Early Review: Recreated by Colleen Houck

, by Kt Clapsadl

Recreated by Colleen Houck
Reawakened #2

Lily Young thought traveling across the globe with a reawakened sun prince was a grand adventure. Now she’s about to embark on the journey of a lifetime.

When Amon and Lily part tragically, he transports himself to the Netherworld—what mortals call hell. Tormented by the loss of his one true love, he’d rather suffer in agony during Lily’s mortal years than fulfill his duty to protect humanity.

Heartbroken, Lily seeks refuge on her grandmother’s farm. Yet she can feel Amon’s pain, and she has been having dreams—dreams of Amon continually suffering.

For before he departed, Amon gave Lily something very special, an item that connects them even though they are worlds apart. Now Lily must use this object to free him, and to free their realms from darkness and utter chaos. She will do whatever it takes.

I'm such a sucker for Egyptian lore stories, so this series is seriously my jam. While RECREATED didn't sweep me away quite as much as Reawakened did, it was a very enjoyable read. There's just something magical about the style of writing and it's so easy to get sucked right into the story. The characters are phenomenal and all incredibly three-dimensional. The world behind the story was expanded even further than in the first book, and each new element be they the location, mythology, or a character were fully fleshed out as well. It truly is impressive just how well Colleen incorporates each and every element to make them all seem so realistic and full of depth.

Despite all the new elements, characters, and depth to the world, so much of the book is spent with Lily fully at the helm/focus. While Lily is a great character, I have to admit I missed the brothers a great deal, and even when they came back into focus, they really only served to confuse things. In the first book, the romance is all sweeping and consuming and I loved every bit of it. But this time around due to circumstances I won't reveal to keep from spoiling, that romance gets questioned due to other influences. To make matters worse there's hints of a love triangle that left me scratching my head. Granted there's possibly a logical reason behind it, but I still felt it lessened the epic love between Lily and Amun that sucked me in so much in the first book.

Love triangle/romance issues aside, I thoroughly enjoyed RECREATED and am dying to get my hands on the next book in the series. Hopefully this is longer than a trilogy as only three books in this amazing world will never be enough!

(Received a copy from the publisher)

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Other Reviews:
     Happy Indulgence
     Books & Predjudice

Previous Books:
     1. Reawakened

Early Review: Where the Wild Things Bite by Molly Harper

, by Kt Clapsadl

Where the Wild Things Bite by Molly Harper
Half-Moon Hollow #5

Delivering a rare book to a valued customer is definitely part of mild-mannered archivist Anna Winthrop's job description. You know what isn't? Protecting her precious cargo from mid-flight theft by the very pilot who is flying her to Half-Moon Hollow...while trying to appear as unappetizing as possible to the only other passenger, a vampire. Undead bookstore owner Jane Jameson could be waiting a very long time for her book. Possibly forever.

Fortunately, Anna's dashing fanged companion Finn Palmeroy helps her fend off the attack, but not before their plane crash lands in the forest hundreds of miles from civilization. Great, now she's stranded with a priceless tome and a rakish vampire whose bedtime is fast approaching. Why does everyone want this book so badly, anyway? Anna just wants to get it to Jane before Finn decides to turn her into dinner-or sweep her off her feet. Okay, the second option is really tempting. But they're not out of the woods yet..
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Ah, yet another fantastic Molly Harper read. Her books are on my auto-buy shelf, I don’t even bother to read the blurb prior to adding to my shelf. I simply know each one will bring a solid block of hilarious entertainment, and WHERE THE WILD THINGS BITE is no exception. This time around the hilarious hi-jinks take off with a bang, literally, as it centers on a plane crash. When I read Molly’s dedication/acknowledgement page saying that she wrote this story about a plane crash while traveling on several flights of all things, I laughed out loud and knew I was in for a good book. You’ve gotta have a sense of humor to write about impending doom a f light while on one. And ironically, I’m writing this review while flying on a plane just to add a little more cosmic humor to the mix.

True to form, Anna was more than a bit of a quirky character. I found her anxiety and ways of coping by researching and memorizing a insane amount of facts and statistics on everything she was afraid of. And considering how much she is afraid of, it’s a staggering amount of knowledge. And of course, that knowledge, anxiety and fact repetition annoy the hero in the most hilarious way. So it was a double win as she endeared me to her and also amused me at her antics that drove Finn so very batty. Combine a grumpy vampire and a neurotic fact driven ball of anxiety human, put them through a plane crash and you’d already have an interesting story. But then have them try and survive in the middle of an enormous wilderness without killing one another with secrets on both sides abound, and you’re in for a hilarious treat of a read.

Without spoiling anything I’ll stop here. If you’re a fan of Molly’s books you’ll love this deliciously fun and hilarious romp in the wilderness in true Half-Moon Hollow style. And if you haven’t yet tried anything from this hilarious author, well what are you waiting for? If you love a whole lot of humor mixed in with serious vampire and shifter hijinks in a backwoods town, then these are the perfect books for you.

(Received a copy from the publisher)

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Previous Books:
     1. The Care and Feeding of Stray Vampires
     1.5. Driving Mr. Dead
     2. A Witch's Handbook of Kisses and Curses
     2.5. Undead Sublet
     2.7. I'm Dreaming of an Undead Christmas
     3. The Dangers of Dating a Rebound Vampire
     4. The Single Undead Moms Club
     4.5. Fangs for the Memories


Kirsten Reviews: Midnight Bites by Rachel Caine

, by Kt Clapsadl

Midnight Bites by Rachel Caine
Morganville Series

New York Times bestselling author Rachel Caine presents a collection of stories—including six new tales—featuring the little Texas town that’s overrun by the undead.

WELCOME TO MORGANVILLE.

YOU’LL NEVER WANT TO LEAVE.

By day, Morganville, Texas, is just a typical college town. By night, the vampires emerge and take control....

In a town where it’s not safe to be out after dark, student Claire Danvers and her friends have had their fair share of thrills. But Morganville still has a few secrets left to tell.

Now, in this collection, you can venture down the town’s strange streets, revisit all the tales you’ve come to love, and experience six new stories featuring your favorite Morganville residents—both human and vampire...

Midnight Bites by Rachel Caine is a collection of 22 short stories that revisit the characters of the Morganville Vampires series. This should be of interest to anyone reading the series for the first time as well as readers new to the books and its world. There are new stories and some that were previously published, and gathered together they fill in many of the blanks and “behind the scenes” moments in the lives of various characters. As a whole the series covered a lot of ground, but this collection definitely proves that there are still adventures to be with these characters, and readers will likely want even more stories after finishing it.

A few of the stories are summarized below.

Grudge

Concerns Shane’s sister Alyssa, and is the story of how she died from Shane’s point of view, expanding on what readers already know and the reasons for both his guilt and anger.

Wrong Place, Wrong Time

This short story is told from the point of view of Richard Morrell. Monica is involved in an attempted robbery, and justice falls on the perpetrators swiftly and without mercy.

Nothing Like an Angel

The history between Myrnin and Lady Grey is explore, beginning from her rescuing him from a dungeon prison and then nursing him back to health. It’s a nice look at their relationship and how it’s lasted this long.


Again, this collection is a good way to revisit the series, or for someone who wants a bit more background on the characters, but it doesn’t stand as well alone without having previously read some, if not all of the Morganville Vampires books.
(Received a copy from the publisher)

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Other Reviews:
     Library Lindsey
     YA Reads
     Much Loved Books

Previous Books:
     1. Glass Houses
     2. Dead Girls Dance
     3. Midnight Alley
     4. Feast of Fools
     5. Lord of Misrule
     6. Carpe Corpus
     7. Fade Out
     8. Kiss of Death
     9. Ghost Town
     10. Bite Club 
     11. Last Breath  
     12. Black Dawn
     13. Bitter Blood
     14. Fall of Night
     15. Daylighters
     Novella Collection: Midnight Bites (Katie's Review)



Early Review: Unwanted by Jennifer Estep

, by Kt Clapsadl

Unwanted by Jennifer Estep
Elemental Assassin #14.5

The New York Times bestselling Elemental Assassin series continues with a new e-novella--from the point of view of Finnegan Lane, the foster brother of Gin Blanco, and a fan favorite of readers of the series.

The fallout from his disastrous “family reunion” in Bitter Bite has left Finn feeling hurt, angry, and depressed. He can barely stand to look at himself in the mirror, much less eat any of the delicious barbecue from Gin’s famed Pork Pit restaurant.

But when the funeral for a slain security guard at his bank turns into a showdown with some nasty underworld giants, Finn knows that he must act in order to protect an innocent family.

Finnegan Lane might be the most unwanted man in Ashland these days, but he’s determined to try to make amends for his past mistakes...

This was a short but surprisingly full of depth read. To be honest, while I've adored Finn throughout the series, my feelings for him drastically changed in the last book. The way he lost his head over his mother, and basically abandoned Gin despite all they've been through together as siblings over the many trials they have faced? Well it just left a sour taste in my mouth and he firmly was on my crap list. So that being said, this novella was exactly what I needed (and the characters needed) to get past those mistakes. In UNWANTED Finn is utterly wrecked at his behavior, barely eating or sleeping and overall completely miserable. He just wasn't in a good head-space at all, and that's just "sloppy" as Gin would say when you consider there's always some threat after them.

So when the widow of one of the deceased guards from his fiasco from trusting his mother runs into some pretty big trouble, Finn can't seem to help himself in needing to help her. And boy does she not make it easy, and frankly it's just what he needed to start his own healing process in forgiving himself. How can others forgive him if he's still stuck in loathing and self denial? I really enjoyed how the author showed this journey towards healing, but in true Elemental Assassin style, that healing came with a fast paced and killer (literally) plot. I also loved how she made his guilt and healing process realistic. He's still got a long way to go, but at least he's now headed on the right path.

I highly recommend this novella for fans of the series, especially those like me who need to see a bit of redemption from Mr. Finnegan Lane.

(Received a copy from the publisher)

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Other Reviews:
     Mixed Book Bag
     The Linseyverse

Previous Books:
     1. Spider's Bite
     2. Web of Lies
     3. Venom
     4. Tangled Threads
     5. Spider's Revenge
     6. By a Thread
     7. Widow's Web
     8. Deadly Sting
     9. Heart of Venom
     10. The Spider
     11. Poison Promise
     12. Black Widow
     13. Spider's Trap
     14. Bitter Bite

Early Review: Paper and Fire by Rachel Caine

, by Kt Clapsadl

Paper and Fire by Rachel Caine
The Great Library #2

With an iron fist, The Great Library controls the knowledge of the world, ruthlessly stamping out all rebellion, forbidding the personal ownership of books in the name of the greater good.

Jess Brightwell has survived his introduction to the sinister, seductive world of the Library, but serving in its army is nothing like he envisioned. His life and the lives of those he cares for have been altered forever. His best friend is lost, and Morgan, the girl he loves, is locked away in the Iron Tower and doomed to a life apart.

Embarking on a mission to save one of their own, Jess and his band of allies make one wrong move and suddenly find themselves hunted by the Library’s deadly automata and forced to flee Alexandria, all the way to London.

But Jess’s home isn’t safe anymore. The Welsh army is coming, London is burning, and soon, Jess must choose between his friends, his family, or the Library willing to sacrifice anything and anyone in the search for ultimate control…

I'm a huge fan of the dystopian genre, so I really appreciate when a series comes along that is as unique and interesting as this one. Rachel Caine brought a truly horrify prospect to life, between the burners who destroy books, to the Library's iron fist control, and the limited content in books. Every single moment I found myself both riveted and horrified at what was happening. It really is enjoyable for a book's world to grip you as much as this one does. There's no sophomore syndrome to be found here!

Jess has really come an incredibly long way from the impetuous boy we met in the first book. It's rather impressive to be honest. Of course he still bucks against authority and goes his own way more often than not, but he takes the time to try and think through the consequences for others. He's truly admirable in his willingness to sacrifice himself for others and he's really grown/growing into a force to be reckoned with. When you add his admirable qualities to the rest of the fully three dimensional characters, particularly Glain, Khalia, Wolfe, and well frankly his entire crew to be honest, you really have a winner.

I've yet to read a Rachel Caine series that has let me down, in fact far from it, and The Great Library series is no exception. My only wish is that there winds up being more than three books as a trilogy just isn't enough. Fans of the series will be more than pleased with this new installment. I can't wait to see what happens next!

(Received a copy from the publisher)

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Other Reviews:
     The Eater of Books!
     Hit or Miss Books
     Book is Glee

Previous Books:
     1. Ink and Bone

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