Written & Video Review: These Vicious Masks by Tarun Shanker & Kelly Zekas

23688792These Vicious Masks by Tarun Shanker

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Bought
Publication Date: February 9th 2016
Publisher: Swoon Reads
Point of View: 1st Person Feminine
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres &  Themes: Young Adult, Fantasy, Historical, Romance, Family, Mystery

BLURB:

Jane Austen meets X-­Men in this gripping and adventure-­filled paranormal romance set in Victorian London.

England, 1882. Evelyn is bored with society and its expectations. So when her beloved sister, Rose, mysteriously vanishes, she ignores her parents and travels to London to find her, accompanied by the dashing Mr. Kent. But they’re not the only ones looking for Rose. The reclusive, young gentleman Sebastian Braddock is also searching for her, claiming that both sisters have special healing powers. Evelyn is convinced that Sebastian must be mad, until she discovers that his strange tales of extraordinary people are true—and that her sister is in graver danger than she feared. Continue reading

Review: Manga Classics: The Scarlet Letter by Stacy King, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Crystal Chan & SunNeko Lee

Manga Classics: The Scarlet Letter by Stacy King

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Received: NetGalley
Publication Date: March 10th 2015
Publisher: Udon Entertainment
Point of View: /
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Historical, Religion, Manga, Classics

BLURB:

A powerful tale of forbidden love, shame, and revenge comes to life in Manga Classics: The Scarlet Letter. Faithfully adapted by Crystal Chan from the original novel, this new edition features stunning artwork by SunNeko Lee (Manga Classics: Les Miserables) which will give old and new readers alike a fresh insight into the Nathaniel Hawthorne’s tragic saga of Puritan America.

Manga Classics editions feature classic stories, faithfully adapted and illustrated in manga style, and available in both hardcover and softcover editions.

Proudly presented by UDON Entertainment and Morpheus Publishing. Continue reading

Review: Jackaby (Jackaby #1) by William Ritter

Jackaby by William Ritter

My rating:2 of 5 stars
Received: borrowed
Publication Date: September 16th, 2014
Publisher: Algonquin Young Readers
Point of View: 1st Person & Female
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Historical , Mystery, Paranormal

BLURB:

“Miss Rook, I am not an occultist,” Jackaby said. “I have a gift that allows me to see truth where others see the illusion–and there are many illusions. All the world’s a stage, as they say, and I seem to have the only seat in the house with a view behind the curtain.”

Newly arrived in New Fiddleham, New England, 1892, and in need of a job, Abigail Rook meets R. F. Jackaby, an investigator of the unexplained with a keen eye for the extraordinary–including the ability to see supernatural beings. Abigail has a gift for noticing ordinary but important details, which makes her perfect for the position of Jackaby’s assistant. On her first day, Abigail finds herself in the midst of a thrilling case: A serial killer is on the loose. The police are convinced it’s an ordinary villain, but Jackaby is certain it’s a nonhuman creature, whose existence the police–with the exception of a handsome young detective named Charlie Cane–deny.

Doctor Who meets Sherlock in William Ritter’s debut novel, which features a detective of the paranormal as seen through the eyes of his adventurous and intelligent assistant in a tale brimming with cheeky humor and a dose of the macabre. Continue reading

Review: Grave Mercy (His Fair Assassin, #1) by Robin LaFevers

Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Received: NetGalley
Publication Date: April 3rd 2012
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Point of View: 1st person & Female
Genres & Themes: YA, Historical, Fantasy, Assassins, Secrets, Plotting, Romance, Friendship

BLURB:

Why be the sheep, when you can be the wolf?

Seventeen-year-old Ismae escapes from the brutality of an arranged marriage into the sanctuary of the convent of St. Mortain, where the sisters still serve the gods of old. Here she learns that the god of Death Himself has blessed her with dangerous gifts—and a violent destiny. If she chooses to stay at the convent, she will be trained as an assassin and serve as a handmaiden to Death. To claim her new life, she must destroy the lives of others.

Ismae’s most important assignment takes her straight into the high court of Brittany—where she finds herself woefully under prepared—not only for the deadly games of intrigue and treason, but for the impossible choices she must make. For how can she deliver Death’s vengeance upon a target who, against her will, has stolen her heart? Continue reading

Review: The Originals: The Rise (The Originals #1) by Julie Plec

The Originals: The Rise by Julie Plec

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: NetGalley
Publication Date: January 27th 2015
Publisher: HQN Books
Genres & Themes: YA, Historical, Fantasy, Vampires, Werewolves, Witches, Family, Conspiracy, Romance.

BLURB:

Family is power. The Original vampire family swore it to each other a thousand years ago. They pledged to remain together always and forever. But even when you’re immortal, promises are hard to keep.

Arriving in New Orleans in 1722, Original vampire siblings Klaus, Elijah and Rebekah Mikaelson believe they’ve escaped their dangerous past. But the city is lawless, a haven for witches and werewolves unwilling to share territory. The siblings are at their mercy…especially after Klaus meets the beautiful and mysterious Vivianne. Her impending marriage is key to ending the war between the supernatural factions—and Klaus’s attraction to her could destroy the uneasy alliance. As Elijah works toward securing a piece of the city for his family, and Rebekah fights her unexpected feelings for a French captain, will Klaus’s volatile desires bring their world crashing down—and tear them apart for good? Continue reading

Author Interview: Sherry D. Ficklin (Queen of Someday)

THE AUTHOR

Her web site.

Sherry D. Ficklin is a full time writer from Colorado where she lives with her husband, four kids, two dogs, and a fluctuating number of chickens and house guests. A former military brat, she loves to travel and meet new people. She can often be found browsing her local bookstore with a large white hot chocolate in one hand and a towering stack of books in the other. That is, unless she’s on deadline at which time she, like the Loch Ness monster, is only seen in blurry photographs.
In her spare time she co-hosts Curvy Writer Radio and is constantly trying to take over the world.
 
THE BOOK
Queen of Someday Book Cover

Title: Queen of Someday
Series: Stolen Empire #1
Publisher: Clean Teen Publishing
Publication Date: October 7th, 2014
Genres & Themes: YA, Historical Fiction, Romance, Forbidden Love.

BLURB:

Before she can become the greatest empress in history, fifteen-year-old Sophie will have to survive her social-climbing mother’s quest to put her on the throne of Russia—at any cost.

Imperial Court holds dangers like nothing Sophie has ever faced before. In the heart of St. Petersburg, surviving means navigating the political, romantic, and religious demands of the bitter Empress Elizabeth and her handsome, but sadistic nephew, Peter. Determined to save her impoverished family—and herself—Sophie vows to do whatever is necessary to thrive in her new surroundings. But an attempt on her life and an unexpected attraction threatens to derail her plans…

In a battle for the soul of a nation, will love or destiny reign supreme?

Continue reading

Review: Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Received: bought (and so glad I did!)
Publication date: February 21st 2012
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Genres & Themes: YA, Coming of Age, LGBT, Contemporary, Friendship, Trust, Family, Loyalty.

BLURB:

Aristotle is an angry teen with a brother in prison. Dante is a know-it-all who has an unusual way of looking at the world. When the two meet at the swimming pool, they seem to have nothing in common. But as the loners start spending time together, they discover that they share a special friendship—the kind that changes lives and lasts a lifetime. And it is through this friendship that Ari and Dante will learn the most important truths about themselves and the kind of people they want to be.

Continue reading