TRUEL1F3 by Jay Kristoff

TRUEL1F3 (LIFEL1K3 #3) by Jay Kristoff
Genre:
 Young Adult SciFi
TRUEL1F3 (Lifelike, #3)Publisher: Knopf Books For Young Readers
Publication Date: 
June 30th, 2020
Rating: 5 Stars

Synopsis:

Best friends have become enemies. Lovers have become strangers. And deciding whose side you’re on could be the difference between life and death. For Eve and Lemon, discovering the truth about themselves–and each other–was too much for their friendship to take. But with the country on the brink of a new world war–this time between the BioMaas swarm at CityHive and Daedalus’s army at Megopolis, loyalties will be pushed to the brink, unlikely alliances will form and with them, betrayals. But the threat doesn’t stop there, because the lifelikes are determined to access the program that will set every robot free, a task requiring both Eve and Ana, the girl she was created to replace. In the end, violent clashes and heartbreaking choices reveal the true heroes . . . and they may not be who you think they are. 


Disclaimer: First and foremost I would like to thank Jay Kristoff, Penguin Random House, and NetGalley for providing me an e-ARC in exchange for an honest review. This in no way sways my opinions, all thoughts expressed are my own.


REVIEW

TRUEL1F3 was one of my most anticipated reads of the year and it did not disappoint! After the heart stopping cliff hanger in DEV1AT3, I anxiously waited an entire year to feel closure and I truly felt we got it. There are some things I wish that were expanded on but it left it in a way that if he ever wanted to write more, there would be meat left for that to happen. As far as I know this is a trilogy only, though!

I loved the multiple points of view, I loved Lemon Fresh and her character ARC. Honestly when I started LIFEL1K3 I thought Eve would be the star but Lemon emerged from the scrap and stole my heart. I don’t want to say too much because I don’t want to spoil anything! Once the series is out and people have had time to read it, I will expand more  on my thoughts about this book and the characters. The love, the betrayals, the romance… I loved (and hated LOL) it all!

Just know that this book was an excellent conclusion to the series. It had action, adventure, so much laughter, heart warming moments… it does have a few triggering moments so if you are sensitive to some triggers please let me know and I can tell you so you can prepare. They aren’t graphic but it does add a layer of sensitivity to the issue.

Just like DEV1AT3 I have a hard time conceptualizing the time frame in which all of this takes place.. a matter of days.. a matter of weeks. It’s so hard for me to imagine Eve and her story ARC coming full circle in this time but again, it ramped up the intensity!

True Cert, this book was just what I needed to get out of my slump! I enjoyed seeing the direction the characters went! Jay Kristoff is a forever favorite author of mine.

Thank you so much for allowing me to read an advanced copy and for leaving this burning hole in my chest. This book goes on Sale 6/30/20 and is up for PREORDER now!

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Aurora Burning by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Aurora Burning (The Aurora Cycle #2) by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Publication Date: May 5th, 2020
Publisher:Knopf Books For Young Readers
ISBN: 9781524720926
Genre: 
YA SCIFI
Rating: 
5 Stars
Audio Rating: N/A

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DISCLAIMER:
This e-book was sent to me for free by Penguin Random House via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This in no way impacts my rating, all thoughts and opinions are my own.


[SYNOPSIS]
This synopsis contains spoilers for Aurora Rising, Book 1 in The Aurora Cycle

Our heroes are back… kind of. From the bestselling co-authors of the Illuminae Files comes the second book in the epic series about a squad of misfits, losers, and discipline cases who just might be the galaxy’s best hope for survival.

First, the bad news: an ancient evil—you know, your standard consume-all-life-in-the-galaxy deal—is about to be unleashed. The good news? Squad 312 is standing by to save the day. They’ve just got to take care of a few small distractions first.

Like the clan of gremps who’d like to rearrange their favorite faces. And the cadre of illegit GIA agents with creepy flowers where their eyes used to be, who’ll stop at nothing to get their hands on Auri. Then there’s Kal’s long-lost sister, who’s not exactly happy to see her baby brother, and has a Syldrathi army at her back. With half the known galaxy on their tails, Squad 312 has never felt so wanted.

When they learn the Hadfield has been found, it’s time to come out of hiding. Two centuries ago, the colony ship vanished, leaving Auri as its sole survivor. Now, its black box might be what saves them. But time is short, and if Auri can’t learn to master her powers as a Trigger, the squad and all their admirers are going to be deader than the Great Ultrasaur of Abraaxis IV.

Shocking revelations, bank heists, mysterious gifts, inappropriately tight bodysuits, and an epic firefight will determine the fate of the Aurora Legion’s most unforgettable heroes—and maybe the rest of the galaxy as well.


NON SPOILERY REVIEW

“I’m the girl who’s going to save the damn galaxy…”

Where do I even begin? It’s so hard for me to review this book without leaving spoilers so I’m going to have to keep this pretty simple. This book will make you laugh, cry, it will emotionally break you… and I can’t thank Jay and Amie enough. To be able to feel all of these emotions and to connect to characters so deeply — characters who stay with you once the book is long over, that’s truly an amazing reading experience. I haven’t stopped thinking about Squad 312 since I finished the book and I am already itching to re-read it because I’m not ready to let them go.

This book was truly explosive, action packed from beginning to end. There were so many times were I actually laughed out loud and times were I had real tears streaking my face. This book is more mature than Aurora Rising, but due to the nature of their circumstance it makes sense. All of the characters grew in their own way and I loved seeing their personalities shine. I loved the twists and turns — I just couldn’t get enough.

“I am not feeling nothing.”

Thank you so much for allowing me to read an advanced copy and for leaving this burning hole in my chest. This book goes on Sale 5/5/20 and is up for PREORDER now!

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Soulwalkers by Cassidy Thomas

Soulwalkers by Cassidy Thomas
Publisher: Little Big Books
Publication Date: December 3rd, 2019
Genre: YA Urban Fantasy
Rating: 4 Stars

Synopsis:

Kia LaStrauss can see into your soul with the touch of her hand. She can see your fears, desires, wants. She can see your past. Your present. Your future. She is a Soulwalker. 

New Orleans is the city Kia calls home: a city of revelry, jazz, wonder, and magic. She grew up listening to stories of magic and mysticism, but they were just stories… or so she thought. After experiencing two visions of the future, Kia learns of the existence of Soulwalkers, and that she is one of them. With the help of her mentor Ian, she begins to learn what she is capable of, and the consequences of her newfound power. But even Ian cannot prepare her for what she will discover. 

Kia is thrown into a world once unimaginable, where the touch of a hand could kill her and every new discovery can change the course of her life forever. 


DISCLAIMER:
Thank you Cassidy Thomas for this free finished copy to read and review. This is no way shapes my opinions, all thoughts expressed are my own.


REVIEW

I really enjoyed this YA urban fantasy! I love stories that center in New Orleans because the world-building is always so rich. Within this world, we have Soulwalkers, people who can see your soul with a touch… however, there is a balance to this magic system. This adds a level of stress to this ability, throwing me for a loop when you learn about Kia’s first walk. This book explores more magic than soul walking but I don’t want to say too much and spoil the surprises! This book has many twists and turns, some totally unexpected! This is a super quick, exciting read and I would recommend this to anyone who likes books you can devour in a sitting!

I liked the multiple points of view as I’m always wondering what everyone is thinking other than the MC. It just gives a book more depth to me.

***could be considered spoilery***

I enjoyed the romance aspect as I’m a total romance sucker. The only thing I think can be worked upon is the term of endearment. Ian would call Kia kid when they had a “mentor/student,” relationship but once it was more it seemed a bit demeaning. Calling the person you’re interested in as “kid,” isn’t for me, but honestly I think it could just be my own opinion! Other than that, I was totally rooting for the characters!

This book is available for preorder on Amazon and will be available 12/3!

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Thirsty Thursday – Fireborne by Rosaria Munda

Wow wow wow, where in the heck did Thursday go? Let’s talk about an upcoming release that I am lucky to be a part of! Fireborne by Rosaria Munda!

Fireborne is a debut trilogy published by Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers! I am so excited for this as this is supposed to be like Game of Thrones x Red Rising! SIGN ME UP! I am so excited to have the chance to read this book early as it releases on October 15th, 2019! I plan on binging it all weekend long! You can pre-order HERE or from most online book sellers!


Synopsis:

Game of Thrones meets Red Rising in a debut young adult fantasy that’s full of rivalry, romance… and dragons.

Annie and Lee were just children when a brutal revolution changed their world, giving everyone—even the lowborn—a chance to test into the governing class of dragonriders. Now they are both rising stars in the new regime, despite backgrounds that couldn’t be more different. Annie’s lowborn family was executed by dragonfire, while Lee’s aristocratic family was murdered by revolutionaries. Growing up in the same orphanage forged their friendship, and seven years of training have made them rivals for the top position in the dragonriding fleet.

But everything changes when survivors from the old regime surface, bent on reclaiming the city. With war on the horizon and his relationship with Annie changing fast, Lee must choose to kill the only family he has left or to betray everything he’s come to believe in. And Annie must decide whether to protect the boy she loves . . . or step up to be the champion her city needs.

From debut author Rosaria Munda comes a gripping adventure that calls into question which matters most: the family you were born into, or the one you’ve chosen.


Will you be reading Fireborne when it releases? I cannot wait to see the reviews!

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The Girl the Sea Gave Back by Adrienne Young

The Girl the Sea Gave Back by Adrienne Young
Genre:
 Young Adult Fantasy

Publisher: Wednesday Books/St. Martin’s Press
Publication Date: 
September 3, 2019
Rating: 3 Stars ⭐️

Synopsis:

For as long as she can remember, Tova has lived among the Svell, the people who found her washed ashore as a child and use her for her gift as a Truthtongue. Her own home and clan are long-faded memories, but the sacred symbols and staves inked over every inch of her skin mark her as one who can cast the rune stones and see into the future. She has found a fragile place among those who fear her, but when two clans to the east bury their age-old blood feud and join together as one, her world is dangerously close to collapse.

For the first time in generations, the leaders of the Svell are divided. Should they maintain peace or go to war with the allied clans to protect their newfound power? And when their chieftain looks to Tova to cast the stones, she sets into motion a series of events that will not only change the landscape of the mainland forever but will give her something she believed she could never have again―a home.

**REVIEW**
Disclaimer: First and foremost I would like to thank Adrienne Young, Wednesday Books/St. Martin’s Press, and NetGalley for providing me an e-ARC in exchange for an honest review. This in no way sways my opinions, all thoughts expressed are my own.

Regardless of my review, I believe that we should gives books that interest us a chance! Reviews are important but not every book is for every person and we need to keep that in mind when we decide what books we want to read!

I went into this book with the understanding that this book is not Sky in the Deep, however because it is in the same world, I had a hard time separating that expectation from my thoughts. I cannot fault this book for not being Sky. To me, this book has way less Viking action and hardly any romance but that’s okay because it is a story of its own!

There were many parts of this YA fantasy that I enjoyed. I really loved the idea of how relying on fate can rule the way a group of people live. I love the expansion of the different clans, their ways of life, and how they view the world. I liked the idea of multiple points of view to get the story from a different angle. The fighting scenes were intense, had me on the edge of my seat, reading as fast as I could!

With that being said, I had a hard time connecting to the characters and the story, I would have an even harder time connecting if I hadn’t read Sky. Adrienne Young sets up a very unique world in the first but I felt like it wasn’t expanded much in this novel. The voices felt flat, even the POVs read the same in tone and structure. I felt lost, not knowing where I was in the story/world, and kept having to reread passages to figure out who was talking and where I was. Sometimes I would be reading a chapter and forget who’s point of view it was.

I felt that there wasn’t much of a buildup to the climax. There was a lot of telling and not showing, which packed less of an emotional punch. I felt somewhat lost on the characters motivates, and confused as to why they were doing what they were doing. I didn’t understand why they were at war, which is actually part of the issue I had with Sky. The plots seemed similar and had the same issues with pacing.

Overall, I feel like this book is very bingeable; while it had it’s issues, I still get myself compelled to keep reading it and to find out the fate of the people in this story. I think that there’s a lot that can be expanded on and more to explore! I would recommend this book to anyone who loves Viking lore, action, and for people who read and enjoyed Sky in the Deep but keep in mind that they are different stories!

You can pre-order this book at Amazon, or search any retailer online or book store closest to you! Available September 3, 2019!


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e-mail: crdavis347@gmail.com

Sea of Bones by Deborah O’Donoghue

Title: Sea of Bones

Author: Deborah O’Donoghue

Publisher: Legends Press

Pages: 288


Disclaimer: I received this advanced copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. It in no way influences my rating.

Review:

In Deborah O’Donaghue’s debut novel we explore a psychologist thriller with many social and political themes tied in. This is a fast paced book that will keep you on your toes. I enjoyed the third person narrative as it helped keep track of all of the characters introduced. Some characters I felt were unnecessary and only distracted from the plot, but overall I enjoyed it. I really liked how mental health was portrayed, however some of the themes of the book were slightly disturbing and could be triggering for some. I would read this book knowing that before you go into it. Solid 3.5 star rating for this quick thriller!


You can purchase your copy of this book on Amazon on July 1st, 2019!

DEV1AT3 by Jay Kristoff

DEV1AT3 (LIFEL1K3 #2) by Jay Kristoff
Genre:
 Young Adult SciFi
40177770Publisher: Knopf Books For Young Readers
Publication Date: 
June 25th, 2019
Rating: 5 Stars

Synopsis:After the climactic battle in Babel, she finds herself separated from Ezekiel and Cricket in the wastelands. Lemon’s abilities to manipulate electricity mark her as a deviate, and deadly corporate operatives are hunting her to use as a weapon in the war between BioMaas Incorporated and Daedelus Technologies. Instead, Lemon finds herself falling in with a group of fellow deviates—a band of teenagers with astonishing abilities, led by an enigmatic figure known as the Major, who may hold the secrets to Lemon’s past.

Meanwhile, Cricket finds himself in possession of the puritanical Brotherhood, a religious cult set for a head-on collision with the Major and his band. Searching for Lemon, Ezekiel finds a strange ally in an old enemy, and uncovers a plot that may see him reunited with his beloved Ana.

And inside Babel, a remade Eve hatches a plan to bring an end to the world.


**REVIEW**
Disclaimer: First and foremost I would like to thank Jay Kristoff, Random House Childrens, and NetGalley for providing me an e-ARC in exchange for an honest review. This in no way sways my opinions, all thoughts expressed are my own.

THIS BOOK IS ACTION PACKED!

It’s really hard not to say anything spoilery as this is a second installment and I don’t want to ruin anything in the first book! I really enjoyed LIFEL1K3, so when I was offered the chance to read DEV1AT3, I jumped at the opportunity! This book was filled with everything that I love; action, a little romance, scifi elements, and so much banter! It reminded me of the game Borderlands. The post apocalyptic feel, the advanced technology with weapons/AI, and just the overall survival of the population was exciting to read! We get multiple points of view during this book, which helps expand on the world building as we follow each character to new places. I love that Kristoff chose to write this series as a YA because teenage conversations can be so hilarious! Especially in regards to their inner thoughts and feelings! The majority of the book focuses on Lemon, introducing us to some of the most interesting and cool characters!

The only real critique I have is that the timeline feels SO short! I can’t imagining everything happening to these characters within such a short time span but then again, that ramps up the intensity!

Overall, this book was amazing and FUN! I enjoyed seeing the direction the characters went. This second installment did not disappoint! Jay Kristoff is a master at twists and turns and leaving us going WTF at the end! I am devastated and cannot wait for #3!

You can pre-order pre-order this book at Amazon, or search any retailer online or book store closest to you! Available June 25th, 2019!

~Rachael
IG: @rqdavis_

 

Tell Me How You Really Feel -Aminah Mae Safi

Tell Me How You Really Feel by Aminah Mae Safi
Genre:
YA Contemporary/LGBT+
41150474Publisher: Feiwel Friends
Publication Date: 
June 11th, 2019
Rating: 5 stars

Synopsis: Sana Khan is a cheerleader and a straight A student. She’s the classic (somewhat obnoxious) overachiever determined to win. Rachel Recht is a wannabe director who’s obsesssed with movies and ready to make her own masterpiece. As she’s casting her senior film project, she knows she’s found the perfect lead – Sana. There’s only one problem. Rachel hates Sana. Rachel was the first girl Sana ever asked out, but Rachel thought it was a cruel prank and has detested Sana ever since. 

Told in alternative viewpoints and inspired by classic romantic comedies, this engaging and edgy YA novel follows two strongwilled young women falling for each other despite themselves.


**REVIEW**
Disclaimer: First and foremost I would like to thank Aminah Mae Safi and Feiwel Friends for providing me an ARC in exchange for an honest review. This in no way sways my opinions, all thoughts expressed are my own.

THIS. BOOK. OMG.

I would like to start this review by stating that I do not read contemporary. Like, ever. It just isn’t my thing. What is my thing you ask? Queer, diverse woman as main characters! When my friend asked me if I wanted to join this book tour, I absolutely had to. I started the book and finished the book the next day because I could not put it down. The story is endearing, it’s funny, it’s everything I love in a ROMCOM. When I was reading this book, I felt like I was watching it inside my head!

Sana is this perfect cheerleader who never seems to do wrong and Rachel is this outcast who just wants to be successful… and they HATE each other, or so they think! Neither of them realize the other’s motivations when they are suddenly forced to work together on Rachel’s last film project in order to secure funding towards college. I had ideas about what the characters were like inside my head when I started but was so surprised to see their true personalities shine!

This book is YA and you can tell firstly by the setting and secondly in the way the characters handle conflict. However, It didn’t bother me when Sana would argue with her mom, or when Rachel lashed out because that’s what teens do! It felt realistic and similar to things I went through in high school!

Things that worked for me (could be considered slightly spoilery):

  • Queer, diverse women as the MCs. It did not feel like the author was just trying to tick boxes. It felt organic and natural!
  • The usage of appropriate language for each household.
  • The descriptions of food. Oh my gosh. There were times where I was googling what some of the food was because I wanted to make it!
  • The banter! It’s not often where I actually laugh out loud during a book!
  • This book playing out in my head like a movie!

Things that didn’t work for me (could be considered slightly spoilery):

  • The ending! Only because I WANTED MORE! I never wanted it to end! I truly hope we get some sort of second book or novella! I want to know what Sana does with her internship and I want to know how successful Rachel is at directing! GIVE ME MORE AMINAH! Hah!

Overall, I LOVED this book! If you like contemporary, pick this up, if you don’t like contemporary but you want to read about queer romance with diversity, pick this up, if you want to read something light after a heavy read, pick this up!!

You can pre-order your copy from her favorite local retailer The Ripped Bodice and get it personalized and signed by her! You can also pre-order this book at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or search for it online closest to you! Available June 11th!

~Rachael
IG: @rqdavis_

 

My First Big Time ARC!

I received an e-mail yesterday from Penguin Random House stating that I had been approved for an ARC I had requested. I have never requested an ARC from a publisher, especially not one this big – I typically use NetGalley and read those “insta-approve” books because I am just a wee-account on all platforms. To my surprise, I was approved for an e-ARC of AURORA RISING by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff!

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ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

I looked at my phone, I looked around the room, I looked back at my phone, and I just sat silently… I was in shock! Never in a million years did I think that I could get an ARC of something of this magnitude! I am forever thankful for the people at Penguin Random House for selecting me and trusting me with this new space adventure! I will have this read and reviewed soon!! I’m already at 20%!

**Synopsis**

From the New York Times and internationally bestselling authors of the Illuminae Files comes a new science fiction epic . . .

The year is 2380, and the graduating cadets of Aurora Academy are being assigned their first missions. Star pupil Tyler Jones is ready to recruit the squad of his dreams, but his own boneheaded heroism sees him stuck with the dregs nobody else in the academy would touch . . .

A cocky diplomat with a black belt in sarcasm
A sociopath scientist with a fondness for shooting her bunkmates
A smart-ass tech whiz with the galaxy’s biggest chip on his shoulder
An alien warrior with anger-management issues
A tomboy pilot who’s totally not into him, in case you were wondering

And Ty’s squad isn’t even his biggest problem–that’d be Aurora Jie-Lin O’Malley, the girl he’s just rescued from interdimensional space. Trapped in cryo-sleep for two centuries, Auri is a girl out of time and out of her depth. But she could be the catalyst that starts a war millions of years in the making, and Tyler’s squad of losers, discipline cases, and misfits might just be the last hope for the entire galaxy.

NOBODY PANIC.

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Pre-order your copy from Amazon, Book Depository, Barnes and Noble, Books-A-Million, Target, or other retail sites!