Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Waiting on Wednesday(84): The Wicked Deep & The Heart Forger

This lovely picture is borrowed from Thoughts on Tomes, you should check out her page!

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill from Breaking the Spine and specifically spotlights upcoming novels we can't wait to read. As always, there are some amazing upcoming books, but this week I'm particularly excited for..

Jessica's Pick

Title: The Wicked Deep
Author: Shea Ernshaw
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: March 6th, 2018

Welcome to the cursed town of Sparrow…

Where, two centuries ago, three sisters were sentenced to death for witchery. Stones were tied to their ankles and they were drowned in the deep waters surrounding the town.

Now, for a brief time each summer, the sisters return, stealing the bodies of three weak-hearted girls so that they may seek their revenge, luring boys into the harbor and pulling them under.

Like many locals, seventeen-year-old Penny Talbot has accepted the fate of the town. But this year, on the eve of the sisters’ return, a boy named Bo Carter arrives; unaware of the danger he has just stumbled into.

Mistrust and lies spread quickly through the salty, rain-soaked streets. The townspeople turn against one another. Penny and Bo suspect each other of hiding secrets. And death comes swiftly to those who cannot resist the call of the sisters.

But only Penny sees what others cannot. And she will be forced to choose: save Bo, or save herself.

The cover is giving me all the feels!! I'm salivating thinking about the death, revenge, and heartbreak in this book!  I can't wait!!

Melissa's Pick

Title:The Heart Forger 
Author: Rin Chupeco
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Release Date: March 20th 

No one knows death like Tea. A bone witch who can resurrect the dead, she has the power to take life…and return it. And she is done with her self-imposed exile. Her heart is set on vengeance, and she now possesses all she needs to command the mighty daeva. With the help of these terrifying beasts, she can finally enact revenge against the royals who wronged her―and took the life of her one true love.

But there are those who plot against her, those who would use Tea’s dark power for their own nefarious ends. Because you can’t kill someone who can never die…

That cover , that synopsis,death, betrayal, The Heart Forger sounds awesome.
I can't wait to read it!!
Let us know what books you're waiting for, in the comments below!

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Top Ten Tuesday (49): Favorite Book Quotes

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

Favorite Book Quotes!!

Jessica's Picks
This is easily my favorite Top Ten Tuesday!! I love quotes, they are over my classroom, my room, my planners, agendas,and I include quotes in my staff emails!!
  1. "I don't know what's worse. Being mistreat because of the color of your skin, your size, or having to prove that it really happened."Piecing Me Together by Renée Watson
  2. "ANOTHER THING ABOUT THE RULES, They weren't meant to be broken. They were meant for the broken to follow. Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds
  3. When you have something precious, you do not forget it. Breath, Eyes, Memory by Edwidge Danticat
  4. "If you cut yourself off from the roots, you'll wither. Roots that ignore the branches turn them into termite dust. Paradise by Toni Morrison
  5. " There are all kinds of courage," said Dumbledore, smiling. "It tales a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends." Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J.K. Rowling  
Melissa's Picks

  1. Sometimes people think they know you. They know a few facts about you, and they piece you together in a way that makes sense to them. And if you don't know yourself very well, you might even believe that they are right. But the truth is, that isn't you. That isn't you at all.”― Leila Sales, This Song Will Save Your Life
  2. “Sometimes this was just the way the game ended. Sometimes you did your best, and it all went straight to hell anyway.” By Brenna YovanoffThe Replacement
  3. “I loved everyone who said yes to the world and tried to make it better instead of worse, because so much in the world was ugly- and just about all the ugly parts were due to humans.” 
    By Lauren Myracle, Shine
  4. “Searching, always. And yes, we all are, or soon will be, disenchanted, I still want to know it all: the heartbreak, the fear, the friendship, the anger, the love. All of it.”
     By Nina LaCour, The Disenchantments
  5. “Sometimes you make choices in life and sometimes choices make you.”By Gayle Forman, If I Stay

Teaser Tuesday(17): The 7 1/2 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle & The Friday Night Kitting Club

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Ambrosia @ The Purple Booker.
Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read.
  • Open to a random page.
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page.
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR 

"You are! Tell me what you know!" I demand.
"I can't." pg.231
The 7 1/2 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by

Puffing a bit as she reached the top of the stairs,Anita stopped to catch her breath.Maybe Nathan was right- she was getting a bit old. 

Pg.148 The Friday Night Knitting Club
 By Kate Jacobs

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Waiting on Wednesday(83): Burro Hills & Bruja Born

This lovely picture is borrowed from Thoughts on Tomes, you should check out her page!!

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill from Breaking the Spine and specifically spotlights upcoming novels we can't wait to read. As always, there are some amazing upcoming books, but this week I'm particularly excited for..

Jessica's Pick

Title: Bruja Born
Author: Zoraida Cordova
Publisher:  Sourcebooks Fire
Release Date: June 5th, 2018

Three sisters. One spell. Countless dead.
Lula Mortiz feels like an outsider. Her sister's newfound Encantrix powers have wounded her in ways that Lula's bruja healing powers can't fix, and she longs for the comfort her family once brought her. Thank the Deos for Maks, her sweet, steady boyfriend who sees the beauty within her and brings light to her life.

Then a bus crash turns Lula's world upside down. Her classmates are all dead, including Maks. But Lula was born to heal, to fix. She can bring Maks back, even if it means seeking help from her sisters and defying Death herself. But magic that defies the laws of the deos is dangerous. Unpredictable. And when the dust settles, Maks isn't the only one who's been brought back...

Yes, yes I know I think Melissa chose this book for her W.O.W too! But I loved the first book, so I can't wait for this second book either!! I mean look at that cover!! We know how much I love Beyonce so..the cover has me in my feels!!! Ugh, I can't wait to read this!!

Melissa's Pick
Title: Burro Hills
Author: Julia Lynn Rubin
Publisher:  Diversion Books
Release Date: March 20th 2018

In a town like Burro Hills, you either figure out who you are or die trying.

Seventeen-year-old Jack has lived in the troubled California town his entire life. He hides the truth about his sexuality from everyone, including his best friend Jess and his childhood rival and drug dealing partner, Toby. Keeping your head down, Jack knows, is the best way to survive.

But when Connor, a fearless new arrival, enrolls at school, he sees right through Jack’s façade. Jack finds himself falling for Connor, and the feeling is mutual―but their relationship will set into a motion a series of events with lasting consequences. After a falling out with Jess, Jack is worried to see her growing close to the manipulative Toby. To make matters worse, Jack is becoming increasingly paranoid that Toby will expose his relationship with Connor.

As tensions rise and more secrets come to a head, Jack cuts off ties with Toby. Hungry for revenge, Toby comes after Jack, jeopardizing his budding romance with Connor and the life he’s tried so hard to salvage in Burro Hills.

This book sounds awesome and the cover looks incredible. I can't wait to read it!!!

Let us know what books you're waiting for, in the comments below!

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Top Ten Tuesday(48): Books I Could Re-read Forever

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

Books I could Re-read Forever

Jessica's Picks
  1. Twilight by Stephenie Meyers!! Ummm...I know I know but this was a huge book for me! I own the collector was a gift! Twilight has a special place in my heart. 
  2. Breath, Eyes, Memory by Edwidge Danticat - I love this book, and I love Oprah's book club. I have about 3 different copies of this book. My goal is to one day read every book from her book club!
  3. Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West (The Wicked Years #1) by Gregory Maguire- This book hands down is amazing, I encourage everyone to read it. This book made me love Elphaba more, she is obviously just misunderstood..I love the setting, and learning about the other people/villages.
  4. Legend (Legend #1) by Marie Lu - Amazing!! I loved this book, and the series! I want Day to win at all costs, he lost need to read!
  5. Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston - I love this book! How Janie's grandmother tried to protect her by marrying her off at a young age, which was common back then...This book is about how Janie feels, and what she has to overcome in order to survive. Janie had no one telling her "Thank you", she had to navigate the world her way. Realizing that she has to "create her own rules" in order to survive in a world where Black women are treated as prizes... 

Melissa's Picks
  1. The Realm of Possibility  by David levithan This is a gorgeus book written somewhat in verse!!I've read this book multiple time at least once a year.I highly suggest everyone check out this book.
  2. Tiger Lily ByJodi Lynn Anderson This book gave me all the feels and I plan to get a tattoo based on it
  3. Gabi, a Girl in Pieces by Isabel Quintero I adore this book for a variety of reason. The main reason though is that  I love the fact that Isabel Quintero wrote a book that I can see resonating with young Hispanic readers.
  4. Our Chemical Hearts by Krystal Sutherland Our Chemical Hearts is fan fucking-tastic!!! It’s filled with references to books, music, films, etc. that will make you smile big.I have yet to reread this book but it will definetly happen.
  5. Any of the Harry Potter book by J.K Rowling I am here for all things Harryy Potter!!!

Let us know some of your favorite books to reread!!!!!

Monday, February 26, 2018

Review: The Dark Choir Series (1-4)

Title: The Curse Merchant(The Dark Choir #1)
Author: J.P. Sloan
Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press
Release Date: October 25th, 2012

Dorian Lake spent years cornering the Baltimore hex-crafting market, using his skills at the hermetic arts to exact karmic justice for those whom the system has failed. He keeps his magic clean and free of soul-corrupting Netherwork, thus avoiding both the karmic blow-back of his practice and the notice of the Presidium, a powerful cabal of practitioners that polices the esoteric arts in America. However, when an unscrupulous Netherworker interferes with both his business and his personal life, Dorian's disarming charisma and hermetic savvy may not be enough to keep his soul out of jeopardy.

His rival, a soul monger named Neil Osterhaus, wouldn't be such a problem were it not for Carmen, Dorian's captivating ex-lover. After two years' absence Carmen arrives at Dorian’s doorstep with a problem: she sold her soul to Osterhaus, and has only two weeks to buy it back. Hoping to win back Carmen's affections, Dorian must find a replacement soul without tainting his own. As Dorian descends into the shadows of Baltimore’s underworld, he must decide how low he is willing to stoop in order to save Carmen from eternal damnation... with the Presidium watching, waiting for him to cross the line.

Title: The Curse Servant (The Dark Choir #2)
Author: J.P. Sloan
Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press
Release Date: February 25th, 2015

The one person standing between Hell… and an innocent girl… is a man without a soul.

A regular life isn’t in the cards for Dorian Lake, but with his charm-crafting business invigorated, and the prospect of a serious relationship within his grasp, life is closer to normal than Dorian could ever expect. In the heat of the Baltimore mayoral campaign, Dorian has managed to balance his arrangements with Deputy Mayor Julian Bright with his search to find his lost soul. Dorian soon learns of a Netherworker, the head of a dangerous West Coast cabal, who might be able to find and return his soul. The price? Just one curse.

Sounds easy… but nothing ever is for Dorian. A dark presence arrives in the city, hell-bent on finding Dorian’s soul first. Innocents are caught in the crossfire, and Dorian finds it harder to keep his commitments to Bright. When the fight gets personal, and the entity hits too close to home, Dorian must rely on those he trusts the least to save the ones he loves. As he tests the limits of his hermetic skills to defeat this new enemy, will Dorian lose his one chance to avoid damnation?

Title: The Curse Mandate (The Dark Choir #3)
Author: J.P. Sloan
Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press
Release Date: December 19th, 2016

War is coming…how much hell will Dorian Lake unleash when the gloves come off?

Saddled with both a new pupil and a bar to run, Dorian has to pick his battles carefully if he is to find his soul. When the Dark Choir bargains with Dorian in exchange for his loyalty, the power they offer may be too valuable to refuse…for a new menace threatens the hermetic order in America.

Members of the Presidium are being outed in the press, and the formidable cabal’s response is swift and brutal. But Dorian has no time to hide from the Presidium’s fury, as the new Deputy Mayor taps him to investigate a string of occult crimes. Dorian soon uncovers an ancient enemy of the Presidium, which threatens to plunge America into a lawless era not seen since the Dark Ages.

To sway Dorian to their cause, the Presidium gives him free rein to practice Netherwork. But even if the man without a soul can survive this conflict, if he can protect his friends and allies, if he can mean the difference between order and chaos… will this mandate save Dorian Lake from the schemes of the Dark Choir?

Title: The Dark Interest (The Dark Choir #4)
Author: J.P. Sloan
Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press
Release Date: August 22nd, 2017

Surrounded by evil on every side, Dorian Lake is about to face his most personal challenge yet…

A wave of dark voudon magic is rolling into Baltimore. With new rivals on every street corner and hidden enemies out for blood, hex peddler Dorian Lake is doing his best to keep his head above water. All he wants is a chance to reclaim his soul, but an unseen adversary is driving the city into chaos around him.

Dorian suspects The Dark Choir, which has both haunted and hunted him for too long, is behind a groundswell of violence in the city. He’s more certain than ever that they are manipulating events to exterminate the human species. Aided by a handful of close allies--a powerful Stregha, a metaphysical scientist, and a coven of Wiccans--Dorian must follow a series of labyrinthine clues to unravel his greatest enemy’s plans before they come to fruition, even if it means facing off with megalomaniacs, nickel-and-dime gangsters, and even City Hall itself.

Dorian goes on the offense, pulling every tool from his magical arsenal to rain down the vengeance he’s believed by so many to wield. Dorian has never embraced his identity as a Curse Merchant, but his life is on the line, and he’s about to become a true believer in his own power. Sometimes you just have to fight fire with fire--or, in this case, darkness with darkness.

When I first requested to read this book, I didn't know that it was a series...Lolz! I loved the cover for The Dark Interest, I think it's a beautiful cover! I know what you're thinking the cover says The Dark Choir Book 4, I did not see that...

I'm not even sure where to start in this book, I went through so many emotions! I wanted Dorian to say"Put some respect on my name!", but this didn't happen until the final book for Dorian to get to this point in his life... I mean the man gives everyone a chance, even if you completely mess him over. Dorian is your average, run of the mill guy who specializes in hexes, and charms. He wakes up from a two year slumber, only to realize that his life, and those he cares about are in a danger. Yes, he was under a memory charm, and had no idea! Yikes! We see a guy who is trying to piece together his life, which happens to be in shambles. Enter Dorian's old flame/lover Carmen who needs his help, and he feels compelled to help her. What I should have noticed is the trend of Dorian, falling for every woman who crosses his path, and needs his help..Did I mention that these women are either the villain or perceived as untrustworthy, evil woman. For instance Carmen has tricked Dorian into getting her out of a particular situation but manipulates him to the ninth degree...Like I'm pretty sure without the dramatic manipulation Dorian would have helped, he seriously cannot help himself... His next love interest Ches is actually a little crazy, she is the reason everything is going to hell but he forgives her, and that's it. But forgives, forgives...I mean Ches almost killed someone very important to him, and BOOM! She's forgiven.. In book #3 Ches, who is the reason everything went BOOM/Love Interest from the previous  is now his mentee.  Why!?!?! Well a very dangerous woman told Dorian if he did not help Ches, she would kill her blah,blah,blah...Honestly at this point I was extremely upset with Dorian...Oh I forgot to mention by helping Ches, umm..she has potential to be great, Dorian can help her..she should have died #sorrynotsorry I can't understand why Ches is alive nor why he feels compelled to help her. Dorian talks about redemption but Ches killed a part of someone close to him, and he's helping her. Not only that but he also decides to help Ches's brother..Honestly Ches's family is doomed but Dorian is trying to be Captain Save Everyone even though I'm living on borrowed time... like Dorian has this horrible version of love, and the love he thinks he deserves is appalling if not scary....Now we have book #4 which is by far my favorite book in the series! Enter the gorgeous woman from the cover, who we are introduced in the other books but we finally get a chance to get to know her. She is one amazing-ly scary witch who protects those she cares about. Dorian finally is in a place where he cares about someone, and she cares too. Their connection isn't forced as it seemed to be in the other books. Dorian has come to terms that he has to years left, he can curse people, and he will. Why because still has no soul, and at this point we are not even sure he wants it back. I really liked The Dark Choir Series,  Dorian, I just want him to be smarter, and selfish..Yes, selfish he deserves it, after all he has been through. I can't wait for book #5!! Sorry it's so long! give The Dark Choir Series a read!!

* I voluntarily read an advanced readers copy of this book from Curiosity Quills Press. All opinions expressed are entirely my own.*

Review: The Book of Secrets

Title:The Book of Secrets(The Last Oracle#1)
Author: Melissa McShane
Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press 
Release Date: February 20th, 2018

Helena Davies just wants a job that will get her out of her parents’ basement. Abernathy’s Bookstore is disorganized, out of the way, and smells funny, but it pays well and promises to at least be interesting. She has no idea how interesting her life will become. By the end of the first day, Helena has a dead boss in the basement, an unexpected promotion, and the news that she is now a part of an endless war against creatures from another reality.

As Abernathy’s newest custodian, Helena is responsible for its secrets, including the most important one: Abernathy’s isn’t just a bookstore. It’s the world’s only living oracle, producing prophecies to help fight the war against alien invaders bent on draining this world of its magic. Helena’s job is to find books to answer questions put to the oracle by the Wardens, fighters in the Long War. It seems simple enough, but Helena’s new job is anything but.

She has allies: her best friend Viv, from whom she has no secrets; Harry and Harriet Keller, elderly magi skilled at uncovering secrets; and the enigmatic Malcolm Campbell, warrior magus and one of the few who have faith in Helena’s abilities. But not everyone is thrilled that an outsider now has charge of one of the world’s most powerful magical entities. Helena must defend herself against the antagonism of Judy Rasmussen, who’d expected to be the next custodian of Abernathy’s, and her father William, powerful leader of the Wardens and someone with an agenda of his own.

Without training, without any knowledge of the magical world, and facing the hostility of those who’d wanted someone else to be Abernathy’s custodian, Helena must navigate the treacherous waters of her new world and find a place for herself within it. But there’s still a murderer on the loose, someone who intended to control Abernathy’s by killing its custodian—and Helena might be next on his list.
I think the cover is super cute! This cover definitely fits the book! I originally wanted to read this book because it reminded me of the TV show The Librarians and The Warehouse. It's okay if you don't know either show but they are pretty cool, so I could check them out.

 The Book of Secrets is about Helena who is sort of unhappy with the life she is living, and is looking for a better job. Helena interviews for a job at a local bookstore, which could use some help, and the owner offers her the job on the spot. Helena accepts because who wouldn't?? After starting right away, the unexpected happens, the owner is killed , and Helena is left in-charge...We see Helena trying to navigate the bookstore world which is nothing like she expected. Also trying to figure out who would kill Mr. Briggs, and Why? Helena learns from the customers that the bookstore called "Abernathy", is a living oracle, that gives prophecies to the customers. Helena is now a custodian of "Abernathy", also there is a magical war happening, against Light, and Dark but she has to be neutral... Helena has to learn how "Abernathy"  works, and fast. She has to learn to work with "Abernathy",  stay alive, and keep the customers happy. This is fast paced book, Melissa keeps the readers on their feet, constantly on to the next thing. Books with magic!?!?! We need more of this, I really appreciated that Helena had no magically knowledge, the supporting characters were a very nice touch! I loved Helena's immediate family, they were sweet, and supportive! Much like Harry Potter made you want to visit Hogwarts, The Books of Secrets will make you want to visit Abernathy, and ask the oracle anything. Did I mention "Abernathy" is a living oracle, I probably did! You definitely should give this a read!

* I voluntarily read an advanced readers copy of this book from Curiosity Quills Press. All opinions expressed are entirely my own.*

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