Book Review: The Memory Thief

the memory thiefTitle: The Memory Thief

Author: Lauren Mansy

Pub. Date: October 1, 2019

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️.5


In the city of Craewick, memories reign. The power-obsessed ruler of the city, Madame, has cultivated a society in which memories are currency, citizens are divided by ability, and Gifted individuals can take memories from others through touch as they please.

Seventeen-year-old Etta Lark is desperate to live outside of the corrupt culture, but grapples with the guilt of an accident that has left her mother bedridden in the city’s asylum. When Madame threatens to put her mother up for auction, a Craewick practice in which a “criminal’s” memories are sold to the highest bidder before being killed, Etta will do whatever it takes to save her. Even if it means rejoining the Shadows, the rebel group she swore off in the wake of the accident years earlier.

To prove her allegiance to the Shadows and rescue her mother, Etta must steal a memorized map of the Maze, a formidable prison created by the bloodthirsty ruler of a neighboring Realm. So she sets out on a journey in which she faces startling attacks, unexpected romance, and, above all, her own past in order to set things right in her world.


This will be a short, spoiler free review!

I ended up really enjoying this book. I didn’t have many, if at all any expectations going into it and ultimately really enjoyed it. My only complaint is that I thought the timeline of the story was a bit rushed. From start to end, it’s roughly a week. A week! If there wasn’t romance in it – I probably would have been okay, but since there was (and I loved the romance/Love Interest- not knocking it) a week just didn’t seem reasonable.

I think that if this book had been slightly longer (because I also just wanted more story!) that this could have been a solid 4/4.5 read for me. There just wasn’t enough book to satisfy me. On the other hand, I did enjoy that it didn’t take me a super long time to read it. I thought the premise was cool, there were so many twists that I didn’t see coming and had me gasping and the magic system was interesting.

I think the magic system was another thing that could have really benefitted from having more book too explain and explore it. It took me a bit to understand it, and even then I’m still just a bit confused.

Overall, if you’re looking for an interesting fantasy that will have you turning the page until three in the morning, you should probably check this on out! It’s my favorite kind of fantasy – two people traveling alone together, in the woods, caring and protecting each other…give me more! Out tomorrow, make sure you pick it up and read it!

Netflix and What’s on My List

Today’s post is going to be a little random, because I wasn’t able to finish the book I was reading and wanted to post a review for today. So instead, I’m going to share with you the asinine number of movies and shows that I have saved to my Netflix List – as the title of this posts suggests.

Now, I haven’t watched everything on this list. It’s mainly so I can find things easier later…or at least, that’s what I tell myself. There is so much on it anymore, it’s easier to just search for whatever I’m looking for, rather than going through it. I also can’t bring myself to cull the list because I do want to watch these things, it’s just that I don’t want to watch them right now.

These are in particular order – just whatever order Netflix has decided to show them to me today.

Let’s get into this.

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As you can probably tell, my viewing tastes are all across the board. Sometimes it’s because I get bored very easily and need to switch it up. Other times it’s because I go through binge periods where I just inhale stories. When I’m not reading – probably due to a slump, I’m most likely watching something. I liked having shows on in the background if I’m doing something, like cleaning, or art or cooking. I don’t necessarily watch them but listening to them is fun. It’s also something my brother does not understand, but it’s also why I might get through a show a lot faster than others.

Are there any shows/movies on My List that you have seen? Want to see? What is your go to show to play in the background while doing other things?

Writing Update #8

I feel like I just wrote one of these and yet, another month is just about over. I’m still making progress and I think I figured out why I’ve been partially stuck. This is happening so often, and frustrates me so much at this point, there are days that I don’t even want to touch this WIP.

Those are the days I reread my past draft. It’s been awhile since I’ve done that and I think one of the biggest reasons I kept getting stuck, because I was struggling to remember what happens.

Yes, I know this story inside and out and what big key moments have to happen and in what order for the story to be told. What I don’t always remember are the little moments – or in this case, a bigger one. This scene isn’t necessarily crucial to the telling of the story. It’s the first big moment that McKenna (my MC) goes against the people who truly care for her. She does something reckless and kind of stupid (for the betterment of everyone on board Destiny) but still it’s a unnecessary risk she doesn’t have to take.

This is very much who she is at the core – willing to do whatever it takes. But for most of this draft, she’s been a little more level headed, ask questions first before punching someone. It’s been interesting watching her grow over the years. First draft McKenna was a spitfire and kind of a bitch.

This scene – I forgot it existed, until this week. I know. I was stuck, and it felt like I had written myself into another hole. Another hole that I would have to dig my way out of, and I was frustrated. I had just moved past one block, only to find another.

The thought crossed my mind, that maybe this book just wasn’t meant to be. That I had reworked it one too many times and now it was just an unsalvageable mess. I won’t say that the rediscovery of this scene is a cure-all, and everything will go smoothly from here, but with a little reworking, I’m hoping this scene puts me back on track.

I started working on it today, and hopefully I finish it tomorrow. I’m actually kind of excited to write it. This WIP has started feeling a little heavy – especially the last couple chapters. That’s okay since a lot has happened and McKenna needs to deal (something she’s not very good at – she tends to lock all her emotions down until they overwhelm her and then she shuts down…yeah, she’s not very good with emotions. Well, emotions that hurt. She’s very good with anger and rage.

She’s learned to rely on herself, and has a hard time accepting help, and when she does, it’s often begrudgingly.

Anyways, since I don’t have much more to disclose, because in 26 days I’ve barely worked on this WIP, I’m going to end it with a peek at a full page. This comes right after an incident and the whole ship has been knocked unconscious (you’ll have to wait for the whole book to find out why) but McKenna overhears two people talking and she’s left scared. Enjoy!

(Also, sorry in advance for any typos/grammar/etc. issues you might see. I’m not perfect and this is a draft!) 

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Let me know in the comments if you would want brief character profiles, or a fan cast or a family tree/relationship chart of all my characters? I’ve been toying with these ideas, but I’m not sure. I don’t want to give everything away, but I’d be willing to introduce you to my two MCs.

 

Book Review: These Wicked Waters

these wicked waters.jpgTitle: These Wicked Waters

Author: Emily Layne

Pub. Date: October 22, 2019

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️.5


A centuries-old curse plagues the island of Viaii Nisi and an ancient enemy lurks beneath the depths of the surrounding water.

Annie Mayfield has heard all the stories and rumors about the island that is now home to the brand new Mayfield Villa resort, and she is definitely not psyched about having to spend her summer working there. The island’s name alone—Viaii Nisi, or violent island—is enough to make any sane person seriously reconsider it as a vacation destination. Then there are the mysterious deaths of every previous owner! It’s a history Annie’s mother is quick to shrug off, but when a guest goes missing on opening night, Annie really starts to get the creeps.

And then Annie makes a truly terrifying discovery: ruins filled with bones and one skeleton that seems to be half human and half fish. Intrigued by the strange remains and determined to help find the missing guest, Annie channels her inner Nancy Drew—minus the skirt and pearls, of course—in an attempt to uncover the truth about Viaii Nisi. But that truth is beyond anything she could ever have imagined. With her mother in complete denial and local officials unconcerned, Annie finds she’ll have to face her biggest fears if she’s to attempt to save everyone she loves.


I received a copy of this book via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.

I mainly requested this book with the hopes that it would be a quick read, and it was. Based on the synopsis I figured I’d enjoy it – which I did. I’m glad I requested and was approved.

It felt like the Jurassic World movies, but with sirens and I thought the concept was cool. I liked the blend of Greek Mythology with a Modern-Day resort, and the Mayfield Villa would be fun to go to…minus the murderous sirens. While I definitely enjoyed this book and I’m glad it hit my radar, I thought the ending was a bit rushed and I’m left wondering if there is going to be another book. It felt very open ended, but I have no idea what the premise of a second book would be.

I thought the relationship between Annie and Victor (the Love Interest) was a little forced. He’s the attractive life guard at the resort, so of course Annie (the owner’s daughter) and he get together. It was convenient and forced if that makes sense? I liked them together and they had good chemistry, it was just very forced and didn’t feel very organic.

It took me probably half the book to realize that the Lorelei parts (she’s a siren) were the past. For the first half of the book I thought they were happening in sync with Annie’s chapters. I kind of wish that had been clearer. The hints were there, but I guess I missed them. It becomes much clearer in the second half of the book that there is a time difference between Annie and Lorelei, until there isn’t.

Overall, this was a fun, enjoyable read with a bit of mystery and action. For the most part, once you start reading, you won’t want to stop until you finish. Annie’s journey is definitely a wild ride, where in the beginning she’d rather be anywhere else, and at the end…well, you’ll have to read the book to find out! Out, October 22, 2019, make sure you pick it up if you want killer sirens, mystery and a resort villa on a remote Greek Island!

Book Review: Bid My Soul Farewell (Give the Dark My Love #2)

bid my soul farewellTitle: Bid My Soul Farewell (Give the Dark My Love #2)

Author: Beth Revis

Pub. Date: September 24, 2019

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️


The stunning finale of the epic fantasy duology from New York Times bestselling author Beth Revis.

Alchemy student turned necromancer Nedra Brysstain has made a life-changing decision to embrace the darkness–but can the boy who loves her bring her back to the light before she pays the ultimate price?

Lunar Island is trying to heal. The necromantic plague that ravaged the land has been eradicated, and Emperor Auguste, the young and charming leader of the Allyrian Empire, has a plan: rid the island of necromancy once and for all. Though Greggori “Grey” Astor wants what’s best for his people, he knows that allying himself with Auguste threatens the one person he loves most: necromancer Nedra Brysstain. Feeling like he already failed to save Nedra once, Grey becomes determined to help the Emperor rebuild Lunar Island while still keeping Nedra safe from harm.

Back at the quarantine hospital, Nedra’s army of revenants are growing increasingly inhuman by the day. Wracked with guilt for imprisoning their souls, Nedra vows to discover a way to free the dead while still keeping her sister by her side.

But, still reeling from the trauma of the plague, the people of Lunar Island are looking for someone to blame, and Grey can only protect Nedra for so long. And when Nedra and Grey are thrust into a battle with an even more terrifying adversary, Nedra will be pushed to the darkest depths of her necromantic powers. But can Grey let her go that far?


This will be a short spoiler free review.

I managed to knock this book out in a handful of hours. It reads very quickly and overall is enjoyable. I don’t have very strong feelings one way or another. I didn’t love it, nor did I hate it.  Honestly, I remembered basically nothing from my read of Give the Dark My Love, so I struggled a bit towards the beginning trying to remember how the last one ended.

This obviously picks up right where the first book leaves off with Nedra of a singular mindset – to save her sister. She and Grey go on a journey where they each learn more about what their futures are and who they are. Each never expecting that they’re both puppets being controlled in a much larger scheme.

I will say that the ending was a bit disappointing. It kind of fell flat, in my opinion. It just didn’t pack the punch that I think it was supposed to pack. It was just like, oh it’s over now. And the Epilogue didn’t satisfy me either. It all wrapped up too conveniently. It kind of felt like all the consequences of both Nedra and Grey’s actions didn’t matter, which was kind of annoying.

Overall, I liked how the duology ended, but this isn’t a favorite series. If you’ve read Give the Dark My Love you should definitely check this out – releasing today, September 24, 2019 – and wrap up Nedra and Grey’s story.

Currently Reading & Watching #7

Image result for supernatural reading gifIt’s the end of September…HOW? Where did the month go? I don’t understand. Hell, where has this year gone? We’re nine months into 2019 and it feels like it was just New Years Eve. If getting older means time is going to start flying faster, can I opt out? Can I just stop aging at 25? Where’s a vampire that can come turn me and then I can live forever, because this sucks.

Three months left of the year and then we start all over.

Wow, this got sad fast.

Anyways, September has been kind of a crappy reading month, and I’m not really sure why. It’s not a reading slump, or at least it doesn’t feel like one, I just haven’t been reading. I think I’ve said it in a past post that I’m either reading or watching shows, and September has been a month of shows…well one, primarily. But I did read a little bit, just not everything I was supposed to read. Oops.


BOOKS:

Slumber – Becky Bird

I have a review posted for this, which you can view here. It was just a cute, short, adaptation of the Disney Sleeping Beauty story. I actually really enjoyed it. If you want a quick, enjoyable read, with a happily ever after, you should check this out!

Capturing the Devil – Kerri Maniscalco

I also have a spoiler free review of this posted – here. The finale of this series and I still can’t believe it. I have some conflicted feelings, but as a whole, I definitely enjoyed this book. Make sure you check it out!


SHOWS:

Once Upon A Time (Netflix)

Yes, I’m still working my way through it. I’ve gotten to the point where the other stories have been introduced and Regina and The Evil Queen have split, and the EQ cursed Charming and Snow and I got bored. Not to mention that, while I’ve never been a fan of Rumple and Belle, he’s a grade A abusive, controlling asshole at this part of the show and he’s Tiring.

The Flash (Netflix)

I fell behind right before Crisis of Earth X or whatever that four-part crossover event was last year. So, I decided to just start the show over, but it didn’t really catch my attention. I’m not in the mood for super heroes right now apparently.

Supernatural (Netflix)

I saw the ad poster for the final season and figured I should get caught up before then so I could watch it live…and I’ve actually become really invested? I wasn’t exactly sure where I left off when I stopped watching it live, so I started at the Scooby-Doo episode (knowing I’d seen that) and went from there. I’m almost caught up and I cannot wait!

Fear the Walking Dead (Live TV)

Finally caught back up with this show. I saw the mid-season finale, and then didn’t realize it had come back on. I’ve spent the last few days over the last week catching up on all the episodes I missed, and I’m so tired of the villains on this show (and the Walking Dead). They are always trying to “help people” and they just feel villainous for villainous sake. But other than that, I’m actually kind of enjoying the show right now.

Cover Reveal: Sovereign Sacrifice

SS.jpgAnother new Elise Kova book? YES! It’s the fourth book in the Vortex Chronicles Series! And, before you ask, NO you don’t have to have read the Air Awakens Series first…though I highly recommend you do read them at some point because they are simply fantastic! And, even better news – it’s out really soon – October 15, 2019!

So much has happened in the series so far, and this cover makes me so excited for what’s to come! The ending to Failed Future blew my mind and I cannot wait to see what happens to Vi next! This series has quickly become a favorite (like its predecessor) so be ready for a whole lot of screaming!

I’m sure you’re all thinking “just show us the cover already!” but you’re going to have to bear with me for a moment longer. I thought Failed Future was my favorite cover in the series, but this cover…the colors, the characters, the promise it holds…

Sovereign Sacrifice‘s cover is definitely, by far, my favorite in the series! But, I say that each time a new cover is revealed. They’ve all been so dang good!

Synopsis:

 Vi was supposed to be the perfect crown princess. Then, she abandoned her throne.
Vi was supposed to save the world as its Champion. Then, the world she loved vanished.

Now, all she knows is that she has deadly magic and brutal cunning and she’s ready to settle some scores.

Old loves and new allies tell her to play it safe. But Vi is done with caution. She has a chance to right ancient wrongs and this princess-turned-warrior isn’t turning back.

 She’s going to bring an end the vortex the world is trapped in.  

 DOESN’T THAT MAKE YOU SO EXCITED??

Though I suppose if you haven’t read the first three books, then probably not, and that’s something you should rectify as soon as possible.

 Are you ready?

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Are you sure?

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Well, here it is! The cover of the Vortex Chronicles, Book 4, Sovereign Sacrifice!

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I just love it! I love how badass Vi looks…and I won’t spoil who the other woman is – you’re just going to have to read the books. Telling you could potentially ruin the ending of Failed Future and I’m not going to be the one to deprive you of the shock that comes with reading the ending.

Now for all the *other* important information, even though you definitely came here to see the cover, but you’ll want to know this stuff.

Pre-Order Link:  http://viewbook.at/VortexChronicles

Note…It is only available through Amazon. But if you have a nook or kobo you can purchase through Amazon, email Elise proof of purchase to Elise.Kova.Author@gmail.com, and then she’ll send a personalized “read anywhere” link to you!

Giveaway Link:  http://elisekova.com/2019-penned-con-giveaway/

The giveaway is for 10 signed books Elise got at Penned Con 2019. Of which, VORTEX VISIONS (Air Awakens: Vortex Chronicles, #1) is one! This giveaway is open internationally to 18+ readers and ends October 6, 2019.

Genres:  Young Adult, Epic Fantasy, Sword & Sorcery, Fantasy Romance, Coming of Age

Also, make sure you add Sovereign Sacrifice (and the other books in the series) on Goodreads!

As a final note, I want to thank Elise for allowing me to be a part of this once again. I absolutely love helping to promote these books and any of her works. I do believe that everyone should read them and my hope is that I convince at least one person to pick up these books and give them a chance. So, thank you so much Elise for letting me help spread the hype and confessing my love for these characters and your books. It means so much.