Reviews


REVIEW BY The Romance Reviews   

After Midnight

by Lynn Viehl
- rating

"Review from Bridget"

I have to admit, I'm rather glad that young adult novels of this kind weren't being published when I was younger. I'd never have had a social life. Or done my homework. Or graduated. I would have been too entranced with this book to do anything productive, completely captivated by this world of mysteries and memories and first loves. In truth, I was just as engrossed now as I would have been then. Having read most of Lynn Veihl's adult series, I was looking forward to her foray into young adult publishing, and am pleased to say she has outdone herself, yet again.

Catlyn Youngblood has always been an outsider. She and her two brothers, the surly, reticent Gray and fiercely protective Patrick, have moved all over the country since the death of their parents when Cat was very young. As a result, she has never had many friends, save the horses that her family has kept all her life. This time, they have moved into an old farmhouse in Lost Lake, Florida, a town that seems far too small for all the secrets it holds. Between the hostilities of the students at her new school and the increasingly odd behavior of her brothers, Cat is beginning to feel more alone than ever.

Until she meets her dark boy. Tall, beautiful and aloof, Jesse Raven immediately becomes the center of Cat's world. She becomes wrapped up in the mystery of him—the house on the island in the middle of Lost Lake that his family never leaves, the lingering stories about a family of Romanian circus performers who founded the town generations ago that are somehow related to the modern-day Raven family…and the curious condition that keeps Jesse from ever seeing the light of the sun…

It is in trying to save Jesse from the pain of the sunrise that their relationship is discovered. The two find themselves separated by their respective families, told that they must never speak again. It seems that there is bad blood between the Ravens and the Youngbloods that Cat is desperate to overcome. Following the discovery of a pack of letters written by her mother, she begins to fill in some of her family's missing history—not just her parents' secret love affair, but the strange secrets of a man named Van Helsing, and the gift (or curse) he passed on to his descendents. But, try as she might, Cat cannot unlock the key to her family's past. Because no matter how hard she tries, there are things she just can't seem to remember, pieces of memory that keep getting snatched away...as if someone close to her was trying to keep her in the dark…

I think there is a definite risk for any new books about teen girls and vampires being compared to others that have come before (ahem). Thankfully, this book deals swiftly and decisively with this issue by blowing any comparisons out of the water.

Catlyn is a strong, resourceful main character with confidence in herself, even in the face of some monumental betrayals by those she loves dearly. She has the same foibles and insecurities of any teenage girl, but nonetheless has a heart of gold and an unbreakable spirit that had me cheering for her all the way.

And while the breed of vampire in this book was obviously mellowed a bit for the sake of age-appropriate consumption, Jesse and the Raven family are truly creatures of the night. They fear the sun and avoid iron and garlic, they are cold and beautiful and ageless. More than these stereotypes, though, Jesse is a genuinely complex character, who encompasses all the great qualities of literary vampires. He is tender, sweet and wise, and at the same time, incredibly strong, violent and hungry. It is a rarity to find a character who exudes such danger and attraction in equal measure, but Jesse steals every scene that he enters. The balance between his human insecurities and his immortal, possessive nature is a very tenuous one and I am really excited to watch how his relationship with Cat changes them both.

It is also rare to find a story like this with such interesting depth and complexity. It is steeped in the atmosphere and tradition of the best vampire literature and is a worthy addition to the canon. It is a book that has few real bad guys, and even fewer heroes. Instead, there is the tangled history of two ancient families, the weight of their destinies that threatens to crush each of them. It is a necessary evil of the genre that some plot points get tied up a bit swiftly, or perhaps too neatly, but be ready: there are ultimately very few simple characters or straightforward answers. Details are crucial, especially when it comes to the issue of Cat's memory problems. But stick with it. I can guarantee that, like me, you'll be gasping out loud at the final few plot twists, and begging for the promised second installment of this immensely promising trilogy.


REVIEW BY The Romance Reviews   

Dream Walker

by J. R. Thomas
- rating

"Review from Renee Rearden"

Dreams—we all have them. Are they memories from our past, images of our daily experiences or visions of what's to come?

For the last year, Jay Gibbs has been wrestling with the meanings of his odd dreams. They're full of wolves, the voice of the Ancient one, and a beautiful, young woman that's captured his attention.

Jay's dreams become stranger and more intense once he graduates from high school and moves to his grandfather's ranch. He begins feeling others' emotions, and develops an uncanny connection with the wolves on the mountain. When things he's dreamed start to happen, he's convinced his dreams are really visions.

As Jay learns more about the wolves, his Cherokee background, and his family's connection to the land, he discovers he must choose between a life in the modern world he's grown up in or follow a different path and protect a timeless secret his family has safeguarded for centuries.

I enjoyed reading this paranormal, young adult story. Though the beginning was a bit confusing as to time and place, a touch of adventure and romance marked the characters' journey and led to a satisfying conclusion.

My only real frustrations with the novel were the adults treating Jay as if he were a young boy instead of a man, and some of Jay's language/dialogue seemed stilted or uncommon for an 18-year old to say.

Those frustrations aside, this is a great novel about the love of a family supporting a young man as he comes of age and faces difficult choices that require character, strength and integrity.


REVIEW BY The Romance Reviews   

Love Immortal

by Linnea Hall
- rating

"Review from Lisa Jo"

LOVE IMMORTAL starts out incredibly strong but falls hopelessly flat by the end. While Ms Hall has a great talent for setting up a wonderful story with romantic characters, it is the plot execution and completion of the novel that took a serious detour from the original beauty of this novel.

Jewell McKean, a young woman recently out of nursing school, finds herself fascinated with the man brought into the ER from a recent accident. As first, she's horrified by the fact that they could not save him, but minutes later, he miraculously comes back to life. Forming a personal interest in his recovery, Jewell and this patient, Collin Sykes, forge a bond during his stay at the hospital.

Once he is dismissed, they continue their relationship despite the protests from Collin's Uncle Percy. Percy has good reason to discourage Collin's attachment to Jewell. Collin is oblivious to the fact that he is a descendant of the Templar Knights, which means he is immortal. That alone should make any relationship with her impossible, but there is also the small matter of the Obsidian Knights. They are a small group out to murder the last of the Templar Knights for defiling the Holy Grail and Collin is their main target. Not only is Collin in danger now, but Jewell is as well. Their relationship not only must struggle with the fact that Collin is immortal, but the threat of the Obsidian Knights as well to see if true love can prevail.

An interesting premise, LOVE IMMORTAL is really a young adult romance about the difficulty of true love and who can't relate with that? Still, the novel has its moments and it had its shortcomings. Ms Hall is not shy about establishing the fact of her story paralleling the ever-popular Stephanie Meyer Twilight series. The heroine is in fact reading the novel while living out the scenario in her real life. The main difference is the fact that instead of a vampire lifestyle for our hero, we have an immortal and historical Templar Knight for the lead. It was a interesting and different idea that for quite awhile had me completely convinced of its probability of succeeding.

The characters had their moments. The beginning was filled with hopeful and innocent love between a boy and a girl, engaging the reader in their delightful awkward romance. Yet near the end, the book took a strange twist. Colin's uncle did things that I would find unforgivable in any situation, yet his nephew found it in his heart to forgive him. Which made absolutely no sense to me, but after learning more about Colin's character, it did not surprise me anymore.

Colin was the boy of every girl's dream at first, but became creepily obsessive by the end. Which in some ways made him a perfect match for Jewell as she became a depressed shell of a person, if he was more than six feet away from her. All the characters seemed to fall apart at the seams by the book's end. I just didn't know what to think.

The ending is what dropped this book from three stars to two and what is terrible about that fact is the ending was probably one hundred words or less. I look at any book as a journey...somewhat like a walk along a path. The enjoyment of the book depends on the difficulty or ease of the journey. LOVE IMMORTAL took me on a pleasant stroll through the first half that I quiet enjoyed. By the middle, I felt like it was a bit of an uphill climb but persevered because of my enjoyment of the first half. The ending? Well, the ending felt like I had just made it to the top of the hill only to discover a drastic and terribly fall off a cliff. It wasn't entertaining, it wasn't thoughtful and it wasn't a conclusive end. It was abrupt, unsatisfying and illogical. I felt like that story had been completely abandoned and concluded as quickly as inefficiently as possible.

A part of me wondered if two different people wrote this book. The first half was so impressive, I really expected a stunning read. If you had asked me half way through what I expected to rate this novel, I would have determined this a possible four star book. The second half just came out of nowhere and did not live up to the expectations built up from the first half. If Ms Hall's work is consistent with the quality I discovered in the beginning of LOVE IMMORTAL, I would not hesitate to read her work again.


REVIEW BY The Romance Reviews   

The Sweet Far Thing

by Libba Bray
- rating

"Review from Celine"

This book was horrible. It was amazing. I almost cried when it was over. I wanted to throw it across the room and scream to it. I wanted to hold it in my arms and never let it go again.

I can't write a coherent review about The Sweet Far Thing. The title is perfect for this book. It's such a bittersweet story, with the perfect ending. It lacked the pace Rebel Angels, the second book in this series, had but to make up for that, TSFT had a building sense of impending doom.

In the last book of the Gemma Doyle trilogy, we see our Victorian heroine struggle with all the trouble that has accumulated throughout the series. After her mother died in mysterious death, Gemma discovered there is a world beyond ours, a world of magic called the realms. But the Order, the protectors of the realms, had bound the magic, and no one could enter the beautiful realms any more.

In her previous adventures, Gemma has bound the magic to herself, not knowing at all what consequences this might have. Now, she must face the creatures of the realms together with her best friends, and make a pact, so that all the magic will be split equally between the races. The problem is, not all creatures in the realms are kind and harmless. There is trouble stirring in the Winterlands, and Gemma is the only one who can stop it from spreading…

The first half of the book was quite a bore, nothing much happens, but then again, that was how life was in that time. There was nothing to do for ladies, except for sitting around, have some tea and gossip. Attend some dances and get married with good fortune. You were not supposed to have an opinion of some sort, and your whole life was planned for you before you were even ten. Libba Bray shows this helplessness perfectly, and what happens if you just do not fit in this society. It makes me once again glad to live in this period of time, where it's okay to be different, and where it is considered normal for a girl to have a voice in her own life.

The realms were beautiful. I loved the growing darkness, the sense that everything they've worked for is falling apart, that Gemma is growing mad, the line between nightmare and reality is thinning...

Gemma makes horrible choices. But then again, can we blame her? What would you do if so many people (and other creatures) depend on you, while you have absolutely no idea what you are up against? She is absolutely lost in all her responsibilities, without anyone to help her. Of course, Felicity and Ann, her closest friends are still there, but even there are some problems. 'Cause well, they just can't understand how great a burden it is for having all the magic of the realms bound inside of you. The sense of being misunderstood and being all alone is very strong in this book. Most of the time Gemma is brooding over what she is supposed to do. And I think this is portrayed in a very realistic manner. If I was in her shoes, I would have collapsed under the pressure a long time ago.

This is a beautiful story about strong girls. And at the same time I have no idea if I even liked it. One thing I can certainly say: this was one hell of a read.


REVIEW BY The Romance Reviews   

Blood Of The White Witch

by Lacey Weatherford
- rating

"Review from Belinda Boring"

Reading this book was an incredible experience for me. I'd read the first two books THE TROUBLE WITH SPELLS and THE DEMON KISS and absolutely adored them. By the time I began reading BLOOD OF THE WHITE WITCH, I was already head over heels for the resident bad boy, Vance Mangum, and was absolutely SOLD on the series. In my naivete, I felt that the books couldn't possibly get any better because in my mind it was already perfect. I was undeniably WRONG. This book is hands down the best I've read of all three.

Being the emotional reader that I am, my hope is always that a book causes me to feel something, anything, whether it's the rush of excitement that comes when a twist reveals itself in the story or the dip in the stomach when the lead guy moves in and claims the girl he loves. I knew that reading this book would be an emotional one but nothing prepared me for how intense it would be or how incredible the pull would be as it completely SUCKED me into the story.

I've said before in my reviews of the first two books how they had reached in and held my heart hostage? Well, those books pale in comparison to the way this book moved me. There were so many twists to the story, so many possibilities. At any given time, I was experiencing complete happiness and giddiness for Portia and Vance, shock and horror at some of the situations they found themselves in and complete devastation when the love they had for each other was once again tested almost to its breaking point. All I can do now is sit back and sigh, totally satisfied from being entertained so completely

I loved the way Vance and Portia move together, the way they naturally gravitate towards each other. The more you read through the series, the more you realize how perfect they are for each other and it's really difficult to not think of one without thinking of the other. They are both fiercely protective of each other, which is a direct result of the challenges they've faced. They have been through so much and the beginning of the book starts off with a celebration that reminds you how wonderful it is to be in love. I LOVED watching how they were with each other. I loved the message that regardless of whether the sky is falling and the world is on the verge of destruction, there is always time for passion, for tenderness, for devotion. They're definitely one of my top book couples.

Portia is really growing into the role of an amazing lead female. She shows a great strength in character now that she is more confident in her magical abilities and her relationship with Vance. She knows what she wants and what she needs to do to get it. She has complete faith in her love for Vance and does everything she can to protect him. She truly is Vance's equal in this book and it was AMAZING to watch. You need to know that my heart went out to her in this book because I knew that inevitably there's only so much a person can take and only so much they can give before they break. Her limits were constantly being challenged and I appreciated the emotions I felt through her, as I was able to get a much better look at the world through her eyes.

Vance Mangum. That really does say it all, right? Just the sound of his name should give you an indication of what kind of character of he is, but if not, let me share it with you. He is by far the best bad boy I've found in all of the YA genre. I know that may hurt Dimitri's feelings (resident bad boy from the Vampire Academy series) but I have to call it as I see it. You can't not read Vance and not have your knees weaken even just a little. I love the passion he feels for Portia and his total lack of fear in letting the entire world know how much he adores her. He leaves her with no doubt whatsoever that he is hers and that he would go to the end of the world for her. There were so many scenes in this book that had me totally in love with him and I have to say, as the lover of the evil bad boy, Vance has ALL the potential of driving me completely over the edge into bad boy Heaven. He fights his demon tendencies but still he struggles. The moment his eyes flash that sexy red, I'm swooning and I am DESPERATE to know what happens with him in the next book.

There were so many Vance moments I loved in the book but the two that I can safely share without ruining anything is one from the opening chapters where Vance can't take it one moment longer and pulls Portia into an empty room and RAVISHES her up against the wall. Oh yeah, incredibly HOT. The other is when they are staying in Scotland and Vance finds himself with a very traditional piece of clothing. Let me whet your appetite a little and say Vance as a Highlander is an unbelievably SEXY image to have. I dare anyone to read the series, especially this book, and NOT fall hopelessly in love with him.

When you read this book, prepare yourself for the roller coaster. This is Lacey Weatherford at her finest and I'm chomping at the bit to see what she has in store for Portia and Vance. It couldn't possibly get any better, could it? If reading this book is any way to guess, I think book 4 is going to blow me over and seal my fate as one of the greatest fan of the Of Witches & Warlock series. It's a definite drop everything you¡¯re doing, sell a kidney if you have to, it's that important that you read the book. Enjoy!


REVIEW BY The Romance Reviews   

Last Sacrifice

by Richelle Mead
- rating

"Review from Michelle R"

Rose's story ends with a bang -- and a sigh, and gadoodles of laughs.

Vampire Academy fans can finally relax. All the loose ends we have been living with the past few years have been neatly tied up in the final book of the Vampire Academy series, LAST SACRIFICE. And just to make sure that the creepy, satisfied smile I've been wearing since release day remains, Richelle Mead has announced there will be a spin off series focusing on the tales of some of the secondary characters in Vampire Academy. Whoot!

All those new to the series, yes, you can probably get away with reading this book first or as a stand-alone. But why? Just don't do it. The six books work together to make every comma and kiss worthy of savoring in this amazing finale. All the characters we love to love (Dimitri anyone?) and the ones we love to hate (Can I hear it for Queen Tatiana?) have their moments as Rose moves from all that defined her milestones as she grew up, into the mature, capable and steady adult we leave at the close.

This is the book that defines what Rose's future will be like now that she is a graduate of the Academy. She's been accused of murdering Queen Tatiana, Dimitri lost a big part of who he was while he was Strigoi (including his ability to love), Adrian has become Rose's rock, and Lissa is no longer the shadow behind Rose, but the Royal worthy of that protection.

In their combined quest to discover who the true murderer is and to give Lissa the power to vote on the council, resolutions to all the conflicts and questions unfold. There are more twist and turns than a sailor's knot. Just when you think you have it all figured out, surprise, think again.

I can normally read a book or two a day. This one took me four, yes FOUR, days to savor. I just had to take every single word slow and cherish the whole experience. I want to give a big shout out to Richelle Mead, and a Texas-sized thank-you hug for such a joyful journey and satisfying ending. Thank you for keeping the ride going. I look forward to visiting the world of the moroi again and learning more about some of those who intrigued me along the way.

I'm not much of a fan of Young Adult books. In fact, you can typically find my reviews in the erotica section. Still, Ms Mead captivated me with Rose. The tone was always mature, but most importantly at the center was a truly complex character in a well-scripted and interesting world. There was nothing young, naive or simplistic about Rose Hathaway, making her captivating.

And we can't forget the many hawt men of the Academy. Dimitri, Rose's sexy guardian trainer who can protect my body any day of the week; Adrian, the spoiled rich boy who falls for the girl on the wrong side of the tracks, and Christian, the tortured emo dude who manages to snag the attention and love of a princess. What's not to love, right?

Vampire Academy is a wonderful series, and LAST SACRFICE continues that legacy. New fans, start with book one and enjoy the journey. Long-time fans, prepare to smile, laugh, cry, cringe and sigh. It's all here, complete with the most perfect ending I could have imagined. Enjoy!


REVIEW BY The Romance Reviews   

Angelfire

by Courtney Allison Moulton
- rating

"Review from Belinda Boring"

Most people say that it's the cover that first catches their eye and pulls them in. Some say that if for no other reason, a great cover was the only reason they opened the book in the first place. For me, the sole reason why I chose to read ANGELFIRE was for its amazing blurb. I remember reading and thinking to myself "I HAVE to read this", because the whole idea of a teen girl turned warrior playing an important role in a battle between Heaven and Hell, with angels and soul sucking reapers sounded too good to resist. The blurb spoke to me, telling me that it would be an exciting read but now that I've finished it, I realize that the story gave me so much more. Aside from the action filled twists and turns, it gave a truly sweet and romantic story of a young girl coming again into an extraordinary legacy and meeting the boy that has stood by her side for a multitude of lifetimes. It was beautiful. It was heartbreaking and I couldn't help but enjoy the experience.

ANGELFIRE tells the story of Ellie who, on her seventeenth birthday, discovers that she's more than the average teenage girl facing every day teenage problems. Little did she know that her world was about to be shaken and set on a different path through meeting Will, the mysterious boy that kept turning up trying to talk with her. He claims she is special, that she is the warrior meant to rid the world of reapers – monsters who eat humans and take their souls to Hell. Not wanting to believe him, she tries to ignore him but along with the nightmares she has and an encounter with an actual reaper, Ellie has no choice but to accept the facts – she is the Preliator, the only mortal in the world that has the power to kill reapers.

Destined to reincarnate each time she's killed, Ellie has once again come into her powers and Will is her Guardian who has sworn to protect and defend her. With her memories slow to return, Ellie begins training, testing her strength and battle skills. Too soon, Ellie is forced to confront the enemy and learns that Bastian, a powerful reaper is searching for a dangerous weapon that, he hopes when he turns it loose, will destroy Ellie's soul, effectively stopping her from reincarnating. She needs to stop the threat but at the same time must deal with shock after shock as things begin to unravel, revealing truths she never saw coming.

ANGELFIRE is an amazing story that really captured my attention from the beginning and held my heart by the end. The author has a very relaxed style of writing which made it easy to follow and I really appreciated how my head didn't hurt as she introduced the mythology that comes with angels. It was important information but she did it in a way that I didn't feel like it was all just thrown at me with the hope that something stuck. I was able to understand it without having to stop throughout the book and reread parts because I'd become confused. There was a great flow to the story which made it easy for me to stay part of the storyline and again, I just really loved the whole concept of the story. It was a great take on the battle between Heaven and Hell and the power that one person has in holding back the tide of evil.

Ellie was such a great character. I can't even begin to imagine how mind blowing it must have been to have this stranger approach you with the story that you are this powerful warrior that needs to go out and fight evil. I loved that although she doubted him at first, when she realized he was telling the truth, as much as it terrified her, she didn't stay in denial but faced it head on. I think that's what impressed me the most about Ellie – she was having to fight without her full memories, with a lot of questions about who she was and incredible FEAR but she stepped up to the plate. She didn't hide, she didn't complain, she didn't say "Umm.. too bad I don't want to." She was incredibly human despite the fact she had angelic powers and I can't wait to see what happens next for her.

Will. Now here was a boy who broke my heart. He was Ellie's guardian and has had to watch her die over and over through the centuries, each time having to search for her again to protect and help her come into her powers. He lives solely for her, because of her and it just seemed so tragic to me that it seemed he was defined solely for his purpose – Ellie. He lived and breathed for her and I loved being able to learn more about him as more of who he is was revealed. My heart truly did connect with him because he seemed so noble but at the same time had this sense of being oh so tortured. He had an incredible sense of duty, but unfortunately his heart became involved, and I really felt for him as it warred inside of him. There was a depth to Will I enjoyed and, like Ellie, I can't wait to see what's in store for him because I know there's so much more to him. I love what I've seen so far and now I'm hungry for more.

This really was an amazing story and one I think readers – teens and adults – will love and connect with. It provided a great experience for those that enjoy storylines filled with good versus evil battles, brave heroines and protective heroes who fall for each other and are in danger from not just their enemies but the breaking of their hearts. There's a great balance to the book, the intense moments being tempered by the sweet and I just can't stop smiling about how much I liked it. Definitely a book to read and add to your bookshelves. Happy reading!!


REVIEW BY The Romance Reviews   

Sugar Rush

by Kimber An
- rating

"Review from Danielle G."

SUGAR RUSH is an extremely original and well thought-out young adult novel. It follows Ophelia Dawson who, because of her diabetic blood that is extra sweet for vampires, finds herself directly in the middle of a turf war between Newbloods and Oldbloods, two different types of vampires. Her only allies are a newly created vampire and a human who helps diabetics escape when the vampires capture them.

Fans of young adult novels should love this book, as it is extremely original and has a very unique and different way at looking vampires. Due to the main character's personality, vampires are looked at much more scientifically then ever before.

The plot is well written, and after the first couple chapters, the book becomes too addictive to put down even for a moment. Other than that, the only real complaint anyone could make about the plot is that SUGAR RUSH leaves everything very up in the air. However, this is a common practice for a series so as to make readers even more impatient to read the next one. One of the best things about the plot is that it is paced really well and doesn't feel even the slightest bit rushed.

The characters are interesting and most enjoyable to read about, however it was a shame to see the last of some of them. As it is perhaps too easy to get fond of the characters, as they were portrayed in a way that they felt almost real.

In conclusion, Sugar Rush is an extremely enjoyable young adult novel, and with a great plot and fantastic characters, it is probably the most original young adult novel of 2010.


REVIEW BY The Romance Reviews   

The Secret of the Emerald Sea

by Heather Matthews
- rating

"Review from Debbie"

Who doesn't like a good fantasy story? A story that also includes a great adventure and romance. Heather Matthews has done a marvelous job of writing such a descriptive story that I actually felt like I was part of it. I could see the scenery and the magical beauty under the surface of the sea in my mind as I was reading. Thus begins this truly captivating tale that will draw young and adult alike and you have to keep reading to see what is going to happen next.

Jane is the main character. She lost her mother and doesn't know who her father is. She is being raised by her grandmother who forbids her to go near the sea and won't even let her take swimming lessons for fear she will learn the secret. She's fourteen years old and has always been drawn to the sea. She doesn't know why she feels such a connection, especially when it rains.

One night when it is raining, she can no longer deny her body's unnatural pull to the sea. She defies her grandmother and goes to the water. Imagine her surprise that as she steps into the water, she is not afraid and moreover, it comforts her. She sees beautiful swirling colors. Imagine her shock when she goes further into the water and suddenly realizes her legs have disappeared and she is a mermaid. I don't want to give any further important parts or the story, but along the way you meet such mythical characters as Neptune, Cupid, Venus, Diana and a few others. What an enjoyable story this was.

Ms. Matthews understands the elements necessary to keep a reader going. The dialogue seems so real. The vividness of the sights, sounds and even the smells so many times put me right there with the characters and into the middle of the story.

I would highly recommend this story to anyone who loves a good fantasy and an adventure that is full of surprises.


REVIEW BY The Romance Reviews   

The Trouble With Spells

by Lacey Weatherford
- rating

"Review from Belinda Boring"

What a way to begin a new series. Lacey Weatherford has created an addicting new world where young love and magic go hand in hand. Her characters Vance and Portia show all the joys of new love and the heartbreak that comes when that love is so cruelly tested.

From the moment each character is introduced, you fall in love with them and you become intimately involved in the adventure they are taking. Portia is the sweet girl who is told on her 16th birthday that she is a witch with powers that seem to go beyond what those around her expected. You watch her take those first steps of wonder as the world of magic is opened up before her eyes. At that same moment, Portia's eyes are also opened up to a different kind of magic in the form resident bad boy , Vance Mangum. He is the epitome of all that was good about going to highschool. In Vance, Portia finds budding romance and the passion that sparks between them astounds them both.

It was a pleasure to read about them and I'm extremely interested in seeing how they're love and commitment to each other develops. Lacey Weatherford writes a well written story and the ideas introduced will appeal to both the young and not so young reader. The book grabs hold of you from the very beginning and leaves you breathless by the final word. Of Witches and Warlocks - The Trouble With Spells is an amazing read and an essential additional to your library and the paranormal genre.

*As a quick side note: due to circumstance beyond the author's control, this book does contain some grammatical errors. As found in a response she made on Goodreads, this is what the author shared about it - "Just FYI there was a mix up and the publisher put an unedited draft in the original book. It has since been reprinted!" Please don't let this stop yo from enjoying the book*


REVIEW BY The Romance Reviews   

The Demon Kiss

by Lacey Weatherford
- rating

"Review from Belinda Boring"

The Demon Kiss continues the journey in Portia and Vance's discovery of each other and their magic, with events that seem impossibly difficult and relentless in trying to pull them apart. Having overcome the danger of a near demon conversion, Portia and Vance embark on the journey of facing Vance's father, with the hopes of finally laying to rest the threat that hangs over Vance's fate. As I read each page, I found myself pulled deeper into the story and my emotions became tied to theirs. I loved the dynamics the author developed further with Vance and Portia and I have to say that they are rapidly becoming one of my favorite couples. Portia is more committed to doing all she can to support Vance and Vance is more determined to protect Portia at all costs. Both

Portia continued to grow into a strong character and I loved watching as she became more assertive and secure in herself and the relationship she had with Vance. She wasn’t afraid to do whatever it took to protect Vance and finally rid him of his father’s influence. She had a kind of selflessness that I found incredibly appealing and a tenacity that had me cheering. She is definitely not a character who hides when things get tough, always there on the frontline eager to do her part.

Vance Mangum is everything a bad boy should be and will always and forever guarantee a gush and sigh from me. I loved him in The Trouble With Spells but here, I absolutely fell apart with giddy excitement as I began to see a more edgy side of him. He was still the same charismatic guy you just can’t help be drawn to and you get a much closer look into his tortured past. You need to know I just loved reading how he was with Portia – there were moments of incredible passion and I did mini swoons each time he showed the tenderness of his heart. I could gush about him for hours and I’m impatiently waiting to see more of him because trust me when I say that Vance is delicious.

One of my favorite scenes occur when Portia and Vance come face to face with the evilness that is Vance's father, Damien Cummings and as a villain, Damien definitely delivers the goods. Even through the pages he made my skin crawl and that's what I loved so much about reading this book. Not only did the author have my skin crawling, she also had me blushing through the kissing, sighing through the tenderness, laughing at the humor and cheering in those moments where Vance and Portia needed it the most. She has written the book in a way that engages both the mind and heart of the reader, taking them on a ride that they won't easily forget.

It was such an amazing read with all the twists and turns that had me holding onto my seat, never knowing where the story would take me. Lacey wrote in such a way that it was almost effortless to fall into the story and see the scenes as they unfolded, experiencing each moment alongside the characters. I found myself so engrossed that I couldn’t read fast enough and once I was finished, I began the frantic search for the release date of Lacey's third book, Blood Of The White Witch.

I absolutely adored this book and gush about it to all who will listen. If I could, I’d give everyone this book so they can see for themselves just how fabulous Portia and Vance are. A definite keeper for me and a book I’ll read for many years to come.


Starr Gone
A Starr gone. A team betrayed.

You never know who your true friends are until a gun’s pointed at you. One will take a bullet, and the other will pull the trigger. Starr learned that lesson the hard way.

The perfect smile. A killer attitude. General Treadwell wanted nothing more than to turn Starr Bishop into the ideal assassin, but she’s far more valuable as Jessica Chamberlain, granddaughter and heir to Chamberlain Chocolates. Luckily, he’s found two enthusiastic replacements. They lack Starr’s intelligence, but no matter, they possess their own weapons of persuasion along with a flair for the dramatic, and that’s never a bad thing.

Di, along with Christian, Frank, Ben and Coda, are determined to keep Starr safe, but the depths of betrayal crack the very foundation of the team. When Starr becomes a pawn in a game of power, money, and manipulation, Di channels her WWSD (What Would Starr Do) to rally the team. She owes her best friend that much. No... More.

Refuge for Masterminds: A Stranje House Novel
It’s 1814. Napoleon has escaped his imprisonment on Elba. Britain is at war on four fronts. And at Stranje House, a School for Unusual Girls, five young ladies are secretly being trained for a world of spies, diplomacy, and war….

Napoleon’s invasion of England is underway and someone at Stranje House is sneaking information to his spies. Lady Jane Moore is determined to find out who it is. If anyone can discover the traitor, it is Jane—for, according to headmistress Emma Stranje, Lady Jane is a mastermind.

Jane doesn’t consider herself a mastermind. It’s just that she tends to grasp the facts of a situation quickly, and by so doing, she’s able to devise and implement a sensible course of action. Is Jane enough of a mastermind to save the brash young American inventor Alexander Sinclair, her friends at Stranje House, and possibly England itself?

Fans of genre-blending, romance, and action will love this Regency-era alternate history novel filled with spunky heroines, handsome young lords, and dastardly villains—the third in the Stranje House series. Don’t miss the first two books: A School for Unusual Girls and Exile for Dreamers.

Learning to Swim
"Learning to Swim is a darkly romantic beginning to what promises to be an unusual contemporary YA fantasy series." --Serena Chase, USA Today

When Cora’s mother whisks the family away for the summer, Cora must decide between forging her future in the glimmering world of second homes where her parents belong, or getting lost in the bewitching world of the locals and the mystery surrounding a lonely old woman who claims to be a selkie creature—and who probably needs Cora more than anyone else.

Through the fantastical tales and anguished stories of the batty Mrs. O’Leary, as well as the company of a particularly gorgeous local boy called Ronan, Cora finds an escape from the reality of planning her life after high school. But will it come at the cost of alienating Cora’s mother, who struggles with her own tragic memories?

As the summer wanes, it becomes apparent that Ronan just may hold the answer to Mrs. O’Leary’s tragic past—and Cora’s future.

Fire And Ice
OPTIONED FOR MOTION PICTURE!

Adventure wasn’t something Lorelei Alundra was interested in. Gifted with two other-worldly talents for singing and healing, she’s always shied away from her gifts and the spotlight, preferring quiet anonymity, over attention and fame. But when she meets the enigmatic Adrius, with his dark and dangerous mystique and eyes that could see into her soul, her uneventful life becomes irrevocably altered.

Adrius turns up in every one of her classes and knows more about her than any newcomer should. Including the condition of her mother who is suffering from a mysterious illness. Accepting his offer to help leads her into a terrifying and thrilling world, where Elves are even hotter than Legolas, and Faeries.... are nothing like Tinkerbell. The two magical beings are fire and ice opposites. One Lorelei can’t help falling for, and the other she's compelled to be with.

Now she’s trapped, expected to prevent a war between witches and faeries, or forfeit her mother’s life. Nothing is what it seems. Not her family. Not the Fey. Not even Adrius, whose feelings for her balance precariously between desire and danger. Despite her better judgment, she can’t say away from him.
As secrets unravel and unsettling truths are revealed, Lorelei must fight to save much more than her mother’s life. One mistake could put the fate of his world, and her soul in jeopardy.

But hey, no pressure… right.

The Passage, a Dance, & a Little White Dress
It's been a week since 17-year-old Zoe Jabril found out her best friend is a Guardian Angel, her boyfriend is a Nephilim, and a fellow classmate is a Fairy. What makes Zoe so special? She’s destined to unify Enlightens to battle evil—that is, if Demons don’t kill her first.

With "Project: Enlightens Unite" underway, Zoe learns the history of the area wolf pack and realizes she's in a race against time to get her newly discovered talents under control. Despite struggling to fight a mysterious attraction to her new neighbor, rescue her boyfriend from Demons, and travel into Fairyland to convince the Summer King to join the fight, Zoe must still attend high school classes so her nosy parents don’t suspect anything is out of the ordinary before Demons can mount another attack.

Zoe will need all the help she can get, from the most unlikely of sources, if she’s to save her boyfriend's life and prevent the Devil from escaping Hell on her eighteenth birthday.

The Perilous Journey of the Not-So-Innocuous Girl
Lady Marguerite lives a life most 17th-century French girls can only dream of: money, designer dresses, suitors, and a secure future. Except she can’t quite commit to a life of dull luxury and she suspects she may be falling for her best friend Claude, a common smithy in the family's steam forge. When Claude leaves for New France in search of a better life, Marguerite decides to follow him and test her suspicions of love—only the trip proves to be more harrowing than she anticipated. Love, adventure, and restitution await her if she can survive the voyage.

Based on the true story of The Daughters of the King, Louis the XIV’s social program to settle the wilds of Canada with women of noble birth, Marguerite’s steampunk adventure follows in the footsteps of nearly one thousand brave women and girls who were rewarded handsomely for trekking across the pirate infested Atlantic to a strange land.

"The writing is solid and the world-building – that clever combination of historical detail and Ms. Statham’s imagination – is excellent."~ The Australia Times Books

Totally Starcross'd
A modern day retelling of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet.

"Why does she have to be Romilly Montague? Any other name on the planet. She’d be just as pretty and cute and clever—just as perfect—but she wouldn’t be Romilly Montague. Then I’d have a chance with her.”

Romilly longs for the freedom to live her own life ... but her dad is Alan Montague, hot contender for the job of Governor. And the bigger he gets, the more protective of Romilly her parents become.

Could Julian Capulet’s luck be worse? As if being born into the most conservative family in Verona wasn't bad enough, the girl of his dreams is the daughter of his father's biggest adversary in the upcoming election. His embarrassing family—especially his troublemaking younger brother—seem set to totally ruin his chances with Romilly.

For Romilly and Julian it’s never been truer that you can choose your friends but not your family. Will this story end in woe—or can there be a happily ever after for this modern-day Juliet and Romeo?

A Mortal Song
Sora's life was full of magic—until she discovered it was all a lie.

Heir to Mt. Fuji's spirit kingdom, Sora yearns to finally take on the sacred kami duties. But just as she confronts her parents to make a plea, a ghostly army invades the mountain. Barely escaping with her life, Sora follows her mother's last instructions to a heart-wrenching discovery: she is a human changeling, raised as a decoy while her parents' true daughter remained safe but unaware in modern-day Tokyo. Her powers were only borrowed, never her own. Now, with the world's natural cycles falling into chaos and the ghosts plotting an even more deadly assault, it falls on her to train the unprepared kami princess.

As Sora struggles with her emerging human weaknesses and the draw of an unanticipated ally with secrets of his own, she vows to keep fighting for her loved ones and the world they once protected. But for one mortal girl to make a difference in this desperate war between the spirits, she may have to give up the only home she's ever known.

With its breathtaking action, heart-wrenching conflict, and unexpected romance, this vivid standalone YA fantasy will delight fans of Julie Kagawa and Laini Taylor.

The Secret of a Heart Note
From critically acclaimed author Stacey Lee, an evocative novel about a teen aroma-expert who uses her extrasensitive sense of smell to help others fall in love—while protecting her own heart at all costs—perfect for fans of Lauren Myracle and E. Lockhart.

Sometimes love is right under your nose. As one of only two aromateurs left on the planet, sixteen-year-old Mimosa knows what her future holds: a lifetime of weeding, mixing love elixirs, and matchmaking—all while remaining incurably alone. For Mim, the rules are clear: falling in love would render her nose useless, taking away her one great talent. Still, Mimosa doesn’t want to spend her life elbow-deep in soil and begonias. She dreams of a normal high school experience with friends, sports practices, debate club, and even a boyfriend. But when she accidentally gives an elixir to the wrong woman and has to rely on the lovesick woman’s son, the school soccer star, to help fix the situation, Mim quickly begins to realize that falling in love isn’t always a choice you can make.

At once hopeful, funny, and romantic, Stacey Lee’s The Secret of a Heart Note is a richly evocative coming-of-age story that gives a fresh perspective on falling in love and finding one’s place in the world.

Wintersong
Dark, romantic and unforgettable, this riveting debut for fans of Labyrinth and Naomi Novik tells the fantastical story of a young woman's journey towards love and acceptance

Deep in his terrifying realm underground, the cold and forbidding Goblin King casts a dark shadow over nineteen-year-old Liesl. Her grandmother had always warned her to follow the old laws, for every year on the longest night of winter the Goblin King will emerge into the waking world in search of his eternal bride. Sensible and plain, Liesl knows it's her duty to keep her beautiful sister safe from harm, but she wishes only to indulge in her wild, captivating music, composed and played in secret in the Goblin King's honor.

When her beautiful sister Käthe is stolen by the Goblin King, Liesl knows she must set aside her childish fantasies to journey to the Underground and save her. Drawn despite herself to the strange, beautiful world she finds--and the mysterious man who rules it--she finds herself facing an impossible choice. With time and the old laws working against her, Liesl must discover who she truly is before her fate is sealed.

Set at the turn of the 19th century, when young upstart composers like Beethoven were forever altering the sound of music, S. Jae-Jones' richly imagined debut spins a spellbinding tale of music, love, sisterhood, and a young woman's search for self-actualization.

The Romeo Club
What happens when you agree to help your brother “de-nerdify” so he can catch the attention of the popular Chloe Anders, and to everyone's surprise, he actually lands her?

And what if his equally geeky friends come running with girl wish lists of their own, offering money for your services?

Well, if you’re sixteen-year-old, Delyla Denson, then you start The Romeo Club. A secret club where she’ll teach these guys how talk, act, and be cool around girls. It’s a win-win situation.

She’ll get enough money for the awesome prom dress she’s had her eye on, and the guys, well, they’ll get dates and maybe learn how to do something other than beat the next level on their video games.

There are only two problems with this plan. One, her quarterback/track star boyfriend is getting jealous of how much time she’s spending away from him and decides to try and figure out what’s going on. And two, Delyla is kind of falling for her brother’s BFF, Trey who she’s been hanging out with a lot more. And who thanks to her help, has caught the attention of the beautiful, perfect, and popular, Portia Rickard. With Portia and Trey heating up, Delyla realizes that maybe the person she’s meant to be with has been in front of her all this time.

But falling for Trey means she’ll have to take drastic measures including sabotage, with a capital S.

Roar
In a land ruled and shaped by violent magical storms, power lies with those who control them.

Aurora Pavan comes from one of the oldest Stormling families in existence. Long ago, the ungifted pledged fealty and service to her family in exchange for safe haven, and a kingdom was carved out from the wildlands and sustained by magic capable of repelling the world’s deadliest foes. As the sole heir of Pavan, Aurora's been groomed to be the perfect queen. She’s intelligent and brave and honorable. But she’s yet to show any trace of the magic she’ll need to protect her people.

To keep her secret and save her crown, Aurora’s mother arranges for her to marry a dark and brooding Stormling prince from another kingdom. At first, the prince seems like the perfect solution to all her problems. He’ll guarantee her spot as the next queen and be the champion her people need to remain safe. But the more secrets Aurora uncovers about him, the more a future with him frightens her. When she dons a disguise and sneaks out of the palace one night to spy on him, she stumbles upon a black market dealing in the very thing she lacks―storm magic. And the people selling it? They’re not Stormlings. They’re storm hunters.

Legend says that her ancestors first gained their magic by facing a storm and stealing part of its essence. And when a handsome young storm hunter reveals he was born without magic, but possesses it now, Aurora realizes there’s a third option for her future besides ruin or marriage.
She might not have magic now, but she can steal it if she’s brave enough.

Challenge a tempest. Survive it. And you become its master.

Angelstone (Dark Angel #2)
After escaping from the Hollows and the Michaelea lightwarriors, Jordan takes Alyx and Israel to Aradale, a secret Rogue community, where they appear to be safe − for now. But did they bring the enemy with them? “Mini”, the strange and speechless young girl they rescued from the Hollows, is not as she seems. Why was Elder Michael keeping her locked up? What is she hiding?

Alyx and Israel are driven further apart as Israel continues to obsess over making Adere human and Alyx hides two secrets from him: that he may be part-demon and that she may be carrying his child, a tri-blood keye that can be used to unlock Hell.

Out in the mortal cities, pieces of Black Stone, the only material that can disrupt the angels’ healing abilities, continue to be stolen to make weapons for Samyara’s dark army. Alyx and her friends must stop them, but this means infiltrating holy and guarded places to steal the Black Stone − a monastery in remote China, a mosque in Saudi Arabia, an art gallery in Florence and a cathedral in Peru.

Can they win this deadly race against the Darkened?

Tied Up In You
Everyone says hotshot goalie Luke Jackson is God’s gift to girls, but the only girl he wants is his best friend, Malina Hall. He’s always known how brilliant she is, but now that he’s “accidentally” kissed her, he can’t stop thinking about her...or wanting to kiss her again.

Problem is, things have been a little...awkward since the kiss. Because she likes him, too? Hopefully, but even if she did, their futures—and the ridiculous schedules that come with them—are in the way. And now one of his teammates is showing interest, and the guy has more in common with Malina than Jackson ever will.

As her best friend, Jackson should get out of the way. But if there’s one thing he’s learned from hockey, it’s that you have to go for what you want, even if it means falling flat on your face. And he’s definitely falling for Malina.

Disclaimer: This book contains a hot hockey player who goes after what he wants, a super-hot, super-distracting shirtless workout, and the kind of best friends to lovers romance every girl in the friend zone has dreamed of.

Someone Like Him
City girl, country guy. Will opposites attract--or clash?

When New-York-City girl Emily visits her cousin Janelle in Oregon, Emily wonders how she'll survive the wilderness. Janelle wonders if the wilderness will survive Emily's visit--and if she can convince her cousin to help save part of an old-growth forest.

Meanwhile, Emily also wonders if a big-city girl can get along with a county guy--named Bret. Under forest canopies and by crystal-clear waters she struggles with her growing attraction to him. But they're so different. Whoever thought she'd fall for someone like him?

Rite of Rejection
Straight-laced, sixteen-year-old Rebecca can’t wait for her Acceptance. A fancy ball, eligible bachelors, and her debut as an official member of society. Instead, the Machine rejects Rebecca. Labeled as a future criminal, she’s shipped off to a life sentence in a lawless penal colony.

A life behind barbed wire fences with the world’s most dangerous people terrifies Rebecca. She reluctantly joins a band of misfit teens in a risky escape plan, complete with an accidental fiancé she’s almost certain she can learn to love.

But freedom comes with a price. To escape a doomed future and prove her innocence Rebecca must embrace the criminal within.

Crooked Kingdom
The highly anticipated sequel to the thrilling #1 New York Times-bestselling Six of Crows.

Kaz Brekker and his crew have just pulled off a heist so daring even they didn't think they'd survive. But instead of divvying up a fat reward, they're right back to fighting for their lives. Double-crossed and badly weakened by the kidnapping of a valuable team member, the crew is low on resources, allies, and hope. As powerful forces from around the world descend on Ketterdam to root out the secrets of the dangerous drug known as jurda parem, old rivals and new enemies emerge to challenge Kaz's cunning and test the team's fragile loyalties. A war will be waged on the city's dark and twisting streets?a battle for revenge and redemption that will decide the fate of the Grisha world.

The Distance from A to Z
This full-length novel by debut author Natalie Blitt is a pitch-perfect blend of Stephanie Perkins and Miranda Kenneally that proves the age-old adage: opposites attract.

Seventeen-year-old Abby has only one goal for her summer: to make sure she is fluent in French—well, that, and to get as far away from baseball and her Cubs-obsessed family as possible. A summer of culture and language, with no sports in sight.

That turns out to be impossible, though, because her French partner is the exact kind of boy she was hoping to avoid. Eight weeks. 120 hours of class. 80 hours of conversation practice with someone who seems to wear baseball caps and jerseys every day.

But Zeke in French is a different person than Zeke in English. And Abby can’t help but fall for him, hard. As Abby begins to suspect that Zeke is hiding something, she has to decide if bridging the gap between who she is and who he is is worth the risk.

Destiny: New Avalon, book 1
Constantly teased and taunted by the popular girls, Elena Baxter desperately wants to fit in. On her sweet sixteenth, she receives two shocking gifts: telekinesis and the surprising truth about her heritage. With high hopes that things will be different now, Elena returns to school to find that nothing has changed. Only this time her hurt feelings and frustration boil into something even she cannot understand.

When her powers explode, chaos ensues and she learns that her new ability is greater than she ever desired. As she learns to control her powers, Elena discovers there’s so much more to her heritage than she ever imagined.

Aisuru
“You told me before that you’d never regret meeting me. Do you still feel that way now?”

Party? Cake? Friends? No, for Sakura Takeshi, her eighteenth birthday was spent meticulously preparing for her coming death. But all of her planning didn’t include meeting the star of her late guardian’s fairy tales in her garden one night.

Now she has a handsome yokai now sharing her house and her bed, a jealous young tengu living in her cherry tree, a cheerful classmate determined to push past her walls to be her first friend, and a heart in danger of being stolen.

Sakura’s stoic acceptance of her fate is slipping, but with the end of her life rapidly approaching, is there any point in learning to live again?

Aisuru is a young adult love story with a charming prince of hero, a sweetly conflicted heroine, a sprinkling of fantasy, and a little spice to warm the heart.

The Volk Advent
An orphaned Siberian teen loses her job and home on Christmas Eve. Left on the streets to freeze, Faina flees to an abandoned castle for shelter. At the castle, she discovers the animal-torn body of a local recluse. No wonder Eurasian wolves are not recommended for the first-time pet owner. Can a girl with no past, preserve her future from accusations of murderer and a pack of escaped wolves?

Soul Kiss
Melissa Torani thinks of herself as an average seventeen-year-old — certainly not the smartest nor the most popular girl in her school. So she has no clue that her crush on the super cute but nerdy new guy Daniel Florez will soon result in their sharing a deep soul kiss — a kiss that will change her life forever. Suddenly, she's plunged into a world of FBI agents, gangster thugs, and Cuban exiles. And what's up with her brain? How come she's so much smarter than she used to be?
Just one kiss from Daniel turns Melissa's world into something from the Sci-Fi Channel -- have Daniel’s brain cells been leaking into her? How's that possible? And yet she’s reading faster than she ever has before, scoring higher on school tests, and even helping her parents understand what’s wrong with her brother, the Big Mistake.
Melissa's wry, funny attitude about growing up, falling in love and getting away from her parents will make you want to be her new best friend. Fans of Richelle Mead and Stephenie Meyer will fall in love with Melissa and Daniel as they depend on their brains and their deep emotional connection to survive-- and maybe even graduate from high school along the way.

Displaced
Chevelle Donahue thought going into work would be just like any other boring day at the mall. Sure, there was her annoying co-worker Wicken Sanders, and a promotional visit from teen heartthrob Timber Hudson, to watch and keep her entertained. But who was she kidding? Working retail was lame no matter what happened.

A terrorist attack changes everything - an attack from aliens of all things. The patrons are given two options: comply or else. Complying means giving in to a new set of rules and changing her entire life. "Or else" means she has no chance of going home again.

She must figure out the truth behind why the aliens are holding everyone hostage. In doing so, she risks her chance at freedom - but by the time she learns what's really happening, she might not want it.

By Your Side
An irresistible story from Kasie West that explores the timeless question What do you do when you fall for the person you least expect?

When Autumn Collins finds herself accidentally locked in the library for an entire weekend, she doesn’t think things could get any worse. But that’s before she realizes that Dax Miller is locked in with her. Autumn doesn’t know much about Dax except that he’s trouble. Between the rumors about the fight he was in (and that brief stint in juvie that followed it) and his reputation as a loner, he’s not exactly the ideal person to be stuck with. Still, she just keeps reminding herself that it is only a matter of time before Jeff, her almost-boyfriend, realizes he left her in the library and comes to rescue her.

Only he doesn’t come. No one does.

Instead it becomes clear that Autumn is going to have to spend the next couple of days living off vending-machine food and making conversation with a boy who clearly wants nothing to do with her. Except there is more to Dax than meets the eye. As he and Autumn at first grudgingly, and then not so grudgingly, open up to each other, Autumn is struck by their surprising connection. But can their feelings for each other survive once the weekend is over and Autumn’s old life, and old love interest, threaten to pull her from Dax’s side?

Soulmated
Two souls. One Fate. The power of choice.

All eighteen-year-old Liam Whelan—an Irish royal empath—wants to do is stop the frustrating search for the elusive girl destined to be his soulmate. The rare union will cement his family's standing in empath politics and give the couple legendary powers, painting a bullseye on Liam's back—and hers.

All Indian-American Laxshmi Kapadia wants is to free herself from her traditional mother's ultimatum: graduate from high school early and go to medical school, or have her marriage arranged. Neither allow her to pursue her dreams of a career in dancing or of falling in love.

When Liam moves in next door to Laxshmi, he’s immediately drawn to the purity of her emotions, and she sees in this charming Irish boy a future with the freedom to follow her heart. But Liam's father will never consent if she's not The One. And Laxshmi's mom won't even let her talk to their handsome new neighbor. But hiding their relationship can’t keep them from becoming targets of a dark and ancient group determined to destroy the soulmated.

What will these two risk to choose their own fate?

More Than We Can Tell
Rev works hard to keep the demons of the time before his adoption at bay ... until a letter from his father after his 18th birthday brings the trauma of his childhood hurtling back.

Emma escapes real life by perfecting the online game she built from scratch. Coding is way easier than facing her parents' nasty relationship or the growing distance with her best friend ... But when an online troll's harassment starts to escalate, she fears for her safety.

When Rev and Emma meet, they're buckling under the weight of their secrets. Though both of them find it hard to put their problems into words, they connect instantly and deeply. Rev and Emma's problems might be worlds apart, but they promise to help each other no matter what.

But promises are made to be tested and some things hurt more than we can tell.

180 Seconds
Some people live their entire lives without changing their perspective. For Allison Dennis, all it takes is 180 seconds…

After a life spent bouncing from one foster home to the next, Allison is determined to keep others at arm’s length. Adopted at sixteen, she knows better than to believe in the permanence of anything. But as she begins her third year in college, she finds it increasingly difficult to disappear into the white noise pouring from her earbuds.

One unsuspecting afternoon, Allison is roped into a social experiment just off campus. Suddenly, she finds herself in front of a crowd, forced to interact with a complete stranger for 180 seconds. Neither she, nor Esben Baylor, the dreamy social media star seated opposite her, is prepared for the outcome.

When time is called, the intensity of the experience overwhelms Allison and Esben in a way that unnerves and electrifies them both. With a push from her oldest friend, Allison embarks on a journey to find out if what she and Esben shared is the real thing—and if she can finally trust in herself, in others, and in love.

Zombie Girl: Dead Awakened
Imagine waking up to find the world has ended, but unfortunately you're not alone...

For Connor Innis, awakening from a year-long coma with no memories, no ability to move, and unable to speak was bad enough. Then he learns that a bioweapon set off a zombie apocalypse—for real—while he was sleeping, and the world he can't even remember no longer exists.

Rehabilitation might be torture, but far worse awaits him outside. All too soon, the hospital Mentor declares him fit to leave with nothing to go home to except a city full of mindless, flesh-eating monsters. That is, until he forms a strange relationship with the one he nicknames 'Zombie Girl'.

Previously published by Lycaon Press, 22nd April 2015.

WARNING: contains swearing, and some moderate gore and violence.

Lucky in Love
Maddie's not impulsive. She's all about hard work and planning ahead. But one night, on a whim, she buys a lottery ticket. And then, to her astonishment --

She wins!

In a flash, Maddie's life is unrecognizable. No more stressing about college scholarships. Suddenly, she's talking about renting a yacht. And being in the spotlight at school is fun... until rumors start flying, and random people ask her for loans. Now, Maddie isn't sure who she can trust.

Except for Seth Nguyen, her funny, charming coworker at the local zoo. Seth doesn't seem aware of Maddie's big news. And, for some reason, she doesn't want to tell him. But what will happen if he learns her secret?

With tons of humor and heart, Kasie West delivers a million-dollar tale of winning, losing, and falling in love.

A School For Unusual Girls
"...kept me reading until late into the night...completely original - and totally engrossing - world, full of smart girls, handsome boys, and sinister mysteries."
- Meg Cabot, #1 NYT Bestselling Author

"...enticing from the first sentence...gender stereotypes are turned upside down..."
- New York Times Book Review

"Spellbinding! ...a beautifully written tale of adventure, intrigue, and romance...a true page-turner!"
- Rachel Hawthorne, NYT Bestselling Author

A School for Unusual Girls is the first captivating installment in the Stranje House series for young adults by award-winning author Kathleen Baldwin.

It’s 1814. Napoleon is exiled on Elba. Europe is in shambles. Britain is at war on four fronts. And Stranje House, a School for Unusual Girls, has become one of Regency England’s dark little secrets. The daughters of the beau monde who don’t fit high society’s constrictive mold are banished to Stranje House to be reformed into marriageable young ladies. Or so their parents think. In truth, Headmistress Emma Stranje, the original unusual girl, has plans for the young ladies—plans that entangle the girls in the dangerous world of spies, diplomacy, and war.

After accidentally setting her father’s stables on fire while performing a scientific experiment, Miss Georgiana Fitzwilliam is sent to Stranje House. But Georgie has no intention of being turned into a simpering, pudding-headed, marriageable miss. She plans to escape as soon as possible—until she meets Lord Sebastian Wyatt. Thrust together in a desperate mission to invent a new invisible ink for the English war effort, Georgie and Sebastian must find a way to work together without losing their heads—or their hearts…

Gemina
Moving to a space station at the edge of the galaxy was always going to be the death of Hanna’s social life. Nobody said it might actually get her killed.

The sci-fi saga that began with the breakout bestseller Illuminae continues on board the Jump Station Heimdall, where two new characters will confront the next wave of the BeiTech assault.

Hanna is the station captain’s pampered daughter; Nik the reluctant member of a notorious crime family. But while the pair are struggling with the realities of life aboard the galaxy's most boring space station, little do they know that Kady Grant and the Hypatia are headed right toward Heimdall, carrying news of the Kerenza invasion.

When an elite BeiTech strike team invades the station, Hanna and Nik are thrown together to defend their home. But alien predators are picking off the station residents one by one, and a malfunction in the station's wormhole means the space-time continuum might be ripped in two before dinner. Soon Hanna and Nik aren’t just fighting for their own survival; the fate of everyone on the Hypatia—and possibly the known universe—is in their hands.

But relax. They've totally got this. They hope.

Once again told through a compelling dossier of emails, IMs, classified files, transcripts, and schematics, Gemina raises the stakes of the Illuminae Files, hurling readers into an enthralling new story that will leave them breathless.

Our Dark Duet
The sequel—and conclusion—to Victoria Schwab’s instant #1 New York Times bestseller, This Savage Song.

Kate Harker is a girl who isn’t afraid of the dark. She’s a girl who hunts monsters. And she’s good at it. August Flynn is a monster who can never be human. No matter how much he once yearned for it. He has a part to play. And he will play it, no matter the cost.

Nearly six months after Kate and August were first thrown together, the war between the monsters and the humans is a terrifying reality. In Verity, August has become the leader he never wished to be, and in Prosperity, Kate has become the ruthless hunter she knew she could be. When a new monster emerges from the shadows—one who feeds on chaos and brings out its victim’s inner demons—it lures Kate home, where she finds more than she bargained for. She’ll face a monster she thought she killed, a boy she thought she knew, and a demon all her own.

A gorgeously written dark fantasy from New York Times-bestselling author Victoria Schwab, and one to hand to fans of Holly Black, Laini Taylor, and Maggie Stiefvater.

The Ugly Stepsister Strikes Back
Everyone knows how those fairy tales go. The princess gets beautiful, nabs her prince and leaves her evil stepsisters in the dust.

But what happens when you're the ugly stepsister and your obnoxiously perfect--pretty, smart, and, worst of all, nice--stepsister is dating the charming, devastatingly handsome guy you've had a thing for since you were nine?

Quirky, artistic and snarky Mattie Lowe does not lead a charmed life. Her mother is constantly belittling her online. The school mean girl has made it her mission to torment Mattie. But worst of all? Her stepsister is the most popular girl in school and is dating Mattie's secret crush, Jake Kingston.

Tired of being left out and done with waiting for her own fairy godmother to show up, Mattie decides to change her life. She'll start by running for senior class president against Jake.

Ella can keep her Prince Annoying. Mattie's going to rule the school.

And no one, not even a cute and suddenly flirty Jake, is going to stop her.

This is a new release of an edition originally published by Fire & Ice Books with additional bonus content.

Kisses On A Paper Airplane
Drama student Hannah Evans isn't kissing any frogs on her path to find Prince Charming. She's determined to share the perfect first kiss -- with the perfect boy -- in the perfect place -- or she's not kissing at all.

When Hannah meets a cute ginger-haired boy in first class lounge in the London airport, she knows he's 'The One.'

Pop star Theo Callahan is on the road to get as far away as possible from his back-stabbing best friend, and his supermodel girlfriend who broke his heart. Until one shy smile from Hannah has him rethinking all of his travel plans.

Theo is smitten, but he's worried she's just a groupie in search of the ultimate selfie. Can Theo learn to trust Hannah in time to share one perfect first kiss, or will Hannah be forced to kiss a frog?

Allusive Aftershock
What happens when a major earthquake changes life as you know it and the boy you thought you hated ends up saving you? Three times!

Courtland Reese is the guy everyone hates and makes fun of because … well, he is weird. He communicates with animals. Strange or interesting, seventeen-year-old Adela Castielle can’t quite figure out, but when he saves her from being trampled by her own horse, she begins to understand him a little better and wants to learn more about him.

But, Max—her best friend/dream guy/someday-to-be-her-husband-only-he-doesn’t-know-it-yet—hates Courtland with a passion. Adela wants to know why, except neither boy is talking.

When Max leaves her stranded in his parents' wine cave with his worst enemy, Courtland, after what the experts are calling a “megathrust” earthquake, Adela starts to question her loyalty to Max as steamy kisses in a dark damp cellar only fuel her emotions with more conflict.

But does she really have time to worry about that when fire, destruction and mayhem surround her?