Posted in Young Adult

Goodreads Mondays #13 (10/31/2016)

Happy Halloween!! I can’t believe that this year is almost over! What is everyone dressing up as tonight? My husband and I are going to be passing out candy as Jessica Jones and Luke Cage, mainly because it’ll be very easy for us to come up with a costume out of our closets. And because my husband isn’t a very big fan of costumes to begin with, so whatever he wears I’ll just say he is Luke Cage! 😉

Goodreads Monday is a meme hosted by Page Turner,  and the idea is to post a book that’s on your TBR pile and show it off. This is a great way to show off books I have not yet managed to read!

This week I have chosen:


Title: The Young Elites

Author: Marie Lu

Published: October 7th 2014 by G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers

Goodreads Summary:

I am tired of being used, hurt, and cast aside.

Adelina Amouteru is a survivor of the blood fever. A decade ago, the deadly illness swept through her nation. Most of the infected perished, while many of the children who survived were left with strange markings. Adelina’s black hair turned silver, her lashes went pale, and now she has only a jagged scar where her left eye once was. Her cruel father believes she is a malfetto, an abomination, ruining their family’s good name and standing in the way of their fortune. But some of the fever’s survivors are rumored to possess more than just scars—they are believed to have mysterious and powerful gifts, and though their identities remain secret, they have come to be called the Young Elites.

Teren Santoro works for the king. As Leader of the Inquisition Axis, it is his job to seek out the Young Elites, to destroy them before they destroy the nation. He believes the Young Elites to be dangerous and vengeful, but it’s Teren who may possess the darkest secret of all.

Enzo Valenciano is a member of the Dagger Society. This secret sect of Young Elites seeks out others like them before the Inquisition Axis can. But when the Daggers find Adelina, they discover someone with powers like they’ve never seen.

Adelina wants to believe Enzo is on her side, and that Teren is the true enemy. But the lives of these three will collide in unexpected ways, as each fights a very different and personal battle. But of one thing they are all certain: Adelina has abilities that shouldn’t belong in this world. A vengeful blackness in her heart. And a desire to destroy all who dare to cross her.

It is my turn to use. My turn to hurt.

The third book just came out, and I have heard so much hype on this series. I am on the waiting list for this book from my library. I can’t wait to see what the hype is about and dive into a new series!

What is on your TBR shelf this week?

Posted in Young Adult

Steel and Stone Books 1 and 2 Review

Chase the Dark by Annette Mariechasethedark

Steel and Stone Book #1

Published: October 12th 2014 by Annette Marie

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:

Piper Griffiths wants one thing in life: To become a Consul, a keeper of the peace between humans and daemons. There are three obstacles in her way.

The first is Lyre. Incubus. Hotter than hell and with a wicked streak to match. His greatest mission in life is to get Piper into bed and otherwise annoy the crap out of her. The second is Ash. Draconian. Powerful. Dangerous. He knows too much and reveals nothing. Also, disturbingly attractive — and scary. Did she mention scary?

The third is the Sahar Stone. Top secret magical weapon of mass destruction. Previously hidden in her Consulate until thieves broke in, went on a murder spree, and disappeared with the weapon.

And they left Piper to take the fall for their crimes.

Now she’s on the run, her dreams of becoming a Consul shattered and every daemon in the city gunning to kill her. She’s dead on her own, but there’s no one she can trust — no one except two entirely untrustworthy daemons … See problems one and two.

I received this book as an arc from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I read this back in April before I really started to blog, so I didn’t write a formal review like I would normally. Because of this book though, I started to read the rest of the series, and I can’t get enough of it! Piper, Ash, and Lyre get into so many scrapes that it’s amazing only 4 days in the book have passed before it’s over. This book has everything; supernatural beings, mystery, action, and a tiny bit of romance that could be expanded on in the rest of the series.

Bind the Soul by Annette Mariebindthesoul

Steel and Stone Book #2

Published: January 9th 2015 by Annette Marie

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:

The most important rule for an Apprentice Consul is simple: Don’t get involved with daemons. Well, Piper is planning to break that rule — big time.

After a near-deadly scandal with the Sahar Stone, she has the chance to return to the only life she’s ever wanted. All she has to do to keep her Apprenticeship is forget about Ash and Lyre. Ash might be enigmatic and notoriously lethal, and Lyre might be as sinfully irresistible as he is irritating, but they’re not bad for a couple of daemons.

There’s just one problem: Ash is missing.

Really, she shouldn’t risk her future for him. He lied. He betrayed her. But he also saved her life, damn it. Wherever he is, he’s in trouble, and if she doesn’t save his sorry butt, who will? But with every dangerous secret she unravels, each one darker than the last, she slips deeper into Ash’s world — a world with no escape for either of them.

It has been a few months since I have read the first book, but Marie does a good job of briefly explaining the first book so that you aren’t confused or lost. This book takes place 5 weeks after the first book ended, and Ash is missing. So Piper goes on a mission with Lyre to help find him. With that being said the pacing in this book is very quick. Piper gets herself into some very tense situations, and you wonder how she is going to make it out alive. The mood for a portion of the book gets very dark and intense, more so than in the first book.

We are introduced to new characters in this book, and Samael makes the perfect villain. Although, to be fair, in this series anytime you are dealing with a daemon they could be friend or foe at any given time. We also get to know the mysterious Ash a tiny bit more. He is probably one of the main reasons I really like this series thus far. I wonder how Ash will handle his PTSD after being tortured for 5 weeks.

I think I enjoyed this book a little bit more than the first one! This had all the elements that I love in a book series, and I can’t wait to pick up the third book!


Posted in Young Adult

Autumn Book Tag

Hey guys! So I was tagged by Lauren @Lauren’s Page Turners and, like her, I really should complete this tag before the end of Autumn! So, Without Further Ado…

Apple Picking – A book on your TBR that looks so great, you can’t wait to get into it!



I bought this at the beginning of the month, and I heard really good reviews on it. I can’t wait to be able to read this!

Corn Maze – A book to get lost in




I am currently on the third book in this series, and I cannot put it down! I love the characters and the setting, it’s hard not to get lost in the story once you start a book!

Haunted Houses – A book that Scared you

the dead house


Lauren had this as her Haunted Houses pick, and I decided to keep it for this category. This book is dark and scary and I couldn’t read it without having at least two lights on and my three dogs on the bed with me!

Pumpkin Patch – The latest book you picked up/purchased




I just finished the second book, and I had to get the third one from Kindle Unlimited!

Scenic Drives – a book that is lyrically beautiful




The writing in this book was very lovely, I just wished I enjoyed it more!

Pumpkin Carving – A book you didn’t like and wouldn’t mind cutting up

18374994 (1)


I really really disliked this book. There was so many over used tropes and cliches!

Drinking Apple Cider – A sweet book to curl up with


This book was super cute! I don’t read contemporaries that much so this was a nice break from my usual genre.

Jumping in a Leaf Pile – A book that reminds you of your childhood

Harry Potter


This is the book that practically defined my childhood! The series first released while I was in elementary and the last book came out when I was in high school!

Scary Movie Night – Your favourite spooky read



This was probably one of the most recent novellas that I have read that is really spooky. It was full of plot twists for such a short amount of pages that it had me on edge for the entire thing!

Costume Party – A book with an eclectic cast of characters



This book has such a great mix of characters! I will always love Kaz and his team!



Anyone who wants to do this tag is welcome! Just let me know if you do in the comments so that I can see your answers!!

Posted in Young Adult

The Demon in the Wood Review

The Demon in the Wood by Leigh Bardugothedemoninthewood

Grisha Series # 0.1

Published: August 18th 2015 by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:

Before he ruled Ravka, before he was the Darkling, he was just a lonely boy with an extraordinary gift. In this prequel story to the New York Times-bestselling Grisha Trilogy, Leigh Bardugo takes us into Ravka’s mysterious past, when Grisha lived as fugitives and the Darkling took his first steps on the path to power. Discover new territory in the Grishaverse, as well as two chapters from the soon-to-be-released Six of Crows.

These were the trees he liked best, the kind that never lost their green, that always smelled of sap. In woods like these, it felt like summer was still alive, as if a sun were buried in every rough trunk like a warm, dormant heart.

This could have easily been an actual prequel to the whole Grisha series instead of a novella! The Darkling deserves an entire book for himself, or maybe even a spinoff! This made me feel so much for the young boy who would soon become the Darkling.

This novella doesn’t spoil anything for the Grisha trilogy, and it makes me want to go reread the series all over again! I have always been sympathetic to his character in the series, and this further emphasized that feeling. Just like all of Bardugo’s short stories set in this universe, there is a twist that I didn’t see coming. I should have based upon what the Grisha was facing during this time, but it just further emphasized the lengths that people will go for power.

If you are a fan of the series, I would definitely suggest you check out this very short story on the Darkling. You won’t be disappointed, except perhaps only by the length of the novella.

Posted in Subscription Box

Lit-Cube Special Edition “Halloween Eve” Box Review

Lit-Cube is a monthly subscription box that sends you a book, a wearable, and other little bookish goodies.

The cost: $29.99/month + $4.99 s/h to U.S. and $14.99 s/h to Canada

<–This is what it looks like on the inside of the special edition box, after you first open it! The anticipation is exciting. The theme for this box was “Halloween Eve”.

Check out my other Lit-Cube reviews and book box subscription reviews!


For a limited edition box (such as this one) it is a little bit more costly. The cost is $44.95 which included shipping and handling. These are one time boxes and are not part of the monthly subscription, I believe they only do 4 boxes a year, but I could be mistaken. This was my second limited edition box, and so far I really like it! I might consider buying more in the future, but that will depend on funds during that particular month!

Unlike my first limited edition box, this one included a description card. I really like when subscription boxes include these, I like to get a sense of what each item is valued.


The book for this box is Teen Frankenstein by Chandler Baker. This was published January 12th 2016 by Feiwel & Friends.

Goodreads Summary:

High school meets classic horror in this groundbreaking new series.

It was a dark and stormy night when Tor Frankenstein accidentally hit someone with her car. And killed him. But all is not lost–Tor, being the scientific genius she is, brings him back to life…

Thus begins a twisty, turn-y take on a familiar tale, set in the town of Hollow Pines, Texas, where high school is truly horrifying.

This book retails at $17.99, but on Amazon it is $12.59.

This book was picked to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the penning of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein when she was just 18 years old. Shelley later published it anonymously in 1818, and in 1823 published an edition with her name on it.

I have never heard of this book before, but it is very fitting for a Halloween box! I will definitely make sure I read this one before Monday!

Exclusive Hocus Pocus pajama set – RV $44.95.

I was super excited for this item when I saw it in the packaging. At first I thought it was just a shirt, but it turned out to be something even better!!! (P.S. Sorry for the horrible photo of me wearing the pjs, my husband is not a great photographer and he cut off my head.) These were super soft and I was a little worried that the shorts would be a little too big, but they fit perfectly. My only problem is that I live in south Texas, and the high today was 88 degrees F! Definitely not long sleeve weather. =/


Frankenstein Tea Sampler by First Edition Tea Co. -RV $3.99, you can purchase other literary themed teas on their Etsy shop, a sampler bag costs $2.50 in their shop. Maybe this will become available sometime in the future!

This was made exclusively for Lit-Cube. I almost wished I was a tea drinker so that I could try this out! I love pumpkin anything and this looks like it would taste amazing! Maybe I will give this to my good friend who loves tea so that he can tell me the verdict!


National Geographic Is It Real? Vampires -RV $19.99, Amazon has this for $4.99.

I am pretty sure that I have seen this on TV randomly, but I don’t think I really need this on DVD. This is probably the least liked item that we received. I wonder if it is on Netflix.


Halloween Socks- RV $9.99

How adorable are these socks?? I love socks and these will be a great edition! Great for keeping feet, while not necessarily warm, covered. They can also be used to confuse your big black dog into thinking your foot is your small dog while they are playing.


Hocus Pocus magnetic bookmark set by NerdyGrlDesigns, RV $3.25. These particular bookmarks can be bought as a set (which the full set is 5 characters) for $9.15.  They can be bought individually for $3.15, or as a set of 3 for $5.50 in the choose your own characters section. I love Melissa’s shop, and have actually purchased from her before. I actually have my eye on a few more bookmarks that I hope I can convince someone to buy me for Christmas. =D


Annie B’s Popcorn & Caramels– RV $2.95

You either received caramel, sea salt caramel, or jalepeno cheddar, each individual bag is $2.00. I am very excited to try these out as I am a huge popcorn fan! The individual caramel candies come in 13 different flavors. You can purchase a bag of 10 for $5.00 or 120 pieces for $60.00, or a few different options. I imagine that Lit-Cube probably bought in bulk, which would make each candy worth $0.50.

Overall this box has a value of $83.52, not bad for a subscription box. This is probably my favorite box I have received from Lit-Cube this year! Not just because the theme is Halloween, but I love almost all of the goodies picked out! I hope I enjoy the book as much as I enjoy the goodies!

What do you think of this boxes curation? What boxes do you subscribe to that had a Halloween theme this month?

Posted in Young Adult

Waiting on Wednesday # 12 (10/26/2016)

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by  Jill from Breaking The Spine that shows the upcoming books that many of us are anticipating! This week, I’m waiting for…

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them the Original Screenplay

Author: J.K. Rowling

Expected Publication: November 19th 2016

Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group

Goodreads Summary:

J.K. Rowling’s screenwriting debut is captured in this exciting hardcover edition of the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them screenplay.

When Magizoologist Newt Scamander arrives in New York, he intends his stay to be just a brief stopover. However, when his magical case is misplaced and some of Newt’s fantastic beasts escape, it spells trouble for everyone…

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them marks the screenwriting debut of J.K. Rowling, author of the beloved and internationally bestselling Harry Potter books. Featuring a cast of remarkable characters, this is epic, adventure-packed storytelling at its very best.

Whether an existing fan or new to the wizarding world, this is a perfect addition to any reader’s bookshelf.

How can I not want something by J.K. Rowling? I am a huge fan of the Harry Potter franchise, and am super excited for this movie to come out!

Anyone else excited for this screenplay to come out? Will you read it before or after the movie?

Posted in Young Adult

Mechanica Book Review

Mechanica by Betsy Cornwell (Book #1)mechanica

Published: August 25th 2015 by Clarion Books

Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:

Nicolette’s awful stepsisters call her “Mechanica” to demean her, but the nickname fits: she learned to be an inventor at her mother’s knee. Her mom is gone now, though, and the Steps have turned her into a servant in her own home.

But on her sixteenth birthday, Nicolette discovers a secret workshop in the cellar and begins to dare to imagine a new life for herself. Could the mysterious books and tools hidden there—and the mechanical menagerie, led by a tiny metal horse named Jules—be the key to escaping her dreary existence? With a technological exposition and royal ball on the horizon, the timing might just be perfect for Nicolette to earn her freedom at last.

Gorgeous prose and themes of social justice and family shine in this richly imagined Cinderella retelling about an indomitable inventor who finds her prince . . . but realizes she doesn’t want a fairy tale happy ending after all.

“A whole life could change, and change again, in the smallest fraction of forever.”

I have seen this book compared to Cinder by Marissa Meyer on multiple reviews. However, I just don’t see it. They are both Cinderella retellings, and they both deal with mechanics either by fixing items or building.  But that about sums up the comparison. If I had to choose which book I enjoyed more, I would pick Cinder in a heart beat.

Mechanica did have a few great themes throughout the story. For one, it had a great strong female lead. Nicolette isn’t your typical Cinderella, she’s an inventor and a silent Fae sympathizer. She uses small magic that have been banned for a few years to help her do her chores, and she fixes any of the machines that breaks down. This book also has a strong friendship theme with a hint of feminism. Nick meets Fin and Caro her first day at the market to sell her wares so that she could become one step closer to leaving her house and step family. Majority of the book is then spent on how Caro and Nick’s friendship grow to where they feel like family and it includes a little romance subplot between Nick and Fin. Thankfully it wasn’t an insta-love type of situation.

I never expected much of anything to happen, and nothing much did. I was in a constant state of waiting for things to begin.

The quote above is basically how I felt the entire novel. We go through how Nicolette became Nick, her live as a servant for her family, brief mentions of Fae throughout, and then the ball at the end. Just your basic retelling, in the same order of events as the original. This book was super slow and as you can tell very predictable. There was hardly any conflicts and only a handful of scenes with the steps.

Spoiler Below:

The only other aspect that I really liked about this book was that Nick stayed true to herself, and turned down the prince (this is where the hint of feminism comes into play). Nick knew that he didn’t love her and she was just in love with the idea of him. So instead of having the happily ever after ending, Nick chooses to continue to find a benefactor for her inventions. Although there was a moment when I thought she was going to say yes to his marriage proposal, and if that happened I was going to stop reading right then and there.

“I had rescued myself entirely.” 

For a predictable book, this one was okay. This book really lacked a controversy for Nick to overcome. I mean, yes she overcomes her step family, but I felt like it needed more than that to make it stand out. The Fae are mentioned throughout, but it’s not very flushed out. I guess Cromwell is waiting for the second book to go into more detail on that aspect. So if you are one to really enjoy fairy tale retellings then you’ll more or less enjoy this one. Just don’t compare it to Cinder or other books before reading. *Side note- I really love the cover*


Posted in Young Adult

Goodreads Mondays #12 (10/24/2016)

Goodreads Monday is a meme hosted by Page Turner,  and the idea is to post a book that’s on your TBR pile and show it off. This is a great way to show off books I have not yet managed to read!

This week I have chosen:



Title: The Architect of Song

Author: A.G. Howard

Published: August 15th 2016 by Golden Orb Press

Goodreads Summary:

A lady imprisoned by deafness, an architect imprisoned by his past, and a ghost imprisoned within the petals of a flower – intertwine in this love story that transcends life and death.

For most of her life, nineteen-year-old Juliet Emerline has subsisted – isolated by deafness – making hats in the solitude of her home. Now, she’s at risk to lose her sanctuary to Lord Nicolas Thornton, a twenty-seven-year-old mysterious and eccentric architect with designs on her humble estate. When she secretly witnesses him raging beside a grave, Juliet investigates, finding the name “Hawk” on the headstone and an unusual flower at the base. The moment Juliet touches the petals, a young English nobleman appears in ghostly form, singing a song only her deaf ears can hear. The ghost remembers nothing of his identity or death, other than the one name that haunts his afterlife: Thornton.

To avenge her ghostly companion and save her estate, Juliet pushes aside her fear of society and travels to Lord Thornton’s secluded holiday resort, posing as a hat maker in one of his boutiques. There, she finds herself questioning who to trust: the architect of flesh and bones who can relate to her through romantic gestures, heartfelt notes, and sensual touches … or the specter who serenades her with beautiful songs and ardent words, touching her mind and soul like no other man ever can. As sinister truths behind Lord Thornton’s interest in her estate and his tie to Hawk come to light, Juliet is lured into a web of secrets. But it’s too late for escape, and the tragic love taking seed in her heart will alter her silent world forever.

International and NYT bestselling author, A.G. Howard, brings her darkly magical and visual/visceral storytelling to Victorian England. The Architect of Song is the first installment in her lush and romantic Haunted Hearts Legacy series, a four book gothic saga following the generations of one family as – haunted by both literal and figurative ghosts – they search for self-acceptance, love, and happiness.

New Adult: Recommended for ages 16+

This has been on my TBR shelf for almost a month now, and I still haven’t read it! I found out today that next month the author will be only an hour away from where I live at a book festival! I believe it’s the universe telling me that I need to read her book so that I can go meet her next month!

What is on your TBR shelf this week?

Posted in Young Adult

The Love That Split the World Review

The Love That Split the World by Emily Henrythelovethatsplittheworld

Published: January 26th 2016 by Razorbill

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:

Natalie Cleary must risk her future and leap blindly into a vast unknown for the chance to build a new world with the boy she loves.

Natalie’s last summer in her small Kentucky hometown is off to a magical start… until she starts seeing the “wrong things.” They’re just momentary glimpses at first—her front door is red instead of its usual green, there’s a pre-school where the garden store should be. But then her whole town disappears for hours, fading away into rolling hills and grazing buffalo, and Nat knows something isn’t right.

That’s when she gets a visit from the kind but mysterious apparition she calls “Grandmother,” who tells her: “You have three months to save him.” The next night, under the stadium lights of the high school football field, she meets a beautiful boy named Beau, and it’s as if time just stops and nothing exists. Nothing, except Natalie and Beau.

Emily Henry’s stunning debut novel is Friday Night Lights meets The Time Traveler’s Wife, and perfectly captures those bittersweet months after high school, when we dream not only of the future, but of all the roads and paths we’ve left untaken.

“Love is giving the world away, and being loved is having the whole world to give.”

I don’t know if I can write a review of this book and do it any justice. I liked it, but then there was elements that I just didn’t like at all. I thought based upon the title that it was going to be a contemporary novel with maybe a little bit of fantasy woven in. For the most part I was correct, only there was a lot more sci-fi  and a whole lot of romance involved.

“No matter how hard it feels, you don’t need to be afraid to move on, and you don’t need to be afraid to stay either. There’s always more to see and feel.”

I’ll start first with the elements I did not like about this book. First, there was a lot of info dumping. The characters would go on very long tirades about a concept and then you’re left feeling “what did I just read?” At some points it was a struggle to continue reading, I would have to put it down and pick it up later after some motivation.

Second, there was insta-love. Cringe. I liked Natalie and Beau together, but I just wish that they had at least some sort of build up into a relationship. For the contemporary romance side, this was a huge let down. Especially since this made up of at least 85% of the book.

Third, there was just so many elements to the story and I don’t think Henry was able to incorporate all of them very well. There was your romance, time travel, world jumping, therapy sessions, boy drama, identity crisis, and well you get the picture. With all these elements coming into play, there was no character development. So when it is all said and done, you don’t really feel anything for Natalie and Beau by the end of their story. Oh and Henry tried to make this book a little LGBT friendly by inserting that her research scientist/therapist is a lesbian during one of the many tirades. I am all for different types of relationships, but it should at least be thought out a bit more rather than thrown into a random conversation.

Lastly, this book was a little boring. It started off great, and then it went to snoozeville quite fast.  Halfway through I wasn’t sure if I wanted to continue or not, but I was already invested so I had to finish! The last 10% of the book was very quick, Natalie was running out of time , and it felt as if the book was running out of pages to get the information down. I’ve read some reviews that don’t like the ending, but I actually liked the ambiguity of it.

“And because she jumped, our world began”

I know it seems as if I don’t like anything about the book, but I do, I swear!

This book has a very diverse set of characters, and I love it! The main character is Native American, who was adopted into a Caucasian family. Natalie feels that since she doesn’t look like her family, that something is missing in her life. I found this very relatable, since I am from a mix household. I never felt like I didn’t belong, but there was hardly any other half Asians in my little town of one stop light (now they have about 5 and maybe more diversity, who knows).

Natalie is also a feminist, which you don’t see very much in YA novels. Well she was very feminist in the beginning of the novel, but I felt she kind of lost it somewhere around the middle. But I like that Henry made a very strong, independent, and smart main character.

The writing in this novel was fantastic. Henry knows how to use her words and make everything sound wonderful (even if I was a little bored). What I enjoyed most was the Native American myths and legends that were told throughout the whole novel. I am not an expert on Native American stories, but the stories were told very respectfully and seemed as if it was the only aspect that helped advance the plot.

“Why did they have to sacrifice anything?”
“It was a symbol,” Grandmother explains. “Of an innocent dying on behalf of someone else—the greatest act of love. A choice to die so someone else doesn’t have to.”

This book is definitely one of those hit or miss for most people. I feel as if you are either going to really like it or just be totally disappointed in it. I for the most part fall in the middle, it was just eh. Have you read this book? What did you think of it?

Posted in Young Adult

Star Wars Ahsoka Review — Books and Smizmars

My friend who attended the Texas Teen Book Festival with me earlier this month wrote a review for a book by one of the authors who attended! If you are a big Star Wars fan, you should definitely check out his post!!!

I haven’t kept it a secret that Ahsoka Tano is my favorite character from the Star Wars universe going from annoying token kid character inserted into Clone Wars to appeal to kids, to broken hero, to rebel alliance merger, and beyond. I was excited to discover that my favorite character would be getting her own […]

via Star Wars Ahsoka Review — Books and Smizmars