The Sight by Chloe Neill

26878915Rating: 3 stars

Series: Devil’s Isle #2

Meh. The first one was better. I’m not sold on this series yet. A lot less happened in this than in the last one. It was boring. The focus of this was on a zealot who was rousing hate among people in the zone. He was a stereotypical bad guy. The plot highlighted how much hate there was for paranormals, but did nothing to enrich my knowledge of the world.

I’m not in love with the characters. The side characters need some serious work. I don’t care about any of them. If any of them died in one of their skirmishes, it wouldn’t matter. None of them get enough page time to really get to know them. Claire is alright but doesn’t stand out among the many other UF heroines. Liam is my favorite character. His reluctance to be with Claire is aggravating especially since the reason for it is weak.

Claire and Liam clearly like each other. Their situations put them at slight odds. It didn’t have much of an impact but jealousy was used to show how much Liam cared for Claire. It wasn’t a love triangle, but I’d prefer them to work out their issues without extra drama.

The end annoyed me. It wasn’t a cliffhanger but a big issue was left open ended. Chances are it’s one of those things that will be resolved in the next book. It felt like drama for the sake of drama. I don’t like that. I’m going to read the next one anyway.

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The Veil by Chloe Neill

21415815Rating: 3.5 stars

Series: Devil’s Isle #1

It was much better than I thought it would be, but I admittedly went into it with low expectations. After becoming disillusioned with the Chicagoland Vampires series, I was hesitant to read this. This series is nothing like that one, which is a good thing. It’s not as fun and has less dynamic characters. This is truly for adults. CLV was labeled as an adult read but read like YA.

The veil separated the fae and human worlds. The fae broke through 7 years earlier and attacked humans. The veil was closed and some of the fae were left behind. People thought they were evil and locked them away in Devil’s Isle. When the veil broke down, some people realized they were able to absorb magic. They are called sensitives. The downfall of this is that magic eventually destroys them and turns them into mindless wraiths.

Claire was a sensitive. She hid her barely used ability from everyone. Being locked away on Devil’s Isle was her greatest fear. One night she was forced to use her magic in public to defend herself. The bounty hunter, Liam, noticed. He was sympathetic to sensitives although it was his job to turn them in.

Claire was an alright main character. A little reckless at times but not TSTL. By the end of the book I was getting the vibe that she was special but not annoyingly so. Hopefully that doesn’t change as the series goes on. She was oblivious to the world around her in many ways, blind to many truths that would have been revealed with some thought of her own instead of believing propaganda.

Liam was serious minded and mysterious. He seems honorable but might not be completely trustworthy. The guy does have secrets. He and Claire made a good couple. There is an obstacle keeping them apart, but it’s a minor one.

There were weak points in the world building. I liked the world that was created with the war torn New Orleans. Devil’s Isle was fascinating until it was revealed what it was really like. Yes it was a prison but not the dismal, cruel place it was initially portrayed to be. All the people there were treated fairly well. Most of it was a normal neighborhood. The paranormals weren’t allowed to leave but anyone else could come and go. It didn’t seem like much of a threat. It’s quite shocking that more people hadn’t escaped.

Magical monitors were placed all over the city. How they worked wasn’t clear but that’s irrelevant. It was mentioned over and over again that anyone who could use magic needed to be careful because of the constant observation. The monitors never seemed to pick up anything. Magic was used often, and not once did an alarm go off. What’s the point of having them if they are useless? They wouldn’t be a threat because anyone with magic would know they are worthless.

Wraiths were made by sensitives being consumed by too much magic. There was no solid defense against becoming a wraith. Initially it appeared to be an unavoidable fate worse than death. There were two instances where Claire being special annoyed me, where she did what seemed to be impossible. I’m definitely getting the feeling that there is more than meets the eye with her.

It was a decent start to the series. I didn’t love it. It definitely was not a page turner, but I do plan on reading the rest of the series. I’m curious to see where it goes.

Best Books of 2017

Happy almost New Year everyone! It’s a fitting way to end the year with a list of my favorite books that were released this year. Most of the books I read this were less than noteworthy. There were a few that stood out as ones I’ll think of often.

Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor

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My favorite book of the year! It was not perfect, but I absolutely loved the way it showed that it is dangerous to make assumptions and to judge others. Read my review here.

Magic for Nothing by Seanan McGuire

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The best book in the series yet, and the first one featuring Antimony as a MC. I was surprised to like this as much as I did. The glimpses of Antimony from the other books didn’t make me look forward to being in her head. It all worked out for the best though. Read my review here.

The Soul Eater series by Pippa DaCosta

The last three books in the series were released this year, and what a wild ride it was! It’s a blend of fantasy and urban fantasy. It’s not often that Egyptian mythology is featured in this type of story. It was great and completely original. All three received 5 stars from me. Read my reviews here and here.

Caraval by Stephanie Garber

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I’m not usually a fan of books with carnival themes, but this worked for me. I devoured this in three and a half hours. It was that damn good! Read my review here.

The Last Magician by Lisa Maxwell

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The best book no one is reading. This had a few surprises, and it was YA that wasn’t obnoxious. I’m hoping for a sequel. Read my review here.

The Brightest Fell by Seanan McGuire

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As you may have noticed, I’m a bit of a Seanan McGuire fangirl. This is my favorite series ever! If you haven’t read it, please check it out. If you don’t like the first few books, keep reading. I promise it gets much better. Read my review here.

Double or Nothing by Craig Schaefer

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It’s dark UF with a slower pace. Nonetheless it is compelling read. I love this series! It always manages to surprise me with the way Daniel Faust gets himself out of impossible situations. Read my review here.

The Hidden Legacy series by Ilona Andrews

Ignore the cheesy covers. This series is amazing! It’s UF, not romance. I waited a long time for these to be released, and they did not disappoint. Read my reviews here and here. I went to a book signing of theirs this summer. ICYMI here is the post I wrote about it.

The Awakening by Amanda Stevens

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I loved this series! It’s PNR with gothic mysteries. Definitely worth the read. Read my review here.

What were your favorite books from this year?

The Brightest Fell by Seanan McGuire

23383896Rating: 4.5 stars

Series: Toby Daye #11

Finally Amandine made an appearance!!! I had been waiting so long for this. It certainly wasn’t what I was expecting. Amandine is formidable woman. She makes the Luidaeg look sweet and sane, and she’s known as the sea witch. I have the feeling this book only showed one side of her personality. As someone who loves psychology, I’m curious to see what makes her tick and why exactly she feels the way she does about Toby. I think there’s a lot more to it than meets the eye.

Since these books are becoming increasingly character driven, I can’t talk about much in regards to the characters because there would be major spoilers. One thing that made this book very different from the others was the lack of Toby’s usual sidekicks. Quentin was around but not highly impactful on the plot. The other main character was someone from Toby’s past who she detests. I would love to say more, but I was absolutely shocked at how that played out. It was this forced relationship that made the book great.

Amandine forced Toby’s hand and made her look for her long lost sister. In the century or so that she had been missing no one could find her and some incredibly powerful people looked. I like how the whole plot unraveled. The thing I didn’t like was that it was too convenient that Toby was the only person alive with the right abilities to possibly make it happen. The end game of the series has finally been laid out. Based on the few hints that were dropped, it’s looking grim. After all the title of the final book is When Sorrows Come.

Thank you so much to DAW and Netgalley for giving me an ARC in exchange for an honest review!!!

Ilona Andrews and Jeaniene Frost Book Signing!

Dust off Your MacHalo

I went to the Ilona Andrews and Jeaniene Frost book signing on July 27th. The three of them are awesome people! It was a great experience. Gordon and Ilona are hilarious. They had the crowd laughing the entire time. Between being awestruck and my natural introvert tendencies I had no clue what to say to them when I was getting my books signed. They were cool as hell so it didn’t matter.

IA and JFThey were kind enough to sign more than one copy of a book. I got Jeaniene Frost to sign Halfway to the Grave. I was damn lucky I had that. Most of the Jeaniene Frost books I own are ebooks. I didn’t want to go to a signing and not get a book signed by her. She gave me a cool bookmark advertising the Night Huntress series!

20170729_002729Gordon and Ilona signed the hardcover copy of Wildfire I bought…

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Ride the Storm by Karen Chance

25962913-_uy200_Rating: 4.5 stars

Series: Cassie Palmer #8

Three things happened that I have been desperately hoping would happen since book 4, and it was about damn time. I would love to discuss those things in detail, but it would give away some major plot points. I was beginning to lose my faith and thought that some of these issues would be dragged out forever, but good things come to those who wait!

I’ve got to be honest the first half was aggravating and too chaotic without any real progress being made. Cassie was time jumping from one place to the next and dealing with many issues. All of those issues were the same ones from the last book. I really didn’t think it was necessary for two books to be devoted to Pritkin’s sojourn in the past.

The other pythias were irritating. They didn’t add much to the story and were a constant distraction causing the resolution to Pritkin’s situation to take too long. Cassie never had formal training with her pythia powers, but shouldn’t she be more powerful than the average pythia? One parent was a goddess and the other was a necromancer. She should be a badass from that alone. Throwing pythia powers into the mix should make her extremely powerful. Despite her ability to do things others can’t, it always seems like other pythias can overtake her too easily.

Finally the time came for Cassie and Mircea to have a talk. Cassie found out something about him, and he was forced to explain the situation. It turned out much better than I thought it would have. He revealed much more than I would have expected. Well it turns out what I always thought about him was true.

The end was great! The final showdown with Ares happened. The way that got settled was completely unexpected and fantastic! The best part was that Cassie finally made a choice, and it was the one I wanted her to make. No more love triangle drama, hopefully anyway. The other guy isn’t going let Cassie go easily. There was a cliffhanger at the end, but it was one I can deal with.

Thanks so much to Netgalley for giving me this in exchange for an honest review!