Blog tour: Fireborne (The Aurelian Cycle #1) by Rosaria Munda

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BOOK INFORMATION

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Fireborne (The Aurelian Cycle #1)

by Rosaria Munda
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Release Date: October 15th 2019

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Dragons
Synopsis:

Seraphina meets Red Rising in a debut young adult fantasy that’s full of rivalry, romance… and dragons.

 

Annie and Lee were just children when a brutal revolution changed their world, giving everyone—even the lowborn—a chance to test into the governing class of dragonriders.

 

Now they are both rising stars in the new regime, despite backgrounds that couldn’t be more different. Annie’s lowborn family was executed by dragonfire, while Lee’s aristocratic family was murdered by revolutionaries. Growing up in the same orphanage forged their friendship, and seven years of training have made them rivals for the top position in the dragonriding fleet.

 

But everything changes when survivors from the old regime surface, bent on reclaiming the city.

 

With war on the horizon and his relationship with Annie changing fast, Lee must choose to kill the only family he has left or to betray everything he’s come to believe in. And Annie must decide whether to protect the boy she loves . . . or step up to be the champion her city needs.

 

From debut author Rosaria Munda comes a gripping adventure that calls into question which matters most: the family you were born into, or the one you’ve chosen.

 

BOOK LINKS

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36578543-fireborne

Amazon: https://amzn.to/30u8Vxd

B&N: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/fireborne-rosaria-munda/1130335149

iTunes: https://books.apple.com/us/book/id1450108384

Bookdepository: https://www.bookdepository.com/Fireborne-Rosaria-Munda/9781984816511?ref=grid-view&qid=1562938950225&sr=1-1

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/hk/en/ebook/fireborne

Google Books: https://books.google.fr/books/about/Fireborne.html?id=J2A_vwEACAAJ&redir_esc=y

 

AUTHOR INFORMATION

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Rosaria grew up in rural North Carolina, where she climbed trees, read Harry Potter fanfiction, and taught herself Latin. She studied political theory at Princeton and lives in Chicago with her husband and cat.

 

For book recs and updates, follow her on instagram: @rosariamunda

 

AUTHOR LINKS

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17320159.Rosaria_Munda

Website: http://rosariamunda.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/rosariamunda

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/rosariamunda/?hl=en

 

Excerpt

Prologue

Later, he would be known as the First Protector, and under his vision the city would transform. Serfs would be freed, schools would be built, and dragons would, for the first time, be ridden by commoners.

Before that, he was the leader of the bloodiest revolution his people had ever seen.

He never doubted that he would create a just city. Nor did he doubt that the families of the old regime deserved to die. But he did, sometimes, regret the way it happened, the day the palace was finally overrun.

He remembered in particular one of the ruling families, their tormentors still at work when he found them. The dragonlord had been kept alive, to watch; his youngest son was the only child left. A boy of about seven or eight, his expression blank beneath a mask of blood. The remains of their family lay around them.

“Stop this foolishness at once,” the First Protector said, when he and his guard found them.

The revolutionaries let go of the boy, whom they had been hurting, and began to protest: This man is Leon Stormscourge, don’t you know what he’s done—but they fell silent when the dragonlord spoke from his knees on the bloodstained carpet.

“My son,” he said, in the language he and the First Protector shared. “Please, Atreus.”

The First Protector took a half glance at the child. He said, “Leo will be looked after.”

He gave one of his guard a murmured order. The soldier started, hesitated, and then lifted the dragonlord’s son in his arms. When the boy had been carried, limp and silent, from the room, the leader of the Revolution knelt before the dragonlord.

“Those—animals—” the dragonlord rasped.

The First Protector did not disagree. Instead, he put a hand to the knife on his belt. When he met the dragonlord’s gaze, it was in an unspoken question. The dragonlord closed his eyes and nodded.

Then, to the First Protector’s surprise, he spoke.

“Your vision,” he said. “Do you think it will ever be worth this, Atreus?”

The First Protector drew his knife.

“Yes,” he said.

The dragonlord’s question returned to him often in the years that followed. Even as many of the other details of the Revolution began to fade from his memory, he remembered Leon Stormscourge.

Leon’s son, on the other hand, was a detail he forgot.

Chapter 1
Messages from the Ministry
Nine Years Later

Lee

Morning is our favorite time to fly. Today, even with the tournament looming and the empty arena below us a reminder that soon we’ll be watched, for the first time, by thousands, it’s still possible to savor the city sprawled beneath a dragon’s wings. When we pull tight on a turn, I glimpse one of Pallor’s black eyes, depthless, turned on me. The line between us, of shared emotions and thoughts that are usually latent in the saddle, goes taut. Yes. Today it begins. Today we’ll rise.

But in order to do that, I’ll need a clear head. I gently extricate myself from Pallor’s simmering anticipation and refocus on the arena. Two other dragonriders fly with us, each riding one of the other two breeds: Crissa and her skyfish are in the air above us, while Cor and his stormscourge glide below, bellowing ash over the arena stands. We’re on our last rehearsal, this time with just the squadron leaders.

I lift my voice over the wind. “You’re taking her too low, Cor.”

Cor grunts, frustrated, and urges his stormscourge higher. We’ve been over the choreography of the tournament’s opening ceremony over and over with ministry officials, and every time the question of how to demonstrate stormscourge might becomes tricky. Before the Revolution, the dragon breed of Stormscourge House—of my family—were known for terrorizing the countryside; but in even older days, they were our island’s greatest defense against aerial invasion.

“They told us to fire low,” says Cor.

“Not that low. It’s risky for the audience.”

Our dragons are still immature, barely horse-size, and can’t yet breathe fire. But the smoke they produce can still burn.

Crissa and her skyfish, long, slender, and pale enough blue to blend with the morning sky, circle above us. “You want to impress the people,” she calls down to Cor. “Not roast them.”

Cor waves a hand. “All right, all right . . .”

Our fleet is still in training, dragons and riders both. Known now as Guardians, the new regime’s dragonriders are lowborn, commoners, even former serfs. No longer the sons of dragonlords.

Except for me, though I’m the only one who knows that.

Because in the wake of the Revolution, to be dragonborn is to be wanted for dead. I was born Leo but, since the orphanage, I’ve been Lee. Not even the First Protector, who saved my life and then welcomed me, without recognition, into his Guardian program two years after that, knows the truth.

That a Stormscourge tested into the meritocratic dragonriding program designed to replace everything his family stood for.

Even though I know I’m lucky to be here—lucky to be alive, lucky to have escaped the orphanage—memories of the old life have a way of intruding and twisting. Especially today, as Pallor and I circle above the Palace arena, open to the public for the first time since the Revolution. The old regime had tournaments here, too, that I watched my father compete in. Dreaming of the day it would be my turn.

I lean forward and rest a gloved hand on Pallor’s silver-scaled neck as his wings, translucent in the morning light, tighten in a dive. Pallor is an aurelian, a breed known for being small, maneuverable, careful, and the aurelian formation for today’s ceremony is the only one complex enough to require coleaders. I can rehearse alone but, really, to do the thing properly, I need—

Annie. There she is.

Another aurelian, this one amber-toned, has emerged from the cave mouth at the base of the arena, and on her back rides my sparring partner, Annie. She and I have trained together for as long as we’ve been in the Guardian program, and we’ve known each other since the orphanage before that.

It’s a past life’s worth of memories that we’re both pretty good at not talking about.

“Annie!” Crissa calls with a cheerful wave. “There you are.”

“Lee’s been flying like an idiot out here without you,” Cor says.

Pallor and I fire ash downward. Cor dodges the stream with a bark of laughter.

Annie’s lips curve at Cor’s remark, but instead of answering, she rolls seamlessly into formation opposite me, her dragon, Aela, mirroring Pallor’s movements. Her red-brown braid hangs low on her back, her freckled face is set in its concentration. I’ve thought of Annie as beautiful—strikingly beautiful—for almost as long as I can remember, but I’ve never told her.

“Play it from the top?” I suggest.

There are calls of assent from the other three.

We right ourselves only when the bell rings the hour. The arena below, the Palace to one side and the pillar supporting Pytho’s Keep on the other, the jagged rooftops, the plains stretching out to the sea—for a moment I feel a protectiveness, almost a possessiveness, of the city and island spread below. The vows that we took when we became Guardians echo in my mind: All that I am, henceforth, belongs to Callipolis. By the wings of my dragon I will keep her . . .

Today, eight of the thirty-two Guardians will compete in the quarterfinal tournament for Firstrider, commander of the aerial fleet. I’m one of those eight, along with Annie, Cor, and Crissa. Qualifying rounds have been going on among the dragonriders for weeks.

It will be the first time since the Revolution that Callipolis names a Firstrider, one of the only titles it’s kept from the old regime. The dragons of the revolutionary fleet are finally old enough, and their riders well-enough trained, to vie for a position that’s been vacant since the Revolution. For the other Guardians, the Firstrider Tournaments are a chance to prove themselves; for me, it will be that and something more.

Because Firstrider is a title I’ve wanted since before the Revolution. It would be all the recognition, power, and respect that my family lost over the course of a single bloody month when I was eight years old, regained.
Excerpted from Fireborne by Rosaria Munda. Copyright © 2019 by Rosaria Munda. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

 

Direct link to the excerpt: https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/586257/fireborne-by-rosaria-munda/

 

GIVEAWAY

Prize: Win (1) of (2) copies of Fireborne (The Aurelian Cycle #1) by Rosaria Munda (US/CAN Only)

Starts & ends : 9th October 2019

Enter here.

 

 

Blog Tour + Book Review: Sam Saves the night by Shari Simpson (3.5 stars)

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About the Book

Title: SAM SAVES THE NIGHT

Author: Shari Simpson

Pub. Date: October 1, 2019

Publisher: Disney-Hyperion

Formats: Hardcover, eBook

Pages: 304

Find it: GoodreadsAmazonKindle, B&N, iBooks, Kobo, TBD

 

What would you do if you could stay out all night and not get in trouble?

Thirteen-year-old Sam has no friends, but you can’t really blame her. She lives her life in a state of chronic exhaustion thanks to her nightly sleepwalking jaunts, which include trips to the store, treehouse-building projects, and breaking-and-entering escapades-none of which she remembers in the morning. Her condition is taking its toll on her family (and her life), so when her mom takes her to see a wacky strip-mall sleep specialist, Sam is wary, but 100 percent in.

The night after the doc works his mojo, Sam wakes up outside her body, watching herself sleep. FREAKY! But once she gets over the panic attack, she realizes there’s a whole world of detached-souls out there, called SleepWakers-cliques of kids like the Achieves, who use their sleep time to learn new things; the Numbs, who eat junk food and play video games all night long, and the OCDeeds who search for missing things and organize other people’s stuff. And then there are the Mean Dreams, led by Madalynn Sucret, the nicest girl in Sam’s school, who shows Sam that she can use her power to get back at a bully who’s been tormenting her. Sam is intrigued-until it becomes clear that Madalynn is the real bully and the “tormentor” is just, well… sad. Now Sam is faced with uniting the various tribes of SleepWakers to fight back against Madalynn and the Mean Dreams in the most epic battle the night has ever seen.

 

About Shari:

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Shari Simpson is a playwright and screenwriter who cowrote the off-Broadway hit Maybe Baby, It’s You and the Disney Channel Original Movie The Swap, both with her longtime writing partner, Charlie Shahnaian. She also won the 2012 BlogHer Voice of the Year for Humor Writing. Shari lives in Hoboken, NJ, with a patient husband, two hilarious teenagers, a demonic cat, and her pug, Mila Kunis. This is her first novel.

Twitter | Goodreads

 

Book review

Sam Saves the Night[1]

(I received a free eARC from the publisher for a voluntary and honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.)

Sam saves the night (Sleepwakers #1) by Shari Simpson

Genre: MG, Fantasy

Rating: 3.5/5 stars

(Synopsis from Goodreads)

What would you do if you could stay out all night and not get in trouble ? Twelve-year-old Sam has no friends, but you can’t really blame her. She lives her life in a state of chronic exhaustion thanks to her nightly sleepwalking jaunts, which include trips to the store, treehouse building projects, and breaking-and-entering escapades—none of which she remembers in the morning. Her condition is taking its toll on her family (and her life), so when her mom takes her to see a wacky strip mall sleep specialist, Sam is wary, but 100 percent in. The night after the doc works his mojo, Sam wakes up outside her body, watching herself sleep. FREAKY! But once she gets over the panic attack, she realizes there’s a whole world of detached-sleepers out there—cliques of kids like the Achieves,who use their sleep time to learn new things; the Numbs, who eat junk food and play video games all night long, and the OCDeeds who search for missing things and organize other people’s stuff. And then there are the Mean Dreams, led by Madalynn Sucret, the nicest girl in school, who shows Sam that she can use her power to get back at her bully. Sam is intrigued—until it becomes clear that Madalynn is the real bully and the “bully” is just, well, sad. Now Sam is faced with uniting the various tribes of Sleepers to fight back against Madalynn and the Mean Dreams in the most epic battle the night has ever seen.

(Review)

(DISCLAIMER: All thoughts and opinions are my own.)

I usually don’t read Middle grade books, but I found this book really interesting. I wasn’t a big fan of the writing style, but really liked the simplistic story with an interesting twist.

This book is a great introduction for those trying to get into MG fantasy or fantasy in general as it eases you into the easy world building with well-executed pacing. Overall, this book was a blast to read and I would definitely recommend this to younger readers who are learning to read in the fantasy genre.

Have you read this book? What are your thoughts and opinions? Leave a comment down below! 🙂

 

Tour Schedule:

Week One:

10/1/2019- Cindy’s Love of BooksExcerpt

10/2/2019- Portrait of a BookReview

10/3/2019- Moonlight RendezvousReview

10/4/2019- BookHounds YAExcerpt

 

Week Two:

10/7/2019- Struck by StoriesReview

10/8/2019- Twirling Book PrincessExcerpt

10/9/2019- Shortcake_bibliophageExcerpt

10/10/2019- Love, Stars and BooksReview

10/11/2019- Dazzled by BooksReview

 

Week Three:

10/14/2019- YA Book NerdReview

10/15/2019- Life Within The PagesReview

10/16/2019- fictitious.foxReview

10/17/2019- Fyrekatz BlogReview

10/18/2019- The Try EverythingExcerpt

 

Week Four:

10/21/2019- Novel NoviceExcerpt

10/22/2019- Nerdophiles Review

10/23/2019- Southern Girl BookaholicReview

10/24/2019- Two points of interestReview

10/25/2019- Little Red ReadsReview

 

Week Five:

10/28/2019- PopTheButterfly ReadsReview

10/29/2019- Savings in SecondsReview

10/30/2019- Wonder StruckReview

10/31/2019- Satisfaction for Insatiable ReadersReview

 

Giveaway Details:

3 winners will receive a finished copy of SAM SAVES THE NIGHT, US Only.

 

Enter here.

‘Voltron: Legendary Defender’ Review

Unlike a lot of my other reviews where I usually start off with the series’s genre, number of episodes/seasons before rambling on about the rest of the review, I wanted to start this one off a different way.

I binged-watched Voltron: Legendary defender in the matter of less than a week, and I must say, I have fallen head over heels with this cartoon. I never watched the original one (it wasn’t a thing in my country), but I was glad that there was a remake, because if not I would never have watched this cartoon.

I mainly like cartoons that are pretty romance-centric like Miraculous Ladybug, Star vs the forces of evil, Tangled: the series and etc… But Voltron: Legendary Defender didn’t actually have much of that and it wasn’t romance-centric at all. I fell in love with the characters and the plot of this cartoon and even after a few days, heck, for the rest of my life, I don’t think I’ll ever forget this cartoon, that was how inspirational and how in love I was with it.

So even before I start the review, I’m just going to ask fans of sci-fi and adventure genres and those who like friendship-centric shows to definitely give this series a go!

It ripped my heart out and sew it back, and before I knew it, it ripped my heart out again, tossed it into a black hole before my heart worm-holed back to me. So, I was practically and basically a mess of tears.

*May contain some spoilers, but I’m trying my best to review all seasons without any spoilers. So there may be mention of names and revelations but not in detail, of course.

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Book review: Rebel Seoul (Rebel Seoul #1) by Axie Oh (3 stars)

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Rebel Seoul (Rebel Seoul #1) by Axie Oh

Genre: YA, fantasy, romance, sci-fi -dystopian

Rating: 3/5 stars

(Synopsis from Goodreads)

After a great war, the East Pacific is in ruins. In brutal Neo Seoul, where status comes from success in combat, ex-gang member Lee Jaewon is a talented pilot rising in the ranks of the academy. Abandoned as a kid in the slums of Old Seoul by his rebel father, Jaewon desires only to escape his past and prove himself a loyal soldier of the Neo State.

When Jaewon is recruited into the most lucrative weapons development division in Neo Seoul, he is eager to claim his best shot at military glory. But the mission becomes more complicated when he meets Tera, a test subject in the government’s supersoldier project. Tera was trained for one purpose: to pilot one of the lethal God Machines, massive robots for a never-ending war.

With secret orders to report on Tera, Jaewon becomes Tera’s partner, earning her reluctant respect. But as respect turns to love, Jaewon begins to question his loyalty to an oppressive regime that creates weapons out of humans. As the project prepares to go public amidst rumors of a rebellion, Jaewon must decide where he stands—as a soldier of the Neo State, or a rebel of the people.

Pacific Rim meets Korean action dramas in this mind-blowing, New Visions Award-winning science fiction debut.

(Review)

(DISCLAIMER: All thoughts and opinions are my own.)

Imagine a futuristic Korea with weapons. Imagine LifeL1K3 combined with Warcross.

I liked the pacing of the book, but did feel that the romance was insta-y. This book should totally be a kdrama because I would totally watch it!

It had great world building and story, but it wasn’t very memorable for me and I didn’t emotionally connect to the characters strong enough to continue the series.

Have you read this book? What are your thoughts and opinions? Leave a comment down below! 🙂

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Book review: The weight of our sky by Hanna Alkaf (4 stars)

“Where we plant our feet is where we must hold up the sky.”

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The weight of our sky by Hanna Alkaf

Genre: YA, historical

Rating: 4/5 stars

(Synopsis from Goodreads)

A music-loving teen with OCD does everything she can to find her way back to her mother during the historic race riots in 1969 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, in this heart-pounding literary debut.

Melati Ahmad looks like your typical moviegoing, Beatles-obsessed sixteen-year-old. Unlike most other sixteen-year-olds though, Mel also believes that she harbors a djinn inside her, one who threatens her with horrific images of her mother’s death unless she adheres to an elaborate ritual of counting and tapping to keep him satisfied.

But there are things that Melati can’t protect her mother from. On the evening of May 13th, 1969, racial tensions in her home city of Kuala Lumpur boil over. The Chinese and Malays are at war, and Mel and her mother become separated by a city in flames.

With a 24-hour curfew in place and all lines of communication down, it will take the help of a Chinese boy named Vincent and all of the courage and grit in Melati’s arsenal to overcome the violence on the streets, her own prejudices, and her djinn’s surging power to make it back to the one person she can’t risk losing.

**Content warnings: Racism, graphic violence, on-page death, OCD and anxiety triggers.**

(Review)

(DISCLAIMER: All thoughts and opinions are my own.)

Honestly, this is the first book I’ve ever seen trigger warnings for and I’m so grateful for it as someone with anxiety.

This book has a story that hits close to home, I live in the neighbouring country, Singapore who had some similar riots as well.

I was totally disgusted by Frankie, who was racist and even kills an animal in cold blood.

This book was so well written that I’m speechless, it was also really goo and so emotional. Honestly I didn’t have any intentions of picking up this book, but then I saw that a ton of people were recommending it and after reading it, I have to join in and totally agree with them.

Have you read this book? What are your thoughts and opinions? Leave a comment down below! 🙂

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Book review: Reign the earth (The elementae #1) by A.C. Gaughen (4 stars)

“You are desert born, and you will never be alone.”

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Reign the earth (The elementae #1) by A.C. Gaughen

Genre: YA, romance, fantasy

Rating: 4/5 stars

(Synopsis from Goodreads)

Shalia is a proud daughter of the desert, but after years of devastating war with the adjoining kingdom, her people are desperate for peace. Willing to trade her freedom to ensure the safety of her family, Shalia becomes Queen of the Bonelands.

But she soon learns that her husband, Calix, is motivated only by his desire to exterminate the Elementae—mystical people who can control earth, wind, air, and fire. Even more unsettling are Shalia’s feelings for her husband’s brother, which unleash a power over the earth she never knew she possessed—a power that could get her killed. As rumors of a rebellion against Calix spread, Shalia must choose between the last chance for peace and her own future as an Elementae.

This intense, richly drawn high-fantasy by the author of Scarletwill hold readers spellbound.

(Review)

(DISCLAIMER: All thoughts and opinions are my own.)

I’ve been anticipating this book and it gives me Red Queen vibes.

I was very upset at the non consensual sex and that there is physical abuse and do not condone it, but I do agree that it pushed the story forward and makes Shalia’s character arc grow stronger.

Overall, I actually really enjoyed this book as it focused on female strength, family, love and friendship. But definitely go in with fair warning that this book is dark.

Have you read this book? What are your thoughts and opinions? Leave a comment down below! 🙂

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Book review: The never tilting world (The never tilting world #1) by Rin Chupeco (2 stars)

(I received a free Review copy from Edelweiss for a voluntary and honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own)

“A demoness is what men call a goddess they cannot control.”

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The never tilting world (The never tilting world #1) by Rin Chupeco

Genre: YA, Fantasy, Romance (LGBT)

Rating: 2/5 stars

(Synopsis from Goodreads)

Generations of twin goddesses have long ruled Aeon. But seventeen years ago, one sister’s betrayal defied an ancient prophecy and split their world in two. The planet ceased to spin, and a Great Abyss now divides two realms: one cloaked in perpetual night, the other scorched by an unrelenting sun.

While one sister rules Aranth—a frozen city surrounded by a storm-wracked sea —her twin inhabits the sand-locked Golden City. Each goddess has raised a daughter, and each keeps her own secrets about her sister’s betrayal.

But when shadowy forces begin to call their daughters, Odessa and Haidee, back to the site of the Breaking, the two young goddesses —along with a powerful healer from Aranth, and a mouthy desert scavenger —set out on separate journeys across treacherous wastelands, desperate to heal their broken world. No matter the sacrifice it demands.

(Review)

(DISCLAIMER: All thoughts and opinions are my own.)

There are mainly 4 POVs, Odessa, Tianlan (Lan), Arjun and Haidee.

I definitely took a while to grasp the world building (because I didn’t reread the synopsis when I started the eARC), but once I grasped it, it was definitely interesting.

Unfortunately, I found it slow paced and I kept putting it down. I wanted to like this book so badly, but I didn’t. Though I have tried to read The bone witch by the same author and never finished the book, so I think it really just wasn’t my cup of tea. I did not care for the characters and story, but loved the concept and it was really well written.

Have you read this book? What are your thoughts and opinions? Leave a comment down below! 🙂

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Book review: Need (Need #1) by Carrie Jones (2.5 stars)

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Need (Need #1) by Carrie Jones

Genre: YA, romance, fantasy

Rating: 2.5/5 stars

(Synopsis from Goodreads)

Pain shoots through my head. Fireworks. Explosions. All inside my brain. The white world goes dark and I know what’s about to happen.

Zara White suspects there’s a freaky guy semi-stalking her. She’s also obsessed with phobias. And it’s true, she hasn’t exactly been herself since her stepfather died. But exiling her to shivery Maine to live with her grandmother? That seems a bit extreme. The move is supposed to help her stay sane…but Zara’s pretty sure her mom just can’t deal with her right now.

She couldn’t be more wrong. Turns out the semi-stalker is not a figment of Zara’s overactive imagination. In fact, he’s still following her, leaving behind an eerie trail of gold dust. There’s something not right – not human – in this sleepy Maine town, and all signs point to Zara.

In this creepy, compelling breakout novel, Carrie Jones delivers romance, suspense, and a creature you never thought you’d have to fear.

(Review)

(DISCLAIMER: All thoughts and opinions are my own.)

This book was definitely mysterious and creepy, I did feel as though the events were just all thrown together.It was interesting that Zara names all her fears, it’s her coping mechanism and I think that made her more compelling and interesting.

I felt that this book had a great concept, but it was badly executed for me personally.

Have you read this book? What are your thoughts and opinions? Leave a comment down below! 🙂

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