Release Day and Giveaway: Every Last Breath by Jennifer L. Armentrout

The Epic Finale in Jennifer L. Armentrout’s

Dark Elements Series…Who Will She Choose?

 

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Every choice has consequences—but seventeen-year-old Layla faces tougher choices than most. Light or darkness. Wickedly sexy demon prince Roth, or Zayne, the gorgeous, protective Warden she never thought could be hers. Hardest of all, Layla has to decide which side of herself to trust.

Don’t miss the conclusion to this stunning Young Adult Paranormal series filled with danger and romance published by HarlequinTEEN.

Grab your copy today!

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EXCERPT: 

 

Roth cleared his throat. “Shortie, look…look at your hand.”

Look at my hand? Why in the world would he be asking me to do that in the midst of all the cray?

“Do it,” he said quietly and too gently.

The dread exploded in my gut like buckshot, and my gaze dropped to my left hand. I expected to see the weird marbling of black and gray, a mixture of the demon and Warden that existed inside of me and a combination I’d become almost familiar with by now. My nails had lengthened and sharpened, and I could tell they were hard enough to cut through steel, as hard as my skin, but my skin…it was still pink. Really pink.

“What the…?” My gaze traveled to my other hand. It was the same. Just pink. My wings twitched, reminding me that I had shifted.

Zayne swallowed. “Your…your wings…”

“What about my wings?” I almost screeched, reaching be‑ hind me. “Are they broken? Did they not come out—” The tips of my fingers came into contact with something as soft as silk. My hand jerked back. “What…”

Stacey’s watery eyes had doubled in size. “Um, Layla, there’s a mirror above the fireplace. I think you need to look in it.”

I met Roth’s gaze for a second before I spun around and all but ran to the fireplace I was sure Stacey’s mom had never used. Clutching the white mantel, I stared at my reflection.

I looked normal, like I did before I shifted…like I was going to class or something. My eyes were the palest shade of gray, a watered-down blue. My hair was so blond it was almost white, and a mess of waves that went in every direction like usual. I looked like a colorless china doll, which was nothing new, except for the two fangs jutting out of my mouth. I wouldn’t show them off at school, but that wasn’t what caught my attention and held it.

It was my wings.

They were large, not as massive as Zayne’s or Roth’s, and normally they were almost leathery in texture, but now they were black…black and feathered. Like legit feathered. That soft, silky thing I’d felt? It had been tiny feathers.

Feathers.

“Oh my God,” I whispered at my reflection. “I have feathers.”

“Those are definitely feathered wings,” Roth commented.

I whipped around, knocking over a lamp with my feathered right wing. “I have feathers on my wings!”

Roth cocked his head to the side. “Yeah, you do.”

He was absolutely no help, so I turned to Zayne. “Why do I have feathers on my wings?”

Zayne shook his head slowly. “I don’t know, Layla. I’ve never seen anything like this.”

“Liar,” hissed Roth, shooting him a dark look. “You’ve seen that before. So have I.”

 

 

 

9780373211142_prd_proof_FCEVERY LAST BREATH Synopsis:

Some loves will last ‘til your dying breath

Every choice has consequences—but seventeen-year-old Layla faces tougher choices than most. Light or darkness. Wickedly sexy demon prince Roth, or Zayne, the gorgeous, protective Warden she never thought could be hers. Hardest of all, Layla has to decide which side of herself to trust.

Layla has a new problem, too. A Lilin—the deadliest of demons—has been unleashed, wreaking havoc on those around her…including her best friend. To keep Sam from a fate much, much worse than death, Layla must strike a deal with the enemy while saving her city—and her race—from destruction.

Torn between two worlds and two different boys, Layla has no certainties, least of all survival, especially when an old bargain comes back to haunt them all. But sometimes, when secrets are everywhere and the truth seems unknowable, you have to listen to your heart, pick a side—and then fight like hell…

Amazon ** Barnes and Noble ** iBooks ** IndieBound ** Kobo ** BAM

 

“Armentrout is a major talent…I just can’t stop reading!”

New York Times bestselling author Gena Showalter

“Armentrout works her magic with swoon-worthy guys and a twist you never see coming.”

–#1 New York Times bestselling author Abbi Glines on White Hot Kiss

 

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And don’t miss the first titles in the Dark Elements Series!

BITTER SWEET LOVE

Amazon ** Barnes and Noble ** iBooks ** BAM ** Kobo

WHITE HOT KISS

Amazon ** Barnes and Noble ** BAM ** iBooks ** IndieBound ** Kobo

STONE COLD TOUCH

Amazon ** Barnes and Noble ** iBooks ** IndieBound ** Kobo ** BAM

 

JLA_Author-photoAbout Jennifer L. Armentrout:

# 1 New York Times and # 1 International Bestselling author Jennifer lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing, she spends her time reading, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, and hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russell Loki.

Her dreams of becoming an author started in algebra class, where she spent most of her time writing short stories….which explains her dismal grades in math. Jennifer writes young adult paranormal, science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary romance. She is published with Spencer Hill Press, Entangled Teen and Brazen, Disney/Hyperion and Harlequin Teen. Her book Obsidian has been optioned for a major motion picture and her Covenant Series has been optioned for TV. Her young adult romantic suspense novel DON’T LOOK BACK was a 2014 nominated Best in Young Adult Fiction by YALSA.

She also writes Adult and New Adult contemporary and paranormal romance under the name J. Lynn. She is published by Entangled Brazen and HarperCollins.

Website ** Facebook ** Twitter ** Novel Goodreads ** Author Goodreads

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Review: The Devil You Know by Trish Doller

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Title: The Devil You Know by Trish Doller

Buy Links: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, iBooks

Genre: YA Thriller

Rating: 3/5

Synopsis: Eighteen-year-old Arcadia wants adventure. Living in a tiny Florida town with her dad and four-year-old brother, Cadie spends most of her time working, going to school, and taking care of her family. So when she meets two handsome cousins at a campfire party, she finally has a chance for fun. They invite her and friend to join them on a road trip, and it’s just the risk she’s been craving-the opportunity to escape. But what starts out as a fun, sexy journey quickly becomes dangerous when she discovers that one of them is not at all who he claims to be. One of them has deadly intentions.

A road trip fling turns terrifying in this contemporary story that will keep readers on the edge of their seats.


I say this often and I mean it–I love thrillers. There’s something about sussing out a high-stakes mystery that makes me flip rapid-fire through a book. Needless to say, I was very excited to pick this one up. Southern thriller, yes please. I have a lot of thoughts on this one, good and bad, but it was one I finished quickly. 

What I liked: I’m a character driven reader. Not only do I have to feel a connection but I need to understand the stakes. With Cadie, I understood her motivation. I mean her actions are damn stupid, but I totally get it. She’s the epitome of stuck. Stuck in a small town, stuck with a family she didn’t ask for, stuck watching her ex move on. Girl has issues, so it makes perfect sense that she decides to rebel. Doller’s characters feel like real teens. Heck, she even bring disapproving parents into the mix. Frankly, it’s refreshing to read something where teens are just teens. Cadie goes off with two guys and boy do things heat up. Besides great characters, I love a steamy romance and this one gets steamy. Spoiler alert: Sex in a graveyard. Weird, yet when running away with

What I didn’t like: There are a lot of wholes in this story. A lot. I can generally suspend disbelief, but there were moments when this was just a little too much for me. Cadie comes off as a mostly smart young woman and while I understand the events that lead her on a road trip with two strangers, I also wanted to be like “really?” My biggest issue with this book is that nothing really happens. It’s short. The action is brief and the stakes don’t really seem that high. There’s maybe 20 pages of real action before boom done, bad guy taken care of, and the damsel saved.

Overall, this was a fine enough read. There’s not a great deal of build up but the steamy romance saves it. If you like your romance lite with serial killers than you’ll enjoy this well enough. 3/5

Random Ranting: When to Slow Down

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For months I read, reviewed at least twice a week, worked, tutored, and generally began a process of running myself into the ground. However, there was a light at the end of the tunnel, the summer. a time when everything could slow down and I could relax and focus. Yea, I had dreams. This summer has been anything but relaxing. I’ve spent the last several weeks traveling, the weeks before that tutoring, and as school looms ahead I feel the weeks to prepare for the new school year getting smaller and smaller.

So what’s the purpose of this rant? Well, the purpose is to reaffirm that sometime’s it’s okay to step back and take a break. I’m sure everyone has noticed a decline in reviews the last few weeks and that’s due to a lack of time. Trying to do it all has lead to crashing and crashing hard. This past weekend I finished two books, but I also spent 16 hours sleeping.

While I want to continue blogging, I know there are times when it has to be a lesser priority in my life. Posting 4-5 times a week and staying on top of my other priorities can be exhausting and right now I would rather post fewer reviews, take care of myself, prepare for the new year, and continue to enjoy the remainder of my summer. Hence, the point of this post. If you don’t hear from me weekly, fret not. I’m reading and I’ll always be back for review. 🙂

 

Review: The Heart of Betrayal by Mary E. Pearson

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Title: The Heart of Betrayal (The Remnant Chronicles #2) by Mary E. Pearson

Publication Date: July 7th, 2015

Genre: YA Fantasy

Buy Links: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, iBooks

Rating: 5/5

Synopsis: Held captive in the barbarian kingdom of Venda, Lia and Rafe have little chance of escape . . . and even less of being together.

Desperate to save her life, Lia’s erstwhile assassin, Kaden, has told the Vendan Komisar that she has a magical gift, and the Komisar’s interest in Lia is greater than either Kaden or Lia foresaw.

Meanwhile, the foundations of Lia’s deeply-held beliefs are crumbling beneath her. Nothing is straightforward: there’s Rafe, who lied to her, but has sacrificed his freedom to protect her; Kaden, who meant to assassinate her but has now saved her life; and the Vendans, whom she always believed to be barbarians but whom she now realizes are people who have been terribly brutalized by the kingdoms of Dalbreck and Morrighan. Wrestling with her upbringing, her gift, and her very sense of self, Lia will have to make powerful choices that affect her country, her people . . . and her own destiny.


 

“The Heart of Betrayal,” was my most anticipated read of the summer. I have literally been counting down the days until this one came. Then something crazy happened. Netflix got real and I began doing a ton of traveling. I knew this was going to be the type of book I sat down on a Sunday and read in one sitting. Like most highly anticipated books, I hesitated to start this one in case it did not live up to the hype. “Kiss of Deception,” was one of my favorite Fantasy books and I prayed that the sequel lived up to its amazingness. Needless to say, I was not disappointed. This sequel is amazing. There are so many strong aspects and the pacing keeps you turning page after page.

What I liked: Lia continues to be a badass female MC. She may be a Princess but she’s not about to let anyone push her around, even when facing possible death, she keeps her spunk. The stakes are much higher in “The Heart of Betrayal,” and much like its title, Lia must navigate who in fact is truly on her side and who is about to stab a knife in her back. The stakes are much higher in book #2 than they are in book #1 and the tension is very real. The world-building in book #2 is also beyond strong. Venda and the presentation of the Komizar allows Pearson to explore the many shades of grey surrounding her world. She begins to explore the idea that Lia can love a group of people while still wishing to escape their barbaric government. In Book #1 Pearson played with the many angles of her characters, now she plays with the many facets of her world. Though there is a lot of violence and bloodshed their is also a lot of heart-felt moments between Lia and the common people of Venda.

What I didn’t like: While Lia is very much my favorite character and I enjoyed that so much of the book was from her POV, I missed Rafe. I’m team Rafe 100% and while I don’t despise Kaden, I don’t want to read so much about him. Given that we are in Venda it makes sense that we get more of Kaden’s perspective, but I missed the equilibrium in the chapters between him and Rafe. Other than the lack of Rafe, I did not love the ending. Way to just kill us all a little.

Overall, this is a fast-paced, exciting, and complicated read. “The Heart of Betrayal,” is a stellar sequel to a much beloved book. 5/5

 

Top Ten Tuesday: 10 Books I Recently Acquired

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This week’s Top Ten Tuesday as hosted by The Broke and Bookish is centered around the Top Ten books I have recently acquired. Now recently, I have made a promise to myself that I would not buy any more books until I read all of the one’s I currently own. No mean feat since I buy things and they stay on my shelf for months until I decide I’m in the mood to pick them up. I’ve owned the “Shatter Me” series for years and just started/finished. Anyway, the point of this is that some of these books are aged. 


 

 

1. The Devil You Know by Trish Doller: I’m slugging through this one currently but it’s been a busy weekend and it’s not really snagging me yet. Hopefully, it doesn’t make it’s way back on the shelf!

2. Royal Wedding by Meg Cabot: After reading “The Royal We”   I needed more Princesses in my life. Plus, I read the Princesses Diaries when they were originally published so it’s nice to see an adult series.

3.The Heart of Betrayal by Mary E. Pearson: This just came in the mail and I must devour it. I actually grabbed a library copy instead of buying it so I’d be forced to read it.

4. A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas: This is like 3rd in my current que, I swear.

5. Daughter of Smoke and Bones by Laini Taylor: I picked this up from the library on a recommendation

6. Keep Me Safe by Maya Banks: I read a review for this and saw it in the library and decided “why not.”

7. Give Me Liberty L.M. Elliot: Yeaaaa this one’s a back to school reading I happened to not own. Ahhh the teacher life.

8. True by Hilary Duff: I read the first two forever ago and in a crazed just off the beach, sitting in the airport funk I purchased this via Kindle. I’m only slightly ashamed.

9. The Duke and I by Julia Quinn: Again, I need more royalty in my Summer. 

10. The Giver: Cause I somehow misplaced my copy.

 

So there is this weeks list. I could have made a Top 50 but that’s mostly embarrassing. 

 

 

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Hyped Books I’ve Never Read

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After a bit of a hiatus I’m back with a new Top Ten Tuesday as hosted by The Broke and Bookish. This week’s topic centers around books that are super hyped up, but I have never read. Not going to lie, very hard topic since I’ll generally read anything once. What I found is that this list is mostly made up of those fantastic contemporary novels that everyone but me seems to like. I for some reason don’t read a lot of books with diverse characters, a realization making me rethink my whole life.

 Even when I was an actual teen, I always enjoyed books geared more towards the paranormal or fantasy. I blame my intense love of Harry Potter. Anyways, here’s my list. Anyone want to try and sell me on the finer points of some of these? 


 

1. If I Stay by Gayle Foreman: Have not seen the movie, didn’t read the book, yet I own three signed copies? What is my life. 

2. Anything Ever Written By John Green: Look, as an educator I appreciate John Green trying to tackle difficult and real teen issues. As a reader he’s not someone I’m interested in picking up.

3. Red Rising by Pierce Brown: Almost all my book friends have read and loved this one, yet every time I say I’m going to read it, I don’t. I want to like it, but something about the synopsis turns me off.

4. Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins: I think I would have been more inclined to read this when I was a pre-teen and still deeply obsessed with Meg Cabot. Not that, that’s a testament to the book or anyone reading it, just to the fact that it’s not something I’m likely to pick up these days. Even though someone keeps bugging me (*you know who you are*)

5. Avalon by Mindee Arnett: I have friends who literally went nuts when they got this and read it in a day and then begged me to read it with the same ferocity so we could discuss. Sadly, it has not happened.

6. Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell: Okay, so I’m going to confess that until this year I had no idea who Rainbow Rowell (super cool name) was. I’ve seen this book everywhere, but I was just like “hmm.” That remains my general mentality.

7. Love Letters to the Dead by Ava Dellaira: Again, not really my cup of tea, especially since every review I’ve read mentions how gut-wrenchingly sad it is.

8. Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo: Normally, I would be pouncing on this one, especially since I’m so excited for “Six of Crows,” but everytime I think about reading it something stops me.

9. Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir: Outlier cause I have every intention of reading this, at some point, soon, in the future, this Summer, before school starts, in lieu of lesson planning, before I buy anymore books…you get the point.

10. The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh: For months I could not talk books without having someone bring this up. Apparently, it is awesome and yet…

 

So, that’s my list. Anyone have any thought, should I pick up any of these RIGHT NOW?!

Review: Rook by Sharon Cameron

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Title: Rook by Sharon Cameron

Publication Date: April 28, 2015

Buy Links: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, iBooks

Genre: Fantasy YA

Rating: 2.5/5

Synopsis: History has a way of repeating itself. In the Sunken City that was once Paris, all who oppose the new revolution are being put to the blade. Except for those who disappear from their prison cells, a red-tipped rook feather left in their place. Is the mysterious Red Rook a savior of the innocent or a criminal?

Meanwhile, across the sea in the Commonwealth, Sophia Bellamy’s arranged marriage to the wealthy René Hasard is the last chance to save her family from ruin. But when the search for the Red Rook comes straight to her doorstep, Sophia discovers that her fiancé is not all he seems. Which is only fair, because neither is she.

As the Red Rook grows bolder and the stakes grow higher, Sophia and René find themselves locked in a tantalizing game of cat and mouse

 


 

Ugh, so I made a major mistake before reading this book, one I usually do not make because I know better. I read other people’s reviews after I bought it! I know. Bad, bad, bad. Reviews will never stop me from reading a book I am really interested, honestly, they do not even color my perception of other books, but for some reason after reading a review I put off reading the book I purchased. When I say put off, I mean sometimes for years. Now, I only put this one off for about two months, but still.

Going into “Rook,” I thought I would either love it or hate it, as the reviews on it were very polarizing, yet I felt myself really torn. I didn’t outright hate it (I wouldn’t take the time to post a review if I did) but I wasn’t “OMG in love.” I’ve got some thoughts:

What I liked: Anyone who has read one of my reviews knows I am very character driven. If I can’t connect with a character, especially the MC, I’m not interested. I could connect  with Sophia Bellamy. Sophia is the type of female character who thinks she knows what she wants, drives into action without weighing the consequences, and generally makes a mountain out of a mole hill. Usually these types of characters drive me nuts, even if they are very reminiscent of real life teens. What drew me to Sophia was that she was written as this bigger than life character, yet she had zero special powers. Sure she was semi-decent in a fight, but her greatest strength proved to be playing on other underestimation of her. She drove the book for me. I longed to see how she would out-think her enemies. Which brings me to my next point on the multiple POVs. Cameron begins the book from Sophia’s POV then throughout allows glimpses into secondary characters minds. Originally, this confused me since there seems to be no rhyme or reason to the switch, but soon I understand it’s to allow the reader in on information that is necessary for the pacing of the book, especially towards the end when each character is working off their own agenda. Now, I’m a big fan of romance. Honestly, if a book does not have any I’m usually not interested in reading it. While the romance in Rook was a little light for me, Rene, Sophia’s fiance was the whew kind of hot. A little dangerous, a little chivalrous, and a perfect match to keep our adventure seeking heroine on her feet. Plus, he was French and accents are tres magnifique.

What I didn’t like: The world building. This is a dysptopian novel, where the government is bad, but the world building did not really explain the revolts. The book is set in futuristic Europe with France and the UK featured prominently, yet I did not really get a sense of what came before to make everyone so touchy. Parts of the revolution at the center of the book paralleled The Reign of Terror from the France of several hundred (or in this case thousands) of years prior. The world building felt lazy. In a dystopian novel where a character is fighting against an evil government, I need to understand the cause/effect, and here I just didn’t. There were points where Cameron dropped breadcrumbs of knowledge, but I’m not interested in spending my time trying to piece those measly crumbs together. Certain parts of the novel just felt stagnant to me and at times I struggled to remain interested.

Overall, this book is not the best example of dystopian out there. The characters are very dynamic and Cameron really took the time to think about her form, yet I struggled being invested in a world I felt I knew little about. It’s a fun read but at times I struggles to finish. 2.5/5