Book Spotlight: Poison and Honey (Dark and Otherworldly #1) by Kristen Brand

Book Spotlight: Poison and Honey (Dark and Otherworldly #1) by Kristen Brand

Poison and Honey (Dark and Otherworldly #1)
Published July 15th 2020
136 pages

Leigh Morgan has known that magic existed ever since an unearthly monster abducted her sister. It’s why she’s in Otherworld now, posing as a servant in its dark, decadent palace. She’s gathering intelligence and working with a small band of allies to bring down the Others and free their human captives. Her mission depends on blending in, so the last thing she wants is to attract the attention of a cunning prince.

Dredarion Rath wants one thing: to disgrace his older brother and prove himself the worthier heir to the throne. And out of all the servants in the palace, he chooses Leigh to help him. Just her luck.

Now Leigh has to keep her work a secret from a bewitching man who sees right through her–and who’s not nearly as cold and inhuman as he seems. She can’t screw this up, or the humans forced into servitude will never go home. But juggling two conspiracies at once, it’s only a matter of time before it all comes crashing down, and the man she’s falling for has her executed for her betrayal…

Find out more about Kristen and her books on Twitter and on her Website.

Book Spotlight: Hiss (The Unmagic Trilogy #1) by Amaya Ash

Book Spotlight: Hiss (The Unmagic Trilogy #1) by Amaya Ash

In Arilloa, the royal family uses their magic to win the respect of the ordinary populace. But Leonie, a princess and second in line to the throne, has a terrible secret: she’s barely magic at all. The only person to ever find out her secret is Armand, a boy training to become a Knifecloak, one of the elite castle guards.

Leonie’s younger brother Hiss, on the other hand, is a child prodigy with greater powers than anyone else in the family, capable of creating monsters out of thin air. One day Hiss goes missing and resurfaces at the head of a rebellion, using his powers to strike against the country and the crown. Monsters against soldiers, magic against normality. Leonie and Armand must find Hiss and stop him while the monster-driven war rages around them.

A Young Adult (YA) / New Adult (NA) novel with elements of both fantasy and romance.

Hiss is available for preorder on Amazon. The release day is October 1st, 2020. Be sure to add it here on Goodreads. I’ve already added Hiss to my TBR pile for future enjoyment since it sounds like a me-book. 🙂

Review: Court of Bitter Thorn (The Fae of Bitter Thorn #1) by Kay L. Moody

Review: Court of Bitter Thorn (The Fae of Bitter Thorn #1) by Kay L. Moody

Title: Court of Bitter Thorn (The Fae of Bitter Thorn #1)
Author: Kay L. Moody
Pub Date: August 18th 2020

Faerie wasn’t supposed to be real.

Tricked by a fae prince, Elora is stuck in the Faerie realm far from her young sisters who depend on her for survival. Under the terms of her bargain, she can’t go home to the mortal world until Prince Brannick becomes the next High King.

Or until he’s taken out of the running…

Sabotaging Brannick’s chance at the crown will be much faster than helping him win. The fae prince may be charming, powerful, and wickedly handsome, but that won’t stop Elora from selling his secrets to the highest bidder.

By day, she uses her master sword skills to train the prince, while ignoring her growing attraction to him. By night, she conspires with a rival king in a nearby court whose plans could destroy half of Faerie.

If she gets caught, Brannick will kill her. But what’s life without a little bit of danger?

I’ll probably read anything by Kay L. Moody at this point. I just really love her writing styling and her storytelling. I’ll admit I’m picky about fae books and who I will read fae books from but Court of Bitter Thorn was something I actually enjoyed reading. I’m looking forward to a second book to see what happens next.

Review: The Rose and the Thorn: A Beauty and the Beast Retelling by Katherine Macdonald

Review: The Rose and the Thorn: A Beauty and the Beast Retelling by Katherine Macdonald

Title: The Rose & The Thorn
Author: Katherine Macdonald
Pub Date: August 27th 2019
Pages: 455

A gripping and mesmerising retelling of a classic story, filled with romance, mystery and intrigue.

There is a pale, penetrating loneliness etched into the walls of this forgotten place. A kind of loneliness made living… is this what it feels like to be a ghost, alone in some kind of half world?

Taking shelter from a storm, Rose accidentally strays into a deserted fairy realm, and finds herself trapped there with only a mysterious talking beast for company. Although initially reluctant to befriend her strange companion, Rose quickly finds herself growing closer to him. She names him Thorn, and as the castle blossoms into a place of beauty, so too does their friendship. But something else lurks within the walls, a dark force that will stop at nothing to be free once more…

If Rose is to survive and lift the curse placed upon the castle, she will have to face her fears and conquer the nightmares that have haunted her since childhood, as well as confront the terrifying creature that stalks the shadows in the night.

A passionate retelling of a classic tale, fairy tale fantasy meets Gothic. Will have you sobbing and laughing, and truly believing in the power of true love. 

Katherine Macdonald offers a beautiful, slow burn retelling for us fairy tale fanatics to savor like a fine piece of chocolate. I, for one, can’t get enough retellings. I will read them all. I’m pleased with The Rose and the Thorn and I’m looking forward to see what else this author will release in the future.

((And, boy, was this book massive. 455 pages. The longest B&B retelling I’ve ever read.))

Review: Tree of Souls by Misty Hayes (The Blood Dagger #3)

Review: Tree of Souls by Misty Hayes (The Blood Dagger #3)

Title: Tree of Souls (The Blood Dagger #3)
Author: Misty Hayes
Pub Date: December 15th 2019
Pages: 640
Amazon| Goodreads

The first vampire.
The last Nephilim.
The end of a saga.

The epic battle between angel and vampire begins in this third installment in the Blood Dagger series. Ever since his meeting with a group of all-powerful angels calling themselves the Grigori went awry, things aren’t looking up for Corinth Taylor or for his best friend, Larna Collins. After Corinth was almost stabbed to death, Alastair Iszler, Corinth’s brother-in-arms, heroically stepped in to save Corinth’s life—thereby sacrificing his own in the process.

Larna, still reeling after losing the love of her life, has only one mission in mind: kill the vampire who tortured Corinth. Sarah. But things aren’t so cut and dry anymore when friends turn into enemies and enemies turn into friends. Trusting Gabriel Stanton, the leader of one of the most powerful vampire clans in the world, might just be enough to cause his downfall by her hands. Especially since she has the worst kind of history with him—the killing-your-father kind.

Will Corinth make it through his transition to become a vampire? Will the Grigori’s plan at world domination come into fruition? Can they pull together in time to stop the threat?

Excuse me as I wipe my runny nose and blink away the tears. I’m very emotional right now coming straight from finishing the last page.

This book . . . was EVERYTHING.

Never have I read a finale so perfect, so satisfying. It went beyond my expectations, wrapping up so nicely and still leaving room for more (a spin-off is coming–heavens, yeees).

Tree of Souls was such a roller coaster of feelings. Love, loss, faith, despair. So brilliantly beautiful. I would die for these characters–Larna, Corinth, Vinson, Leo.. I just love them all.

Read this series if you haven’t. It’s my all time favorite.

Review: Fae of the North by E. Hall

Review: Fae of the North by E. Hall

Title: Fae of the North (Court of Crown and Compass #1)
Author: E. Hall
Pub Date: December 21st 2019
Pages: 238

Four crowns to take. One curse to break.

When Kiki receives a strange note and discovers a secret about her past that impacts her future, she’s thrown into another realm that’s nothing like her life as a failed demon slayer in New York City. While seeking counsel to understand why she suddenly has wings, she meets a guy who looks like a Viking and looks at her in a way that makes her all fluttery inside.

Soren spends too much time at the tile table and infuriating the king’s guards—evidenced by the ink tainting his skin. He gave up fighting back a long time ago and is just trying to survive. The strange thing is, he can’t help but want to take flight and when he meets a beautiful stranger it’s like something inside is trying to beat its way out.

In the Northlands, trust is a foreign concept. The people are divided by fear and want, everyone is broken or does the breaking, and the ashpit consumes the rest. Desperate to help the people, Kiki and Soren find common ground to overthrow the false king and soon discover their destinies are wound tightly together.

However, with war looming, time isn’t on their side. It’s a battle Kiki and Soren can’t win on their own, but could divide them forever, and forever is what they each secretly want.

It was the cover that caught my attention first but the story and characters are making me stay along for the ride.

If you love fae books, you’ll definitely want to read this one. I’m always looking for a variety of fae stories in particular because after vampires, they’re my second favorite supernatural beings to read about. Granted, it’s usually a hit or miss because I tend to be picky. Fae of the North is a hit with me and it’s something I’d a hundred percent recommend.

I hope the bearmen make more appearances because I am intrigued.

Spotlight: The Aldergeist Witch by J.R. Snyder

Spotlight: The Aldergeist Witch by J.R. Snyder

Title: The Aldergeist Witch (Sin Eater Tales #1)
Author: J.R. Snyder
Pub Date: December 8, 2019
Pages: 32

Henk Versteeg has been missing for over two weeks after venturing into the infamous Aldergeist Forest. Villagers blame the local witch. Asher Norwood, a member of the mysterious Sin Eater guild, has been brought in to investigate.

Tasked with guiding lost spirits to the afterlife, breaking curses, and subduing dark beasts, sin eaters are society’s first line of defense against the evils that plague the world. 

Join Asher on his journey as he searches within the Aldergeist Forest and finds more than he bargained for.  

[Adding a review because I just finished reading this book.]

Now this is a perfect example of a well-written, entertaining short story. I usually don’t read a lot of short stories because I always want more than what’s given and generally there’s no continuations to look forward to.

J.R. Snyder offers something here that will be appealing to many readers of fantasy. I adored it and will be waiting to see what’s next in this series.

Plus isn’t the cover the cutest thing ever?

Fire & Frost (The Canens Chronicles #2) by Kelsie Engen

Fire & Frost (The Canens Chronicles #2) by Kelsie Engen

Title: Fire & Frost (The Canens Chronicles #2)
Author: Kelsie Engen
Pub Date: November 25th 2019
Pages: 484

She’s a princess on the run. With the weight of the entire Seven Kingdoms on her shoulders.

Crown Princess Winterberry fled her cursed homeland after escaping slavery and the ruthless assassination attempt at her own stepmother’s hands. Now in enemy lands, she doesn’t know who to trust. And finally realizing her own powerful magic, she trusts herself least of all.

Certain she brings more danger than help to those she cares about, Winterberry leaves the very ones who rescued her from her prison and travels into Ardor to seek the only allies she can think of: the King and Queen and their son. But before she can reach them, she must outrun the huntsman of Canens, her stepmother’s right-hand man who never fails to catch his prey.

Outrunning both friends and enemies, Winterberry must reach the Ardorian royal family and beg for their help. Only united with the royal families of the Seven Kingdoms can she break the Canens Curse and free the entire Seven Kingdoms from an unimaginable future.

The first book in The Canens Chronicles, Fog & Mist, was amazing, so expect nothing less than amazing within the pages of Fire & Frost. There are so many layers upon layers of secrets, magic, and danger at every turn.

My favorite characters so far are Princess Winterberry and Marcus, the Huntsman. There are many more interesting characters to root for and I can’t wait to read more about them.

2020 can’t come soon enough.

Spotlight: The Other Magic by Derrick Smythe

Spotlight: The Other Magic by Derrick Smythe

Title: The Other Magic (Passage to Dawn #1)
Author: Derrick Smythe
Pub Date: December 1st 2019
Pages: 635

Darkness stirs in a world that is ill-equipped to confront it. A prophesied king is born, but not all will benefit from his foretold conquests.

In a realm where only clerics are permitted to practice magic, Kibure, a mere slave, draws the attention of much more than just his master after wielding an unknown force in a moment of desperation. In a twist of fate, Sindri, the priestess hired to strip Kibure of his power, defies the law, revealing designs of her own. But trust is in short supply in a land ripe with deceit. This wayward pair will have to work together if they hope to evade capture at the hands of the Empire’s most potent wielders.

Halfway around the known world, Prince Aynward’s knack for discovering trouble drives him deep into conspiracies within which he does not belong. Too arrogant to accept counsel, he will have to learn the hard way that some actions have consequences that cannot be undone…

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About the Author

Derrick resides near his hometown in Upstate New York with his wife, two daughters, and their dog, Magnus. When he is not working on his next novel, he enjoys finding any and all reasons to be outdoors. Listening to audiobooks while seated upon the throne of his riding lawn mower is a favorite and when the snow falls, Derrick eagerly transitions to snow-blowing his driveway with the same dual-purpose in mind.

Derrick’s debut novel, The Other Magic, is the first installment of his Passage to Dawn series, an epic fantasy set in the World of Doréa.

Find out more about Derrick and his work on his website.