee; a settlement where the last remaining waters of the ocean is, and where ships have collided and capsized. This community isn’t the godsend that it seems to be. People are being offed on the plank and plunged into the dark, cold depths of the water. But, with no place else to go, Evie has to take her chances here to regroup. This place really reminded me of exploring the Titanic under water because that’s how this place works. You scavenge and get paid for it. It’s dangerous and there are always people that don’t make it back. There’s also a strange magic hanging over the place that is dangerous, so Evie and the other Arcana have to be careful with their powers.

Dark Calling

I highly recommend this series. I really do. The action, paranormal angle, romance, angst and that feeling of always being unsure which day will be your last is all encompassed in it. Cole really kept it all original here. I’ve never read anything like this. I’m enthralled and probably on an unhealthy level. So many of my heartstrings have been broken, but also mended…and then broken again. I can’t get enough. I know that when this series comes to its end I will be a complete mess. I’ve never been so in love with a series like this.

Quotables:

“Go. Out into the wastelands.” (p. 11)

“Remember: Your mind has dominion over your body.” (Kentarch to Evie, p. 113)

“My hope lied to me, whispering in my ear, ‘Believe these men, and you will reunite with your wife.’ Tell me, Empress, do you trust the whisper of your hope?” (Kentarch to Evie, p. 115)

“Noble cuts like a blade to the heart.” (Jack to Evie, p. 138)

“Now, where were we? Oh, yeah, I was telling you how every Emperor gets an Empress. Which means you ass is mine.” (Richter to Evie, p. 156)

“My mother once told me that diamonds were born of pressure, but I never understood what she meant until I met you.” (Evie to Jack, p. 180)

More to comes soon…

P.S. Song today? Into Dust by Mazzy Star.

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