Spinning Starlight

by R.C. Lewis

Cover Beauty Score: 8 out of 10
Goodreads Score: 2 out of 5

Plot Blurb: Liddi Jantzen is a teenager born into the fame of her tech tycoon parents, with eight older brothers who are all tech prodigies as well. When her brothers are trapped in the hyper-dimensional space between places during a portal jump, Liddi discovers it is no accident at all and her voice is taken from her to keep her silent. Sent to a stranger planet she never knew existed, she is dependent on the kindness of Tiav, a native of that planet, to help her navigate the political and religious tensions that exist there and find a way to save her brothers.

My Reaction: I feel really bad giving this book the rating I did. R.C. Lewis is really a great writer, but with this one the plot just was so flat that I couldn't handle it. If I hadn't purchased this one (the cover is admittedly beautiful. Not as beautiful as Stitching Snow, but still pretty!), it would probably have been a DNR for me.

So where did it take a wrong turn? This is a sci-fi retelling of the Swan Brothers fairy tale, which is a personal favorite of mine. I feel like Lewis was really ambitious in taking this story and expecting to be able to weave it into something that would please a YA fan. The complexities of this fairy tale are difficult to cover, even within the confines of an extremely long and drawn out traditional fantasy. There was simply too much ground to cover and not enough time to get us there.

To begin with, we don't ever meet the brothers until they're already missing. I feel like this was probably THE biggest mistake right here. Although Lewis gives us some cookie crumbs of flashbacks throughout, we are never emotionally invested in the fact that they are gone from Liddi's life. Why should I care about brothers that I don't know? It would have been well worth it to have included a chapter or two setting the scene for us to love them and understand Liddi's relationship with her brothers.

And of course, this set up the whole story to feel less than authentic for me. If I don't understand Liddi's stakes, then why should I care about her story?

And let's get to Tiav. Yeah, he's pretty amazing. Pretty much TOO amazing, if you ask me. I know that in this fairy tale her man is supposed to be good and trusting and able to stand by her side even despite the fact it seems like she's betraying him, but there was no intrigue here. Liddi never went through any hardships before she met Tiav who offered her sanctuary, so his character ended up seeming flat instead of necessary for her growth and healing.

There are a lot of things that went wrong here, and none of them were Lewis' technical writing. She has talent, and I just wish the plot on this one had been better. Much like with Stitching Snow, I felt the climax was too much, too soon. Not enough build up to the arch resolution, not enough confrontation to suit the gravity of Liddi's situation.

And don't even get me started on the strange ending. I mean, I can see where Lewis was going, but it could have benefited from some serious plot editing.

And my search for more sci-fi YA/NA continues...
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Cold-Hearted Rake

by Lisa Kleypas

Cover Beauty Score: 6 out of 10
Goodreads Score: 2 out of 5

Plot Blurb: Devon inherits an earldom after his hot tempered cousin's untimely death and finds himself saddled with mountains of debt and responsibility he never imagined falling into his hands. Not to mention his cousin's two sisters and his widow, Kathleen, whom he clashes with instantly. They don't want to deal with one another, but in order to settle the affairs of the inheritance, Devon and Kathleen are thrown together and try desperately to fight the attraction between them.

My Reaction: If you haven't read Kleypas yet, for God's sake don't start with this one!

Man oh man... Lisa Kleypas hasn't written a historical romance in ages. She was probably the first historical romance author that I just fell completely in love with. I literally have every single one of her books and I adore each of them, s you can imagine how excited I was to read this little beauty. But since it has been so long since she's dabble in the historical genre, I can understand why she's probably a bit rusty. I feel almost like I'm betraying her by giving this book 2 stars, but I honestly felt like it was just "ok."

Let's start with the positives - Kleypas is a master of providing us with a look into the historical world without losing interest with stuffy descriptions, actions, and dialogue. As always, her writing flows beautifully and the story moves along with realistic feeling, the interactions between the characters coming alive as you digest each scene.

So where did it fall flat for me? The individual growth of the two main characters really didn't go anywhere. I mean, they did - by all accounts on paper they changed dramatically. But we never really got to see it. Kleypas created this character of a wild bachelor that shirks responsibility, but Devon was never really irresponsible. Quite the opposite. And he is thrown into Kathleen's life so quickly, forcing the intimacy between them in the most strange way seemingly moments after meeting. There was no mutual growth of familiarity.

And don't even get me started on Kathleen and her "no crying" thing - only to have her turn around and sob not five minutes after confessing that she "doesn't cry." It felt contrived and terribly unauthentic.

Now the side stories are where this book showed me the Kleypas I know and love. Devon's brother was an amazing example with this one... I was turning the pages trying to get more of his story to see where his character would go since he was so interesting. And then we had the Rhys and Helen story blossom so beautifully - as soon as this little tidbit was thrown in there I was flipping through pages to see where they would go. Original, whimsical, and touching, I just knew that this was the story I wanted to read. The story I expected from my fave romance author. Am I a little bummed I have to wait for book #2 for them? Yes, but at least they get their own feature length book!

So long story short - this book was NOT what I am used to with Kleypas. However, I won't lose hope because I get the feeling she has some great ones lined up for this series. Maybe she was so excited about those that she lost sight of this story. That's okay though... I'm a fan for life here so she'll definitely get a second chance.
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Daughter of Smoke and Bone

by Lani Taylor

Cover Beauty Score: 4 out of 10
Goodreads Score: 3 out of 5

Plot Blurb: Karou is a girl who lives in Prague, loves art, and has a secret family of demons. Running errands for her unconventional demonic family (really - they're demons) all over the world is sometimes dangerous, but never boring. She finds teeth from around the globe and traffics the magic they hold for her adoptive family, bringing the contraband to the alternate dimension where her family lives. But things change when an even more dangerous (not to mention good looking) stranger spots her on one of her missions, things begin to fall apart and Karou finally learns why a part of her has felt missing her entire life.

My Reaction: Well this book came incredibly highly recommended - I feel like every blog and reviewer with similar taste as mine has sung the praises of Lani Taylor for well over a year. And I bought this book a long time ago because of that. It's just been sitting on my shelf, waiting to be read since then.

And it was good! Great, even... I absolutely loved the character of Karou. She was fiercely independent and self sufficient. Blue hair, tattoos, and martial arts training? Now that's my kind of heroine! She didn't take shit from anybody and she certainly knew how to treat her cheating sleazy ex boyfriend. Karou is an intriguing chick - a sort personality that feels like a goth hipster Buffy Summers.

Ad then we have Akiva, the brooding and sexy angel that swoops out of the skies and into Karou's life with flaming wings and hard core brooding stares. Although he initially sets out to kill Karou, we all know the best relationships start with attempted assassinations. He has an immediate fascination with Karou, despite obviously having a tortured past. His character is established as complex and lengthy in a way that Karou is oblivious to. He knows more about her adoptive demon family than she seems to, which is intriguing in itself.

The story flows well, filling out with great dialogue and interesting characters. As soon as we're introduced to Karou's family that resides in a sort of alternate dimension, the world building is phenomenal. We get a glimpse at these creatures and it feels right away like a Hellboy family - dark and weird and loving in its own way. Brimstone was an absolutely fabulous creature, well described and infinitely complex for Karou's father figure.

And then things get a little weirder. Not in a horrible way, but without mentioning any spoilers, Karou learns the truth about who she is and why her family keeps secrets from her that this new sexy Akiva seems to know. And we have to abandon everything we thought Karou was, somewhat abandoning her story completely and learning a completely new one.

This is where it lost me, really. I adored Karou so much that I didn't want to read about a life without her, even if it was still her. She lost her fire. In fleshing out her history, Taylor seems to completely neglect the main character we have come to know and love. And in her place, we get a sort of lack luster sappy romantic love story with not much substance at all. A mythical Romeo and Juliet adaptation that honestly felt like it could have been written by a middle schooler.

Where was my fiery blue haired martial arts expert who likes to draw nudes at school one day and run around on missions trying not to get shot at the next? I wanted Karou back! Too much romantic sap and not enough ass kicking!

Will I read the second one? Probably. But just in the hope that Taylor will be able to erase the entire second half of this book and give me Karou back to read. Should you pick this one up? Probably. It's entertaining, if nothing else. The writing itself is superb - another great author in the making here. Let's just hope book 2 has more action and adventure and less face sucking and romantic destiny.
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A Court of Thorns and Roses

by Sarah J. Maas

Cover Beauty Score: 8 out of 10
Goodreads Score: 5 out of 5

Plot Blurb: Feyre learned to become a huntress out of necessity when her family fell into poverty at a young age. When she kills a wolf during a desperate winter, a monstrous faerie from a magical land comes across the border into human territory to claim her as just compensation for the murder of his friend. Feyre soon learns that the beast is Tamlin, a High Lord of the faerie court and his estate and lands hold even more terrible things than himself. Feyre is drawn into their world and begins to see that the faeries may not be all terrible, least of all Tamlin. And there are larger forces at work that threaten to destroy both of their worlds.

My Reaction: Dude. Where did that come from?! My mind is still reeling over this one. I mean, I've never had a book completely turn around for me the way that this one did. The first half of this thing, I was dragging. It felt like I was just reading Throne of Glass (read that review here) all over again. Typical warrior chick gets pointlessly thrown into something weird - we find out she's not as badass as she should be - she has to choose between two dudes - there's a lot of fake-y emotions - blah blah blah... but NO! Right at that halfway mark I realize that the arc we were building to is really not the main arc at all! Well done, Maas, well done.

So let's talk about our main character - Feyre. Despite spending the first few chapters trying to figure out if it was pronounced Fay-er or Fay-ruh, I was pretty into her character from the start. She's ballsy and knows how to fend for herself. Despite being the youngest sister in her family, she's had to provide for everybody since her good-for-nothing dad lost all their money. That was a little cheese ball, not gonna lie. And then we hop right into this weird stuff when Tamlin takes her to his lands. She like immediately loses her fire and becomes all weird and submissive, I felt. There should have been more resistance. If she hated faeries enough to kill one of them (the wolf), then why would she have just been all lah-tee-dah about getting abducted by one? I just feel like the story could have really used some better character background for her... and the current armistice with the faerie world should have been established a little better.

In short - things got off to a rocky start. The whole love story between Fayre and Tamlin felt rushed to me. The connection between them just wasn't there... I didn't feel their fire, really. But as soon as it became apparent to me where the real arc was going to lead, things kind of clicked into place. Like ohhhhh - Maas was trying to get to THIS part. I could 100% tell that she wanted to write Feyre's kick ass story. That's where the meat of this book was.

And don't even get me started on Rhysand. I mean is that one yummy piece of other worldly demon, or what? I mean, sure... Tamlin is Feyre's soul mate, whatever. He's all good and noble and that whole pagan orgy sex ritual thing certainly didn't hurt his appeal, but Rhysand's characterization in this book just blew Tamlin straight out of the water. The minute he came into the page, I was itching to read more of  him. And the scenes Under the Mountain certainly didn't dissapoint. But of course, we all know I'm a sucker for an anti-hero (could this story be any more Thor-Loki?).

And the ending was well thought out and plotted - satisfactory and yet with enough loose ends to really get me salivating for the next one in the series. With how Freye's soul is shattered a bit by her trials, I can really see the potential for a lot of great emotional conflict in the next one, not to mention some serious butt kicking because of a certain something that happened (spoilers!).

Not really sure this book can be considered YA, though. Definitely should be firmly settled in the New Adult category. For anyone who says they don't like romance novels - let's get real. This definitely had some steamy scenes in it. I've literally read romance novels with less sex. One things for certain; older heroines (I mean, should 19 really be considered an "older heroine?!") get to have a lot more fun, if you know what I mean (skip to chapter 21 &27)!

So the real revelation here is that maybe I'm not so pissed off at love triangles. Ok ok... so for Freye there's not much of a choice, really. But I get the feeling book two in the series will present some more complex challenges for her... a reader can only hope!
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Daughter of the Forest

by Juliet Marillier

Cover Beauty Score: 5 out of 10
Goodreads Score: 4 out of 5

Plot Blurb: Sorcha is a young girl who lives in medieval Ireland, during a time when magic and the Fae Folk are still alive and well for the people of Erin. As the seventh daughter of a seventh son, she has always felt a disappointment, although she finds solace in her connection with the spirits of the earth and in her talents as a healer. When her father remarries a mysterious and evil woman, Sorcha and her six brothers are targeted by the woman and she turns all six brothers into swans. Sorcha is told by the Fae that in order to break this curse, she must complete seemingly impossible tasks and travel a path that will be the most difficult of them all.

My Reaction: This book, though. I can't even begin to describe the emotional roller coaster of this thing. I read this book because I thought it was in the YA category, although as I began to read I realized this was really a more classical fantasy than anything else. Despite Sorcha's initial age of 14, the book spans across 4-5 years so she the reader is able to see her mature and grow.

Speaking of growth, let's talk about the character development in this one. Out of this world. There is not a character who does not alter irrevocably throughout this tale. Marillier does an excellent job of plotting out the ways her characters will change on their journeys, particularly Sorcha. Once sheltered and naive, she is forced out of her comfort zone in the worst way imaginable and given some of the most horrendous hurdles to cross. My heart would break for her with each new challenge she faced. As she was given the task of remaining mute until her other tasks were complete, there were parts where as the reader I felt as though I should be just as silent. Her struggles transferred to me, as though I could help her somehow from my end.

That, my friends, is good writing.

And in regards to the writing as a whole, it was excellently done. Marillier obviously knows what she's doing with her words, weaving a tale that felt as reverent as the original Grimm stories. The writing flowed well with great dialogue, although due to the nature of Sorcha's task, there was understandably a lot of internal monologue. The nature of classic fantasy is that the story is long and in depth, which at times I found difficult to get through. The suspense was too much for me to remain patient enough to read a four page description of something. It was torture!

But should we touch on the love triangle here? We all know I despise love triangles... I was not a big fan of the one here, honestly. I didn't see it coming, and once our second hero Red was introduced, I knew he had to be the true choice for Sorcha. Simon would have been good for her, before her trials, but they grew in ways that took them away from their path together. This part was, perhaps, the most difficult for me. I did not feel as though Simon was given enough of a story - enough closure.

So we come to the part where I say this was a great book. However, upon finishing it I am reminded why I stay away from traditional fantasy. I read books to live in worlds that I would enjoy living in. The world in which Sorcha inhabits was dark and difficult and devoid of much laughter. I appreciate her journey and am still in awe of the tribulations she was forced to face, but I would not want to share this journey with her. Ever.

And so I will move on to something happier with my next book choice. Preferably something with less death. And heartache. And general emo-ness.
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Halfway Point Blues

“Hitting that halfway point and don't know where to go next? We've all been there. This is when it gets hard, when you feel like giving up. I have one word for you: Don't. Don't stop. Keep writing. Yeah, the words might not be great, but guess what? You can go back and fix it. You're so close, don't stop now!” — Monica Murphy

Man it has been hard for me to get my story moving for a few months. I'll be honest, I haven't really written much of anything. My story is just sitting out there - in limbo. My poor characters are dying to have their journeys completed, but I'm too scared or blocked or whatever to keep going on them. I definitely needed to read this quote today. 

Why does the story get to difficult at the halfway point? Getting out of that slump is one of the most difficult things about completing a book. Seriously. I totally think you just have to push through it, even if you think the writing you've done is crap. You really can just go back and fix it later - that's the whole purpose of edits! 

So what do you think? Are you a writer, or aren't you? Yeah - get out there and get your word count, bitch! 
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An Offer From A Gentleman

by Julia Quinn

Cover Beauty Score: 3 out of 10
Goodreads Score: 3 out of 5

Plot Blurb: Sophie Beckett is the bastard of a wealthy English lord who is left at the hands of her merciless stepmother when her duty bound sire dies of a weak heart. Years later, Sophie gets the chance to attend a fabulous masquerade among the debutantes and rogues of the ton - meeting the unforgettable Benedict Bridgerton who gives her a kiss she'll never forget. But it sets into motion events that will change her life forever.

My Reaction: This was a cute little retelling of Cinderella - a light romance novel that was a bit like candy. It was sweet and I knew what I was getting into and it was well made, but it didn't really move me or stick with me particularly. Sophie is a pretty courageous heroine and she was enjoyable to read, although I would say that her spirit deflated a bit towards the end of the story. I got a little fed up with how dramatic the characters were trying to make their situations when I didn't really feel like there was much to complain about. If I'm going to keep a romance novel on my bookshelf, that thing had better rip apart my soul, and unfortunately this one just didn't really live up to that standard.

Which is not to say that it wasn't fun - because it definitely was! It was a little light thing that was easy and enjoyable and a good way to spend a road trip. I particularly enjoyed the little intro to each chapter of a gossip columnist writing about the goings on of all the famous echelon in the ton. I must have read another in this series a long time ago by Julia Quinn, because I swear this intro is familiar to me. It was rather charming, I have to say.

Speaking of charming, the Bridgerton family is just adorable in this one. This "family finds love" series reminds me a lot of the Mallory family as written by Johanna Lindsay, and who doesn't love the Mallorys?! (If you haven't read that series, shame on you! Google that shit right now!).

So overall, enjoyable and probably worth the $5 I spent on it, but not really one I'd be interested in picking up again. This one is gonna go to Goodwill rather than take up valuable space on the bookshelves. Quinn is a great writer, though - she'll always be a firm choice for me to give a chance on a story!
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Stolen Songbird

by Danielle L Jensen

Cover Beauty Score: 5 out of 10
Goodreads Score: 5 out of 5

Plot Blurb: Cecile de Troyes lives a simple country life, training to be a singer and hopefully join her mother one day in the big city and become as famous performer. On the eve of her 17th birthday, she is kidnapped and taken beneath the mountain that overlooks her valley to be traded to the trolls that have been secretly residing in the dark for hundreds of years. And to make matters worse, they engage her to the troll prince named Tristan and expect her to fulfill a prophecy to free them. She learns that there is more to the trolls than scary nightmares, and she is swiftly drawn into the political games and intrigue of the court to which she now belongs.  

My Reaction: May I just start out by saying that this book is far and away my favorite read in a LONG time. I became so immersed in this one. The writing was great - easy to read and flowed perfectly with some nice imagery and above all, amazing dialogue. There is nothing better than a book where the dialogue just flies off the page! And Jensen has this down... I mean to tell you... the characters here come alive as soon as you hear them speak to one another in a way that is entrancing.

So let's move on to the characters themselves. I found Cecile wonderfully complex. Normally I am incredibly put off by singers in books - I think it is hard to translate a person with an extra-gifted talent like this in writing. It comes off as needless and silly - but somehow Jensen seemed to make it work. I didn't get pissed at Cecile for her talent, because it was inserted at the right times and in the right placed. And how clever of her to title the book songbird? When it's songbirds who used to warn miners when to go above ground and here we have Cecile whom everyone believes will be their key to freedom above ground... see what she did there? Nice touch, Ms. Jensen.

But I digress. Cecile is as normal as you or I. She is a normal girl that wants normal things and has cool dreams that she hopes to see through. When she's put in a horrible situation, she reacts in much the same way I would. She tries to escape and reluctantly falls in love with this troll prince that is as equally complex. Tristan is a strong character that knows what he wants and doesn't plan to let her get in the way of his plans. But they both grow and change throughout the novel. So much so that their actions from the beginning to the end of the novel are incredibly different. They felt incredibly human to me. Their romance is incredibly real, in many ways.

Can we talk a moment about the romantic notion of bonding in this book? To share your innate feelings with the person you marry? I practically giggled aloud when I read that on the page, knowing that when two people pretend to hate each other, but can feel the truth of things, it was bound to get interesting. And Holy God did I nearly have a meltdown on more than one occasion. I may or may not have thrown my fancy Bose headphones at the wall (causing them to burst apart into several pieces, but that's a different story. Pretty sure my husband thinks I'm crazy now).

Now, I'm not stupid. I know there are elements of cheese in this one. But sometimes a little cliche is just what you need to get a story really going. You have to sprinkle that shit in there like it's flakes of gold. Too much and you'll ruin it, but just enough makes it sparkle and shine. Were there some overreactions? Sure. Were there some predictable makeup scenes? Absolutely. Was this book almost like a romance novel in the guise of a fantasy? You bet your blog-reading ass it was! And I loved every damn minute of it!

And that ending!!! Omg I was sobbing for about 20 minute. I definitely feel like I cried myself to sleep. But it wasn't horrible - don't let the crying throw you off! Anybody that knows me knows that I don't do ridiculous endings (aka when everyone dies). Unless you're Shakespeare, don't come at me with a story where the main character dies. I'm not having any of it. This was more of a "whyyyyy" crying with a little bit of "holy hell I need to read the next one" thrown in there.

So should you read this one? Have you even been paying attention?!? OF COURSE YOU SHOULD! If you haven't already, go pick this one up, or order it from Amazon, or check it out from your library... if you and I have similar taste in books and you haven't read this one, then you should do yourself a favor. Trust me. Yes, it's that good.
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by Meg Cabot

Cover Beauty Score: 8 out of 10
Goodreads Score: 4 out of 5

Plot Blurb: Meena Harper is a writer for a daytime soap opera that is trying to compete with its rival network who has begun writing about vampires. As luck would have it, Meena meets a dreamy guy from Transylvania that just happens to be a prince! Thinking he'll be perfect inspiration for her show's need to compete with some fictional vampires of their own, Meena doesn't hesitate to go out with him - falling head over heels for this dreamboat in the process. But what she soon realizes is there's something fishy about Lucien... and maybe vampires aren't as fictional as she thought. Did I mention Meena can see when people will die? Yeah. There's that, too. 

My Reaction:  Every time I pick up a book by Meg Cabot, it's like coming home. Her writing makes me feel like I did when I was young (er?)... independent and self sufficient and able to handle my own craziness and love it. Her writing has me laughing right from the start, her dry humor echoing the ridiculous thoughts that run through my own head sometimes. I have to say, this book was a fun way to spend a couple of days.

If you're looking for serious, this book isn't for you. It's a fun action adventure vampire romp that pokes fun at the ridiculousness of the Twilight saga. Seriously... Cabot reminds us what should be sexy about vampires and gives it to us in spades with Lucien. Meena isn't afraid to be a little feminine - she draws power from the fact that she enjoys having her man cherish her a little. And if he gets a little Transylvanian on her and tries to overstep his bounds, she is quick to tell him to buzz off.

Not sure how I felt about the bit of triangle here... although I really didn't feel like it was a well established triangle. It's pretty obvious to me that Lucien and Meena are meant to be together. Despite the events in the book, I feel like what they have is the real deal. Meena's brother going all "vampire killer" was a little weird. If anything, I felt the way he treated Meena was the real aspect of masogynistic assholeness. Like just because she was a girl they completely ignored her opinions.

In true Meg Cabot style, this book came together with a big dramatic event (there may or may not have been a dragon) and I really enjoyed it! It came down quickly and left us on a bit of cliff hanger that will probably have me picking up the sequel in a few months.

Overall, not Cabot's absolute best, but still pretty damn enjoyable! Need a fun pick-me-up option? Like sexy dark brooding heroes and intelligent but slightly scatter-brained heroines? This one is for you!
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The Kiss of Deception

by Mary E. Pearson

Cover Beauty Score: 5 out of 10
Goodreads Score: 2 out of 5

Plot Blurb: Princess Lia can't stomach the thought of marrying some old prince she's never met to whom her parents have sold her off to, even if it would mean uniting their two kingdoms against dangerous forces beyond their borders. So on the morning of her wedding day, Lia flees the castle with her trusty handmaiden to start a new life in the faraway shipping town on the coast, planning to live out her life as a normal girl. Two handsome dudes show up after a while and Lia begins to fall for both of them without knowing that one is the prince she left at the altar, and the other is an assassin sent to kill her. As much as she wants to live a plain life, she is dragged back into the foray soon enough.

My Reaction: As much as I hate to admit it, this book was a DNF for me. I was so encouraged with the book - it started out fabulous and I really loved the character of Lia. The world building was awesome, with rich traditions filling out Lia's kingdom and her lifestyle. I really adore a well built background for a fantasy novel. The writing was excellent - succinct and descriptive and easy to read quickly... there's really not much I can complain about there. It was great!

So it went south for me as soon as the assassin and the prince show up. Ugh... I think you know how much I loathe love triangles. This book was one big fat triangle that didn't have any qualms about shoving the thing down the reader's throat. There's not even any pretense at concealing this... the guys walk into her line of sight at the exact same moment. One second Lia is swooning over the prince's eyes, and the next her stomach is flipping over the assassin's smile. Like. At the same time. There was a point in the middle where I thought, wait... is this a story about poly-amorous relationships? They all seemed to be pretty into one another... Lia certainly was into both at the same time.

And while I was trying to get over this double-boy scenario, Lia just kept on complaining. And I began to realize... wait, this chick is pretty selfish. Running away from her kingdom and basically dooming everybody to war because she's scared of a little unhappiness? Ugh. And now she wants to sleep with two dudes at once? Bleh.

Since I checked this one out on my kindle (thankfully I didn't buy it!), I said sayonara and stopped it about the time she was going to pick blueberries and her boy toys were both following her in secret to drool over the way she was lowering herself to the status of a peasant.

A valiant attempt, Pearson... I'll be happy to try another of your stories if you can master the strong woman characterization. But this one, unfortunately, just didn't speak to me.
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