Review and Giveaway: The Collector’s Society by Heather Lyons

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I received a copy of this electronic-ARC in turn for an honest review.

Wow, just wow. This book was incredible. Very rarely do you find a book that couples great writing with an amazingly fresh story idea. Lyons, enraptured me from her very first chapter and I basically spent two days devouring every last inch.

Synopsis: A re-telling of Alice and Wonderland when she’s an adult. She meets some interesting people who form this cool thing called The Collectors Society; turns out that the Collectors Society actually collects storybook characters who moonlight as superheros.  Alice has some secrets and it so happens Wonderland may not have been what we all thought.

So, I decided to do this review a little differently than my normal style. Instead of the usual break down of likes and dislikes, I’m just going to focus on what I liked, because I really did not have any dislikes. This book was literally amazing.

Lyons’ writing style was mystical. Really, she took an idea that was crazy convoluted and made it simple and engaging. I felt like all of these characters popped right out of their books, yet they were all well developed and were made a part of Lyons story. The English major nerd in me was enraptured and my nerd brain was exploding. I spent a good chunk of time trying to discover who matched up to what book. It made reading fun!

Alice was a butt kicking heroine, aka, my favorite kind. As one of the character’s points out in the beginning, she’s nothing like she was in her books. Half of the glory of “The Collectors’ Society” was finding out what secrets Alice was hiding, and boy did she hide quite a few. Watching them unravel was partially what kept you hooked all the way through. That coupled with her steamy romance with one, Hucklberry Finn, made this a must-read book.

I’m usually not someone who can classify one book as my absolute favorite, but I’m going to go ahead and call it folks, this one was my favorite of the year. If you don’t pick it up, you are nuts! You have a chance to win your own copy by following the rafflecopter link below. Be sure to enter, this is a fresh new book and a great take on a few old classics.

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Click on the links below to buy your copy today: Amazon, Itunes

About the Author

heather_front_headshot  Heather Lyons writes epic, heartfelt love stories and has always had a thing for words. In addition to writing, she’s also been an archaeologist and a teacher. She and her husband and children live in sunny Southern California and are currently working their way through every cupcakery she can find.

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Review: Fever (A Songbird Novel) by Melissa Pearl

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I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review

Synopsis: You have a girl named Ella who is an orphan; you have a guy named Cole (also an orphan);  you have a control-freak boyfriend named David; add a touch of jazz, shower singing, and college and you have a recipe for a great NA romance.

What I liked: I liked the overall idea of the story and how even though it is a romance it really centers on the two main characters, Ella and Cole, growing up and discovering who they are. Unlike most college students, they lack the added benefit of having their parents there to help sort them out. I thought their romance was sweet and was based on realistic things, like common interest. Yes, there was the typical, boy and girl meet and have mad steamy feelings for each other, but the foil of Ella’s boyfriend David, made it so that the story was not rushed. Ella and Cole didn’t just jump into bed together and fall madly, deeply in love/lust. Instead, Pearl, built a camaraderie between the two, and by the end the reader really felt that they were meant for one another, and not just sexually.

What I raised an eyebrow on: I liked Ella, really, but come on girl! Sheesh, she frustrated the heck out of me. I’m someone who likes a strong, female character, and Ella was simply not doing it for me. I found it a little difficult to understand how the death of her parents changed her so drastically. I just felt like something was missing from her character development. I was waiting for her crazy to be explained more thoroughly. I did like that at the end, she’s able to have a really wonderful and mature discussion with her ex-David.  Also, how did Cole manage to get that band from Chicago to Washington in like half-a-second?? I’m not great with geography but, but I assume that’s a long trip…

Biggest Surprise: DAVID! At no point in this story did I hate him. Yes, he was unknowingly standing in the way of Ella and Cole, and yes, he was kind of self-centered, but overall he was a normal 20-something control freak. I actually felt bad for him and his very public and undeserved humiliation. The ending conversation between him and Ella was probably my favorite part of the book. It was wonderfully written and really highlighted what happens in most young romances, they fall apart for no better reason than incompatibility. The fact that he makes Ella take responsibility for her part in their demise was just amazing. Way not to be a douche David!

Overall, I really liked this book. I’m not always a huge Contemporary reader, but I liked the sweetness of Fever. It was very well written and progressed at a realistic pace. 7/10

Wishlist Wednesday

So October is a big month for books! Basically, my paychecks hate me. Even when I am lucky enough to receive ARC copies, I love having my own copy of my favorite book, all shiny and new, with that new book smell. According to my roommate, I’m a little crazy-town. But being a book lover isn’t just about the read, it’s about the entire experience. Going into a book store and browsing is part of the way I discover new authors.

 

I’m lucky enough to live in a great city, with a great author presence, and right down the street from a FANTASTIC independent bookstore. Seriously, sometimes I go there because I’m having a  horrible day and need to be surrounded by all the things I love, coffee, books, banangrams. That being said, going to Barnes and Noble is just as great, just a different type of experience. Either way, this month, I’m going to be doing a bit of the independent browse, as well as, the whole chain thing. I’ve got a list of what I have to read, but be sure to post suggestions below, or tell me what’s on your list.

 

                Reading Wishlist for October 

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Review: Queen of Zombie Hearts by Gena Showalter

 

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So, last book. I have been waiting for this one for months and months, especially as early reviews began to come in and were raving. I could not wait to get my hands on this and when I finally did it felt like Christmas, book Christmas. I finished it in 2 days and it was a joy to devour each word of Gena Showalter’s amazing ending. She’s said in a couple interviews that she didn’t know how this was going to end, but it never felt that way from the readers point. She tied up all her lose ends nicely and gave you all the steaminess that she is known for dishing out.

Synopsis: The book is the ending of the White Rabbit Chronicles and boy does it end. Ton of deaths, tons of love, and tons of fighting. Basically, a Gena Showalter special.

What I liked: Cole and Ali, HOLY CRAP ON A STICK! I think Showalter was trying to kill me. There’s a shower scene, that’s all I will say. When you pick it up, be sure to anticipate that one. As usual, I absolutely adored the characters and the twists that Showalter added. There’s a big one and at first it seemed a little forced, but somehow it did kind of tie everything together.

What I didn’t like: There are a lot of deaths. A lot. And a lot of betrayal.

This book was an amazing way to end a series. I wish I could write a more thorough review, but I really don’t want to give anything away to anyone. One of the best parts of reading this was discovering all the twists and turns, wondering what Anima’s next move would be, and trying not to have heart palipitations from Cole and Ali. This is not a standalone books, so make sure that if you haven’t read the first book you pick it up. 9/10

 

Review: Midnight Runes by Celeste Buie

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I received a copy of this book for an honest review and so you shall have an honest review. Let me preface this by saying I’ve been on a lot of coffee lately. Now, that it is finally starting to get cold here in D.C. I can drink latte’s without sweating to death, or sit in my favorite coffeehouse/bookstore without freezing to death. Anyway, enough about the weather and onto the review!

Synopsis: This book follows Brynn Emerson, a normal girl who has what she thinks is a normal, perfect boyfriend named Trevor. Problem is, Trevor has been acting way shady lately and Brynn has no idea why. Eventually, Trevor decides to call it quite leaving Brynn, understandably, heartbroken. Enter Landon. Or what I like to refer to as, ‘the nice rebound.’ Only problem is, he seems to know Trevor and also seems a bit shady. Add in some strange dreams on Brynn’s part and you’ve got yourself a recipe for a paranormal love-triangle.

What I liked: Landon and Brynn. Gosh, they were so cute and their relationship felt really natural. It was very odd to me to be reading a book where the girl has a boyfriend in the beginning and you don’t get that whoosh of unrealistic, die for you romance that you often find in this genre, but the realism of Landon and Brynn’s relationship was actually kind of nice. I also wanted to know, WHAT THE HECK WAS GOING ON! Usually, I’m pretty good at deducing the inner-mystery, but this book alluded me up until the reveal (? I’m putting a question mark because we don’t get full answers here). Buie, set me up to want to read the next book in this series and she did so beautifully. Darn it.

What I didn’t like: The pacing was really slow. There I said it. But, honestly, I felt like Buie could have revealed a lot more, or expanded upon certain things if the plot picked up pace. I stuck around, but at times I found it difficult to get excited.

What I Meh’ed on: Trevor. Dude. WTF. Like a typical book-boyfriend he was super bi-polar and sometimes it felt a little less sexy and a lot more annoying.

Overall, this was a fairly good read. Yes, there are some slow parts, but if you like trying to suss out a book the mystery in this one will hold your attention. I’m excited to see how it unfolds in the next installment 6.5/10